Last night, I completed the 108 day challenge. This quest for daily yoga and meditation has been a transformative process for me and I’ve learned a lot — about yoga and about myself. With each class, be it meditation, power, hot tapas, vinyasa or, more recently, vin and restorative, I’ve learned a little something. Perhaps it was as big as gaining access to a new pose, or as small as learning the best time to roll out my towel to avoid the slip ‘n slide effect. Big or small, it all adds up to 108 lessons learned.
When I think back to my yoga practice, as it was at the beginning of the year, I am blown away by the change. That balance that I was after, at least the physical aspect, was acquired months ago. Poses that I figured I might explore in a year or two are now within the realm of possibilities. A few of them are well on the way to being attained even. Of course, I still have the other, less tangible component of balance to work on. Life balance is more important than standing on one leg. I’ll be working on maintaining that for all of my life.
In this past 4 months, I’ve also learned a new sort of dedication — similar to training for endurance events — only different. I’ve pushed the envelope so to speak (maybe too far on occasion) and also found a more gentle side to my practice (yin for example). With 4 months of twists, lengthening, and holding strong, I’ve gained quite a bit of flexibility and strength too. Additionally, I’ve gathered more awareness of my body’s curves (mainly my newly understood scoliotic “s” curve) and learned how to work within my limitations — modifying when needed. Since I don’t enjoy being in pain, this lesson has been huge.
It’s all been fabulous indeed. Even so, perhaps the most auspicious element to the 108 has been being a part of the community of amazing people practicing and teaching at my yoga studio. Not just those chasing the 108…but EVERYONE. Together, we encourage and inspire each other. And although I hope to now begin growing my home-based yoga, I am certain that the majority of the time I practice will remain with these wonderful yogis I now call friends.