supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Lucia yoga today was surprisingly good. We started out standing, which Lucia never does, and we did a whole slew of sun salutations. Really got things warmed up. I did a good headstand, too. My big breakthrough was cobbler pose, though--I touched my forehead to my big toe! I don't think I've ever ever done that before. My hips are doing so awesomely lately.

I had a good practice on Tuesday evening, too, a good 50 minutes or so (music: Anoushka Shankar, which was inoffensive but for the most part not fast enough). Also did a headstand. I'm getting better and better at it.

To practice more at home: dolphin, kneeling half moon. I also need to do more sun salutation repetitions, and need to hold poses longer to build stamina. I'm getting pretty strong now--a year ago I could never have hovered in low plank--but I don't really have much stamina, and when I'm in class (ie, not running my own practice) I get wobbly pretty quickly and can't hold poses for long enough.
supercheesegirl: (star trek - sulu huzzah)
Here's my new fit thing. I'm definitely gaining weight right now, because I don't have a gym and it's winter so I don't go outside. So I've decided that whenever I can, I will get off the train two stops early and walk home from St. Martins station. That gives me about a 20 minute walk, and gets me home only around 10 minutes later than usual. If I take the train straight home, it's only a quick walk into my apartment, and then I don't want to go out in the cold again, but if I get off the train early, then I must walk outdoors even if it's cold out. I think this is a pretty brilliant idea, and I plan to implement it whenever it's not actively snowing/raining and whenever I'm not wearing inappropriate clothes/shoes. I did it Monday and Tuesday and it was very nice.

I did yoga when I got home Monday night. It was a nice practice. Listened to Lotus, which is still my perfect yoga album. I also just did around 45 minutes of yoga today, and it was also lovely. I can feel my arms getting stronger. More frequent practice really makes a difference! But I don't think Secret Chiefs 3 is a good band for yoga. A little too loud and chaotic.

I went to NYC this weekend. I saw Equus on Broadway, starring Daniel Radcliffe and Kate Mulgrew. It was excellent! I was so involved in the story and the acting that at no time did I think, "LookitsHarryPotterspenis!" In fact Daniel Radcliffe was not like Harry Potter at all. I feel proud of him! Go Daniel Radcliffe, establishing yourself as an actual real actor!

F booked his flights to come to PA for Christmas, and he helped me book flights to go out to California for New Years. The holidays are going to be awesome this year. I was even able to order a poinsettia from my church at the last minute! (They sell poinsettias to decorate the church, and then you can pick them up after the Christmas Eve service and take them home. Mine last year lasted for a month and was huge and beautiful!) My parents are awesome, F is awesome, and things in general are pretty awesome.

Except for Heroes, that is. Read more... )
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
I did half an hour of half-assed reluctant yoga last Wednesday (but still got some good work in despite myself), a full hour of awesome yoga on Saturday morning, and 40 minutes of decent practice last night. I'm probably not going to get much good yoga in this weekend, because I'm visiting Missi in NYC, but hopefully Sunday when I get back I can do something.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Look ye upon THE COOLEST YOGA BAG I HAVE EVER SEEN.

There are dozens of different fabrics to choose from, and she'll customize it with hidden pockets and adjustable straps, and she obviously includes PURE AWESOME somewhere in the bag's make-up. My mom sent me this link. She's thinking of getting one of the purses for herself for Christmas, and might think about getting me one too. Eeeee.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
I had a really fun yoga practice in Lucia's class Thursday after work. I did my headstand and almost kicked a hole in the wall. Lucia was surprised and proud of me but asked me not to, uh, kick a hole in the wall.

Today I did yoga for about an hour. I'm so surprised by how much stronger I feel already. I have done yoga four times this week, and I'm not tired or hurting at all--just stretchy and glowy, and strong. I did all my strength building stuff, and was able to do more reps of it. I also did my headstand again and was shocked at how easy it is now. I don't have to use that much force (ie, hole-in-wall kicking force) to get my legs up. I just have to use my core muscles and the legs just kind of drift up. It's lovely. A really good practice. I need to try to keep up with yoga 3-4 times a week, because it really does make a difference!

Earlier this week I surfed amazon's lists to find some good yoga music. I downloaded a bunch of things on SoulSeek, and today I fixed the file names and tags and put them into iTunes and onto my iPod. I also made handy yoga playlists out of the different albums, and some other albums that feel yogic (like Enigma, and Secret Chiefs 3). So now I can get to the yoga music quickly and easily through the playlists, instead of trying to remember some obscure hindi-inspired band name and having to scroll through my very long list to find it. Also I put the playlist time length in the name, so I can choose a playlist based on how long of a practice I want. Pretty awesome, no? I should be set on yoga music for a good month or so, I bet.

I also took a good long walk last night. I went to take out the trash around 10:30 and it just felt so nice outside that I decided to take a walk. I left around 11:00, dropped off some library books, and took a long walk around the neighborhood, got home around midnight. My pinkie toe hurts now, but it was a good walk.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Excellent yoga practice tonight! About 50 minutes. Felt very strong and centered, didn't wobble much at all in my balance work. My body was so happy to be doing yoga! Did all the strength exercises, and although I didn't attempt another headstand, I did do my best and easiest tripod yet.

Tonight's yoga music: Enigma. I still have to go through the stuff I downloaded on Sunday and see if it's any good.

After yoga, I watched the movie Little Children. I wanted to see it because, Kate Winslet, but holy crap it was good. The ending left me gasping and amazed. Also, Kate Winslet. At a few points in the movie, Kate Winslet's character is compared in a negative light to Jennifer Connolly's character. That just doesn't make sense to me--Jennifer's attractive, sure, but Kate! Dear God is that woman beautiful.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
I just had a really terrific yoga practice. I felt so strong and centered--my body really wanted to be doing yoga. I did my strength-training circuit, AND I did my first-ever all-by-myself headstand. I did one a few weeks ago in Lucia's class, but that was with Lucia standing there to catch me if I fell on my head. Today it was just me, leaning against my front door. It really is all abs. I mean, I knew that, but experiencing it is different. I'm hoping if I work on headstand some more I might be able to work up to handstand in a few months. Whee. Probably a 50-55 minute practice altogether.

AND I finished the first draft of a really difficult essay this morning. And read some poetry. Now I'm going to work on sending out submissions and maybe downloading new yoga music. (I also watched two hours of HGTV today and ate several pieces of greasy restaurant cornbread, but small steps, right, and I clipped the coupons and did dishes at the commercials.) Yesterday I put away all the Halloween decorations and cleaned the apartment (including sweeping the dreaded floors). Overall I feel like I'm in a genuinely healthy place, location and body and mind, for the first time in weeks.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Oh man. I barely did any yoga at all during the entire month of October, and I'm really feeling it. I did about a 45 minute practice tonight, and discovered that I have no arm muscles, no thighs, and no balance. I'm also a little concerned about my wrists and hands--I've been feeling some tightness there for a while, and it's definitely increased since I haven't been practicing my yoga. Must stave off the carpal tunnel! Back to the mat!

I did all the basic standing poses, and my strength building exercises, and some seated stuff. Pidgeon felt so good I just wanted to hang out there all day. My hips are surprisingly okay--I would've thought I'd be all tight, but that area actually wasn't too bad. The thighs, though. Gad.

I'm going to practice at home again Wednesday, and then at least once over the weekend. Next week I'll go back to Lucia's yoga class, and maybe also be daring enough to try a studio. Or maybe I'll give myself another week to get back in shape. I don't want to push too hard. I can already tell I'm going to be a sore kitten tomorrow.
supercheesegirl: (conan the barbarian)
I seem to have forgotten to post that I went to the gym on Monday. Well, I did. I did 3 miles on the elliptical in just under 32 minutes. I also did all the weight machines, and pushed a little extra since it was my last visit. I did some minor stretching, and then headed out to get home in time to watch Chuck.

It was my last visit to this gym. I like the gym a lot, but my membership expired on October 1, and the only affordable membership they have involves a yearly commitment, which I can't make right now--I don't know where F and I will be moving to once he gets a job in Philly, so I can't make another year's commitment at this gym. If it turns out that we stay in Chestnut Hill, I will happily go back there and take F with me, because it's an awfully nice place.

I am considering getting some yoga class cards at area studios instead, to supplement my fitness. I think I posted before that getting 7-class cards at two local studios would cost about as much as three months at my gym and would last me as long. I am currently considering Wake Up Yoga down in the art museum district, Yoga on Main in Manayunk, and Yoga on the Ridge in Roxborough (they have a sale on right now if I get there before the end of the month).

I will probably not follow through on the yoga plan in October, though. October is really crazy for me. I am going to try to do yoga at home when I have time. I'm also going to try to get outdoors for long walks to enjoy the nice autumn weather while we've got it.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Went to Ann's yoga class at my gym last night. It pretty much kicked my ass. I'm getting soft, just going to Lucia's classes. We did a lot of standing work last night, and I just couldn't hold the poses for as long as I wanted to. I need to increase my personal at-home practice, and also follow up on classes at studios in the area. I also need to call the gym and make sure that my yearly membership ends at the end of this month and that they're not going to automatically renew it or anything.

RE: Heroes: WTF??? Discuss.
supercheesegirl: (conan the barbarian)
I was really depressed at work today. Really, really. But luckily when I got home I did not post on LJ but instead went directly to the gym! I got there by like 6:45, which is really good for me. Did 34 minutes on the elliptical--3 miles in 30:30, then cooled down for another 1/4 mile. I really needed to run, it felt good. I was watching The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen on TNT--I know it's a horrible movie, but goddamn is Stuart Townsend hot in it. Mmm, mmm, bitch. I also hadn't realized that Naseeruddin Shah, who played the father in Monsoon Wedding, was Captain Nemo. He is hella awesome.

Did all the weight machines, then took my mat back to the classroom, which is always empty after 7 on Friday nights, and fooled around with some yoga stuff. Handstands are really hard--I cannot kick up without momentum. I don't know if I could kick up with momentum, but I think I'll have a better chance. Although kicking up into a handstand seems suspiciously similar to doing a cartwheel, which god knows I couldn't do if my life depended on it. Obviously I still have to work on handstand. I'm really looking forward to the magical yoga moment when handstand clicks into place for me. I didn't try headstand again, because it tends to bother my neck and I don't want to do it when I'm by myself. I did do tripod briefly, and some of my other favorite yoga stuff. Didn't do squats, because my thighs are still unhappy from last Sunday. Overall, a really good gym night. I will be sad when my membership expires in 11 days.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Went to Lucia's yoga class on Thursday. Realized I hadn't done any yoga really in a good two weeks. I had a rough time in Hero pose in particular--it's one of my favorites, and usually I can get in it and lay back on the ground and hang out there all relaxed, but on Thursday I had to prop up on my elbows. Not good. I spent most of Friday and Saturday feeling sore in unusual ways, which tells me I'm getting out of practice.

Today I was planning to go to the gym and do some yoga there, but I overslept and time got away from me, and I realized that I don't actually need to go to the gym in order to do yoga. I put on my Lotus cd and did yoga right here at home, which I hadn't done in a while. Did probably a 45-50 minute practice (longer than the cd ran), which I was pretty happy with. It was nice to do some vinyasa flow work on my own, since most of what I've been doing lately is hatha style with Lucia. I think I will definitely want to teach vinyasa rather than hatha; it just makes more sense to me. I did my usual strength-building poses, and also did my bethak squats and dand pushups, which I had not done in a long time. Tree pose (see icon) was particularly fulfilling for me today. I just hung out on my right leg for a long time. My branches blew in the wind.
supercheesegirl: (conan the barbarian)
Made it to the gym later than I'd wanted, but got in 20 minutes on the elliptical and did all my weight machines. Better than nothing!

My yearly membership at my gym is up next month, and I need to decide what to do. I like my gym, but I don't know if I can renew for another full year because I don't know where F and I will be living. It's a lot more expensive to get a membership for just a few months, though. I'm considering canceling the gym membership and putting the money towards taking yoga classes at different studios in the area, with an eye to investigating which places I like and which teach the kind of yoga I myself would want to teach. Then I'll have a better idea where I want to go for my teacher training.

The best options for studios based on my extremely preliminary research are Wake Up Yoga in the Fairmount neighborhood and Yoga on Main in Manayunk. According to the websites, a 7-class card at Yoga on Main is $84, and a 10-class card at Wake Up Yoga is $120. That's $204 total, and would last me up to four months (three months at Yoga on Main, four at Wake Up). I could take at least one class per week, sometimes two, for just $12 per class, which is fair. Three months of membership at my current gym at my current rate would be $201, so it's a comparable price--I can take unlimited yoga classes at my current gym, but I don't, I'm actually lucky if I make one per week. If I did the multiple yoga studio plan, I'd just have to supplement the yoga with long walks on the weekends, to make up for not having access to an elliptical anymore.

I still have to do some more research--those are just two of the local studios that offer teacher trainings, there might be others that would be a good fit for me that I should try out. But I'm thinking about it.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Made it to yoga last night. Unfortunately, the usual Monday night instructor who I love is on vacation, and we got the Thursday night instructor as a sub. I don't love her Thursday night "stress relief yoga" class (which is good because I usually have class with Lucia on Thursdays instead), and I really really didn't love her last night. I didn't like the way she structured the sun salutations, or the way she described poses. In particular, the way she had us come up out of forward folds made me dizzy--I've been practicing long enough to do it properly, but newer people might not have known how to do it differently so they wouldn't get dizzy. Dizzy yoga students is a bad thing. There were good aspects of the class: I liked how she warmed up every area of the body, and how she focused on letting go of all the stress we carry. There are things I'd steal from her, but overall, didn't love the class, didn't love her style, and spent a good chunk of the class being annoyed. It's getting to be time for me to have the credentials to back myself up. I need to start researching yoga teacher training, for real. I'm thinking next spring. (I got enough shit going on this fall.)

Have you seen the Bing Bong Brothers video? (Not safe for work unless you've got headphones.) I've had that song stuck in my head ALL MORNING.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Dragged my sorry self to the gym last night. When I get home on Monday nights, I am just trashed out tired and sick of everything. Dragging is necessary to get my ass to the gym. But I made it, and got a parking spot, and all was well.

Did ten minutes on the elliptical, because that was all I had time for before class. I am experimenting with different speeds on the elliptical--the sign on the machine says that slower is the "fat burning zone" and faster is the "cardio training zone". I would think that cardio training would also result in fat burning, no? But last night I went slower, for fat burning, because usually I just go fast. (Or, as fast as I can personally manage to go, which isn't all that fast but which is improving.)

Yoga class was good. I like the Monday night class a lot. This makes three Mondays in a row now that I've made it. Yay.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
I never posted about my yoga class Thursday night. It was good, but a little scattered--one girl came a bit late, then we ran a little over time and I had to leave before the end of the meditation so I could catch my train. Best thing, though, was learning tripod pose. I can has headstand! Or close enough. I'm totally working it. And I showed Lucia my new and improved handstand prep and she said I'm totally strong enough to do a real one. I said I wasn't ready yet, and she said, that's fine but really you are. So that was cool.

Awesome gym workout today. I did 45 minutes on the elliptical! Warmed up for the first 1.5 minutes, then really pushed myself so that I made 3 miles in 30 minutes. Then I cooled down for the last fifteen minutes of the workout. About 4 miles total. It said I burned over 500 calories, but who knows. Did all the weights, then did about 35 minutes of yoga. Practiced my handstand prep and my tripod, and did my other usual things like tabletop and pigeon. It was nice.

My weight at the gym today was 161.75. I took my shoes off for that. It's the highest my weight has ever been. I can now officially say that I'd like to lose ten pounds. Whee. I've been building a lot of muscle lately, so that might have an effect on my weight, I guess. Overall, I feel really good, and I know my body is in better shape than it's been in for a long time, and looks better too, so I don't want to worry about it, but the actual number in pounds is a little disconcerting.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Got to the gym around 6:40 and found a parking spot! Did 8 minutes on the non-moving-arms elliptical, then moved to a moving-arms one when one became available. I did 10 minutes and, since I was already warmed up, easily did a 10-minute mile.

I was in time for the Monday night yoga class, but it got canceled. I was already off the elliptical and ready to go, so I just did some yoga anyway. I had an awesome yoga practice--it was one of those days when I felt completely made of muscle. It was really nice. I did crunches and everything. A full hour's yoga practice!

I am concerned lately about my belly. Usually, when I get on a good gym streak, the belly fat melts away, but this has not been happening. In fact the belly seems firmly established lately and officially sticks out farther than my tits (at least, when they're confined to a sports bra). This is a problem. Perhaps I should stop eating raw cookie dough as a snack. You think?

::edit:: I just remembered, I'm due for my period this week!! That means we can attribute the belly fat to bloating!!
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
Tonight I managed 14 minutes on the elliptical before the 7 PM yoga class. Thursday nights is "stress relief yoga", which is really really really gentle. There were lots of older people in the class. It was nice, and I feel more relaxed, but this isn't my favorite yoga class. I only went tonight because Lucia's on a business trip in San Francisco (San Francisco! Why can't I get a business trip to San Francisco? I ask you!) and so we didn't have Lucia yoga tonight. Definitely glad and proud that I went, though.
supercheesegirl: (yoga)
1.) I need to attend yoga class on Monday nights more often. If the computer isn't on when I get home, it's much easier to get out the door on time--tonight I was out by 6:20 and had no problem finding a parking spot at 6:30 at the gym. If I want to be serious about yoga, I need to do this. Lucia's yoga class is easy and relaxed and fun, but not enough to be the only yoga class I take. Similarly, even if I were to do a full hour of yoga on my own, I'd still be doing only the poses I felt like doing. It's important to do all the darn poses. Monday nights = yoga nights, as much as possible.

2.) NOTE TO SELF: THERE IS NO NEED TO LIFT WEIGHTS BEFORE MONDAY NIGHT YOGA CLASS.

3.) Also did 20:45 minutes on the treadmill, for 2 miles. Probably my best yet. I think this is very good for my endurance, which was pretty much nonexistent.

4.) Need to practice tree pose while standing on right leg. On left leg, it's easy. On right leg, not so much.
supercheesegirl: (conan the barbarian)
I rocked at the gym tonight. 30 minutes on the moving-arms elliptical, for 2.8 miles. I think an eventual goal would be to do a 10-minute mile without breaking myself. I'm getting close.

I think I am possibly weird: I was running (or at least what qualifies as running for me) while listening to VNV Nation and watching house porn on HGTV. (House #2 was so beautiful! I think I may have made little oohing noises, but I had the music turned up too loud to hear myself. Why don't I have $1,300,000 for a pretty house??) I occasionally watched a little of Alton Brown making puff pastry porn on the food network, but overall, the house porn was much more exciting. Also, I can watch house porn without the damn close captioning (unlike Jeopardy, for which close captioning is really necessary if you want to know what the answer actually was--I haven't been able to watch Jeopardy at the gym since they got the new TVs that don't have close captioning). I will have to request a channel change to HGTV when I work out from now on.

Also did all the arm weights. I'm still doing the lowest possible weight and just increasing the number of reps. I had to go to 20 reps on the one arm machine tonight to feel anything--I may have to up the weight on that one soon. I can definitely, definitely tell the difference the weights are making in terms of strength. I'm still not seeing a difference in terms of tone, which is frustrating. I want skinny arms again. Did the one thigh machine too, which I think is doing good things for me. I need strong thighs for yoga. Did my basic stretches--not a full yoga routine, but I did all my arm strength yoga moves.

Now that my arms are getting all strong, I'm going to start using my Conan icon for gym posts. It's not like I'm pushing the wheel of pain or anything, but still.

Weight after workout, including sneakers: 160. Which is about what my weight is these days.

I went to the gym on Friday 5/21 also, and did 30+ minutes on the elliptical and an hour of yoga, but the next morning I went to NYC and forgot to post about it. So that was the last time I was at the gym. I don't feel too bad about missing all this past week, because I had a wart treatment done by my podiatrist a week ago (last Tuesday) and it was really painful. Today was really the first plausible day for me to get back to the gym. I went to yoga class last Thursday and even that was really tough--had to do all my downward dogs on one foot. Which I don't mind when I'm able to switch the foot periodically, but with one gimp foot, that meant my left leg had to do all the work and I couldn't feel balanced. Meh. Better now, though. And the warts look like this time they might actually turn black and fall off. Fingers crossed.

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