The heat enclosed around me and sweat started to stream down my arms and legs. I inhaled the deep, dark humid air which boasted of 105 degrees and relaxed. Right as the instructor was to begin, the door opened and flooded in the light and cool air. Instantly the focus of the room was to the intruder and without missing a beat, the instructor’s comments lead me to the best Bikram yoga class I’ve ever had.
“Don’t be late for your Enlightenment, Dear.”
I love yoga. It’s fantastic; it is relaxing. It is also pure and utter hell– at least until you’re finished. Bikram’s 90 minutes of Houston weather (but indoors) weeds out the weary and feeble from the brazen and bare (It is one step away from Nudie Yoga. Seriously, why do overweight men insist on wearing a speedo? #Awkward). Mentally yelling at yourself for the volunteered torture and counting down the minutes until class is let out, the final shavasana (aka: the sleeping pose) makes you want to never leave. Your mind, body, and soul are at peace.
I mention this torture and misery because I knew fully well what I was getting into. This wasn’t a beach meander during sunset, this was a workout disguised as romping on a mat in lululemon attire (See: yoga stereotypes). But yet, I purchased an unlimited membership for a month to challenge myself mentally and physically.
While his words echoed in the humid room, I couldn’t help but think about life’s timing. “Don’t be late to your Enlightenment, Dear.”
Life is made up of minutes and so few numbers contain all of our time. Being a modern girl in a modern world, I feel as if I am constantly rushing. My to-do list includes the necessary things because… well… I’ll forget to eat unless I schedule time to do so. And after rushing from work to a workout, my mind was anything but focused.
Yet instantly a cloudburst and crescendo sounded from within– it was time to seize the day.
- Yoga is practiced, not accomplished because you are never done. Just as our bodies are never perfect and “finished,” our minds have room for improvement.
As the sweat streamed onto my towel holding the many poses, I couldn’t help but smile. Wholly concentrating on living in the moment and pushing myself, I got to my version of enlightenment: a clear head.
So THIS is why yogis everywhere practice daily! Being released from the smog of to-dos, past-dues, and do-not-forgets I found the thin line of how beautiful and simple life is.
The 90 minute class passed within a blink (or 300) of an eye and laying in the final pose, the instructor said to prepare ourselves to meet the outside world again. Deep inhale in…