yoga & boston

When I lived in Boston, I was probably the healthiest I’d been since living in DC. I used to walk everywhere I could, I was training for my first half-marathon and I was going to yoga at a studio called Sweat & Soul regularly. My favorite yoga class there was hip hop yoga — what’s not to love: A heated room, hip hop music, and a vinyasa flow. It was a great workout and I was going twice a week.

I have tried several yoga studios in my area since moving to the suburbs but none of them compare, so I get bored and agitated during my practice. I’ve managed to do a good bit of at-home practice but it’s just not the same; and my husband, surprisingly, is not impressed by my jacking up the heat to recreate a studio feel.

My husband was traveling for work a few weeks ago and I spent a lot of time thinking about how to get back to that level of health and happiness. I scoured the Internet, but was unable to find any hip hop yoga classes on Boston’s north shore. I looked in my immediate area and maybe 15 miles in every direction. The only hit was ONE yoga studio in Boston’s Copley area.

I checked out the yoga studio online and took them up on their free first week offer. I attended Friday night’s restorative class and yesterday’s hip hop. I loved both but if I’m being honest here, I found far more benefits than just the yoga classes.

The studio is in a bustling area of the city, so after class both days, I walked to a restaurant and grabbed dinner/lunch to go. I got to walk around the city for a little before heading back on the MBTA and going home. I realized as I walked that being in the city gives me another type of energy. I truly love walking around — it brings me a great joy! Another thing I realized was how much these classes can lessen my mental load.

Currently, I am the go-to for all questions in the household, but if I’m gone (and off the grid, as I am during yoga and was before/after largely), nobody can ask me any questions. As a result, I had 3-4 hours on Friday and Saturday where I just got to be, me. It really helped me feel energized and after discussing, my husband and I agree that this should be a big part of my weekly routine. So, I am hoping to get there Friday & Saturday and then Monday afternoon before class and Tuesday evening.

Now, I have to keep this in mind as I meal plan. With hot yoga, you shouldn’t eat within four hours of class, so I will miss a few dinners a week that I’ll need to figure out. I think want to make sure I’m budgeting to grab something at Dig Inn, Sweetgreen, Cava, or other counter service places that offer loads of veggies.

I was pleasantly surprised at how great it felt to have that much time to myself and how the simple act of walking and grabbing a bowl of beets, brussels sprouts, and apples could make feel so great. I am looking forward to more weeks like this and more walking around once spring/summer are upon us. (It’s tough to be too excited about logging miles walking during a New England winter.)

What kind of exercise or activity makes you feel joyful?


I’ve never been one for making resolutions, but I do like to set goals each year — primarily, I focus on a few categories of goals I’d like to make:

  1. Exercise: I use MapMyRun to track my exercise goals and am happy to say that I’ve met them the last two years in a row! This year, I’m sticking to more of the same — 3 cardio workouts a week; at least two of those will have weights and I’d like to get back to the yoga studio at least twice a month, but will practice at home 1-2x a week, even if it’s for 10 minutes. That’s at least four workouts a week, which seems doable. Ultimately, I’d like to work back up to six, but I’m setting reasonable expectations, especially knowing how much rebuilding of strength I’ll need to do.
  2. Diet: Eat a little cleaner. I am pretty good with my diet for the most part —  it doesn’t feel restrictive and that’s exactly what I need. We usually kick the year off with the Whole30 but sickness has kept me from it so far this year. I will try to be more deliberate about the 80/20 rule. I think we were pretty much on top of things until August when our kitchen needed renovated and we had to eat take-out/delivery A LOT. It was pretty terrible and while I didn’t gain weight, I did gain a healthy dose of laziness in the kitchen. I need to get back to making my healthy smoothies, daily eggs, and actual lunches.
  3. Technology: I’d like to be on my phone less. So, I want to start reading before bed, which is when I typically check my social media. I may erase social media apps from my phone for a bit so that I’m not tempted and just use technology when I’m on my laptop.
  4. Reading: I’d like to read for 10-15 minutes a night before bed while my husband gets ready. The kids read for 20 minutes a day (at least) and 3 is read to at least that long at nap and bed times. I figured I needed to be more deliberate about setting time aside myself.
  5. Writing: I love to write — I mean, it’s what I studied in undergrad — and it’s something that falls by the wayside year in and year out. I’d like to set aside at least 30 minutes a week to write, which I think is a reasonable amount of time.

So, those are my goals for 2019 — do you have any set goals?