Holly – I finished my 30 day challenge last night !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Soooo, I have a few things I would like to share:
- First and foremost – THANK YOU HOLL !!! You have a beautiful studio with an amazing staff, what a blessing to all your students. I am so grateful I have the opportunity to practice at your studio.
- I have to give a huge shout out to all your teachers, even single one has inspired me in one way or another. Bill – what can’t I say about Bill. He is bigger than life, has lots of love for teaching Bikram and it shows. Lorena – she is a master/teacher with amazing experience. She has taught me so much, I truly respect and adore her. Laura – amazing, amazing, amazing! Laura is beautiful inside and out, she is a master in Bikram and yet she is full of love and a TRUE INSPIRATION.
Although I only referenced the above teachers I have so much respect and love for every single one of the teachers who have taught at your studio (Lanette, Kristie, NaomI, Martin – all of them).
In closing I would like to share with you all that Bikram has brought into my life.
Here you go:
GRATITUDE, GRATITUDE, GRATITUDE
HEALED KNEES, JOINTS – ENTIRE BODY
RELEASE FROM SINUS HEADACHES
AMAZING SLEEP HAS RETURNED
HORMONES ARE BALANCED
I ACTUALLY HAVE A WAIST (BELIEVE IT OR NOT)
ABILITY TO RELEASE STRESS
RELEASE FROM MANY MANY THINGS WHICH WERE TOXIC TO MY BODY
With results like the above my love for Bikram has grown and I now consider myself a lifelong Bikram student.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you my friend!
Holly, I don’t think you have any idea how much your class & your teachers (including you) have transformed my life. I have struggled for years with my confidence in my body & myself. I am still very much a work in progress, but I am by far in the best condition, body & mind, as I enter my 30s, than I have ever been! I very much attribute that to all of you. Thank you for providing me with a practice that has proven (to me) my strength & my persistence & has taught me that it is completely acceptable to value myself, in order to be valuable to others. XOXO
By Jay Jay Lee
Since the age of five, I have been active in sports; from basketball to cheerleading, from running track to lifting weights, and even though my eating habits were poor, I never weighed over 140 lbs at 5’6” and that was when I was nine months pregnant at the age of twenty-four. Having weighed 115 lbs in high school, I could eat anything I wanted and never gain an ounce. I must have heard, “Just wait until you turn forty,” over a thousand times in my life. But, as most people do when not in the valley, I ignored it and kept eating the same way.
Forty hit, and as predicted, so did the weight. It hit with a vengeance, ten pounds a year to be exact, until I reached 170. Many times over the years I dieted and exercised and tried to lose the weight, but nothing seemed to work. Three months ago I decided to try the HCG Diet and lost twenty-five pounds and felt better than I have in years. However, I gained five pounds back within a month and knew I had to get an exercise program that I would stick with and quick.
A friend of mine told me something she was doing called “Hot Yoga” and I seriously thought to myself, “Are you kidding me?” I mean, everyone always said yoga was supposed to be relaxing! I had tried yoga one time before and it was HARD! Even though I was a cheerleader in school for six years, I never considered myself very limber and flexible. So, when trying to bend and move in ways that just doesn’t seem natural, and then HOLD it for extended periods of time… at my age? NO. THANK. YOU. And on top of that, do in a room at 105 degrees??? Are these people crazy??? So, I never gave it another thought!
Til’ two weeks later another friend mentioned to me she was going to “Bikram Yoga” in Katy. I asked her if it was the same thing as “Hot Yoga” and she said yes. She said she loved it. As a Christian, I knew that was a confirmation to an answered prayer, so I sayd, “Okay God!” and went.
Well, let me tell you, that was the longest 90 minutes of my life! I was a bit worried someone was going to have to perform CPR on this ole gal! I was in the room just laying before class even started and I was sweating more than I do after an hour of pilates! BUT, I did make it for the entire 90 minutes without dying, although I didn’t do all 26 poses, but I didn’t leave the room! I even went back the next day! The ladies in the dressing room were so sweet and supportive! They encouraged me to come back and not to give up even though I wanted to so badly. It truly was the hardest exercise I have ever done, but in a different way. At first I was so worried everyone would look at me and know I was doing the poses wrong, or judge me if I couldn’t make it without resting, but the good news is, that everyone is too concerned with making sure they are doing it right themselves, they don’t have time to worry about anyone else in the room! Isn’t that awesome!
It has been one month since I have been attending Bikram Yoga at Katy. I had to miss some because I had an upper respiratory infection the second week and I almost stopped going because I didn’t want to “start all over again.” But when I went back for the first time afterwards, it was amazing! It was the first time I made through all 26 postures without having to rest! I was so excited I almost screamed with joy afterwards!
Feeling better after the respiratory infection, I began to notice something and it scared me. I even mentioned it to my husband. Since a young age, I was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Chronic Constipation. Even though the IBS got better after I had my gallbladder removed, the CC has always stayed the same. I have tried every over-the-counter stool softner, Smooth Move, Skinny Girl, nasty-smelling-hold-your-nose-throw-it-down-newest-remedy-yo-grandma-said-so-or-yo-money-back-guarantee-concoction-you-name-it-I-tried it! I am telling you, I read the reviews and if someone said it worked, I bought it and didn’t care how badly it tasted, I drank it, ate it or rubbed it all over me! BUT, nothing worked.
But,I noticed I was having regular bowel movements for three days without having to take a laxative. Not only three days in a row, but more than once a day! I was talking to my husband and told him that something was just “not right.” I said something “half-jokingly” about just getting over this awful cold and now worrying about stomach cancer. He didn’t think it was funny of course, but in the back of my mind I was really concerned. Then, the next day, the same thing. And so on and so on to this very day! For some people, this probably seems odd that I was so worked up over this, however, for a 48 year old woman who could go up to two weeks without a bowel movement unless taking a hardcore laxative, this was somewhat of a miracle.
Then, one day in yoga class, during the Pavanamuktasana pose, I heard the instructor say this pose massages ascending, descending and transverse colon. I had an “ah ha” moment. I realized the ONLY thing I was doing different in my life was Bikram and it was at that exact moment I knew I was a Yogi for life! But my story doesn’t stop here! It seems that there might have been an added blessing hiding in the midst.
Since the age of 21, I have also been the unlucky recipient of 17 kidney stones. It appears that my body has a deficiency of whatever breaks down calcium oxalate, a chemical compound that forms needle-shaped crystals, a major constituent of human kidney stones. Surgery has always been performed to remove the stones because for whatever reason, the stones get stuck in my urethra tube and cannot pass. Once the surgery is performed, a stint has to be placed in the urethra and left anywhere from 3-7 days and that is as painful, if not MORE painful, than the kidney stone itself.
On Saturday, February 11, 2011, I woke up and wasn’t feeling too perky, however, I decided I was going to yoga anyway. When I got there I placed my towel mat in the room and went to the bathroom and noticed an excessive amount of blood in my urine. Uh oh! HERE’S YOUR SIGN! But, no flank pain? So, I decided I would just inform Holly, the owner and that morning’s instructor that if I had to leave, it was because it was an emergency and I was passing a kidney stone. She was so sweet and said, “No problem!” I went on to class and made it through fine and went on home. Before the day was over I did end up in the Emergency Room, IV and CT showing I had a kidney stone about 2 inches from my bladder. They sent me home saying they felt I would be able to pass it since it had already travelled so far. I thought to myself, yeah sure, that’s what you think. Although, I was pretty surprised that I had not experience any flank pain and only slight burning and pressure when I urinated. Sunday came and still nothing; that is, until, 10pm. I felt a little cramp in my back and told my husband I thought it (kidney stone) might be trying to move. I told him I thought it might be a good idea if I took a couple of pain pills (I keep a few on hand for emergencies like this) and waited about 30 minutes to see if it would get better. It didn’t. We made a trip back to the ER. I was admitted, given mega doses of drugs and scheduled for surgery the next day, Monday, at 4pm. I was literally being wheeled out of my hospital room for surgery when I asked if I could go to the bathroom one more time. Each time I went to the bathroom, I would have to strain my urine so if I did pass the stone, it would be visible, however, since I had never passed a stone, I didn’t know what one looked like.
Well, this time, something was in the strainer after I went and I washed it off and came out and asked the nurse what it was. Now remember, I was very drugged so therefore I was not totally “with it” but when she said, “Well, honey, that is a kidney stone,” I thought I would yell out just like I wanted to the first time I made it through all 26 poses for the first time! All I knew was that number 17 must be my lucky number because I was not going to have to have surgery, which meant I was not going to have to have that horrible stint!
Now, am I saying that Bikram Yoga kept me from having to have surgery to remove that stone? No, I am not. What I am saying is that I have had 17 kidney stones in 24 years and I have passed ONE out of 17 on my own without surgery. The only thing different I am doing now is Bikram Yoga. The last stone I had before this one was Summer 2011 and they removed it with surgery. The one before that was December 2010 and it was removed by surgery and the story goes on.
I truly believe I am mentally, physically and spiritually stronger and healthier after only one month of Bikram Yoga. I am more flexible now than I was at the age of 16 when I was a cheerleader, playing basketball and running track! (And I just had knee surgery 8 weeks ago and also had 2 perforated discs in my lower back! No joke!!) I thank my friends for introducing me to it and I love how the members and staff at Katy are so encouraging and supportive. There are many other health positives in my life in the last month I could attribute to Bikram, but I would challenge you to find your own. I also would say, once you start, no matter how much you may want to give up at first, press on! Once you make it through the first couple of weeks, you will be a Yogi for life, just like me! And by the way, incase you’re wondering, today in class I burned over 1200 calories!