30 Days of Yoga: Days 1 – 10

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It may be a bit late to start talking about yoga 10 days into the 30 day challenge, but I didn’t set up the blog until day 9!

Quick rundown:

  • I started doing yoga in September, after having done it only a handful of times ever and self-identifying as “terrible at yoga”. I don’t actually remember why.  It just seemed like the right thing to do right then, so I did.
  • I’m very very time and money poor, so classes aren’t an option, but Youtube is a wonder of the modern world and I found heaps of cool stuff to try at home
  • Friends recommended Yoga with Adriene for being an awesome channel with minimal hippy vibes and a really kind approach to bodies with pain issues, so I tried a few videos and wholeheartedly agree – Adriene rules!
  • I was doing 30 minutes – 1 hour each day, just choosing videos based on what I felt like, it tapered off during late October (which is the annual hell-month/actual hell-mouth of my job), and I picked it back up mid November
  • 10 days ago (November 20th) I decided to go hard and do a more formal schedule of practice with Adriene’s 30 Days of Yoga challenge, and I’ve just completed day 10.

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This is how it has gone so far:

  • Day 1-3 felt really good and chill, a nice way to ease into it and get used to doing some of the same movements every day. I set the goal on day one that the only thing I really wanted to achieve in 30 days was to be able to lower through Chaturanga Dandasana (the totally bananas-level hard thing where you lower slowly from plank with your elbows pulled in).
  • Day 4 I got glutened and felt miserable, worked until super late at the Music Quiz, had one two many ciders, walked all the way home and fell asleep on the couch, so I missed my practice that day. It’s amazing how even missing a single day (combined with not feeling so well) made me way less keen to do it the next day! But I DID IT.
  • Day 5 I did both days’ videos back to back. Thankfully, Adriene is a hero and has paced her videos for people like me, who start off racing out of the gate then realise we’re tired and grumpy and want to go home. Day 4 and 5 practices were 20 minutes and 16 minutes each, which made them feel achievable in one go and got me back on track. I felt a lot less tired and grumpy afterward!
  • Day 6 had me freaked out because it was called “6 pack abs”! Why?! I still wasn’t feeling well, but I tried my partner’s trick of just getting the yoga mat out and leaving it there until it makes more sense to do the thing than leave the mat sitting there unused. I survived! Surprisingly, though, 6 pack abs did not materialise. But it did prove to me I was well enough to do an overnight hike/camp, so we took off into the mountains outside our back garden for the night.
  • Day 7 we got up early (since we were in a tiny tent on a sea cliff) and I would have been tempted to drag my mat out onto the hilltop (I slept the night on it) and do my practice right there, but we were completely fogged in and couldn’t see anything so we just packed up and set off home. Day 7 was probably my wobbliest day, because it included some side planks which my upper body is just not ready for – and probably because I was super duper tired from a week of yoga and hiking. I did dream that Adriene and Taylor Swift were secretly in a relationship and planning to get married though, to which my partner replied “… it’s like you stole that straight from the brain of a 10 year old girl….”
  • Day 8 was an absolutely beautiful stunning day, so I took the dog for a run and decided to do my yoga outside on the deck when I got back. The day 8 practice was a really slow, meditative one, and doing it in the cool evening air with tui and kaka squabbling overhead was really calming and refreshing.  My heels touched the ground during downward dog!
  • Day 9 I got over ambitious, and decided I would do morning AND evening yoga! Rookie mistake. It was lovely to get up and do a morning yoga workout, and I had a really productive day afterward but by the time I had worked all day, taught classes, waited for the bus and got home at 10 I didn’t want to do another round – so while I did yoga, I didn’t do the official day 9 practise.

Soooooo today is Day 10, and I decided to do the videos for both 9 and 10. I was really friggin’ tired this morning. I wanted to do the day 9 video early before work but I couldn’t face it and dragged myself out of bed later than intended so I had to race to work (gardening). I was pottering around this afternoon, slowly doing admin stuff and feeling blergh in the heat, craving sugar and being generally unproductive and decided – screw it, I’ll do them now and wake myself up. So I did! And I feel 100 times better! It’s really really hot today, so I took my shirt off and sweated a lot and achieved one Chaturanga that lowered all the way down with control (and a lot that didn’t), and found my (short) downward dog with my heels down and got my nose to my knees in forward fold and I’m really excited. I’m definitely in less pain through my back and shoulders/neck, I feel stronger and can already see I am bendier. I feel like I am achieving things, slowly and happily.

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