A Challenge to Myself ~ A Gift for You! - Blog at R. Dione Foto
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A Challenge to Myself ~ A Gift for You!

Rhonisha Franklin image by Jaxon Photo Group

A Challenge to Myself ~ A Gift for You!

I did it!  I completed 30 days straight of Bikram Yoga, a challenge to myself!!!

It all started last year when I was thinking about things I wanted to accomplish in 2017.  I decided that starting a yoga practice was on the list!

I determined that April would be the month.  It is a nice round month, 30 days exactly!

April 1st came around and I was poised and ready for my New Member Class at Bikram Yoga Riverdale.  Following the class, I was proud and concerned at the same time…

was I really committing to 30 days of this?!?!?  Subjecting myself to 90 minutes of pure intensity…not just physical intensity in a 108 degree room, but also the mental and spiritual intensity that comes along with the practice IF done correctly.

Rhonisha Franklin image by Jaxon Photo Group

Image by:  Jaxon Photo Group

What is Bikram Yoga you ask?  Well…

…it is a form of hot yoga developed by Bikram Choudhury in the 70’s.  It consists of a series of 26 poses and 2 breathing exercises lasting 90 minutes in a room set between 95 and 108 degrees Fahrenheit.

Why did you do this you ask? Well…

#1 I wanted to prove to myself that I could discipline myself enough to consistently practice something that was not normal to me and that would push me out of my comfort zone on a daily basis.

I also want to do things for my body today that my future 80 year old self will thank my for later.  Some of the benefits to doing this form of yoga include:  prevention of respiratory problems, muscle strengthening, increased flexibility, joint opening improving blood flow to reproductive system, improves sciatic nerve flexibility, balance, cleansing of arteries and veins, alleviates lower back pain, strengthens knees and spine, and more…

Last but certainly not least, I knew there had to be life lessons I could take away from this practice and there was!  I identified at least 1 life lesson during each class,

this is what I discovered:

Day 1:  Drink more water

Day 2: If it’s not on your mat, it’s none of your business

Day 3: Look forward, FOCUS on your eyes

Day 4: Rest is where healing begins

Day 5: Honor your body temple on and off the mat!

Day 6: push, push, push…stretch, stretch, stretch…relax, relax, relax…take a deep breath and repeat. We have to push ourselves to stretch ourselves, then relax in what you’ve accomplished…take a deep breath and repeat!

Day 7: Move with intention!

Day 8: When opening your heart chakra you may feel a little lightheaded, but those are just pent up feelings that no longer serve you leaving your body…so feel it and let them go

Day 9: “In order to achieve your deepest backward bend, your body must be in alignment.”

In order for me to go in a direction that is not familiar or comfortable and the complete opposite of what I’m used to, everything must be in alignment and most importantly, my body. No matter what it is I’m trying to accomplish!

Day 10: “Would you rather experience pain for 10 seconds or for 10 years? It’s your choice!”

Day 11: “Don’t always look for it to get easier or be easier. Embrace the opportunity to dig deeper and find the strength within!”

Day 12: Don’t compare yourself to those around you or even how you did yesterday. Everything may not have been perfect today, but the fact that you showed up makes it that much better!

Day 13: Ice cold lavender scented face towels are the best things on earth!!!

Day 14: “If you can, you must!”

Day 15: Push pass the discomfort!

Day 16: “Look at yourself in the mirror and set your intention”

Day 17: “You are working on your concentration, determination, and discipline in order to uncover your inner strength”

“Meditation brings us to stillness so that we can find our true nature and your true nature is perfect and good”

Day 18: “We adjust to the obstacles around us, don’t ignore them. Recognize them and adjust”

“There is power in your own peace”

“Do not allow the ‘negative’ moments knock off your posture, become stronger because of them”

Day 19: “Inhale life rises, exhale life flows”

Day 20: “Stretch your body like a capital letter ‘T’ for tenacity!”

Day 21: “There is no judgment in the hot room”

Day 22: “Keep your intentions clear, even though the outcome will be different everyday”

“Our mind is what controls the body, focus”

Day 23: “Visualize your destination and go there!”

Day 24: Stay present in the room, if you allow you mind to wander you’ll end up set up for the wrong position

Day 25: Even though you’ve accomplished a lot, there is still room to go beyond!

Day 26: “Control your own situation, create your own reality”

Day 27: Press your way through!

Day 28: “Use your biceps, you’re stronger than you think you are!” In other words…sometime you just have to flex on ’em!!

Day 29: “Pay attention to what you tell yourself between the postures. Psyching yourself out builds your resistance. You’ll have all the skills you need to do what you need to do when the time comes to do it”

Day 30: Challenge yourself, set specific goals, execute, and…CELEBRATE YOU for loving yourself enough to push and stretch beyond what is now!!

I celebrated my victory with photo shoot for myself!  Because honoring yourself releases you to be able to honor the people around you.

A Gift for You:

I would like to help you do the same!  Let us know what you’ve done or plan to do to challenge yourself in 2017  in the comments below and receive a voucher valued at $290 to go towards a photo shoot with

R. Dione Foto!!

*Comment must be posted by June 30th 2017 to qualify for the voucher*

If you enjoyed this feature, be sure to subscribe below for future posts!

Image by: Jaxon Photo Group

Makeup by: @glamgal85

Follow Me on Instagram:  @rdione
 © R. Dione Foto 2017.  This post cannot be republished without permission.
  • Jennifer
    Posted at 13:27h, 15 May Reply

    Congrats! I’ve enjoyed following your 30 day journey, vicariously. Onto the next challenge!

  • Tiffany
    Posted at 14:42h, 15 May Reply

    I love this! Congratulations to you! I believe there are 2 gifts in this post, the life lessons listed as well as the opportunity for a photo shoot! I recently registered myself for a Kaplan review course for the GRE. Pushing past my self doubt and fears and applying to grad school! Thank you for sharing this experience!!

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 08:11h, 18 May Reply

      Every time you have a thought of self doubt, stop yourself and replace it with exactly the opposite of what it was! If you hear “I can’t do this” say out loud “I can do this, I am doing this, I have done this!” until that is all you hear. Thank you for sharing!!

  • Crystal Jones
    Posted at 03:12h, 16 May Reply

    Congratulations on your journey. I’m looking forward to my adventure of 21 days of healthy eating and exercise. My goal is to kick start a healthier, happier and stronger me.

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 08:08h, 18 May Reply

      It all starts somewhere and being clear and specific on your goals/intentions is a must. 21 days is the perfect kick start! Please resend me your email, the one listed is not working for me 😉

  • Alisha Glover
    Posted at 12:09h, 16 May Reply

    Super proud of you! And love what you learned! Meditating and yoga are something I have on my list as well (just a bit further down)! What I have committed to is budgeting and saving because I want to be a homeowner in 5 years. I’ve also made commited to goal setting, a struggle of mine🙄

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 08:07h, 18 May Reply

      Yes!! Home ownership! You totally got this, keep your eye on the prize and see yourself opening the door to YOUR home.

  • Ayisha Mumin
    Posted at 12:25h, 17 May Reply

    Great post! As a new mother, I am challenging myself to “disconnect”, taking on the difficult task of putting down my two cell phones, iPad and other electronic devices and choosing to instead give my daughter my undivided attention whenever she requires it. While I prided myself previously on being a great multi-tasker, I know these precious moments with her are irreplaceable and I don’t want to miss a thing!

    • R. Dione
      Posted at 08:05h, 18 May Reply

      She is blessed to have you as a mommy!!

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