Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Hot Yoga. Are you frickin' kidding me?

Have you ever heard that if you try to put a frog in boiling water he'll just jump out, but if you put him in warm water and heat the water slowly to boiling, he won't notice the water getting hotter and stay in there? I know, there are many flaws to this story, such as who are all these people boiling frogs and did this really happen enough for the story to get passed around this much? I'm guessing this originated from a redneck recipe. Nevertheless, last night, I was the frog in the warm water too dumb to jump out of the pot.

A few weeks ago, Living Social had a deal from Hot Yoga Largo for 15 sessions for $20. Since I'm about as bendable as a day old chicken bone, I figured, what the hell, why not? Oh, and I'd read that it burns a ton of calories. I am always up for getting more results from a minimum amount of effort so this was right up my alley.

Since I just bought a new bikini and the bottom was considerably larger than the top, I figured this was a good week to start. I went online last night and signed up for the 7-8:30 pm class. 90 minutes? That seemed kinda long, but that's just more calories so I'm good. I did some research and read that first time students sometimes get sick or pass out from the heat. This is sounding like a party already! Anytime I need a bucket or smelling salts, I know a good time is a'comin.

About 10 years ago, I wisely invested in a yoga mat. I cracked it open for the first time yesterday afternoon. Literally- this thing had been rolled up for so long it was like unrolling a saltine. I've always had all these fantastic visions of me in a cool yoga outfit, all calm and fit and doing yoga all in super cliche places, like at the beach or out by the pool before work (turns out I'd have to wake up more than 30 seconds before I start working AND go outside, two strikes in my book), or maybe I'd do it before I went to sleep to help me relax. Whatever I intended, it didn't happen, so last night my mat and I were making our virgin trip to the yoga studio. And of course, like a teenage mom on her way to see her boyfriend during visiting hours at JDC, I left that baby at home and had to turn around halfway there and go back and get it.

I get to the studio, check in, then head inside to set up the mat. I didn't expect the room to be hot already when I walked in. I thought it would heat up gradually once we got started, but okay, I can deal with this. It wasn't bad, kind of like a really low temp dry sauna. But I immediately had a problem; the only available space was right in front of the heater in the corner. Frick that. The instructor correctly interpreted my standing there looking pointedly at the heater and back at her and had everyone move their mats together so I picked a spot in the middle of the room next to a girl my age but much larger. I knew I'd suck at most of this stuff so I wanted to sit next to the one person who'd make me feel better. Don't judge me- who wants to sit next to the anorexic gumby lady that will make you look dumpy? Be my guest. Me, I'll stick to the Lane Bryant model myself.

I get my mat all set up: my beach towel over my mat, my water behind me, small towel to wipe the pits when I start burning it up like Jane Fonda. I'm starting to sweat a little but I'm still not seeing how it's really going to be hot enough to burn as many calories as they claim. I'm a little concerned because naturally, I assumed that after this class I would wake up looking like a supermodel and everyone would ask me what my secret is, and then I'd laugh self-consciously and say, Oh, I guess it's just natural! I read The Secret. It could happen. Then, while I'm eavesdropping, someone asks the girl behind me if she's done this before and she's all like, "Oh my god, I love it!" Judging by the number of chins she's sporting, I'm guessing she likes the Sara Lee outlet better, but it doesn't instill much confidence in the weight loss claims of this here class.

The girl next to me strikes up a conversation and says, "So you've done this before I guess, for a while?" At first I have no idea why she would think this, especially the 'awhile' part, but I take a look at myself in the mirror and then I understand. I just got a new can of spray tan and I'd used it wisely this morning.  I'd sprayed on a few abs and heck, while I was at it, gave myself some biceps to boot. Dang, I am looking good.  I'm thinking dim lighting and glistening sweat is a look I could totally rock. As I start to fall just a little more in love with myself, class starts.

I think this would be easiest to describe using a timeline.

Minute 1: Okay, I have no idea what this lady is saying. One minute we're standing, the next minute she's talking super fast like a crack whore with a new crack spoon, saying something like, "Breathe deep and exhale going into a folding position right into half moon crane and then we are back up and exhale and inhale bring hands to blah blah blah blah blah." It really didn't matter what she was saying because I'm not getting any of it. I'm in a half crouch, not sure if I should be standing or squatting, so I end up bent over at the waist trying to 'relax my face' while trying to look between my knees to see what everyone else is doing. This is not off to a great start. And okay, I'm starting to sweat a little now.

Minute 30: I've got my arms twisted together and one leg crossed over the other, balancing on one foot. This can't really be a thing, can it? Did someone just bet one of their friends when they were drunk that they could get people to do the dumbest things you could think of under the guise of calling it 'exercise'? And the sweat is just pouring off of me now. Okay, no problem, I'll get my little towel and wipe down. Oh crap. My little towel is light blue. If I use that to wipe down, will I wipe off the fake tan that I sprayed on earlier and be all streaky and my towel will get all nasty? I debate whether I care or not but since fake tan ain't cheap, I figure I can suck it up for now. I know what you're thinking: what kind of dumbass puts on fake tan the same day as a hot yoga class? Apparently this dumbass.

Minute 45: We move into downward dog, a phrase I'm familiar with from, ahem, other activities that make you sweat. Oh my god, this is disgusting! As I'm bending over, the sweat is running down my face and over my lips! Do not throw up. Do NOT throw up. How is everyone else doing this? How the hell did I end up here again? The heat's making me lightheaded enough to feel a little high. Maybe this is how people get hooked?

Minute 60: Moving into the floor poses. I lay down and never want to get up again. Ever. I take a deep breath and the smell hits me like a wall. This must be what a jock strap smells like. Apparently all of our Lady Speedstick sweated off around minute 26 and although I didn't expect us to smell this bad, the only thing I relate this stench to is a week old bag of used hockey equipment left in the trunk during a heat wave.

We go through all of our exercises on our backs and now roll over onto our stomachs for the next phase. I know it's my own mat and towel, but I'm still grossed out having to touch that much of my body to it while I'm so sweaty. I try to relax. I really like this new fabric softener we're using. I'm starting to lose focus, but then we do the cobra pose, pushing up from our hands, and my arms look totally ripped! I immediately try to think of how I could casually assume this position while out in the real world so that everyone can appreciate the awesomeness of my arms but I'm coming up blank. I guess it's just gonna be me and Lane Bryant who are gonna get to soak up that view.

Minutes 80-90: We are lying quietly on our mats, eyes closed, and the instructor opens up the side door to let the heat out. But then it's quiet for like 5 minutes. Is this lady taking a smoke break or something? Is it Miller time?

Just as I start getting suspicious, she comes back in and has us sit up to do our last deep breaths. She tells us, I kid you not, to 'feel all the spaces between our muscles filling up'. With what, nougat? I mean, that's cool, you get to totally get to make stuff up and it sounds all yoga-like. It's like going to an apothecary or something.

She tells us to picture our energy connecting us to the earth and I'm visualizing this yellow thunderbolt going though my butt and spearing me into the ground like a shish-ka-bob. Okay, I don't get it, but I go with it. I actually really like the instructor. She isn't snotty at all or a drill sergeant type so I'm sticking with this lady. But I need a yoga-slang cheat sheet that I can tape to my mat next time to translate some of this lingo. I think she made up some new words for body parts and that info could come in handy.

I'm a little nauseous as I walk out, kind of like I'm either starting my period or getting a case of the runs. Luckily, neither happens on the way home but I'm so tired, I'm not sure I'd give a crap if I did crap myself. Maybe that's why those yoga people are so calm; they're too damn tired to do anything else.

 Overall, I kinda liked it. Regardless of whether I did or didn't like it, I've got 14 more sessions to use up. Anyone wanna join me? I swear, you'll look like Cindy Crawford! Promise! 


mary yates said...

wow-sounds totally awesome! where do I sign up? there's nothing I like more than the smell of jocks straps!

Anna said...

So that's why we saw you with your head in that guy's crotch the other weekend? That explains a LOT!I'll sign ya up!

Anonymous said...

you might want to fix the typos in minute 30, just sayin'

Anna said...

I know exactly who you are 'anonymous' so you may as well just sign in! Tard.

Anonymous said...

I don't mean to be a squealer, but you still have one! Who's the Tard?

Anna said...

Still you.

Anonymous said...

"I swear, you'll look like Cindy Crawford! Promise!"

I won't fall for that.. AGAIN

Anonymous said...

For now on, I'm goin gto feel free to crap and/or vomit myself...and just blame it all on Hot Yoga! I'm sure everyone in line at the super market will TOTALY understand.