I’ve been meaning to sign up for yoga classes for a while. I’ve been following plus-size yogis on instagram (@diannebondyyoga, @mynameisjessmyn), and I’ve decided that my body doesn’t have to look or bend a certain way in order to do yoga in front of others. I’ve taken normal classes before and loved them, so I decided to push myself and try hot yoga for here weeks because the local hot yoga place has a special. Here’s a step-by-step of my experience.
- I’m in a very warm room. Someone just told me to pour water all over my yoga mat. I am kind of sleepy but feelin’ stretchier than normal. A middle-aged woman named Angie chats with me about coming there once a day.
- A very small yogi named Christine walks into the room. She talks to us about our sankalpas. Dang, it’s hot. But I think of my sankalpa (see end of blog post).
- We start moving. Alright alright alright, feelin’ stretchy, feelin’ good.
- WOW IT’S HOT, how long have we been doing this?? 20 minutes? Crap, there are 40 minutes left.
- Yoga. We’re doing it. There is sweat dripping into my eyes. My hair, which is normally stubbornly straight, starts to CURL.
- 30 minutes in. Can’t breathe. Feel heartbeat in eyeballs. This seems bad.
- Lie on mat.
- Try to breathe. Breathe along with my fellow classmates, who are somehow breathing AND doing speedy quick yoga.
- Heartbeat returns to normal. Still very sweaty, but I don’t think that’s going to change anytime soon.
- Get up. Try to do chair pose. Nope. Try to do crow pose. Nope. But I’m trying.
- Thank goodness, it’s time to lie on the mat and do some stretching. I can lie down, I’m great at that. But it’s harder than it looks because my body is the sweatiest it has been in my 23 years of life. I’m slippin’ and slidin’ all over the place.
- Tiny yoga instructor Christine hands us all freezing cold, wet washcloths. I’ve never been happier to hold a washcloth in my hand. I slap it on my face immediately.
- Yoga instructor tells me she’s proud of me for staying in the room for the whole hour because not many people can do it the first time. I look around and everyone seems to be suffering at the same level I am. Sweet.
- Christine says it stayed at a steady NINETY-NINE DEGREES in the studio the whole time. I’m a superhero, basically.
- I leave the studio feeling tired and very, very badass.
I just finished my second class, and I spent more time lying on my mat trying not to suffocate than I would have liked. But I stayed in there, and I’m so proud of myself. It was as sweaty and tough as the first time, but I’m so glad I did it. I am becoming deeply myself.