The 30 day Hot Yoga Challenge // The Start

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One year ago in the hectic city named Ho Chi Minh City in Southern Vietnam I discovered Yoga and what a difference it makes to your life. Both Vietnam and Yoga are now very important parts of my life. Click here if you want to read about how I started my path with Yoga in Vietnam. It has now been 3 months since I left Vietnam and I miss it quite terribly. Actually, 3 months right on the day. Wow.

I am now in Calgary, Canada. For my comeback to Yoga I chose to go with ‘Soul Hot Yoga’ right by Deerfoot Trail on 126th Ave, Calgary. I did a few regular Yoga classes in Vancouver but I was definitely missing the heat. I was more than happy to discover that I am surrounded by Hot Yoga studios in South Calgary and that they offer a 40$ unlimited trial for a month. So… why not make the most out of it, make it a challenge, go 30 times, every day for a month? See what it actually does to my body and mind.

As Hot Yoga is super popular in North America I thought this would be something interesting for a lot of people to follow. How will she feel after the classes? Which class has which effect? Which muscles will hurt afterwards? Will she make it? Does the heat actually make you loose more weight than regular Yoga classes? Are you able to burn up to a thousand calories per class, as the rumors say? Does the heat make it easier for you to stretch? If you google those questions you will get all kinds of results. So I want to give you the chance to actually follow me through my challenge, I will even weigh in and share it with you because well, I don’t give a shit ;). I’ve always weighed about the same, 55kg +/-. As right now, 1 day before I start my challenge, I am in the + section, 57,5kg (127 creepy pounds), I wouldn’t mind loosing some of that during the challenge. But it is not the point. I’m curious. I wanna test the rumors and really get to the bottom of that blazing topic of ‘Hot Hot Yoga’ . If you are too, well here we go! Day 1 will start with a class that is called ‘Vinyasa Flow II’ at around 30°C. I want to take it easy for at least the first two classes before I actually enter the hot room and ‘Soul Hot Yoga’ offers a couple of warm classes for explorers.

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Day 1: Vinyasa Flow II

4.45 – 5.45 PM

Instructor: Chris McMullan

I made it to my first class. Yay! My one-month-trial has begun. I am welcomed warmly by a woman at the reception and my first teacher. The colors of the studio are warm as well, relaxing,  Every room smells just lovely. It feels like going to a 5 * Spa. Something I didn’t quite get in Vietnam. Everything is very ‘sssshhhhhhh’. Don’t talk, it’s a sacred place. A little bit exaggerated in my opinion and something I also didn’t really get in Vietnam etiher, but it’s ok, I understand it, and Canadians are very talkative, so it would probably get too loud in there easily ;-P. Anyways, shhh or no shhh, I am so glad that this class with Chris (hey a namesake!) ended up being my first one. Because this wasn’t only an amazing class, it was the best Yoga Class I ever attended. What makes the difference? Well, your instructor is really important for a good experience. The way he instructs you to breathe and the flow of the poses that he chooses are very important. Sometimes a teacher can instruct you to go from one pose into another and it just won’t work out that well for you, or it just ‘flows’ and comes easily and naturally in a different set.

His class was perfection. It is called ‘Flow II’, and we were flowing. It was a fast paced class at a lower temperature, around 30°C. The workout felt great. I sweated, but I didn’t feel nauseous or close to fainting (things you read about when researching on Hot Yoga online). Vinyasa as a term refers to the alignment of movements and breath in a dynamic flow.  The room is dark and scented, pure relaxation. Slow Yoga music plays along. After class when we all lay on our backs for a final relaxation, the teacher goes around and places cold, lemon scented little towels by our heads, which I gladly put on my forehead, eyes and nose. Oh wow.

It was fantastic. I am stoked for those 30 days.

Update from the next day: I definitely felt the workout. Mostly in my arms, sholders & legs.

 

Day 2: Warm Vinyasa Flow

Noon – 1Pm

Instructor: Jenni Chinski

My 2nd day. I totally felt what I did the day before and I started worrying a tiny bit about my challenge. How will I ever get out of this alive? I chose the Warm Vinyasa Flow for my second time, to keep the temperature lower as I am getting used to it and do a similar class to the one I liked so much on Day 1. I arrived at noon in the middle of the week, obviously there wouldn’t be a huge crowd. We were 3, which was awesome as teacher Jenni could take it easy and really watch and improve our postures, give some advises on improving the very important flow of plank-upward-downward dog. Another successful class.

 

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