I wrote that on Friday I started my day in Bikram yoga. I decided to take it easy that morning and instead of heading out the door and going to the 6am class I waited and went to the 9am class instead. Everyone had the same idea and decided to sleep in. The funny thing is that I was up and just hanging out in the kitchen not doing much of anything but it was dark and cold and figured I had the whole day to myself so no need to rush. Next time I will rush, I will make it to the early class because I will have room to stretch out, I will have a good practice and I will be able to see myself in the mirror.

That is not the choice I made on Friday and therefore I was in a small, hot, smelly room with 46 other people. We were so close our mats were almost touching and I had a woman directly in front of me so when it came time to find a focal point it was her behind. Not that I wanted this as my focal point but I could not find even a bit of myself in the mirror and I needed something to focus on.

The instructor did not have any other place in the room to stand so for 90 minutes she should directly behind me. Not on my mat but very close to me. This was actually OK because I really tried to just focus on her voice, listen to the commands and tried to forget all the people around me stealing my air. Once the first breathing exercise started I knew I was going into panic mode. The woman in the purple shorts to my right was so close I could hear her and feel her sweat coming over to my side, the woman in the black shorts to the left was just as close and really breathing hard. The whole breathing exercise I was trying to clear my mind but I just kept thinking that they were taking what little air I had. My deep breaths were rushed as I tried to conserve my own air and make it last 90 minutes. At this point we are only minutes into the practice and I can tell I’m not going to make it. The woman to my right corner I actually consider a friend and still I don’t want to share my air with her. Who are all these people that came out for the New Year’s Eve morning Bikram class. I have seen quite a few of them but there are definitely newbies here and I wonder if the New Year’s Resolutions started early. Are these people trying to lose 5 pounds so they fit into their dress attire tonight? Are they making exercise and yoga their priority and getting ahead start on it? I don’t really know what brought everyone out today but I wished I was not there.

I am committed at this point and spend a lot of time trying to get out of my head and focus on the woman in front of me as a distraction from the discomfort I’m feeling and realize that I’m way over heated and starting to feel dizzy. Obviously I’m not the only one and the instructor comments that the room and atmosphere are very different then what people are use to and if we are regular practitioners and feeling dizzy to take a knee, at that point about 4 of us drop to our towels. I spend a few minutes analyzing how I feel, why I chose to be there that day and how I am going to make it through this class. Once I find myself and my focus I complete the class but honestly even after it is done I don’t feel well. I am so glad to have the 90 minutes behind me and to be out in the cold and just heading home. I call my husband to laugh about it because at this point I can laugh and I realize I’m happy that people are venturing out and trying yoga. I tell everyone I come in contact with how much I love it and all the different types of yoga out there and encourage people to step into a studio of any type of yoga just to try it. This is my preach and although I enjoy practicing with people further away from me and really don’t like it when people step on my mat or sweat on me but I do respect them for having the courage to try it.

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