It’s Christmas Day here in Austin, Texas, USA. And you know what that means for this Jewd (Jewish + Dude = Jewd — Trademark me!): Another year of daily 30 minutes (or more) of yoga has come to a close, and another begins. Lucky number seven. Yoga is second nature to me now, but in those first days and weeks, I didn’t know how long I would continue, or if it would stick at all. I was just taking it a day at a time, and in a way, I still do. But it has stuck (sort of like my sticky mat), for over 2,500 days, which is nothing short of a miracle for A Dude. Which needs replacing, and Harry Hanukkah and that other guy with the red suit didn’t bring me one… again. Sigh… deep breath in, deep breath out. But given my other streaks in biking, walking and writing, all that yoga is no small thing and deserves some recognition, I think you’ll agree.
Here’s what I wrote about today’s event in my Strava fitness app notes:
I celebrated this lucky milestone with Yoga Party on Yoga With Adriene on her YouTube channel. https://yogawithadriene.com/yoga-party/. I met the fellow Austinite (who has only 8 million followers), and she was very sweet and genuine just like in her videos. Normally I don't post yoga on Strava, but once a year on my yogaversary seems appropriate. Really I began on 12/4/2013, but on 12/23-24 I was too out of it from a minor medical thing, so I'm going with 12/25/2013 as my actual yogaversary from now on. Hopefully I won't miss any days due to injury or illness and can keep up the streak. But at this point it doesn't really matter. and I don't have any fear I'll quit. I'll continue to do some breathing, postures, or other yoga practices as long as I can. The nice thing about yoga is you can start where you are. Give it (and Adriene) a try. It will help you with biking, running and other activities, too. Namaste, y'all.
I started using Insight Meditation Timer on December 27, 2015, right after I got a cell phone and Strava. It has guided meditations, a social component and more, but the main thing for me is a way to record that I’ve done yoga. Not that I care if anyone doesn’t believe me. Why would I make it up? But just for fun, here are some screen shots of my activities on the IMT.
I’ve written previous posts about yoga, which you may find using the SEARCH box towards the top right of the home page. I’ve too blissed out to go look them up and link them all here. The most recent and I think interesting one is My Yogaversary Began 7 Years Ago, But My History With Yoga Goes W/ay Back. Obviously there’s something about yoga that keeps me coming back to the mat. Sure, it helps with keeping the legs limber for bicycling, breathing, stress reduction, concentration, balance, and other stuff I can’t think of at the moment. But like biking, or many activities, it’s the ineffable, subtle and hard-to-describe aspects of it that I like. Whatever it is, it works for me.
Pro tip: Leave your mat out on the floor! It will beckon you to practice regularly, and silently mock you when you don’t.
It’s a form of moving meditation. In fact, it was designed to get the body ready for meditation. That’s something I’ve managed to do daily all year, but only for five minutes. The IM Timer has been invaluable for that, because it has a whole library of free guided meditations. You can choose the method, result, or other things like length, music or not, male or female voice, and more. That’s all in the free version, and if you want to pay for it, of course you get access to more. You can even see who is meditating around you and their location of fellow Timer users worldwide. I don’t do any social networking there, but that’s also an option.
But as for my yoga practice, I would say it’s been a commitment, and a bit of a struggle to keep it going. Plenty of days I’m too tired. So I nap on the mat and then do it. Lately I’ve been in a bit of a rut doing the same floor-based poses, so I think I may try Adriene’s month of videos that she posts every January. Appropriately enough, for 2021 it’s called BREATH. After the 2020 we’ve all had, I think it’s high time we all take a big deep one. And then another one after that. Check it out here and see how you like it.
I hope I’ve helped inspire you to get on, or back on, the yoga mat! If not, that’s OK. It’s not for everyone. For some, yoga is all Greek to them. Mmm… Greek yogurt. ADAB out! PS. Merry Christmas, if that’s your jam! (Mmm… jam.)
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