Saturday, June 30, 2012

On the road again...


On the road again: today we drove from Uppsala to Gävle. It's a 90 min drive on a calm autobahn.


Suddenly a Chinese center was on the right side. The architecture, the things for sale and the restaurant, everything was Chinese. We had lunch there.....


Wow, the landscape is most beautiful in Gävle. We walked around, the wind blew, the sun was shining.


For tomorrow I've a plan. I want to get up early. There is a water heater in the hotel room, so that I can prepare my first coffee to get me ready for yoga. I've also enough space to role out my yoga mat. Ah, how good. Only laziness can stop me tomorrow, but this won't happen.

After 12 we have to leave the hotel. This shall be enough time for my time-consuming morning rituals.
Tomorrow it goes eastwards to a sea. 

Cold today



But who comes to Sweden because of the good weather. I changed my summer clothes for warmer ones. No sandals more, no t-shirts, but a woolen pullover and proper shoes.


It's about the landscapes one travels to Sweden. Today we'll drive to the north.


The idea comes up to look for a sauna.......hahahaha..........


Friday, June 29, 2012

Still life


Tomorrow we move on............

It was wonderful here, a bit fresh......hahaha........

Bright day at 9pm


It's almost 9pm here and bright day. I knew that the sun sets very late here in Sweden, nevertheless it's confusing. One thinks it's afternoon. 

Light a candle


Light a candle for others - a nice ritual.

How many people are covered for 5SEK.

I think it's more the idea to think of others and to care for them. Just a reminder.


In Uppsala


Siesta.
I edit my pictures.

It's the second time that we're here. But one forgets. The Gothic church here is awesome.










Thursday, June 28, 2012

Sitting at the airport...

...in Grand Café Stockholm. I invested in a wifi connection to send a message to E. He's on his way from the main station to the airport.

Just before leaving my home in Munich I realized that the battery of my mobile phone is low, I scarcely use it anymore. Good that there are so many possibilities to communicate.

I understand no word here. Swedish is so different from German language or English language. But they speak English here very well. How good.

Sweden is off the Euro-zone. Somehow I hope that the Euro-countries manage it to keep this common currency. It makes travelling so much easier.

I'm in best mood.
Not everybody likes to travel. I hear this again and again. I do.
The morning was rather hectic. To pack the suitcase lasted much longer than usual. I didn't know what to pack. I hope it's warm here, but I fear it can be fresh, too. To carry around heavy luggage is not so such fun. Waiting at the airports is doable with a kindle and wife-connection. Travelling means to get out of routines. One must improvise. The senses get new impressions. For me it's worth all the effort.

I'm so happy to be here.

Picture: from the air.



I can lift it.


I can lift my suitcase. Nevertheless to carry my PC, my camera, my yoga mat, my hand bag and my suitcase will make me sweating till I'll be at the airport.
I'm checked in already for the flight to Stockholm, Sweden. 2 hours only and I'll be there. Then I'll wait for my E, he'll come from another direction. With the rental car we'll head for Uppsalla, we'll arrive just on time for the soccer match Italy - Germany.

This morning I managed it to practice: sun salutations, standing asanas and paschimottanasana and the closing  sequence. This practice prepared me for the trip. I love this yoga practice.

It was not so easy to pack my suitcase. What to dress, what to dress. That it was so difficult tells me that some decluttering and organising is necessary. 1 blouse had to go already. I don't want to show my belly anymore. This is something for the youth. Too short is too short, away with it.

Time to go.............next post comes from Sweden......:)

A simple life is good. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

I walk the talk


Another post on being organised, decluttering, repairing.........

Yesterday I went through my storage room a step deeper.
Since the bags and yoga blankets are gone, there is more room there. The room was messy and dirty (like most storage rooms).
It took much more time to clean this room than I thought, but I could finish this work. Two and a half hour I spent there. A few steps still need to be done. The skier have to go and the skaters, too. I won't skate anymore in my life and I won't use my skis anymore. With these too things I make an exception, I want to give it to someone.
In general my recommendation is: throw things out as fast as possible. The danger that one saves things is too  big.
The window, the shelf, the floor, the door got in contact with my wet mop. It's a joy now to enter this room. 


Sometimes things need repairing. I've 3 necklaces here that are torn. As they are now they are clutter, but I want to keep them. I found a jewelery shop that repairs even pearl necklaces. This is what I'm gonna do now. I go to the shop. 


Wow, will I be happy when this is done. 


Decluttering comes first. Become essential. Good luck. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Clear your clutter


For a friend:


How everything started: One day I stumbled upon a book at amazon. It's called "Clear your clutter with Feng Shui" by Karen Kingston. Especially the reviews were funny. A woman wrote that she bought this book and then she started  throwing her things away. She gave the book to a friend and he started also throwing his things away after a few chapters of reading. Now these both friends gave the book to another friend to see when she starts throwing things out.

When a book gets me going, when a book inspires me to change my habits, I think it's a good book. I bought it.

I laughed when this happened, but after a few pages only I started throwing out things. A process started with a huge influence on my life.

I felt overwhelmed from time to time, but I didn't know that too many things could have been a reason. Karen opened my eyes. I knew I wanted to make my life simpler to feel better and the easiest thing to do was to let go of things.

It's possible to get used to a messy home. One can even get used to live in a dirty home. The worst thing that too much clutter does is, that it steals away time. Time is most precious resource. It's limited. Instead of practicing yoga or meeting friends or having sex, things keep us busy.

I learned to distinguish between:
1. decluttering
2. organizing
3. cleaning.

Clutter cannot be organized. It's a waste of time to clean it. Get rid of it. My personal tip: don't be a hero and try to donate things. This makes everything more difficult. Work fast, and get the discarded things as fast as possible to the garbage can in the backyard. Done.
Use a timer.

Letting go of things is liberating. 
It's not only that things go, it has an effect on the soul. I experience that I have enough (with less things). One goes from feeling needy to a self-confidence status of being: I have enough, is the feeling. One starts trusting again that things will get delivered when we need them.

To let things go is a beginning. One can also let go of habits, thoughts..........take your time, step by step..

Start today. You start acquiring a life-changing habit that betters life, because you've time for the activities you like to do.

It's possible to stand the created vacuum. New things will happen when room is created. Don't be afraid. Don't waste your time with caring for things. Life has more to offer. Let go.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Bring it on.


"1. Bring it on.
2. I love pain.
3. Pain sets me free"

(Location 534 from the e-book "The Tools - Transform your problems into courage, confidence, and creativity" by Barry Michels and Phil Stutz.

These three sentences get going the Hollywood actors and now me, too.

OK, I tested it today and it worked. These 3 sentences shall be thought when we procrastinate, when we avoid situations.
My sofa came into my mind. It has to go and I cling to this old dirty possibility to sit on. We, E and myself love to sit on the floor. Nevertheless, to let go needs energy.
I thought these three sentences and picked up the receiver. The business card of this Russian man who brought the mattress was handy. He picked up the phone and a few hours later he was here. A bit later as agreed, but I don't want to be so narrow-minded. He came, this is what counts, he even brought his wife with him. What a beautiful, friendly wife this man has, I thought, I don't believe it. The Russian women have the reputation to be beautiful and they obviously are. Within an hour the sofa was gone.
I cleaned the place, vacuumed.
A lot of other thiny things that add up had to be done, too. I needed a light bulb for the kitchen. I bougth it and changed it. I needed new bags for the vacuum cleaner and and and......, I don't want to be boring. Much is accomplished today, despite me feeling not so good yet, because of this cold that bothers my body.
I feel free. Yes, room is created. Less is more.

My to do lists are endless. 
This blue favorite cardigan from Escada has lost 2 buttons. Six new ones are already here.  I couldn't find exact the same ones, so I have to substitute them all. I have to sew on these new beautiful buttons when I want to dress this cardigan again..........bring it on................lol.

PS: Thank you for buying your goodies from amazon via my blog. Links can be found on the right side of this blog.

Not yet fully recovered


I wanted to decide this morning if I go to the Mysore class. I feel much better, but I'm not fully recovered from this cold. It's raining outside, the temperature dropped. It's better to stay and practice at home. I must be fit by Thursday, as I'll travel to Sweden to meet my E there. It's vacation time.

A practice is on the schedule and if it's the sun salutations. I take it easy today. Important is to get well as soon as possible. This cold must disappear.

An illness needn't mean no practice, but it can mean to modify it.

If you like to see more of my pictures, circle me on Google+. A link is on the right side of this blog. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

A home practice


My bf thought I had something serious as I didn't go to the led class.
I wanted to have it easy and the home practices are always more modest than a led class or a Mysore class. The cold is still in me. I omitted a few asanas of the second series, nevertheless I was astonished how committed I was. I even tried pincha mayurasana in the middle of the room. It was not so successful, fear came up. It would be good to learn to fall out of the pose consciously. Back bending, twists, balancing poses, forward bending poses were done, I had a balanced practice.

I'm astonished how good I feel now. The movement was excellent for the body. Not to give the best all the time is also a good exercise. I feel minimum 30% better than before the practice.

Picture: This afternoon I was at the Eisbach to shoot surfers. They also have to know how to balance. 

A yogini from Prague wrote about a workshop with Nancy Gilgoff

On a workshop with Nancy Gilgoff.

It's worth reading this post.

I was pushed.


I was pushed, too.
Months back 2 people told me more or less clearly that I shouldn't wait for adjustments, also not before karandavasana i.e.. M, my yoga teacher told me that I wouldn't progress if he helps me all the time. It disappointed me and I thought that one of the reasons why I should work alone on karandavasana was because we became so many.
A few days later another yoga teacher told me the same in a long speech. I thought she should be glad that she can adjust me as it's more interesting to give an adjustment for the more advanced poses than again and again supta kurmasana.

But when I react so emotionally, I wait and then I think twice. I know that both people have nothing against me, they were so nice to tell me their view and gave me feed-back.
Can their view help me, I wondered?

After some time I agreed and I see that I was pushed in the right direction even though I was reluctant. It's so easy to let another person do half of the work.
As a beginner in yoga, let's say someone has her first class, everything must be told. This aspirant knows nothing. The longer we practice the more we know and the more we can do on our own.

I don't wait anymore for adjustments, also not when I practice kapotasana or karandavasana. I know enough exercises that  I can do. It's true I'll progress a bit slower, but on the other hand I gained independance. Flow is not interrupted. How the asanas look like is not the only criteria how advanced someone is. I went from being needy to being content.

I always do on my own, what I can do on my own. Also here I must say, I learned that I can do more than I thought I could. Our teacher is so attentive, I still get so much even though I'm not adjusted in kapotasana each time. Working alone on kapotasana or karandavasana is possible.

In class many yoginis wait for adjustments. Some wait so long as if it's a birth right to get an adjustment. The teacher is often busy with other yoginis, sometimes he might not have seen who was waiting longer and he adjusts someone else first. The longer one waits, the stiffer the body becomes again. Impatience comes up. A yogini also exercises contentment, I think then when I see this.

The performance of the asanas is only one criteria how advanced someone is.
The attitude, contentment, concentration are other criteria.

...................

My body felt it already during the practice on Friday. I felt weak and yesterday I got ill: a bit fever, a blocked nose visited me. I slept the entire day. Only during soccer I was hanging on the sofa. Also during the night I slept. Hahahaha, I dreamed of Mr Iyengar, he was in a very good mood and we were searching a place where we could do yoga......hahaha......
I won't go to the led class today. Something softer is on the schedule.


Saturday, June 23, 2012

A relaxing day


Not voluntarily. The nose is blocked, I feel weak.

I hope I'll be fit by tomorrow afternoon.

Time to go horizontal again. 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Drishti


Today during the Mysore class I looked around, not for fun or because I was bored. I was looking for a yogini who could help me with supta vajrasana. 5 yoginis had there eyes closed!!!!!

I remembered what Sharath said during one of the conferences in Gokulam, India: "I've never found a yoga style that is like Ashtanga yoga. Alone drishti has changed my life.Other yoga styles don't have this." (quoted from my memory).
I understood at once what he meant.

Drishti means we have the eyes open and gaze towards a point: feet, hand, side, nose, third eye. The eyes remain calm.
This has an effect on our mind. When the eyes don't move the mind becomes calm, too. We look outside. We don't look inside to observe our thoughts and dreams or whatever issues come up. We learn to focus on something else but our self-made problems.

This makes a difference.

Ashtanga yoga is a demanding practice. Many asanas require years to master. But everybody can open her eyes.

A yogini who practices with awareness and who has progressed a lot in the last months (my view of course) realized that I needed this adjustment. She adjusted 2 more people today. Many of the others were dreaming with closed eyes. I wonder why.

One gives away a powerful tool if one neglects the dristhi.
Never look in the direction you don' t want to drive, I heard from my driver instructor, when he prepared me for the night drive. One tends to look towards the lights of the car that comes on the other lane. This provokes that one drives in this direction, too. An accident is very likely.

So many life events are easier to handle if we focus on looking towards the direction we want to go.
Next time focus on drishti.


This morning I practiced second series. That's all. I had no more the energy to do the 7 asanas of the third series. I felt mentally totally weak. The body was slippery from sweating so much in addition. Now I know that it was not only the mind that was unwilling, I feel a cold insight. I'm sipping hot tea and relax.

Picture 1: A vegan pear cake can be seen. Finally I can buy cakes without feeling bad. I stopped at the Yam deli on my way home.
Picture 2: It will be a soccer night tonight. Greece - Germany will play. 

Pictures of the last days


In the evening or at night it rains these days. Then it cools down. 2 days ago it rained so much that my neighbours, me too, stepped on the balconies to see this spectacle.


Another lunch from the new Yam Deli can be seen on the picture. This tiny restaurant seems to become a meeting point for yogis and yoginis.

I need another coffee. 
Yesterday I was mentally busy with my photo session with this praliné dealer from Maroc. Before the session he agreed that I could show the pictures. The photo session was great and I took a lot of really excellent photos. He loved them, too. Nevertheless the Email conversation got more and more aggressive. He thought I could sell the picture. Nobody would buy them, but him. I get to the point: I fear he had a tiny bit more expectation of our meeting than I had. Shall I complain that men are behind me? No I don't. Next time I must get signed the model contract. Then I can use the pictures for my portfolio. Such a pity that they slumber now in a box.

Next photo session is tomorrow with a former colleague of mine. I'm looking forward to meet her. I'm excited. If she will sign the model contract? Shall I ask her?
I've good ideas for our session.

Time to prepare for yoga: second series today in a Mysore class.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Munich has a new address



Munich has a new address: Augustenstraße 5. 

Since about 3 weeks we've a new vegan restaurant here. H. a yogini told me about the new location. After an excellent practice this morning I thought, I'd pamper myself with eating out. Why not trying something new. 




Wow, it's such a nice café, restaurant. I even met R. there (not on the picture), the owner of this new restaurant and the owner of the Yam-yoga studio. She knows that I'm an "Ashtanga addict".

I love the atmosphere there. One can look outside. In the middle and on the front side is a huge table. It's very easy to get in contact if one likes it. 


 My first surprise when I met vegan people was that they are less preachers or health apostles, but gourmets. Look at my lunch. Shall the pictures speak. What else can I add.

I'm happy: we become more.


PS: They also have delicious cakes.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

They are winners


"They are winners," the coach of the German natianal soccer team said after one match of the European Cup and leaned back in his chair.

He explained what he meant with it. They (the soccer players) don't give up when things get tough. They stay optimistic. Injuries or goals of the other team doesn't change this approach. Setbacks have no influence on the behavior. The success is built on strong roots. These roots are  positive thoughts: It's doable, they think and they give their best.

I think when practicing Ashtanga yoga long enough we build this roots, this conviction that much much more is doable than we might think first.

Having this written down, I realize again that yoga is a practice for the body AND the mind.

Starting with the asanas is best advice. Practicing daily leads to success, it leads to a strong and flexible body and a concentrated and optimistic mind. More and more poses will be possible with time. This is convincing.

Durvasana is on the picture: This pose is 2 weeks old. It's a balancing pose and it opens the hips. If you don't understand a pose, think of your hips to get to a aha-moment. It has potential. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday morning


The soccer match last night pleased me.
My yoga practice before the soccer match pleased me, too.

It was clear that I'd go to the led class. When I was there, I thought: What am I doing here? The sun salutations exert myself. We do more as usual. 5 Sun saluts A and 6 sun saluts B. Except the hero poses at the end the standing poses were easy-going. Then I loved my practice. Body and mind were a unit. Thinking stopped. I listened to my breath. How good that I'm here, I thought. Later this thought changed again to: only 3 more poses. The closing sequence is relaxing and I can smell the end already. I sweat a lot these days when I practice. I detox, I think. For me the sweating is also a sign that I'm able to get closer to my limits. This ability develops with time, if one practices correctly: Focusing on the breath, engaging the bandhas and muscles.

Today second series. This seems to be trick: practice second series if you think primary is difficult. Primary will seem to be easy then. I got better in second series, too. With the third series poses I will know at the end what I've done.

After the match yesterday they interviewed one of our soccer players. He was so tired that he could scarcely talk. "I'm so tired," he said and the spectators had to wait for his comment on the match. It was not sure if he'd fall asleep in the middle of the sentence.
I won't go that far. To take it easy shall be my approach. Being concentrated is important for me. This all is enough for a Monday morning.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

A relaxed Saturday



 I even cooked something for myself yesterday: Asparagus with an Asian inspired dressing. The dessert, chocolate soy pudding with strawberries was delicious, too.

You can find the recipe on my vegan blog.



Saturday is my yoga free day. I need that time for other things. It relaxes me much more to have more time than to practice yoga. Things get done, or at least I've the time to initiate things. Yesterday I was for instance in the bicycle shop round the corner. My bicycle needs a check and it needs to be cleaned as it was in the cellar for 2 years. It makes no sense to take it to the shop before Thursday, I've learned. To find this out took me perhaps 15 min. I had the time and the energy to find this out.
I had time for photography and I worked on my project "flat".

A day off keeps the motivation high.

Today a led class is on the schedule: Primary. My focus will be the vinyasas. At the end I want to give my best for urdhva dhanurasana. 

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Oh, oh, I feel my hips


Yesterday I went to a Mysore class. This was good. A big thank you to all the yoginis you made the way to the shala. My practice wouldn't have been so intensive as it was, if I practiced alone. The longer one practices, the closer one can get to one's limits. For the time being, I reach my limits. Second series and 7 asanas of third series exhausts me. I know it can only get better.

Durvasana is possible. Not that I stand upright. But I can balance, even when I do this pose alone. It shall stretch my body, especially the hips and it does it. This morning I feel my hips again even though I practiced with care. The leverage is very strong when standing up. I wasn't for 5 breath in that pose. I didn't count. I was so busy to balance and to stabilize myself.

The big disappointment comes when I practice  back bending, urdhva dhanurasana, but also the other back bending asanas. Urdhva dhanurasana is almost impossible after the third asanas series. I consider to give them some attention today in the evening, when the body is soft. Back bending is my weakness.
I asked M to help me. After the 7 headstands I did viparita dandasana  I was recommended to add this pose to open the chest. I have to face my fears to fall over here. I've to fall over controlled. This might really make me courageous to do pincha mayurasana in the middle of the room, because I make the experience, I survive  when I fall. I also don't injure myself.

Patience is needed. Age plays a role here. My body learns slower, I compensate with patience. Yes, I have patience with myself. For me it's more important to practice daily and safely than to reach the goals fast.

My life approaches more and more the lives of the daughters of Krichnamacharya. In the movie "Der atmende Gott" described they their days: In the morning they did asanas for hours. Then they rested. Later they practiced pranayama and meditation. This is perfect. The practice has an influence how one feels. It calms. To jump into a hectic life after a yoga practice feels artificial.
I love to add pranayama and meditation.

I napped yesterday, I bathed, I watched soccer. The first match was funny due to the rain in the beginning and the fans who danced full of joy. The second match Sweden/England was exciting due to the many goals.

Today I work on my project "flat".
And I love to have more time for photography.
The sun is out already. I smile.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Oh, an intensive practice, how nice


This was good. Indeed. I practiced primary with some extras. Especially the forward split got attention.  I practiced it while standing after utthita eka padasana. It's called trivikramasana then. And I practiced it after supta parsvasahita. Then it's called hanumanasana.

In general I'd say my concentration got better. I stay on the mat. One reason is that I want to bring it behind me, not in a hurry, but to be on the mat for hours because of too many breaks doesn't convince me anymore.  Whatever helps is allowed.

1. What gets attention grows.
2. What gets no attention dries out or it gets worse. 

Sometimes only attention is already enough to get better at anything. Example: As soon as I move my attention to my breath it gets deeper.

What next?
I feel like strolling around.


How was yesterday?



Thank you Tim Gunn. He was it who motivated me to go through my wardrabe yesterday. I felt strong. "I have everything, I have even too much of everything" were the accompanying thoughts. I was able to let go of a Mt Hood of clothes. All the old-fashioned suits had to go. Dresses I don't wear had to go. First I took everything out of the wardrobe and then I put back what I want and love and wear and what fits. The rest had to go. I don't wear mini skirts anymore. Some pair of trousers were too large and never fitted. Away with it.
"I have enough" is a good thought when discarding things. People collect because they feel needy. "I could need it one day", this thought is a trap. Having too many things prevents us from living, because we've to care for our things. Things need attention, they want to be cleaned i.e.
When I open my wardrobe now the clothes have more room. They are not pressed against each other. When I want to dress something I don't have to iron it because it has wrinkles.
Quickly I took the discarded clothes to the garbage can. It's dangerous to keep them a min longer than necessary. It's possible that I go throw them again and put things back.

I've another wardrobe. The motivation is high that I go through this one, too. It's so liberating to let go.

Project "flat" makes progress. 

Yesterday the Polish man came with the floor patterns. The floor to floor carpet has to go.

- The next step is to make a decision which one I like and to forward this info to the Polish man.

- Another step is to get rid of the sofa. I don't know why I've difficulties to let go of the sofa. After more than 15 years it's broken, dirty. It was E's idea not to substitute it anymore. We sit on the floor usually. Yeah, we lean against the sofa mainly. I love to sit on the floor, because then I can sit in lotus pose. E also loves to sit on the floor, not in lotus pose, lol. We call it "Uli-style". Uli was a  friend, Indian lover, who passed away some years ago. Much too young he was when he passed away with 60. He refused to take medicines for his heart, he was convinced about spices. One day his girl-friend (30 years younger) returned home and there he lied on the kitchen floor. Dead.

So why do I cling to that old sofa? I don't know. It has to go, it has to go. If I miss it, we can buy another one.

To let go is an ongoing process. There are times where this process requires more attention. It's amazing how liberated I always feel when I let go of things. Simplicity is a key word for me.

Today primary is on the schedule. My hips needed another rest day. Durvasana was a most intensive stretch.  I'm not at all disappointed that I didn't practice yesterday. I feel so relieved how much I accomplished yesterday.
Today I'm back on the mat.

PS: Thank you for buying your things at amazon via my blog. Links are on the right side of this blog.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Calves


I so hope that the calves of our German soccer team are OK for tonight. There was some rumor that one of the youngsters had issues with one calve. Let's stay optimistic. There are many factors why a team scores and wins. A bit of luck is one.

Good luck for tonight.

I slept too long


I slept very good, too long. Since 20 min I should be on the road already, but I sit here, not yet dressed. I need another coffee and I had no breakfast so far. It's rainy here and cold. June is a cold month in Germany, another cold month. When I open the balcony door to get an idea what to dress to feel warm, so fresh air comes in, that I close the balcony door faster than I opened it. It's so comfortable within my 4 walls.

Today I practice at home. 
I don't want to hurry. If I'd dress now to go I had to dress fast, I had to leave my home without breakfast, I had to hurry to the public transportation. My practice is so long I would have the feeling that I had to hurry through the series. In 5 min the Mysore class starts. It shouldn't be today. I'm sipping my freshly brewed black coffee. I'm looking forward to a relaxed home practice. I also have the feeling I need a very relaxed practice today.

It's so good that I make progress in my  projects. It cheered me up the entire day yesterday, that we have this new mattress now. It was so necessary to let go of this old trampolin. Shall new tears, fresh sweat spoil this new mattress in the decade to come.
Project "flat" is not yet finished. I regret that the Polish man didn't answer my Email. He seemed to be so reliable. The Russian man from yesterday wanted double as much money for the same work. It will not be so easy to find someone who is competent, has time and a reasonable price.
Sometimes a day without yoga is so good. So much can be done then.

Yesterday I felt my hips. When I lifted my legs it slightly hurt. I blame durvasana for it. It's an intensive stretch, I'm not used to practice. I'll practice with much care today. To stand up with one leg behind the head is a huge step forward. I think my body needed even a rest day yesterday. Today my hips feel better.
My hips were the second reason why it was good not to practice.

Sports rejuvenates the cells, I read yesterday. To stay fit one has to move. It needn't to be Ashtanga yoga, but not to move at all is not an alternative. People who do sports reduce the sick days 50%. Imagine.

Time to move on. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Mission accomplished


I smile.
I'm happy.
I've a new place to relax.
(What else is a new mattress.)


"You make me happy."


Me: "You make me happy."
He: "I hear this often."

Many of us are unable to do little technical things, so little repair remain undone. This I heard between the lines. I also have no drill machine. This man who brought this mattress offered his help to fix the bed again. Not for free, which is OK. He was prepared and fast the work was done to my satisfaction.
My bf has no time for such activities and I'm unable to do it. Lol. This means I must delegate.
The man was from Russia and an autodidact. He had built a house, he told me to assure that he's expertise. I trust him. If someone is good at German language, I pretend that he/she is good at other things, too.

What a relief. My mattress is not on a broken bed now, but on a fixed one.
The man also sold me a cover for the mattress, for half the price as usual. It makes sense, lol.

I wonder if this is a Champagne day today? I've always one in the fridge.
Not sure, it's so great to have a clear mind.

Is that a great feeling to get things done, however. 

Knocked out


There was a sign on every door in the area where I live. It informed the neighborhood that there will be noise during one of the next nights, because it's necessary to work on that constructions round the corner. This noise was yesterday. When my bf sleeps he sleeps, but I woke up several times It was very loud. In the morning I felt knocked out. I didn't get up. What a luxury. But I don't want to sleep so long usually, because in the evening I want to have the feeling that I've accomplished something. All my activities need time, much time.

Yesterday was such a day where I couldn't say in the evening what I've done the entire day. Ashtanga yoga, yes, but what else? I picked up 2 books. I sat in a café, reading them. I watched soccer. This cannot be everything, but it was so.

My intensive Ashtanga yoga practice really pushes me to get better and better in organizing my life. Not always I'm satisfied with the results, but I get better. It's easy to get up in the mornig in order to be on time in a company, waiting for lunch, and then waiting till it's 6pm to go home. Being alone means one has to motivate oneself. One must decide almost everything alone. The impulses must come from inside. This is a challenge.

Accepting that there are ups and downs is part the skill "being organized".

Today a new mattress will get delivered. I wanted a new one since 10 years and today this thing gets delivered. This makes me laugh. It was so easy. I thought I'd have a lot of difficulties to make a decision which one to buy as there are sleeping concepts that one buys nowadays and not a simple mattress.
I'll be alone tonight as my E is on a business trip. I regretted this, but he consoled me: then you can test both sides. Yes, there is a difference between the sides. His side is harder than mine. The sales person convinced us that this is the best for us. He looked at us and guessed our weight. It's obvious that my tall bf weights much more than me (double of my weight, psssssssst.). So tonight I'll test both sides. I'm amused.

25 min are over.
Time to move on. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Lousy


This morning I only wanted to bring it behind me. I was stiff. I sweated like hell, I detoxed so to say, hahaha. The consequence was that my leg didn't stay behind my back because it was sliding sidewards. My t-shirt was cut perhaps a bit too generous. It seems to be good to have some cotton over the shoulder. Somehow I managed it to do all the poses.
If I practiced at home I'd given up. In the group of committed yogis and yoginis I was able to schlepp myself from asana to asana.

To open my hips I was adviced to do skandasana and durvasana after kasyapasana. I was so afraid of durvasana (leg behind head and then standing up), but it feels good. I simply had forgotten to be afraid. I was so astonished that I should do the pose, that my feelings and opinions were somewhere else. The challenge of this pose is to balance. I'll practice it close to a wall.

I'm thankful for every feedback. The breath and bandhas are the keys for me to make any progress. I can relate to it and I'll work on it.

So and tomorrow is a new day. My practices are still very volatile.

Tomorrow I'll do the same like today: second series and the 7 third series asanas. No pictures. This would spoil my practice.

Picture: It's taken in Portland 2006.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Moods


Also this Sunday I was not so in the mood to go to the led class. Shall really a mood decide if I go or not, I wondered. Of course not. I stopped the inner discussion and packed my handbag. I imagined who will come and that I love to see the other yogis and yoginis. I went.

As usual I had a very good practice.

I practice when I'm in the mood and when I'm not in the mood.
I practice in winter and when it rains.
I practice alone and in groups.
I practice when I feel stiff and when I feel flexible.
Because I know it's so good for me to have my daily dose of Ashtanga yoga.

Picture: public viewing, taken on my way home. I watch now Italy - Spain. It's a thriller. 

Saturday, June 09, 2012

So late already


It's Saturday and my yoga free day. The mind wants often more at least a tiny practice, but the body is the brake. The mind has another speed than the body. The mind can jump around and doing handstands and drop backs,while the body is still relaxing on the sofa and even too lazy to get up to make another coffee.

This gap is not satisfying.

In yoga we bring body and mind together. The mind shall become slower and focused, concentrated, the body has to move. Lol.

And I'll move to the grocery store as soon as I've finished this post. I'll cook today and I need ingredients. A light meal is planned: asparagus with an exotic sauce and a banana dessert.


Friday, June 08, 2012

Must have been a misunderstanding


This morning I approached M and I told him that it was OK, if I wouldn't practice the third series asanas. He couldn't remember to have said anything alike and I should go on practicing them.
Hahaha, perhaps the wish to stop practicing these challenging asanas was the father of this thought.

He helped me today and gave me tips for the big five. I need more strength in the arms to balance. When I'm more stable then I can work on opening the hips. Oh, I'm so motivated again, also to practice the 5 devil ones. In fact only the 2 first ones seem to be so out of reach.

My practice was detoxing. I sweat more and more. I think this is because I manage it to get closer and closer to my limits.

After our practice I talked with a yogini. During the last months she tried to be in handstand for 20 breaths. This is a good idea. This strengthens the arms and as she said, one get used to be in that position. She too is above 50. Aren't we all a tiny bit crazy?


Thursday, June 07, 2012

What an awesome practice


Yes, yes, I practiced. Primary was on the schedule with some extras like hanumanasana (forward split). I gave energy to the back bending asana "urdhva dhanurasana" at the end. This pose suffers. I was able to drop back, but I did it only once.
That I'm not yet able to jump backwards comme il faut, drives me crazy. Good is that I think I know now what needs to happen next. The body must shift forwards and the back must round. I get closer and closer.

With primary and second series I've a lot of asanas. One can practice them so and so. There are variations of the vinyasas, also here one can challenge oneself. The following topics become more meaning:
- concentration
- the breath
- meditation
- healthy eating
- awareness (on and off the mat)

I also love to work on my weakness: back bending. It was indeed very good today. I did preparation asanas like ustrasana. Whatever helps, is allowed.

Oh, the sun can be seen through the curtains, time to prepare for strolling around with E.




Fine tuning


Time: a favorite topic.

Time is running faster and faster, it seems so.
More and more I realize it's limited (for everybody).
I've so many interests and I want to have time for everything.
My life must be organized well when I want to do so much yoga as I do now.
Simplicity is a keyword.

Today I went through my handbags. 3 had to go, 15 are still in my wardrobe. The above one is a souvenir from my grandma, I want to keep it.
Having less things makes life easier.

But I wanted to talk about the fine tuning of how I use my timer these days, when I work.
Thanks to a dear friend I discovered the pomodoro technique. In short, one can buy a pomodoro, a timer that runs 25 min. This is the time one shall work on a project/task whatever. Then a break is recommended before one starts again to focus on something for 25 min. After 1 hour a longer break is foreseen. Using this timer always gives me a feeling of having accomplished something when I had run it once or more often. It bettered my life.

- The pomodoro is rather loud. It makes tick tack and at the end the ring tone is very loud. This is very good when I listen to music as well. When I do chores I've the radio on most of the time. I cannot overhear this loud tone when the 25 min are over, how good.
- For my intellectual work like reading, writing this loud tick tack disturbs me. I use my meditation timer now. It has no sound at all.
- 25 min are a perfect time to accomplish something and it's not too long. Why not being flexible from time to time. My experience is that it's good to set consciously an end to most activities. A brainstorming activity might last 10 min, why not setting the timer for 10 min. Why not being flexible.

Working within a time frame intensifies this time. It's such a simple method and so effective. For those who want to get things done, I recommend: try it.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Flexible


Today I went home from the Mysore class and I was tired. I got close to my limits during my practice. That I'm able to do this is a sign that I practice dedicatedly for years, almost a decade. I practiced second series and the 5 asanas of third series. Afterwards comes urdhva dhanurasana, the back bending. It got worse. I blame the 5 last poses for this. M even mentioned that I should consider to drop them and to focus more on back bending.

I trust M 100%. He's experienced. He supports me. He never takes anything away from me, by far not. He realizes, like me, too, that these additional asanas have a desastrous influence on my back bending, which is my weak point. I even consider to  ask him if this wouldn't be the best to focus for the next months on back bending instead of the new asanas. First and second series give me a balanced practice.

I also know now what I've to intensify: forward split, leg behind head to mention only 2 points.

This will give me intensive, but more relaxed practices. I've so much to learn even in primary. I know what I don't exercise I won't learn, but sometimes profound exercise is simply better.