“Presenting your Presence into the Present space”

That is just one of the many odd phrases I heard tonight at the most yoga-y yoga class I’ve ever taken.

Let me explain.

Heather has gone back to Northern Ireland for summer holidays, meaning I have all of my evenings without my built-company. (She is my housemate, and my friend, and I am already missing watching Homeland with her on Netflix, she’s only been gone 2 days)

Since there are a lot of evenings to fill (actually, 10) until I fly fly fly away to my friends in the States, I decided to make the most of my gym membership. I try and swim at least twice per week and then fit in one extra thing, either another swim or a class, but as I have more free evenings I figured why not use what I’m already paying for! I like to try different classes, but I rarely do the same one two weeks running.

Tonight I did a double whammy – a very intense Step class in which I sweated more than I have ever sweated in my life, but did NOT pass out (always a bonus) and followed it up with the aforementioned most yoga-y of yoga classes, in which we mostly laid on the floor and focused on sending out love and kindness and compassion and breathing in a very non-natural rhythym.

It started off with facing the back of the room, instead of the front, which threw me completely since I am a hide at the back type person, and suddenly I was completely exposed at the front (complete with sweaty workout top, hair pinned back in a highly glamorous fashion, and a purple face) Then, I had some incredibly judgy thoughts about the super-toned, perky, athletic person setting up her own pink yoga mat and (very Zen) little lamp.

Turns out she was the teacher. [And she was actually quite good, so it was naughty of me to be judgy]

She invited us to “begin the practise” by lying on our backs. There followed the most relaxing but giggle-worthy yoga “practise” I have ever done. Lots of talk of “floating our arms” to the ceiling, doing something called “releasing prana” which I definitely heard as “releasing piranha” and almost had the giggles (turns out ‘prana’ is energy – who knew), and all kinds of other fun and weird stuff….

But for all that it was weird, now I feel super chilled, and I think I may actually go back to this class ūüôā


Fit Brain vs Lazy Brain

This morning when I was getting ready for work, I packed my gym back and chucked it in the car – because my Fit Brain said that I spend ¬£30/month on membership and haven’t been in the past¬†3 weeks because of my holiday. Whilst doing this I ignored Lazy Brain who said “You’re jetlagged! Come straight home after work and slob about”

Throughout the day, Fit Brain and Lazy Brain had a somewhat interesting debate about my evening plans. It went something like this:

FB – you need to work out…it’s been almost 3 weeks!

LB – seriously, you don’t! Jammies and a movie, that’s what you need

FB – you want to work out

LB – you’re stupid

FB – I win!

LB – but…you left your work¬†phone at home and you’re on call tonight

FB – you can go and get it on the way home

LB – it’s not on the way home…why not just go home and do the gym tomorrow?

FB – no, pick up the phone and go to the gym afterwards

LB – I’ll say it again, you’re jetlagged!

FB – but doing some exercise will be helpful, it will tire you out for the night so you sleep better.

LB – drat science. But! You didn’t shave your legs!

FB – shoot

LB – victory!

FB – Wait! When you go home to collect your phone, pick up your footless tights and wear those. No-one will know that you’re hairier than a yeti in mid-winter

LB – please don’t make me go to the gym

FB – just go to the gym you lazy bum


Which brain do you think won?!


On the quest for physical fitness…!

I have been in actual physical pain since my first induction at the gym on Monday. I really think my trainer nearly killed me!

It was quite fun whilst I was there, but stupidly I didn’t do a cool-down as I had to leave to get on the motorway before lunchtime. I’ve paid for that error MANY times over…I feel like I’ve¬†had a hot water bottle permanently attached to me for the past few days to ease my muscle aches.

Today isn’t too bad though, I can actually lift my cup of tea without aching.

My trainer did my measurements and fitness tests, and I managed 10 press-ups in 2 minutes (impressive considering I have zero upper arm strength) and 15 sit-ups in 2 minutes. My target for my first review (4-6 weeks time) is 15 press-ups and 20 sit-ups.

I was pretty chuffed though as my lung capacity is 99%.¬†I was pretty wheezy that day so that’s quite impressive. My lung ‘age’ is 24, which my trainer was pleased about.

She gave me a routine to follow each time I go to the gym, which hopefully will be twice a week – once on Mondays and one evening. None of the classes are ‘grabbing me’ yet, but we’ll see.

I was quite surprised that I¬†really enjoyed my workout on Monday, it was fun to push myself¬†and have a little challenge. I don’t remember enjoying it as much when I was younger, though I must have because I went regularly.

I even like the staff, because they don’t seem like the stereotypical, primped and perfect,¬†super-enthusiastic gym bunnies. The three I’ve met so far are all pretty ordinary! Of course, they are probably super-fit and could run circles round me, but that’s ok.

My workout consists of:

1500m on the rower, working on beating my own timings (8m5s on Monday),

10 minutes on the X-trainer,

5 minutes on the stepper (I’ve done steppers before, but this one is the weirdest contraption I’ve ever seen!)

5 minutes on another weird contraption whose name I don’t know (you kind of sit like you’re on a bike, and pump your legs to keep the weights between certain markers?!)

then 10 minutes on the treadmill, alternating between walking and jogging as my “cool-down”.

My trainer put down time on the treadmill and the rower, even though I hate them, because they are good for cardio and all-round fitness…but she did leave off the main¬†weights for me, since¬†she don’t think someone whose upper arms measure 23cm would cope. Maybe when I’m a little stronger…

Not quite like this, though!