You're in a room with 30 other people. It's 105 degrees. You're sweating harder than a scarlet woman in church. At the moment, your arms are twisted around one another, hands clasped beneath your nose for dear life. Your left leg is wrapped around your right leg like a wet noodle, with your toes peeking out behind the right calf. You're 30 minutes into a 1.5 hour workout. The teacher comes around smiling like a maniac, and makes an adjustment to your arm placement. “WELCOME TO BIKRAM'S TORTURE CHAMBER!” She proclaims, grinning like a maniac.
Believe it or not, Bikram Yoga at Hot Spot Yoga (at 6427 West Hwy 146, Crestwood) has become one of the most rewarding workouts I've ever done. The classes are 1.5 hours of yoga in 105 degrees, spent sweating out your toxins and contorting your body until you look like a sweaty, flushed Picasso painting, working through the poses of Bikram yoga. I am not a trainer or a doctor, so I won't elaborate too much about how Bikram yoga is different than other yoga, or the myriad benefits one is supposed to experience from regular practice. The upbeat and helpful staff explains, throughout every class, how each posture benefits the practitioner. The instructors are also extremely patient, these classes are challenging for everyone from yoga virgins (like me!) to yoga experts.
In the past six weeks, I've been attending classes two or three times a week. I've lost a few pounds, but the most improvement I've seen has been in muscle tone, skin clarity and increased energy and flexibility. My poor neglected ab muscles are beginning to peek out from behind my butter fed stomach. After a hot yoga session, I walk out with the biggest endorphin high I've ever had, sweaty, exhausted, so satisfied and absolutely buzzed. I highly recommend the Optima electrolyte supplement they sell at Hot Spot, it replaces all the good nutrients you sweat out, and encourages you to re-hydrate. The sleep I get the night after a hot yoga session is phenomenal. I can't say enough good things about practice, it has helped to revitalize my fitness regime and refocus my exercise goals.
Hot Spot has a myriad of information about pricing and classes available on their website  and facebook page . Hot Spot offers hefty student discounts, and it's great for people of all ages, sexes, and levels of fitness. Hot Spot regularly runs groupons and living social deals for beginners and returning patrons—part of what drew me in was their 20 classes for $20 groupon for new students. It's the only Bikram certified studio in our area.
photo courtesy of Hot Spot Yoga's facebook page