Kids…It’s been 10 hours since we left our beloved children and the moment we pulled out of the driveway the tantrums, sleepless nights, colic, vomit and diapers were forgotten. I miss them so much it hurts…BUT it doesn’t hurt enough to make me reneg on our trip to the Dominican. They are safe and sound with Nanna and I know they will be fine. As for me? Somehow I’ll survive:)
I got a few funny looks in the airport this early morning as I did a quick yoga session. I tried to be inconspicuous but as these things go, it’s hard to blend into the background while doing downard facing dog. Why was I doing asanas at 5 am? Well it comes back to those beloved children again. Shelly said it best the other day with, “God damn kids.” She was refering to the irreversible changes growing a fetus and birthing a baby wreck on your body. In the case of a four and a half hour flight: tight hamstrings, glutes and hips. Tiny seats and a total lack of mobility combined with post-natal shifts mean that without my stretches I’d be awefully uncomfortable by the time we touch down in the Caribbean. Here is my tried and true yoga travel routine. It makes time confined to an airplane seat bearable and even enjoyable.
If you want to see pictures for these poses click here and check out the Yoga Journal pose index.
Sit cross legged in EASY POSE and just breathe. Visualise your plane touching down safely in your beautiful destination. Everyone on the plane smiling and happy to have arrived alive and well. Breath in and out through your nose.
Lean out over your knees and transition to hands and knees on the floor, then slowly push back on an exhale into DOWNWARD FACING DOG. People may be watching but it doesn’t matter because you are going to feel so good for this flight. Gently push one heel down, then the other- breathing and finding more length in each calf. If you can, gently urge your heels to the floor. Enjoy this inversion, with your head below your heart- a chance to reset you mind, getting ready for the shift from everyday to exceptional!
Bring your right leg up behind you and then swing it forward and through. Let your right knee touch down between your hands, your right foot beneath your left arm. Flatten your left foot so the top is settled against the floor. You are now in PIGEON POSE Keep your hips square to the floor and breathe. Hold this for as long as you like, then swing that foot back to DOWNWARD DOG then repeat pigeon on the other side.
End in DOWNWARD DOG and then straighten out into PLANK, our body as straight as a board from your toes to your head. Lower to the floor and then lift your upper torso, leading with your chest into BABY COBRA. Hang out here until the kinks in your lower back work theselves out and then increase your back bend and come into FULL COBRA, resting your hips on the floor and supporting your upper torse with your hands (stacked under your shoulders).
From COBRA melt down into the floor and then push back into DOWNARD DOG. Walk your feet to your hands and just hang out for a while in STANDING FORWARD BEND.
Sit down on the floor and extend your legs out in front of you. With a straight back hinge at the hips and come forward into SEATED FORWARD BEND, a great stretch to relieve lower back pain.
Cross your legs as in EASY POSE and then again, with a straight back, hinge at the hips and come forward. Hold this for as long as you’d like as this particular forward bend is very relaxing. Come up, cross your legs the other way and repeat.
Ten hours into our trip and many more to go until we arrive in the beautiful Dominican Republic. Tiny seats notwithstanding, at least my hips will make it through this flight. Of course, as soon as we get to the resort I’ll be skyping back home to see those wonderful girls. Ain’t technology great?