Hot room confessions

a snapshot into my Bikram yoga world

Archive for the month “January, 2014”

Health Challenge 2014: Weeks 2 and 3

So backbending is…. just that with me these days. I’m doing them. Some days I feel like I’m making changes in my spine, other days I don’t feel like it’s making a difference. My lower back was feeling crazy a couple weeks ago but that’s gone now. Lately I’ve been feeling tightness in my shoulders, esp. the fronts of my shoulders. I have no idea what that means!

Although I’m not sure about the progress of my backbends, I CAN feel other postures shifting around. This may be due to backbending? Or maybe I’m telling myself this just to make me feel better about all this backward bending I’m doing. Here are the postures I can feel changes in (they’re probably just feeling different, I doubt there’s any real physical difference in the postures):

  • Standing bow: Thank GOD! I can feel more twisting in my mid spine. This posture has made me it’s bitch for forever!
  • Cobra: all of a sudden I feel like I’m looking back more (neck flexibility maybe?)
  • Floor bow: it just feels like I’m getting into this one more….
  • Spine twist: ohhh yeah I can feel twisting between my shoulder blades these days and it feels AMAZING!!!!! Why can’t we have two sets of this???

So I find myself motivated to backward bend for all these other reasons when I don’t feel like they’re helping my backbending in class. Actually my back feels tighter (esp. the first backward bend in half moon). I’ve thought about moving my backbending to before class to loosen up before class. Haven’t tried it yet…

Going to six classes a week has been no biggie. In fact I’ve gone 7 days a week for weeks one and two. I’ll be in store for a double next week since I’ll be out of town next weekend. It’s been a while since I’ve done two beginner classes in a row. It’ll be nice!

Hubby update: he’s seeing more leg strength in the awkward series! He’s also been able to get his legs all the way on the floor in the final stretching (hello hamstring flexibility!). He has been having some back pain when backward bending in class. It seems weird, like it’s possibly stemming from him doing something else unevenly. Since it’s not disrupting anything outside yoga backward bends he’s not too concerned about it. 

The weather here in Texas has been kind of crazy- below freezing one day and 48 hours later it’s in the 80’s! It’s been nice practicing in a constant temperature setting. I’ve really been looking forward to the heat!

If you’re interested in week one, here ya go!

Birthday Yoga

It’s my birthday! Time to turn another year younger by going to yoga on my birthday!!!!! That makes me 29 yet again folks, with three birthday yogas in the mix (that makes me 32 if you’re doing the math).

I’ve got D and my hubby coming with me to yoga this afternoon. Can’t beat that!

Photo: HAPPY HAPPY DAY!!

I woke up with this on my facebook page. Thanks D!

Health Challenge 2014: Week 1

So my hubby and I are one week into our health challenge of 2014. So far so good!

  • This year I’m going to 6 classes a week. The past two challenge seasons I’ve done a class a day. I did end up taking class everyday… which is everyday really since 12/27. BUT, it’s nice to know I CAN take a day off a week.
  • Backbending homework has  been…. meh. I’ve done it everyday but it hasn’t been something I look forward to. I can’t tell a difference yet. I did take a before picture. I’m feeling discouraged about the whole thing. You know, questioning if I’m actually going to make a real improvement. Really it’s my mid back and my arms! Both are so resistant! Arg!

All this backbending has made my lower-lower back ache! That back/top of my pelvis bone area has been a little irritated. Talked to some teachers and evidently that’s to be expected. The last thing I need is to hurt myself… again! 

Tuesday is my birthday. So I did pamper myself yesterday and got a massage at my favorite spa. It’s called Zen Well and does Thai massage, reflexology, and chair massage.  I’ve had all three services. I feel like I’m supposed to love the Thai massage, but really it’s just OK. I feel like it’s a lot of what I already do in yoga. Using your body to twist and stretch. It is different in that the masseuse is moving your limp body. Kinda cool if you’ve never done it. The BEST is the chair massage. The tightest part of my body is my upper back and shoulders, so sitting in those chairs at an angle and getting a massage is the BEST! I also love not getting rubbed down with oils (oils and lotion = slimy yoga). The Thai massage is better for lower back so I did get more of a Thai massage yesterday and by lower back feels fabulous today!

My hubby’s challenge is going great! He’s really been going three times a week for a few weeks since we’re coming from Christmas break. He’s been able to sit out less in class and also stretch further. I’m glad to see that having a more regular practice is allowing him to make progress his usual less frequent practice has made difficult. Besides, I love praticing with my hubby and I get to more often right now! I like to screw around with him as we stretch our arms out during full locust pose. He hates it! Haha.

It’s challenge season!!!

Bikram-Yoga-Health-Challenge

So I said I was over doing challenges… a couple times already. I have the frequency in my practice and I don’t need to complete 60 classes in 60 days again. The first 60/60 was eye opening for me and it DID up the frequency of my practice because of the challenge.  I learned how to combine my life with my yoga. I didn’t do just 60/60, I ended up with 94/94. In 2013, it was 100 in 99 days. So as you can see, I overdo things…. hence the ending of challenges for me.

BUT the challenge this year is different! It’s not a 30/30 or a 60/60. It’s whatever health goals you have! You can take different health measurements (beginning, middle, end). Things like weight, resting heart rate, hamstring flexibility with a sit and reach box. You can make yoga frequency goals (times per week, times per the 60 days, whatever!). You can make posture goals (take pics before and after if you want). EVEN MY HUBBY is doing the challenge with me!!!! Yay!!!!!!!

Here are my goals:

  • Go to 6 classes a week. I’m hoping a day off a week will help reduce the injuries I’ve gotten in the past taking a bazillion classes in a row. Besides I go typically 5-6x a week. Not a huge stretch. Although there will be a couple weeks that I’ll have to do doubles. Since I’m not currently taking advanced class (butt injury), they will be beginner classes. Haven’t done two beginners in a row in a while!
  • Complete a backbending routine everyday (My butt is still bothering me. Since forward bends are difficult for me, I’m going to focus on backward bending!). After talking to a teacher about wanting to work on my backbends she suggested wall walking. Start with 5 backbends for a week then 10 for a week, 15, and so on. I’m not so sure about upping it so much each week…. but we’ll see how it goes! I’ve done 5 the past two days!
  • I want to take before and after pictures of my backbend…. although I’m a little embarrassed to get my hubby to take the picture. I guess I shouldn’t be. Haven’t you ever been curious to see what you look like in postures?
  • I’ve thought about trying out a couple different types of yoga along the way. I have a friend that used to do ashtanga. I’m trying to get her to go with me to a lead ashtanga class sometime.

My hubby has committed to taking 3 classes a week (he’s usually 1-2x a week). He wants to focus on hamstring flexibility and dropping the holiday weight. I’m just so excited to go through this with him! I think he’ll see a real change in his practice.

Too good is no good.

I’ve heard this a couple times in the past few weeks. You hear the dialog and you make the corrections that are imbedded. But at some point I guess you don’t need those corrections. Different teachers on different days have told me this. With my butt injuries I guess I’ve been focusing too deeply on alignment and following the dialog.

My butt has been improving slowly. Squeezing my rear, flexing the fronts of my thighs and lower abs, using my abs and lifting my ribs as far up as possible before forward bending. Doing all this is exhausting!  All this flexing of my core has really helped me out in other ways beyond my derriere. I can imagine my core needed some strengthening. I feel stronger in a lot of poses (standing separate leg head to knee pose, all of the back strengthening, etc.). 

I guess it’s important to remeber that the dialog is for most people but that everyone is different and you have to listen to your body! In the end, you’re the master of your practice!

Happy New Year! News of the challenge coming soon!

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