28 January, 2014

What defines a practice?

Today was short-format vinyasa home practice.

I’ve been struggling with the neck and shoulder muscles. I know why now. I suspected that I didn’t have my head position exactly right for all these headstands I have been practicing. I didn’t really think it could have such an impact on these muscles, but it has. Today, I decided to go for a long massage, which I haven’t done in months. I would love to say that it was blissful, but it was actually rather brutal. I would liken it to going to a dentist after not having your teeth cleaned for 5 years. 

So, I need to think about how to do those headstands without hurting myself.

Anyway, I arrived home after the massage, with a couple of hours before needing to head to the airport (again) for a flight down to California. I was waffling about whether or not I should do yoga today, or just let the massage soak in, and leave it at that. But, after dawdling for an hour, I decided that there wasn’t a really good reason not to do yoga, so I did it. The sequence was an abbreviated Baptiste flow. Probably lasted about 35-40 minutes. I wasn’t 100% present, but I wasn’t 100% absent. I did what I did. I have a sort of arbitrary rigidity about “60 minutes is the minimum acceptable amount of yoga to make the statement ‘I did yoga today’.” I am sure that is related to the fact that every yoga class I have taken has been 60 minutes or longer. But the truth is (and I am not rationalizing), this is sort of more about the arbitrary counting process. I don’t have a contract. I don’t punch a time clock. I am not even registered for an official 40 day challenge or anything of that sort. I am just trying to be committed to my yoga practice.

Today’s yoga practice was 35 minutes.

And so it is written.

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