Sunday, April 10, 2016

Yoga Journey 1,000 hours in a hot room

Here is what I wrote after my first hot yoga class, September 6th, 2011: I cried a little bit. I think I should have let myself cry more, but I rolled over onto my back and just let myself breathe for a minute before rejoining the class. Yes, it is that hard.  Day one, my body felt like a sponge full of toxins getting wrung out. Glad to get it out. Let's see what a month does...
This is the chronical of my first week of hot yoga:
Day one - It was hard and scary. Heart pounding, hard to breathe scary.
Day two - I thought I knew what it would be like, but it was still a very new experience. Not as scary, but still very hard and heart pounding. Felt pretty drained afterward.
Day three - Fear of it is gone, but it still requires a lot of effort. I am wondering if this is for me. Wiped out and going to bed early with a headache. My appetite is greatly changed and diminished. I want more veges and more water. Less sweets and meat.
Day four - I talked to the instructor before class. I commented that I didn't have a favorite part yet. It was all like some form of torture. She said that she focuses on how strong she is and tells herself how well she is doing. I did that throughout class and I did feel strong and proud of myself for sticking with it. Still tired early in the evening. I am more aware of my skin and it feels good.
Day 5 - I asked before class about getting any kind of added energy benefit from the practice and was told that everyone is different. I will find what there is in it for myself. I went into class ready to tell myself how strong I was again. I did that a lot, but I also felt as though I was going to spontaneously combust. It was very difficult to stay with it for 90 minutes, but I did. My heart rate was not as uncomfortable and breathing was easier. I was just extremely hot.
Day 6 - Major breakthrough. I found the joy. After the initial breathing exercise and during the first series of asanas (I think that is what they are called - I don't want to say "poses" because I don't think of them like that) the instructor, Justice, said "squeeze your biceps with your ears." That cracked me up and I laughed all through the first series. I cannot even describe the feeling of laughter mixed with the physical practise of this yoga. It was like a magical combination. Instead of my sweat feeling like a gross toxic bath, it felt like a beautiful cooling shower. I felt a love and acceptance for myself. I was able to deepen some of the moves. I felt glowing and beautiful and I was hooked. I felt pleased and happy afterward and not tired like the previous 5 evenings.
Day 7 - I went into class prepared to focus on feeling strong and joyful. I was able to do more than before. Toward the end of class I felt like some new pathways opened up. Like the inside of my body was having a party. All of my cells are bubbly and sparkling inside. A new energy source is revealed inside of me.
Day 8 - For the first time, I felt that this practice - even in the heat and the demands of 90 continuous minutes - can be relaxing. My breathing was easy, my heart rate steady. I feel a kind of heat and energy inside my body now and a cool, clean sensation on my skin. I see how people want to do this every day. I feel like this is one of the best things I have ever done for myself.
I did do 30 classes, one every day in that first 30 days. Since then, I have backed off to about 4 days a week.
About a thousand hours later:
The photo above was taken after class today. I remember this being one of the asanas that I thought impossible when I looked at Bikram's Beginning Yoga book. Now it is one of my favorites. I think of my feet and ankles like a Barbie's feet, moulded and plastic, perfectly capable of holding my whole body on pointe. Now you know my trick. The room is still hot. I still sweat my brains out. But I don't get headaches from it. I recommend hot yoga, even if it scares you at first. You could come to love it like I do.


knitting knut said...

Have had a beginners yoga video on my shelf under the tv for over a year, this might be the inspiration needed to open it!

On another topic, love love love your professional zip around wallet and also love the look of your Kindle cover, any plans to draft and sell an IPad cover blending those same styles?

Thanks for any consideration and I'm going to open that yoga video! Nancy

Cherie Killilea said...

Hey Nancy, Thanks for asking. I do have an iPad case pattern:
I tried to make one just like the kindle cover but the iPad is too heavy for it to work without putting cardboard on the inside like they do in China. So my iPad zip around case is made to work along with the stands that come from China. I hope that helps! I hope you enjoy the yoga too!