29 September 2011

Just. Get. There.

I really don't have too much to report. Work is more difficult than normal. There seems to be so little time right now. My last class was on Sunday, and it actually wasn't that bad. Since then, I've had chances to go but I've had little to no motivation. It is unseasonably hot here (my computer says it is 102.... cold front finally due tonight) and I feel like it is going to be a tough class today. My gear is ready. I'm dressed. Class is 43 minutes from now and still I have no desire to go. At all. It's going to be rough. It's going to be hot. I haven't eaten well the last few days weeks, nor have I stayed properly hydrated.

Why do I do this?

My struggles make the idea of actually going through nine weeks of Teacher Training seem even more impossible. I'm keeping up with the goings on in LA through several different blogs (just check my list). Those people are only in the second week.... don't think I could make it through one! I have so much respect for anyone who undertakes such a challenge. (Challenge.... I can't even muster the interest in attempting any sort of challenge; whether it's 7 days, 10, 30, or 60.)

Well, it's time. Shutting it down and heading to the studio.

Just.     Get.      There.


23 September 2011

Thought for the day...

"It's not the load that breaks you,

it's how you carry it."

-- Unknown

The #1 Star


 Note: Aside from the word "spine", there is nothing about yoga in this post. Since NHL.com shut down its fan site, I have nowhere else to post this. Still, I hope you enjoy.

     The sweater.

     The sweater flapping in the breeze.

     The sweater flapping in the breeze as he glided down the ice with indescribable grace and ease.

     That is Mike Modano.

     One of my sports heroes – the last sports hero of my youth -- hangs it up today.
Mike Modano will shortly sign a one day contract with the Dallas Stars, and then announce his retirement from the game he loves and graced for 21 seasons.

     The back story: the Minnesota North Stars packed their sticks and pucks and came south to Dallas in1993. Prior to that, my knowledge of ice hockey was as follows:

Watching one game of the ’75 Stanley Cup Final as a youngster.

The 1980 US Olympic upset of the Soviet Union.

Watching the odd playoff game on ESPN.

     When the move was announced, I was sucked in immediately. Most of my friends sniffed at me because it was hockey. A game from Canada. On ice. I didn’t care. I knew that it was fast paced, hard hitting, and players would stop and punch each other. Yes, there were very talented players, but that was lost among the pushing, hitting, and fighting. I knew there was a flashy player named Modano, but I didn’t think much about him.

     Then I saw him play.

      I saw how he did magical things with the puck. I watched him stop, turn on a dime, and be at top speed in one or two strides. He seemed to know where everyone was on the ice, and where everyone would be three seconds from now. He could deftly redirect a puck, or he could wind up and seemingly drill pucks through netminders.  In those early days, Modano was counted on to score, score, and score some more. He was also counted on to sell the game of hockey in North Texas. He did whatever was asked of him to help grow the Stars’ fan base. Interviews, appearances, whatever it took, Mike was there with his million watt smile and GQ looks. Men envied him. Women loved him. We all watched and cheered as he helped bring hockey to the forefront of Dallas’ sports conciousness.

     Of course, looks only go so far. In Dallas, where the Cowboys’ success has instilled a “Championship or Nothing” mentality, results matter. With Ken Hitchcock behind the bench, and an influx of talented players (Nieuwendyk, Hull, Zubov, Belfour, et. al), the Stars became a power in the NHL.  In 1999, they ascended the mountain, winning the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history. Dallas came close to repeating the following year, falling to New Jersey in the Final.

     Through it all, while being known as the “Face of the Franchise”, Modano never acted that way. Many have referred to him as, “… a superstar who doesn’t know he is a superstar”. There were personal and financial issues that arose, but he always acted with class and dignity.

     This past season, after Dallas bid him adieu (a move I will never forgive), Modano went home to Michigan to play with the Detroit Red Wings (the hated rivals). It was really sickening to see him with the winged wheel on his chest. He played in only 40 games due to injury, then spent the summer considering his future.

     I consider myself very fortunate to have been able to watch Mike Modano in person on a number of occasions. My favorite moment, aside from the Cup win, came on March 13, 2007, when Mike scored his 500th goal. I was there. Still have the ticket. It was one of those moments that send chills down your spine. Modano finished his career with 561 goals and 1,374 points, most ever by an American born player. He owns all sorts of franchise records as a Star. He played with grace and grit. He gave us a new hero here in town, and he never acted like the spoiled child that many athletes have become.

     Watch a highlight or two. None of what I said here will matter, for you will be mesmerized by one thing.

The sweater.

21 September 2011

Thought for the day...

"How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?"

-- Satchel Paige

18 September 2011

Motivation (or lack thereof....)

I have sat down three four times today, trying to form a few coherent thoughts. Here goes nothing.

It has been a very hectic month, between work and a quick getaway weekend with my sweetie. There has been little time for yoga (we had planned to start our own little challenge but that had to be put on the back burner). We are tired. Drained. Exhausted. We had agreed to go to class at 10 this morning but I didn't wake up until 9:30, so nothing doing. Could have gone later in the day, but instead of hydrating I sat, watched football, and ate. And ate. And ate. I went slightly insane, I think. The thought of going to class was.... not repulsive.... not upsetting.... well, after breakfast, there was no real thought of going to class. Sedentary and slothful were the words of the day.... What does one do when the motivation wanes? When one is just too tired, or upset, or hungry or just doesn't want to?

Speaking of my practice, there were a couple of classes worth talking about. One featured a former instructor who returned from LA -- apparently worked/taught at the home office. Big on anatomy. Pushed us hard. In Pranayama (where it's supposed to be a count of six, right?), I counted to 12 on more than one inhale. Always telling us what bones and muscles were being used atthatparticularpointand don'tforgettobreatheandpushpushpushpush. Seriously, it seemed like she never stopped talking! It might have been the closest I'll ever get to attending a class actually taught by Bikram. As I recall, the class ran over by a few minutes, and everyone was beaten. I tried to keep up but by Triangle I was toast. I couldn't maintain my breath because I was chasing her words so badly. Yuck.

A few days later I was back in the room. One of the regulars was teaching and I had something of a breakthrough. In Hands-to-Feet, for the first time I really felt like I was folding at the waist, and I came sooooooo close to getting both hands directly behind my heels. Anyhow, when I pulled on my heels, I felt my upper body really move, really felt my torso being pulled towards the floor. The lesson for me was just how weak my abs and core muscles are. I admit I've never been a fan of sit-ups/crunches, but I need to find something to help strengthen them....

Last Thursday I attended the 6AM class which was taught by the studio director. I guess the (old) new teacher rubbed off... her class was a bit more brisk... a little quicker in and out of postures, with postures being held a (tiny) bit longer. I"m just not very flexible that early in the day (who is?) but it wasn't a bad class by any means. I was the only one who sat out Triangle (as usual)....  I tried to get there but my hamstrings protested as they normally do....

Going forward? No rest for the wicked. Work. Meetings. New program to implement. Will try to get to four classes this week. Should not be a problem to get there... just need to rediscover my motivation for being there.... 


Thought for the day...

Do not dwell in the past,

do not dream of the future,

concentrate the mind on the present moment.

--- Buddha

16 September 2011

Good Luck!!!

Just a very quick note today. My schedule has been very hectic, and I have not had a chance to compose my thoughts. That said, I did want to say that the Fall session of Teacher Training begins Monday in Los Angeles. I wish ALL the trainees the best of luck with their journey. Especially my friends in the Bikram blogging world:

Gamebred @ bikram or bust

Also, a special "Good Luck" to one of our own at BYFW: a fellow student and one of my work-study friends, Shannon. Hope I can be at his first class!!

Godspeed and Safe Travels to all!!!!