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Day 60- We did it!!

21 Mar

We did it! Sixty bikram classes in sixty days…I can’t believe it! C and I went to the 10am Saturday class and were joined with another challenger, the owner, and an energetic instructor- such good energy! I was so excited for the last class! It was insanely hot in the room…my towel was drenched, definitely the sweatiest I’ve ever been, but I had an AMAZING class. C and I both pushed ourselves a lot harder than usual and had really great classes (although I’m sooo sore now!). And I even smiled….a lot- at one point I was trying not to smile because I knew I looked insane smiling in such a hot room!

Such a great feeling of accomplishment it’s hard to put into words. This challenge was NOT easy. There were so many days I just didn’t want to go to class. I’ve never been this sore for so long- ever. I’ve never forced myself to workout when I feel sick or extremely tired…and honestly, I’ve never even had workouts this difficult. But when I hit that last savasana on Saturday, all of that just melted into my towel puddle. I’m just so proud of myself and my body for being able to complete this. Really really proud 🙂

And I’m really proud of C too! I never would have completed (or even attempted) this challenge without her. There were so many days when her encouragement was the only reason I even went to class.

I feel stronger…and I’m not willing to let that feeling go. I had wanted to take at least a month off from bikram and focus on running. But now that I’m at the end of the challenge (and haven’t taken a class in two days) I know I won’t be away for long 🙂

-L

Yay!!  It feels so great to finish this challenge.  I started out the challenge in arguably the worst shape of my life, coming off of three minor dermatological surgeries and an emotional rough patch and I can firmly say that I feel like a new person!  I am sore and dying to have a day off, but now that I finally can do that I’ve realized that I am more focused, confident, and stronger.  It took 60 days, 3 back-to-back doubles, countless bottles of water ingested and then sweated out, 1 “run out of class and give up” moment, 1 bout of the flu, and 56 loads of laundry, but I did it!!

It was great to be next to L during the last class.  I am so thankful to have a friend to have shared the experience with and NEVER would have gotten through it without her support and encouragement.  Her motivation throughout the process was truly inspiring 🙂  We really reeeeallly pushed ourselves in the sweat shop that was Saturday’s class.  But it was easy to do, considering the instructor was wonderful and we were surrounded by another challenger and instructor, who gave of positive encouragement and feedback throughout the process.

I truly am thankful to have had the opportunity to do this challenge and know that I will be incorporating bikram into my life on a regular basis.  Right now, I am looking forward to a few days of rest and relaxation following a celebratory dinner with L! Couldn’t be happier that we decided to do the 60-day challenge 🙂

-C

 

Day 59

21 Mar

Friday was my final double (thank goodness) of the challenge and also happened to be the final day before day 60. Procrastination? Check.

The first class went well but it was incredibly steamy in the room. Not to mention, the ear infection that I’ve had has really affected my ability to balance. So, in roder to preserve some energy I sat down…a lot. I would’ve felt bad about it but I stood in the back corner knowing that I wouldn’t be a rockstar from the outset. After the first class, I was pretty drained and tired. Thankfully, L showed up and we had one of my favorite instructors who always keeps a predictable, steady pace throughout class, so, despite sitting through a few of the standing series poses, I was actually stronger in the second class. Go figure! After class, we ran into the owner of the studio (who originally convinced us to do the 60 day vs the 30 day challenge) and he let us know that although he wouldn’t be teaching our 60th class, he was going to practice with us! I thought that this was a really nice and encouraging gesture. Looking forward to tomorrow!!!

Tonight, I plan to take it easy, with a nice dinner along with my roommate who is moving out tomorrow 😦 There seems to be so many things happening tomorrow that are bound to elicit some sort of emotion. Hopefully the elation of finishing the challenge will offset any sadness I have about her leaving. Cannot believe it’s already been 59 days. AND that I did 3 doubles in 6 days!

-C

Friday was such a beautiful day- definitely the type of day I’d love to go running outside- but we only have 2 classes left, so soon enough! Because it was so warm outside, the bikram room was on fire…it was sooooo hot in there! I didn’t sit down at all, but was really glad I had brought a Gatorade and a water into class.

I can’t remember anything else from class….just so excited for day 60! Taking it easy tonight too…don’t want anything to ruin my last day!

-L

Day 58

18 Mar

Because C and I wanted to go to happy hour after work on Thursday, we decided to go to the 6am class.  I wasn’t feeling great and was super tired, but I was pleasantly surprised at how well the class went.  I’ve also noticed this week that I have that familiar allover soreness back.  I wasn’t very sore that past couple of weeks since I wasn’t trying very hard (whining constantly doesn’t hurt my hamstrings).  It’s kind of nice that I can tell that I’m working harder this week!

I CANNOT believe that we only have 2 more classes/days left!  Sixty days is a lot- two full months …8 and a half weeks in total.  Sixty 1.5 hour classes- that’s 90 HOURS of bikram classes.  That’s insane!  And while I didn’t always put my best effort forward, I’m still surprised/impressed/proud that I could actually complete this!

-L

Morning class was rough for me.  I hadn’t been sleeping well due to my ear infection and it has consequently thrown off my balance.  I did, however, really appreciate our instructors steady pace throughout class and ended up having a decent class.  3 more classes and 2 days left!!

-C

Day 57

18 Mar

Despite my severe exhaustion from NO sleep the night before and the severe pain in my ear, L and I headed to the 6pm class and took spots in the front with another challenger. Class was tough for me because of the pressure in my head but I got through without sitting down, which is an accomplishment retrospectively since I have a full blown ear infection.   No idea if this has anything to do with bikram, but I am assuming not.  I think it has to do with whatever cold/flu I had last week.   I am REALLY looking forward to resting when this challenge is over.  I can’t remember the last time I just took a few hours to comfortably relax.  Only three more days and 4 more classes!

-C

After Tuesday’s great class, I was looking forward to the next class.  The 6pm class was good, but I got super hungry in the middle of class and found it hard to concentrate.  Overall I’d say the class was a good one, but nothing super memorable from it.  I just feel bad that C is still sick!

3 more classes!

-L

Day 56

16 Mar

Very long overdue…but here goes: an optimistic post!!  Last night’s class was GREAT…and it’s been a long while since I’ve said that.  C and I went to the 8pm class and I honestly expected a bad class.  I had 5 oreos before class (it was 2 hours before…I thought I’d be okay!) and so I felt pretty icky on the drive over.  But C and I were laughing over our horrible class prep and soon I completely forgot that I felt sick.

As we signed in, the instructor asked us how the challenge was going and we both responded half-heartedly*.  He suggested we try drinking electrolytes and even gave us some electrolyte packets he had! I’m not sure if it’s mental or what, but I really did feel less worn-down after class.  C and I also chatted with the instructor’s girlfriend (also an instructor ) in the locker room about teacher training, her real-life job, and how she balances it all.  This combo of instructor positivity, excitement for another challenger on her day 60, and C’s always positive encouragement translated into an amazing class.  No dizziness, no nauseousness, no shakiness- I felt strong throughout the entire class.  In fact, class flew by.  And…drumroll…I even smiled a couple of times.  Without prompting.  And I tried– I tried to lock my knee, I tried to lift my legs that extra inch, I tried in every single pose.  And I was sore after class, in a good way.

It felt so good having a great class.  I tend to be such a complainer (maybe even negative?) that it’s easy for me to get wrapped up in everything that went wrong.  Such a nice change to not complain for once 🙂

*I keep forgetting to mention this, but I LOVE how all of the instructors at our studio are always willing and interested in answering any questions.  They really do enjoy teaching classes and it shows in how nice/informed/helpful they all are!

4 more days!!

-L

Day 56 was great.  It was my first tmie in three days NOT doing a double and it was easy peasy. Like L said, the instructor gave us magical electrolytes and it gave me something to look forward to in class.  I felt strong and motivated throughout class and loved the fact that it wasn’t super crowded 🙂

Another factor in my motivation was that another challenger completed her 60th class with us last night at 8pm. She seemed really happy at the end of class and it made me realize how close we are to being in that same boat! I can’t wait!  Unfortunately, my body seems to be breaking down at the moment, as I have developed sever inner-ear pain over the past day and haven’t been able t function and sleep. My body isbasically falling apart :/  so I am really looking forward to getting my tmie back from bikram and going when I want to, and (most importantly) allowing my body to rest and recuperate.  Not to mention, I have another double to complete in the next 3 days. Nonetheless, I am really pumped for the remainder of the challenge and really proud of myself and L 🙂

-C

Day 55

15 Mar

I did it again! Another back to back double!

Looking to knock out my second of three necessary double sessions before Saturday, I planned to attend 6 am class with L and then hit up the 6pm class after work with her again. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances (stupid iPhone alarm bug) I woke up exactly one hour late and just ended up going straight into work. Thankfully, I was able to leave work at a decent time and head straight to yoga. I was determined to knock out two classes but wasn’t sure that it would happen. But it did and it was awesome! My first class was pretty empty, with a very focused and faced-paced teacher who I really like. I had a strong class and hardly felt winded or exhausted throughout the entire thing. By the second class (and after an apple and another liter of water) I was ready to go with L for round 2. During this class, I didn’t have to sit once. I was more flexible, much more focused (despite all of the idiots who I was taking class with- who stands directly in front of people at bikram?)

4 classes in 28hours? I’ll take it. Doubles are awesome. Bikram is awesome. I’m going to go (drink wine/watch bachelor then) pass out now.

-C

My third (and final!) double. Not quite as easy as my other doubles… I decided to do then 6am/6pm combo with C, but unfortunately I ended up at the 6am alone. And I’d say it was one of my top 5 worst classes during this challenge. Because of daylight savings time, waking up at 5:15 am was really 4:15 am…and it felt like it. I was shakey during the entire class and even sat down during the first posture. Like a loser.

Luckily my second class was so much better. I didn’t sit down at all and dare I say it, actually felt strong.

We only have 5 more classes/days left! I’m going to make an effort to be only positive from here on out! No more whining about a challenge that I chose to do…

-L

Day 54

14 Mar

Day 54 will go down as the day I had a “bikram breakdown.”  I woke up to gorgeous weather on Sunday, went to a bridal show with my engaged friend (yummy champagne and cupcakes!), had a huge late lunch (yummy again!), had a tiny cheese and wine tasting with my roomie (so much yum!), and then went to the 6pm class. (For the record, I know this wasn’t the best prep…but I’m sick of planning my life around yoga).  C and another challenger were doing a double and I stood somewhat close to both of them, thinking that I would feel stronger since it was my first class that day.

Wrong.  Very, very wrong.  From the first breathing exercise I felt off.  My legs were shaking, I was pouring sweat (even fell out of Eagle pose because I didn’t expect my legs to be that slippery!), and I couldn’t focus on my breathing. I started to panic around the 4th pose and sat down over and over.  It was SO HOT in there!  The heat was radiating off of everything: my own body, my mat, even my water bottle was on fire.  And the instructor was talking so much.  Talk talk talky talk blah blah dumb story blah blah talk talk.  I couldn’t handle it.  I was making faces, gasping for air, HATING the fact that today was only day 54 and not 60.

When I started crying at the beginning of Camel pose, I knew I crossed to the dark side.  I don’t like bikram yoga anymore.  I don’t like this challenge anymore.  I can’t handle doing the exact same 26 postures and 2 breathing exercises. Every.single.day.  I need to do something, anything different.  I’m over it.  Done.

-L

I did my first double today! Back to back! Here’s what went down:

Class 1: My roommates came along for my first class, and we had a new instructor, who just so happened to be a drill seargent.  But he didn’t bother me, so I didn’t care. The room was HOT!  But it felt great 🙂  I surrendered to the fact that I would be in the room for a long long time and ended up just taking each moment for what it was and pushed myself through class without taking a break.  By the time class was over, I felt excited to see what my body would be capable in a consecutive class.  There was another challenger who also would be doing a second class, so it was nice to have company in my impending misery.

Class 2: So L showed up (thank gawd), albeit kind of tipsy and overfed, to give me the extra boost I needed to get through my second class!  My attitude was good and I walked into class and immediately wanted to die.  The room HAD NOT cooled down a single degree since the end of the previous class. L checked the temperature and it read 107 before anybody even started gathering in the studio and moving around. This set the stage for what would become a class or pure anarchy.There were 4 challengers in class, myself and L included, one doing her first class of the day and another doing her second.  The one girl also doing a double sat down during the first pose and never got up for the remainder of the standing series. L and I were up and down taking rests during the standing series because it was so flipping hot in there!  I think because I was in class 2/2 I sweat more than I ever had in my entire life and was actually surprised at how inflexible I was.  I was under the impression that I’d be some kind of crazy bendy person by my second class but I just wasn’t 😦  Everybody was dropping like flies throughout the entire first series.

In the mid-class savasana, our teacher told us of the untimely and tragic death of a woman who was well-connected in the yoga community and read a really inspirational quote which included the following:

This lifetime of ours is transient as autumn clouds.
To watch the birth and death of beings
Is like looking at the movements of a dance.
A lifetime is like a flash of lightning in the sky.
Rushing by, like a torrent down a steep mountain.
–Buddha

So, of course, being the oversensitive over-exerted person I am, I started to cry during savasana.  But this made me think of all of the complaining I do.  With all of the awful things that peolpe have to face every day, this is anything but difficult, instead, I am giving myself a gift of serenity and physical and mental aid every single day.   I also decided that it wasn’t fair to myself to sit out any of the postures for the rest of class.  So I pushed through and finished by first double!

YAY!

-C