My mom, brother, and I have been talking about doing the Northshore Century bike ride today since…well…probably last year! Although my mom and I weren’t planning on riding the entire 100 miles, we had hoped to get in a nice 50 or 60 mile ride. My bike training has been fairly non-existent, but up until yesterday, we were still undecided. I’m not a person who usually talks about a race and doesn’t follow through although I feel like there has been more of that this year. Since I had talked and blogged about the ride, I didn’t want to totally abandon it. However, it was obvious chatting with my mom on our way down to the city yesterday that neither one of us was feeling the ride. Mostly, due to lack of training. In my case, this is a combination of a broken toe not fitting into my bike shoes, travel, weekends in class, and an overwhelmingly busy life. This last reason was the biggest decider in nixing the race in favor of meeting my mom for Yin Yoga tonight.
This decision allowed me to have a lovely no-pressure Sunday with no alarm clock, minimal time spent in my car (as opposed to driving the hour to the race start), watching the Bears, doing some laundry, and making veggie chili. I also got took a 15 mile bike ride spending an hour along the forest preserve path admiring the contrast in colors and changing leaves.
It was a windy but relaxing ride with beautiful views around every corner!
Upon arriving home, I realized that I was much more in the mood for a 1 hour bike ride today than a 6 hour ride. I made a green smoothie and settled in to cheer on the Bears, looking forward to a rejuvenating yoga class.
Since the BOY has been hard at work on a paper and a few speeches ALL weekend, it was easy to get away Sunday night to attend my studio’s Yin class. I took this class a few weeks ago and loved it. In previous classes, I have done some Yin style yoga but never an entire class. If you’ve never heard of/tried Yin yoga, I will try to describe it to you. During a Yin class, you spend most of the time in sitting or supine (laying down). Whereas in typical yoga practice, your muscles are active. During Yin, each posture is passive, held without muscle activation using breathing and gravity to move deeper into the pose. Postures are held for a long time (up to 5 minutes) in order to stretch beyond your muscles, moving into your fascia and connective tissues as well. The goal of a Yin class is to increase range of motion and flexibility and decrease stress.
Tonight’s class began with restorative bridge, which is one of my favorite asanas. We continued the rest of the class on or next to the wall. 90 minutes later, my mom and I emerged feeling incredible and relaxed! Yoga, especially Yin, is the ideal way to end your weekend. You spend plenty of time stretching out the sore muscles that you’ve worked all weekend and mentally, ending with an extended meditation, prepares you for the week ahead. My brother impressively rode 100 miles today, but my mom and I agreed that we were in need of a different kind of Sunday. It was the perfect change in plans!
Have you ever tried Yin yoga?