Today before class I heard someone make a comment which I've heard many times before, including by some teachers. The comment is always something similar to, "Well I hate the class itself but it's worth it because I feel great afterwards." I happen to disagree with this line of thought and think it limits one's practice. Do I always enjoy the class when am in it? Of course not. Do I always look forward to class? Definitely not. However, for the most part, I do enjoy being in the hot room, doing the postures and yes - struggling.
Maybe it took me a while to realize it, but I am cognizant of the benefits of the yoga as I'm doing it, rather than just understanding the benefits to come later. I can feel the stretching, the detox, the meditation as it's happening and I enjoy it. If you just "grin and bear it" to get through the class than sorry to say, you're missing out on a lot. The class is often described as "a 90 minute open-eye moving meditation" which is spot-on. Part of that mediation is embracing the struggle and the difficulty and actually learning to appreciate it and enjoy it.
Perhaps that sounds a bit sadistic, as after all, why would anyone want to "torture" themselves for 90 minutes? But that's really the whole point. If you can embrace the torture chamber and accept it for what it is, you've really achieved something. If you continue to resist the heat, the humidity, the postures, etc, then you will continue to be adversely affected by it. The longer I practice Bikram Yoga, the more it becomes a mental exercise rather than a physical one, and as a result, I truly enjoy my 90 minutes in the room each day.