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Snakes and Ladders October 3, 2013

Filed under: Health Hopes,Nutrition,Yoga — Working From Bed Productions @ 5:11 pm
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Tremendously hard to type/write and get out of my mind right now. I have seething anger pumping through at this moment and clearly thinking outside my current internal turmoil state, seems very much like I’m making it all worse. By beginning to blog, is my attempt at trying to find some sort of rhythmn again. I once was lost than I was found and then I got fucking lost again, pretty much sums up where life is at for me these days. Sometime ago I had purpose in healing myself through yoga. It happened in a beautiful and natural way, which is always a sign for me that I am on a right and proper path.

Recently I began to question, what happened, exactly? How did I leave a practice and a state of health and wind up in this my here and now of miserableness? It was by no means due to a lack of love, ironically as it turns out it was percisely for this reason, except the love wasn’t for me.  I reached a point in my practice that had far surpassed what I ever thought I could do, so what was it?  Well the truth is that inspite of ultimately being the one who fell off, I didn’t do so consciously. My eldest child was officially moving out ( at 17 not 23, makes a difference in this story I believe ) and with this decision some obscure, from left field emotional chinook, took me over and out. I went into planning mode for him, his needs etc.. remembering at one point thinking “shit, I haven’t been at yoga for two days, it’s o.k I’ll go Friday”. Within this time I lost a little part- time gig which helped to subsidize my yoga cost as well as this this big move out West. Due to this sudden unemployment and utter frustration and anger towards the person who hired me (unrealistically financially speaking, it turns out..gee thanks), I began going inwards. Pretty much from May till now October 3rd, I have done very little yoga, gained back at least 15 pounds and wake up and deal with a litany of pains throughout my entire body everyday. I literally am unable to hold a coffee cup for the first few hours of the morning. Part of the RA are flaring up in my body where they never had before….I illustrate this due to the sheer amazement on what one can experience doing Yoga with chronic pain and what can happen when you don’t.

Lastly, I consume more red wine than I ever have in my life, so not overly shocking that I’m a tad pissed off right now at myslef. I went last week to do my practice for the first time in months. it felt weird of course but emotionally I basically felt good, not having any anxiety or huge expectations. After attempting to ‘slide in’ and pretty much hide out in the back of studio, my ever knowning teacher sensed this and called me up to join the rest of the flock in the front of the room, instructing me to do what I could do, so I did. I was initially happy, for my little body memory bank seemed to re-open and off I went. I stopped a few times, looking around for some help in what to do next, but alas no one came. Shrugging it off I continued as best I could. The first sign that it had been awhile was the weakness I felt in my arms. Other than feeling little to no pain for good periods of time, what I LOVED about Yoga was the strength that it gave me and the confidence to do activities I hadn’t done in many moons. Never have I felt that physically strong before, even  in my youth, never liked that..So I adjusted, doing less chaturangas, concentrating more on finishing the practice than remembering each bit. I finished, changed and went home, not feeling anything either way. During the wee hours of the next day into early morning + three more days, I experienced pain like nothing else. Someone recently described RA pain like having a hot ‘poker’ jammed into your joints creating unbelievable amounts of searing pain.

What this attempt of mine, to re-start my yoga practice left me with at that time was this little diddy. “Ya, so your fucked and gonna have to pay a price”. Jesus, really do I always have to pay the fucking price? Must I go back with my tail wedged between my legs, head down in shame and deal with the punishment of leaving yoga? For who walks AWAY from a positive state of health? 

I know I never made the choice to walk away from my health, it just kinda happened for I was so distracted with this being who I love and worry about more than anything or anyone in life ( see problem #1, I know hindsight ). When a good chunk of time had passed and I could see the light of my practice becoming dim to my sight, I felt it was a sacrafice that I had to make (WRONG…20/20). It also showed that I was not as far ahead in my emotional growthas I had thought, for if I had being than I most likely could have kept up both, carrying for myself and child….simultaneously. I also probably wouldn’t have being so distraught and full of fear after he left.

I’ve had some positive thoughts and revelations about where to go next, knowning that I can find a much better state of mind and body to live in. My relationship with my former ex, a.k.a depression, sits not too far away smiling, enticing me to come and hang out, which I must admit I have done from time to time in the last while, but for now I share a rude gesture and perform an-about-face, looking towards the future, no longer in the past.

Namaste

 

Plan A…Retreat For Two <3 March 29, 2013

Filed under: Health Hopes,Nutrition — Working From Bed Productions @ 9:53 pm
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organic

Part One

Before leaving for our stay up north, I wrote about my quest for healthy living, as it pertains to food. Prior to our departure I carefully planned what my daughter and I would be eating for 16 days. Come to think of it “planned” maybe too strong of a word, it was more like “strongly thought about”. 

While entering the store I felt initially anxious; “How do I do this? I have no idea what kind of cookware etc. is up there?” I quickly stopped, found a corner, squatted down and made note of the ‘absolutes’, beginning with my bodium and coffee grinder ( I will be working for 16 days in a row….till 2am~my current schedule, up at 6am, bed at 10pm…) I began with the equipment and then ‘filled in the blanks’ with food; juicer, blender to start. Despite the super sized square footage of the store, I have over the last few months orientated myself to the small area where the ‘good stuff’ is located, a.k.a  the organic isles. The beauty of this is that I no longer have to go up and down aisles, one by one, sucking up the time I’d rather spend doing….just about anything else. I wouldn’t mind shopping, if I could do so while in a lovely open aired market. For now I hit the two isles mentioned, then meander thru the veggie and fruit section.

The thing about switching over to organics is that price does play a part, as does convenience, though I do not want to ‘carry over’ my old lame habits, like only going to the big superstores purely for convenience.  My ultimate shopping goal is to create a food buying club with family and friends, which is currently in its infancy stage, and purchase primarily seasonal, local food. As it stands I am purchasing grass-fed organic meat and poultry from local farmers thru a website called  Harvest Moon.

The shopping went well. I figured, ‘keep it easy and basic’ as I had no clue at the time what kind of environment I would be entering. Not only am I trying to purchase ‘happy meat’, as we like to call it (  animals who have been raised and slaughtered, ethically ) I am also attempting to purchase foods that are good for those of us with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Lastly, I am somewhat ‘hijacking’ my daughter food-wise. I know there is a store where we are going, but I also know it is very expensive due to location, so I am hoping that by ‘immersing’ ourselves in what I’ve bought, we will continue onwards with our move into healthier, purer eating.  What we have is what we have…period.

“It’s like going to a foreign country, I explained to my daughter, unable to speak the language, and in the end your fluent! So, this means I can eat both the old food I used to and the new organic stuff? ….Umm, no”.

Keeping with the simplistic theme, I created a daily menu, here’s an example:

Breakfast: Smoothie~frozen fruit, organic yogurt, org. coconut oil, org. flax-seed oil.

Lunch: org.greens, avocado, chicken, balsamic vinegar/olive oil.

Snack: fruit, granola

Dinner: egg pasta, veggies, org. ground beef, salad w/org.apples  

&

Lots of water

~ Daily Yoga & Meditation

In spite of our pending location, my goal was to create for my daughter and I our VERY own retreat

….this was the plan

Namaste

 

Where ‘Its’ At November 4, 2012

Filed under: Health Hopes,Nutrition,Parenting — Working From Bed Productions @ 12:25 am
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This day began in a magical way, not shocking that my Yoga practice this early morn was the culprit. Quite aways back,  I was experimenting with a variety of classes at Yoga Public, where I do my daily practice. TRX is not Yoga, but a type of workout done by doing exercises using one’s own body weight.  By holding onto ‘handles’ attached to straps, which continue upwards to the ceiling, where they are…attached, provides a major cardio workout.  I had pretty much a horrid experience doing this, in part at the time because unlike the other studios, this one has mirrors…..and a countdown clock, both of which provide, in my opinion much distraction. The level of strength and stamina involved in actually ‘enjoying’ this class was something I fully had no business in thinking I had, at least this particular kind of strength and stamina ( yup there’d be a difference).  

Whenever it comes up these days I promote Yoga. No, I’m not that obnoxious person that goes on and on, shoving’ it down people’s throats….unless they ask. So my good friend’s 13 yr. old daughter, who plays hockey, asked if I could take her to some Yoga classes, “Ah Yaa….., of course!” We went to Hot Yin last Sunday which she enjoyed, as did I in spite of the class being packed, and my long limbs actually bonking someone on the chin! Yes, this actually happened, thankfully Yoga people are the forgiving types:) This past week my teen friend texted to say she had one evening off and if we could go to a class.  Well guess which was the only one available? Yup, TRX.

O.k, alright I thought, I can do this, no problemo. It’s been months since my ‘last dance’ with TRX, Lord knows I’m stronger, wiser, heck I think I could even lead the damn class! No, not really, but you see where I was going here. I felt enthused, ready to see ‘how far I’ve come’.  Having already done my practice this morning, plus cleaning  a client’s house  ( for child’s private school $) and then a school ( more private school $), off I went with my daughter and teen friend in tow to TRX. In order to get to class on time, I needed to speed clean the school, which ended with  me in a full-out sweat, plus making the quickest pasta dinner in history, all the while eating it in the car ( done 1.25 hrs. prior to our workout:)  Do as I say not as I do, I instructed the young lassies in the back seat.   We were a tad late,  so when we walked into the studio everyone looked at us like they’d be waiting, oops~sorry.  Arlen our instructor who’s beyond lovely btw, pointed me towards ‘my spot’….AT THE VERY FRONT…WHERE THE MIRRORS AND COUNTDOWN CLOCK ARE!  I took one quick look at him, then myself in the mirror and thought…”oh shit”. Right then, right there,  I sensed TRX was a bad idea; too late, the music started and the class began. 

I’ll save you the full version and skip to the highlights, bullet style.

  • 5 minutes in, I looked at my teen friend telling her THIS here, what I’m doing  beside you, ya this should be noted as an act of genuine love, for I would do this for very few! 
  • 15 minutes in,  we are instructed to lower down to the ground on one foot then  pull ourselves up and hop upright as high as possible 10x……I throw Arlen a are you fucking crazy look? He laughs!
  • 25 minutes in, first break. I ‘walk’ to my water bottle while catching my daughter’s encouraging smile ( while she watched from the smart side of the sliding glass door ) I mouthed an obscenity, similar to “Holy Cow”. 
  • 36 minutes in, hands throbbing ( did I mention I also have severe eczema on my hands at times? this day, was one of those times). I literally saw the cracks starting to bleed and showed them to Arlen. I excused myself and went to the bathroom. I stared at my beyond red face and instructed myself, ‘Rocky style’, to “get back out there”.
  • 45 minutes….done and done…OMG!

I knew at probably the ten minute mark that this was not a good idea, but honestly not for the reasons I thought at the time. When I had left the TRX studio, I did feel a sense of failure and questioned, “Wow, have I actually been fooling myself into thinking I was in better shape?” I’ve since learned the phrase ‘in shape’ means different things to different people. Off I went, back home and not long after straight into bed.  My teen friend LOVED it btw and now wants to bring her entire hockey team for their ‘dry land workout’. “Bless you my child, go for it!”. TRX is a really good workout for certain people for sure, I just now know, some 26 hours later,  it’s OFFICIALLY not for me.

Today I awoke in some kind of pain, good God. Most know the pain in which I speak of, the kind where it hurts to walk up, down, side-ways any which way on stairs; heck even pressing down on the gas pedal hurt. Regardless, off we went at 7am, my daughter and I to do our practice. Walking into the building we were greeted by two of our Yoga teachers. “I made a bad decision last night”, I stated and went on to describe what I did and how I was  hurting something fierce. My Ashtanga teacher, shook his head and stated firmly how this was NOT good, for my body and for what I am trying to accomplish,  eg. healing myself from R. A etc…I acknowledged and dutifully carried on to the change room, knowing I was shortly about to pay the price, another one anyways, for my ‘mis-step’ the night earlier…..or so I thought.  It was ridiculous, it really was as I began.  I kept getting flashes of the Tin Man after having just been ‘oiled up’, though the main difference here….he felt mobile after a bit, I on the other hand  seriously questioned, for real, if I could actually stand upright for very long.  To sweeten the pot, the day earlier I was given new poses, now bringing more time and intensity ( lovely intensity I might add ) to my practice. Just to give you a good visual example here, I am to stand on one leg,  while the other one is up and parallel to the floor, all the while holding on to my big toe (  the parallel leg) and breathing for 5 Yoga breaths, which for those who don’t know the difference, is pretty much 2 seconds longer to the average 1. This among others, left me very unfocused. Unfocused=bad practice. I walked out to blow my nose and spoke to the teacher’s assistant Lori, who is a great. She said, “you know what, don’t worry just breathe and do your best, if you need to leave that’s o.k. Also, don’t go fully into the poses, just ease in”. 

Back I went and literally within a few moments ‘found’ my legs,  ceasing any pain or discomfort from my thoughts. I went through the practice, finished and while laying down to take my shivasana, I thought, “holy shit I actually just ‘surpassed’ this very uncomfortable pain purely by focusing elsewhere”. What I honestly find mind-blowing is the subtly of these ‘shifts’ when they occur. I am, if anyone who reads this blog doesn’t already know,  not exactly a chilled out, zen kind-of-gal. Actually I think that if all the single parenting, sickness and money problems were taken away, I’d probably be a pretty chilled out cat…

Clarity came to me after my practice concerning where I really am, in reference to my present physical state. I feel it actually was good to have done TRX, because it helped me realize that I don’t need to prove anything to anyone at any point, especially to myself about where I’m at; I needn’t be more than what I currently am, period. Again, right here, right now, THIS is all that matters.  Removing this pressure, much of which stems from a long history of trying to please and step up to parental expectations, created much-needed space in the place where current daily ‘housekeeping’ occurs.  Why would I go and do, in this case a physical act, that caused me such uncomfortableness? My Ashtanga practice has given me so much, never leaving me with anything but positivity and new lessons learned. I’ve taken this and applied it to my logical side. I’ve also thought about the other choices I have made in my life, that have provided me only with pain or sadness. Why, do we choose to enter into anything that may not be good for us? Many a time we know better, yet go ahead to show ourselves or someone else what we’re made of; in these cases, I’ll speak for myself here, it shows only a lack of remembering who I actually am.  Sometimes we need a reminder; this experience was just that for me, which I am thankful for.

When I finished this ‘magical’ practice, I gave deep kudos to this remarkable body of mine. Considering what it has endured and continues to endure with this disease, only to come through when I need it to, reminds me it is so much more important to know what it is I can do, versus what I cannot.

THIS is where it’s at.

Namaste 

 

Post Cleanse Day 11 :) April 7, 2012

Filed under: Nutrition — Working From Bed Productions @ 3:19 am

Freedom?

So the big question recently from many was, “So what’s the first thing your going to eat when your off the cleanse?” The funny thing is, other than enjoying a nice glass of red wine, there really isn’t anything that I have craved or REALLY wanted, whether it was during the cleanse, or now one day later. Not so long ago, logic piped up and stated the obvious; Why would you go back and eat the way you used to, when you feel so much better and energetic now? Can’t really argue this point? Last night I went out for dinner with my daughter. I didn’t go crazy but did have a rather large glass of red wine, baja fish taco’s and a cappuccino. When I returned home, I felt super bloated. Understandable, considering I have been living on fruit, juicing/eating veggies and rice for 10 days. Awhile later I started feeling grumpy and initially couldn’t figure out why. In time I realized that the bloated feeling reminded me of how I normally I would feel after I ate. Prior to this ‘revitalization period’, I was quite unhappy. I didn’t realize how much until I began to feel less pain and more peace. The goal now is to create a plan which is in balance with my doshas, which btw is Pitta-Vata.

I awoke this morning juiced and made my way to Yoga. Feeling better. I’ve learned thus far that I have always had the freedom to create the type of diet which is best suited for me. I no longer feel imprisoned by food and for this I will be forever grateful.