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Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Every week I attend a yoga class at the fabulous Yoga Oasis studio here in Tucson. They're called Yoga Hour and it's  a type (or brand as I heard the instructor say) of Vinyasa or flow yoga. It's an ass-kicker of a workout because after you do the first portion of the class which is very quick and exciting and focuses on sun salutation type moves, and of course lots of downward dog (only in this class is downward dog considered a resting, easy pose, ha), and then the second portion focuses on more challenging, slightly more static poses.

I'm going today and I am stoked, because last week I finally achieved crane pose!

A lot of times, this pose has your knees actually pressing to the inner sides of your elbows, but I do it like this sideburned yogi shown above, where I put my knees against my upper arms instead. It gives me more stability and it's either because this is an easier expression of the pose or because my legs are long and it gives me more room. Exciting! I didn't stay in it for long but I achieved it and I swear I was THIS close to standing up on my knees afterwards, looking around the crowded room and screaming "DID YOU SEE THAT?!"

Some other poses I love are side plank:

And then side plank tree poses one and two:

They're challenging and also enjoyable even though I sort of want to groan or cry out by the time we get to them in class, especially the last variation of side plank tree. Our teacher has us switch from the bended knee being on top, then slowly twist and switch hands so it points downward. It took me many classes to learn that I need to isometrically squeeze my thighs together, or else it feels like my girly parts are going to fall right down onto my yoga mat. TMI.

But HERE is a pose that I am nowhere near achieving but hope to do so one day. Our instructor did it several weeks ago and I think I feel a little in love with her for it, or at least in love with her superhero abs:

You get into this position beginning on your knees. Then you position your palms on the mat and then slowly turn them so they're in the ungodly position of pointing backwards.  Then you know, you just like, easy breezy, LIFT YOUR LEGS OFF THE MAT. The second I tried that stage of the pose, I knew I was either going to pitch forward or send my intestines rocketing out of my rear end so I stopped. But one day, peacock, I'm going to OWN you.

I know you're supposed to be a little more, hmmm, what's the word... zen? About yoga? But this is flow yoga, and it gets me super amped up, and so my attitude is a little more gung ho about it. One day when I have more time I'd like to add more traditional classes where I can focus on separate poses instead of all poses linking together in order to wear myself out and burn the five million wine calories I consume on a weekly basis. But that's not happening anytime soon. Obviously I have far too much wine to drink to be just picking up another exercise class.

Happy yogaing to all!

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