Yoga is like oatmeal. I know being exposed to it more frequently would be great for me, and I always think,” I’m going to do this more often”, when I finish. But the truth, up to this point, is that I don’t. When the time comes to go to yoga or go for a run, I choose a run.
When I am there, though, I love it. I love the vibe: the clean, relaxed, body and soul cleansing aspect of exercise without stress. I love the explanation behind poses, the reminders to breath, and the positive affirmation. It’s something I typically do a few times a year and wish I did on a more regular basis.
And as far as men are concerned, I think Jeremy is over thinking it. I would invest in some spandex, maybe these, be psyched that the next time a flash mob dance breaks out he can consider a high leg kick, and stop worrying about it.
Hot yoga. Now that is a different story. Hot yoga is trying to avoid the spatter from the sweat droplets of the person in front or beside you. Trying to grab your feet, which are slippery as a greased up watermelon in water, to hold a difficult pose. Wiping your brow with a towel so drenched that you’re not sure it’s even absorbing anymore … 5 minutes into class. Doing the same 26 postures each class over and over.
Recently, my friend Lindsey convinced me to go to a hot yoga class with her. She had been going a ton of late and was, even she will admit, obsessed with the class. So, I borrowed a pair of spandex so short my father wouldn’t have let me out of the house (had he seen me) grabbed a towel and headed to class. I should have considered, before enthusiastically accepting, that I hate saunas because I get what I can only imagine is the closest thing to a panic attack without being a panic attack when I’m in a sauna. It’s hot and I imagine all the little oxygen molecules that my lungs need just evaporating into thin air and I start to sweat, and have trouble breathing, and insist on leaving. I think the longest I’ve lasted in a sauna is about 2 minutes – and I grew up with one in the house.
As we walked into the class, I imagine inductees to hell experience the same wall of heat as they are high-fiving Satan, I realized that forgetting water was a grave mistake. But our instructor was chipper, and Lindsey drove, so I had no out. Being one of the last ones there, we were in the middle of the third row (the back), positioned behind a woman with a body that Gisele would kill for thankfully blocking my view of the mirror. I imagined, as we were warming up, that I looked like her in my booty shorts and later on, that I was as kick ass at yoga as she. This was, of course, tougher to do as I found myself needing “time out” on the mat with my head in-between my legs trying not to pass out while she continued to bend and contort and yogatize herself. The class went on and on. Poses were repeated, our chipper instructor continued to talk without taking a breath, and my sweat droplets continued to multiply exponentially as I careened down Negative Lane, straight past Desperation Alley and headed snack dab towards Hysteria-ville.
Of course, the class ended without me running out the door. Once outside, it took me ten minutes and one coconut water to feel like I wasn’t going to vomit and/or pass out. And once I got past that, I felt good. Exhausted in a great way. Apparently, I’m supposed to give it a few more tries. And while I accept this train of thought and know I will be back to hot yoga (I even bought my own pair of short shorts), I also feel that you don’t have to be miserable to get a good work out in.
But if it’s like so many sports, where it gets more enjoyable as your body gets used to it, I might just start enjoying it and post about my love affair with hot yoga. Has anyone who reads this been miserable at first with something only to grow to love it?