Monday, July 20, 2009

Adventures in Bikram Yoga

For years, I have been an "anti-yogi" deeming it a "fake workout" and completely boring, however recent events led to a shift in my thinking...
Let me begin by stating that I am a runner. Sometimes, I run 6-7 days a week. In the winter this means running on the treadmill, which although slightly boring still brings the "runner's high" after. Occasionally, I will dabble in a kick-boxing class or perhaps some step aerobics when a change of piece is needed.

Not wanting to knock something before trying it, I attended several Yoga classes offered at L.A. Fitness. I was....BORED. Really bored. And, I certainly was not tired or sweating in the slightest when I left. In fact, I believe I went and ran on the treadmill after I was finished. Because of this, I have mocked Yoga workouts, stating, "Yoga is boring. It is not even a real workout."

Now, I have to eat my words. Last week, I purchased a 10 classes (for $20.00) at the Bikram Yoga Studio of India in Fremont hoping it would help the knee/leg that was injured while walking Linus the Beagle (see earlier blog). Never in my life, have I struggled so much through a class. Especially a class consisted of stretches and poses where I never moved off of a mat.

* Bikram Yoga is yoga practiced in a room heated to a boiling 105 degrees and the fans are turned off during each of the 26 poses, except for the Savasanga (where you lay down).

Sweating from the moment I began the first pose, up until the very end of the 90 minute (yup, you read that right-90 minutes) class, I kept trying to sneak water or wipe my face with my towel, only to have the teacher remind me to wait until in between poses.

When I left class, I felt as though I had taken a shower... in my shorts and sports bra! Gross. Right? I thought so, but I also felt totally amazing and cleansed! Never before had a Yoga class, or any workout class caused me to feel so wonderful!

Now, I am not saying that I could do this everyday, especially once my new member trial period expires. Bikram Yoga is not cheap (about 130 dollars per month) and I sometimes I find it difficult remembering to drink enough water during the day or drink coffee right before. Both of these things can make one feel dizzy, nauseous, or light-headed.

However, I would like to commit to attending a Bikram class once a week. So far, I have been four days and I just feel "more aligned" and my knee is not quite as sore. So, I will admit... no longer am I against yoga. I have converted.
For those of you living in the Seattle area, here is the Yoga Studio I went to...and there is also one in West Seattle:

1 comment:

  1. Allison! I love your blog! I have done prenatal yoga once a week through both pregnancies and it is wonderful. Not nearly as tough as Bikram but still great while you can't do much else. Kel