Props: HOT YOGA…Pants
You hear “hot yoga,” and what comes to your mind? For most men, it’s a little heat, some stretching and an abundance of yoga pants… WRONG. After it all, I was sulking in my wrongness and realized the people around me deserve a hardy props for being the gladiators that they are.
The heat wave hits you like a ripple effect from a mushroom cloud you see in those old A-bomb propaganda videos from the nuclear arms race. All the hot yoga jokes evaporate from my mind, and I immediately realize, I’m not in Air Conditioning anymore (in my best Wizard of Oz impression). As we walk in, I ask maybe the most critical question that should have been asked right out of the gate, “How long is this going to last?” The answer folks was one and one half of an hour, and in hot yoga terms ETERNITY.
I look to my right at a stranger, “thermostat broken?” I chuckle but absolutely no smirk or laughter from her—it was at this point I realized I might be on the morning news. I wouldn’t survive. There’s some tribal music gently playing in the background as to give you a feeling of uncertainty as the temperature slowly rises and settles right around 101 degrees. And so it begins…
Pose one, stretch one I catch a massive ass cramp. I can only imagine what I looked like… the room is completely covered in mirrors and my 6 foot 7 behemoth-looking body in a sea of petite (but curvy) women is struggling through an ASS cramp. I imagine I was inadvertently making mirror-eye-contact with these women while making a less than attractive face and rubbing my buttocks. I could tell I was pretty much making everyone feel uncomfortable.
It quickly starts to smell like you’re exercising in a dirty laundry hamper/Vietnamese sweatshop as your crew begins to lather up while the previous crews body fluid left on the floor simultaneously begins to evaporate. Not but fifteen minutes in I was ready for the instructor to kindly put out my torch and kick me off the island. I searched Webster dictionary to try and find some way to describe the abundance of moisture that begins to emit from your body and nothing does it justice. Clothes apparently were optional and, quite frankly, nobody could blame anyone for that; heat makes you do crazy things, right? Well… I kid you not I found myself in a pool complied of over 30 other humans’ sweat in just my compression shorts, literally, no shirt, no bball shorts, just the compressions…. I came fully dressed, but I guess the art of yoga stripped me of all material things. It was soon then after we were asked to “invert” and by this time I am all in, my chi is revered up, I’m pretty much naked, and I’m doing whatever I’m told.
I’m upside down when suddenly I felt a warm bead of sweat that came directly from my ball sack trickle down my entire body and roll over my entire face. I was shocked and reality came flooding back. My chi is snapped! I begin to think, this whole fucking time you’re switching these poses you feel like your worshiping some false god, well you know what?! It’s not my God, Lord Jesus Christ, because he would never have me do something where my own ball sweat goes into my mouth. I think to the laymen Yoga should simply be called “holding a fart in, in awkward ways.” Because that’s basically what it felt like, and I can’t say I did myself any favors- I had the Bojangles 4-piece home style family dinner box to myself only a few hours prior… but that’s beside the point.
The whole time the instructor demands you to, “listen to what your breathing is telling you.” It’s telling me to leave… butt…. and I say butt with two TT’s because that’s when I found my chi again.
I glance around the room and notice the abundance of rear ends, and let’s just say Sir Mix-A-Lot would have been pleased. I saw a ‘scientific study’ of sorts that said a heterosexual man will perform more bench press reps with a girl sitting on his lap. For what I can see as only obvious reasoning for that to be a fact, I noticed that it correlated inversely to this exercise as well. I regained composure at this stage.
My eyes, however, burn filled with my own sweat as I pear through the liquid pain like a window-sill during a steady rain. I see these words on a gym bag by me-“Your attitude on life is a direct reflection of the way you feel about yourself.” Maybe my “chi” mixed with life-threatening dehydration drew me to this quote but it inspired me. I had gone on a personal journey inside my own head: like Tom Hanks in Castaway or something… I had many ups and downs in this hour and a half, something like nothing I’ve ever experienced, and for that I am grateful.
So immediately after I weighed the pros and cons of the experience and put my chips in for 10 more sessions. Cuz you know me, I’m a deals guy, and when Groupon hits you up saying 10 sessions, or “battles” as I like to call them, for $35 you accept the offer and the challenge. “Namaste,” the wise yogi said at the end of our yoga session. I’m not sure what the hell it means, but dammit it sounds cool.. So props to the hot yoga goers, props to Groupon and most of all props to yoga pants.