What if I told you it was possible to go on vacation without deviating from your fitness goals?
This was a 2-part resolution for me. I wanted to start travelling alone and I wanted to do yoga in different parts of the world. Knowing that Seattle is one of the best places to do yoga in the United States, not too far from home, this was the perfect week-long trip for me.
From the top: I follow a paleo diet. My past experiences in travel included all-you-can-eat buffets at an all-inclusive resort, ice cream factories in BC and a lot of restaurants. All of which made me sick. There’s always something about a destination that dozens of your friends and colleagues are going to say that you “HAVE” to try when you’re there. You HAVE to try the chocolate lava cake here; you HAVE to try the deep-dish pizza here, etc. I assure you, my vacation was not any less pleasant for lack of trying the drive-in burgers. My first recommendation in getting your food right is staying at an AirBNB. It’s drastically less expensive and most of the time you will have access to a fully functional kitchen. It was fairly easy to find the public market in Seattle for some reason, so I meandered down and bought some fresh produce and seafood. I have to admit; cooking with fresh local ingredients was a lot more riveting than paying $30 for an appetizer at the rooftop bar. (But the view was GUHhhh) It also gives you a chance to connect with local people who are always eager to share their knowledge about the area.
Trip Advisor is a great tool because you can search for the best healthy restaurants and it will give you a top 10 list of places to try. Which is how I came across the delicious rooftop bar that robbed me. No names.
The next step is finding a gym pass. Most gyms can set you up with a travelers pass. Instead of paying $20 a day for gym drop-in fees, you can find a location close to your hotel/AirBNB and pay a flat rate for one week. I did prior research and found that 8 Limbs Yoga was one of the oldest most renowned studios in the city. In Sanskrit, the term Ashtanga translates to having 8 limbs or components. The physical practice of yoga is called Asana, which is the third limb. Within 5 minutes of talking to the woman at the desk, I knew this studio was about so much more than just the Asana and is rightfully named 8 Limbs. I loved that their approach was non-competitive. People tell me all the time, “I want to do yoga, but I’m not flexible.” and in a non-judgmental environment, none of that matters. We’re all there to learn, that’s why it’s called a practice. The studio does teacher training and some of the most highly regarded teachers in the area studied here. They had workshops on self-compassion, handstands, yoga for anxiety and depression, guest appearances from authors, and so much more. I was lucky to be close to the original location at Capitol Hill so there was a lot of history.
I did level II flow yoga with Andreas Fetz who was so great and let me take some photos of his favourite pose. (Photographed: standing visvamitrasana) To put this into perspective, I can’t even do that pose on the ground because I tip forward and break my wrist in half. So yeah. Before class, Andreas wanted to dedicate the class to cleanliness: Cleanliness not only with our physical bodies but also with our thoughts and being clear with our own intentions. It lined up perfectly with my intention of staying true to my healthy lifestyle in a time where we usually forget.
I was also able to practice from my room other days using an online class.
As for travelling alone, a lot of people asked me if I got lonely.
Not even once.
The great thing about being alone is not only doing whatever you want when you want, but you become a part of your surroundings. If I had a question, I could simply ask another human being – which is a new cool thing I’m trying. Because I had done way too much research beforehand, I had people thinking I was a local. With my buffoon-like sense of humour, I had to stop myself from pretending to be a tour guide just to see if someone would fall for it.
Overall, it was an amazing experience that I would highly recommend everyone tries once. It has inspired me to continue doing whatever I want all the time and to see what else this beautiful world has got going on.
By Kayla Roy