I will confess that I haven’t had regular exercise for over 6 months now. Yes, I walk and I occasionally hit the pool with my kids but my body hasn’t touched an elliptical machine, treadmill or weight equipment for a long, long time. Summer disturbed my routine and I just haven’t been able to get back into the gym again.
Months of physical inactivity didn’t necessarily mean that my mind wasn’t busy thinking about exercise. The longer I stayed away from the gym, the more I realized that it wasn’t any longer right for me. I’ve been ‘going to the gym’ for almost 25 years now. Sure, there have been hiatuses, but I always went back. After all, exercise makes me feel good.
The inability to drag myself back to the gym this time made me think that I should perhaps consider alternatives. My friend D waxed enthusiastically about hot yoga (aka Bikram Yoga) and suggested I at least give it a try. Images of Jane Fonda style aerobics done in a hot room filled with sweaty people instantly leaped through my head. Didn’t appeal. And, I was worried that I might have a heart attack.
I finally broke down and agreed. Yes, I’d try hot yoga. I was warned to eat lightly, drink lots of water and sit down if I became dizzy or nauseated. The room was packed, it was hot and there was a funky odor. I managed to overcome my initial fear and got ready for class. Within minutes I was dripping sweat every which way. The postures were intense and I’m sure I botched up most of them. But oh, the hot, humid air felt good. And I could feel myself getting into it. An hour into the 90 minute class I was ready to leave – tired, spent. But I refused to give in, D quietly cheering me on.
Is hot yoga for me? Not sure, but I’m going again tonight.