After my second hot yoga session this week, I’m beginning to have some doubts. The room yesterday was SO HOT. I would bet my right leg (notice I’m only offering up the temperamental one) that the temp was closer to 110 degrees than to 105. Also, the weather outside was more humid than it was the first time, which only made the studio more humid as well. I felt dizzy and lightheaded much more often, and the sweat situation was even more extreme (which I promise you, I didn’t think was possible).
I got a headache about half way through in my left temple, which I guarantee was from dehydration. It lingered until nearly dinner time. After class I promptly got myself a gatorade and drank water religiously the rest of the day. Sidenote: Those last 8 miles of my marathon made me a HUGE believer in electrolyte drinks. I think that little bottle of gatorade I got at the first aid station was responsible for my physical ability to finish. Anyway, it took me a few hours just to rehydrate.
Another thing that’s bugging me is that I’m not sure I like the set-in-stone 26 pose sequence (pictured above). First off, there isn’t even one downward dog in the whole lineup! Now, I realize that there are lots of different ways to do yoga, but I did a fair amount of yoga in college and every class had at least one or two downward dog poses. I’ve grown to like this pose and I didn’t when I first started, so now I feel cheated when I complete a class and didn’t do it. Additionally, there are a handful of other poses I like (the names of which I have no idea) that I know are out there and it makes me sad to know that I will never do those if I stick with a strict Bikram studio.
To look on the bright side, I admit that when I paid attention to my breath and my pulse, both indicated that I was working hard. Since this is exactly what I wanted to get out of hot yoga in the first place, I really shouldn’t complain. One of the worst aspects of taking a break from running is the idea of watching my cardiovascular fitness slowly decline, and I am determined not to let that happen to any major extent. For the moment, Bikram is aiding in maintaining my fitness.
Yesterday, I spoke with Lina after she texted me that she ran her first pain-free mile after the marathon (yay yay yay!), and she had the brilliant idea that maybe each of us should look into seeing a sports medicine doctor to help us with our respective running problems. Both of us are particularly concerned with picking out appropriate shoes for this upcoming training cycle, and having a doctor analyze our gaits seems more legit than someone at a shoe store without a medical degree. I’m allowed to say that because my first job was at a running shoe store!
I made a doctor’s appointment for June 3rd. This will be only 2 short days after Lina, Nick, and I run the Philadelphia Tough Mudder, so I’m anticipating having a lot to talk about. I’m worried about the Tough Mudder because I won’t be able to wear a brace and the total race distance is around 12 miles, but I’m hoping for the best. I convinced Lina and Nick to run it with me because I did it last year and had a TOTAL BLAST, despite doing it alone. Barring any physical problems, it’s going to be awesome.
And now, for the smoothies. As part of my graduation gift, my mom bought me a new blender and after seeing all kinds of hype about green smoothies, I decided to do some hands-on research. I’ve come up with two recipes I really love so far. The thing to keep in mind about smoothies is that they can be infinitely tweaked to fit your tastes. I tend to not like things too sweet, so if you try one of these recipes and think it could use more fruit or honey (or whatever), alter away! Next week I plan to experiment with additives like chia seeds, flax, and nuts, so stay tuned.
1 c coconut water
3/4 c frozen mango chunks
1/2 c plain greek yogurt
2 c fresh spinach
juice from 1/2 a lemon
honey, to taste
1 c coconut water
1 c frozen pineapple chunks
2 c fresh spinach
juice from 1 lemon
1 cube frozen, chopped basil (Dorot brand available in frozen section at Trader Joe’s)
For both, combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until well pureed or liquified. Enjoy!