Pushing yourself

While at yoga tonight I was pondering what exactly it is that motivates me to do this.  The room is heated to 105+ and 90 minutes long, I contort, stretch and twist myself into positions that my body doesn’t seem to want to do.  So… why?  Why pay to have someone lead me in an exercise in pain?  In this case, having my back straightened out is one MAJOR advantage… ok… so there is a physical advantage.

It still hurts.

I had attended a class with a special teacher, (sorry Craig, I can’t for the life of me remember your last name) and the class was an extended version of a normal class.  Craig spent extra time talking through specifics of what you are trying to accomplish in each posture… let me step back, he discussed in detail the mindset you should bring into your practice and a couple of “pre-thoughts”.  I would equate a pre-thought to the same sort of thought process you have before you swing at a golf ball or “pre-swing-thoughts”.  The idea is to have a few thoughts or focus points to focus your mind and body.  At one point in the class, he stated that the more you progress and the better you get at the postures, the harder it will become.  I didn’t think to much about it at the time, but it has stuck with me as I have advanced in my practice and have found that I am pushing myself deeper in each posture and the pain of doing so seems to be increasing, or at least I am getting better at putting it out of my mind.  So I ask once again… why?

I guess when you get down to it, I absolutely love the feeling afterwards.  The endorphins are what make it worth it.  And… I guess I am a bit of a masochist, and I enjoy it.

Why do you push yourself?