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Failure?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

emoticon Ok, so I realize that I'm the type of person that sets out to do a particular exercise and I fully expect to do it - maybe a bit half-assed if it's really hard, but I do it. This afternoon I did something that I had really been looking forward to - Bikram Yoga. Hot yoga...whose bright idea was this? Take a challenging yoga routine and oh, do it in 105 degree temperatures. Brilliant! I figure hey...I have one of those sauna thingies taking up half my dining room and I do that in 115 degrees! Surely this yoga thing will be ok...challenging, but ok. No. Not so much.

I've recently been getting into yoga in general and what little I've done, I have really enjoyed. I find it challenging, and it pushes me beyond my comfort zone, yet I can still keep up with the practices, even if how I do it isn't perfect. I dress for this class in a pair of bike shorts and a baggy t-shirt. Safe, right? Wrong. Everyone else in the class is wearing the equivalent of a bikini. Then again, not everyone in the class was almost 300 pounds. I set up my mat and towel and lay down in savasana pose (my favorite - all you have to do is just lay down consciously...yeah!) It's hot, but tolerable. I kid myself, "this won't be so bad, it's not SO hot!" We get started...I'm playing along for the first few poses, you know, going all out. Then comes this crazy balance on one leg while your other leg is straight out at hip level. Uh...what? What are we, storks or something? emoticon

So I half-ass that one and keep going. I'm struggling...I'm feeling hotter and getting a little pant-y. This is not going so well. I'm getting pretty woozy when I notice that someone has sat down across the room. Oh? So then the chunky chick wouldn't be the only one sitting down? I guess I could swing that. Overall, I missed probably a third of the 26 poses in the 90 minute routine. I guess I'm happy I stayed in there until the end, but it was such an unsatisfied feeling I was carrying with me. I realize of course that 1) this is a hard, intense workout, and 2) it is a super duper triple dog hard, intense workout for someone of my size. That still doesn't settle my mind that I didn't really 'complete' what I set out to do, which was to at least try everything once. It isn't my nature to not accomplish what I give myself to do physically.

emoticonI amble to my flip-flops and somehow make it to my car just in time to let the tears flow. I just cried for a while. I cried for what I did accomplish, and for what I didn't accomplish. And I really cried about the reason I wasn't able to accomplish all that I set out to do.... my fat. Not my weight, weight is a number. Fat is what is in front of you, preventing you from leaning all the way forward. It prevents you from crossing your legs in some sort of weird yoga pretzel-y way. It wears your knees down so you can't sit in half of the yoga sitting positions. It makes your arms go further out because you can't put them smoothly down by your sides because your sides are a blob instead of a feminine curve. I realized today that I can't do all things, even when I set my mind to it, as long as the large expanse I call my fat hangs around.

Needless to say, I won't be giving Bikram another shot for a while. I need to part ways with some more fat first. What I did however, was come face to face with my real limitations. For a long time I've told myself "I'm flexible, I'm not limited by my size because I'm athletic, I'm not so fat that I can't do whatever I want". Wrong. I went all out and I didn't even close enough to the edge to look down. I'm going to remember this feeling for a long time, and I'm going to do everything in my power to fix the problem and not let let this happen again. Failure? For today, in my head, yes. For tomorrow and beyond? No, because I will fix the troubles of today. Until then... emoticon
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • LAKAISER
    This blog was very inspiring to me thanks for posting.

    Lucretia
    4777 days ago
  • KIMBERLYD552002
    Hey .. You did awesome!!! You took a risk to see if you can do it. You amaze me.. Not many people would do that. I would have turned and left when I saw all those girls it basically bikinis!!! I mean that was awesome for you to try.. You watch you will meet your goal and you will go and do it again and feel awesome about it.. You are an amazing person... you can do this...
    4777 days ago
  • FEELING_IT
    There's no shame in not being able to do something the first time you try it! I know several quite skinny people who've had a hard time doing bikram yoga - the heat is just a killer. You set out to try it, and you did the best your body would allow, which is definitely not a failure in my book. As hard as you're working, you'll certainly get there soon enough, and it'll be even more awesome an accomplishment.
    4778 days ago
  • RENSTWIN
    Yeah, what she said! I think it extremely brave for you to even go in the class. Please don't let this experience hold you back! You definitely should go back, as soon as you can!

    And anytime that you get frustrated about this program, then you should come back and read this blog entry...that is what I am going to do!

    Thank you for such a funny, motivating, thought provoking entry!
    4778 days ago
  • MARGO1966
    I'm proud of you for trying it!!

    I started yoga when I weighed about 260. It's humbling, to say the least, to find that your body just can't do some of the things you think it should. STICK WITH IT! I had some amazing compliments from others in the class a few months later, about how flexible I'd become, etc. What floored me was when a skinny little marathon runner told me she was jealous of my flexibility. Huh?? LOL Once I realized she was dead-serious, I was on cloud nine for days afterward!

    Give yourself a goal of doing the bikram class again in 3 months, and then keep going with the other forms of yoga. Make sure you're hydrating enough after each session. Enjoy the feeling in your muscles the next day, of strength and purpose - just that sudden awareness of the individual muscles in your body and how they work.

    You're off to a great start! Don't kick yourself for needing to take baby steps!
    4778 days ago
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