Back to 04.18.07: Yoga Nutty

- Nuffnang blogger Triportreats -

I wanted to resuscitate this old blog post because I'm going back to my Yoga routine. Pray I keep at it, especially with all this Trip or Treating.

Of the numerous blogs I've written, there seems to not be one about my true passion. It isn't a recent one; it's been a part of my life for about six years now. I've always wanted to explore its potential but only recently has my fervor overwhelmed me to the point that I capitalized on it and sprung my lazy procrastinating tush to action.

My close friends know I do it, but no one has really seen me "do it." When I recruited my roommate to Equinox, the first thing I said was "we're doing yoga." I took her to Rudy Mettias' Mon/Wed Power Yoga class, and Tamal's Thurs class. She seemed to enjoy it but could not understand how my head could touch the floor while I was hinged from Uttanasana. I invited Tin and Bianca to Light's (yes, a real name) Saturday Power Yoga class and they almost threw rocks at me coz their blood almost clotted while doing the chatarunga... I won't bore with terms that sound yiddish.

I've been doing yoga for about six years now. Blame it on my flexibility but it wasn't that hard to begin with. I could never keep my concentration in the beginning because the teachers I had were usually from Fitness First (I had the same class with high-pitched all-around instructors), student teachers at Pepperdine who just needed their hourly pay, or just really boring types.

My practice truly began last year when I joined Equinox and fell in love with the yoga practice, the teachers, and the calm I get after every class. It was as if someone gave me catnip and made me feel 100 lbs lighter. Living in Santa Monica, I was a lucky brat who was surrounded by the best yoga studios in a four-block radius. There were two Santa Monica Power Yoga studios, then my Equinox, and Home yoga, which was my next door neighbor. I attribute my Greek Isle cruise physique to regular power yoga sessions with the yogis Rudy, Tamal, and especially Light.

Light, my yoga mentor

His classes were so inspiring that I shelled out my first paycheck (maybe it was two) to attend his yoga retreat by myself. I tried to bring Chantalle but she gave me the look that said i-won't-be-eating-grass-and-chanting-out-in-Ojai, but it was one of my most memorable experiences and met people that were truly shining from the inside out. Light has the voice of a true yogi: airy, passionate, and definitely inspiring. The clincher for me was not the poses he made us do, although it made me sweat like a dog. It was his use of music as diverse as Radiohead, U2, Edie Brickell, Dave Matthews, Snoop, Dogg OutKast and others. And the collaboration of his voice that brought me to do nothing more that the poses he dictated.

The problem I have, which is very evident, is that my mind never stops. Not only do I over think things, it doesn't stop thinking, wondering, and distracting. During one of Light's classes, one of the most memorable ones because I was going through some downtime, I was introduced to my now-favorite song, which said: “Sometimes my mind is too strong to carry on.” Yoga is the only time that my brain shuts down and truly connects with my body. As much as I try to remember the poses step by step, I cannot. Because it is so much an out of body experience. It feels like my mind went to the spa for the weekend and comes out revitalized.

Upon moving to New York, I became a little scared because I couldn't find the practice that reflected my Santa Monica mood, but now I believe I'm more passionate about it because of the new discoveries I've come across.

My curiosity has brought me to dig deep and truly understand what it means to do yoga. It isn't just a workout, but a way of life. No, I don't think I can be vegetarian or grow my body hair out, but I am taking it day by day. I keep wanting for more, to learn about it and try to embody it. When I am doing yoga, I feel at peace, I feel truly happy and refreshingly enlightened. It helps that I am surrounded by teachers who are the true embodiment of yogis, but I want to get to the point where my practice requires no one but myself, my mind, and my body.

So now, I am a full-fledged yoga nut. I practice vinyasa, anusara, hatha, ashtanga and bikram yoga. I really enjoy the fast paced power-yoga ones. But I realized there are benefits to each practice. Don't worry, I'm still a person. I haven't gone tree-hugger, just yet.

My yoga teacher Light now teaches Vedic Meditation in Venice Beach CA. Check Light out.









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