My whole life, I’ve always been a huge reader. In fact, I did a trip to the PNW with my parents when I was eight that pretty much mirrored the one I did a few weeks ago. However, I hardly remember that trip because I spent the entire time curled in the back of the car with my face in a book. Actually, many books. We stopped at every used book store along the way so that we could sell off one lot and purchase another.
My book consumption dropped alarmingly last school year. It got to the point where I didn’t even bother with the library because I wasn’t able to finish a selection before it disappeared from my Kindle. I can certainly blame some of this on time. It was an all-consuming year at school and yoga absorbed much of what spilled over. Some was due to grief; after losing Tiger, I struggled to focus on the words on the page. I can also attribute some of the decline to my increased use of podcasts; I found myself listening more than reading (which usually accompanies activity for me, not rest). And then of course, some has to be chalked up to just plain habit. Inertia is a bitch.
Since returning from my trip, I’ve been once again devouring books. It feels like returning home. I’d forgotten how much escaping into a well-written novel or intriguing piece of non-fiction can relax me. And I need all of the help with that I can get.
I enjoy music, but I haven’t been one to play music much in the background since high school. With the recent uptick in quality and availability on podcasts (A funny aside here – my ex tried to get me to listen to podcasts for years and I resisted, claiming that my auditory processing sucks. Now, I subscribe to probably fifty of them!), I don’t even listen to music in the car anymore.
Now, I love podcasts. I learn so much and enjoy the intimacy and vulnerability of the conversations. But they do have two downsides for me. First, as I mentioned before, I’m doing something else while I’m listening (walking the dog, running, weeding, doing laundry, etc.), so it’s not restful for my body. What I’m now also realizing is that it’s also not restful for my mind. I need to think, but I also need breaks.
Enter Spotify. I downloaded the app over a year ago to access some of the playlists created by my yoga teachers. I downloaded it, but rarely opened it. Until last weekend. I finally started investing the time and energy into finding and “favoriting” some music that I love.
And now, I not only have a favorites playlist, but I’m also enjoying the daily mixes that Spotify curates for me. Time well spent.
Speaking of curation, I keep getting tempted to try Stitch Fix, but the program isn’t really in my budget. I learned yesterday that ThredUp (an online consignment store) offers a similar box. I filled out the order form and then checked out the reviews before I entered my payment info. From all accounts, it seems like a dud. Oh well, I guess I’ll stick with the free recommendations from my library and Spotify.
I enjoy trying out new fitness activities. So when Buti Yoga streamed across my Facebook feed on Monday, I was intrigued. Yesterday, I found a free online “sample” video and gave it a go. It was…weird.
I wasn’t expecting yoga per say, since the facebook ad didn’t look super yogarific. In fact, the routine was a strange mix of yoga, a pole-dancing class and a Jane Fonda video from the 80’s (although the leg warmers and leotards have been replaced with bralettes and booty shorts).
I didn’t get a stretch. My heart rate stayed low. And my booty struggled to achieve some of the prescribed gyrations. And even after an hour long class, I have no residual soreness today.
I guess it’s not for me.