Last weekend I dragged my sorry self out of my slumber and pondered down to The Lowry Hotel for one of their amazing mini-retreats.
The well-being experience includes a HIIT class, yoga, meditation and a buffet of healthy foods. The day is put into a perfect bite-size package targetting the world of busy lives and just generally what living in a city can feel like.
At just 3.5 hours in length, it’s the perfect way to break up your weekend and kick off the new week with a healthy and relaxing start.
Taking place in a conference room at The Lowry Hotel, the room is covered in workout mats and there’s a low hum of pop music to pick up your spirits and wake you up on a Sunday morning.
The two coaches on the day are bubbly, friendly and really welcoming, creating a bit of a family feel as this is most of the retreat-ers second or third time at the class.
The class begins with the HIIT class. Personally I’m a huge fan of HIIT, it goes quickly, you don’t get a spare few seconds to think about your life or worry about anything. All you have to do is focus on what you’re doing and waiting for that 15-second break.
In our HIIT class, towards the end, we were encouraged to team up with someone we didn’t know and were given two exercises such as squats and a lunge hold. While one person completed 30 squats the other had to hold a lunge and so on.
This particular exercise was my favourite. It makes you do it faster knowing that you’re putting this poor stranger through the serious pain of holding a glute bridge while you complete 20 burpees.
It’s also always better to do exercise with people, if for nothing else but moral support.
After the HIIT class, there was the option of a berry smoothie or a green looking one that I categorically always avoid. I heard people saying it was nice though.
Then it was time for the yoga. I do yoga every week so I found this class relatively easy and if you’ve never done yoga in your life I think you would enjoy it too.
The yogi instructor talks through every movement and tells you exactly which leg and where that foot should land, something which a lot of yoga teachers forget to do and it leaves you hanging upside down trying to look at the person next to you wondering if you’re in the right position.
The yoga session ends with a brief guided meditation and then the class tucks into a colourful and seriously healthy buffet.
There was a range of salads with so many healthy ingredients in I can’t even begin to recall what they all were.
Following this is a Q&A, giving everyone the chance to ask the professionals anything they’ve always wondered, like which way your toes should point in a squat or anything else you’ve always been a bit too afraid to ask.
The clientele of the class I would say was slightly older than me, in fact, my partner in the HIIT class was there celebrating her 50th Birthday. I obviously told her she should fire her friends for buying her fitness class and not a weekend in Barcelona but each to their own.
I have to say the seriously bright springtime sunshine we got seeping through the windows made the whole experience a hell of a lot easier.
The next Inspirit Mini Urban Retreat is on Sunday 5th April and tickets cost £45 per person.
The Lowry Hotel
50 Dearmans Pl, Chapel Wharf, Salford, Manchester M3 5LH