So whilst I'm a long way off from perfecting this pose it's good to get a photo to see where I'm at. A quick picture search will show you that my back leg should be completely straight and in alignment with my body. Stretching my leg out at the moment results in a faceplant!
First outing for my LSST jersey. However I was far from the skate scene from which the purchase was intended for. Cycle/skate jerseys are actually really good for yoga as it doesn't slip and try to suffocate you while you're downward dogging!
Slowly slowly progress is being made. I'm not able to make the stand every time and I have been less than confident when I tried moving away from the wall. Today it was a solid 2 seconds of floating that felt much longer at the time, hence my excited energetic leap at the end!
New Year's challenge is the handstand. First time I've filmed myself doing this and I can see there's a lot more work to do. Getting used to the idea of being upside down though.
Without doubt the Berlin Double Marathon weekend was the pinnacle of the year. I finally achieved a sub 1:30 skate marathon time as well as accomplishing my first ever run marathon. The training was tough both physically and mentally. Along the way I also completed a bunch of other new races, including a number of other double event weekends and even had time to design a medal for one of the events. I lost a GoPro but got this massive medal holder. (I still would have preferred my camera). This has been an action packed year that has ended with me enrolling in yoga. Whilst I've dabbled with yoga with friends before, I'm now enjoying actual classes and the contrast it gives to my usual sporting activies.
I've already signed up for a few obstacle events next year. For me it was disappointing to see that some events, namely Nuclear and Nuts Challenge have increased their "early bird," prices by £30 on top of what it was this time last year! (I'll be skipping them this year). There are quite a few other events to keep me busy besides anyway.
Overall 2016 will be a little low key than this year, but the absence of marathon training should mean I can focus my energy on other things!
2015 events that gave finishing mementos: The Nuts Challenge (2 laps) ; Dirty Dozen (London South); Electric Run (London); Urban Ninja (Tooting Bec); Tower of London Run (10k); Spartan Race (Allianz Park); Nuclear Rush (6k); Tough Mudder (Midlands); London River Rat Race; Dublin Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon; London Inline (half) Marathon; Run to the Beat (Wembley); Berlin Inline Marathon; Berlin Run Marathon.
Last year I purchased my yoga mat after getting carpet burns on my lower back. That's the 30 days abs challenge for you!
My friend Rene showed me a few moves in the past which began my curiosity with yoga. I have looked into partaking in yoga in the past but I had plenty of activities to keep me busy. However as I'm easing off the run and skate after my marathon this seems like the best opportunity to give yoga a shot.
My yoga mat and I went for Yoga with Babs. This particular session I went to was a more advanced, physically and mentally challenging one. I decided on this as the class was convenient with my work timetable, plus Babs said I could take the exercises at my own pace.
It definitely was an intense class. Inevitably on my initial yoga session I felt like a plonk doing the poses for the first time. I could feel muscles shaking like crazy with certain testing positions, but it was amazing and inspiring to see the others and Babs floating between poses. Babs was great, giving me additional guidance when I needed. She kept the class fun and even made me crack a smile even when that 'downward dog,' was like fire to my upper body! Apparently that pose will become a resting point with experience. Something to strive for...!
The class ended with some meditation that left me a bit spaced out. On the train ride home things seemed extra loud and a little surreal. I guess it gave me a chance to pause and step out of my usual hectic London routine.
Had some friends over for the weekend and we had a brief go at some of the yoga poses I've tried before. It was fun as we tried to help each other out. My friend Dan managed to do the Crow on the first attempt which is very impressive.
I got them to photo me so I could see exactly how my posture is. Seems like it's never quite as well poised as you think!
Ten months since my friend Rene showed me two yoga holds and I’ve managed to sustain the positions long enough for the camera! My poses don't look as clean as when the pros yogis do it but I'm really happy to be able to hold these positions now.
I have been trying every now and again, when I could build myself up for another potential faceplant. A cushion is essential!
Surprisingly these poses do not require as much arm strength as you might think. When you’re in the hold it actually feels quite nice and you can hover there for quite a while..
(It’s worth taking a photo of yourself as initially I thought my body was straight but in fact was curled up).
"Any tips, reviews and advice are my own opinions and are not to be taken as professional view points. The information on this site is what has worked for me and is here for guidance only, but I hope you gain insight into the various activities I partake in." Jonathan Chen