Week 1 of Self-Care September went beautifully! I have taken a variety of classes so far, including a heated power yoga class. Brave- I know. Each class has taught me something new; whether it be about my body (limitations and breakthroughs), or about my personal yoga preferences and what I am looking for in a particular class.
Most classes were great, some not so great. I found that the instructors made a huge difference in my experience. I thought it would be fun, and helpful, to rate each yoga location I have tried and to include the rating it in my review portion of the classes. I will call this rating the “Zen Factor”, and it goes like this…
Class Ambiance + Instructor Awesomeness = Zen Factor (on a scale of 1 to 10).
In addition to really enjoying the classes I have taken so far, I am beginning to feel improvement in my flexibility and focus. Regularly participating in the practice of yoga makes me feel much more at peace, probably because it literally forces me to sit, be quiet and put effort into stilling my mind. Plus, I am the exact right kind of sore in all the right places. It feels amazing.
True to my word, all the classes I have taken so far have been completely free! Go me!
I first tried Trilogy Sanctuary, a new rooftop yoga studio located in downtown La Jolla. It is aptly named, offering gorgeous views in a unique and serene setting. I love this place to pieces. Every Saturday morning they offer a free community class suitable for all experience levels, and each class is taught by a different instructor. Varying the instructors offers a fresh perspective each time, giving me a chance to learn something new each time.
The Zen Factor was a 10/10. The views were breathtaking, an ocean breeze cools you as you flow through your movements, and I really enjoyed the instructors. I felt connected and at peace each class! The instructors were knowledgeable and moved at a comfortable speed, allowing beginners (like me) the time to transition and offering pose variations to more experienced practitioners.
Trilogy Sanctuary also features a cafe, where everything on their menu is 100% Organic, Vegan, and gluten free. After my first class, I gave the “Serenity” smoothie a try. It had Acai, blueberry, banana, almond milk, protein and goji berries. Yum. It was a little pricey, but totally worth it.
The cafe features a “Make a Wish” wall, where you can contribute your own wishes to the ones the yogis before you have already put up. I thought this added a creative and personal touch to an already charming atmosphere. I just wanted to hang out there all day!
In addition to Trilogy Sanctuary, I tried out Corepower Yoga. Corepower offers a free, unlimited week to new students. I took a heated power, and a beginner corepower, class.
Corepower is appealing because they have locations everywhere, and the facilities are very accommodating. They give you a complimentary mat and towel to use on your first visit (I didn’t use their mat, I brought my own), and they also provide locks for the women’s locker room. This allows you to keep your purse out of the way, and safe, while you yoga. I definitely appreciated this.
What I didn’t love about Corepower was the generic feel of the studios, and the fact that the foam blocks smelled like sweat. The instructors were decent, but the classes were fast paced. The pace made the instructors seem rushed- which made me feel rushed and didn’t allow me to connect with my form much. Zen Factor was a 3/10.
As for the heated power yoga…
I was terrified to try it. But, as I learned, it really isn’t so bad! The studio is heated to 98°F, which isn’t scorching like hot yoga is at 105°F. Don’t get me wrong- I was dripping sweat constantly and it wasn’t glamorous, but it was a great workout. I could feel the calories sizzling off of my body! The heat in the room aided in my flexibility, and helped me to move more deeply into difficult positions. The important thing is to stay hydrated and to go at your own pace- I was definitely guilt free every time I stopped to use my towel.
The benefit of Corepower Yoga is that it is more workout oriented, which is great for muscle toning and fitness. I felt I efficiently targeted muscle groups during these classes, and I definitely would go back to get my sweat on. Just don’t walk in there expecting spiritual healing, because Corepower ain’t it.
Overall, week 1 was a huge success! I am proud of myself for pushing through the classes, and for challenging myself to try something new. I also love the progress I can see, and feel. I can’t wait to discover what Week 2 will bring!
What is your favorite type of yoga class to take, and what do you like to get out of the classes you do take? I would love to hear your input!