I had a special yoga class last week. Why special? Because it had probably the best view of London you can ever get. High up on the 52nd floor in Shard, the class was organised by Elle UK magazine and led by the lovely Jessica Skye from Fat Buddha Yoga.
I got my first glimpse of the view when I stepped out on a 52nd floor from the elevator. It was stunning! The city still covered in darkness with millions of lights on, framing the contours of the buildings. I heard a silent ‘wow’ behind my back – it looked like I was not the only one admiring the view while waiting for the class to start.
Very soon we were invited into the room where the class was taking place. I managed to grab a spot straight in front of a huge window, with views stretching all the way to the horizon, revealing slightly golden sky from the rising sun.
The class started by setting an intention. I promised myself to be more mindful and present in the moment as juggling so many things in life leaves my mind in a total chaos. Next we moved into a plank to warm up our bodies for what’s coming up.
The class was a fast paced vinyasa flow focusing on stretching out the tiniest muscles and releasing tension. Jessica’s classes are easy to follow, combining simple poses with slightly advanced ones to achieve the perfect mind and body balance. All of that topped with great tunes playing in the background, as Jessica is also a DJ. To be honest, I have never done yoga with chilled house playing in the background. It sounds unusual, but trust me, it’s actually really fun and energising! You should also check her other playlists on the Soundcloud.
Yoga was a great start to the day. At one moment I was in Warrior Two pose, looking through my fingers at the view in front of me: the whole London stretching as far as I can see, the horizon, the rising sun, the tiny trains snaking into London Bridge station…
That very minute my concentration level reached the point where everyone around me vanished. It was just me, my breathing and the view. Was I meditating? I’m not sure what that was but it felt amazing. Relaxing and calming. I was brought back to the present by gentle instruction to move to Reversed Warrior and after that we slowly cooled down. The class ended with sweet savasana, during which my body completely sunk into the ground. Or 52nd heaven, if I may say.
After the class we grabbed a quick breakfast from the bar (I was slightly surprised to find no vegetarian options on the wraps and sandwiches plate) and I had to rush my coffee down as I saw the perfect moment to chat with Jessica. We talked for a bit about all things – yoga, healthy lifestyle and managing two jobs:
What does healthy lifestyle mean to you?
For me a healthy lifestyle means having balance… There are obviously factors – eat your greens, healthy carbs, cut down on salt, processed sugars, wheat, gluten etc., as well as keeping active. As important as those things are I believe it’s so important to have the right balance of work and play, alone time and seeing friends, to make sure you’re happy. As long as you feel good and you’re happy you’ll make the choices to be healthy as well as have more energy and be more interested in trying new things and doing whatever it takes to keep you feeling great.
You are a DJ and a yogi – two very different professions, which sometimes require working late into the night and then getting up early for classes. What is your secret to looking fresh and feeling full of energy every day?
Espresso… and juices / smoothies packed with super foods and nutrients not to mention foods that fuel. It also helps that I love what I do so even on minimal sleep I never dread work.
What is your favourite yoga pose and why?
Handstands – because they are awesome fun!
What advice would you give to those who realised their current job is not what they want to do for the rest of their lives and want to take up a career in teaching yoga?
I’d say…. #justdoit
What is your favourite tune to practise yoga to?
I have loads – I like playing house music in my sets, you can get an idea of my yoga soundtracks here.
We also took quite a few photos – I was amazed at how easy it looked for Jess to flip into a handstand, then gracefully move to bridge and finally get back to a standing position!
And then it was time for me to rush to work! On my way out, I also received a lovely goody bag in which I found a Yoga Goodness Journal, Sweaty Betty yoga mat strap and a Liquid Yoga restorative bath soak. Can’t wait to start using all of them!
Thank you Jessica and Elle UK magazine for the lovely start to the day!