on september 30th, the people at yogaglo posted this challenge on their facebook page Several YogaGlo members will be starting a 30:30 challenge tomorrow and we'll be joining them. Who else wants to take thirty yoga classes with us in thirty days?
my comment to that was you mean 30 glo classes in 30 days, or classes anywhere? :)
and their response was Joni - 30 classes anywhere...at YogaGlo, at your studio, wherever you can fit it in.
that was all i needed to hear; of course i joined in! after all, i'd done a few yoga challenges before, and each time, it kicked up my yoga practice a notch because i'd always try to find a variety of classes that made the challenge much more, well, challenging. at least to me.
then earlier this year, yoga works posted a 31-day challenge on its facebook page, and i responded by taking the requisite classes with my favorite yoga teachers, making sure to throw in as many yoga works teachers as i could. after all, they wanted us to post our experiences on their facebook wall, so i thought it would be a nice way to give them some good PR love :)
so what's the theme i've given myself this time, you ask?
since there's so much yoga to be experienced here in LA, i've decided to scour the yoga scene and check out the different classes that are there for the taking. the more unusual, the better. so instead of following the crowds to the classes of the yogi celeb teachers, i'm going to find the obscure places and/or the up-and-coming teachers who could eventually become stars in their own right.
here's how i started my wild adventure on the yogaglo 30:30 challenge october 1st, class #1 - this was one of those times when i realized i had RSVPed yes to two events that were scheduled on the same day at the same time... and i really wanted to go to both, but obviously couldn't. so while everyone i knew was headed to the kirtan with jai uttal at the rose temple in venice, i ended up toting my yoga mat to a fundraiser yoga workshop a block away at exhale center for sacred movement -- partly because it was for a great cause, partly because i had chanted with jai and co. less than a month earlier at bhakti fest , and mostly because i didn't want to fail the yoga challenge on the very first day!
the "women's empowering workshop" was a fundraiser for yoga gives back -- who provides microfinance lending to women in india -- and was taught by cristi christensen, jo tastula, and isabelle du soleil. along with live music provided by joel virgel, the threesome led us through a lot of ab work, a lot of hip shaking, a lot of vinyasa flowing, and a lot of stretchy cooldown. at the end of class, we were treated to raw chocolate from rawvolution and acai juice from sambazon while we watched a short documentary on the work of yoga gives back (at that point, i snuck out to catch what i could of jai's set; i got there in time to hear thunderous applause blasting out the front door. luckily, jai stayed long enough for one more chant, so i was able to join in before they all called it a night!).
oct 2nd, class #2 - after spending the entire morning schmoozing with my running buddies after our weekly la leggers training run and the entire afternoon schmoozing with my cycling cohorts at the alt car expo , i got home and realized that it was too late for me to get dressed and back out in time for any of the group yoga classes near me. so i fired up my laptop and logged into my yogaglo account to find a nice gentle class. a nice short gentle class. and i found one: a 45-minute wake-up class with felicia tomasko (yes, i realize that i didn't need a wake-up at 6pm, but it met my criteria -- it was short, i hadn't taken it before, and i knew that felicia's class wouldn't get me all twisted up in knots).
the downside of taking a class in the privacy of my own home is that i easily get distracted by anything and everything. including the beeps from my phone that kept telling me that someone had just posted a comment on my facebook or twitter pages. i kept pausing the video feed to respond to the beeps, and before i knew it, my 45 minutes of asana had exceeded an hour. and i wasn't even close to being done! just then, a friend sent me a message, asking me if i wanted to join him at a yoga fundraiser party in manhattan beach. so while felicia continued to talk me through closing twists and savasana, i quickly threw on a dress and made my way out the door. call me a bad yogini, but when i found out we were going to genevieve fischer's fundraiser for off the mat, into the world , i knew i had a valid excuse for skipping out of class :)
oct 3rd, class #3 - it was a sunday, and you know what that means: FREE lululemon yoga!! after going through my options, i decided to hop on my bike and head for the lulu store in brentwood for charlie samos' class. by the time i got there, the class had just completed their sun salute warm-up and were about to move into standing sequences. i figured my uphill bike ride was the equivalent of a warm-up, so i found a spot in the back corner and joined in. while most lulu yoga classes are mixed level, i found this one particularly challenging because i ended up right beside the running clothing rack, and i couldn't help but glance at the merchandise every chance i got!
by the way, charlie teaches at yogis anonymous in santa monica. you can catch his class there without having to worry about being tempted by visions of attractive athletic apparel... and better yet, it's donation-based, so your wallet will be doubly happy!
oct 4th, class #4 - it was monday, so it was time for gayoga mondays with jeff bass . so what's so gay about gayoga?, you ask. nothing really, except that most of the students in his anusara-inspired class are gay men. and that part of the proceeds from the class are donated to the los angeles gay and lesbian center . i'd been to jeff's gayoga mondays class before, and each time i was the only female in the class. this time, though, not only was there another female there -- danielle white of sound synergy -- who was going to take us through a sound healing session during savasana, but there were two more from the lulu store in glendale who were there to take a class with their store ambassador. the extra estrogen in the class didn't change things any; it was still a nice sweaty class with the requisite arm balances and inversions. and an oh-so-relaxing savasana with danielle ringing her sound bowls to balance out our chakras.
jeff teaches his gayoga classes on mondays and thursdays at foresight studios, at the corner of sunset blvd and golden gate ave in silverlake. classes are usually $15 for the 90-minute sessions; this class was $20 because of the extra 30-minute healing session.
four days down, 26 to go. it's now 3am and i have plans to take a 9am class in the morning! gotta snooze... i'll keep you posted...