Baby's First Bikram

Good morning! It is strange to be up at such a ghastly hour, but I start my new internship today.  I didn’t blog last night because Ari and I went to a Bikram yoga night class, and got home late and exhausted.

Yesterday, I met my friend Kalle for lunch at Hummus Place. We each got the special, which comes with one appetizer (we both got falafel) and a choice of hummus for $7.95.

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We split the fava bean hummus (which also comes with a hard-boiled egg):

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And the traditional Masabacha, with chick peas.

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We chose whole wheat pita:

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And made about 1000 of these little sandwiches.

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I ended up eating three falafel balls and one pita, plus a lot of forkfuls of hummus.

A Kalle-date is not complete without a tasty treat.  We went to Tasti D-Lite (which has now been re-named and called The Lite Choice, but I’m boycotting that change) and I got a small cup with chocolate espresso, vanilla, and peanut butter chips.

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Perfection.

Coincidentally, Ari and I have both recently become interested in Bikram (Hot) Yoga, and decided to go to an 8:15 class last night.  I’d never done it before, so I really didn’t know what to expect.  I figured eating a big meal right before probably wasn’t a good idea, so I had an apple with peanut butter around 8:15.

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Many bloggers, including Gliding Calm, have been touting Bikram’s wonders of late.

Ari had practiced hot yoga a couple times before, and said that a lot of people get nauseous and/ or want to pass out.  When we got to class, the instructor told us that for beginners, our goal for the day was not to do the poses but just to stay in the room for the full 90 minutes.  I was sweating and had to step outside the room before class even started, which was not a good sign!

About five minutes into class, I was immediately streaming sweat from every inch of my body.  Considering that I’m self-conscious even going without makeup in public, this was quite a “test” to see how comfortable I am in my relationship!  I finally got over the sweating part and just relaxed, focusing on the poses.  I didn’t have to sit down and take a break once, and was able to do almost every pose (even the most advanced)! I’ve heard that people only think they’re more flexible in intense heat and can cause damage to their joints, but I felt great. I think I may have finally found my true exercise fit!

I chugged a coconut water after class:

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About Bikram (from Wikipedia):

Bikram or hot or fire yoga is a series of yoga poses done in a heated room, which is usually maintained at a temperature of 105 degrees Fahrenheit (approximately 40 degrees Celsius). A vigorous yoga session at this temperature promotes profuse sweating, which is to rid the body of toxins. It also makes the body very warm, and therefore more flexible.[5]

Bikram yoga is a system of wellness, restoration and rejuvenation. The heated studio facilitates deeper stretching, prevents injury, relieves stress and tension and detoxifies the body. Bikram yoga was designed to systematically stimulate and restore health to every muscle, joint and organ of the body. Participants are guided through a series of 26 postures. The heart, lungs, blood circulation, muscles, brain activity and mental capacity are all affected by participating in the art of yoga. There are two descriptions of the 26 exercises and they are asanas (postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises), both of which rely on each other to deliver positive results. According to Bikram, many people only use up to 50 percent of their lung capacity, and just like any muscle, the lungs must be stretched and with time will be able to withstand holding more oxygen. When one is practicing the pranayama he or she will eventually be able to enhance oxygen conversion and absorption, as well as improve blood circulation. (Choudhury, 2007)

It is common for beginners to experience dizziness and nausea. Beginners may feel faint or pass out. It is encouraged to take breaks as needed if a participant is feeling lightheaded. (Advisement brochure at Bikram Yoga, Glen Allen, Virginia)

Blood circulation is affected immensely during Bikram Yoga, because of two processes called Extension and Compression. These two dynamics work together to deliver fresh oxygen to every joint, muscle, and organ within the human body. While performing a specific asana, the body is stretching or compressing a certain part of the body; thus, cutting off circulation temporarily. This restriction of circulation causes the heart to pump more blood in the reaction of the shortage. The pumping of excess, fresh blood is called extension. Once the asana is complete, and the individual comes out of the posture, then the new oxygenated blood is able to rejuvenate the arteries that were being compressed. It is said that because of the volume change and influx of fresh blood, any infection, bacteria, or toxin can be released.(Choudhury, 2007)

I was freezing when I got home (my friend Kalle reminded me that it’s important to wear layers… only sopping wet layers don’t help so much!) and although I didn’t feel hungry, I knew I needed to hydrate and restore my calorie deficit. I made a big salad:

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  • romaine
  • tofu w/ s&p
  • 2 leftover falafel balls
  • leftover chickpea hummus from Hummus Palace
  • tomatoes
  • hot salsa
  • Annie’s Lite Gingerly vinaigrette

Needless to say, I didn’t have a hard time sleeping last night.

Because I’m getting up earlier and I don’t know what the lunch situation today will be (I’m going to try and pack something fast), I made Jim a little larger than usual:

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  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 coop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 big banana
  • 1 big scoop black raspberry preserves
  • 1 T peanut butter
  • cinnamon
  • apricot eyes (tried this last night, Pearl!)/ Brazil nut nose/ raisin&craisin smile

Well kiddies, I’m off to fix my ‘do and hustle on over to the workplace.  Have a fabulous humpday!

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12 responses to “Baby's First Bikram

  1. Three things:

    1. Good luck with your first day!
    2. That hummus place looks OUT of this world. Falafel, hummus…. drooool.
    3. Despite practicing hot power yoga for several years, I’ve never actually tried Bikram. Sounds like you had a good first time experience, though!

  2. bikram is the bomb!!!!! so glad you enjoyed it!! it is def. my exercise firt too!! all the cardio without the bore!!

    thanks so much for the shout out K!

    haha they sold coconut water at my studio too!!

    and yes, im not sure if I could bring a boyfriend. I’d be like ummm okay your mat goes on the complete OPPOSITE end of the room! DON’T LOOK AT ME! ha

    happy wednesday loverrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  3. wow! bikram sounds INTENSE but amazing — so glad you not only enjoyed it but dominated it! thats awesome.

    the hummus + falafel got me wanting it right now — and its only 8:36 am! ha!

    hope the internship goes well! =)

  4. I drove by a hummus place in NY last week. I wanted to go so much!

    Ari rocks for doing the yoga. I am so glad you liked Bikram!!!! Good luck today!!!!!!!!

  5. Good luck with your internship!

    I’ve always wanted to try Bikram … I’m glad that you liked it!

    Um, I had no idea that Tasti D-Lite and The Lite Choice were one and the same! (Not that I patronize either of them, but you’d think it’s something I would know. ;))

    ❤ ❤

  6. Get out of here with the hummus, falafel, pita, and Tasti!! I’m so jealous that my area of Dtown sucks when it comes to offering those delicious eats!

    Glad you guys had a good yoga session!! Hope your internship goes well today – GOOD LUCK 🙂

    PS. Deutschland? Take me with you! I speak Deutsch – I can be your translator!

  7. Good luck today!

    I’ve been really interested in Bikram- it sounds great (and perfect for someone as unflexible as me!) I haven’t found a class here but plan on doing it in NY when I come. Glad you enjoyed it!

    LOVE felafel- I’ve never had it at a restaurant but have it at home a lot. Such great stuff (and you have now added another restaurant to my list!) Have you ever been to Nanoosh?

  8. I’ve been wanting to try bikram for too long now! It would be awesome if I could get the hubs to go too; somehow I don’t think he would be as up for it :/

  9. Okay, The Hummus Place looks AWESOME and follow that up with FroYo?! SIGN ME UP! 😀

    I still have yet to try Bikram Yoga too! However, I have tried Bikram spinning…actually, the fans were simply not working and it was really hot! pahha

  10. jim looks happy to be larger!! hee hee hee!!
    man…hummus and falafel in pita? yum! PLUS froyo afterwards! your belly is singing hallelujah!

  11. Ahh, you’ve almost re-created my fave way to eat falafel balls! Whenever my family and I go to our favorite vegetarian place, we always order a plate of nachos…and then I get a bunch of sides so that I can make my own little masterpiece! I throw hummus, falafel, avocado/guacamole AND salsa (super spicy) into mini pita triangles, over and over again…..yum!

    Glad you enjoyed hot yoga, I still need to try it!

  12. hummus place!!!!!!!!!!!! amor amor amor.

    we need to schedule a date asap (ok, i guess once youre back from berlin, and im back from hawaii).

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