Two unpredictable things happened yesterday which got me thinking a lot about how I approach exercise. In high school, I used to go on the elliptical for 45-60 minutes a couple times every week, lift some weights and go to the same yoga class every week. Nothing ever changed except for my playlist. If I switched back to that same schedule now I would be bored and getting out of bed would be such a drag.
I have 4 or 5 running routes around campus and take different runs depending on how much time I have (or how far I want to go) or whether I have done the same one too many times recently and am bored of it. All of them are hilly and I like to know exactly how long I will be running flat, when I’ve gotta hoof it up a hill and where the biggest one is and also when I get to run down. It’s comforting and fun. Yesterday, I only had time to run 3 and Becky explained one of her favorite routes. I had no idea what to expect and finished feeling challenged and successful. I ran the whole thing and when I would over think the small stuff like when I would finally reach the top and when the next turn was, it was useless. I was able to focus on continuing and taking in this completely new neighborhood.
At Core Power I go to a couple different teachers throughout the week who all have distinct styles and I like their different classes for different reasons – cardio party with pumping music or spiritual classes with lots of stretching and feel like I get a lot of variety in the classes and in my practice. But at the same time, I know in each teacher when we will hit the mat to do some abs, how many sequences we will do of each flow and when we wind down for final corpse pose. Yesterday, I was heading to one of my favorite teacher’s classes and was shocked when I saw someone else checking students in. When class started up, you could feel the skepticism in the room. Everyone else was doubting her too. As we settled into child’s pose, she broke the tension: “Don’t worry, I know what I’m doing”. As the xx began playing I sighed with relief. The next hour was awesome. I didn’t know what to expect and her style was unique and challenging. In my regular classes, I know when and if we will launch from one pose to the next. In this new class, each next step was a surprise and I found myself being able to hold poses I usually cannot and take more complicated variations. I couldn’t over think anything.
This morning I went to one of the regular Yoga Sculpt (weights) classes I go too and liked the challenge, but it was different than the challenges yesterday. My workout schedule has variation but is pretty predictable. I think that continuing to try new classes and new routes will help me take my practice and running to the next level. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes!