|This is definitely not the type of post that I am accustomed to writing, but after neglecting my blog for many weeks now I wanted to start off with something entirely out of the ordinary.
Some random yoga art to make the post more interesting
After years of fighting it, I finally gave yoga an honest go. Of course wouldn't you know, I really enjoy it. I've had many people over the years ask me to try it with them and I've never even considered it. I even dated a yoga instructor once and still wasn't convinced. I thought it was time for a new physical experiment.
A number of friends actually suggested that I try the hot yoga (bikram I believe it's called) as a way to clear my head and gain a little peace with the world. While it didn't really work for that purpose, I did very quickly discover that the endurance, balance, strength, and flexibility training was well worth my time. I really do enjoy being in shape, I just need to be motivated.
I showed up for a 90 minute hot yoga class a few weeks ago. Ten minutes into it, I was positive I was going to throw up, briefly pass out, and definitely not complete the next 80 minutes. Ten minutes after that, I caught my breath and figured if the other 30 people could do it, I could too. I worked it as hard as I could. When the instructor later found out (after class) that it was my first class ever, she was visibly impressed that I was able to perform all of the postures and was pretty surprised I'd started with their hardest class. Since I like to be good at things, that was motivation enough. I've only missed class when traveling and it's been working wonders on my body.
I started 2013 off about 14 pounds lighter than usual thanks to a spectacular Christmas diet. I think the first few yoga classes probably sweat off another pound or two, but I've been steadily increasing my weight since then; my muscles are already coming back in full force. The 90 minute class really does work every muscle group of one's body. As someone who suffers from really bad back and neck pains, I'll be curious to see if it's able to mend those areas a little bit. I can already see my leg muscles toning, can feel all of my abs, and my lower back and shoulders are developing all sorts of new muscles I'm not sure are supposed to be part of the human anatomy - at least not mine.
So overall, I'd like to give hot yoga a glowing endorsement. In hindsight, I do wish I had tried it many years earlier and regret not doing so with people who asked me to join them over the years. But at least now I know it's something to be taken seriously. Admittedly I could do without some of the hippie-verbiage and ridiculous breathing noises that come along with it, but it's a small price to endure for the payoff. Also, I would estimate about an 8 to 1 female to male ratio per class. And of that one male, at least a quarter of them are gay. So that's always an additional point of consideration for people.