There’s No Crying In Yoga

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I hate doing yoga. Well, that’s not entirely true…I really just hate doing things that I’m not good at, and I’m not good at yoga.  So I guess it IS entirely true. If I ever suddenly get good at yoga, I won’t hate it. ‘Cept I know I’m not going to get better unless I do it more. And so the cycle goes. In the meantime: I hate yoga.

My friend Julianne teaches yoga and after a year of her nagging me nicely asking me if I wanted to attend her class, I caved.  I brushed the thick layer of dust off my yoga mat that I had bought for boot camp several years ago and put my yoga face on.  (I don’t know what my yoga face is, but it’s probably one that looks like I am in a lot of pain…)  

 “How hard could it be, it’s a bunch of stretches and stuff.  You got this.” I gave myself a little pep talk before entering the room for my very first class. And the first half of the class was pretty easy to follow along minus the weird names of the poses. “Downhill dogs,” “Turtle touches,” “Shackanag-what?”

About halfway through the class, I really started to sweat. This stretching shit was NOT easy!! Then, we had to do all kinds of balance stuff and things started to heat up.  I am not really what anyone would call “coordinated.”  The expression, “Bull in a chinashop” could have been coined by someone watching me try to be graceful.  I am like Chris Farley on crack at all times- a jerky, jumpy ball of nerves and energy with virtually no control over my motions.

As I attempted not to fall over like a tree being attacked by a chainsaw, yelling “TIMMMMBBEERRRRR” on my way down, I started to really get frustrated.  “This is BULLSHIT!” I thought. “Yoga is all about using your own body weight. This is SO UNFAIR. Of course it’s easy for those skinny broads, because I have way more body weight than they do!!!!” But, I persevered.

The next pose was some body contortion of sorts and I found myself bent over with my head between my legs.  I glanced over at my right ankle. Then my left.  WHAT IN THE ACTUAL  HELL had become of my ankles? I had KANKLES! They were so fat and enormous and awful.  How had I gotten so out of shape? “You are a fat cow, Tracy. Nobody else here has kankles!!”

That’s when I stopped being able to tell the difference between sweat dripping down my face and the tears.  The more I teary I became, the more my nose started to run.  Soon, I was a teary, sweaty, snotty Gumby-resembling disaster, twisted and bent in all kinds of positions that didn’t feel natural.  Screw this.

Into the bathroom I marched, ready to beak up with yoga before it could break up with me. That’s a strategy that hasn’t exactly fared well in the past but there’s a first time for everything. As I splashed water on my face, I glanced at my reflection in the mirror. Big mistake. I was a red, blotchy mixture of cry-baby face and blood pumping from the exhaustion of an out-of-shaper trying to move muscles I had forgotten existed.  I blew my nose and took a deep breath and evaluated the wreck staring back at me.

I took a good hard look and I decided I need to have a tough conversation with myself.

“Tracy, if you want to see change, you have to do something different. You can’t keep doing the same thing and expect different results.”

“Yeah, but it’s HARD!!!!” I whined.

“Of course it’s hard.  It’s supposed to be hard.  If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it.  The hard…is what makes it great.”

“I mean are you serious right now? You’re giving me a pep talk using Jimmy Dugan lines from ‘A League of Their Own’?” I snorted.

“Umm, technically you’re giving you a pep talk using Jimmy Dugan lines but whatever, yeah I mean it’s a good movie and you have to admit…he’s got a point.” I said to myself.

Myself was not impressed.

“Pff. If you were going to use a Jimmy Dugan line, I think ‘There’s no CRYING in yoga!!’ Would have been a lot more effective and witty.  You know Tom Hanks gets  that high- pitched voice and he’s all, ‘There’s no CRYING—‘”

“YEAH I GET IT- I’ve seen the movie too…But look at me!! I wasn’t cut out for this! I’m a mess!”

“True. You are a mess. But seriously, you’re not a quitter.  Just go back in there. And hurry up! People are going to think you’re taking a dump in here if you stay much longer…”

“Well, what if I just don’t go back in? Huh? Then nobody will think I’m taking a DUMP- they’ll just think I LEFT! Because that’s what I’m doing. I’m leaving. So there, dummy!”

“Oh yeah, DUMMY- well how you gonna get home? You left your purse with your KEYS in the yoga room….idiot.”

“Ugh. I am an idiot. You’re right, I have to go back in. Crap.”

“HA!! I’m totally right. I’m always right. And you took so long now they’re really going to think you’re taking a dump!”

“I’m not taking a dump! And shauddup because you are me so they’re going to think both of us were taking a dump and….gah! I need to get back in there before someone walks in here and catches me talking to myself and has me locked up!”

And so I went back to the class. And you know what, it wasn’t that bad. In fact, I’ve been back to yoga several times since…and I’m kinda starting to like it even though I still suck at it.  But you know what? I haven’t teared up or left the class mid-way since, so…#babysteps.

So the moral of the story is, start what you finish- it doesn’t matter if the only reason is because you left your car keys where you started. And try things that are hard- change is hard, but you gotta put yourself out there and give it a go, even if it’s uncomfortable. And lastly, don’t talk to yourself out loud in public.  Because it’s weird yo. And not everyone will understand.

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 Thanks for reading! ~Tracy

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18 Responses to There’s No Crying In Yoga

  1. Cuz says:

    This is one of my favorites. And next time you can call me if you don’t want talk to a mirror. I’ll do my best Jimmy Dugan… before I slip into my best Mae Mordabito.

    • Tracy says:

      Thanks Cuz, you’re always here for me- Can you sneak a little Marla in there too? (Now I am singing “It Had to be You” in my husky voice)

  2. KT says:

    This is one of my favorites also. When reading I totally feel like I’m an invisible person watching this go down – and I’m sorry to say – laughing my ass off! I mean that pep talk with the mirror – I can’t. I love the way your mind works!! Xo

  3. Jeanine says:

    This is brilliant Tracy, I too felt this way when I first tried yoga. I plead and bargained with myself praying if I could just get through one class I wouldn’t be considered a failure. I ended up loving it and taught it for ten years! It’s amazing the results if we just keep on keeping on. Well done, great blog you had me giggling with your A league of their own references.

    • Tracy says:

      Jeanine! I can’t believe you started off as a cry-baby-ish type of yoga-doer and you wound up a teacher! Way to go- now that’s inspiration even Jimmy Dugan can’t produce!! :)

  4. Rachel E. Bledsoe says:

    I loved this so much on so many levels. I always thought something was wrong with me, my nose also runs when I work out. As if working out doesn’t produce enough bodily fluids, we need to add snot in the mix. And “A League of their Own” is an all time favorite. I loved that you used the pep talk to take you back to the game. Finally, they cannot possible think you are taking dump, ever. Never ever. Loved it. So glad you stuck with it and have kept going back.

    • Tracy says:

      I feel so much better that it isn’t just me!! Thanks for the encouragement, I’m sure it’s not as bad as I imagine it to be in my head …I HOPE!!

  5. Molly says:

    I feel this way in pilates. The class is me and a bunch of old women, and any of them could kick my ass. But I’m going to keep going, so that someday I could kick ass too. thanks for the encouragement.

  6. Not A Bug says:

    Keep up those pep talks! XOXO

  7. Sunflower says:

    Ha! A great lesson in a fun post! Maybe I should start Yoga too?? (I haven’t moved my behind in a year!!)

  8. kate says:

    I love how when you write it’s like you’re actually talking. In unrelated news, I am not made for yoga. Every time I “relax” and go to my “zenith place” a fart eases out so I start laughing which in turn makes me pass more gas…a vicious cycle. I was asked to leave once. But in my defense, that’s what happens when I eat a big salad.

  9. I would rather shave my butt than do yoga. (Except that in trying to do that, I probably WOULD be doing yoga…so never mind. Bad analogy.) In other news, you are awesome for keeping up with something that makes you want to die. <3 xoxo

  10. Melissa says:

    You are awesome!! Yoga is hard, that is probably why I don’t do it. LOL I love the message, and love your blog!! :)

  11. Bonnie says:

    Lmfao I am a bull in a china shop. My parents said that a lot when I was growing up. Hahhaha I die laughing when I hear it.

  12. Christina Reno- Johnson says:

    I would have died. I thought I was going to fall over from embarrassment once at a spinning class. I was stupid and ate before going and because of stomach issues I nearly crapped my shorts after we got started. I walked super fast out squeezing my ass cheeks together and praying I wouldn’t shart myself. Lol

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