My Bikram Yoga Journey: The Beginning

After spending a month in America where the portion sizes are as jumbo as you think and over indulging I decided I needed to do something big to kick me back into a healthy routine. I don't believe in "diets" or fads, but lifestyle choices. Before this summer I was proudly healthy and fit which I loved. However moving back from university, a long holiday, starting a new job and some other personal events has meant my lifestyle has slipped into a less than ideal condition in terms of working out and eating right. I am always interested in trying new forms of exercise because it is so important to keep excited about working out and not to get bored. In America I tried out yoga for the first time. I absolutely loved it. and vowed that when I got home I would ensure to make it a part of my life. Fast forward a couple of months and now I am doing a 30 day bikram yoga challenge!

Here I am ready to set off for my first ever Bikram Yoga session. I had done my research and throughout the day I tried to drink lots of water. It is important not to down loads of water right before your session so as not to feel bloated when doing exercises on your front. It is also advised not to eat three hours before your session but to have consumed slow releasing food throughout the day. Which I did. Upon arriving at the studio I could feel the heat pouring out of the class room. Eek!

I arrived early and got to lie down and try to adjust to the heat. This was a good opportunity to mentally prepare after a busy day at work and so I would recommend doing the same if you are trying it out for the first time. The session itself was liberating, really hard and totally wonderful. I had the best time discovering that my body could do things I never expected. I struggle with particularly short ham strings and back problems. Yet apparently my spine is wonderfully open because I got my feet high above my head when lying on my stomach. I am predicting the classes to be a journey. My teacher was calming, encouraging and personable which is helpful in such an unknown and extreme experience!
Here I am recovering some electrolytes with mango and peach coconut water (best flavour!)

There were a fair few times throughout the class that I genuinely thought I was going to be sick. At this point I sat on my mat staring at the door ready to make a run for it. Through careful breathing and the desperation not to embarrass myself I managed to stay in the room. They say it is the aim of your first session to just stay in the room. It is a big shock to the system to be in intense heat for so long and exercise. I spoke to the teacher afterwards and said I found it frustrating having to stop because of nausea as I was exhilarated to be pushing myself. Apparently the feeling of sickness is partly the adjustment process but also more specifically it is the toxins coming out. Well, that was a bit of a hit! I suppose those odd packets of crisps and "choc-o-clock" have caught up with me. I also stopped smoking just three days before. So that's probably it!! It has definitely given me more ambition to stick to no smoking and I have also seriously cut back the glass of wine with dinner and no easy grab and go food except for fruit! I will report back as to whether this makes any difference to the nausea after my second session tomorrow.  

So some quick tips for your first session:
Wear form fitting gym wear not baggy clothes
Take your own towel (I just took one medium bath towel for lying over my mat but a hand towel would be beneficial to pat yourself down)
Drink a lot of water all day not just before. Drink it all day.
Don't eat too close to your class but ensure you've consumed slow burning energy food.
Don't stress if you need to sit down at all to begin with; it is an adjustment process

This entry was posted on Friday, 4 October 2013 and is filed under ,,,. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

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