Hot room confessions

a snapshot into my Bikram yoga world

Archive for the month “March, 2014”

I do yoga because it makes me feel good.

Sometimes I get asked why I do so much yoga. I say it makes me feel good: my mind feels better, my insides feel better, my outside feels better, I feel better about the way I look,  really my whole self is better. So I take 90 uninterrupted  minutes a day for myself. 90 minutes without emails, text messages,  students asking me for something, friends, family, even hubby. It’s 90 minutes for ME in front of a mirror working my booty off- I love it!

I like to think that investing 1.5-2 hours on my mind and body a day is going to make me a better person which in turn will help me to make a bigger difference in life. I can better serve my friends, family, even students!

I was first interested in working out when I was a sophomore in high school. My mom and I joined a gym. I pretty much had some type of  gym to work out in from then till now. I can make myself go to the gym. I can jog on the treadmill or lift weights (I really REALLY don’t like lifting weights…. so boring for me!). Going to the gym doesn’t make my mind feel better- I pretty much dislike being there every minute. I go because I should and it makes me feel better about the way my body looks afterwards. But that’s all it really did for me.

My first yoga class ever was probably in college (maybe 2003?). I always liked yoga. But most normal yoga classes didn’t feel like a workout so I’d still do some cardio before or after class.

October 2006 marked my first Bikram yoga class. I liked it from the start. I loved it within the first month. The first 4 or 5 years was sporadic for me. The studio was across town and even when I was being consistent it was two maybe three times a week. I saw how it helped my mind and body. I didn’t have to make myself go. I WANTED to go. I still took a year off here and there. The year I was engaged I went consistently (gotta de-stress and fit into my dress).

We got married and I stopped making the trek across town to yoga and settled for forcing myself to the gym. When a different studio opened a location about a mile from my house I was excited and nervous to try a different studio. Would it be the same? Am I selling out not going to my original studio? A friend and I went and I LOVED it! The studio was spacious, had great carpet, and a humidifier! The first month I went about three times a week. That seemed like all I could possibly fit into my schedule.  I then started a 60 day challenge (turned into 94 days).  In that challenge I realized that I CAN fit yoga into my daily schedule. Starting January 2012 I’ve been going 5-6 times a week. And I LOVE it! My mind is better: I’m more calm and positive, I don’t spend time hating the way I look, and I’m better equipped to handle uncomfortable and stressful situations. My body it better: I have more toned muscles, my skin doesn’t need lotion and glows after class, I’m better at handling hot weather (I live in Texas).

Yesterday at school someone heard about my yoga practice and was a little shocked I spend so much time doing yoga. She doesn’t understand how it benefits me. She doesn’t understand that it’s a sport just like cycling or running (only I get more out of yoga than I would running or cycling….). I told her to try it. I told her about the donation class and told her to try. I know it’s not for everyone, but it’s DEFINITELY for me. Maybe she’ll see why I spend 10 hours a week in the hot room!

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Stressing about not getting my yoga in!

 

I find it stressful when I can’t get to yoga class. I try to go to Bikram 6 times a week. I already have 2 days yoga doesn’t fit into this week.  I’ve spent time stressing about how to cram another class into the week. Not Zen of me whatsoever! It’s like my day just isn’t complete without a yoga class.

One night I couldn’t make it (busy night full of other obligations). When I got home I was crabby. When my hubby figured out I was busy NOT doing yoga, he was no longer confused by my grumpiness. Now, should I rely on yoga to have a calm and peaceful mind? NO. But it sure is nice that it does!!!!

Maybe I should look into a home routine or practice some mediation to work on my brain when I can make it into the hot room.

 

If you’re not breathing you’re not doing yoga

Maybe I had just been congested for so long, but a couple weeks ago I was reminded of how amazing a big deep breath is when you’re working hard in class. Next time you’re in a challenging class and you’re thinking about sitting out a posture, take one deep breath. The kind that starts at the bottom of your lungs and ends at the very top. You’ll feel better- more calm and more balanced.

It’s amazing how powerful your breath is in class. I mean, the teachers tell you that and the first part of class (that sometimes feels like forever) is all about breathing. It’s true! It’s also true about breathing out your mouth sets off your body into a panic mode. If you have to breath out your mouth, take a knee and calm your breath down.

But in postures you have to breath! Whether it’s deep, long, full breaths or small 80/20 breaths. You can tell in class when everyone’s holding their breath. After the posture you hear a big breath as everyone comes out of the posture (hello full locust pose).

If you don’t know what to get a Bikram yogi for their birthday….

“If you don’t know what to get a Bikram yogi for their birthday DON’T get them lotion.” – my teacher from class yesterday

I don’t wear lotion anymore. My skin isn’t as dry as it was before. Even if I need some I don’t use it- way too slippery in class!

My friend D came to yoga on my birthday (she hates it but loves me!). She recently lost weight and noticed she can grab her elbows in wind removing pose. She was pumped to do it in class! But after putting on her yoga shorts…. She out lotion on her legs. I told her not to, but she insisted.

It comes to wind removing time in class and guess what? She can’t keep ahold of her legs all lotioned up.

Some teachers told me that they use coconut oil when they need lotion. Evidently it’s less slippery in class. I’ve found that some lotions are less slippery than others. I’ve had luck with minimal slime when I use origins ginger soufflé lotion.

What do you use when you’re feeling scaly?

Health Challenge 2014: Weeks 6-8

Soooooooo there’s nothing new about my challenge. Yes, I’ve been going 6 times a week. That’s not an issue for me, in fact I’ve only had to do two doubles in the challenge (that’s nothing!). Backward bending is a whole other story. Since the wedding weekend my lower back’s  been kind of messed up. It’s tight and I can’t seem to stretch it out! The rehearsal dinner night I was walking around and felt a pinch in my back where the tightness seems to be. I’m guessing wearing heels messed with my lower back (I’m OLD!). I’ve been going easy on my backbending since it seems to fire up my lower back some. I have been trying to stretch out my lower back by working on my hips and forward bending. Forward bending- with my piriformis issues? Well my derriere is doing pretty freaking awesome!  You know, not 100%, but pretty darn close!

My caboose is doing so much better I’M GOING TO ADVANCED CLASS TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I’m SO excited! I haven’t been since mid October. I just need to remember to take it easy so I don’t mess up my butt again!

My hubby’s challenge has been going so well! I’m so proud of him. He brushes it off when I mention it, but I am so proud. He’s  been fitting yoga into his life in ways he never bothered before. He’s got a super crazy work schedule but he really tries (and does) get his three classes in a week. He’s now been three days in a row a couple of times. You have to understand that he used to REFUSE to go to classes two days in a row (I know, he’s a weirdo- you get so much more flexi with everyday class). He’s SO CLOSE to touching the floor in toe stand. I can’t help but to see how close he is in class. When I’m  bent over touching the floor it’s easy to look over and see how close he is.

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I swear I remember teachers sometimes telling students to fall forward into their hands if they’re close. Haven’t heard it in forever. I’m guessing that’s not something my teachers are doing anymore? I think he should fall forward just once in the challenge.

Another plus in spending the whole afternoon in yoga today  is that it’s supposed to be nasty outside. A wet cold front is blowing through. The perfect weather for being in the hot room all day. It’s been beautiful lately and it makes me want to be outside. When the weather is amazing it makes me feel guilty spending all my free time in a heated, frosted windowed studio instead of appreciating the outdoors. There’s just not enough hours in the day for yoga and outdoors!

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