These married high-school sweethearts have lots to be proud of: not only have they kept their relationship going strong for 16 years, but they recently completed a 30-day challenge (30 classes in 30 days).
Greig claims that their discovery of Bikram yoga is “all Shannon’s fault,” but also admits, “My first class didn’t feel so bad, as long as I kept imagining I was in Hawaii.”
Shannon’s beginnings weren’t such a holiday. Greg laughingly recounts Shannon’s nervous preparation for their first class, “Shannon had anxiety about going to her first class and even cranked the heat in her car on the way over on a summer’s day, trying to get used to the feeling of being hot…”
Shannon remembers her amazement at her fellow class mates: “I remember thinking I can’t believe these people can make it through all these postures without dying. I ended up laying there near the end just trying to not panic about the heat.”
Since completing their 30-day challenge, both Shannon and Greig have noticed some changes. They’re not the only ones – everyone around them has noticed their weight loss! Shannon and Greig also notice that running is easy for them now and they have more stamina for other activities, as well as reduction in stress, anxiety and back pain.
With stressful jobs as probation and corrections officers, they like the peace and singularity of the Bikram practice. Shannon says it’s “the sense of accomplishment I feel after every class and seeing what my body is capable of (or not capable of) and how that changes every day” that keeps her coming back; while Greig likes “that centered feeling you get being in the room, concentrating on only yourself.”
Would they have imagined doing 30 straight days of yoga before they signed up for, or even before they had completed, their challenge?
“Heck no! A few months ago, I thought there was no way I could do 30 days of yoga. I thought it would be exhausting and impossible to schedule in,” says Shannon. Greig adds, “I thought it was crazy talk to do 2 days in a row, never mind 30.”
“We are pros at making excuses not to go to yoga!” Shannon and Greig explain, “We just had to make it a priority. Sometimes that means we have to cut out some other things we like, such as relaxing in front of the TV after work when you feel burned out. During the challenge, it meant the house cleaning got neglected. Overall, we realized that most excuses to not go turned out not to be valid.”
Now that they have completed their challenge, they plan to make a bit more time for housework and some more enjoyable activities, like traveling and taking their dogs to parks. But this doesn’t mean they’ll neglect their Bikram yoga practice. Their goals include practicing yoga consistently, incorporating yoga into an exercise plan to help with weight loss and working more on enjoying the present.