With all the aches and pains I have been having, I've been trying to think of ways to stretch and relax. My mind instantly went to yoga. The last time I practiced yoga was fall of 2010, but it wasn't the normal yoga you think about. It was Bikram. For those of you that might not have heard of Bikram yoga, it is 26 yoga positions done in sequence in a 105 degree room. It takes 90 minutes to complete.
Back when I was practicing, there were several runners in my classes. They were using this style of yoga to build their endurance. Trust me, just laying in a 105 degree room for 90 minutes takes a lot out of you, but getting your body into precise positions in that temperature is a whole different story.
I decided to give it another try. I figured it would be good for my muscles and joints to get good, deep stretches, and that it could help build my endurance for running. Plus, it burns between 600-1000 calories in one session. Bonus.
I remember my first class (Summer 2010), I was so eager and excited... After the first few minutes, I could feel sweat dripping all over my body. I don't sweat a lot when I work out, so this was weird for me. Then, after about 30 minutes, I thought I was going to die. I stopped trying to get in the positions, and I just laid there... and then I started to cry. I felt weak. I left the room soaking wet with my head hanging low, not planning on ever going back. Then the instructor ran up to me and told me I did great for my first time and it was a great accomplishment just to stay in the room the whole 90 minutes. This really struck me, and I decided to give it another try. The very next day, I went back and that time I was able to complete all the positions (not the way the positions are supposed to look, but I tried). I figured out how important the way you breathe effects your mental state, and it got easier and easier each time I went. Then the busy holidays happened, and then I got pregnant, and so I haven't gone back since.
I started getting scared as I drove up to the building. I know how hard my first class was (I was a fool laying on the floor crying). I remember how hard my first run was after pregnancy, and I've never cried running. Pregnancy really does a number on the body, especially if you just lay around eating all day (I'm a little ashamed). So, how bad was this going to be?
I went in with my mind set on the fact that I would be sitting out for some or all of the positions, and that would be okay. However, that was not the case... I totally rocked it. Sure, I looked like a drunk person trying to balance myself, but I attempted every position. After 90 minutes, I walked out of there dripping with sweat and a big smile on my face. It was awesome.