The comedian George Carlin said he had a rule: He would not eat any food that had a “y” and a “g” in its name.
I have a similar rule as it applies to exercises.
The way Carlin felt about yogurt is the way I feel about yoga.
Before all you yoga practitioners get all downward dog in my face, let me acknowledge the following:
* I know it is a form of exercise and meditation that dates back centuries.
* I know it is supposed to bring about inner peace and mindfulness.
* And I know it is a great way to improve your flexibility and shape your body.
But what no one tells you is how tedious and slow-moving it is!
I guess that is part of the point, but look, I am a Type A personality.
I want a workout that matches my personality, something that is going to rev me up, move at the pace of a New Yorker catching a train and leave me in a puddle of sweat.
Yoga does none of those things for me.
In fact, almost always after I have finished a yoga session, I feel like I have wasted a workout and I come away feeling tired and cranky.
So much for quieting your mind.
My wife and doctor have a theory that my allergic response to yoga is a gigantic signal that I need to be doing more of it.
Oh, so the more I dislike doing something, the more I should do it because it is good for me? My native New Yorker response is something like: I’ve got your inner peace right he-yah!
I have got rebar where my calf muscles should be and have about as much flexibility as the Tin Man in a rainstorm. Why do I want to torture (and embarrass) myself by getting into unnatural poses?
Recently I have seen videos of people doing yoga with goats and yoga with cats. That’s cute and I guess the furry critters are there to keep boredom at bay and to keep your mind off the discomfort of the positions.
There has got to be a better way to get those endorphins released and get that mental high. Oh yeah, I know what it is: cardio and weight training done in a tempo that leaves you breathless.
Some exercise routines I do, in fact, have yoga poses, particularly in the warm-ups.
If my wife is in the room watching, she’ll point and say emphatically: “yoga.” My response is suddenly to have an itchy neck that requires me to scratch it with four fingers moving under my chin in her direction.
I respect that people get something out of yoga, but please don’t push it on me like some potential convert: “Have you accepted Warrior One as your exercise savior?”
I think Carlin, a comic genius who was known for his list of seven words you can’t say on television, was right about yogurt – and by extension, yoga.
It’s a four-letter word.