From time to time, my roommate comes home drenched in sweat, a carton of coconut water in hand. I usually greet her from the couch, a carton of Cheez-Its in hand.
But not today. Today I decided to be the hot yogi of the house. For the first time ever, I tried hot yoga.
Now, full disclaimer, this wasn’t actually my first yoga class ever. My work offers free yoga classes, which I attend a couple times a week (on good weeks, when the stars are aligned). BUT, this was my first yoga class in a 90 degree room, which is quite a different experience.
Since I live in Plaza Midwood, I decided to walk a mile or so to Yoga One, centrally located on Central Avenue. (Okay, so I drove there. Whatever.)
I signed up ahead of time for the $5 Karma class because, duh, that’s an incredible deal. I didn’t realize this when I signed up, but our teacher, Liz Smolin, said the profits from the Karma classes go to charity.
I’m not going to pretend it wasn’t intimidating to walk into this class of about 40 people ― at least as a newcomer. I usually do yoga with four to five coworkers in a spacious, heavily air-conditioned room. As soon as we started chanting “om,” I started wondering if I was in the wrong place. I didn’t feel very “om,” I felt very “sweaty.”
But as soon as we started flowing, I started feeling it. I quickly realized why my roommate offered to let me borrow her yoga towel ― SO MUCH SWEAT. And I wasn’t even the sweatiest. The teacher placed a few extra towels on the ground near a couple yogis to soak up their pouring “glisten,” as she called it. It was sticky, it was smelly, and it was, exciting? I couldn’t understand how everyone around me was striking poses so seamlessly, like yoga gods and goddesses disguised as real people, strolling our Charlotte streets in lulu.
After the class, I talked to the woman sitting beside me, Desiree Kube, and asked how often she comes to yoga. For every time I was catching my breath in child’s pose, she had a least one leg in the air, so I figured it wasn’t her first day. I was right. She said she does yoga every single day. When I asked her about it, she said that it helps her relieve tension. “Nothing can change how I feel after,” she said.
And, I have to admit, I did feel a little different for the rest of my day. I felt a little more energized. I stood a tiny bit taller. I even ate not-fried sushi for dinner (with a small Cheez-Its appetizer at home, of course). You know, just being healthy and stuff.