Tuesday, March 15, 2011

really getting into yoga

Went to yoga tonight and, not for the first time, thought about how it's become one of the highlights of my week.
Not quite sure how I got into it, but think it was from listening to The Yoga Man and my friend Aubrey from London talk about it - they are both Iyengar yoga teachers. Now I was into tai chi - used to go to about five classes a week and do a pose or two every morning. Ja, well, no fine, did the poses all wrong and hurt my damn knee, well kneecap, which went out of alignment from extending my knees over my toes when in a squatting position.
Anyway, no soft tissue or cartilage damage - had one of those dreaded MRIs (my absolute worst, well, coupled with the Z-sampler or whatever the endometrial cancer test is).
Anyway, started going to yoga and did both until my knee gave way. Then I got sick and when I asked The Tango Man if I could do yoga, he said yes, but really, people have no idea of how much energy is involved. There was no ways I could do yoga while having chemo although I did do restorative yoga.
Went back to gym long before I went back to yoga (when I was halfway through radiation) and now I go religiously once a week (there isn't another beginner class in the evening with my teacher).
Part of why I have to be so disciplined about it is that it is good for my arm, which is high risk for lymphedema. But have to admit, if I wasn't doing at least 50 minutes manual lymph drainage massage every day, would do some yoga at home too. But with early gym three times a week, work every day, and going out almost every night, adding yoga to the mix would feel a little insane.
But now I really love yoga. Although admittedly I was hungry this evening and spent a fair amount of the class planning what I was going to make for supper afterwards (and I didn't cook the mushrooms after all but instead baked hake and ate last night's roast veggies). I go and let the teacher's words control me as I do the asanas as directed. Wonderful!!
And my arm is ok. Well, it's up again but as The Lymph Lady said today: it's not about going up, it's the trend and so far the trend is fine cos if it goes up, it also goes down the next week. Plus I ate like a pig this weekend (went away to Lesotho) and so temporarily gained a kilo.....
To get back to yoga, I always remember how in my first class post-cancer, I told the teacher how I might have limited mobility in my left arm because of the radiation. Well, I am chuffed to report that everything is fine mobilility-wise, cos have been doing arm exercises from when I was having radiotherapy... and now, turning down all Tuesday invites has been well worth it - yoga makes me feel great: energetic and enthused.

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