Saturday, 19 February 2011

10 days to go...

I've been thinking about what I need to do in preparation for the challenge. I've frozen my gym membership until the challenge is complete, I need to think about my diet, I read somewhere that red meat should be avoided, need to look into this a bit more and also what I'm going to wear..yes I still  like to look good even if I am going to look like I've just came out of the shower after the session. 

It dawned on me last night that I should do at least ONE session before the actual challenge to reacquaint myself with the moves (it's been over a year since I last practised) and also the heat!  So, I popped to a class....I'm lucky to have a studio 10 minutes away from home.

I forgot about the stench of feet at the door. When entering any Bikram studio, everyone removes their shoes and leaves them by the door, this does present me with a slight problem because I do hate walking about barefooted. 

I quickly register and enter the studio to claim my mat. I decide to go right to the back as I haven't practised in so long and will need to copy others. As I claim my space, I notice this woman run towards my direction but I place my towel down just before she gets to the spot, I realise now she wants my spot. I ask if she wants it as I'm not that bothered, she says no but seems a bit awkward about it, so I ask her again, she then tells me that she has a bad habit of standing at that particular spot as it's a little cooler as it is by the emergency exit .Anyway, she starts chatting and is actually quite friendly. Class begins...

We begin with a breathing exercise which used to make me giggle, it always makes me think of roaring lions, the noises made during this exercise can be quite loud! I just join in now! I find myself remembering most of the postures and manage to get into most of them though my back and joints do make cracking noises along the way and I can feel how stiff I am. I still can't do posture 20 - supta vajrasana (fixed firm pose), it requires you to sit on your knees and bend right back onto the floor but with your bum touching the floor too. 

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Throughout the class, I notice a girl at the front who has obviously been practising Bikram for years, she has the yoga body I would like and she is so deep into the poses, she will be my benchmark!

Half an hour before the end of the class, I now realise why the woman who wanted my space wanted my space! The teacher opens the door and cold air gushes into the room and I feel like I'm in a club with a steam machine! It was a real treat though not sure it's good to be so hot then suddenly have this cold air on me. It's been nice not to think of anything but concentrate on getting into the postures and I'm feeling energised which doesn't last long.

When I get home, I'm feeling very light headed and drink 2 litres of water and get some food down me. I feel sleepy for the rest of the evening.

This morning my body aches, especially my arms......hope this means bye bye bingo wings! 


Wednesday, 16 February 2011

What's it all about?

Hello! Welcome to my first post. So what's with the blog you may ask? Well...we are well into the new year and every year I give myself a new challenge. This year it's the 30 day Bikram Yoga challenge. 

What is Bikram?  "Bikram is a form of yoga that is based around a strict set of 24 ‘asana’ (postures), 2 ‘panayama’ (breathing exercises) and a high temperature dynamic and is becoming increasingly popular. So, what does Bikram Yoga entail? Well, let’s get one thing straight: it’s not for the faint-hearted this intense workout takes place in a room that is warmed to a heatstroke-inducing 40ºC (105ºF) and 40% humidity. The cardiovascular class generally lasts for 90 minutes and in that time students are put through a gruelling regime of stretches and flexibility exercises aimed at increasing strength, balance and suppleness". (

My last Bikram class was well over a year ago and I was never a regular but always enjoyed it, however the repetition put me off going anymore than twice a month and it's not so great for your wallet! One sesh can cost up to £15. 

How did I decide on this challenge? I was totally inspired by two people I know who are both midway through their challenges, one of whom (Kath) is going through her second challenge, follow her here: I've been saying for the last few months that I want to get back into Bikram as the benefits are numerous: lose weight, flushes toxins from your body, improves flexibility, tones, strengthens, improves circulation and much more. So what better way to get back into Bikram than to throw myself into a 30 day challenge! 

The challenge is self explanatory, do it for 30 days consecutively. Start date is 01.03.11 - 12 days to go......this blog will give you a daily account of my challenge. 

Wish me luck!