It definitely wasn’t my healthiest vacation, but sometimes we just need a few days to kick back and eat a lot of carbs. Am I right? Long story short: I have some detox work to do but I have no regrets.
The first was a fit crash at Village Yoga in Kennebunk, Maine – a small studio that aims to offer peaceful, friendly, and non-competitive yoga to residents and visitors alike.
I popped in for the Saturday morning Kripalu yoga class. I’m not typically one who loves getting up early on vacation, but the only class offered all weekend was this particular one – at 7:30 a.m. Luckily there was a large coffee and a day of beach napping ahead of me.
The studio is an easy walk or quick drive from Kennebunkport Village. The yoga room is located on the second floor. I slowly crept up the stairs and into the space, fully expecting a front desk and someone waiting to check me in and show me around. Instead, I found a quiet and calming entryway that led back to a bright and airy studio full of green plants and yellow paint.
Elizabeth, our instructor, welcomed me right away and showed me a small collection box where I could place my drop-in fee of $14. Another student came over and asked if it was my first time at the studio, offering to help me set up my mat and equipment. I looked around the room and noticed two other 20 somethings, three men, and a handful of women of various ages. It was an eclectic and friendly group with nary a lulu logo in sight.
Living in NYC, I think I get a bit jaded when it comes to studios. Fitness is trendy and cardio is the new party scene. Athleasure games are strong and kale smoothies are almost mandatory accessories. But a few moments at Village Yoga was just the grounding I needed to remember that yoga isn’t just about glow sticks and hip hop playlists (although, don’t get me wrong, I love crazy yoga trends) – it’s about a simple practice. One that is accessible, welcoming, and beneficial for everyone, no matter what you’re wearing or where you’re from.
If I had to describe the class in one word, it would be “easy.” Easy in that it wasn’t the most vigorous yoga class I’ve ever been to. But also easy as in that it was full of ease. Between the calming flow of Elizabeth’s instruction to the totally unpretentious air of the students around me, the class was beautifully easy. There was no anxiety over what I was wearing or competition to do the craziest balance pose. Everyone did the same simple poses, and for 60 minutes, life was easy.
What a gorgeous gift.
The second workout of my vacation was an evening interval run along the shoreline. After a few days of staying within the same square mile of beach and town, I wanted to do some exploring and always find that running helps me get my bearings in a new city while traveling. So I laced up and headed out, ready for wherever the road took me.
You know those workouts when you just need to turn the knob up to 11? Yeah – this was one of those. I was craving some intensity and cardio, so I took off for four miles of alternating fast/moderate pace. Along the way, I used the seawall for box jumps and the benches for pushups and tricep dips.
While the workout was exactly what I needed at the time, the most amazing part of it was the scenery. Rocky coastlines, gorgeous blue water, and a big fat golden sun just hovering above the horizon. It was high tide and beach families were closing up shop for the day, while a fresh wave of visitors took advantage of the few moments before sunset to toast the day, play fetch with dogs, or snuggle into a sweatshirt and watch the colors change.