The beginning of a new year is a great time to push yourself into starting a challenge that will test your perseverance, patience, and overall fitness ability. The journey for me began towards the end of 2018 when I wrapped up a 30 day hot yoga challenge. The feeling I got from it inspired me to start another, which was an ideal way to kick off the new year. Whether you’re thinking of trying hot yoga or you need motivation to get into the studio; my journey will help keep you inline with accomplishing the goals you set for yourself on January 1st.
Why I Chose To Do This Challenge...
The goal was to complete 25-30 classes within the month. I decided to start the challenge for a few reasons. I wanted to find out if both my body and mind where disciplined enough to be able to complete it, and I wanted to see what a month of continuous yoga would do for me.
If you’ve never attended a hot yoga class, you know it can be very strenuous on your body. You need to go into the studio hydrated and with the mindset to be able to handle the heat; the temperature is set around 100 degrees. When the studio is this hot, you can burn around 450 calories per session in the 60 minute session.
Before the challenge began I calculated how many classes per week I would need to take; the goal was seven. When other events came up in my schedule, or I was too exhausted, I would take two classes per day in order to stay on track.
- Find a challenge you want to partake in. If you’re not sure join ClassPass so you can try out different studios and gyms before you commit yourself.
- Grab a planner and start prioritizing. Your life should be scheduled around the challenge.
- Book your classes before you start.
- Jot down what you want to accomplish and gain from the experience.
During the challenge I felt content and energetic. After week two, I could see an immense improvement in my frame of mind. I wasn’t fatigued, and I was in a good mood throughout the day. At the office I was more proficient in my work and I was able to get my designs done at a faster pace. As the challenge progressed, I had a few sore muscles which I dealt with by taking lavender Epsom salt baths. With every yoga class I attended, I became more ecstatic in getting closer to accomplishing my goal.
- Remember to engage in self-care.
- Don’t feel discouraged if you have an off day. Refer back to what you wrote about why you’re doing this challenge.
- Don’t push yourself beyond your limits.
- Accept your failures and turn them into learning lessons.
- Be patient with yourself.
How I Kept Myself Motivated
Finding ways to stay motivated was a major factor in my success. There were days when I wanted to sleep in, but had to push myself to get out of bed and make it to my morning class. To keep myself inspired I pinpointed the results that the challenge was doing for my body, like showing lean muscle growth and more defined abs. Seeing a healthier me when I looked in the mirror became a great reminder to keep moving closer to my goal.
My personal reward mechanism was buying cute yoga attire and accessories to wear to class. During the week I attended yoga after work so knowing I could relieve stress after a long day at the office was a reward in itself. On the weekends, my friend and I would indulge in Açai bowls and fresh coconuts after class.
- If you feel like quitting remind yourself why you started the journey.
- After you complete a task reward yourself.
- Keep a photo diary or a fitness journal and document your progress. If you’re feeling discouraged look through it for inspiration.
- Ask a friend to join with you; having a workout buddy can help push you to move forward.
Why It Was Worth It and Why I’m Doing It Again
On the final day of the challenge.
On day 30 the challenge was complete. I saw a boost in my metabolism, my body was more toned than when I began, and my flexibility increased. My overall mood improved as well which gave me a better perspective on life, more patience, and less stress. The most gratifying part was having my yoga instructor tell me she was proud of me and able to see my growth. Another benefit was meeting some incredible girls and forming everlasting friendships.
On my last day I reflected on how I felt. I compared the differences from when I first started to where I was at now. The thought of acquiring the discipline to finish the challenge was an incredible feeling. This was a remarkable journey and I can’t wait to tackle it again this coming month!
These are some of the benefits of incorporating hot yoga into your life:
- Detoxification of toxins
- Increased flexibility
- Looses tight joints
- Boosts metabolism
- Improves heart health
- Relieves stress
- Assists in weight loss
- Gives you glowing skin!
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