I do a good job of challenging myself most of the time. I think the older I get, I feel like maybe I have to prove to myself that I can take on some crazy physical challenges. Part of it, too, is that I wasn’t an athlete in high school or in my 20’s and am just now coming into my own in 30’s. I’m making up for lost time before my body shuts me down. Although, with my vegan diet, I don’t see myself slowing down anytime soon. I recover quickly and just continue to gain strength.
My latest challenge was taking a SUP (stand up paddleboard) yoga class with Awakened Yoga. I love water, but I’m not a huge fan of actually being IN the water, so I was really nervous about this. I was also nervous because the perfectionist in me knew that I’d have to let go on a paddleboard. I don’t fall regularly on land when I’m doing yoga because I hold back, but I felt a different sense of fearlessness and freedom on the board that I did not expect. Instead of being afraid to fall in the water, I just went for it…and falling in just made it more fun.
The entire experience was positive from beginning to end. Erin, the teacher, made us feel comfortable from the beginning by explaining very simply how to use the paddle, how to adjust it, how to maneuver on the board, etc. So, immediately, my fears of “How do I make it go?” were calmed. Yes, I worried about that. And, out of character for me, I jumped on a board first and was off. We got about 20 min or so to just paddle around the lake before the class actually began. I was surprised that I immediately LOVED it as soon as I got moving.
The class itself was an hour long Vinyasa flow, so there was comfort in knowing the poses, yet discomfort in rediscovering them on the board. Stances have to be wider and you cannot cheat without your abs and legs actively engaged. Poses that have become somewhat routine and “simple” on the mat took on an entirely new meaning on the board.
And, savasana on a paddleboard under the sun with only the sounds around you? Amazing. A entirely different experience. I love being outdoors, so to blend yoga and the outdoors…perfect combination for me.
After class, we had a bit of time to play with additional poses…tree and any balancing moves take on an entirely new feel on a paddleboard! And, my friend, Justin (aka ninja) and I busted out some super fun partner moves.
We closed the two hour class with a bit more free paddle time.
If you’ve ever considered SUP or are just looking for a new adventure, check out SUP with Awakened. Erin is amazing and truly made the experience one of the best times I have ever had! I will be going back for more without a doubt.