I am still running, albeit in a keeping things ticking over kind of way, leading my GoodGym runs and with the odd parkrun here and there, to test myself. My knee is still painful and swollen, so I visited my GP recently and asked to be referred to a consultant (appointment in a month’s time). I have realised that I need to think long-term and look at activities that will support my running, by increasing strength and flexibility. You can see how I’ve been working on the strength aspect here and, to increase my almost non-existent flexibility, I’ve been doing some yoga and pilates classes.
Recently I was cycling through my local area and spotted an interesting-looking building with a big stylised water lily image and ‘More Yoga’ in big letters on the front. It didn’t look very open, so I kept on pedalling and looked it up online when I got home. It seems there are studios all over London and the reason it looked closed is because the studios don’t have a reception and just open during class times, thus keeping the cost down. They also have just a few changing cubicles and one loo, with pared back decor (which I quite like!) and simple styling.
I have been wanting to do pilates for a while, having studied it back in my dance days, but was struggling to find a class that was close enough to home but also fitted in with my schedule (there are some great classes locally, but not at times that work for me right now). I pondered the website for a while, before signing up to a ’20 days for £15′ offer and promptly heading to my first class.
Looking back over my class history, I can see that I’ve taken seven classes so far and I have enjoyed all of them. Each has been different (there are all sorts of yoga styles to choose from and a few pilates classes too) and all of the teachers have been great, really friendly, supportive and clearly experienced and professional (I like that they bring their own personalities into the class, giving each a very different feel). I would say my favourite classes so far have been ‘More Flow to Restore’ (which I did with snow falling outside last week!) and More Power Pilates, where I *really* worked out how to engage my core! Yesterday I was in a restorative session, using blocks, bolsters and blankets to support stretches that were held for around ten minutes each…blissful! The only criticism I might have is that the studio could be a little warmer, my hands and feet were cold and I think it’s important to feel warm when you’re moving into deep stretches (there are big blankets that you can wrap around you, which is helpful, but not always appropriate).
My 20 days will be up this weekend, so I need to decide whether I want to continue and sign up for a longer period. There are all sorts of membership offers (I’m a little overwhelmed to be honest!) and you can also buy a class pass, which can be used over a set period of time (I notice you can even get annual membership now, but I’m not sure I’m ready to commit!). If you want to find out more, click here and I would definitely recommend doing the twenty-day option, I have found it a great way to get a taster of the different teaching styles and see if I can fit it in to my schedule.