ride the wave.

if you think you’re in good shape, try surfset and prepared to be humbled.

now, let’s not get it twisted: i do not put myself in the group of people who believe they are in moderately good shape.

i’ve grumbled on twitter many-a-time about the wave-shredding workout on land, but after a six-ish month hiatus, i got myself back on the board last weekend thanks to illume hot yoga and the blog squad.


the mission: 45-minute class.

the equipment: surfset board (aka surfboard atop some bosu balls, attached with cables).

the challenge: don’t die.

our private surfset class at illume hot yoga was organized by alison and brie – thanks ladies – and since everyone in the class was new to the board (except me, but as we discussed, not great shape) our instructor gave us a taste of each of their four signature classes: balance (yoga-inspired), burn (high-intensity, high-tempo), build (strength and definition) and blend (interval-based core session).

no matter the program, each is structured in custom intervals to shock body systems and create real change, whether you’re interested in improving stability and body control, burning fat, building lean muscle or achieving total body fitness.

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we were put through squats, lunges, tricep dips, push ups, surfees (burpees on a surfset board), hop overs, quick feet and more on the board. to my delight there were minimal pops ups (from stomach, popping up to surf stance) and all left to the end. have tight hip flexors and a tummy, and you try to tell me pop ups are a fun things to do! they aren’t. almost as much fun as surfees.

surfest is a tough and efficient workout. you’ll be sweating within the first few minutes, and probably dripping by the time the 45 minute class is done. it is a great way to try something new, get out of your comfort zone and challenge your fitness level. your core strength will benefit almost immediately…or at least you’ll feel your abs for a few days.


how adorable are these shirts ange got us made? big thanks to katie at chase this skirt, too! they have our instagram handle on the back, in case you didn’t know where to find me all over the web.

i swear one of these days i’ll rank higher than that other laura bridgman…the actual first deaf-blind american child to gain a significant education in the English language – step aside, helen keller. but i will tell you, it adds a great deal of mystery to anyone trying to google me. am i the lady born in 1829? who knows! am i only ever photographed in black and white? might be!


while i wouldn’t regularly travel to the north pole (evanston, in nw calgary – yes, i’m a 17th snob) for a fitness class – especially when there is a surfset studio less than 400 m from my condo –  illume hot yoga was an incredibly beautiful space with great instruction. if you live in the hood or find yourself up that way, you should really check it out. the surfset classes are limited to 10 people, so you’ll always have a ton of attention, and their hot yoga studio is cozy, warm and so inviting.

i still have eight classes on a drop-in pass for surfset, so i know i’ll be on the board again. i’ll swear through each class, hurt the next few days, and reap the benefits of regular, challenging exercise. i just really wish i could leave a surfset studio without feeling worse about me as a person. it’s just not a confidence-inspiring workout for me.

let’s keep it simple:

is it a good workout? yes!

is it for me? medium to no.

have you tried surfset before? do you travel for fitness classes?