I’m not really a fan of exercise. I hate that stiff feeling you get the next morning after a tough workout. I cringe just thinking about that feeling. However, it’s become more apparent that I should exercise for my health. Not so much for my girlish figure because, lets face it, I haven’t seen it since my junior year of high school. Luckily, I have actually found a form of exercise that I like: Hot Yoga.
I’ve always been intrigued by yoga but it seemed illusively complicated. I like the idea that it is a total body workout, inside and out. I also like that it always strives to align the spine and keep the body in balance. This goes hand-in-hand with my love for chiropractic health care. However, the “poses” always seemed WAY too hard to master. I mean, seriously, how am I supposed to get my out-of-shape body to bend and contort like I see in pictures? Besides, they all have funny names.
My friend Hannah had been raving about “hot” yoga and took me along for a class. I loved it! I felt so good afterwards. Granted, I was hating it about half-way through my 1st class but the feeling afterward was amazing enough to make me want to go back.
So, what is “hot” yoga? Well, it’s regular yoga but in a room that is close to 100 degrees and 50% humidity (WAIT! – keep reading). Basically, you sweat. A lot. (stick with me just a bit longer) The flip side is that your muscles warm up so much faster and that helps to eliminate that stiff feeling. Granted, I am sometimes sore after a hard class but not so stiff that I don’t want to get out of bed the next day. All that sweating is also good detox for your body. Sweating is the body’s natural method for detoxification. The hot room just enhances the environment to help the process.
I found The Hot Yoga House in Rivergate and it’s a perfect fit for me. Classes are only $10 each and everyone is so nice. Plus, the instructors are amazing. They encourage you to push yourself but only to the point that it feels “good.” They remind you that “yoga isn’t supposed to hurt.” The best part is that there is no competition. They don’t want you to focus on how far other people have progressed but to focus just on yourself, your mat, and your practice. This is one place where it really is all about you! Surprisingly, the complicated poses I was worried about really aren’t as bad as I thought. It just took a good teacher to talk me through it. And, you know what? I really don’t even notice the heat anymore. My favorite part, by far, is the cold cloth infused with essential oils that they give you at the end of class. Honestly, this may be the sole reason I continue to go back. But, hey, whatever works!
So, my goal for this year is to exercise (for my health) at least twice a week. I don’t know that I will always make it to “the house” 2 times each week so I’m planning to practice once at home and once in the studio. I fell off the bandwagon pretty hard over the holidays but this Sunday night I’m starting fresh and going to one of my favorite classes of the week. Anybody want to join me?