Friday, January 14, 2011

Something is better than nothing...


Or...don't let imperfection stop you from at least giving something a try.

We are two weeks into the new year...can you believe it? Time flies...even in 2011. And...so far so good.

As you may remember I decided to write down a list of goals for myself...if it was floating around in my head, it got written down on The List. I wrote down everything from write to live on acreage and dig a cold cellar. I wrote simple little things like grow herbs and I wrote down things that will be a bit more of a challenge and stretch like grow all of the food we'll need for a whole year. As I shared last week...I wrote goals for my creativity...and I moved on that goal and actually made something. And it felt good. I felt accomplished.

Another thing I wrote on The List was get in shape. Pretty broad...I know. Then right below that goal I wrote do yoga/stretch. OK...there we go...narrowing it down a bit. What I really was looking for was some good stretching exercises. I have fibromyalgia and it tends to make me really tight and sore...especially in my neck and back. But lately I noticed it creeping into my hips. That's where I had to draw the line. OLD people have hip problems...okay? Not me.

Well...I knew that actually attending a yoga class wasn't in the cards right now...our finances are slowly getting back on track...but yoga still isn't in the budget. And honestly, I'm not one to GO to a class...or to a gym. I'm more apt to do something if I can do it in the privacy of my own home...with no observers. Ahem.

So...you know the routine...if you're like me, you're just going through your day, washing clothes, paying bills, running errands, making phone calls...and all the while your mind is going, thinking on things, figuring things out...and sometimes it can get a little overwhelming. (Hence...The List...had to get it OUT of the head and ONTO paper.) However...at some point I got the idea to see if I would be able to Demand, through our cable company, a yoga show.

Hmm...that could work. So the next morning...I got up off my butt and gave it a try.

And...after selecting a few yoga shows...some too new agey...some too soothing...some just TOO...I found one that I liked. The description said, "yoga based". And I liked that. I don't want to hear about chakras and whatnot. I just want to stretch. Yoga-based sounded good...so I pressed Select and got into Mountain pose. (I just cracked myself up...)

I'd made a good choice. The class was only 20 minutes long and the instructor gave lots of modifications for those of us new to actually moving, stretching and bending. There were a few things that I absolutely could not do...but rather than quit, which is what I would have done not too long ago, instead I sat and maybe just did the arm movements...or a stretch that I'd done earlier...something to just keep moving. Before I knew it the 20 minutes was up...and I felt great. It wasn't much...but it was something. And something is better than nothing. I wasn't able to do it perfectly...but I was able to do something. So that's what I did. And it felt good.

That was a little over a week ago...and so far I've done yoga 6 times. I tuned into the same yoga based class I started with...but come to find out, it's the same exact show every time. And I knew that was going to bore me. So...I searched around a bit more and found two more classes that I liked. One was about 40 minutes long..and a bit more intense. But again, I just did what I could. And even after just a week, I'm already noticing that I can do a teensy bit more each time. Already...some progress. I like that... 

This morning I followed along to a yoga DVD I borrowed from the library. Again, no cost and in the privacy of my own home. Perfect. It was a little bit...groovy, shall we say? But...the exercises were good and highly modified as they were yoga moves for people with chronic pain issues. It was actually really good for me...and since I did a more intense workout yesterday, and was definitely feeling it today, it was perfect timing for something a little more gentle.

Interestingly...there's been a chain reaction. I'm more aware of my breathing throughout the day. I've been taking good deep breaths, and being aware of when I needed to. I'm more aware of my posture. While I'm walking...while I'm standing...while I'm sitting at the computer. And I'm more aware of what I'm putting into my body. Maybe aware is not the best word. Maybe I just care more about what I'm putting into my body. (I've always been aware...whether it was good or bad...I knew!) For instance...I'm sipping miso right now. (And I like it!) For breakfast I had a piece of whole wheat toast with organic peanut butter and honey, a bowl of yogurt sprinkled with homemade granola and a half of an avocado. This is not to say that I'm not gonna eat some peanut M&M's...or indulge in a few slices of pizza. But...it is a start. Good changes are taking place. And...something is better than nothing. 

12 comments:

Lelainia N. Lloyd said...

You're doing the work and picking up momentum. Before long, the forward motion is going to carry you! YAY!

My dh does yoga every morning at 4 a.m. before work.

Talitha said...

This is so great, Michelle! I'm trying to do this too. Slow and steady. Small progress. Baby steps. Consistency. Yep, all that stuff. But NO perfection. ;)

dmoms said...

YES! YES! YES!!

no doubt yoga makes us more aware!!

You articulated this so well - I love it!!!

p.s. - I don't discuss chakras in my class.

teekaroo said...

Good for you! I'm still trying to figure out when and where to attack the "get in shape" goal. Right now there is not a bare spot on the floor, thanks to the busy baby.

WhiteStone said...

What an encouraging post! I haven't gone into yoga but I do some stretching exercises in the morning before getting out of bed. It's amazing how that loosens the muscles. I began doing that after watching a Public TV program on stretching for "old people". I was not yet old but I was bored and so I followed along. I was amazed at how helpful a few stretches can be. Go, Girl! You're on the right track.

Tia said...

Love it! Great job! Very encouraging to us all, who have so many good attentions. Yoga is very strengthening and soothing at the same time.

But the line about not wanting to hear about chakras and whatnot made me laugh out loud, because that was my same feeling in my first yoga class.

Erin Wallace said...

I'm happy for you, Michelle. Yoga is a wonderful practice and you are making great strides. Good going!

Erin said...

Good for you, Michelle! I love yoga - as a Christian I find I can use the meditation time to meditate on the Lord and submit my mind and body to him. Sounds like you're on a roll!!

Beegirl said...

YAY!! I used to hit a yoga class x3 a week, but just don't have the time to get there now. Started running at home (with the help of an app on the iPod called Couch to 5K ~ aka run to kick couch potato butt) and doing yoga after. I can stretch really well after running and it really helps my cabin fever. We've been doing some cross country skiing too, now that the snow is here. Best of luck to you. Check out Yoga Journal on-line. They may have some free sequences etc. to check out. Best to you!!

Sarah { bee house hives } said...

a great list. keep it up! i love yoga and think the world would be a better place if everyone did it :) that's just me though :) mae and otto streetch along with me -it is so great.
know you are in my thoughts and i wish you much success with your list. you can do it!

Nancy said...

yay for you! you've inspired me to want to get busy and move...i've never done yoga but i'm thinking i should give it a try. i've heard so many good things about it in the last year. i have new tennis shoes sitting in a box in my closet just waiting for me to take them out on a nice jaunt....

Camilla~ Bloom said...

Go Michelle!

I don't know what my life would be without Yoga.