my haaawt yoga journey

It started on a whim. I was debating my yoga practise again.  After a long hiatus; a needed mental, spiritual and physical breath in time, if you will, I knew I had to get back.  So, one Saturday morning, out for the day with my cousin,  we were talking about getting back to the gym and back into shape, a different shape, a shape we remembered from our youth if we could. Our bodies were too eagerly bowing to the god of gravity and neither of us were ready to let go so easily, despite the challenges we both faced.  I asked her, since we were so close, to pop in to this Bikram Yoga studio I had been hearing so much about, just to see what’s up. I had poo poo’d hot yoga for years.  I dislike sweating, too much of it and I get all hivey.  And yet, I was intrigued with the trend.

The wonderful woman that greeted us at the Bikram Studio was the current owner.  She not only convinced me, and my few physical glitches, that hot yoga was THE best solution (using all form of understandable biology and a grandiose scope of enthusiasm to do so).   But,  what sold me was that she convinced my cousin, who is a walking plethora of issues from menopause to bursitis and all the aches and pains from shoulder to sole in between, to try it also.  She was good I tell you!

One month trial.  Forms signed, visa’s through and we were off on a new yoga adventure.

The first class was called Yang & Yin.  60 minutes of Yang and 15 minutes of slower Yin.  The studio is a balmy 36C and 34C humidity.  Seemed easy enough.

I opened the door to the room and was immediately smacked in the face with a chamber of substantial, motionless heat.  Almost akin to the consistency of a room sized bowl of warm marshmallow bread spread.  Hard to walk through, hard to breathe through.  GA!  I doubted I was going to make it, or, want to come back for that matter BUT the dutch in me spent forty bucks for this and I wasn’t going to put that hard earned cash to waste.

Class was ruthless! Kind of. {sheepish}  I sweated buckets, cursed a mean streak under my breath and tried to remember how to move certain joints and muscles into perverted twisted versions of a pretzel and then stay there for DAYS, I tell you, DAAAAYS!

Left the studio in yoga pants that felt like I had swam a marathon in and drove, sitting forward, with all windows open, so a breeze could cool my heat stroked skin.

When I got home, took a shower and drank my body weight x 900 in gallons of cold water, I actually felt absolutely, undeniably, exhilarated.

I went back.

Hooked by class three.

I tried all the classes I could.  Ones I knew I could handle anyway.  A few are a bit out of my practise range but I’ll get there.  Fell in love with Sundays Candlelight Yin stretchy yummy yoga class. I also enjoy the lunch time classes and the Yang & Yin is now a regular.   I am used to the heat, but then, we are living in a current rare summer heat wave so really it’s just like being outside for an hour.

8 weeks later.

I feel good.  But my body hasn’t changed like I thought it would.  It’s an odd feeling actually.   Let me try to explain.  After 8 weeks, 3+ classes per week, sweating oceans of liquids from every pore and I still have obvious, uncomfortable back fat and my thighs now touch and I’m a little confused and frustrated.  BUT!  I feel like I have more room in my ether.  I feel lighter in my heaviness, if that makes any sense. There is a space in my personal bubble that wasn’t there before. I move easier, like swimming in clear water instead of sludging along in thick mud trying to lift heavy skin and muscle with every step.

Even though I feel the same size in my regular clothes, I know my body is changing.  Example, my yoga tops, when I first got them out of the “drawer that never opened” they looked foreign.  I tried them all on, each one worse than the other, like trying to squeeze a human size mushy round blob into a straw.   Now, I slide into my tanks easier and they don’t leave indents on my skin.  My cells remember.  Those little lazy stinkers.  They are sluggish and stirring, but they remember.  I know I’ll get there.

My personal lesson in all this? I have to find the patience it needs to get back after my hiatus.  Three years of sadness is like 20 to the body and 20 years of no exercise? Well…    If I don’t lose the back fat and the little Buddha belly I have picked up somewhere along the way, if my arms wobble when I wave and my butt takes a bit of a wiggle to get into stretchy jeans, then so be it.   As long as I can swim my way through the muddy depth to a clearer, cleaner, healthier space then there is nothing more I could ever need. I deserve the respect I give my body.   So I will continue my haaaawt yoga journey with eagerness, some trepidation, lots of sweat and with, I hope, a good deal of that elusive patience.

** Note – I have paid, in advance, for a full year of hot yoga. Wish me luck.

 

 

 

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