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When you hear the term “wellness,” you probably associate it with working out and eating healthy. And while fitness and a balanced diet are definitely part of it, wellness entails a great deal more. At the end of the day, wellness can be whatever makes you feel your best physically, mentally, spiritually, emotionally, and all things in between.
Do you find peace in meditating quietly on the floor for five minutes during the day just being? Or maybe it’s taking a long training run, a hot bath surrounded by your favorite scented candles, a high-impact studio class—you name it. No matter what you choose, the most important thing that makes your wellness, well…wellness...is that it helps you feel great.
If you happen to live or find yourself in Denver, Colorado, you’ll come to see that wellness is in great supply in the Mile-High City. After all, there’s a reason it’s ranked the 4th healthiest city in America.
Denver has no shortage of wellness opportunities. Whether you’re in search of some healthy eats, a great class or appointment, or the experience of the great outdoors—Denver's got you covered. The Queen City of the Plains has fresh air views and fresh new things to try to help you find your peak wellness (see what we did there?). Peep our guide below for some of the city’s best places and activities.
According to a recent Mindbody study, it would appear that a whopping 80% of residents in Denver work out at least once a week. It’s no surprise given the plethora of studios to suit almost any need, skill-level, and wellness passion. From spin and climbing to yoga and barre (and almost anything you want in between,) we’ve compiled your definitive guide to Fitness in Denver.
Located in the Sloan's Lake neighborhood of Denver, High Ride Cycle incorporates cardio, weights, and resistance to provide a full-body workout set to a combination of music, lighting, and mile-high energy.
Pearl Street Fitness is in a historic building with brick walls and high ceilings that draws in the pulse of the local neighborhood. You’ll never do the same workout twice and will keep your body guessing with the most dynamic workouts around.
TransFORM Colorado offers two types of classes: LaGree Fitness Method and Climbing. Lagree is a Pilates style that helps tone and elongate muscles done on the Megaformer, and their Climbing classes build stamina using the Versa Climber. These two, totally unique classes have one thing in common—they’re guaranteed to make you sweat.
The River Yoga has two studios located in the heart of Denver. More than a beautiful space, the River is a community, a place to grow, a hOMe. Their schedule is designed for every body and level—whether you’re a dedicated yogi or just starting out.
Meet your best with Barre Forte's kick-ass barre, sculpt, and HIIT fitness classes for athletes of all levels. They started in Denver and now have locations all around Colorado, and their fast yet effective classes will have you coming back for more.
Cheesman Park is a go-to for runners, dog-walkers, and power strollers. The rectangular, outer dirt path past Denver’s charming botanical gardens and the Grecian pavilion is 1.5 miles long and well-maintained.
City Park is not only stunning for cardio-lovers looking for new visuals, it’s also home to tennis courts, baseball, football and soccer fields, and two playgrounds (perfect for exercise with the right creativity). Plus, the Denver Zoo is inside the park so you can visit some four-legged friends afterward!
Denver’s historic “Wash Park” is a people-watching, dog-walking, and stroller-pushing paradise. The outside loop totals 2.5 miles, and signs throughout post fun facts about the park’s origins and history.
The South Platte River Trail runs right through downtown Denver. It cuts through Confluence Park, past Denver’s flagship REI store, the Pepsi Center, Empower Field at Mile High, and Elitch Gardens. You can stop off and explore downtown, or keep going and connect to the Cherry Creek Trail.
Denver, CO may not evoke the same luxurious prestige and haute chic-ness that SoHo or Beverly Hills does, but don’t let the mountainous terrain and outdoors affinity fool you: Denver has well beyond its fair share of spas and salons for you to get your beauty wellness on. In our latest travels to the Mile High, and in between our studio time and insanely amazing meals (more on this later), we checked out a few of Denver’s finest spots.
The Glam House Salon welcomes all types of clients: women, men, and children. They offer spectacular service and lavish amenities, such as wine, sparkling water, snack bar, and free parking to provide a luxurious client experience.
A New Spirit Wellness Center and Spa resides in the historic Highland’s neighborhood and offers customized bioactive treatments from friendly and knowledgeable staff. They specialize in Couple’s Treatments, Floatation and all forms of massage as well as cutting edge facial treatments.
If you’re looking for a mani-pedi in downtown Denver, Haven is the place to go. It’s beautiful, comfortable, and hygienic—pretty much all you want in a nail salon. They take time to get to know you, asking questions about what you like and saving your answers in their database for next time! Haven makes sure you get exactly what you’re looking for and keeps you coming back for more.
This Chicago favorite recently opened a location in Denver! If you want that summertime glow without damaging your skin, an all-natural airbrush from Glo Skincare is your best bet. They’ll recommend the perfect color based on your skin tone and tanning goals and leave you looking sun-kissed and fabulous.
Whether you’re planning to walk down the aisle, prepping for a photoshoot, or just strutting your stuff on a Saturday, BelViso can help you look beautiful for any occasion. They provide just about everything—highlights, haircuts, makeup, lash extensions, facials, waxing, you name it. So, no matter what beauty service you’re looking for, be sure to check out BelViso first.
Our friends over at Eater said it best, “There’s a little bit of everything in the Mile High City,” when it comes to the ever-expanding food scene. If you still think that Colorado prides itself on Rocky Mountain Oysters (if you know, you know), you’re going to want to give Denver another look. Chefs are flocking, neighborhoods are being revitalized, and crowds are coming: These are a few of the places you want to add to your Denver itinerary when you’re looking for healthy eats.
Modern Market is shaking up the notion that fast food is unhealthy. Their food is made with simple, whole ingredients purchased from local farmers, ranchers, and select suppliers that share their values. And the best part? It’s made in just minutes.
Just BE Kitchen is known for its paleo, clean-eating menu and seasonal options with year-round favorites (like their cleaned-up chicken caesar salad and green chili burrito). They’ve also got a bone broth bar, a legit lineup of bullet coffee options, and even a bar full of grain-free spirits and low-sugar wine.
Vital Root is one of the trendiest, healthiest spots to eat in northern Denver. Inspired by bold global flavors, it’s a veggie-heavy quick-service restaurant with a back patio that puts you in the middle of an urban garden.
A farm-to-table restaurant, Fooducopia sources most of its ingredients from its own 26-acre organic farm. They are passionate about quality ingredients, and their seasonal menu always reflects Mother Nature’s best.
Watercourse is Denver’s most popular fully-vegan spot, serving up the goods in Uptown. Their menu is comfort food heaven, pleasing just about any dietary restriction out there. Highlights include their all-day breakfast menu and their outstanding vegan desserts.
Remember when we said wellness is more than fitness and eating right? Well, this is what we were talking about. On our last jaunt to Denver, we sought out a few of those activities that, to some, may seem unconventional. To us, it was just an extension of the wellness we try to practice each day. “What the hell is forest bathing?!” you may ask. It's time you found out...
We meant it when we said wellness is whatever it means to you. It’s no secret that Coloradans love the outdoors, but the newest trend is something anyone can try. Forest bathing is all about slowing way down, trading elevation gains for slow-paced walks in the woods, and simply connecting with nature.
Where to do it: Anywhere with trees.
As one of the longest-running studios in Denver, Samadhi Center for Yoga offers a wide variety of classes—including asana, breath, and meditation—and workshops for all levels.
Two of Denver’s hot spots are connected by a pedestrian bridge that crosses over the Platte River. You’ll pass tons of shops, restaurants, and breweries in case you need a break from this mile-long stroll.
RiNo (short for River North) is home to Denver’s most creative businesses and artists—plus a ton of breweries and wineries. It’s “Where Art is Made” and is one of Denver’s most up-and-coming neighborhoods. It’s great anytime, but one of the best times is for its First Friday art walks from 6 to 9 pm on the first Friday of every month.
These mountains give a two-for-one deal that offers the perfect opportunity to hike a 14-er (14,000ft. mountain peaks). Although these are considered “easy” as far as 14,000ft. mountain peaks go, plan ahead, dress in layers, and avoid going hiking until summer.
With miles of rocky terrain, steep bluffs, and 1000-foot elevation change, you may be a bit intimidated, but the views are worth the climb. Feel the burn for a little over four miles before you enjoy the view at the top of Denver, Golden, the Coors facility, and the Continental Divide.
If you’re looking to elevate your heart rate, Denver has some of the most renowned activities, delectable food, and incredible views to take your breath away (in more ways than one).
And whether you’re a local looking for something new or visiting for the first time, you can get the best of Denver Wellness in your pocket with the Mindbody app. Give it a download, and start exploring the city on your time. Clear mind, good vibes, wellness forever.
Exploring Denver? Share your wellness adventures with us on social using #MBDenverWellness
If you’ve ever taken a hot yoga class, you know it’s always going to be one thing—outrageously hot. Not the “let’s hang by the pool and get that sun-kissed glow” kind of hot either. I’m talking that “I can't believe I have this much sweat in my body” and “I may or may not pass out” kind of hot. It’s nothing to mess around with, and after a year or so of not being able to go, it’s easy to forget just how serious that heat can be.
To get the maximum enjoyment and benefits out of your heated yoga classes, you need to prepare yourself before and take care of yourself afterward. Luckily, I’ve been taking some classes (sweating enough for the both of us) and I’ve listed my five favorite must-dos to help you readjust to your heated classes and get back to the hot yoga summer that we all want.
Heated classes are difficult in nature. The normal difficulty of regular poses is mixed in with the added challenges of sweating and dealing with the humidity and the heat (at times, I’ve seen the thermostat climb to 108 degrees—yikes!). Depending on what type of yoga class you’re taking (sculpt, Bikram, power vinyasa), the difficulty level and temperature are going to vary. It’s also important to remember that each person in the room is going to practice in a way that’s unique to them. Hours slept, hydration levels, food intake, and different lifestyles are all contributing factors that make our practices different. What you practice on your mat is your own––trust your body and only do what feels right to you. And remember, it’s okay to take breaks!
The rise in temperature mixed in with the humidity that we all know and love creates the perfect recipe for sweating—like A LOT. You go into a heated class dry and come out feeling like you just took a dip in the pool. Before heated classes, I had no idea it was physically possible to sweat that much. If you’re going to a heated class, especially after a long break, it’s easy to forget just how much you might sweat. Is it possible to lose that much water if you haven’t consumed it first? Trust me, going into your heated class super hydrated is going to make a world of difference and help you feel good throughout your practice. And don’t forget to take some sips of H2O while you’re practicing!
Heated classes are challenging, but I can’t stop going. Nothing quite compares to overcoming the challenge— and experiencing the cleanse my body feels after I’m done. It’s the perfect blend of hard and rewarding, but I couldn’t do it if my body wasn’t properly nourished. On the days I know I have a heated class booked; I like to make sure I am eating right. I make sure to take my vitamins and fuel my body with fruits, vegetables, and my favorite superfood shake. I hold off on food about an hour before my practice, so I feel comfortable. After the class, I like to replenish with a big protein shake (boosted with collagen to aid with muscle recovery and skin elasticity). There is no one-way path for properly nourishing your body but making sure you’re fueled for the challenge of a heated class is essential for getting the most out of your practice and feeling good on and off your mat.
Increasing and maintaining your water intake on the days you take a heated class is important, but sometimes you need something a little extra. If you’re sweating that much, you’re basically an athlete (at least in my book) and if you’re performing like a rockstar yogi, you need to hydrate like one as well. That means replenishing those lost electrolytes. Reward yourself and your body for the hard work and treat yourself to your favorite drink. I switch off between electrolyte-boosting drinks and coconut water depending on what I’m in the mood for that day. Adding these to my post-practice self-care routine has helped me feel more hydrated after and ready to take on the world again after especially sweaty classes.
Usually, a yoga mat is all you need for your practice––but heated classes are a different ballgame. I’ve gone with just a mat, and I’ve slipped all over the place. Let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than having sweat drip all over the place while you’re trying to hold a pose that makes you grip your mat for dear life (never again). Make sure you bring a towel to place over your mat, this will help with support and grip. Bringing a smaller towel is also a good idea. You can use the smaller towel to dry yourself off during water breaks or whenever you’re feeling just a bit too sweaty. This is a small step that makes a world of difference during those super-hot classes.
So, there you have it. Five of my favorite tips (more like lifesavers) that have helped me readjust to those heated classes I love so much. Getting back into it is a challenge for us all, so know you’re not alone. No matter where you’re at in your practice, remember to be kind and gentle to yourself––celebrating your health and your body’s ability to do what you love. We’re all just getting back out there, together.
Ready to jump back into your hot yoga routine? Browse Mindbody to find the perfect class for you.
While you’re at it, check out some Intro Offers near you that can help you get back to your cadence of hot yoga classes.