Let's celebrate Global Wellness Day Everyday

I bet that if you’re like me when you think of wellness and what you need to do to be “well” you think, “I need to eat better” followed by “I need to go the gym” followed by massive feelings of guilt because you are doing neither of those things.

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As the 3rd Annual Global Wellness Day (June 11) approaches I started to think what does wellness really mean?

I think when we think wellness, our mind immediately goes to the physical, and I mean the superficial physical. It’s all about being thin if you’re a woman, or buff if you’re a man. Sure we want to be healthy and free of disease, but most of us are more concerned about how we’re going to look at the beach this summer. If we look great in our suit, we must be well. Right?

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Wrong.

Wellness is about so much more than how we look. In fact, wellness is so much more than the physical. I can be a size four and able to run a 10K and to the outside world, I am the poster child for wellness, but if I’m a stress ball, sleep four hours a night, rely on coffee to power through my day and am dealing with a turbulent marriage, am I really well?

Hmmm, maybe I’m not as healthy as I think.

I realized that there is a difference between looking good and being well, and also a difference between fitness and wellness.

Looking good, being fit, eating well and feeling centeredand balanced are all components that make up wellness. To be well, you need to have them all. Ugh, now it’s about even more than just getting my butt to the gym and choosing a salad with light dressing for lunch!

Because wellness is composed of so many things, it’s hard to find only at a gym, or only at a spa, that is why a wellness retreat is so beneficial.

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At a wellness retreat, like those offered by my company Wild Wellness Travel and our partner Retreats Unlimited, programming is offered to address all the different aspects of wellness. There are yoga classes that work the body while calming the mind, fitness classes and hiking to get your heart rate up and torch calories, meditations to bring balance, spa treatments to soothe sore muscles and healthy food to fuel your body and your moods. While Wild Wellness Travel retreats are usually focused on a theme, they all offer elements for every component of wellness. And most importantly, they provide tools for you to take home so you can continue the wellness journey.

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As we celebrate Global Wellness Day, I invite you to think about what wellness really is and if you’re as well as you want to be. And if you want to use Global Wellness Day as the day you commit to becoming well, I invite you to check out the special early booking discounts Wild Wellness Travel and Retreats Unlimited has on all of their retreats.

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What is a Wellness Retreat?

In perusing travel blogs, I often read about participants concerned about the weight gained on cruises and all-inclusive vacations.  They arrive home feeling bloated and exhausted.  It occurs to me that the time we take away from our professional life should be an opportunity to release; let go of the everyday stressors and re-connect with our inner selves.

What better way than to take a “wellness” retreat! A retreat offers a place in which one can rest and relax.  They are usually for small, intimate groups that offer nurturing and healing; a place to connect and learn. They create an opportunity to escape and spend a few days unfettered by the demands of daily life. There are as many reasons to attend as there are variations on the theme, with retreats ranging from offering spiritual enlightenment to demanding intensive physical participation.

My focus is to create wellness retreats that fit somewhere in the middle, the perfect composite experience to strengthen but also relax both your body and mind.   Our retreats offer a daily Yoga practice, meditation workshops, and delicious, well-balanced healthy meals specially created by our own culinary expert.  We share our knowledge of health and nutrition and strive to create a rejuvenating adventure that you will want to repeat!

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Our participants come for their health, their hearts, and their happiness. To detox, to relax, to learn, or to simply share the experience among kindred spirits. To practice yoga with a renowned practitioner and to eat delicious food cooked with care by a transcendent nutritionist.  They come to jump start a new regime at home and they come to be inspired. They leave with fresh vision and goals, new friends, and a renewed appreciation for the world around them.

This May, our retreat is being held in Tulum, Mexico. We are blessed to be hosting the experience at the Shambala Petite Hotel, an exclusive group of casitas nestled on a Caribbean beach. We have partnered with yoga master Maria Filippone and culinary expert Mikaela Reuben.  Check out the adventure and wander into your wild at tulum.wildwellnesatravel.com

Yoga at Tulum Re:Align Retreat with Maria Filippone

Wild Wellness Travel is very excited to welcome Maria Filippone to the team presenting at our upcoming Tulum retreat, May 21-28th.  Maria has a multi-disciplinary training and her teaching spans over twenty years and has taken her around the globe, shaping her gifts into a synergistic blend of Vinyasa yoga, Pilates, Thai masssage, and Sanskrit chant.

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Her classes have been described as a journey where time slows down, where music and breath carry the mind and body into an experience of deep alignment. Maria invites her students to be curious about their practice, and to find the courage to move beyond limitations; her meticulous hands-on adjustments and precise verbal cues invite students to access the grace, ease and power that lies within. Maria's appreciation and love for all of her teachers, her students, community and her beautiful daughter's, expands her heart and grounds her as a teacher.

Maria believes that wellness Vacations allow us to unplug, de-stress & recharge our bodies and minds.  Taking time from our busy schedules at home allows for us to focus on our own well-being while being inspired by the beauty and sound of the surrounding nature.   For Maria, wellness vacations are meaningful experiences with long-lasting positive effects as well as guiding us to simply make better lifestyle choices upon our return home.   

With seven days of retreat at Tulum we have the opportunity to focus our practice and truly benefit from a life-changing event.  We will be focusing on detoxification and re-energizing.  Maria has shared with us five of her top poses for detox and energy.

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“To promote detoxification one must first establish healthy breathing patterns (Deep Diaphragmatic Breathing). Yogic Breathing helps to clear out the carbon dioxide from the lung tissue.  The abdominal organs are massaged with every cycle of breath when the diaphragm is moving freely and naturally.   The practice of keeping the mind focused on deep breathing, rather than on the constant chatter of the mind, results in a natural detox of the mind.  You can start your detox with these powerful postures:

1)  Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svansana) - A partial inversion where the head is below the heart. This aids in circulation of blood and lymph. 

2)  Chair Pose with Twist (Parivrtta Utkatasana) - Squeezing & toning the abdominal organs while stimulating liver, spleen & the systems of digestion and elimination. 

3)  Legs Up The Wall (Viparita Karani) - Encourages stimulation of blood and lymph from the feet and legs and is soothing to the nervous system. 

4)  Shoulder Stand (Sarvangasana) - An inversion posture that helps drain accumulated fluid from the legs & upper body. 

5)  Supported Headstand (Salamba Sirsasana) - Improves the functioning of the cardiovascular system by reducing the strain on the heart.  Promotes internal heat while increasing the digestive fire.  Headstands also help to increase the functioning of the endocrine system; pineal and pituitary glands. 

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To enhance your flow of energy, practice these five poses:

 

 1)  Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskar) - A wonderful way to awaken the body and encourage the smooth powerful flow of Prana throughout the body.  

2)  Camel Pose (Ustransana) - A heart opening posture that stretches open the front side of the body and encourages the lung to expand. 

3)  Warrior 2 (Virabhadrasana 2) - Leg strengthening & invigorating posture that awakens the Warrior within. 

4)  Side Plank (Vasisthasana) - A whole body strengthening pose that requires tremendous focus of the mind reducing mental stress and increasing our energy levels. 

5)  Chair Pose or Thunderbolt Pose (Utkatasana) - Also known as “Powerful Pose“ engaging the large muscles of the legs and glutes creating fresh new energy in the body while also awakening the spine.”

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Join us in Tulum at the Shambala Petite Hotel for an life-changing retreat with our amazing instructor, Maria Fillippone, May 21-28th.  For more information, check out this link

 tulum.wildwellnesstravel.com 

 

 

 

 

Balancing Act

Life is about balance. That old saying, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”, has true merit in today’s world.  It often seems as if the world is spinning by and we are just trying to hang on!  Somehow, we have come to see ourselves as super-people.  We have to be good at everything; from our families to our careers, our social life, our fitness – all of it.  If we don’t at excel at something, it feels as if we are falling behind. 

According to a new Pew Research Center study, more than half of working parents find it hard to balance work and family, and women are struggling more than men.  As we are usually the mainstay of the home, it falls on us to create meal plans, organize the social events, schedule the comings and goings of all family members, etc. When do we find the time four ourselves?

It isn’t just carving out an hour several times a day to go to the gym; it is the time it takes to make meal plans, organize a pantry, shop, and create healthy recipes that every family member will enjoy.  I get exhausted just thinking about it!  Today’s mother is a super-hero!

This is where I come in! The search for that balance has been one of the many reasons that clients come to me.  They are looking for help in creating balance in their lives.  How do you find the time to research all the variables in creating a healthy life path? You don’t have to; I have already done it for you. With some guidance and support, you can create balance in your world, feel less stressed, and enjoy the ride you’ve embarked on!  Check out the programs we have available for you at http://www.wildwellnesstravel.com/one-on-one-coaching/  We can’t wait to get started!

 

 

 

Nicaragua magic

 

 

Hello beautiful souls. If you are looking for an amazing surf and yoga retreat this winter look no further.  

 

My my talented dear friends at Papaya Wellness based in stunning Nicaragua host some bad ass retreats.  

For a sneak peak of what to expect check out this awesome video! 

Here are all the details. Email info@wildwellnesstravel.com for booking information. 

 

LUXURY SURF & YOGA RETREAT

HACIENDA IGUANA, NICARAGUA

UPCOMING DATES:

FEB 27TH – MARCH 5TH, 2016

MARCH 12TH – MARCH 19TH, 2016

SINGLE OCCUPANCY PRIVATE ROOM (AC)  /  $2,500 USD/PERSON

DOUBLE OCCUPANCY(AC)  /  $2,100 USD/PERSON

BOOK RETREAT

8 DAY LUXURY SURF & YOGA RETREAT AT 
MARK & DAVE'S, HACIENDA IGUANA, NICARAGUA

This is a 7 night/8 day All Inclusive Luxury Yoga and Surf Retreat at Mark and Dave`s a luxurious beach front surf lodge in the sea-side community of Hacienda Iguana. Relax in the ocean front pool between surf sessions at Panga Drops, and watch the un-ridden waves roll by. Practice yoga and pilates twice daily from the ocean side platform. Learn to surf in a fun and supportive atmosphere with other beginners at the mellow learning wave Los Perros. Indulge without guilt in healthy, fresh and nourishing vegetarian and seafood fare. Explore the surrounding communities and get to know Nicaraguan culture, let go and unwind with a relaxation massage, take some time for yourself, connect to yourself, get inspired, and take a week to just ‘be’.

A highlight video of the resort, surrounding areas and the variety of activities outside of surfing in Nicaragua...

WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • Airport shuttles 

  •  7 Nights accommodation in a luxury beach front. All rooms with air conditioning,  private bathrooms and showers, and two full size pillow top beds

  •  3 Nutritionally balanced and inspired vegetarian and seafood meals daily

  • 1 Surf lesson and excursion with lunch included

  • Wireless internet

  • Fresh fruit smoothies, juices, local fair trade coffee and filtered water
     
  •  2 Daily yoga / pilates lead by an experienced instructor

  •  1 Complimentary massage and pedicure
     
  •  3 Surf lessons at wave out front `Los Perros, includes board hire

  • Complementary wine, beer and delicious sunset cocktails
  • Karma Yoga day. Get involved with the local community, have fun through cultural exchange-  local cooking class, community surf lessons, beach clean up etc!  (Activity will depend on what is happening in the community at that time)

  • IPod Hook up (Rooms and The Hacienda area)

  • Bicycles, Stand up Paddle Boards, Horseshoes, Volleyball net, snorkeling gear, fishing lines

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED

 Tipping for on site staff and services ( a standard tip is 10%)

Additional spa services (available upon request)

For Hire:

Motorbikes, Taxi vans, Short board rentals (a full selection of “Firewire, Channel Islands, Rusty, and various other”  Short and longboards)

A PERCENTAGE FROM YOUR RETREAT PACKAGE IS DONATED DIRECTLY TO SUPPORTING COMMUNITY HEALTH IN PLAYA GIGANTE VIA THE COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER!

SINGLE OCCUPANCY PRIVATE ROOM (AC)  /  $2,500 USD/PERSON

DOUBLE OCCUPANCY(AC)   /   $2,100 USD/PERSON

BOOK RETREAT

**Inquire about group pricing. If you reserve before July, 2015 we will offer you a $200 discount! 

 

Enjoy!  

 

Cait

The Ranch 4.0 - Four days to transformation

As promised the Ranch at Live Oak / Malibu also offers a shorter program! Check out the wonderful facts below and for more information or questions feel free to reach out to Cait at Wild Wellness Travel.

 

R4.0 is a shortened version of the acclaimed Ranch at Live Oak / Malibu weeklong program. This is a luxury wellness and fitness retreat taking place at Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village and California Health and Longevity Institute. R4.0 supports guests through intensive outdoor physical activity, exercise sessions and a structured nutritional diet of fresh organic vegetarian fare. This retreat allows guests to take a break from their hectic daily schedule and focus on their mind, body and spirit while they cleanse, detoxify and shed unwanted pounds.   R4.0 was designed as a jumpstart program for guests unable to take a week off and for those who need to stay more connected during their stay.

With a “no- options” philosophy, the highly effective program includes 8 hours of exercise daily, with challenging physical activities that prove rewarding and fun. A dedicated and experienced staff tends to your every need. While at R4.0, guest’s time will be spent in low impact constant activity, rather than short bursts of intense, injury- prone activity. Each morning, guests awaken at 5:30 a.m. for morning stretches, followed by a four- to five- hour group hike winding through the Santa Monica Mountain terrain. With 200- plus trails varying in levels of difficulty, guests are treated to varying hikes each day. After lunch, guests are delighted to nap before an active afternoon filled with core and ab work, weight training sessions, daily massage, and group yoga and stretching.

Through the California Health and Longevity Institute all guests participate in VO2 and Bod Pod testing to further educate themselves about their current baseline with regards to fitness level and body fat composition.

 

The Ranch’s highly knowledgeable staff supports and nurtures its guests, while guiding them toward achieving the personal program goals they each set upon arrival. The Ranch is all about stimulating mind and body through sustainable exercise which will enhance metabolism, cleanse and detoxify the body, allow for a healthy loss of fat, and offer a heightened sense of mental clarity and serenity. Guests desiring to lose weight, routinely shed some unwanted pounds and inches, emanating a vibrant, heal thy glow, and getting a dramatic head start on maintaining a path of heal thy living.

 

All guests have their own private room which includes a king bed, shower and bathtub at Four

Seasons Hotel Westlake Village. Guests have access to the award winning spa area during any downtime in the program where they can enjoy the sauna, steam room, meditation area and indoor and outdoor pool. We have removed the coffee makers and mini bars so that no one is tempted during their stay.

CUISINE

A 1,400- caloric daily diet consists of gourmet farm- to- table fare with French and American influences.

Flavorful and healthy, cuisine emphasizes fresh, organic ingredients designed to sustain and detoxify.  No alcohol, caffeine, or processed sugars are served, and special diets and food allergies are accommodated.

Dining at R4.0 is communal in our Ranch Greenhouse on property at Four Seasons Hotel, Westlake

Village. We offer a cooking demonstration on Monday mornings where guests interact with our chef and learn how to create some dishes at home.

RATES & POLICIES

The program begins Thursday at noon through Monday at 10:00AM and includes all meals; daily hikes; fitness classes; daily massage (Friday- Sunday) ; cooking demonstration and nutrition information; transportation as required throughout guests stay; and transportation from Westlake Village to LAX on Monday departing at 10 am and arriving at LAX by noon.

Ranch 4.0 is an all- inclusive rate, excluding gratuities, which are discretionary. A 30- day Pre- arrival  itinerary of exercise,  diet,  and wellness tasks is sent to guests and is recommended for the most effective results. The Ranch also  supports  and  accommodates  takeover  group  weeks  and  specially  tailored  corporate  retreats. Please email Cait at Wild Wellness Travel for more information on pricing and how to find yourself in this transformational program. wildwellnesstravel@gmail.com

TESTIMONIALS

I’ve grown in so many areas in the past ten years but did not feel my body reflected my soul. I needed a breakthrough! The Ranch exceeded ALL my expectations. It did exactly what I wanted. They pushed my limits in a beautifully nurturing way. I learned so much and leave feeling aligned, supported, loved and with a new sense of purpose. Alex, Sue and the great staff have created something very special.

Mathew Upchurch –  Founder/CEO Virtuoso, Ltd.

It’s not just about the week one spends at The Ranch, it’s the effect it has when you leave. I have continued to lose weight WITHOUT DOING ANYTHING AT ALL. It is almost as though it has changed my set- point. It’s like it resets your metabolism. I was so sure, having hit 50, that those few extra pounds were something I had to accept. Not so, not so at all. The joy at not feeling lumpy over

Christmas is a priceless one. Thank you again, guys.

C.S. – London, England

Just back from the incredible new Ranch at Live Oak “boot camp” in Malibu 10 pounds and 9 inches lighter! I started preparing 4 months ahead and in total have lost 30 pounds and almost 20 inches.  It is amazing! I need a whole new wardrobe.  The best part is that my body is still in burn mode and I am losing more weight. It is really incredible!!! This is perfect for anyone who wants to get in shape or spend a week focusing on themselves, challenging their limits and growing their physical and emotional fitness level.

J.E. – New York, New York

It has been over 6 months that I visited the Ranch, which changed my lifestyle and indeed gave me the techniques and discipline to keep my weight down. I have now lost 32 lbs and received all high marks at my recent annual physical exam. A million thanks and my regards to all.

C.C. – Hong Kong

Feeling fit and gaining traction for a fresh start is invaluable. I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t need that. You have created an incredible place providing life- changes for people. Now I just need to book my next visit.

J.S. – Los Angeles, California

I am a Board Certified MD. Of note, as I mentioned, I think the pre and post numbers I had were

very enlightening.  Here are the highlights: Weight loss 8 lbs, Total Cholesterol from 202 to 173,

HDL’s jumped to 50 and LDL’s went from borderline high to normal, C Reactive Protein went to normal. This is actually relatively powerful since I had tried for about a year before the Ranch using a knowledgeable basis and trying things like Fish Oil, Oats, and other ways to naturally decrease my cholesterol.   The point here is that there is very likely some tangible empirical evidence that the Ranch, and maybe more importantly, a “Ranch- like lifestyle” could have real impact on areas like Cholesterol, Diabetes, Hypertension let alone longer term issues like cancer, aging, etc.

C.K. –  Chicago, Illinois

You have created a world class retreat, which I hope to visit regularly throughout my life to recalibrate my mind and body. It’s a tough program that challenged me each day and made me realize how strong I really am.

J.M. – Toronto, Canada