BYSJ member Lien Pham shares the story of her yoga journey.

How did you first discover Bikram yoga?

Knowing about BYSJ via an advertisement, I bought a Groupon in 2011. However, I didn’t activate it until a year later and only practiced once. I returned a couple of years later, bought another Groupon, and completed a few classes. With my third Groupon in January 2017, I finally committed to practice 20 times. I recognized the benefit of practicing hot yoga, so I signed up and became a member in the Spring of 2017.

What have you gained from your yoga practice?

You may have never known what you gain from this miracle of practicing hot yoga. In the beginning, I just followed the instructors in class. Day by day, I recognized my mindset was changing, feeling stronger and more confident. Flexibility and calm have come naturally in different situations.

Lien in spinal twist pose at the beach
Lien in Triangle pose at the beach
Lien in Standing Bow Pulling pose at the beach

What has been your greatest struggle or accomplishment?

At the beginning of practicing hot yoga, I struggled a lot. The 90-minute session was so long for both my mind and body. My greatest accomplishment was completing the 60 Day Challenge, which took three attempts. It’s said that “30 days will change your body, 60 days will change your life.” To me, it is true. I was so happy after my first time achieving the 60 Day Challenge, even though for the last two days, I had to practice three classes each day. My energy had increased, I completed things quickly, and my low self-esteem had disappeared. Since then, I have joined the 60 Day Challenge twice a year since the Spring of 2018.

What advice would you give new students or those struggling with their practice?

Be patient with yourself, stay focused on your goal, and never give up. Bikram Yoga helps to transform the body from the inside out.

What do you like to do outside of yoga?

Besides the hot room, I enjoy nature and hiking with friends on weekends to see beautiful trails in the South Bay. Cooking, baking, and gardening are hobbies that support my healthy lifestyle. Recently, I started practicing meditation and applying it to support myself in achieving yoga poses during class.