(Guest Post)The Best Laid Plans…

Hey everyone, I’m back from Winthrop and attempting to get on top of the laundry, a job that is never really done. A big thank you goes out to Kara tonight for helping me walk away from my blogging responsibility. I would tell y’all a nice story about how Kara and I met, but she already did that for me. Thanks Kara!

Hey everyone!  I’m Kara and I will be your guest blogger today.  I met Leila back when we were both engaged and she introduced me to the Spokane Knotties.  I got married over a year after Leila, and she was huge in helping with with wedding planning and advice throughout the craziness.  She was even one of the Knotties who threw me a bachelorette party!

Oh… mah… gawd… I love Twigs… and my fellow Knotties!
Hailey, Tanica, Emily, Leila and myself

I run a tiny (workin’ on gettin’ bigger!) Lupus blog called Sisyphean Effort.  While my blog is geared towards fellow lupies, my main message is universal.  Sisyphus was that poor bastard doomed to roll a boulder uphill for eternity.  When he would get close to the top, the boulder would inevitably roll back down.  Of course, Sisyphus was a king and he was being punished and I’m no royalty… if you care to learn more, feel free to wiki it.
My point, anyway, is that it is very often we can feel like we’re making progress only to encounter setback.  My blog and my way of life is about accepting that, enjoying the ride, and continuing to try regardless of that big-ass boulder ending up on top of you.  We all feel like this, time to time, regardless if you have an autoimmune disorder or are a kick-ass marathoner (like Leila).

I was searching for a cartoon, seriously….
On a side note, you should all see 127 Hours.  It’s also funny that my GIS turned up a picture of James Franco.  More later…
My blog post is titled “The Best Laid Plans”.  And that would be because I intended to write a post on one of my new toys, a medium-strength resistance band I intended to add to my pool workout today:  Aquatic therapy is a very arthritis (and, therefore lupus)- friendly workout.  It’s also a great way to switch up your workout if you find yourself in a rut.
However, my brother-in-law was here visiting and I loaned him my pool key.  Then, I realized he would need a house key as well.  I put both on the pool keyring, leaving me with separate rings for my car/work and my home/pool.  After I got the ring back I never re-combined them.  And now it’s missing… Gol-darn boulder…
So, my new plan was yoga, which is nice since Leila hasn’t quite fallen in love yet.  Long ago, I would do P90X Yoga- a part of the Beach Body Workout.  Two car accidents (and two damn big boulders) later, I’ve lost the stamina to complete much of P90X.  In addition, my arthritis makes it difficult to do a few of the poses.  Then, I discovered these little beauties:

Three Minute Eggs- Because your body’s not square!
Rounded yoga blocks have helped tremendously with my form and fixes my issues with my hands in poses such as downward facing dog….

…and triangle pose…

…and corpse pose (one of my personal favorites)…

As Tony Horton says, he’s not in great shape because he can do a bunch of push-ups… it’s because he does yoga.  Yoga tones and encourages core strength.  I enjoy it because it slowly strengthens around my joints to support them.  I find that if I do yoga after bicycling or the elliptical my chances of a flare (arthritis acting up) is much less.  Yoga is great for all levels of flexibility, ability, and strength, not to mention great for clearing your mind.
To come back to James Franco… this is my favorite yoga DVD.
This is the star of the series (best shot I could find):

I’m really digressing… on my first guest post and everything!
My point is that yoga is hard to get into… especially if you’re a runner and you like “feeling it” immediately. In high school I was a hardcore tennis player and weightlifter.  As my lupus progressed, I yearned for ways to nurture my love of exercise. I actually fell in love with yoga with the P90X video– it was fast-paced and fun.  Others enjoy group experiences… that would freak me out as a beginner, but my goal is to be up for some hot yoga by winter!  Some studios offer brief individual sessions to offer personal tips, point out weak areas, and correct minor form flaws.  And let me say- yoga does NOT have to be super spiritual (or as I call it… hippie-dippie).  Find something you’re comfortable with and when you find something you like… STICK TO IT! I once went to a Piloga (Pilates and Yoga) class that nearly turned me off from both forms of exercise forever.  I left the class early.  Experiment, and STICK TO IT! Just like I’m sticking to my James Franco look-alike.

Now… what is stopping you from getting stronger, more flexible, and possibly- a more centered person?  I’m great at pep-talks if you need one!

**BTW, the blond beauty doing the poses is NOT me.  In the very first picture, I’m on the far right.