Thursday, January 11, 2018

It was great

Today I could move into poses in a way which has not been possible for a very long time, almost over a year. Trikonasana was such a pose. I see this as a good sign. Perhaps my pain system has unlearned to produce pain out of fear.

Practicing asanas feels good. The inner organs get a massage. Doing inversions relieves the heart.

Lately I realized again how important it is to develop a 'I can' attitude. It's too easy to say I'm old now, it's too late. Injuries are an excuse, too. The consequences if one gives in to these lazy excuses are awful. Life becomes boring, life aggravates with every year. It can mean to schlepp oneself through decades. One gives up one dream after the other. The less challenged the body and the mind is, the less it's able to do.

A few days back I could even move my legs behind my head.
Today back bending felt excellent.

One must find out what works. This is very individual.

After the back bending asanas I wanted to release my back. Side splits work for me. I sit in front of our shelf to have resistance. When I move the body closer to the shelf the legs move apart from each other. As crazy as it is, this relaxes the back muscles. After this exercise I'm able to stand up absolutely pain free and fresh.

Amazing how good I feel. I feel so optimistic.

Tomorrow is Friday and I'll practice primary.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

My new year starts today

It is difficult to practice when travelling. I'm prepared, that is my yoga mat travels always with me. But when the rooms are not warm enough, I don't want to stretch. These days I want to feel unobserved when I'm on the mat. I want to focus on my body without any distraction.

Last night I couldn't sleep. It was the early morning, when I finally slept. Of course I didn't get up at 6 am. I can also practice yoga in the afternoon. The body is more flexible later of the day. Shall the beginning of the year be soft.

It feels good to be at home again. Almost two days we were in the car and my lower back didn't complain. This is a good omen.

It's Thursday today and back bending is on the schedule.
I'm so motivated to practice as I know that the practice betters my life. I exercise to focus on the breath and not on the stories that the mind creates all day long. To stop thinking gives so much relief. To interrupt the stories that are created by the mind all day long need a break. Stories are nothing but stories. We confuse them with the truth.
To practice yoga, to breath, to gaze at my toes or at another point of my body, reminds me to bring the mind to the presence. All stories are fiction. They might bring joy or the opposite, but they are stories. To practice yoga reminds me of that fact.

Contentment can be found when breathing consciously. It can be found when everything is calm and peaceful.

Monday, January 01, 2018

2018 will be a back bending year

I went out to stroll around. The destination is often the wild lake that is very close. Three boys were there. I greeted them with a 'hello'. I asked them if they were up till midnight. Yes, they were, I looked into three pairs of sparkling eyes. We were up till 3 am, they explained. So much enthusiasm radiated from their words.  I remembered that I wanted to go to bed at 10 pm yesterday.
To stay up till after midnight costs nothing. I've forgotten how much joy it can bring.

This enthusiasm of these boys was so contagious. Don't forget to this feeling, I thought. After this encounter I searched  a tree for my first back bendings of the year 2018. Here we go.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Last yoga practice, last dinner, last hours 2017...

Bye, bye 2017.

I practiced in the morning. It was a great practice and exhausted me.

We had a very delicious dinner later. The chef in the Indian restaurant made it possible to offer me a vegan menu.

I'm ready to take  pictures of the fireworks here. My theory: The smaller the village, the more money  people spend on fireworks.

Tomorrow I'll get up early for a walk around the close sea.

I wish everybody a great evening.

I'm looking forward to 2018. All the best for you for the coming year. Take care.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Feeling ready for the new year and 10.000 steps

Oh my, it's time-consuming to walk 10.000 steps every day. It brings also joy to discover new locations. Sometimes cats cross the path. Getting out of the house is an opportunity to experience the winter. Cold weather can be so refreshing. One must only dress according to the temperature, then it's great to be outside.

Especially between Christmas and New Year it feels good to walk.

I somehow wait till it's the new year. I stand in the front line already. I feel ready for 2018.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Goals 2018

Without doubt, those who write down their goals are more likely to reach them than those who have not written them down. It's not only that it's necessary to write them down in order to be successful, one must know them by heart.
The majority might not have goals at all. They might think that their lives shall not get worse. Why not.

I love to have goals, because they give my life fire, energy, a reason to get out of bed. If you have an interest, you are more likely interesting for other people, too. This again makes life more fun.

I don't want to have the daily meals as the highlights in my life. Point. Not with 59, not with 70, not with 80 and years to come.

To write down goals is the first step. One of the main mistakes here is that one might write down the goals, but that was it. A few months later one cannot remember anymore what the goals were. Can you remember your goals of the beginning of 2017? I can't. As I know me I surely wanted to learn a few asanas and to lose weight. Haha...... but I'm not sure.

More than a decade ago I read a book by Raymond Hull 'How to get what you want'. He recommends to write down the goals daily. Then it's impossible to forget them. To write them down and not to work towards these goals is strange, so it's very likely that one also works on these goals.

There are rules how to formulate them: 
S    smart
M   measurable
A    action oriented /accepted
R   reasonable
T    time bound

A few weeks back I searched an empty journal here. I found a journal in which I had written already. Every page was filled with the same goals. It was the year 2004, the journal ended in 2006. I had reached goal Number 1. This was the only goal that was measurable in that list. Curious enough what it has been? I wanted to pass a test, I wanted to become a senior accountant. It's one of the most difficult tests in Germany and most of the aspirants fail. When I say that only 40% who strive to pass the test, get it, the number is high. Most give up before passing the test. Most accountants who want to pass the test fail several times. It's allowed to repeat it twice. I had to repeat the test and I had to pass the oral examination, too. But I did it.

My method was successful.

The other goals were not precise enough. I wrote: I want to be able to cook delicious vegan meals. How do I know when this goal is reached? A possible answer could be to have a cooking book of my own recipes. 40 recipes might be enough, 10 for each season. But this is the work when writing down goals. How do I know when I've reached it.
What are the steps towards that goal?

Today I have another day alone. Nothing and nobody distracts me. I will think about my goals 2018. It's an important activity. My time is limited on this earth. How do I want to spend it?

The number one goal will be focused on photography.

Yet  goal number 2 is Ashtanga yoga. 

The goal: 
I want to master the vinyasas. 
I want to stand up from urdhva dhanurasana and 
I want to master kapotasana.

The key words.
- vinyasas
- urdhva dhanurasana
- kapotasana
These goals can only be reached when I practice daily. I will work on a method how to learn it. I joined already a Facebook group on core strength training.
Yes, these goals bring me joy and energy. To think of this goal gives my life color.
Every month I want to check the progress.
Professionals check their progress much more often, but once a months is enough for me.

More important than reaching this goal is to practice safely. I want to avoid a setback re my back. Work smarter than harder is also true for Ashtanga yoga.

I'm curious?
Do you have goals re Ashtanga yoga?

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Getting up early

It always seems to me that I have more time when I get up early. Early means 5 am or 6 am, rather 6 am.

The time for oneself must have priority. It's so easy to let time slip away. During the first hours of the day I'm usually fit and awake. They are the best hours for a most important person in my life: myself.

I gave my pain system time to reboot. I paused.
Back pain is almost forgotten. Almost. Sometimes when I make an awkward movement I feel a sudden pain in the lower back. But that's it.

I reboot my active life, too.
There will be time for Ashtanga yoga in the morning. Getting up earlier is the secret.

Oh my, this has been a bumpy road with that back pain during the last one and a half years. It was so frustrating, demotivating, sad.
We have to move if we don't want that life aggravates when getting older.

Our body and mind is worth every effort. It's a joy to have it when healthy, it becomes a burden when ill and injured and untrained.

I collect all my willpower and motivation to restart again with all my energy.

This man on the picture was far above 60. I talked to him on the beach between Tel Aviv and Jaffa this month. He performed acrobatic swings on that bar. He had so much joy doing it. Age is only an excuse.

I must alter my clothes when I want them to fit. I also must alter my practice to my needs. The alteration may not be huge. But I know that I will adjust the yoga practice. I know my body better and better. I learned about learning. I want this practice to be healthy and not overly ambitious. I want to challenge myself, I don't want to be bored, but it must be safe, too.

Let's keep practicing.