Bikram Yoga: 30-Day Challenge

Bikram himself reenacting Jesus on the cross.

Bikram himself reenacting Jesus on the cross.

My first Bikram yoga class was summer of 2007 at Yoga @ 42° in Jakarta (they also have a studio in Bali) followed by my second class a year and a half later in January 2009. On my second visit to the studio, on the wall was posted a large piece of paper titled ’30 DAY CHALLENGE’ with names and 30 checkbox columns. Some boxes had 😦 faces drawn indicating a ‘fail’.  By the end of my class that day, the instructor suggested to give it a go. So I did. I have always been a competitive type in challenging my own capabilities. Though while in high school I was never half good enough to make it to any sports varsity teams; I was always allocated in the junior varsity teams, which basically means you’re shit but you tried. I was determined to achieve a level of something this time around.

Began the 30-day journey; there were lots of good days, there were also lots of bad days when my body would refuse to endure the class and experience near-vomit refluxes. During some days, 90 minutes went by quickly, and on other days, a duration of 90 minutes cardiovascular in heat was a slow living hell. Towards the end of the challenge, I managed to learn (or so I thought) a yoga trick of emptying the mind completely into a meditative state that helped me ease through the class. I was staring into blanks, only letting my ear function to listen to instructions. So after  30 days of ticking my attendance box with the ups and downs of a yoga journey, complete it I did.

More than physical changes themselves like flexibility, lengthened muscles, detox, stamina and endurance, the most rewarding aspect from having completed the challenge for me was the discipline and perseverance mindset I adopted. If I could endure (Note: with effort, not just flopping around) 90-minute grueling yoga clases for 30 days in a row, I can do anything. You can do absolutely anything if you put your mind into it. Make it an intention. Progress takes time through practice. Changes don’t happen overnight, but add another night or two in and you’ll be surprised to see what you can do on day 3! Use every little improvement to push you forward.

Bikram is for everyone. Any age, size, gender, shape, condition, background, you name it. You come to the class and work at your own pace. There’s no need to feel embarrassed at your level of practice. Everyone had been there at the beginning. You will be required to make high demands of yourself; tremendous concentration, patience, trust, discipline, and determination. As you push yourself harder, they will  develop within you.

If you are considering Bikram and found a studio running a 30-day challenge for its members, I recommend giving it a go. You really get there so much quicker.


  1. I am in the middle of my own 30-day challenge and just started a blog. So great to find your words here!

    • Good on you! I’m on my second 30-Day challenge myself. Will write about the second experience soon.

  2. wow – that’s really inspirational, I have ben crap at getting back to bikram for a while. this is what I need to get my arse back in gear. how did you structure your 30 days, all mornings/evenings/mixture etc? be interested to hear your method. well done, and thanks for writing about it

    • To be honest, my first 30-day challenge back in January-February 2009 was completed with half struggle. I wasn’t as raw fueled as I’d like to have been at the time. Though, I’m the type of person who cannot break commitments well; especially in fitness achievements. I had a mix of morning and evenings. My second run of 40-day challenge over in September-November 2009 (I attempted to do 60) was a breeze on raw food. By this time I’d completed 55 sessions in 40 days. Went a little nuts on the twice a day, sometimes back-to-backs. Like I said, a breeze on raw food. The only reason I didn’t go as far as 60 was because I ended up being a sweat-without-effort-machine and it backfired on my pole dancing activity. I sweat and slipped all too easy. So.. I quit in November. I got my sweat pores under control again and kind of miss it. Think will jump back into it. Less psychotically.

    • Type6
    • May 24th, 2010

    “grueling yoga clases for 30 days in a row”

    Very grueling … yoga clases … 30 days….

  3. Valuable info. Blessed us I stumbled upon your web site accidentally, for astonished the reason this kind of automobile accident decided not to transpired previous! I book-marked it.

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