This last week I decided I would mix up my work outs. I still ran, I still lifted weights, and I continued to walk to work. However, I added hot yoga or Bikram yoga which is 26 poses in 90 minutes in a room that is 105 degrees. I thought if anything I could sweat away the pounds. I believe if you’re going to make progress, you need to do something different, change up what your body is used to going through. Hot yoga was my idea of mixing it up this week.
I’ll admit hot yoga isn’t my favorite but like I said I thought sweating profusely for 90 minutes would have some benefits. I tried a new studio close to work that offered a new student discount – 10 classes for $20 (fine print indicates you have to use all 10 within 14 days). It is a brand new studio and probably the nicest studio. I’ve done hot yoga in the past and you might think I would love it with as much as I complain about the weather here. But heat doesn’t replace good ol’ fashion sunshine.
After work on Tuesday, I payed my money, changed my clothes and began to observe others. I didn’t want to look like the newbie but I think it was unavoidable. I went into the heated room and laid my mat down…there was still 20 min before class and I thought I can’t spend any more time in here than I have to. I roamed the lobby and looked very carefully at each of the pictures of people who are clearly made of rubber. It was time to go in the room. Most people were laying in corpse pose waiting for class to begin. So I did the same. I thought…maybe this isn’t so bad there was a fan blowing which helped circulate the warm air and the lights were off – my mind wandered from the day at work to the heat of the room and I almost thought I could fall asleep. When the instructor came in, she immediately turned off the fan and turned on the lights. It was shocking and I thought I don’t know if I can make it through the class. I immediately thought I over dressed even though I was only wearing shorts and a tank top.
We started breathing in through our nose and out through our mouth to warm up our bodies – I didn’t need much help, I was completely warm. We moved into the next few poses all the while the instructor sitting in the front telling us to look into our own eyes – don’t pass judgement on others or in other words don’t wander your eyes around the room – focus. Funny, I liked looking into my own eyes as I went into the poses but I found myself passing judgement on myself. I noticed my eyes are different and I decided I do have a ‘good’ side. My body is completely different than what I think it looks like. Don’t worry I didn’t completely beat myself up over it. As we moved into my favorite pose, the arrow – I saw the strongest, most determined woman ever.
We continued several standing poses and then we moved into poses on the ground. My initial thought was phew! I can relax a little by laying on the ground a bit…but this is when I realized the floor was heated. Because you know 105 degree room isn’t warm enough. I began counting minutes…20 minutes, 15 minutes, 10, 5, 3…I was completely beyond hot and I couldn’t wait to get out. We finally finished class and as I was leaving I saw this and it totally made me laugh…I wondered if people actually just left their yoga mat or they couldn’t take the heat…“Lost and Found Mats not claimed after one week will be donated to Goodwill.”
I walked home thinking I feel lighter and feeling great – that I accomplished something new. Even though I didn’t like being in that room, I really did enjoy sweating and I felt some muscles I hadn’t felt in a while. I also realized that a sauna could possibly give me the same benefits. I slept amazing!
At the end of the week, I got on the scale – it didn’t really budge in the direction I was hoping for but that’s ok. I know at the end of the day, I’m making good choices with food and exercise…and I’m now 19 days without alcohol!
My highlight of the week was running my fastest 3 miles ever! It was a good week!
How do you mix it up?