Friday, May 23, 2008

Yoga, Tai Chi, All Kicking My Ass

My good friend John finally got me going to the gym again. Actually its not a gym, it's more like a 5 star resort. It's truly amazing and our kids probably have as much fun as we do. Anyway, I usually do 40 minutes of cardio a day and then sit in the dry sauna for about 20 minutes and listen to guided meditation podcasts on my ipod. Ohh yeah, Joel has totally gone granola but when you listen to screaming kids fight and bicker all day long, the sound of ocean waves, sperm whales and birds chirping is a welcomed change!
So the cardio thing, well I don't like to run so I mostly set my treadmill for "fat burn" hold on to the sensors and let the machine raise and lower my fat ass according to my heart rate. I also do the bikes, rowing machine and elliptical while watching ESPN on the mega screen tvs. It's nice.

Last week John and I went to see Dr. Wayne Dyer lecture and found out that he used to run 8 miles every day for like 20 years. The many years of ground pounding had taken its toll on his knees and joints so he had to give it up. During this time he found Yoga and said "I get as much of a workout doing Yoga as I do running 8 miles a day." I found that very interesting and wondered if Dr. Dyer was full of crap.

On Tuesday I went to the club and took a "Fusions" class that mixes Tai Chi, Yoga and some
Zen stuff. I got my mat and hid in the back. There was one other dude in there, the rest were all skinny bitches. I think I weighed more than half the class combined. Our instructor was Abbey and
let me tell you, she is some kind of genius. As she walked us through some of the different "poses" she kept an eye on me and sent extra encouragement as I kept falling out of my "Downwards Facing Dog and Monkey to Chair poses." About 5 minutes into the class I start breaking out in this MASSIVE sweat. I thought I was standing in the shower! After 20 minutes I was soaked to my shorts and I hadn't stepped more than three feet away from my mat. By the end of the class it looked like I had been drug out of the pool for lifesaving CPR (I don't think any of the skinny bitches sweat at all). It was amazing and I decided that I needed more.

After the class I thanked Abbey profusely and told her I would be back for more. When I mentioned that I was sweating like a whore in church she laughed and then told me that Yoga is one of the best things you can do for weight loss because it burns fat like crazy. I liked that PLUS the fact she had this incredibly soothing voice that made me want to do anything she asked me. She encouraged me to take more classes and I agreed since this was much more fun than lifting weights with a bunch of fat heads.

I went to a Vinyasa Yoga class yesterday that was taught by this very handsome black guy John. He had the same soothing voice! For a moment I had wondered if I was turning gay because he sounded like Barry White and I found myself willing to do anything he asked just to keep him talking. I figured out later that he had to be soothing because he was laying the silent hurt on me "Now I want you to lay on your stomach and place ONE hand under your belly and lift your entire body off of the floor. This is called the oh-my-hell-this-is-kicking-my-ass pose. That's right...GOOOOD. Now just balance and breathe... YESSSS" Sweat is pouring down my face like a tsunami but I feel impressed to hold myself into this torture position just to keep John talking me through it all "Gooood, YESSSSS, WONDERFULL!" If John had been a jerk, I would have picked up my mat and walked my Yoga ass out the door to rejoin the fat heads.

So does it work? I have to tell you that I am impressed enough that I have signed up for all of the classes throughout the week. My body is pretty beat up today but I feel really really good for the first time in a long time. Maybe it's the Yoga, maybe it's the Tai Chi and the Sun Salutations. I think that has something to do with it, but for now I'll do whatever it takes to keep the soothing voices talking. Yes Abbey and John, I am GOOOD...WONDERFUL....INCREDIBLE...YESSSS!


Ali said...

I've always wanted to do yoga or pilates at the gym, but I'm always scared off by those "skinny bitches" that always seem to come out of the woodwork at the gym.

And I really REALLY commend you for not just doing it once, but signing up for it over and over again. I'm excited to see the new and improved lean machine Joel.

Lisa said...

You're my hero for taking the bull by the horns and doing it! I think I'm going to try it with you next week. Although something tells me that I just won't look as good doing it as all the skinny bitches. I must say it's worrying me a bit that you have a man crush on the Yoga instructor though. Hmmm

Abigail said...

You had me laughing really hard! Your so great, thanks for coming to my classes. I will see you next week....can't wait! The downward dog will get much better, I promise!

John said...

Taking yoga and calling guys handsome...

I think maybe we should start worrying about you, joel...

Just kidding! That's awesome. I've thought about trying yoga for a long time, but never taken the leap.. good for you.