Sunday, June 22, 2008

Day Four -- The Challenge Begins

2:30 pm class with Libby.

Before class, I had some thoughts about asanas, concentration and meditation.  The class trumped my plans.  There was no chance for meditation:  Instead, it was an exercise in  suffering through the heat.  A few factors combined to get this result:

1) The 2:30 class time is really bad.  I can't have a decent meal beforehand, so start with less energy.  On top of that, I think mid-afternoon is a natural low point for me.  It's nap time.  And its also peak sun and humidity time.

2)  There were 41 people in the room.  I came a bit late and got a spot on the hot side.  The people just adds to the humidity and to the heat.  Libby kept turning the heat down, and it kept getting hotter just from the body heat.  Also, at one point she went to lower the humidity control, only to discover that the humidifier was already off.

3) I didn't have much food last night, and didn't sleep well.  But I felt good before class.  So I didn't anticipate that being a problem.

4) It was the fifth day in a row, my longest number of consecutive days so far -- though I'd rather not contemplate that as a major factor, because it doesn't bode well..  And:

5) I messed up hydration.  About halfway through class, I felt like I might have to pee.  This is especially troubling in the back strengthening series.

Anyway, by Awkward Pose (the second posture), I already felt exhausted.  I bailed out on the second set of triangle.  My pulse wasn't that high, and I wasn't feeling any aerobic load.  Instead, it felt like there wasn't enough air in the room.  I think that's the humidity and the number of people, but I'm not entirely sure.

By Savasana, my skin started to feel like it was burning.  And the sensation didn't stop for the rest of class.  Half locust was back to being a joke:  I flopped on the third part of the second set.  I even felt like I might have to sit out of Half Tortoise, which is a relaxation pose.  I made a respectable Camel and Rabbit, which was a minor triumph, but then sort of collapsed, which made Libby laugh at me, commenting "No histrionics, please."  

I got to final savasana, and cut it shorter than I ever had.  My skin still burned.  On the plus side, after class a number of people commented on how hot it felt.  Sometimes its nice to know that you aren't the only one (even if it turned out that you were the most demonstrative).

On the plus side, I weighed in at 222 after class.  That's down 38 lbs. since I started Bikram, without any dieting.  Of course, its sort of a false measurement.  I was down 5 pounds since before class, and that includes the two liters of water I drank before weighing myself the second time.  So, I lost maybe 8 pounds of sweat during class.  That's probably close to a record for me.  And that proves that whatever the thermometer said, it was HOT.


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