If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you may have seen me mention a retreat I went to over the weekend. A few weeks ago, my good friend Lydia of Hatch Health & Happiness told me that two of her health coaching friends, Liz of Siena Wellness and Claire of Claire Mariel Health, were hosting their Be Beautifully Nourished Spring Renewal Retreat and asked if I wanted to go with her. She said it included a yoga class, a healthy lunch, and information about nutrition, clean foods, and healthy living.
Yoga to start the weekend? Sign. Me. Up. I used to go to yoga classes pretty regularly but stopped going around the time I got married. Things were so crazy right before the wedding that I took a break from yoga and haven’t gotten back into it. I’ve continued exercising regularly and have been into Pure Barre since last summer, but yoga hasn’t made its way back into my routine, so I was really looking forward to the yoga class.
Before we even got to yoga, we had a yummy detox juice to start the day. I’m not a juicer, and when I see a juice that’s bright green, I can’t help but think, “Dear god, please don’t let this taste like kale!” But it didn’t! Yay! It was so yummy and a great glassful of energy to get the day going as we talked about our goals for the day and set our intention for our yoga practice.
The yoga class, led by Liz, was 75 minutes, and it was amazing! It felt so good to do yoga again, and Liz is an excellent instructor. She’s taught more than 1,000 hours of yoga, so she definitely knows what she’s doing and was able to tweak our poses to help make sure our alignment was good and that we got the most out of the class. She teaches at a few studios in the area, which unfortunately aren’t very close to where I live. If they were, I would definitely go to her classes!
The day wasn’t only about yoga though. Claire talked to us about the lymphatic system and how important it is to make our health (physical, mental, and emotional) a priority. She also led a discussion with us about goals for the next week, three months, and six months, and she encouraged us to think about self care and to make time for ourselves, even if it’s just a few minutes each day. The part of Claire’s discussion that I found the most useful was about letting go of negativity and criticism. It is a daily challenge for me to turn off the running commentary I have in my head about everything I feel like I’ve done wrong or haven’t done well during the day (or week, month, year, decade, life … take your pick). It was refreshing and liberating to hear that I can (and should) let go of all those thoughts, which never really do me any good anyway. I know I’ll continue to struggle with this, but letting go even for a little bit or for a day or two is a step in the right direction. It’ll just take some practice and likely a lot of pep talks.
I can’t talk about this fabulous day and not mention the delicious food. As they say on so many cooking shows, you eat with your eyes first, and the lunch that Claire and Liz had prepared for us looked so yummy and beautiful! We put together our own detox salads, and I filled my bowl with fresh greens, quinoa, black beans, tomatoes, avocado, and hard-boiled egg and topped it off with a mustard vinaigrette dressing. Eating fresh rather than processed foods is so satisfying, and our lunch was filling without making me feel uncomfortably full.
We finished up the day with encouraging words for each other and mixed together our own lavender body scrub, which was part of the goodie bags Claire and Liz gave to everyone who attended. Here’s a pic of what was in our bags, and I can report that the chocolate was delicious. :)
It was such a fabulous day, and I’m so glad I went. Liz and Claire did a great job, and I loved meeting all the strong, kind, fun women who went to the retreat too. I left feeling relaxed, energized, and positive. If only every Saturday started the same way!