The Chair

For a few weeks now I have been simmering in discomfort.  Not a full boil, just a little simmer.  There have been many other things on my mind that kept this discomfort from boiling point, other distractions, until yesterday.  Yesterday I put on my fat jeans and had to do the wiggle to get into them.

Now ladies will know exactly what I mean.  The Fat Jeans are the pair of jeans that are kept in the closet for these moments – the moments when you’re feeling lazy, when you’re bloated, when you don’t want to leave the house, and when you’re… well when you’re FAT.  To have to wiggle, pull and tug and suck in to do the zip on the Fat Jeans is not a good thing.  It needs to change.  Like yesterday.

Since my injury in half-marathon training last year I have struggled to get it together.  The knees creak and complain like they are three times my age.  They have kept me from getting back into the game.  Squats have been a total terror for me.  I fear the pain of bending my knees.

But the Fat Jeans got me into a Bikram Yoga class yesterday.  A studio heated by electic heaters packed wall to mirror with beautiful bodies and hot sweat – just what a girl needs to get her a** in gear… or into her fat jeans.  We started with breathing, stretching with hands locked in Charlies Angels guns to the ceiling until the blood left the fingertips.  And then we entered the chair series.

“Do one thing a day that scares you.”

~the lululemon manifesto 

Every fiber in my body rebelled against it.  The chair.  The squat that changes lives.  Utkatasana.  I closed my eyes and breathed deeply trying to look through my Drishti, the third eye inside your mind.  And looking in there I saw the Fat Jeans, dancing side to side, taunting me.  Slooooow exhale and dammit down I go.  SIT.

“From a standing position, step your feet hip-width apart so you feel grounded and connected to the width of your pelvis. Breathe in deep.  Your feet should be rooted into the ground connecting with the energy of the earth beneath you.  On the exhale, sit down from here into an imaginary chair, keeping your heels on the floor.  You are here for thirty seconds.  Breeeeathe.”

There I sat.  And I sank deeper.  With each exhale I got another inch lower.  Into the deepest squat I think I have ever done.  Space opened up in my mind and in my knees or maybe just in my mind and another half-inch lower.  Pain free.

Isn’t it amazing that doing the one thing that scares you can take you into places you’ve never been before?  Today I am a new woman!  Yes, the Fat Jeans are still tight, but today I am going to the gym.  And tomorrow I will go deeper in that chair.  And on Saturday I am going to run two miles.  And in December I am going to try out the six-mile relay.  And maybe next year the half marathon will look possible again for me.  And maybe before I die I will make it to that medal – the big one – the marathon.