Yoga brings a sort of inner peace and balance to my life, it allows for physical transformation and a ton of health benefits, not to mention it keeps me from going crazy. I literally can tell within myself if I haven’t done yoga in bit; I get irritable more often and notice a less calming self-balance. It literally keeps your marbles in place. Truth.
When faced with the challenge of doing a 60 minute, 90 degree yoga class for 30 days, I must admit, it was a bit intimidating. Not only does the motivation to show up on the mat every single day need to be present, but there are also non-motivational factors that contribute to this amazing relationship. My mission was simple, completing the 2700 Degree Challenge at YogaSpark; what was about to become my second home for the next month. It was also to be my third challenge at the studio, and let me assure you, it stays challenging.
Before you embark on a journey of 30 days of yoga, make sure you are prepared and posses these 5 traits:
Without the ‘C’ word, you’re pretty much screwed. It’s like anything else that requires your utmost attention. I cannot lie, some days were tough; whether it be laziness, traffic, a scheduling conflict, or just not in the mood, your yogi butt needs to be at the studio on your mat! Though it was occasionally rough, there wasn’t a single time I ever regretted it. Half the battle is showing up.
You cannot by any means be uncomfortable with sweating your ass off. Compared to regular yoga classes where you can happily go straight to brunch without a shower and feeling totally zen, one of the blessings and curses of hot yoga is that it’s hot; meaning you need a shower right after and this needs to be considered and will affect your schedule. You begin feeling the sweat about 15 minutes into the class and that’s when things get serious. This is one of the parts that I thought I was going to be the most uncomfortable with, since I usually can’t stand being in hot places for too long, but it was the complete opposite! The feeling of each and every one of my sweat glands at work in unison and knowing that my body will be in motion for an hour is not only empowering, but it comes with a feeling of accomplishment and actual happiness.
During class, nothing else matters but what you’re doing right then, you’re literally living your most present life. Away from your digital world, smart phone, worries outside the hot room, everything. These moments that you’re spending with other like-minded yogis are moments you’re taking for yourself. No one can take that away from you. Out of the 24 hours in the day, you choose to take one hour all to yourself. You’re a hundred percent being selfish and I’m here to tell you, that it’s totally fine! This moment is yours and you made the decision to give it to no one else.
Why are you on the mat? What is it that brings you there and what feeling are you after? For me, it was a physical and mental challenge. I challenged to honor my space, and my body. While on the mat, I feel a sort of euphoria that gives me energy and power to mentally keep going not only during the class, but during life. It provides an internal self-pep-talk that keeps me from stopping, but also reminds me that it’s ok to stop. Yoga has helped determine how far my body can go, how far it has gotten and how far is too far. My intention for this challenge was to keep the word ‘challenge’ a bit light-hearted. I want to reach my goal and complete the 30 days, but I also needed to know that it was ok to pause and take a moment to listen to my body and not get hurt. If I cannot stay in Crane (Crow) Pose for longer than I did the day before, or I fall out of Half Moon, it’s fine because there’s always tomorrow or the next month or even the next year! Yoga is a lifestyle and your intention should be clear and uniquely catered to you.
How much power do you intend on giving during class? There are practices that give you a more spiritual and less physically challenging avenue for your time, hot power vinyasa yoga is different. What I love about this practice, besides the natural high it provides, is the physical benefits. After just 15 days, I felt stronger, my muscles and skin were tighter and my energy levels were through the roof. Power yoga will give you exactly what you’re putting in, so if you’re looking for a relaxed feeling, you’ll have to wait until Savasana, which by the way is the best part, however, it can also be the most challenging. Quieting the mind and reaching total relaxation is no easy feat.
The cherry on top of the experience is being named YogaSpark’s Hot Yogi for the month of September! What an honor! Thank you to all of you who make Spark-ing possible. Check out my interview on their website here.
Editor’s Note: This is not a sponsored post. YogaSpark in no way has compensated me for this post or any other up to this date. The opinions in this article are genuine and come from a personal experience I chose to explore.