Making an effort to stretch myself

Hey gang.

I have a dirty, horrible secret that I need to get off my chest.

(Urg, that conjures up some truly horrific imagery doesn’t it? It makes me think of a putrid, gelatinous squid laying waste to my body, its tentacles wedged into the crooks of my neck and the dip of my bellybutton.)



Why would I even write that? Now that I’ve conjured up that visual nightmare, I’ve only made this whole thing even worse.

Enough of this pseudo-Alien bullshazzle Ethel. Pull yourself together woman!


My secret doesn’t have anything to do with my sci-fi film proclivities, nor does it have anything to do with seafood (although you can bet your bottom dollar I’m not going to be ordering a plate of calamari anytime soon.)

My dark globule of shame is thus:




I should have just stuck with being eaten alive by a blood thirsty extra-terrestrial octopus.

And yet, alas, it is true.

To paraphrase Katy Perry: I did yoga and I liked it. (I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it.)

Jeeze Louise, I am losing all the cool points today, aren’t I?


So how did this all come about you might ask? (Or maybe just, you know, can you get to the point Ethel because you’re rambling like a rambling thing?)

It all started with the rain.

You see, here in Beautiful British Columbia© it rains like the absolute dickens. The relentless deluge we west coasters suffer through betwixt the months of October to April (and sometimes later) is of such magnitude that there is a good chance we will grow moss all over our bodies if we do not exercise constant vigilance.

This is fact.

So. As the drizzle has now descended upon our fair city, coupled by the fact that the days are growing ever shorter (and ever darker), I am trying my darndest not to reenlist at the gym, because a.) I’m trying to save money and b.) GYMS ARE THE WORST.

But it’s hard. Who wants to arrive home from work and go running outside in the pitch-dark pouring rain?

The absolute wettest I have EVER been on a run. Taken this past weekend.

That is bleak, bleak sauce.

However, I figure if I work really hard at it, a gym-free solution is doable.

For instance, because I am currently taking a break from my half-marathon training schedule, I have the option of going for much shorter, faster runs.

For instance, yesterday I burned through a 5 km while practicing my sprints/hill running.

I also have to admit that running in the rain isn’t always as dreadful as it sounds. Sometimes it’s actually pretty empowering and deliciously badass. Plus, it’s definitely manageable if you’re only doing it for 20-30 minutes at a time.

Further, no one is saying that should we get the odd nice weekend here and there I can’t take advantage and bang out a sweet 10-15k just to make sure I don’t backtrack in terms of my distance training.

The second part of of my gym-free workout plan is to do a crap load of resistance work, which means push-ups, pull-ups, squats, lunges, burpees, wall sits, planks – you name it.

And the plus side of all of this is that I can do all of these things in the comfort of my own home.

Okay, okay, I know what you’re all thinking: “WHAT ABOUT THE BLOODY YOGA!?”

I’m getting there, I promise.

Seeing as though I’ve been told that I should be practicing my downward dog and sun salutation for something like the past two-hundred years, last Sunday I finally thought to myself, “Enough of this bollocks. I might as well give it a go.”

Now, don’t get any crazy ideas that I actually went out a bought a mat and paid for a class or anything.

After a brutal session of burpees, jump squats, pull-ups, and hip raises, a twenty-minute beginners yoga class via Youtube (that I could do complete on the carpet in my bedroom) was looking pretty good.

And it was!

It was good.

It was so good in fact, that I’ve done the same video every night since, as well as an extra session of stretching.

The only fly in the ointment being that whenever I am doing my poses M walks around the house muttering “HANI PASHA” to himself, which completely ruins my concentration and sends me into uncontrollable giggle fits.

But I’ll take it.

In the end, I guess a leopard really can change her spots, as I have long ridiculed yoga and its disciples (living in Lotus Land it’s pretty hard not to, what with the city’s collection obsession with Lululemon and its competitors.)

So that’s it folks; that is my slimy, salacious secret.

I am a budding, neophyte yogi.

And I blame it on the rain.

Published by

Vanessa Woznow

Writer, runner, ranter, reader. I write about all things.

27 thoughts on “Making an effort to stretch myself”

  1. wear dew yew fined the time? are there, eh, 28 – 30 hour daze up yore way? (seems my daze have about 14 or so hours of recent. ain’t mutsch time to dew, eh, hardlee anythin). my brother has been “doin’ ” yoga for a while now, and i suspect it’s been dewwin him goood.
    good fer ya too!

    1. Thanks dude! We will see how this new path progresses. In the mean time, I think my clock has 24 hours on it…but with all that time travel I do I can never be sure…

  2. I tried hot yoga. Nearly killed myself. Not my best moment.

    “Dark globules” of yoga-induced shame aside, I nominated you for an award – not sure if you accept these things or not, but it’s there if you’d like it. You’ve probably got oodles of them sitting on your virtual blog shelf, so no offense taken if it’s not your thing. Just wanted to throw your name out there because of your overall proclivity for all-round awesomeness.

    1. I hear hot yoga can be gnarly! Some of my friends swear by it, some swear they will never again…

      And many thanks my good sir! Seriously, this is so very lovely of you. I am humbled :)

      1. Yes. I did my best to try to make her the opposite of me. I was partially successful. She gets a gold star in “Bitching 101”, LOL!

  3. The second I’d finished reading “GYM’S ARE THE WORST.” I got all these flashbacks of how bad the gym was, curiously I’ve never bothered with them so I instantly questioned what my source was: It was one of your rants (clearly a subtly memorable one) about how much you hate the gym :L

    Oh don’t worry, I put that apostrophe in for a laugh :L “There’s a glitch in the matrix!” Some people honestly think the world’s ending.

    1. Haha, it’s a constant theme with me, is it not? This constant wrestling with licensed work-out establishments…

      If I remember correctly, gyms can be craaaazy expensive in the UK. At least in Brum where we were living. It was much, much easier to take my chances with the outdoors.

      And apostrophe all you want! I am certainly not the grammar police :)

  4. Alright, here is the deal. I won’t make fun of you as long as you promise to master that stretchy punch/kick thing, levitation and fireball like Dhalsim from Street Fighter 2. And on the bright side; everyone looks good in yoga pants so now if you choose to wear them you can claim not to be a poser.

    1. I promise on my life to do this. It might take a while, but as soon as it is a done deal, I’ll video myself and stick it up on the internets. I’ve never actually played Street Fighter. Growing up we had the totally shite “Eternal Champions” on the Sega we got for free. The only other games we had were Aladdin (totally awesome sauce) and Michael Jackson (bloody creepy as heck.)

      1. Oh man. I didn’t really have videogames until I was a teenager (my parents thought we should read, what fools they were!) but Street Fighter 2 is kind of the classic fighting game in the genre. I played it anytime I had a quarter to spare.

        I feel like the Michael Jackson game was simply walking up to people and grabbing your crotch and they’d explode and every so often you’d have to moonwalk to beat a boss. But I may be misremembering it and that could have just been a nightmare.

        1. That is pretty much the Michael Jackson video game down to a T. It was absolutely nuts and completely creepy – running around, rescuing kids trapped in closets and trunks. Majorly effed up stuff here.

          I too had the books-or-perish parenting approach. We didn’t have cable for the longest time, and when we did get it, it was policed like mad.

          1. Yea, the only TV my older brother and I were allowed, probably until he was in high school, was educational programming, The Simpsons and Saturday Morning Cartoons. My younger brother was able to get away with less reading and more TV because my parents had given up by the time he rolled in.

          2. Seriously, Saturday morning cartoons FTW. Nothing better than settling down for a good couple of hours of Inspector Gadget, Captain Planet, what have you, eating my cheerios. HEAVEN.

  5. Ah!!! I’m so excited for you! I LOVE yoga and have for years. It can be such a good workout, shocking as that seems. :)
    I hung up my bike for the autumn/winter a little while back and we were going to get gym memberships, but like you, I loathe the gym. With the pup now we’re going to be walking and running (yes, in the dark, le sigh…) but I’m keeping up with the yoga too because it’s great.
    Keep me posted on how goes!! And you would look amazing in some yoga pants, I have no doubt. :) Hugs!

    1. Oh my goodness, it totally is, isn’t it? There are some poses that bring on the sweat but good!

      Ooooh, puppy walks in the rain! A little pup makes braving the element a million times better. :) I’ll keep you in my yoga loop – and I swear you’ll feel the earth crack wide open if and when I buy yoga pants!!

  6. I wonder if you’ve checked out any Yogamazing videos? Many are on Youtube, and the others are elsewhere online. They tend to be pretty accessible (I’m pretty sure there’s one specifically geared to runners, too), and Chaz, the instructor, makes horrendously cheesy jokes that I rather enjoy.

    p.s. Welcome ohm (t. hee).

  7. &
    yew gawtta be friggin kidding! our two most recent cats were/are (as you may already know) named milli and that other “v” name by my son’s now-ex lamebrayinged uh, ex. she left the cats with him! as sheeez a flibbertyjibbert and wanted to up and runnnnaWEIGH with relatively no stirrings attactd. so we did HIM a favor and scooped up da cats. dems da cats you frequently commented on as lounging in the sink, etc.

  8. I love the Milli Vanilli tie-in. So happy you could blame something on the rain! Have fun with the yoga! You might also enjoy pilates, I am sure someone has made a you tube video workout featuring it. I find it feels more like I “worked out” after pilates than after yoga. But it depends what you’re going for :)

    1. Thanks! At first I thought it was way too cheesy, but then I thought, eh, just go for it.

      Pilates is darn hard! I remember I took one class in high school with a friend and it darn well near killed me. Talk about a work out of your core! I’ll have to work up to it :)

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