We're on Day 8 and I've already learned some things about ability to go with my instincts for what to include in my home practice.
When I was teaching yoga regularly, I created numerous sequences for my classes. Too many to count. And I never doubted my ability to do that. However, for some odd reason, I always balked when thinking about a home practice. I always relied on DVDs or went to classes at studios and my gyms. I think part of it was not wanting to think too hard about it and just flow. The other part, if I'm honest, was that I didn't think I'd find my "inner yogi" and instead I'd either just sit there not knowing what I wanted to do or just copy something I've done before.
What I'm realizing is that I really do have a preference for certain poses depending on the day, what I did before the yoga practice, what time of day it is, and more. For example, on Saturday, I wasn't able to fit in a practice in the morning. The day was coming to a close and I realized I needed to fit in a practice right before bed. I noticed that body didn't want an active, standing practice. I was also feeling tired and didn't want to wake myself up and have a hard time falling asleep. So I did a practice that started with cat/cow, was mainly seated with a few twists and supine poses like pigeon done on the back with a few minutes of sivasana at the end.
On Sunday, I did a 4.5 mile run as part of my preparation for a race. After the run, I felt a bit sore and also felt compelled to stretch myself out. So, my practice was instinctually based on stretching my hamstrings (down dog, wide leg standing forward fold, pyramid), quadraceps (hero pose, half bow and full bow), hip flexors/psoas (runners lunge with back knee down - arms on either side of knee as well as arms inside knee, shoulder under knee to prep for Eka Pada Koundiyanasana II) , hips (warrior II, triangle, pigeon, number 4 pose) and achilles - (down dog with VERY bent knees and runners lunge moving back and forth).
Today, after a walk with my dog Madeline, I did a more active flowing practice with sun salutes, warrior poses (I, II, III), standing poses (lunge, twisting lunge, side angle, triangle, balancing poses (warrior 3, needle, half moon, and a few gentle back bends (mountain with backbend, warrior 1 with arms clasped behind back).
So my lesson here that I hope to share with all of you is that we have to trust our instincts even when our minds are telling us we can't trust ourselves. And, I think doing yoga every day for even just 15 minutes is helping me to build that trust.