The week has flown by but it’s also been hard. I think it’s the routine that’s getting to me more than anything. I am still so excited about all the learning and my new found friends but eating the same breakfast and washing the same old yoga clothes is starting to take its toll!
Friday was pretty special. We had a lecture from an incredible lady called Anne Marie Bennstrom – who invented the ‘aerobics’ class and founded Sanctuary health spas. She’s 81 years old and looks about 50. She wasn’t there to talk about exercise and beauty, more about her experiences living on her own in the jungle when she was younger (nearly dying of starvation, being bitten by a scorpion and almost being raped by men with machetes). Her main point was that she survived all the struggles she had to face. She believes that as long as we live alongside nature and recognise ourselves as a product of nature we will have a blissful life. She talked a little bit about food and told us to stop counting calories – she said the definition of ‘Calorie’ was the amount of energy it takes to heat 1 gram of water to 1 degree, which has no relation to food. According to Anne, anything that grows in nature that tastes good, looks good and smells good, we should eat. I still think a little chocolate can be added to the mix though!
One thing that stuck out again for me was how emotion has such a huge impact on our body and mind. The best example Anne gave was that when you look at a deer, they are all the same – no matter how old or young - they all are beautiful, perfect creatures. With the human body – we all start off looking the same (as babies) but as we grow, we are all so different and almost never perfect (in proportion, spine, knees, feet etc). This is due to the crystallisation of emotion within certain points of our body. This may sound like a cliché but Bikram Yoga helps to rebalance the emotions and the physical body.
Oh my God, there’s so much I want to write down but unless you were at the lecture, I think it would just sound baffling.
Rajashree (Bikram’s wife) spent lots of time with us this week – going through the benefits of each posture one by one. It was so interesting and will really help when I’m teaching. I think it’s important for students to know why they are doing each posture and what it is particularly beneficial for. Next week, Bikram will go through the exact way to do each posture. We’ve also been told week 8 will be hard (and week 9 will be party week). I’m predicting we’ll have to do a back to back class at some point next week, that’s what happened in Acapulco training last fall during week 8.
Looking forward to the weekend. Me and the girls are going to the mall to do some clothes shopping. I have literally been wearing the same clothes for months. Also going out for dinner to my favourite restaurant here - it’s called Babe’s but isn’t a strip joint (think pig instead). I am going to have a huge chunk of barbeque chicken. It’s crazy how excited I get over the most normal activities. I will never take my free time for granted again. I have to do lots of dialogue study too - learning Half Tortoise up to Spine Strengthening for next week.
Here’s my highlights;
Best meal: Smoked salmon omelette with a toasted bagel for lunch. I’ve not had eggs for weeks and not eaten toasted bread since before training. The ketchup finished it off nicely. Felt so good the whole day after. Dr T is right – eggs are a super food.
I’m wondering...what to wear for graduation?!
I miss...a washing machine and holding hands.
My practise...is getting stronger and more focused. My shoulders feel looser and my Standing Bow is so much better. However my left hamstring is still a bugger.
Best class: Friday night with Georgia from New York. She was one of Bikram’s first students (from 1971). She said that the one thing she’ll always remember Bikram telling her is that the way to be happy yourself is to make other people happy. I like that.
I love...every single person on the training, especially my group. We laugh so much during posture clinic about the most stupid things and are so supportive of each other. I know everyone is going to be an incredible teacher.
Quote of the week : Nelson Mandella (read by Rajashree)
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light not our darkness that frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually who are you not to be? You are a child of God.