Monday, November 7, 2011

Seeing thru the blur of sweat...

As I've eluded to in one of my earliest posts, I used to mediate a lot and it became one of those things that really changed my life for the better.  So, I suppose it's odd that I no longer practice it.  I don't know how or why this happens...we find something we really enjoy, something that changes us, stirs some emotion or desire, provides that spark...and lo and behold, it somehow finds it's way to the back burner until it disappears all together.

I've contemplated, over these past few years, about taking up mediation again.  I even bought a meditation nail mat, which is supposed to enhance your practice, allowing for a deeper state of relaxation and thus, longer periods of self-reflection.  At the height of my mediation practice, I attended several activities at the Siddha Yoga Ashram in Oakland including meditation, Shri Guru Gita and some Temple Chants.  These were amazing at helping me to get focused, relaxed, and connected to something other than all of the garbage that usually occupied my thoughts.  And I'll admit, just thinking about their Amrit Cafe makes my mouth water.

I didn't know a single person at the Ashram...and I stopped going before I ever got to know any one.  I suppose it's kind of like that, at places where people are being introspective and the only "talking" is really chanting.  It was outside of my comfort-zone which also included driving 45 minutes to myself.  Yet, the rewards were so worth it.

What does this have to do with today?  Well, I was privy to a great Got Daily Deal special for our local hot yoga studio.  As most of you know, attending yoga at a studio is usually very expensive ($100 + per month) so when I saw a one month unlimited coupon for $20 I was all over it!  Having been to my 4th vinyasa flow class so far I can tell you that hot yoga, for me, is a lot like mediating, except with a lot of sweat.

Honesty, when I attended my first class I knew it would be warm...but I had no clue that when they said hot they meant HOT.  Like 100 degrees hot.  As in, "Wow, even the floor is hot!  I gotta get on my mat before my feet burn" hot.  It's been several years since I did yoga in the real sense of the word, meaning, not while distractedly watching The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills while trying to stay balanced in Crane Pose, so I don't recall any prior yoga classes having this kind of impact on me.  As a matter of fact, I am sure I've never felt the need to break down in tears in the middle of class like I did last Wednesday.

As emotional as these classes have been, and as happy as I feel in my life right, I know that the meditative aspect has been able to stir some 'issues' that I have yet to address.  They may not be the huge issues I had at certain points in my life, but there are still some lingering around.

Which leads me back to the thought, why did I stop?  Pretty soon my $20 deal will expire and I am in no position to pay the regular fees to continue at the studio (thanks economy, job loss and 3 pay cuts).  And although I did manage to get a Groupon for a 3 month membership at my local Gold's Gym (for only $49~score), I know that their yoga classes will not stir the types of feelings that I got in that 102 degree, humid room, with Krishna Das chanting "Om Namah Shivaya" softly in the background, as I struggled in side plank with rivulets of sweat running down my arms.  Which leads me to believe that it is time to dust off the nail mat, download some Mantra Radio, and start reconnecting again.

I purchased my Nail Mat at Marshalls for $10!! =)


  1. I totally get it. Totally. Come back occasionally and sweat it all out!!!!

  2. I have yet to attend our hot yoga classes. I'm waiting until it gets super cold outside; maybe then I'll enjoy it a bit more.
    Life gets in the way, Lynn. It happens all of the time, even when we have the best intentions of sticking with something, unless we're getting paid to keep it up, sometimes it gets pushed to the backburner just like you said. I completely agree now that I will never be able to let go of Yoga due to all the benefits I reap from it. It's like having a psychiatrist, personal trainer and masseuse all wrapped into one. Still, like you - I'm afraid that life will try and drive a wedge between me and it. We just have to keep reminding ourselves that we come first. Period. I hope you're able to keep swinging these deals so you can continue going.


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