The process is meant to be simple, spontaneous, without videos or books. However, in the distant past, I had taken courses. I later forgot all about it, although I promised myself I would get back into it.
What I have retained from the yoga practice of that time is the breathing, some poses, and attitudes. It is important to breathe, both in yoga and in meditation. What I retained from these forms of wellness is mindfulness of the moment.
For a year, I did moderate cardio with an elliptical trainer in my room. At the same time, I bought new books, subscribed to an online program, purchased a good mat, but didn’t move forward.
I don’t know what finally prompted me to get back into it. Let’s go with the simplest explanation : I just had the desire.
I start up the Endel app and watch for a while the animated curves drawing some wise aesthetic, switch on the exercise monitor on my watch, and choose yoga. This will calculate the effort, if any. The result will be recorded somewhere in the cloud without me paying any more attention than that.
I did the same for the elliptical. My goal was to improve my cardio. I used to read, watched series on Netflix, but got a bit bored with it, both the effort and the episodic stories from the big streaming giant. My cardio may have improved, but I don’t know. My all-knowing watch gives me about the same results as a year ago.
With my little yoga, it’s easier. I start by raising my hands, stretching my arms while looking out the living room window. Then I lift one leg. The left one, which I had broken in 1998, causes me to balance problems, while the right one does not hesitate to keep me straight.
So I listen to my body, my first home. Year in, year out, the injured side ended up imitating the non-injured side. It’s a small victory, but I don’t get too excited about it. Healing will always be a controlled wound, like those cracks in the earth’s crust that threaten to release new lava at any moment.
I take a deep breath, stretch my belly, bring my outstretched arms to the ground, which I manage to touch. The muscles at the back of my legs don’t like it, but again, they don’t protest anymore after a month of trying. I manage to touch the floor with my fingers in this way and even briefly press my palms against it.
Then come the imitations of the poses I learned in my classes. I don’t always have the balance or the patience to go through with it. It depends on the day’s complexity, whether I do the exercises in the morning or in the evening, whether I am stressed or lonely.
The exercise I always do is the head-down dog followed by the plank. I don’t hold this powerful push-up position for long, as my arms don’t have the strength they used to. I often end up with a quiet cobra. The sequence forms a kind of wave, and it feels great.
I listen, feel my body, the cracking of the joints, the movement of the muscles. I breathe, think about everything and observe without thinking.
But it only lasts ten minutes, sometimes fifteen. It’s just a little yoga, a form of prayer to myself. It must be good for me, but I don’t calculate the progress or the true nature.
My blood sugar level tends to rise slightly. I have other instruments for judging my organs, but I cannot deduce anything from them because I am not a doctor.
I am only an aging man who lives on an ephemeral island. I am just a life, still beautifully the same, lucky not to suffer so much, to have reached this age bourgeoisly.
I am aware of the intense sadness that is happiness. I am just one more question, one more anonymous breath.
And I stretch, I think of the sky in front of me, of my breath in my entrails. I am just that.