I showed up to Hot Yoga! on Wednesday morning with my gym towel – customarily just big enough to dab the sweat off my brow.
But when Kings center DeMarcus Cousins handed me a full-size bath towel along with a yoga mat, I should have known this would be no ordinary workout.
I accepted an invitation Tuesday night by Cousins to join him for his yoga class to get a better understanding of how in two months the two-time All-Star slimmed down into his best shape since coming to Sacramento in 2010.
It only took about five minutes to realize why Cousins gave me the large towel. With the room temperature set at more than 100 degrees with increased humidity, I was already sweating. Within 15 minutes, I was sweating as if I’d been sprinting outside in the Vegas heat.
I’ve practiced yoga before, but never in anything other than comfortable conditions. Hot yoga forced me to increase my focus simply because it’s hard to maintain balance while standing in a puddle of sweat.
Nearly an hour into the workout, I was soaked in sweat, and my towel felt like I’d stepped on it after a long shower.
After the class, I understood why Cousins has embraced hot yoga. I felt much looser than I would have had I gone through a routine warm-up.
Cousins pointed to another room and said, “You’re lucky we’re not in there.”
It’s where hot sculpting classes are held – a combination of yoga, pilates and weights that makes Cousins wince just thinking about how strenuous the class can be.
I’d barely survived the hot yoga session, so he was probably right.
Cousins departed for practice with Team USA, and I headed to the gym for some extra weight lifting.
Later, I told Cousins how much better I felt after yoga and acknowledged he was right. The next time I step into a hot yoga class, I’ll bring a bigger towel.