BIKRAM YOGA, JULIA, WEIGHT WATCHERS, AND THE BEGINNING OF MY LIFE
When my girlfriend and I met, we discovered that we shared a common goal to get in shape and to lose weight. In fact, throughout both of our lives we have been overweight. Our daily routine included work, socializing, and a lack of exercise. My doctor told me that if I continued ‘status quo’, I would risk coronary heart disease and other health issues over time. We started doing Bikram yoga together to break that chain and started to watch what we ate in order to further our health benefits.
Less than a year later, we collectively lost over 100 pounds and have encountered many other benefits, as follows. I no longer snore due to the light asthma that I once had. I can bend over and tie my shoes without turning blue and gasping for breath. I have a new driver's license with a younger-looking picture and a weight of 185 (about the same as I was in 1985 when I was 18). My girlfriend weighs 20 pounds less now than she did when she was in high school! We receive so many compliments from family, coworkers, friends, and others that it is sometimes embarrassing – my mother stared at me in disbelief of the slimmed down son she saw for, like, 10 minutes and I had to say "Stop Staring! It’s as if you haven’t seen me in 10 years!" I certainly smile more now than I have ever smiled in my life!
We attended our first class in December 2001 at Yoga Haven on Eureka/20th in the Castro district of San Francisco. Starting in January 2002 we began a once-a-week regiment of attending yoga, and at the end of January we decided to increase it to twice per week.
As we continued with the practice, we felt like we were becoming more flexible and getting in shape; however, the weight was coming off slowly, mostly due to lavish/overflowing dinners that we rewarded ourselves with after each yoga session. At the end of March we increased our exercise to three times per week, but still ate a lot after each practice. By May 2002, we started Weight Watchers and the weight started to melt away. In July 2002, we attended yoga four times a week on a regular basis. There are some weeks when I do Bikram Yoga every day just to try to encourage my metabolism.
In the end of October 2002, 10 months after starting yoga and six months after starting Weight Watchers, my girlfriend and I have now collectively lost over 100 pounds!
Bikram yoga is an amazing practice! It has worked our bodies inside and out and has helped me discover muscles that I didn't know existed. It has helped both my girlfriend and I get in shape and lose inches in addition to weight. It has helped tone and change the shape of our bodies, allowing us to see benefits over time in terms of wardrobe alterations. We have overcome the pattern of overeating and lack of a consistent exercise plan.
Bikram Yoga has increased our metabolism and pushed us to our limits while providing a calming effect in our daily lives. It is truly a results-oriented exercise program. I look forward to continuing my practice and feel lucky to have overcome my disinterest in exercise…the greatest step is getting in the door and, as far as I’m concerned, after Half Moon it’s all a joy-ride. It has helped us change our lives and we have encouraged our friends and family members to attend classes with us. In all, we have brought over a dozen people with us to attend classes at our various studios around the country!