So, I love variation in a workout. When I want to mix it up, my favorite thing in the world is Bikram Yoga or any hot yoga series derived from the original Bikram practice. It is a 90-minute session with a 26 posture sequence in temperatures ranging from 103 to 108 degrees or more. There are many benefits to this form of yoga, but my main four are cardio, strength training, mental focus and detoxification.
The effort you put in can make this a great cardio workout with calorie-burning benefits. When I’m in a Bikram Yoga class, I notice that my heart rate goes up as much as it does when I run, and I don’t even have to leave my mat! Some people say that yoga doesn’t burn a lot of calories. I’m not so sure that this is an accurate statement because different people simply burn calories at a different rate. Personally, I think the harder you work in the class to do the poses correctly, the more calories you will burn.
Don’t flex on yoga, it builds muscle! When you hold the postures, you contract some of the bigger muscles in the body like quadriceps and hamstrings, which are known to also burn more calories.
Bikram Yoga gets me focused unlike any other workout regimen. It is one of the hardest things I have ever done and continue to do. Afterwards, though, I feel amazing. It releases stress and produces a calmness that carries over into my life. When I practice hot yoga, my focus is laser sharp, allowing no room for negative thinking, but only locking my knees and breathing through my nose. I can’t see myself living without it, the benefits are too great.
I love a good detox! If you have ever been in a steam room, then you know how awesome you feel after a great sweat. The high temperatures in a hot yoga room produce intense sweating that release toxins from the body.
When you’re looking to spice up your workout, attend a Bikram Yoga class. The health and mental well-ness benefits will have you going over and over again. I encourage everyone to try it at least once.