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Best Local Things to Do

October Health & Fitness Classes in New Orleans

Enjoy a free meditation class in City Park's Japanese Garden. (Photo: Rebecca Todd)

October brings the type of southern weather that we’ve been waiting for: low humidity, cooler temperatures, and sunny skies. This month features workouts that allow you to enjoy the outdoors, from biking a 26 mile route across the city, to running races along the bayou. For those looking for a more relaxed workout, try a rooftop yoga class or meditation in beautiful botanical gardens. If you’re in need of a light bite afterwards, check out our guide to healthy eating in New Orleans.

The Troubador Hotel rooftop (Photo: Rebecca Todd)

Rooftop Sunrise Yoga at the Troubadour

Enjoy dawn yoga perched atop a gleaming skyscraper in the heart of the CBD. Brought to you by NOLA Tribe Yoga, classes will take place on the rooftop of The Troubadour Hotel, a sleek, modern hotel that boasts panoramic views of the city. Enjoy Savasana with a cold lavender towel pressed over your eyes and sip on a post-class coffee to energize your day. Mats are available to rent for $3, and space is limited to 25 people, so make sure you reserve your spot in advance.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29, 7-8 a.m.

Where: The Troubadour Hotel New Orleans, 1111 Gravier St.

Cost: $5

Head to Deutsches Haus across from City Park for a 2-mile race in honor of Oktoberfest (Photo Courtesy of The New Orleans Track Club)

Oktoberfest Run & Walk

Kick off Oktoberfest with a 2-mile run and walk that starts at Deutsches Haus on Bayou St. John. Race registration includes access to the festival that day, plus one other day of your choosing. You’ll also receive complimentary beer and refreshments at the finish line. Deutsches Haus hosts Oktoberfest events throughout the month of October, so make sure you head to their website to see all the details.

When: Saturday, Oct. 5, 4:30 p.m.

Where: Deutsches Haus, 1700 Moss St.

Cost: $35

Start your Saturday morning with a peaceful Paddleboard yoga session on Bayou St. John (Photo courtesy of NOLA Yoga Loft)

Paddleboard Yoga

NOLA Yoga Loft and Bayou Paddlesports have partnered to host Saturday morning classes on the tranquil waters of Bayou St. John. After receiving a paddleboard safety lesson, you’ll enter the water and paddle through the bayou for 20-30 minutes. Then, you’ll anchor your board and perform a series of yoga poses led by local teacher Tara Loftis from NOLA Yoga Loft. At the end, enjoy meditation atop the gently bobbing bayou. Advanced reservation is required, and make sure you wear clothes that you don’t mind getting wet.

When: Saturday, Oct. 5 & 19, 9-11 a.m.

Where: Bayou Paddlesports, 1101 Florida Ave.

Cost: $45

Goat Yoga in the Garden

Practice yoga while Cameroonian pygmy goats prance around (and even on) you. This is the experience you’ll have when you sign-up for Goat Yoga with Move Ya Brass in Paradigm Gardens, a verdant oasis filled with vegetables and flowers. You’ll also receive complimentary baked goods and coffee from local eatery Gracious Bakery. Make sure you sign-up in advance; this class often sells out.

When: Sunday, Oct. 6, 9 -10:30 a.m.

Where: Paradigm Gardens, 1131 S Rampart St.

Cost: $30

Yoga at Wrong Iron

Head to this hip outdoor beer garden every Tuesday for yoga followed by drink specials. Located in the Lafitte Greenway, Wrong Iron has gorgeously carved wooden rocking chairs and tables, plus shady oak trees and a generous menu of beers, cocktails, and wine. Classes take place outside in the parking lot so you can easily slip inside after for happy hour. Hosted by Soulsquad, a collaboration of local yoga teachers Mark Berger and Rachelle Arnold Carpenter, this vinyasa yoga class will be fun and filled with great music.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 8, 15, 22 & 29, 6-7 p.m.

Where: Wrong Iron, 3532 Toulouse St.

Cost: $5

Meditate in City Park’s Japanese Garden in New Orleans (Photo: Rebecca Todd)

Free Meditation in the Japanese Garden

Turn your hump day around with free meditation each Wednesday in the Japanese Garden in City Park. This small garden is impeccably landscaped with cobbled paths, shaped shrubbery, and a raised wooden pavilion. Balance Yoga & Wellness, a yoga studio in Mid-City, is hosts classes throughout October. Afterwards, stroll through the neighboring botanical gardens and soak in the gorgeous greenery native to the south.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30, 6-7 p.m.

Where: New Orleans Botanical Gardens, 5 Victory Ave.

Cost: FREE

Bike the Big Easy

New Orleans is a perfect city to explore on bike, and on October 12, certain streets will be closed off so you can ride unencumbered. This 26 mile course covers beautiful parts of New Orleans from the French Quarter to City Park, and finishes with an afterparty. Bring your own bike, and make sure you sign-up in advance as there won’t be event-day registration.

When: Saturday, Oct. 12, 7:30 a.m.

Where: Duncan Plaza, 331 Loyola Ave.

Cost: $45

New Orleans Wine and Beer 5K Run/Walk

The name says it all: this 5K starts with an invigorating run and ends with drinks and socializing in Wrong Iron’s outdoor beer garden. The race weaves through the Lafitte Greenway, and as you cross the finish line, you’ll receive a custom beer or wine glass to fill with complimentary drinks. Like all New Orleans road races, you can expect delicious food, a commemorative race shirt, and a great after-party.

When: Saturday, Oct. 19, noon

Where: Wrong Iron, 3532 Toulouse St.

Cost: $25-50

11th Annual Jazz Half Marathon, Half-Marathon Relay & 5K

This race benefits Children’s Hospital and has a few different course options so there’s an appropriate distance for everyone. You can run the full half-marathon or partner with a friend to run it relay-style: one person run 7 miles and the other 6.1 miles. You can also opt for the 5K. The race starts in Lafayette Square, travels down oak-lined St. Charles Avenue and Audubon Park, and heads back to the starting line where Mardi Gras Indians and live music will greet you.

When: Saturday, Oct. 26, 7 a.m.

Where: Lafayette Square, 602 Camp St.

Cost: $40-$115 depending on race distance. Find our more here.

Cuddle puppies while you do yoga at the Renaissance Arts Hotel (Photo courtesy of April Dupré)

Pups & Poses

Enjoy a yoga and Pilates class packed with adorable puppies frolicking between mats. This unique class benefits Take Paws Rescue and will kick-off in the Renaissance Arts Hotel’s gallery that’s filled with brightly colored paintings. Footprints to Fitness will lead you through a high-energy class with ample breaks to pick up and cuddle puppies. Kids are welcome, just make sure to buy a ticket for them. Make sure to bring your mat.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 30, 6:30-8 p.m.

Where: Renaissance Arts Hotel, 700 Tchoupitoulas St.

Cost: $21

Yoga, Pilates & Dance Classes at Hotel Peter & Paul

Each week, donation-based yoga, pilates and dance classes take place in the “church” at Hotel Peter & Paul. Once an actual church, and now a beautifully renovated event space, this venue boasts cathedral ceilings, graceful arcades, and stained glass windows. Catch a pilates class each Monday and Wednesday at 10 a.m. with Julie Schexnayder, or a yoga class each Saturday at 9 a.m. with Tyler St. Jean or Catherine Burke. An all-levels dance class occurs each Monday at 6:30 p.m., led by Kai Knight. After class, grab a coffee or cocktail at Elysian Bar, the hotel’s bar, restaurant and cafe.

When: Classes take place each Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. See the full calendar here.

Where: Hotel Peter & Paul

Cost: Donation based

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