Getting fit at 44: trying yoga for the first time

Here’s the thing; I turned 44 last month, and I don’t do any kind of exercise.

I can feel my body starting to fail; stiff and aching joints, lack of strength, back ache… all the usual signs of growing older.

I need to get into the habit of taking better care of my body.

But, I am not a sporty man. Team sports have never been my thing. Well, apart from that time at school when  I performed a perfect rugby tackle on a boy twice my size, but that’s another story.

I’ve dabbled in running in the past, but painfully pounding the pavements was no good for my back. I hate swimming. Football? Forget it.

Before becoming a dad, I used to go to a gym three or four times a week, faithfully blasting music through my headphones while joylessly rowing, stretching, lifting and running myself into the ground. It had been my goal to add some bulk to my weedy frame, but I ended up losing weight.

I used to cycle to the train station as part of my commute, but I got pneumonia; surely a sign that exercise is bad for your health?

But I think I may have found a solution: last night I tried yoga for the first time.

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Image: FreeStockPhotos.biz

Yes, it was a bit intimidating walking into a yoga studio, clutching my brand new yoga mat (thank you, wife), and not knowing what to do, but a few other newbies were there too, and the instructor was very accommodating.

For a full 90 minutes I stretched, posed, balanced, sat, relaxed and followed all the directions. It felt great.

I was expecting to ache all over today, but I don’t. I’ll going back next week…

My only complaint was that Janelle Monáe didn’t show up to sing this:

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