Classes 89, 90, 91, 92, 93 (+6 advanced)
Teacher Michelle, Raj, Stephen, Sanjai, Andrew
Who’s afraid of the Big bad yoga truck, who’s afraid of the big bad yoga truck? Okay I know I’ll have to eat those words tomorrow. But today was just amazing. For those who don’t know I did a challenge to raise money for sport relief (please sponsor us) today, 5 Bikram yoga classes in one day. That’s a total of 7.5 hours spent in a room heated to +40C and 130 postures. Now to be fair I had to sit out some set of postures so I probably did more like 110-115 postures. There was only two of us doing it at Fulham, me and Katie. I’ve been told some people were told beforehand that the challenge would only happen at the sister studio so there was a lot more people doing it there. Not that I minded, it was nice to just be a small group.
Michelle came in and rocked the morning class. Nice hot class (the morning class is normally cooler) and I started in the front row. Why shy away from the pressure? A perfect way to start the day. After class there was a nice 2 hour break before the next class so we went and had a splendid breakfast at a local bakery. Michelle and Jason (who works at the studio) came along for the breakfast. After Michelle stayed and took the second class with us.
Raj put us through our paces in his usual high energy style in another really hot class. I love Raj’s “Is it going to be tough? Damn right it’s going to be tough” comment through out class. I’d decided I was going to move back one row each class so I wouldn’t be in the front row if I needed to just sit out just about everything. So second class, second row.
For the third class we had Stephen who is a visiting teacher just down for the weekend from Scotland. If you’re catching up on the theme here it was another scorching class. By this point I was wondering how I’d be able to keep on top of my hydration if we continued down this path. Stephen also delivered a very high energy class, with rapid dialogue (think Bikram going full dialogue) in a scottish accent. I really enjoyed it but felt slightly bad for the first timers. Then again there is no way they’d keep up with the normal dialogue anyway so maybe they were no worse off.
After the Midday class we had a nice 3.5 hour break before the next class so we went for lunch. Teachers Jo and Stephen came along and so did a friend of Stephen. Loads more yoga dorking out and random Bikram quotes. Needless to say I loved it. We had vietnamese at a place I’ve never tried before close to the studio and it was just wonderful. I’ll have to frequent it more often. After the vietnamese everyone else left but we decided we were still hungry (and we still had an hour left) so we went for miso soup and sushi.
Candle lit class with Sanjai. Normally I love this class and will go when ever I can get away from work in time. But today this class was just painful. My standing series was absolutely horrendous but luckily I came back on the field in the floor series. The standing series in this class was where I missed most of my sets. I only did two sets of about half the postures, the other half was one setters. I just wasn’t sure if it was the candles flickering or if I was close to passing out but everything kept moving, so I went for safety and sat down.
With just 15 min break before this class the start was always going to be a bit of a struggle. Up until party time my internal dialogue was pretty much:
– Let’s sit this set out
– Are you kidding me? You do not sit out the warm up postures
– Okay let’s drink some water then
– Just because you’re on class five today doesn’t mean your except from the no water until party time rule
– But I’m already warmed up it wouldn’t be that bad
-And what kind of example would you set to the beginners next to you?
Repeat for greater effect. However as soon as I got my water fix at party time the class just came to me. It was a brilliant class, definitely the strongest of the entire day. I even got a “good posture Johan” comment from the teacher in second set Rabbit. That just made me so happy. You don’t exactly expect that comment 7h 15min into your days yoga practice. I also noticed in the savasanas my breathing was deep in the belly even without me having to think about it. I’m sure that helped.
I can’t remember who it was (most likely Sanjai) said in class: “Take the time to appreciate this here now. You will never be here again, even if you come back tomorrow it will not be the same practice or even the same you”. It sounded extra true considering I’ll most likely never be in class 4 or 5 in a day again. And yes, even if I found myself in that situation it sure wouldn’t be the same me.
I came out of the last class really fancying going straight back in and doing an advanced class, or at least another normal class. I was just walking on air. I guess Bikram has a point there about levitation being just another form of Self-realization. I can’t think of a more intense way of proving your own worth to yourself then this marathon session.
The challenge for tomorrow is not to let it get to my head. But I’m sure stiff muscles and aching joints will help greatly with that.
Finally I just wanted to say thank you to all the wonderful people who wished us good luck or donated money today. Your support was really felt and appreciated!