You knew this post was eventually coming, and I forewarned you that I was going to write about other things outside of politics. So, without further adieu, I present to you the first into my series focusing on fitness.
With health care costs increasing significantly every year and with obesity rates at 36%, exercise is the best preventative medicine around (along with eating right…but I’m not going to go all Michelle Obama on this post). It gives you energy and for the most part, it provides focus and clarity.
Today, I ventured into a Bikram Yoga class. It was not my first time encountering a 104 degree room and holding poses. I had been before, but I was not thoroughly convinced that it would be the perfect alternative to running. However, after today’s class, I feel this could be an alternative.
Bikram Yoga has many benefits including increased flexibility through intense stretching, and allows the ability to sweat out the toxins. Of course, you need to drink lots of water before, during, and after practice to remain hydrated due to the excessive amount of sweat loss.
Running has caused a few injuries along the way, and lately, I have been feeling frustrated by the fact that I am in pain a few hours after a long run. It is great cardio, and one that has contributed to my overall weight loss. From being overweight in high school, I bought my first pair of running shoes during my freshman year in college, and the first run was painful. Needless to say, I have been running strong over the years with several races under my belt (a 5-K, 8-K, 10-K, and a 10 miler), and a goal to run a half marathon this year.
However, I need balance. I tried CrossFit, but I feel like that it is taking away from my overall flexibility. Yes, I like weight lifting, but I really don’t need to add muscle mass or bulk to my petite frame. Yoga feels like a natural complement to running. I just feel flexible and peaceful after class, which is a good thing.
In the end, if you can take the heat and are willing to embrace your inner self through the practice, you should definitely try Bikram Yoga (or another form, if you are not a big fan of the heat). The health benefits are tremendous, and there is no doubt that you will leave with a peaceful feeling at the end of practice.