As the warmth slowly begins to creep back into Oregon & I have already seen the first Spring blooms (!), I realize I have entered a new phase in my yoga teaching career: not teaching as much. This is strange for someone who went hard even during the pandemic, offering Zoom yoga classes every chance I got, or taking almost every teaching opportunity that came my way.
For the first time since beginning to teach yoga since 2015, I am TAKING MORE YOGA CLASSES as a student. It’s so strange, I recall teaching 15 classes a week but never practicing myself except to do handstand or downward facing dog at home. How else does this feel, to be a student again? It’s blissful & amazing. Is it anything else? Yes. It’s like coming home. I don’t have the words to describe how it feels to be back in the studio more on the mat, me just sitting there in the crowd, practicing & silent. Being anonymous. It’s amazing & long overdue.
I didn’t expect it, nor plan it. I got (another different) full time job and I work on the side another gig as well, so I’m only teaching 2 classes a week. There’s traffic on the way home from my full time & there happened to be a Core Power close by, so I thought, why not? My goal was to go once a week, then it felt manageable to go twice a week, & now some weeks I go 3 times. I transitioned to a different hot yoga studio a little further away. It reminds me of how it feels to have that discipline, to remember to get my mat & clothes in the car, to drive a little further, to show up for a class when I don’t want to. It reminds me of the magic of being a yoga student. It reminds me of my first love: YOGA. I’m so grateful for yoga & it’s roots. I’m just so, so grateful. I feel better too, physically. I’m healthier than I’ve been for a long while. My injuries whine at me occasionally, but they don’t yell. I am eating healthier. I am sleeping better. I am drinking more water.
It’s also been really unusual for me because I am a die hard vinyasa/Iyengar junkie & not just much of what yoga I’ve been doing, but ALL of the yoga what I’ve been doing is Bikram based. Who knew. Today I went to a 90 minute class & didn’t do one chaturanga. I don’t think the Bikram is sustainable for me long term, but it feels right for now. It’s still really cold here & the heat is divine. There’s a really good ramen place next door & I’ll hit a class & get some good ramen after. I’ll go home, rest, read to my son, & drink lots of water. On good days I’m asleep at 9:30.
It’s been difficult for me to prioritize my health these last 2 years. Running was my thing in 2020 & rowing was my thing in 2021. Both left me with injuries that die away when I stop those activities, only to come back again on a hard hike. I haven’t felt like restricting my eating so my body has changed. I haven’t felt like really worrying about either of these two things so I just stopped. I would pick up a routine every now & again, but would just stop all over again. I haven’t felt motivated. I have also been completely fine with that. My career has taken the front seat & I have had to pour a ton of energy into that. I just didn’t have the capacity for anything else for a while. 3 years ago when I taught yoga all the time, I would go to the Y on a regular basis and work out for TWO HOURS. It was insane. Not bad exactly, but I just am not there at this time in my life. Yes, I know I did also admit to going to a 90 minute yoga class today, so I’m not far off, I’m just now back where I was 3 years ago.
I’m okay with that. I’m okay with yoga being my main physical activity again. This may change again someday, but it feels right for now. I also feel inspired to just FEEL GOOD. To smell good things, to eat good, to do things that are positive, to maybe book a massage soon, to treat myself. I encourage you to do the same! Treat yo’self! I also am interested in stepping out of my comfort zone in pursuit of this. Believe it or not, getting an actual massage scares the sh$t out of me. Should I do it anyway? I encourage you also to take baby steps. Just like I started with committing to one yoga class a week. It doesn’t have to be a lot. Do something small to NOURISH yourself today & I promise I will too.
FARM YOGA is back this Summer at a new location. We are thinking of beginning sometime in May. It will be more towards the Sherwood area off of Parrett Mountain. It has views. It’s new. Message me & I will keep you informed & you can always stay updated by following @shelteryoga on Instagram or Facebook. Follow me on Facebook too, Liz Brower, the Liz with the arm tattoo mirror picture!
Have an amazing Spring. Go lay in the sun & drink some ice water. Treat yo’self.