Yoga for Christmas: make a meal of it

Some people get excited about presents, or Love Actually, or going home to see the cat. Some get super excited about twinkly things and things in red and green and white. Some people look forward to seeing old friends, some even look forward to family. Everybody loves a bit of mulled wine. Most of all, though, people love Christmas for the food.

Which brings me neatly to yoga. Last week I was chatting all about how difficult it was to fit a regular practice into the party season. It’s even harder on Christmas Day. Everyone’ll be going mad, the kitchen will be really hot, there’ll be veggies to chop and birds to baste and oh god someone will forget to put the crackers on the table.

The trick with yoga, as with presents and cooking on Christmas Day, is to get it done early. Don’t even think of flicking out your mats having just licked the last of the figgy pudding from your lips. You’ll get as far as that first chaturanga, then in no time at all your up dog will be a throwing up dog. Then it’ll be a lying down dog for the rest of the afternoon.

When you’re feeling too frazzled to concentrate or you’re panicking about the roasties, sit your asana down and breathe. I suggest finding a nice quiet spot. You’ll probably be sweating a little bit already anyway, but it’s good to find a warm spot by the fire. You might have to move the dog, or granddad. (Good to keep him around though if you can – his snoring might inspire powerful ujai breaths.) Start out with a few sun salutes to warm up, then pick through these poses with all the relish of a Christmas dinner. Take five deep breaths in each one. Some can be repeated, if you like. (I always like lots of sprouts.)

Party hats on? Let’s go.

First, prepare your bird. Sorry, we don’t do turkey at Christmas in my house. How about an eagle?

IMG_0472

Come to think of it, this looks a bit like a chicken when it’s legs and wings are all tied up with that bit of elasticated string. Channel that.

Or there’s frog?

Ribbit? Rib it.

Ribbit? Rib it.

Next, get the broccoli out of the fridge:

This is broccoli. Bit leggy, but that's what you get from a veg box.

This is broccoli. Bit leggy, but that’s what you get from a veg box.

And the cauliflower, for the broccicauliflower cheese:

IMG_0481Don’t forget to peel the carrots:

IMG_0479

Or cut little crosses on the sprouts:

IMG_0467

Now warm up the gravy boat:

IMG_0482

Reach for the roast potatoes

Roast potatoes? Sure!

Stay focused

Put the pudding on a plate:

IMG_0469

And a candle on the table:

IMG_0488

Perfect! Toast your success, lie down, and let everything melt away like gravy poured over your beautiful creation. Don’t fall asleep though, because you’ve got to get cooking and people are coming over and everyone’s hungry and OH GAAAD ARGH.

Happy Christmas!

Mmmm gravy.

Mmmm gravy.

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