I've decided the hardest thing about bikram, is walking up the steps in the parking garage after class. An activity that normally does nothing to me physically, now makes my legs feel like jell-o and my head throb like it is about to split open and spray rainbow colored brain matter onto the concrete walls. But the climb up the steps also means that I am done for the day. Oh, the joyous pain.
Class three was much less rage inducing than class two. Hooray! After class I treated myself to coconut water, and I felt like a million bucks after sucking it down. Do I taste a tradition?
The hot room itself was pretty boring, but when I got into the (semi-nude) locker room, I realized that I actually knew someone. We got to talking and she revealed that she was on class #99. In a row. Talk about some serious commitment. She doled out words of encouragement about my 30 day challenge. The pep talk did almost as much good for me as the coconut water.
Also during class #3, I tried to find out how many calories I was burning by wearing my calorie counting device. There are several different articles out there about bikram's calorie melting potential. Some say you burn close to 1000, some say you burn very few. I decided to wear my bodybugg to figure it out once and for all.
I rushed home after class to plug in the bodybugg and determine what kind of crazy burn I had just experienced. The blessed thing said that I had only burnt 220 during the 90 minute class. I knew it had to be wrong since I burn close to 300 just sitting on my tail for 90 minutes. Theeeen I did some research. Apparently it is too hot for the bodybugg to get a real calculation. Too hot?? I'm too hot!! Grrrrrrr...
I don't like to do workouts without knowing their exact perks. Why do them if you don't know what the precise benefit is right away, I ask you?
This workout = X cupcakes. It's simple, really. I like to call it instant grati-fat-cation.
So I guess I have to let it go and trust that bikram is a great workout, a great stamina builder, a great confidence builder, a great way to spend 90 minutes a day. Forget the exact numbers and calculations. Breeeeeathe.
Why can't I just do the work out and not learn a freaking lesson? Ohhh yoga.
When you come to your first class, the instructor will tell you a few things. 1) If you get light headed, please feel free to take a knee. 2) Sit out the first posture and watch if you are unsure how to do something. 3) There is only one official water break. If you need water any other time, please only drink between postures. 4) Stay in the room.
The last is the most important. In all of the classes I have taken, I have only witnessed three people leave class, and even then, they always came back into the room to finish. Until class #2.
Class #2 was the craziest, hottest class I've ever been in. To start out, I made the mistake of sitting under some sort of vent pumping in air straight from hell. Or the sun. Either way, I was angry. How could I have been so stupid? I kept berating myself for not paying attention to where I was rolling out my mat.
Deliriously, I wondered if I had put on enough sunscreen because I felt like I might be getting sunburnt.
I eventually realized that I was not the only one suffering from the blistering licks of solar wind. Everyone around me was having a terrible time. I've never seen so many people drinking water, taking a knee or leaving the room.
All around me, bikram veterans were reduced to mere noobs! I wanted to yell at the instructor; don't you see what is going on?? Turn down the heat, dummy! Instead of turning down the heat, she would call out: "hold on guys, there are only _____ more postures". Was that supposed to be encouraging!?! Crack a door, you loon!
At one point, I saw a woman roll up her mat to leave before the class was over, only to stop and prop herself up on the back wall. Instead of continuing on towards the door, she slid down the wall and sat there with her matt between her knees looking as wrung out as I felt.
It was a disaster.
The man who had practiced beside me had also parked next me in the garage. As we walked to our cars after conquering the heat, he told me that he had been going to the studio for seven years. In all his time there, he claimed that was by far the hottest class he had ever been to. I felt like some sort of warrior for making through the class without leaving. I also felt like I wanted a nap, and a bucket of ice.
I later found out why the class had been so unbearable. Apparently, it was not the heat so much as it is the humidity. This particular class was ultra crowded and there was thunderstorm outside, which both contributed to the misery. Lesson learned.
|Getting pumped with Melissa before class #1|
I had not been to a bikram class in over a year and yeeeesh, I was nervous! Nervous that I would not be able to complete the class; nervous that I would remain angry at the heat for the full 90 minutes; nervous that I would be embarrassed in front of the all the amazing yogis around me.
I was also consumed with thoughts of donning the scant workout gear. You see, since the class is so hot, the name of the game is wearing as litttle as possible. Which is totally fine when you look like a waif-ish ballerina, but not so much when you are built like me. The good thing about bikram is that any such feelings of insecurity last for only for the first 5 minutes, or until staying alive takes over as the number one thought.
For this first class, I was lucky to have a friend join me. I can get really squirrely about going into certain situations alone, and getting back into yoga was certainly one of those situations.
During this first class, I had to take a knee a few times. I blame this on getting a little over zealous, and forgetting the way bikram can make you feel. I must remember in future classes that woozy is normal, and you just have to ride it out.
By the end of the class I was glad I had come, but was ready to leave--which is fairly normal for me in regards to almost any physical activity.
There was no day two, because I had no idea that I was going to be doing the 30 day challenge, and in general was not motivated enough to go back. I know. LAME.
Check back for day 3 & 4!
Can I, a 27 year chubster, complete a 30 day bikram yoga challenge? I'm sure gonna try.
|Bikram Yoga: 90 minutes yoga classes that consist of the same series of 26 postures done in a room heated to 105°F with a humidity of 40%. Hotter than Hades.|
Earlier this month, I purchased a groupon good for thirty days of unlimited bikram yoga. After a few days of back to back classes, I'm considering going headlong into a 30 day challenge. I'm starting to think I can do it! And in the same (pranayama) breath, I'm pretty sure I can't.
The idea behind the 30 day challenge is pretty simple. Complete 30 classes in 30 days, and win a life time supply of bragging rights and questions regarding your sanity. If you happen to miss a day, you simply do two classes in one day to make up for it. It's supposed to be transformative of both the mind and body.
Personally, I am doing it because I love a (seemingly) insurmountable quest. I'm very hobbit-ish like that.
I also love a good list, so here is a pro/con list I've complied for this epic journey of sweat.
Pros for doing the 30 day challenge:
-I like having a goal and working towards it.
-It's a killer workout.
-The people in class are actually really cool. Not just dirty hippies who take yoga too seriously.
-I feel super bendy during class.
-After class I float on a yoga cloud all the way back to my car.
-My legs are getting so strong!
-Post work out coconut water. Yum.
-It's 103 degrees. Was that made clear?
-So. Much. Laundry.
-There is sweat EVERYWHERE. The worst is when it gets in my eyes and/or up my nose.
-Every class is 90 minutes. It's quite the time consuming hobby.
-When I say it's 103 degrees, that's just on a good day. Some classes get out of control and have been known to go up to 110.
-I can sometimes smell the studio in my hair. It has been washed, but the smell... it sticks around.
Stick around for what I am sure will be a rather ridiculous and spandex laden adventure.
During vacation in North Carolina, the husband found a few hikes for us to do. The first one was up to a defunct government "fire" watch tower. Lets be honest... it was a moonshine distillery watch tower. You say potato, I say mash liquor.
I swear I'd marry him again tomorrow.
By the time we got to the very top, my legs were shaking like crazy. This thing was HIGH. And lord only knows the last time its stability was checked. No hands was a big deal.
These are the mountains where Last of the Mohicans and The Hunger Games were filmed. I'm nerd enough to enjoy that tidbit.
Another hike we did was to a waterfall called "Skinny dipping falls". Too bad the water was FREEZING. I only dipped my fully clothed legs in.