Week One Recap: Bikram Yoga Teacher Training in Thailand

image

Aaahh beautiful Thailand.  Week one of Bikram Yoga Teacher has taught me more about me than what  a year of regular living ever could. The week has had its challenges and successes, both small and large. A few things that stood out includes:

1. “THE BOSS” Calling Me Out In Front of Yoga Class.

Bikram Choudhary, The Boss, guru and founder of the rightly named Bikram Yoga phenomenon is a very hard man to please. He is not afraid to curse you out, call you ugly, and  insult your mother all while wearing a smug smile on his face. So in the hot yoga room, I’ve struggled with getting my hips to touch the floor in Fixed Firm pose. On day three in the evening class taught by Bikram, he noticed me struggling to follow his instructions to sit my butt down on the floor. In front of 332 fellow yogi trainees, he called me out, barking orders for me to spread my knees apart, tuck my feet in, and go down. Embarrased, I instantly followed his orders and miraculously accomplished the posture. It only took 18 months of practicing yoga and a stern push by Bikram himself for me to achieve such feat. I’m thankful that he called me out.

2.  Scary Cramping In My Fingers and Toes.

I have never in my life experienced such agressive cramping in which I experienced on day two. I like to nickname it “the claw” because my fingers uncontrollably took on the shape of a claw mencanically moving in and out beyond my control.  The pain would last for what seemed like eternity but was merely a few seconds at a time. This stopped and started again and again a good 24 hrs during yoga class and after. Why did this happen? Apparently all the vitamins and minerals my body needs to function is lost thru the excessive sweating during yoga class. Not to mention class number one lasted 2.5 hours!! Bikram was on a mission to break us down physically and mentally.  Thankfully, with ample dosage of magnesium,  potassium and sea salt, the cramping has long ceased.

3. Pesky Itchy Mosquito Bite

Dumb mosquito flew into my room in the middle of night two and bit me on the inside of my left ring finger making it impossible for me to hold a nice tight grip during many of the standing poses. Not to mention it itched like crazy for 3-4 days after. Long week nights lasting past 12 midnight in lecture felt like torture. Since the bite occurred,  I’ve been spraying on my DEET daily to keep the mosquitoes away. Lesson learned the hard way!

4. “THE BOSS” Grading My Delivery of Half Moon Pose Favorably.

In his words: “You didn’t just say the dialogue, you became a teacher. “

When he said those words to me right after I delivered Half Moon Pose on stage in front of 332 of my fellow yogi trainees,  in that moment I knew this is  where I am supposed to be. All doubts and fears  removed.

5. Soaking in the Beauty of Thailand

After 5 days straight of a grueling 8am to midnight schedule filled with lectures and ten sessions of Bikram yoga clases totaling a whopping 20 hours in the hot yoga room heated to 105 degrees + 96% humidity which easily makes it feel like hell on earth,  Our. Bodies. Deserved. A.Break. ….Beaches, pools, massage, shopping. All much appreciated.

image

Now that we are rejuevenated, bring on week two! I’m ready to conquer all fears and “trust the process” as Bikram likes to say. 

Namaste.

How to Love Yourself

Subscribe Button

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size

But when I start to tell them,

They think I’m telling lies.

I say,

It’s in the reach of my arms,

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

The curl of my lips.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

Phenomenal Woman is one of my favorite poems ever.  I can listen to the words for hours on end.  Renowned poet, Maya Angelou gives women everywhere an intoxicating lesson on the beauty, power and awesomeness in which we possess.  If you are unfamiliar then you MUST read the whole poem, it’s quite inspiring.

I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.

We women are powerful beyond belief.  Who else has the aura, softness and amazing grace to bring a man to his knees simply by walking into a room?  Sadly, many women are unaware of the strength, beauty and charm we possess.  Instead, we stay worried about belly pudge, acne, and crooked toes.  Women obsess about small imperfections when all a man notices is the beauty of the feminine body.

Valentine’s day is around the corner which means either one of two things:

1. If you are in a relationship you may get showered with chocolate, flowers and if your man really loves you — diamonds.

2. If you are single, your mind will be on overdrive wondering how you managed to end up dateless on yet another valentines day.

But single ladies everywhere, you must must must change this self-deprecating way of thinking — the health, success and longevity of any future relationship you will have depends on it.  Being single on valentines day is not the end of the world.   I have NEVER had a valentines day date in all of my 28 years on this planet.  But I am not bitter.  When February 14 rolls around, I can enjoy it just like the drunk-in-love couples that smother the streets everywhere like a plate of home cooked chicken and collard greens — why oh why must the juice greens get all over my chicken errghhhh.  But I digress…

I-Love-Me-44118211

…this Valentines Day, you must practice self-love. What is self-love you ask?  How can self-love add to your beauty, strength and grace?  How do you truly enjoy a dateless v-day?  All these questions and more are answered in this short video I put together with my dear friend Mourhia.  Take a moment to watch.

And remember, whether you are single or in a relationship, let February 14th be a fun, cheerful day.  Afterall, it’s on a Friday.