25 March, 2012

Hamstrung

Today was 90 minutes of Hatha with Erin.

Resting the shoulders (not doing Vinyasa) unfortunately equals overworking the hamstrings (doing Hatha). I didn't realize how much hamstring there is in Hatha. More than Vinyasa. It's the standing balance poses, the leg stretches, the forward-fold stretches. So, in my effort to give my shoulder a break, I'm getting tighter down below (what I probably really need is rest, and I am seemingly unwilling to take it).

In today's class, Erin's focus was on extending backward, feeling ourselves pulled into our back side, while simultaneously bringing our chest and heart forward. It was a series of directions that were about finding opening and space in poses. It was very effective at making many of the poses feel "bigger" because we were forced to bring our awareness to these two seemingly (though not actually) opposing forces.

I must confess, I have fallen behind a few days, again, on my entries, and therefore, I am feeling kind of sparse in what I have to say or recall from the class. Shame on me. But the thing that is standing out as a clear pattern now is that I have become (what one might call) obsessed with going to yoga. I don't think it is yet an unhealthy obsession. And perhaps I am not being kind in my assessment. But I am finding myself super-reluctant to take a day off. It's like I have this streak going, and I don't want to break it. But why?

This makes me think about my dad. He's 86 years old. He exercises seven days a week, for about 90 minutes a day. I've often, in the past, told him that it would be better for him to take a day off. His response is "I just don't feel like I need it. I have a routine, and this is how I start each day." There was a time where I would be in a position to debate that point. But presently, I am not sure I have any moral authority to comment. Because, here I am, seven days, stating that I don't feel like I need a day off. But my shoulder is a little sore. My hamstrings are tight. And I am rationalizing that "listening to my body" means modifying my workout to go around the injuries, rather than just taking a day off.

Why?

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