I did something to my body yesterday in yoga class. Something, something.. no idea what exactly.

I have these days where I do a lot in a day. Many times I teach two classes, I will practice a yoga class, and even train once (or even twice) with my budo teacher. I consider it amazing that I am fit, well and capable enough to do that much. Some see it as crazy, insane, even nutty. You’ve done what today? For me, it just is the practice. The practice of teaching, the practice of practice, the practice of training. I differentiate between practice (yoga) and training (budo) simply for clarity’s sake. Ultimately, it is all practice. Practice practice practice.

I’m a firm believer in do. Do what you can do. What you cannot do, you strive for. But what happens when you cannot do because your body says no? The most obvious answer is that we stop, rest, recuperate and come back slowly.

I’m not good at resting. I’m not good at stopping. I’m not good at slowing down.

As I sit here typing, thinking of my day with no yoga, no budo, no exercise or practice other than putting away laundry and tidying up the house, I feel like I have not done today. I have not pushed myself. Or have I? Is the inability to do, and the requirement to not do, my practice? In theory this should also work in the reverse, right?

I’m trying to see it that way.

Having pain in my body, of any sort, is not overly alarming to me. I know the difference, quite well, between injurious (bad) pain and irritation and sensation from hard work. I know when my back aches whether it’s going to hurt for a day or two or a month. I’ve experience both ends.

I’m not afraid of whatever thing has happened in my body. I’m not really worried that I’ll be immobilized or in pain for an extended time. No, I’ll get a massage tomorrow, take a very gentle class, use the steam room, take hot baths, and continue on with my life.

The anxiety for me lies in the desire to keep pushing. I want to train hard, practice hard, and push forward. But I cannot do that. I have to back off. I have to exercise enough humility to know enough is enough. Maybe for a day, maybe for a week.

That’s my practice for now – to not do.

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Day 69: So close!!!

August 8, 2008

Every time I take a class, I check off a class on my challenge sheet. It’s still hanging on the board there with the others that have long been abandoned. Mine has now been turned over and a new list is running down the back of all my extra classes. I am SO close. 11 more classes to go. Tonight I am posing the challenge to myself to finish this in the next five days. Can Ren do 11 classes in five days?? If I double every day between now and Wednesday, including Advanced on Sunday I can. I’ve always wanted to finish this Challenge this way. Hard to believe it’s finally here. I can do it. I know it.

I had a great class with Nada this afternoon – her last at BYTW (for now). I am very very sad to see her go. I have learned a lot from her and she’s so encouraging. One day, I’ll go to Sonoma and teach for her. This is the great circle of life. After class I went to Lululemon for a fun event. I got to hang out with my yoga friends and we were all dry and dressed in street clothes!! Miracle!!!

Anyway, tomorrow starts my Double Marathon. If you are so inclined, say a little prayer for my spine. I’ve never done more than three days of consecutive double classes. This will be a first for me. Good preparation for Training, though.

‘Nite