Important safety tip: when standing in front of the thermostat, just ignore it. When I put my mat down, just in front of the podium, I noticed the temperature was about 97. I got myself set mentally, I suppose, for a cooler class. By the end of awkward pose, it had climbed to 105 -- still no big deal. Then it continued to climb through the standing series. Worse, I couldn't help but notice after each pose. And I also let it get to me. By the end of Triangle it had hit 112, and that's when I decided to try not to look anymore.
Anyway, the heat knocked the hell out of me in standing series. I missed only one set of Triangle, and I had a nice standing series. But I felt wiped out by the end of it. The heat lowered throughout the floor series, but it didn't matter to me: I was already cooked. My pulse was absolutely racing in the back strengthening series, and I even had to sit out a set of bow. Actually, I set up for it, and then just couldn't bring myself to kick when Sherry called to kick.
I got some better control over myself after that, but came out of second set of Camel early, and also second set of Rabbit. It was a hard class, and I felt totally drained afterward. I think the main problem was paying too much attention to the thermometer. I've been in hotter classes before, but I don't think I've been in too many classes that messed with my mind as much.
And this makes me wonder if I'm really getting so prissy about class conditions? One day I'm quibbling about timing, which shouldn't bother me at all. The very next day, it's temperature control. At least, on Friday I didn't resent the temperature swing. Instead, I allowed the starting temperature to set an expectation, and then I let the change mess with what I had anticipated. So, I got thrown for a loop. But on another level, getting thrown for a loop was OK with me. And I take that as at least a bit of progress.
The day 155 meditation opens with a quote from one of Gates' students. The meditation itself mostly praises the student and talks about how the student has incorporated what he has learned into his life. The student's quote is interesting and encouraging. It confirms several the things.
First, he talks about how yoga is not based on faith but on experience. I think what he is getting at here is that yoga is, first and foremost, a practical discipline. Some disciplines ask for faith up front, and then promise some payoff later on. Yoga asks simply that you try something. You don't have to believe in the results when you start to try. The results themselves then help build up further faith in the practice.
Then he talks about how the postures teach you not simply how to release strength, but they also give you a kind of tour guide through stress. They allow you to observe, listen, and learn what's going on in your body -- to confront, experience, understand, and ultimately let go of stress and blockages. I've seen this happen some, but for me its still a work in progress. But, going back to the first point, I have faith that I will improve in this personal observation and improve in the ability to let go of stress and blockages. And this faith is based on the results I've already seen.