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{18/04/2012}   Yoga: cat, seagull, cow and general flexibility

Yoga with a cat in the room
This morning was session three of a yoga DVD (Kisen, Yoga for Weight Loss).  Sessions two and three were hindered by the presence of my cat, Izzy.  Aside from that, it has also been revelatory that when I last used this DVD over a long period of time, about ten years ago when I was just starting my RSI-inducing training as a stenographer, I was able to do a lot more of the contortions.  I now struggle to join hands over shoulder/under shoulder up my back, among other things.  I feel riddled with restrictions, not least because of Izzy!
Day two, doing early gentle stretches and breathing things, Izzy starts yowling at the door to be let in.  At an appropriate moment, I let her in.  She trots in with her toy cow in her mouth.  This is worrying because it means she’s in play mode.  I get back to my stretches, etc, slightly aware there’s a cow being lobbed about and Izzy is racing across the room to catch and kill the cow.  Then Izzy’s new seagull friend lands at the table on the balcony by the door, next to where I’m yoga-ing.  So Izzy and the seagull start their daily ritual of squawking/yowling.  I’m not kidding, it’s really bizarre this cat and gull relationship!  So a bit distracting.
I am then – I really am not exaggerating with anything I am saying here – in a precarious balancing position whereby my bottom is acting as the base of a V.  It is not a move that comes naturally to me and I am prone to suddenly drop my legs or arms (yes, my arms are horizontal, ie not touching the ground – tense in the extreme).  So Izzy then appears behind my back, tail up, rubbing against my back for a stroke.  I have to Psssshhhht her away.  She returns.  I have to throw the cow to get rid of her.  I do not feel quite the karma I should.
Today was the most challenging session.  I called her into the lounge before I started.  Unfortunately she was again in possession of her cow.  While yoga-ing I did have to divert my attention and throw the cow for her to retrieve.  She continued with that then decided it was time for a bit of attention so, albeit at a slightly less stressful moment, approached with tail aloft ready for stroking.  She got the odd hasty pat.  Towards the end of my session there is a bit where, lying on your back, you elevate your legs and back then drop your legs behind your head.  Just prior to this tense manoeuvre, I discover the cow behind my head.  Disaster is averted.  This is right at the end of my c50-minute session.  The next part is the relaxation part where you are “bathed in the golden glow of your awareness”.  I love this part because you have finished the hard stuff and get a nice relaxing five minutes or so, at the end of which I always feel really good.  So there I was, lying at peace, Kisen is talking you through relaxing your body … when Izzy starts walking around me sniffing (she actually makes a clicking sound when she sniffs).  I wonder if she thinks I’m dead and is wondering what to do.  She continues clicking, I try to focus on relaxing and bathing myself in my golden glow of awareness.  It goes quiet on the Izzy front.  Then, she climbs onto my tummy, sits down and settles herself for a wee snooze!  Not quite the bathing glow I was aiming for!  At least she’s not a cat that kneads!
As for my yoga experience in general over this week, I have got into a routine of doing it before and I lost weight and got noticeably more supple.  I am hoping to achieve that this time; it makes me feel relaxed (bar cat interruptions), smugly achy and, possibly best of all, there is one move that gives my really bad shoulder a deep and thoroughly satisfying crack.

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