Yesterday was the final session of my 30 day Bikram challenge and I am feeling pretty sweet. And I just mis-read that as sweat. There was lots of that too. Scores of it, in fact. So that’s thirty classes in thirty days, in rooms heated to a minimum of 40ºC, each session lasting 90 minutes. Having missed a couple over this period I have done a few double-up classes as well toward the end.
Note to anyone out there who is thinking “pshhhht, that’s easy!” Or “isn’t that roping you into some sort of religious/spiritual cult?” Think again – and don’t knock it until you try it. You are in control of your practice, always. Every class is an experience unto itself. I had my doubts before I tried it myself. When you first start out there’s that initial after-shock triggering a response along the lines of “shitballs, I nearly died in there, spending most of my time on the floor pretty much gasping for air. What just happened?” Thankfully a regular practice helps with such things. I personally only endure that now on rare occasion and am now stronger and more flexible than I have ever been. The feeling after each class varies but for the most part is peaceful and happy. It’s priceless. Also a cheeky hint for those of you who tend to overindulge occasionally on the weekends(guilty!), a Bikram class is a miracle worker for hangovers – from death to fresh in just ninety minutes!
It’s been a tough road this last year. And a huge turning point in my own journey in life. There are still times when I can’t see the light at the end of the metaphorical tunnel, when around every corner lies forever more corners, and when no one seems to ‘get’ me. Because, you know, that’s just life sometimes. But I still dragged myself to class. Turned myself from a victim to a survivor. Changed from wallowing to experiencing feelings with a purpose. From having so little energy to an abundance of it each day. Little do you know this time last year if I had wanted to touch my toes, I’d have had to pay someone to do it for me. Now i can do a pretty sweet execution of standing head to knee. So hooray for progress! And hooray for Bikram!
No one will ever tell you it’s easy. But they will tell you that it’s worth it. Give it a go.