Well, it’s confirmed. I have a slight fear of heights, especially when going upside down. The view is utterly breathtaking however, getting my body to go upside down (which I can do under normal circumstances in two seconds) took me what felt like ten minutes even with a small group cheering me on from the sidelines. Holy shitballs. Once I finally got my Uggs over my head, I found a building many, many, many feet below me and just stared. I eagerly waited for someone to say they got a good shot so I could get my ass back to safety. It was, for sure, one of the most thrilling things I’ve ever done. I’m not your typical adrenaline junkie, but I find that once I do step outside of my comfort zone – I really do like a bit of thrill. This was both thrilling and terrifying. Not going to lie, I totally thought for a moment, “Well, at least I’ll die doing something I love.” Alas, I lived! Thank God. Seeing the city from that high up, upside down was extraordinary. I know not everyone anticipates the arrival of a Chicago winter with excitement, but I love it. Last year at Yoga Six, on what was to be the coldest day of the year, a student walked in as we were chatting about the frigid temperatures and said, “I don’t mind it, it makes me feel alive.” Ever since the moment I heard her say that simple sentence, I haven’t been able to shake it. I can’t agree with her more and I didn’t even realize it either until she said it. Looking outside the Skydeck at the cold Midwest weather and snowcapped Chicago skyline, I was again reminded. These short minutes in a glass box 103 floors up and teaching over hundred yogis on the 99th floor had me feeling extra in the feeling alive department. It was sincerely one of my favorite mornings of the year. Here’s how it all went down. And PS. if you’re bummed you missed this bad ass event (I would be…) worry not, Yoga Six is hosting six more next year. The first one will be in January – so keep your eyes and ears open.
Here’s what our girl Willis looks like from my side of town as winter weather begins to set in. Isn’t she freaking gorgeous? That vibrant orange tree she uses as an accessory doesn’t hurt her cause either.
Here’s what you see when you first arrive for class:
Makes for the perfect photo opt.
I love our city. She can be a real pain in the ass sometimes, but I do love her.
When we finally got up to the Skydeck it was time for some incredible city views, visits with friends, headstands and nervous diarrhea vibes. Yup. The phobia is real. The persuasion, support and help from my forever roommate begins.
Anthony: “Ok, got a good one.”
Here are some other things you can do on the Skydeck. Here are two beautiful yoginis, Madeline and Kim getting their cool-ass yoga shot in the sky.
My girl Erika and me. I met her at Yoga Six when I first started there. Let’s just say she was wearing a choker, a big furry coat and somewhere on her was leopard print. It was basically love at first sight.
I’ve been friends with and teaching Wendy since I first started teaching in 2009. I loved that she wanted me to come into that “box of fears” for support as I needed it just as much as she. She was braver than me – handstands in the Skydeck got a “nope” from me at the moment.
My inner dialogue: “Oooookayyy, at least we’ll both pass away doing something we loved. Also, please don’t fucking kick too hard. Please?”
A good old fashioned Warrior II and a top knot.
Time for class! I’d be lying if I said this experience didn’t bring me back to my entertainment reporting days and make me miss it a little. I mean, I can gab and shoot the shit on a microphone all day long. It was good to have that feeling again. By far, teaching this class on the 99th floor to some 150 yogis, along to my favorite tunes (including, but not limited to Do You Think I’m Sexy, Dog Days Are Over and Lake Shore Drive) was the coolest class I’ve have had the opportunity to teach. Before it started, I was telling my friend Rose that I was pretty nervous on the ride over to the tower. Back when I worked at Arlington Park as a reporter, I would go to the women’s bathroom and pace in the stall listening to Neil Diamond’s Holly Holy. So, I put in my headphones. I don’t know what it is about my guy Neil, but he and that particular tune always get me grounded. It works like a charm. I was on cloud nine after this class. It went well and people looked happy. That’s plenty for me.
After class, I had just enough time to visit with some of my favorite humans, take in the view from high above and enjoy a mimosa before it was time to teach a couple more classes.
My girl, Rose. You’ve seen her pop in the blog before – she’s real good people.
Here is my favorite yoga tribe: Kathy, Heather and Melissa representing UIC.
My best attempt at an Ellen Degeneres selfie with all the yogis in all their glory!
And then there’s this guy, who seemed just as excited as me for this event. Helped with my playlist, woke up early as hell on a chilly Saturday morning and drove us to and from the event. I’d also see him hop off his mat to catch photos so I can use them for the blog. He’s my one-man entourage and I love him for all of the immense support he throws my way. He’s so cute–I want to punch him in the face.
PS. For the yogis that loved my glitter – this is the brand, Festy Besty.
Stay tuned for more news on more Get Elevated events – trust me, you want to get to one of these. Visit Yoga Six for more information.
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