I made it to my 8:40am yoga class. After hitting my snooze button for an hour, I finally got out of bed with 10 minutes to spare. I felt pretty miserable. It is not a physical soreness that I have been feeling, nor is it similar to cold or flu symptoms. It is the feeling of my body starting to detoxify all of the stuff that has just been sitting there and building up. It is internal. I feel blockages opening up between my shoulder blades. I feel a dull pain on both sides of my abdomen. The insides of my hip muscles feel stale. They are very interesting feelings that are hard for me to describe. But, I know that it is my body detoxifying itself. It is all of my internal organs being activated.
As I have written before, I got into yoga years ago as a way of physical fitness and boy did it work for me! It strengthens and lengthens muscles that I didn’t even know that I had! It made me limber, strong, and balanced. Shortly after starting my practice I recognized many other benefits as well. It is a moving mediation. I was able to let thoughts come and go during my practice, but keep my focus on my breath and bring my attention to where I am at this moment in time. Of course my mind drifts but I don't get mad at myself for it, I simply let it go. The lessons that I learn on the mat come with me off the mat. Lessons in self-acceptance and so many other things.
This week what I noticed though, is that I want the yoga asana practice in my life to keep all of my internal organs functioning at their best. I want to be constantly detoxifying! Since I have moved to my home at the beach I have been physically active everyday and I have been living in peace and bliss. So, I wasn’t really craving my yoga practice for the physical workout or the mental clarity, anymore. Maybe this is why I was barely getting to class? I am still in love with the practice of yoga, but I wasn’t craving it day in and day out.
Now after finally getting back to a regular routine of it, I got present to this other aspect of why I want it in my life. For even though I have been keeping physically active and have mental clarity, nothing and I mean nothing does what yoga does for my body. All of the bends, twists, inversions, openers, folds, etc. are motivating my internal organs, all of them! I may not have been feeling so bad when my practice was missing, but now that I have it back, I realize that my body was not fully functioning without it.
So, for this realization I am grateful that I took my break in practice as I have grown even more appreciation for the amazingness of yoga. Can there actually be anything better than it? Physical strength, flexibility, and balance to my entire body, mental clarity, stimulates all of my internal processes, and teaches me life lessons daily? I mean, come on! Yoga, you are just too good to me.