Last night my roommate asked if I wanted to go to hot yoga with her in town. Instantly I had flashbacks to my one college experience with hot yoga, when I was much leaner, much more flexible, and had no reservations about doing things outside of my comfort zone.

But thinking about her invitation now, I cringed a little bit imagining this body in a downward dog while sweating bullets. I'm not by any means the "yoga type": I weightlift and hike and consider dragging a dead animal out of the woods a fun workout.

I said yes only after she reassured me they were all about "relaxation, peace, and rejuvenation". I'd just gotten done with a long, rigorous weekend of moving across town and figured I owed it to myself to unwind for a restart in a new place.

What kind of yoga classes can you take in Billings?

Somehow, the class my roommate and I attended at Good Vibes Hot Yoga was just simply the 60-minute hot yoga. They have other ones for sculpting or getting fit, but I'm thinking the 60-minute one is going to do all the same things...

Stepping into the studio and away from the subzero temperatures outside, I started feeling excited, thinking it was a good night to do it and warm up.

Well, you warm up alright. The instructor had us lay on our mats and adjust to the heat. I was right below two of the heaters that were blasting at 90+ degrees, 100% humidity. Two minutes in, I already was struggling to breathe -- and I was simply laying down.

Oh yeah, relaxing alright.

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She began the class by telling us to wrap our leg around the other leg, stand on one foot, touch the ceiling, rub our noses, and scratch our butts all in one go...

Just kidding. But that's what it sounded and felt like.

Most of the poses I couldn't even do, but I still tried doing them on the "easy level" where you modify the action. Even then, my shirt was completely soaked and it felt like my organs inside were even sweating.

The hour-long class seemed to last forever, a never-ending hot hell on earth. After we did all the twisting and bending, the instructor ran through an ab workout, a spine workout, and a shoulder workout. At the point she said to join her for the shoulder workout, I was ready to slide across the sweaty floor and out the door for an escape.

Who can do hot yoga in Billings?

I looked around at the other participants: Most were women in their 20s or 30s who were quite obviously yoga pros and I was nervous they were going to pull something with their bodies contorted in half like that.

The men all stripped their shirts and had a look of consternation on their faces as if they were in some body-twisting tournament.

The majority of people there seemed to be in great shape, even the older gentleman who was next to my roommate. He seemed to be experiencing an out-of-body moment. Well, actually, quite a few of them.

I felt out of place, having a body built like a linebacker and not being able to do the child downward-facing warrior frog tree pose. Or something similarly called that.

But strangely, the longer I was in it and the more my sweat disgustingly pooled on my mat, I felt more comfortable trying to push myself and attempt the poses. No one was minding me, they were all minding themselves and their zen, or whatever the term is.

At the end of the session, the instructor finally had us lay on our backs for "savasana" and threw us a cold essential-oil-infused rag. Mine was cold only for about 0.2 seconds after I laid it on my drenched face.

The instructor finished by telling us "You're never too old, never too bad, you're never too sick to start."

I liked that.

But still, I don't know if I'd go again voluntarily.

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