When I’m at my apartment I chill with my brother a lot. I love that kid. My brother has told me before that he wanted to try yoga. He and I used to be gym buddies. But lately our sleep schedules haven’t quite been overlapping all that much and to avoid sitting at my computer chair on a daily basis I push myself to go to the gym at around 6-6:30am; when, unfortunately, my brother is still snoozing. I miss tag teaming with him at the gym, but if I don’t push myself to go to work out then it doesn’t happen.
So recently, I’ve been riding solo to the YMCA closest to my apartment (I have a free membership through my university). When I get there I pop on my earphones and get in the zone. I don’t talk to anyone really (its mostly empty in the mornings), and I try to do a little bit of something in each of the rooms (weight room, cardio machine room, other machine room, etc..).
Well, one day, I decided to do my work out out of order (usually I do cardio first in the cardio machine room), I started in the weight room and did some squats. On my way back to the central area of the YMCA I saw that people were setting up for a yoga class in the main group workout area.
Now, I have tried yoga before, I think four years ago. It was not the most pleasant of experiences. When I was completing my first degree my university dropped some mad amount of money on a new gym and recreational center for its main campus. Kosmonat and I decided to explore the group exercises one day and we ended up going to a yoga class.
This class was hard as fuck. The yoga instructor would keep saying things like “I can see we have some new people” and “Try and keep up if you’re just a beginner” or “These are simple positions so it should be easy for our beginners”… I think those comments just made me look like a bigger jack ass for not being able to pretzel my way into whatever the hell position she was trying to make us do. I literally fell on my face the majority of the time and the other half of the time I was asking Naty if it looked like I was doing it right. To which she would tell me she had no idea.
That yoga class was going 150 miles an hour and I didn’t understand any of it.
Fast forward to my curious gym morning this past week, I cringed at the sign that said yoga. Gross. But then I thought about how my brother really wanted to try the yoga sessions at this gym. As more and more people started piling in I found myself just kind of standing there looking at all of them. Then I thought, “You know what? I don’t feel like doing cardio…so fuck it”. I grabbed a mat, took off my shoes and sat my ass down.
A really thin, short haired blonde woman made her way to the front of the class, she had a super cute yoga outfit on. And when she opened her mouth, a super strong Russian accent coated her words.
OH SHIT, I LOVE HER ALREADY. This is gonna be good.
So I was pleasantly surprised to find that my instructor was far more easy going and explanatory than my previous experience. She would give two to three suggestions about alternative positions we could make if we wanted to “challenge” ourselves. As in, if we were more advanced. So the majority of her instructions were for the most basic positions. AKA – PERFECT FOR ME.
She was also really big on the calming and relaxation part of yoga, which is cool because I could use more of that to subdue my anxiety. Her inhale and exhale instructions were really detailed – from your nose, from your mouth, while lifting your arms or lowering your leg. It was awesome.
This was the bomb. I was able to follow every instruction using one method or another. I felt like a badass.
And, to my surprise, I was drenched in sweat by the end of the session. I had no idea that yoga could make me feel like I had just done a twelve mile marathon without so much as moving one foot in each direction of my mat.
I enjoyed myself so much that I think I’ll be incorporating these yoga sessions into my weekly gym routine.
What about you guys? Have you ever tried yoga before? Was it everything you’d dreamed it would be? Or was it a huge ball of festering failure?