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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

525,600 minutes...

"... how do you measure a year in the life?" - lyrics from the broadway musical, "rent"

i've just passed a milestone in my yoga journey. saturday, april 23rd 2005, was the day i took my first yoga class after undergoing ACL surgery in january of that year. i had spent four months of quality time with my physical therapist to strengthen the muscles surrounding my reconstructed knee, and i decided that it was time to work on regaining the flexibility that i had lost. i wanted so badly to get my knee back to normal, because at that time, it felt anything but.

prior to that wonderful knee incident, i took yoga classes very infrequently, usually only when the gym had a promotion going on or when a friend invited me to tag along. yes, i was stretching. yes, i was relaxing. but no, i wasn't really burning the calories i wanted to burn. so i'd go back to the treadmill or the weight machines and work out until i felt the burn. and the sweat. hmmm... me one tough cookie!

that was then.

and look where i am now -- yoga every day! and not only am i burning the calories, but i'm also in better shape than i ever was! who would've guessed?

i am of the belief that bad things happen for a reason. now i'm not saying that i'm glad that i tore my ACL because it got me eventually obsessed with all things yoga; however, it was my need to move past feeling crippled that ultimately led me down the yoga path. i've had the chance to interact with many students and teachers along the way, and my life is richer from the experience.

earlier this evening, i took shiva rea's vinyasa flow class at sacred movement. i remember the first time i took her class -- she was calling out poses in sanskrit and i had no idea what they were. what was a parivrtta trikonasana? an utthita parsvakonasana? an ardha chandrasana? and how was i supposed to flow from one pose to another if i had to keep looking around to figure out what i had to do? i was one frustrated student.

this time, i was able to keep up with the class, but after watching her and many of her regulars flow smoothly and effortlessly through the poses, i kept being reminded that i still have a long way to go in my yoga practice. i have to continue to work on becoming more flexible. on balancing for longer periods of time. and on being able to do a handstand (among other things).

so where will i be another 525,600 minutes from now? being finally able to do handstands, splits, and more advanced twists and binds? at the rate i'm going, if i keep at it, who knows?