Monday, January 8, 2007

Ahhhh! Yoga

I went to my first yoga class Sun. morning since last Tues., it was awesome! I tweeked my left shoulder getting out of the bathtub 10 min. before Sat.'s swing WO, and realized that I hadn't stretched out my sholuders during the week at all. It felt great to stretch it out.

I broke my left arm when I was four years old and when they put it back together I was left with what is known as "shotgun arm". Because my arm is crooked it changes the center of gravity on my left side, when I do anything overhead it affects my shoulder. Since starting yoga I noticed my shoulder pain had dissappeared and attributed it to the stretching I was doing in class. Just another reason why, for me, yoga is a nice fit with my other training.

I was tempted to go for a walk late in the day (4-5pm) but remembered that I had an extra long walk on Sat. and I was just being paranoid into over-exercising. Spent the time teaching my son to drive a stick-shift!.

Sunday is a low-calorie day since Sat. is my cheat day.

8:45 Bikram yoga
AM weight 128.4

Sunday menu

5-11:00 coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 185 cal.
11:30 large pear 125 cal.
2:00 veg soup w/4 oz. chicken, butternut squash puree 320 cal.
4:30 braised lamb shank 200 cal.
5:45 large apple 120 cal.
8:00 ginger tea w/honey 20 cal.

Total calories 970

I had a little trouble editing my Sat. swing WO but I wanted to mention my heartrate. Mark gave me an awesome heartrate monitor so I recorded my heartrate during my 5 sets of three min. swing combos;

After set #1 169 HR, #2 171 HR, #3 169 HR, #4 174 HR, #5 172 HR

I also recorded what my HR came down to inbetween sets after 1 min. rest and it was 151-159.

Sunday was a great day!


Royce said...

Well at least I think 12 ( 11 now ) more days won't kill me!!

Sugar for you. Microbrewed beer for me. LOL

My wife wants to get into yoga but is intimidated by anything structured, like she won't be able to keep up.
I think it would do her a world of good, we'll see.

Tracy Reifkind said...

Tell her one of the nice things about yoga is that you go at your own pace, unless you're competitve like me! Bikram yoga also known as "hot" yoga has relatively easy poses but because you sweat your ass off you think you're getting a better WO.

Most yoga studios have price breaks for beginners so that they can try it out with little financial obligation.

Tell her to quit coming up with excuses, everyone has to start somewhere!

Royce said...

Agreed, I am going to buy her a 10 session pass or something and say
" Here hon, Love ya. "

Tracy Reifkind said...

Go with her! How romantic!

Joe said...

I'm surprized that you don't spend a little more time talking about Bikram Yoga.
It's a great way to burn a lot of calories. Somewhere between 450-700 cals each class.
Each class is 90 min. long. You get to do it in a room around heated to 106-112 degrees. It's what I would call very active stretching. You can't beleive how much you can sweat.
The best part is when your done and trying to walk back out to your car. Talk about a natural high. It's a great total body workout.
If you add in kettlebells to your workout routine, wow!

Tracy Reifkind said...

Royce, I was joking about the "romantic" comment!

Tracy Reifkind said...


Bikram is great but there is NO WAY that you burn that many calories.Especially since everything is static and you are just holding poses.I love it because it loosens me up and I love to sweat but it's nowhere NEAR that many calories burned.

I look forward to practicing other types of yoga in the future.

Joe said...

If you run a goole search on Bikram Yoga and calories burned. I beleive that you will find my numbers to be right on.
Now I admit I'm much bigger than you and I burn a lot more cals.
90 min of Hatha Yoga (no heat and less vigorous burns almost 300 (per

Tracy Reifkind said...

Joe, I'm no expert (obviously) at the science of burning calories. And I haven't "googled" this information yet, who is the info written by? Bikram?

Two things, first, I took my heart rate during my last Bikram class. It only reached over 150 1 time after "balancing stick pose" 99% of the time it was under 135! I don't know about you but swing a KB for a min. and see where your HR is.

Second, there are plenty of women in class that do nothing other than Bikram, I would never change the look of my body with the look of their body. I feel as if my leaness and muscle tone was better than 99% of any woman in any of the classes I've been to ( and that's alot!) with acception of course of the 20 year olds! And none of them have just lost over 100 pounds! And that was before I started doing Bikram.

Sweating off water weight is not the same thing as burning calories. If I could only pick one exercise to do the rest of my life, hands down, it would be kettlebells!

I don't know if I'm explaining any of this correctly, Mark's the expert I'll have to ask him. But those are my feelings. Tracy

Mark Reifkind said...

sorry man I'm just not buying it.Technically, since you are not doing any movement you arent, in a physics sense, doing any work. No way is it burning 700 calories an hour.Are you saying it's the work equivilant of running 7 miles? cause that burns 700 calories.
and yes consider the source if Bikram is saying it. I'm not the biggest bikram fan in the world if you cant' tell.


Joe said...

First of all, very few people will ever loose 100 lbs. It's a very imprssive feat. No mater how it was done.
I've bee lifting with kettlebells for about 3 years now. I love and believe in working out with them (why else would I be reading your blog?). There is a great "before" photo of me on Mike Mahler's website (white t-shirt, blue base ball cap and a beer belly). That was about 60 lbs ago. It took a lot of changes to loose that weight. Diet, kettlebells, Bikram yoga, and lots of walking were just part of it.
In regards to Bikram yoga, I believe that there is a big difference between passively sitting in a sauna for 90 min. or doing a very vigourous workout in that heat for 90 min. I am spent after that work out. It makes a big difference. I have never been so loose and flexble (btw I'm 51). Everybody should try this workout at least once. After your first workout you'll understand how tough it is.
At the studio where I work out you'll find many slim and well toned people (young and older). You'll also find over weight, out of shape people (young and older).
Will kettlebells alone change your weight, probably not. Will Bikram yoga alone change your weight, probably not. A healthy combination of diet, exercise, and life style changes will change your weight.

Mark Reifkind said...

Joe, this is mark. I agree with you that it's the combination of exercise dietary and lifestyle changes that are the most effective for changing body composition. BUT, I was just addressing your post that Bikram yoga could burn 700 calories in a session. I just dont see how that is possible as it is nowhere near as strenuous as running 7 miles, the caloric equivilant.

Now if you have a diet where you are not gaining or losing weight and just add kbs to the mix will you lose weight? probably, as you are buring more total calories.

but the same would be true if you added walking.or yoga. but kbs will allow you to burn MANY more calories per unit of time than almost any other activity.but with kbs you can always swing heavier, faster and more reps to increase the work load. you can only walk so fast and in bikram you can also only make it so hard. especially when the stated goal is to make it easier.

Tracy Reifkind said...

Joe, One of the hardest things about communicating via writing is "tone". I didn't mean to insult anyone doing Bikram yoga.

I do Bikram at least 3 days a week and hate it if I can't go at least that many times. In fact I started out the last year (2006) doing 60 Bikram classes in 60 days, sometimes doing TWO classes back to back! In fact I replied to Royce suggesting that he tell his wife about "hot" yoga.

I have reffered many friends to Bikram yoga and continue to do so.

I personally have acclimated to the heat and wish at times it was hotter! But I'm also the first to admit that I'm more flexible, more stable and after this last week believe that it helps keep me from getting injured by stretching.

I just don't agree that it burns 450-700 calories. If I stopped doing it tomorrow there would be little change in my body, but if I stop my KB training I believe there would be a HUGE change in my body (I'm talking about size and shape).

I really hope that it doesn't seem like Mark and I are ganging up on you that was never my intent. I just don't like giving out wrong info.

Congrats on your success feel free to comment on other things that have worked for you. There's alot of us out here "fighting the fight". I look forward to any and all of your comments in the future.


Joe said...

Thanks to both Tracy and Mark for responding. I don't feel like like you guys are ganging up on me at all.
I'm sure that any time you estimate how many cals you can burn doing a certain activity there are many factors to consider.
For example, I also do Muay Thai kickboxing (not cardio kickboxing btw). gives that a 687 cals per hr burn.
However, I'm as smoked after a 90 min Bikram class as I am after doing a kickboxing class. Sometimes more.
Some days I coast through a class and other days I really push myself for the full 90 min.
Bottom line for me is it's a tough, physical workout. It keeps me loose and flexible. I'm positive that it burns a large amount of cals.
For me, I think kettlebells are great. They fulfill most of my weight lifting needs. But they are only part of what I need and use.