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ClareC is a community member who’s blogging for us about the
challenges of getting back into physical activity while living with cancer.
Mushrooms in my garden
homework: BREATHING! You guessed it, I went to yoga! I
arrived and was directed through a wonderful courtyard to some rooms at the
back. "Just head up the stairs" so up I go (looking the novice
that I am) and I see men and women of all ages lying there in all sorts of
complicated position…just relaxing before the class starts? I find my
inner self...HELP it's screaming at me, RUN, RUN! Luckily these are the
words/ actions that come out: "is this the beginners class?" So I
find myself in the right classroom and now let the yoga commence!
The second attempt at holding the Ohm for long enough comes out sounding like
some poor cat is being strangled. And then just relax in your cross-legged
sitting position...I would like to point out at this stage that I cannot, and
come to think of it, never have been able to sit "comfortably"
crossed legged. Ouch...and here was I under the impression that yoga was
low impact / gentle on your joints? Next is the eye yoga...now that was
near giggle disaster but luckily my "round the clock" ended up being
anticlockwise to everyone's clockwise so I avoided catching a cross-eyed glance
at a fellow yogi across the room.
It was not
any easy hour and a half. All aches and stiff joints, totally exposed and
you have to "tune in" to them - I'm used to just ignoring them!
The final relax then arrived...really lovely...relaxing...the instructor’s
soothing voice gently drifting into your mind..."your toes...are relaxed;
your knees....are relaxed; your back...is relaxed; your liver, kidneys and
spleen are relaxed...AAAAARRRGGHHH, quick, concentrate, where are they, can I
feel them? Are they relaxed...oh no, I forgot to breath...breath...ok,
fine...calm...just concentrate on the body parts I know the whereabouts
of. And then we are there...we have found our most relaxed and inner self
which is called total happiness...STOP...no, not my inner self...it is NOT
totally happy at the moment...the sunshine is clouded by various shades of dark
grey...oh no, how do I get myself around this hurdle as yoga is all about the
inner self...so a compromise. I need to concentrate on what good this
will be doing me and energising all the good vibes, making them strong enough
to shoulder all the bad ones out of the way...move over, sunshine and happiness
is coming through!
So again, I
survived. A different kind of surviving from the other activities I have
so far survived! And I did actually feel more awake and
"energised" when I got home rather than my groggy "I was up at
5am" feeling...it could also be that it wasn't another cold grey evening weather-wise?
And now I must practise: The shoulder stand (fine), the plough (not fine,
my feet don't reach the floor backwards over the top of my head); fish (not
fine, I am lying on my arms so they are aching from my weight on them and then
you have to lift your chest off the floor and use the top of your head to support
you). Breathing...I can manage that one!
more jogging, which is a bit easier in the warm mornings - only trouble is all
the other "dabblers" then come out too...and you then have to look as
if you are having a wonderful morning just gently jogging along the River
Thames...again I find my inner self...I can't repeat what it says!
was Parkfit and it was tough in the heat, 21 degrees at 9am…I’m not complaining
though…it was great fun, lots of shuttle run and ups and downs…they were the
hardest in the heat…I couldn’t jump up that fast or I just would have fallen
over again! The same goes for Cardio Tennis, really tough in the heat but
I loved it…and the heat must have had some effect as I did not open my mouth
after suggesting a game afterwards! I was a bit frustrated with how I was
hitting the balls this week so best to just leave it for the day and start
again tomorrow (theoretically speaking for whenever tomorrow comes).
2 weeks to go for me and week 12....is YOUR week. You will be writing the
final blog, with pictures too…not sure of logistics yet but just giving you the
heads up!! I will still be moving more but I want to hear what you
are up to, even if it's walking up the stairs when you didn't need to just the
once, or for the more energetic, cycling, walking, training for a Race for Life
or warming up for the Olympics…whatever it is, happy moving more! Oh, nearly
forgot, also keep breathing!!
If you need some help getting more physically active
during or after cancer treatment, order
a Macmillan Move More pack.
I think it's a fantastic idea to get the other community members involved in your final blog. I'd love to hear what they've all been up to.
Yes, Clare, it's a good idea to hear what others in the community are doing, INCLUDING ADMIN!
I was going to give you full marks for variety having tried most of the suggestions in the guide, but you missed out BOWLS. Good for maintaining flexibility, maybe you would have been able to sit cross-legged if you'd loosened up with a game of bowls first!
Seriously, (and I can be serious) your blogs have been a pleasure to read, and you sounded as though you were really enjoying it. That must have been an inspiration to many people and I wonder how many more move more packs have been despatched.
My own excercise has been walking, I've never been one for strenuous, but I must admit that I have found relaxation and pleasure in getting out into the country, but now the hot weather is here my walks have got shorter.
But I mustn't lose sight of my goal which is to walk across the Severn Bridge and back in aid of Macmillan on 1st July. You can check how generous all my friends have been on my just giving site.
Hah, ok, paddyman - I'm willing to share if Clare wants to include us!
Wow Clare, well done on the yoga front! I certainly couldn't do a plough or a fish or dog or whatever.... I used to do yoga a long time ago and it was great and I loved the relax at the end... I often got the giggles though too... You have made me think if might be good to try it again if I can find a gentle one that doesn't mind my post RT creaky hips etc!
I get tired reading the next bit about jogging and all that power heart running jumping stuff.. I am impressed!
I am still officially not allowed to swim, but have fallen in a few times and can walk 20 mins on the treadmill now which I am very happy about!
Great idea about others writing... if I am legitimately allowed to swim by then, I may confess to what I have been up to, but scared that scary nurse might see it and oooh I will be trouble haha
Give yourself a huge pat on the back and a big hug from me
Little My xxxxx
Clare, you never cease to astonish me! I don't know how you keep yourself motivated, your diary must be packed with exercise appointments. For someone who has only walked to, round and from the supermarket and hoovered through the house, the thought of all that movement is quite daunting I'm just about keeping to my self-imposed diet and have shed a couple of pounds, but I should do more! Maybe when this heat subsides ..
Thanks again for a delightful blog, and more power to your elbow as they say,
Love & hugs,
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