Thursday, February 4, 2010

"The Great Escape"

Recently my good friend Katie introduced me to Bikram Yoga.  Yoga has never really been a workout I typically do, but I thought I would give it a try after she showed me some of the poses; little did I know what I was about to get myself into.

I have never liked steam rooms.   Sitting wearing nothing but a towel in a small-claustrophobic-type room with air so thick that it is hard to catch your breath has always scared me, and usually I only last for a few minutes, so I knew this was going to be interesting....

Dandayamana-Dhanurasana-  Standing Bow Pulling Pose

As I walked up the stairs to the second floor of this studio building, I signed in, grabbed a yoga mat and two towels, quickly changed and filled my “SIGG eco-friendly” water bottle (since that is the “yoga” thing to do) with ice cold filtered tap-water and walked towards the foggy double-glass doors.   The second I opened the door and stepped inside, I was instantly engulfed by a heat bubble- the exact same kind of heat wave a steam room has.

As I laid down on my mat waiting for class to start, I could feel the heat already sinking in- I was starting to perspire and felt my heart starting to beat faster.   Lights came on and class began.   For the next 90 minutes, I was sweating profusely, twisting and turning my body in all different directions like a pretzel you get at a sporting event.   The 105 degree heat felt like 115 at times, and the instructor insisted on not stepping out of the room until the very end.   In a room filled of 30+ people, I do the 26 different yoga posses two times through.

After my last pose of breathing out the stale air in my lungs and the instructor turns the lights down again for dead body pose, I realized I never had a single thought flow through my mind the entire time.   Instead, all I did was listen to my instructor talk as I went through the motions.   I had finally found an escape- a way I can relax, unwind, and do something for me, without any distractions.

Ustrasana-  Camel Pose

Like yoga- you need to have your body and mind in sync, your life will be off balance if you don’t.   If you’re off thinking elsewhere, you miss out on the true benefits of yoga.   Nowadays it is hard to find a way to escape from our noisy streets and the noise that clouds our minds.   Yet in Bikram class I have found silence. With this new workout, I believe I have found my equilibrium.   With it I find balance and the motivation that makes me want to get better every time I do it.   This new workout may be the equilibrium of my scale, and something that motivates me to want to get better at every time.

“For me, yoga is not just a workout - it's about working on yourself. ~Mary Glover”

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