I’ve been spending a lot of steamy time lately with a certain hot Indian. Not to be too politically correct, but the way my heart races! The fluttering in my stomach! The sweat pouring off my shaking frame!
That Bikram yoga challenge* is, in all seriousness, doing some good. Today was class 38 of 60. I’m down a couple pounds, have newly discovered muscles in my stomach and an empowered state of mind that I can imagine is highly annoying to those who spend time with me outside of the sweat lodge yoga studio.
1. If there is an instructor you truly dislike, it is probably because he/she pushes you to be better. Give in. Suck it up. Keep taking his/her class.
2. Figure out where the scapula is on your body and keep this in mind. I’ve taken plenty of science classes and had no idea . It’s pointed out as an area you should be thinking of about 10,000 times per class. Scapula = shoulder blade. Got it.
3. If you are taking an afternoon class, eat at least 4 hours prior. (Better yet, just take the morning class.) Otherwise, the first Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Janushirasana** — Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee Pose — will result in revisiting your lunch. I haven’t yet figured out the best timing, which means I’m eating less; nothing is worse than vomiting in public.
4. My car smells like yoga. My closet smells like yoga. The workout clothes I wore last week and have since washed twice smell like yoga. It is a particularly distinct combination of sweat, feet and incense. Sounds disgusting, but in a very weird way you begin to love it.
5. Coco water is just about the most refreshingly powerful thing I’ve ever drank. After class, I sip one of these 60 calorie containers and it’s like someone plugged my battery back in. The potassium is high so you don’t cramp and it is all natural.
6. Aside from the physical and flexibility stuff I can do all of a sudden, the mental side of this challenge has been a bit of a roller coaster. There are weeks where I am so fired up. I race in the door, throw my sticker on the 60-day challenge chart and burst into class ready to namaste it like the best of the spandex-clad monkeys. And there has been one week in particular where it took sheer grace to get my completely exhausted frame to class each day, pushing through one sore pose to the next. Thankfully, I didn’t give up.
There are stickers.
And a chart.
And if there is one thing this type A spandex-clad monkey loves, it’s public accountability and a challenge that seems pretty insane. Even if I have nightmares where people randomly shout “LOCK YOUR KNEE!”
yogi in training,
* I almost titled this post, “Namaste that, Bitches!”
** Trying saying that three times fast. Jeez, Bikram. I bet you rock at Scrabble.