Tuesday, August 23, 2011

21 Days and CPY

I love yoga. I love yoga. I love yoga. I love yoga. I love yoga. No really I do.

It makes my muscles warm and tingly, my joints loose and happy, my mind calm and introspective and puts my soul at ease.

I was super excited when Jenna of Eat, Live, Run laid down the (incredibly flexible) gauntlet of 21 days of yoga practice, I was stoked.

4 days into the challenge, I took Eleanor (my road bike) for a 20 miler and a mere 100 yards away from my car I got into a fight with the edge of the sidewalk.

The sidewalk won. 

I never really realized how many of my favorite yoga poses either put pressure on my knees, or involve deep knee bends. I know my boo-boo doesn't that horrid in this picture, but it was really swollen and turned all crazy colors. It's just now fully healed.

Needless to say I didn't finish my 21 day pledge.

But I'm not here to whine about my lack of biking skillz. Nope. Instead I want to give a HUGE shout out to an amazing yoga studio I can't wait to visit again soon. Known as CPY to locals and College Park Yoga to everyone else this studio and their wonderful message has stolen my heart. And makes me long to move to Orlando that.much.more.

I'd never attended a "power yoga" class before, but I'd heard good things about CPY so I was excited to try it, even though I pretty nervous. I've never felt so welcome the moment I stepped into a yoga studio. From the first Saturday morning I hesitantly stepped foot inside the doors of the funky studio that is a beautifully remodeled showroom of some sort I just felt, well, loved.

I attended the Saturday Beginner Power Yoga class and it was worth every penny (and more) of the $15's I dropped as a "drop in student" (which is pretty standard these days, fyi). When I walked in this super sweet, super cute gal with the best retro glasses was at the front desk and helped me get all signed in and paid up.  "We are so glad you are here!" she exclaimed, like I was a regular at the studio. Totally put me at ease. Turns out that "cute gal" was Theresa, the instructor for the class!

The large studio has beautiful wood floors, awesome old glass garage doors for side walls, and the most amazing industrial ceiling fan.  The room was not heated like a Bikram or "hot yoga" class, but there was no A/C and than fan stayed off for the class. The class was popular, but not uncomfortably packed.

I really enjoyed the flow of the class, we started off with long, slow sequences that reminded me of my favorite Hatha classes with Denise, which then sped up into moving vinyasas as the class progressed. It got hot in the room and I was dripping left and right, but it wasn't that oppressive, struggle to breathe feeling I experience in Bikram classes. Instead, I felt warm from the inside out.

Theresa was amazing. Again, I loved how funky cool her attitude is, her voice reminds me of Lady Gaga's speaking voice (and you know I LOVE that!) and how she encouraged us to find our own edge. She came by and worked one on one with me 3 or 4 times during the 90 minute class. This was beyond standout to me because having attended many various studios over the past 4 years I've been practicing, most instructors will give you a wide berth the first couple classes to "feel you out" (or at least that is the vibe I've gotten).

At the end of the class, as we sank into a much earned shavasana, Theresa encouraged us to radiate our beauty from the inside out by being kind to everyone we meet. Now this is going to sound crazy, but I really feel like I have been doing that ever since that first class. I'm smiling more and trying to make others smile too. Feels.so.good.

As we filed out of the cooling studio, Theresa was in the lobby, chatting with students, joking with the regulars, congratulating students on achieving a new pose. I simply wanted to say "Thank you" and when I caught Theresa's eye, she grabbed me into a giant hug (I'm totally an aggressive huger, so this was perfect!) and told me how wonderful my practice had been. I thanked her for working with me and she said "Girl, you made my job easy!" So.much.love. So much!

So, that is my CPY story and I'm sticking to it. If you live in Orlando or are traveling through, go see Theresa (or any of the wonderful instructors), you won't regret it.

Love to all,
~the "I'm ok with the fact both of my favorite yoga studios are over 2 hours away" gal, Jess


Rachel Wilkerson said... Best Blogger Tips

That class + the whole atmosphere sounds amazing! I wish I had taken up my new yoga habit before the whole 21 day challenge started but oh well...I'm loving it anyway!

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