Ah, No! This is not another piece to remind you that how desperately you need my advice to keep on going during the current pandemic situation….
This is also not a post to tell you about the benefits of yoga and why you should go inside when you cannot go outside in these times….
Lastly, it will not carry any end note to join my virtual classes to know how and why to perform Surya Namaskar in order to stay attuned to your fitness goals….
This is a simple record of my own practice routine, that definitely experienced a change over the last one month or so, and the life lessons I revised from this changed routine of Surya Namaskar aka Sun Salutations during the lock-down time ( couldn’t help using this word but that’s how the dictionary defines the world’s status right now) .
Lesson 1: Reshuffling the Routine is good:
Surya Namaskar has been a component of my daily practice but it was just there – somewhere. Like 6-10 rounds of the salutation series was what I used to do and move to other set of asana. Sometimes, only 1-2 salutations were enough to create a momentum for the rest of my practice. But, when certain conditions were imposed in this isolation time that even stepping out of the house became a sweet memory of the past, I naturally wanted to invest more energy into scaling up my movement while respecting the imposed conditions. No! exhausting aerobics or zumba burnouts or crash diets were never my bait. I wanted something to manifest out of my own regimen. That is when I reconsidered my yoga practice sequence and decided to increase sun salutations.
Lesson 2: Slow and Steady is the key to up-scaling:
I did not decide to bring the salutations to the forefront of my practice and just blindly fast track it, counting the round ups in between huffing and puffing as if it is a task that I need to complete. I began my practice with a sequence of 12 rounds (the ideal number) on day 1 till day 4 and introduced a full sequence of another 12 rounds every 5th day. What started with 12 rounds gradually moved up to 24 to 36 to 48 and so on. I don’t set any timers. Once a series of 12 is complete, I pause to follow a few standalone asana or do a few repetitions of Malasana (The garland pose) or restore in Shashank asana (The child’s pose) . These pauses allow me to reflect, not indulge in mindless repetitions and enjoy the sync between my breath, body and awareness. Today, in week 6 of the lock-down, I am enjoying my Surya Namaskar sets (60 – 100 ) four to five times a week. Also, I make sure not to over exert my muscles or tire my body in any way so I chose to follow a 45 minute- 60 minute practice twice daily.
Lesson 3: Saying No Works!
Like almost every human on the planet right now, my movements are quite restricted. what do I do? Should I stress myself every day to meet the goals of 100 Surya Namaskar so that I can feel good about my body weight goal. First of all, I don’t have a weight scale 😛 Secondly, I do say no on days when my body and mind are not in harmony and gracefully enjoy the lazy days as much as I do my practice sessions.
Lesson 4: Stay Focused
While I took a slow and steady route, said no quite often and paused willingly many times, not once did I lose sight of what I had originally affirmed for. My focus was bang on. Staying focused has got a lot to do with being in discipline. You don’t go to something for a day or two or maybe for a week but you go to it more often than you don’t go to it. You consistently go to it!
Lesson 5: Rejoice in Impermanence
The current situation is not permanent and that is what I am celebrating – the impermanence. How the world has shrunk into apartments and shelter homes right now reminds me that no matter what, time holds more power than anyone or anything. That famous quote, ‘Life is what happens to you when you are busy making plans’ never held so much validity before. Relating it to my own reshuffled yoga asana practice routine, I constantly remind myself not to attach to it and pursue it with detachment.