The Sweet Smell of Victory

I can feel it… the end.  I know I have said it in previous posts, but I honestly couldn’t even imagine what “the end” of this 60 Day Bikram Challenge would feel like.  When it started the excitement of doing something new and challenging myself kept me going.  Around Day 30 all I could think about is, “Why am I doing this again.”  And now after class #58 today, I am so proud of myself.  I am going to do this.

I was Blessed this week, by my two best girlfriends coming to their first Bikram class to support me.  Felicia hated every 90 minutes of Bikram yesterday and I’m pretty sure Lisa felt the same way today.  Neither one of them liked it or saw why I would want to do such a crazy thing.  I don’t know if I was expecting them to fall deeply in love with the practice, (which clearly they did not), but I thought maybe they’d see why I have a new love affair with this yoga.  It actually does make me smile though when I think about it.  Good friends are so priceless.  They support you when they don’t know what they are getting into and trust you to stay in a 105 degree room for 90 minutes.  And they cheer you on when they have no clue why you decided to do a crazy challenge involving HOT A** yoga class for 60 days straight.  I can honestly say I have some of the best friends a girl could ever ask for.

A few weeks ago I was searching (i love google), about Bikram’s 60 day Challenge.  One of the sites of a fellow yogi that I came across explained that the first 30 days of the Challenge is physical.  Your body will change drastically and you feel yourself getting stronger.  CHECK!  The last 30 days is mental and you will stretch in ways you never thought possible.  CHECK!
It’s funny how even though I took this practice serious when I started 6 months ago, you really do hold yourself back mentally even when your body can and will keep going.  For example, I realized as I was talking to my little sister tonight one thing that really threw me.
Since day one of yoga I have HATED the triangle posture (this is not my first mention of my hatred of triangle).  It was the worst thing I have ever had to do physically and I would sike myself out the whole beginning of the class until it came time and at some point would lay down and give up.  Ever since last week when one of my favorite teachers, Carlos threw a stuffed tiger at me in class and told me to get “Bengal Tiger Strength” in front of the entire class, I changed.  I haven’t laid down once during Triangle posture.  Not once!  There is no coincidence here….  I have stopped thinking about it and now I just do it.

WOW… in what other areas of my life am I doing this?

“The last 30 days of the challenge is mental…..”

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.  You are able to say to yourself, “I have lived through this horror.  I can take the next thing that comes along.”…. You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”
-Eleanor Roosevelt

30 days of Bikram and Beyond….

The picture above is old, but I just wanted to show the amazing support I am getting from my husband on this very long yoga journey of mine.  My friends and family have also been great, but no really quite understands the extent of my challenge until they actually try a Bikram class for themselves!  One of my friends, Rosie came for her first class last week and said that I am now her hero!  After my little sister tried it for the first time (my class #30), the first thing she said was that it was harder than child birth!
  I can’t believe how long it has been since I have written a post.  Amazing that after my “Bohlke challenge” was over where I did a blog post everyday for 30 days, I abandoned my blog for a long time!  
Hmmmm…. thinking I need to take note of this for my Bikram challenge, so I do not let myself walk away from yoga for a long time 🙂
Yesterdays class was class #50!  It’s hard to believe that I have actually made it this far.  I honestly thought I would never see this day.  When in the beginning or middle of any sort of challenge it is hard to see the end result, the goal.  I know that next week when I finish day 60, it will feel amazing to have accomplished this crazy challenge!  I still laugh that I wanted to do it in the first place because it is such a hard thing to do.  My life has revolved around my yoga practice and when I am going to get my class done for that day.  I have only missed three classes (which I have done 3 doubles to be caught up) and need to do 2 more doubles if I want to finish on Thanksgiving as planned.  I really don’t think I can do any more doubles though.  I wish I could explain the pain my body is in.  It’s exhausted.  My hips and hamstrings feel constantly sore and getting to class is getting harder and harder.  Hoping that class this afternoon goes better than yesterday, as I am now starting the final countdown!  
There is some disappointment with my practice in the challenge though.  And my fellow Bikram friends may or may not understand.  Some of my postures have improved TEN FOLD and some seem to have gotten worse 🙁  I know my body is stronger, I can definitely feel that yet wish I was further along.  Most teachers and students that have practiced this yoga for many years say it can take YEARS to master certain postures…. UGHHH!  The one I fight with the most is triangle.  This past week I have been trying to take evening classes because my body feels better then.  I am still sore and tight in the 9:30 and noon classes.  I had no choice but to take a morning class yesterday though and triangle almost killed me!  I laid down in savasana to rest and the teacher, Carlos threw a stuffed tiger at my head!!  Told me to get my “bengel tiger strength”and GET UP!  I just about killed him.  Then he threatened to “un-sign” my Challenge card!  GRRRRR….  Needless to say, I got up and was able to do the posture. 
No matter how hard this challenge has been, how sore my body is everyday… I WILL finish next week.  Hopefully before Saturday, but I can’t wait to say I have finished the 60 Day Bikram Challenge and sign the wall of the studio 🙂
Wish me luck!