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This weekend was a forced break, for both my husband and myself. We played and talked. We visited the town where we were married, (Fernandina Beach,) and kicked it off with a great workshop from Alyson Foracre and Lululemon. Yoga for Runners Saturday at Lulu in St. John’s Town Center. We started with some breathing and side stretching, then a quick 1 mile run followed by about an hour and a half of postures and flow. We both learned a great deal!

Sunday, our long run, and then stretching using some of the techniques we learned from Alyson! And then, an idea was born. Why not host a daily run/yoga hour from 6:15-7:15? Perhaps this becomes part of Anjali Yoga’s offerings? Definitely worth exploring.

Great weekend, awesome yoga. Giving thanks to the universe for this blessing.


Brief and deep: Sun Salutations after my long run. Warrior One opening the hips.

The whirlwind began. Cleaning, cooking, cooking and cooking. Superbowl Sunday! Chili, cornbread, guacamole. Yum! Friends over. So much fun!

Then, tonight. Time to slow down. Six deep Dirgha breaths. Clearing the mind, hand on stomach. Belly, center, chest, hold. Chest, center, belly, hold. Finding that space between exhale and inhale. Staying there. Enjoying the quiet. A great day.

This would have normally been a day I skip yoga. Too much going on. My professional obligations, personal commitments and poor time management combine to make Friday a challenging day to practice.

But, 28 practices in 28 days… It is on my mind a lot. I believe in this concept and am dedicated to this effort. I only had a few moments to practice, (lesson learned, get up earlier.) Centering, Cat Cow, 2 Sun Salutations, Child’s Pose, Intense Western Stretch, Navasana, Half Shoulder stand and Shavasana. Ahhhhhh.

Second lesson learned today: Even if you only have a few minutes, yoga can alter your mindset and better your day.

 I really like creating a flow that targets what  my mindbody brings to the mat. For example, this morning my husband and I went  for a run (Gate River Run training week 8  Four miles in the cold darkness , talking about hopes and dreams and loving it! We arrived home energized, inspired and ready for the day.

Mindful of my 28 in 28 commitment,  I began to prepare for practice. After 3 classes in 2 days, I  have typically taken a break from  asana on Wednesday. This morning felt different. I decided to match my energy level with a bit of asana focusing on hamstrings and hips after a cold run. Also, I knew I had to keep it short.  

After a moment of centering I warmed up with Child’s Pose, Cat Cow and some spinal rocking. I then entered into Tadasana. What a feeling of gratitude. My spirit thanking myself for this time? Acknowledgement of my commitment to this practice? Perhaps a brief glimpse of the connection to that divine we all seek. From there I practiced a few Sun Salutations, modifying a bit as I am still sore from yoga last night. I then  focused on hamstrings and hips with Down Dog and Pidgeon. Half shoulder stand and Happy Baby brought me to Shavasana.

Thus ends my physical practice of yoga on day three. But I also acknowledge that, just as the Apostle Paul suggests in the New Testament of the Bible that we pray without ceasing, yoga is a practice we take with us into our day, guiding interactions with others and helping temper our inner dialogue.

I showed up for our second teacher training weekend Saturday morning worried I would be late. Flying down 295 I kept checking the clock, “7:45,” ohhhhkay, “7:50,” gulp, then ” 7:55, oh but wait it’s 7 minutes fast which means I actually have 12, no 17 no, shoot, 12 that’s right 12 minutes. I’m good.”

I park, fly up the stairs and Alyson, zenned out behind the desk says “Oh Shae! You’re early! Are you going to do the power class too?” Ummm what? And that started the weekend. 90 minutes of intense power, that is a great class by the way, the 90 minute Sun Power on Saturday mornings. Those people like to sweat! Then a full Yogalates class with Wendy, who I secretly think with her amazing strength and stamina must be a super heroine of some kind. With her cape in the car for emergencies and her mat and Pilates ball she battles evil, weak abs and inflexibility all across Jacksonville. I stumbled out of class, soaking wet and kind of buzzed, and immediately changed clothes.

We did our circle and talked about the month, and it struck me how much people deal with on a day to day basis and why something like yoga is so important in life. In our society there is not room for mediation, quiet and self examination. We literally carve time from our busy day to make these things happen. For me, it has come in the form of waking up at 5:30 or 6 in the mornings on the weekdays for time to center. 

In our group we have had serious life changing events in the last 3 months, and these people are making time for yoga. And that is really the point of this post- making time. In my last post I made a commitment to increase my practice and work on diet in order to have a stronger practice. This post is about a commitment to carving the time out to meditate, study the history of this tradition, and build the karmic side of my yoga practice.

I loved practicing outside in the gentle rain, until my mat got too slippery. Moving into the patio, the cat became very interested in what I was doing, and during handstand Ginger, our greyhound, just stared. I am sure she was thinking something like, “Gosh, she’s all mixed up. I hope she doesn’t hurt herself.”

Also, it is time to sweep the patio. It took only one DirghaPersonal Practice Day 1 (2) breath to realize that!

Rewarding, yes. I will learn quite a bit by going through a flow unguided several times a week. I hope to be able to have enough discipline to do a few one hour sessions by myself. Today’s was a half hour. I will have to create a special place for it, however. Or just sweep the patio.

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