Monday, June 14, 2010

Hiking Yoga: Don't interrupt the social hour!

Many months ago a friend and I had purchased half off tickets to Hiking Yoga via Groupon, but weren't able to get our weekend morning schedules to sync up (bridesmaid responsibilities and debaucherous trips to Tahoe got in the way) until this past Saturday.  I woke up wicked early, threw on some yoga pants and sneakers (and my giant fuzzy hooded sleeveless parka; I loved this so much when I bought it, but when on earth is it ever appropriate to wear a giant fuzzy hooded sleeveless parka?  My caffeine-starved brain early Saturday thought "it's warm out, sleeveless sounds good" whereas the first thing Hiking Yoga leader Eric said to me was "are you going on an arctic expedition?") and headed off to the Ferry Building.

It was a perfect day to start off with some outdoor physical activity - one of those rare warm, sunny San Francisco days that make the cold and wet the rest of the year worthwhile.  Hiking Yoga is a lot of fun but I don't know that I would classify the hour and half we spent traipsing around SF and stretching as either "hiking" or "yoga."  The class instead consisted of walked briskly through the steep streets of North Beach, Russian Hill, and the Financial District.  We discovered many previously unknown (to me) expanses of green or concrete, with gorgeous views of the City, the East Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge, and even (because it was such a clear day) Mount Diablo way off in the distance.  At each of these spots we engaged in five minutes of light stretching and postures.  We stopped at Washington Square park and did a modified hokey pokey as an onlooker spontaneously joined in, and at the final stop (our second visit to Coit Tower) we stayed longer, trying a few sun salutations and partner poses as curious tourists took photos of us.

Eric, our friendly, easygoing leader who reminded me more of a personal trainer than a yogi (oh, that makes sense...I just looked up his bio and it says "I studied for 2 years at Coach U, the top training school in the world for life and wellness coaching."  I also discovered that apparently someone else shares my and Allison's love of jumping photos) kept trying to get us to pick up the pace, but clearly Daisy and I weren't the only ones using the brisk walks/climbs as an opportunity to catch up and gossip, albeit sweatily and breathlessly.  Whatever, we made it up to him when she and I sat our butts back down after the class was over to prove that we COULD do the pose we'd struggled with.  High fives all around!

I suspect that each of these classes is different depending on the weather and the group.  We had maybe four pairs of girlfriends and one couple, so it definitely took on a very social, informal tone.  But what a great start to a day spent (mostly) in the sun!  Especially when followed by a salmon sandwich with fresh homemade cream cheese, meyer lemon, capers, and onion on sourdough bread from Cap'n Mike at the Ferry Building Farmer's Market...damn, that was one of the tastiest treats I've had in a long, long time.  It's behind the Ferry Building, towards the back of the market stands...check it out!

Hiking Yoga
$20 drop in, $50 for 3 hikes

Image above stolen from an article on FitSugar.  Yeah, we didn't do ANY of those poses, trust me.  The tourists would've been floored.  Also, note to self - make sure safe search is on when google image searching "partner yoga"...there are some sights you cannot unsee.

No comments:

Post a Comment