After waxing (un)poetic on the yogic high road of non-striving it’s only fair to acknowledge: There are times when one looks in the mirror and the image looking back is not one’s usual calm, rose-sniffing self. Call her whatever you’d like - alter ego, inner imp. If (s)he’s winking, I suggest you warm up.
It happens to me when the triathlon bug bites. Scratching the itch involves lots of time, focus and expensive products. I’d like to say it’s effortless: the miles, the hills, the waves. But it’s work, and sometimes (usually) it gets ugly before it feels beautiful.
Sound familiar? You too might occasionally want to take your body out for a spin, 0-60, top down, radio cranked, just to see what s(he’ll) do. It’s like a reward for all the careful prep, the gradual build, the quiet, centered moments. I’m not suggesting you throw safety and common sense to the wind. I’m saying that every now and then, it’s okay to step on the gas when you come to a hill. If your body’s begging for a cruise on the wild side, it’s probably because you’re ready.
If you’re a runner, it’s the day you push through your milage or speed barriers. For cyclists it’s cranking to the top of the tallest hill, then riding back down to do it again. In your yoga practice it may be the days you sweat through a Bikram class, flow through your own energetic sequence or change your view of the world with challenging inversions.
You’re still on the high road, but this one’s got climbs and curves. You’ll be too busy to look in the mirror but next time you do, wink back.