curmudgeons

Today was one of those days. I think we all have them. Sometime after the morning I started feeling pretty aggravated, and as the day wore on, my state of irritation only got progressively worse. I usually tend to stay more positive. Anything less than cheerful feels uncomfortable and unnatural. I couldn’t tell you why exactly, but today was different. Nothing seemed to really shake my mood.

Then I remembered some random advice I got from someone the other day. His words stuck with me: “don’t let the curmudgeons take away your shine.” I’m pretty sure he meant it as a joke, because the next thing he said was “#jibberish”. Yes, the hashtag was included. I honestly didn’t even realize curmudgeon is an actual word until about 2 minutes ago, when I googled it out of curiosity. In case you’re wondering, google’s definition is “a bad-tempered or surly person“.

Because curmudgeon sounded like a funny, made-up word to me, I created my own meaning. My personal definition of curmudgeon is jibberish for anything annoying that I don’t want to deal with.

I guess you could say my day was pretty curmudgeony then. Curmudgeons are everywhere, we encounter them all the time. They show up in differing forms, and they are here to stay. In my experience, as soon as I make peace with one curmudgeon, another is bound to appear.

For me, this captures a key part of what yoga is all about – shining through despite the curmudgeons. Allowing the curmudgeons to do their thing, they’re all just part of the process. Whatever that means for you.

age buster with a boost of fat burner

To celebrate Earth Day, at work my team and I decided to run by Robex for smoothies and (free!) wheatgrass-shots. One coworker, nameless to protect the innocent, put in an order for the “age buster with a boost of fat burner” smoothie. You try keeping a straight face while ordering that one.

Naturally, the rest of the afternoon was filled with us cracking jokes about how we could just see the years melting away with every sip of that magic green concoction.

The interesting name choice got me wondering:

  • What was it about that smoothie that made the oh so creative smoothie-namers decide that particular mix of ingredients was age-bustin’ worthy. That’s a pretty tall order if you ask me.
  • How many people order it because they think it will make them appear more youthful?
  • And how do Robex employees not laugh every time someone does order it?

And now you can see why I need to do yoga – with all these thoughts constantly flying through my mind, getting me to ground down and come back to the present isn’t exactly a piece of cake.

My internal rant circled back to yoga, of course. Because I’m obsessed with yoga, I tend to find parallels between “real life” and “yoga life” all the time, usually without looking for them. Thinking about age-bustin, suddenly the question popped into my head: I wonder if there’s a yoga pose for that?

Now, I’m pretty sure the entire practice of yoga is an age buster with a boost of fat burner. To me, one of the most obvious poses that simultaneously busts age and burns fat is headstand, or Salambra Sirsasana.

Bustin’ age:

This could just be a rumor passed down by yogis long before me, but somewhere I heard that going upside down in an inversion for 7 min/day reverses the aging process. I have no idea if there’s scientific proof to back that up. What I do know is that going upside down reverses the effects of gravity in the body, flushing the brain with new, fresh blood, helping to clear the mind and calm the nerves. This is why taking a headstand for a couple of minutes can do wonders to shift perspective and neuromuscular awareness. For me, sometimes it even sparks creativity.

Burnin’ fat:

When done with awareness around alignment, headstand appears pretty effortless. It simply involves stacking your joints (shoulders, hips, knees) directly over one another while upside down. You have to use your core to do this – hence the fat burning potential. Working your entire core (including your legs) ensures that very little to no pressure is placed on your neck. Just like your legs and core are engaged while standing in mountain pose, you want to aim for the same level of grounding up through your legs in headstand, to ensure that your head and neck feel light. Someone once described it to me this way: even though the crown of your head is connected to the ground, it feels kind of like your head is floating.

Now I’m itching to go upside down for my daily fix of “age buster with a boost of fat burner”. Here are some tips (with pictures!) on how to get into headstand.

me beach headstand 1