April 11, 2008 posted by

Yogi Tony

It seems pathetic that I’m more sore after yoga than any other workout. I’ve done yoga, off and on, for more than 20 years but never enough to get good at it. This round I’m coming off as long a break as ever and it’s silly just how bad I am. I mean, it’s great, too. During every session I ask myself why ever don’t do yoga because it feels so good. A also tell myself it’s hard and that I’ll never get any good at it. My main problem is that it’s boring. I’d rather be outside climbing, riding, exploring. But yoga makes those things easier, so I’m pretty committed to getting on a more regular schedule. Day two and I’ve already made progress but have a long long way to go.

It’s not exactly an excuse but I find myself falling out of postures because I’ll laugh. Not at the dvd, but at the recollection of Tony’s test group sessions. Tony loves yoga, does it religiously, and is a good teacher. But he also played football and enjoys competition. He can’t help this from coming through in his style. In the final vidoes we edited him a bit and he also knew to tone it done on camera–still, he can’t help using words like “fight” that you don’t normally associate with yoga. With the test group, however, yogi Tony was more like drill instructor Tony. Some of the original test group yoga sessions were like a skit on SNL.

“Cohen, you miserable piece of @#%! You call that a @#$%*-ing downward dog?!” is one of my favorites but there were plenty of them. I would usually do the original workouts right after they’d film them and we’d make adjustments as necessary. The only adjustments to the yoga routine that I vividly recall is the elimination of stuff that had me laughing most of the way through it.

I once told Tony we should consider a yoga studio aimed at a male audience. Instead of peace and mediation we’d get aggro, berate clients, kick them out of class for performing poorly… like real sports.

Why is this funny? I love ironic behavior, especially in an extreme sense. Some of my favorite coaches were the ones that could balance teaching with crazy behavior, like Bobby Knight and, unfortunately, they’re being weeded out in our politically correct society. I learned a lot playing for people like this. It’s not fun when you’re the one being targeted but you always knew that it wasn’t personal–just your turn. One of my favorite examples is from coach Maz at Mt.SAC. He’d had enough of one player, calls timeout, and runs onto the field screming, “…you’re fat. You’re fat, and you’re slow. You’re fat, you’re slow (a beat), and you’re a disgrace to baseball! Get off the field!” He then follows him to the dugout kicking dirt at him like Billy Martin used to do to umpires before that, too, was declared poor form. I miss that stuff. It gave the games personality. I guess I’m like Paul Newman’s character in Slap Shot when he’s screaming at the ref for calling a penalty, “what are you running here, a goddamned dance floor? This is hockey!”

Anyways, that guy wasn’t really fat. He was a college athlete. I’m not fat either. But that doesn’t stop the screaming in my head as I’m falling out of Warrior III from blaring, “Edwards, you’re fat. You’re fat, and you have no balance. You’re fat, lack balance, and are a disgrace to yoga. Get off the mat!”

pic: the kids in their favorite pose: savasana.


  • You have TOTALLY hit on something there. Dude, there is such a market for this. And not just for guys. Actually one of the things that gets on my nerves in typical yoga classes is all the tooty frooty stuff. And it’s not like I’m not open minded. I actually kinda like eastern philosophies. If I wasn’t a strict adherant to Pastafarianism, I’d be totally some sort of Buddist Hindu mega spaz. But I get so sick of space cadets telling me to find my inner shakira when I’m down dogging two inches away from hippy yogi’s musky ass. Give me drill sargent. I’ll take that, Trebek.

  • After the leg and back workout yesterday, I woke up this morning with my calves feeling like they were hit with a crow bar – they are tight. ABX is getting easier, I hope I will be able to keep up at the end of this program.Almost 1 week down, wohoo!~scott

  • I just finished the Cardio X. I took Steve’s advice and went that route instead of the Kenpo X, although I’m not sure there’s much difference. It was nice to be able to do a cardio workout and feel good the whole way through. After yesterday my hamstrings and butt are pretty sore and my abs and back are sore and “crunchy.” I’m going to be out on the Hippie bike this afternoon and tomorrow so we’ll see how the legs feel after that.Good job everyone.~R

  • lordy, finished week 1 and just got back from a ride. 2nd time this year on the hippy bike and the trail up from the zoo and dry creek both felt like riding up walls; i even dropped a tooth and rode 35×20 (on a 26″). i’m hoping the flatness i felt was due to p90x. either way, back to the grind and week 2 tomorrow. good work to all!marc

  • Hey Steve,I wanted to ask about your April schedule further down on this blog. You list different workouts than in the P90X guide. Should we follow your program or the regular P90X program?I’m still pretty sore today, but I feel pretty good. I rode the FS yesterday and the singlespeed today and my legs are very tired, but alright. We’ll see how they feel in a couple of days when I hit them up again.-Reed

  • So, I’m just going to put this on here so you all know what I’m doing. I’m following Steve’s program for this week, which is different than repeating week 1.The plan is:M – Core SynT – Cardio XW – Legs & BackT – Yoga XF – Shoulders & Arms, ARXI’ll probably do something on Saturday too, but I don’t know what.Have a great week.~R

  • hey allwe’re sticking with the p90x schedule and just finished plyo. chest and back seemed better, so we added a little more weight to perpetuate the suffering. plyo is hard for me but i like it. my it band appears to have calmed down a bit. i wish i wasn’t in the company of geezers (steve!) so i could complain about the old age thing, but even tony horton as a year or 2 on me. damn!good luck all.marc

  • Tony has two years on me so age can’t be an excuse. My combo is for me to accomodate other sports. Of course, there aren’t any other sports right now except moving. Big cross training of moving and cleaning. The new house is going to be epic for exercise. Grandeur Peak is now my backyard. I’ll keep ammending the program as I go and probably use the X Plus workouts in the third block and do more sport’s specific stuff. X Plus is shorter, more hollistic, more intense. But it can’t touch, nor is it meant to, the foundation of the standard X stuff.

  • during this “break-down”/adaptation period, riding’s hard! rode in this morning after plyo and my legs were done. surprisingly my lungs were okay (we pick up about 800 ft in a mile or so right out the door, yes, ouch!). i’m going to stick with the plan and make my focus getting fit and unfat and then being able to do sport better later (maybe not better, but at least do it). suzanne’s going to hawaii during our 4th week; any suggestions on how she can continue during that week without the dvds? marcps a little jealous of the grandeur peak proximity, though we’re only about 3 miles from you.

  • Marc, she can download the DVD to a laptop and/or a newer iPod/iPhone with Video capabilities.It sounds like we are within a few miles from each other. My place is near of 3300 S 2000 E. We all should grab a beer or three together and lament on how sore we are.

  • thanks for the info scott; i thought i could do something like that but i’m never sure how write protected these things are. we are close (17th and 17th). beer sounds good and lament is definitely not in short supply. we’ll talk.take care and have fun.marc

  • I probably won’t be able to meet you for a beer, but I can certainly lament.I did the Core Synergistics today and I initially thought I was cheating somehow by not doing Chest and Back. But then it started to work my legs and I wanted to scream so I figured that I was just getting it in a different way. Either way it’s a good workout and I’m sure I’m getting fitter. My legs haven’t felt like this since I was serious about racing and doing intervals. Ouch.~R

  • reedwe can fed-ex you a beer and you can phone in the lament. we just had 3 perfect days here in slc: dry trails, beautiful weather and today it ends again for a day or two with snow and rain. looking at the pics on your blog made me miss california a little. i’m going in for arms and shoulders and arx now, which is a fine way to start a potentially dreary day…81 to go.have fun.marc

  • i’m totally down for a beer. i could use one. still kinda busy but it’s starting to wind down. how about thurs night?

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