Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Thoughtful Packing

Yesterday I took a long walk on the Ocean Edge beach that runs along the bay in Brewster.  As you can see, even on this typically busy weekend morning I had most of the beach to myself.  This is the beauty of the Cape in the fall, and I look forward to enjoying this same stroll with you in just under three weeks time.

Many of you have asked me what you should pack as you start to organize yourself for the weekend.  Here is a quick list of my thoughts.  Please feel free to be in touch if I have not answered any specific question you have on this topic.

-  In terms of yoga gear, I will supply all of the props you may want for your active and restorative practice.  By all means bring your own yoga mat if you prefer, however, one will be supplied for you if you'd rather travel light.

-  I think the most important aspect of the weekend is that you are comfortable.  Since we have no idea what the weather will be, or to what extent I will be able to control the climate inside our meeting room, I suggest you come prepared to dress in layers.  Yoga class may get warm during our active practices, however, an equal amount of time will be spent moving less heat through the body.  So give yourself plenty of options during our class time.

-  Our morning yoga class will begin at 8:30a, and it is always suggested that students refrain from eating two hours before a yoga practice.  That said, when I practice early in the morning I often have a cup of herbal tea or a piece of fruit an hour or so beforehand.  I have learned from my coffee-drinking yoga students that denying oneself caffeine before your practice is not always a good thing.  So if you like to eat upon rising, pack your favorite morning beverage, some fruit or light snacksIf you will be getting up at 8:10a for our 8:30a class, then have a long glass of water, a cup of tea or half a cup of coffee.  The Ocean Terrace restaurant is located on the ground level of the mansion where we will be meeting, and you can buy a cup of coffee there if you don't want to make one in your condo.  We will have brunch right after yoga class, where Starbucks Coffee will be served, along with decaf, herbal teas, fresh fruit and a full breakfast.

-  Early mornings and afternoons will be open time for you.  If you think you may want to spend time on the beach, then by all means bring a windbreaker or even a heavier coat.  Before I went to the bay yesterday, I was a Nauset Beach on the Atlantic.  The difference in temperature between 9:30a at Nauset and noon on the Bay was about twenty degrees.   The coat you see tied around my waist in this photo was buttoned up to my chin while I was on the other side of the Cape.  Since you are all driving in for the weekend, don't hesitate to throw that winter jacket in the backseat just in case.  I walk the beach all year long, and the ability to keep warm makes the difference between a blissful stroll and a forced march.

-  You may want to bring your journal or some other small item that represents what you would like to let go of, or what you would like to more fully engage with.  This is not required, but sometimes it can be incorporated into your weekend and enhance the experience.

-   At the risk of sounding corny, the most important thing you can pack is your willingness to let go and engage with new and different ways to think about yourself and your life.  Yoga helps us connect with our body to give her a larger voice in how we see our world.  But as humans with thinking minds, everything usually begins and ends with our thoughts.  So set your intention to be open to whatever comes up during the weekend, and try not to let the mind decide what the outcome should be before you leave the driveway.

Please feel free to email me if you have any other questions about preparing for the weekend.  My sense is that you all have good sense.....so follow that and you can't go wrong. 

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