73 Days of Yoga - John's Journey

I participated in the Up Yoga summer challenge last July and August.    During those two months I took class every day.  In fact, over a 72 day period beginning in late June I took 73 Baptiste Power Yoga classes...this is my story.

When Lindsay suggested that I sign Up for the summer challenge, I was initially reluctant and full of excuses.   This really isn't my thing; I am not in shape for that sort of thing; it seems like a big commitment, when will I find the time to take classes; I don't need to change; not this time but I am in for the next one for sure.    Thankfully she was insistent.

The first few days and weeks were challenging physically and mentally, no doubt...but then nearly everything shifted and I was in the zone.   Finding time to make class became a priority and I looked forward to finding a way to make it a fit in my busy and not always static schedule.   I experienced amazing changes in my body, mind and life during and as a result of the summer challenge.   

Physically, I lost weight and managed to "solve" persistent lower back pain that had been an issue for me for over a year.   I am no longer inhibited and have full range of motion.   My 32" waist jeans that were getting dusty on the shelf are TOO BIG.   At 42 years of age I am in the best shape of my life and have more energy and drive, in nearly all ways, than I can remember at any time in my life.    

Mentally, I found more openness, focus and calm.   Instead of being an initial "no" for most things, I am more open minded and find it easier to not make excuses for why I cannot or should not do things.   While I have never lacked focus, the frequent practice enhanced my ability and willingness to find a drishti off my mat.    Finally, I am less irritable and quick to snap at formerly irritating situations (e.g. kids not eating dinner, doggy accident in the house).    

Finally, I feel like I have a fuller life.   I got to spend a significant amount of time with other students and teachers building new friendships and deepening existing relationships with a great group of people.   It was also humbling to hear other people use the term "inspiration" when they saw my streak.    I left with a deeper sense of connection as I was also doing it for the community, not just for me.   

I look forward to the next challenge...and maybe I will even let someone else win this one :)   I hope to see you all in class soon!

-John-