A few years ago I quickly realized exercise is the key to relieving stress in my life. But the realization only came in the absence of it. I had always had plenty of exercise growing up: I danced anywhere from 10-18 hours a week, went rollerblading, played softball with my family, hiked on the weekends. Then in college going to the gym was a social event, so I frequently visited with friends after class.
It was much more difficult to find time to workout when I started teaching in New Orleans. The new job was stressful beyond belief and I hardly slept, let alone exercised. Around the time I hit my breaking point I asked my roommate to start running with me. We would do a slow jog around Audobon Park and talk about how horribly our days went. Eventually I realized how much I missed the group atmosphere of classes, so I did a few drop in ballet, yoga and barre classes.
I’ve moved back to Rockville, Maryland now and it was a struggle to find a good exercise routine between my erratic schedule and trips. I ran in Rock Creek Park from time to time, but the weather got so cold last winter that I started looking for a good yoga studio. I’ve tried five different places and my favorite by far is extendYoga. It is the perfect place to reset my mind and body when I’m back at home.
What it is: extendYoga offers vinyasa yoga, hot yoga and flow yoga for mixed levels. While every class offers modifications it really depends on the instructor to set the tone of the class. I began with a community class – a great way to sample the studio for just $5 on Fridays – and kept coming back to try out the different instructors. Nina’s classes are a great way to wind down after work on Friday and TanO’s classes kick my energy (and butt) into high gear midweek.
How to get started: You can drop in for one of the $5 community classes on Friday to get a feel for the studio, although I highly recommend purchasing the $20 new student package to get 2 weeks of unlimited classes (that’s what I ended up doing). From there you can drop in as your schedule allows or get a monthly membership. Each time you bring a friend you’ll earn a free class. They also offer a great monthly rate for students (seriously, $50 for a month-long membership is unreal) and a discount for school teachers, active military and seniors.
Do you exercise alone or in a group? Have you figured out how to keep up yoga or any other exercise on the road? I’d love to know how!
While I still haven’t figured out how to exercise while I travel, I definitely rely on the routine when I’m home.