My journey with the 200hr yoga teaching training course started with this question,
“What do you want for your birthday?”
Each year I will be asked this question from hubby. So do I want more of that material birthday present? I thought. Do I really need another handbag? Another jewellery? Another of something I already have?
For a few years I have had the desire to go for a yoga teacher training course. After returning to Singapore, the desire was even stronger as there are so many places that offer such course and getting around in Singapore is a no brainer. My fingers did the research online. I visited many yoga studios online, looking at the schedules, testimonials and locations. After countless visits, one place suited my schedule nicely and I really like the bohemian feel of the location. It was Tirisula Yoga.
However, one lingering apprehension still lingered in my mind. The course would start on 6th July 2013. Oh my! that means the course would be right smack in the middle of Ramadan, the Muslim fasting month. As I am a practicing Muslim, that would impact me! Can I take the physical demand of the practice as Astanga YOga is a real workout.
During the fasting month, Muslims fast from dawn to dusk. That would be about 5.30am to 7.20pm. During that time no food or liquid is allowed to be consumed and one has to abstain from any temptation of the flesh or mind. I was worried. Can my physical self take the punishing demand? For years during the fasting month, I would avoid going or practicing yoga. This apprehension lingered but at the same time I felt that I have to achieve something in 2013. My spirit won.
I made my way to Tirisula, spoke to Master Paalu about my apprehension. He gave me the assurance that if I find it physically demanding I could take it easy. On that day my life changed, I conquered fear.
On the third lesson, which is on the second week, fasting month started. I went about my primary series, going through all the asanas as perspiration trickled down my face. Its like being in a sauna. As my course mates take sips of water, I was pleasantly surprised that I was neither thirsty or unable to complete my full primary series. This went on for a full 8  lessons. After each weekend I was extremely thankful that I survived.
Many course mates were surprised when they realized that I was fasting. Many asked how I managed? I think the answer is in the predawn breakfast that I had such that I could sustain till dusk. This was my inexpensive diet during the fasting month to ensure that I would survive the practice.
1 EGGS-(I had an egg daily)
Egg protein is a rich source of the essential amino acid leucine, which is important in modulating the use of glucose by skeletal muscle and in facilitating muscle recovery after exercise. It has therefore been recommended that this would be advantageous to people undergoing endurance training.
2 BANANAS (1 banana)
Bananas contain three natural sugars – sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy.
Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. The banana is the number one fruit with the world’s leading athletes.
3 DATES (2 dates)
As the body needs a certain amount of carbohydrates to function properly, one good source comes from dates. The simple sugars of dates are easily digested and processed by the body, making them more beneficial than corn syrup or processed sugars.
4 ORANGES (1 orange)
Orange strengthens your emotional body, encouraging a general feeling of joy, well-being, and cheerfulness. Although oranges are acidic before you digest them, they contain many alkaline minerals that help to balance out the body after they are digested. In this respect, they are similar to lemons which are one of the most alkaline foods available.
The human body is anywhere from 55% to 78% water depending on body size. Drinking water regulates your body temperature. That means you’ll feel more energetic when doing exercises. Water also helps to fuel your muscle.
I am glad that I had the right nutrition. No expensive supplements, just regular food from the kitchen.  After the first try out of the above diet and I survived, I realized that my initial fear was unfounded. I am glad that I listened to my inner voice and went along with my gut feel to proceed in signing for the 200hr YOGA TTC. The experience was a wonderful one. While fasting, I felt lighter and more flexible. It has enriched me as a person. I am glad I won the battle of the will.
So though my birthday present did not come in a nice box with ribbons, the intangible experience and knowledge I gained are worth much more.
NORZA  200hr Yoga TTC(weekend July-Oct 2013)