"My close friend Dina has been going to Mountain Yoga for 14 years. Despite my reluctance, she gently told me of her experiences, especially of her own reticence to go to Mountain Yoga with her friend, along with how difficult it was for her at first. Dina, knowing how much I've struggled with a neck injury sustained in a 1991 car accident, as well as fibromyalgia starting about ten years later, patiently waited for me to warm up (no pun intended) to the idea of yoga. As an overweight, middle-aged man, I also dreaded the thought of working out surrounded by lithe, youthful, and fit bodies. You see, she knows of some of what I've endured along the way in dealing with two herniated neck disks, and the chronic pain and exhaustion of fibromyalgia. There have been many examinations, specialists, MRI's, ex-rays, two painful nerve conduction tests, carpal tunnel surgeries on both wrists, examinations by specialists, physical therapists, massage therapists, acupuncturists, naturopaths, chiropractors, drug prescriptions, trigger point injections, epidural injections and less traditional treatments including emotional and faith healers, herbalists, remedies, goji berries and much more. I would've seen a witch doctor had I found one. None of them did more than temporarily relieve some of the symptoms. At some point, I quit chasing cures and simply accepted a much smaller, less fulfilling life, and learned to manage the pain and exhaustion as well as I could. Yes, I finally accepted Dina's sweet invitation and arrived at Mountain Yoga, naively unaware of what awaited, lol. After quickly checking in, Dina asked if I'd hydrated myself well, as she had suggested. Then she rather casually asked if I knew this was a hot yoga class. My stunned look was her answer. I thought, "What in HELL (pun completely intended) have I done?" Lovely Rebecca was my first instructor. Her gentle way led me from terror to peace. I'd not felt heat and humidity like that since living in Venezuela when I was 20. I'd not felt my body rebelling against such muscle stiffness and inflexibility ever. Slowly, I surrendered my body, heart, mind, and soul to drenching mindfulness and sweat. Before the class ended I knew I'd found what I'd long been searching for. Afterward, Dina and I walked and talked for about an hour. I marveled at how I felt. I had not felt that sort of youthful wellness since the car accident when I was 28, more than half my life ago. It almost felt like I was flying in the clouds. No narcotic ever felt a fraction so good! In the six weeks I've been attending Mountain Yoga, my practice has been a beautiful journey. I still feel and look like Jabba the Hut, but a much healthier, happier, and content Jabba the Hut. My friends and family see the increased energy, enthusiasm, and enriched liveliness that has resulted from this practice. My daughter in Idaho has started hot yoga now, and loves it! I have other friends contemplating, and to be honest, fearfully dreading this as well. As they see the changes in me, and a livelier twinkle in my eyes, I see their abject fears begin to fade, lol. I am gratefully indebted to Jackie, the entire Mountain Yoga staff, for their loving acceptance and guidance, and most of all to my dear friend Dina in helping me find all this. I look forward to continuing in this beautiful journey."