Yes, I’m one of them.
I’ve been converted. No, I’m not becoming a nun. *snorts*
Once (or unbelievably, sometimes twice) a week, I leave my house and go to a……*chokes a bit*… gym. Yes, you heard me right. ME. AT. A. GYM.
But I don’t use the gym equipment, oh no. Or go to spin class. Or lift weights. Nope. Actually, I wish I could have recorded the look in the fresh, 12 year old staff members eyes when he offered to induct me on the gym equipment and I proudly said; “No thanks, you’ll not be seeing me on those desperate monsters. Ever.” I think he genuinely thought I was nuts. And I am.
I’m yoga nuts. Or more specifically, I’m on my journey to becoming a ‘Yoga Nut’ – I believe that’s an actual term? Since losing the weight, I’ve reached a point when I realised I had to start doing some form of exercise – and chasing the kids round the playground holding a caramel latte just wasn’t going to cut the mustard. So I tentatively looked around for a solution and remembered that I had attended a lovely baby yoga class when my son was little and it hadn’t been that scary. So off I went in my new Matalan yoga pants – oh, yes – only the best for me. And you know what? It was great. (And yes, that IS a photo of my new physique…)
I remember all too well those scary times in school PE when I was actually RELIEVED to have an ingrowing toenail because I was too scared/freaked out/embarrassed/worried/ anxious/paranoid/self-conscious (just pick any of the above) to jump on the trampoline/go swimming/do gymnastics/netball/running (again, pick any of the above). God, I WISH yoga had been available at my school when I went – I think I would be a different person now and might possibly have begun to have a love for exercise. Well, all I can say is thank God at least I’ve discovered it now.
What’s lovely about yoga is there is no competition – not even with yourself. I think that’s the thing that put me off sport and exercise all these years – because I wasn’t naturally sporty, the competition element always intimidated me because as my family and friends know, I don’t like to fail at things – if I’m going to do something I want to be the best at it – I just can’t help it. But in yoga, they talk about the journey and that’s what takes all the pressure off. It doesn’t matter if the woman next to you is so flexible she appears to be made of plastic and can practically put her head up her bum. (Actually happened). It doesn’t matter that the 80 year old man behind you is calmly sitting in the crow pose for what seems like an hour and you’re wobbling like crazy, and worrying about your boob popping out – NO ONE CARES. Not even me. I just want to feel calm, relaxed and loose – (not in the slutty sense, you understand). As the pace of my life has changed, so has my outlook and yoga has arrived in my life at exactly the right time for me.
I couldn’t touch my toes when I started. Last week I wanted to stop the class so we could celebrate as a group when I realised I was grasping them easily – it just makes you feel better. Even if you never manage to touch your toes or do a head stand – you will always feel better when you practice yoga. It’s for everyone. I even brought the kids to a family yoga class this week (which was actually wonderful) and they both loved it and I could almost literally see how, if I encourage them to follow this practice throughout their childhood then they will be able to feel more centred, relaxed and calm within themselves and they will develop a love for exercise early on. And that’s something I never thought I would be able to share with my children. I’m on a mission now to convert everyone to practice yoga. So, have a think about it – you might enjoy it more than you think.
PS: There is farting.