My Nan did yoga until well into her 80s and mum has been doing it for over 40 years. My dad claims to have been an avid yogi in the 70s but none of us have seen one pigeon pose. He claims it’s all in his mind. I have an on/off affair with yoga. I did it every day in July but only 3 times since then. Oops. So while I’m super excited to be joining the Wanderlust tribe I have been a little apprehensive as to experiencing yogues full time for 4 days.
Day one. I’m a newbie. My buddy isn’t turning up till Day 3 so I’m lurging looking for new yoga friends – anyone? I used to feel really uncomfortable meeting new people (networking guide blog coming in November) but Ive found the more you do it the easier it gets and luckily for me yoga folk are super friendly especially the Wanderlust team.
I kick off with some meditation under a tee-pi. Clear head. Tick. Done. 5 year old Bec is drawn to the hula-hoop dancing session. And after about half an hour of awkward thrusting, wiggling & whacking my comrades with my hoop – I got it! Look, it’s not something I’ll be doing back on Bondi beach but it was fun.
Hungry, all I could find in a hurry was Mexican which was NOT a good idea before SUP (stand up paddleboard) yoga. I’d been hanging out to try this for a while. And it was HARD. Good hard but I was the first to schimmy sideways (gracefully) into the water after a very tricky warrior pose gone wrong and let me tell you the Mexican swirling about in my tummy did not help. But I loved it & will definitely do it again. I joined the press conference at the end of the evening with a delightful sunset backdrop over Twin Waters, Novotel. It dawned on me what a massive feat it must be to curate, design and engineer this festival. I can’t wait for tomorrow.
First a confession. I am one of those annoying early bird types. I kicked off today at 5am hiking up a steep path to Mt Coolum to discover serene pano views. I slip slid my way back down the hill to join a Surf 101 class. The sea had more motion in it than my washing machine on a heavy cycle but the crew created an awesome yoga / mindfulness blend with a surf lesson – my brain even recalled how to stand up on the board and I fell in love with surfing all over again. Full of ‘must get back into this when I get home’ type feelings.
Next up I chose to listen to Lola Berry (a well-known nutrition personality in Australia) talk about keeping an eye out for nasties in your food. The worst one – for those of you who drink ‘diet’ anything was the chemical 951 – it’s absolute poison. Ugh what are we doing putting this stuff in our bodies! Another super interesting point and I know many of you might relate – is getting a little too obsessed with one type of super food, O-ding on it and sometimes even forming an allergy. Guilty! I did this by having kale every day for a year in my green smoothies. It sounds so simple but variety is the spice of life right? Just because bone broth is awesome doesn’t mean we need to have it everyday.
The afternoon was spent in three 90 minute yoga classes back to back. Yes three. No time for any leisurely Mexican today. If I’m honest, today all I ate was protein bars – hmm not sure what Lola would say about those nourishment options. I’ve done enough hip opening and ‘attempted’ crows to last me till Christmas. The yogatainment was in full force with how to workshops, bends and mantras giving me the realisation that there is a lot more to yoga than a simple downward dog.
There’s heaps of cool music tonight but I’m exhausted and this early bird needs to be ready for tomorrow’s 630am meditation on the beach. Tweet tweet. Time to press the activewear!
Another perfectly stunning day on the Sunshine Coast. Kicking off the day at 630am with a standout visualisation meditation from Swami G. I know this isn’t everyone’s cuppa tea but if you can handle sitting on a picture perfect beach and taking a few deep breaths in and out you would cope.
Next up was Acroyoga for beginners. Let’s just say I won’t be signing up for Cirque de Soleil anytime soon. It’s really interesting to observe the ego during challenging new experiences like this where it’s easy to compare yourself to others or ‘wish’ you could be better. I managed a half flying something and while it wasn’t pretty it did feel pretty cool and the best bit is playing like a kid again and not taking everything so seriously!
Sampled a ‘living pizza’ today. Yes all raw, organic, GF, DF etc etc. It tasted delicious. Pity my stomach didn’t really agree so much.
Some cool chats about self-love, managing positive and negative core beliefs and a sneaky nana nap on the beach before a final 90 minute class on setting intentions and rocking a few vinyasa moves to Fat Freddy’s drop (all the classes have DJs most of which are kiwis – only the best!).
I’m so tight from all the downward dogging and planking I could hardly pop my left hip while listening to the legendary sounds of Donovan Frankenreiter – a free massage tent is probably a good idea for a sponsor next year.
Wow. That was an awesome experience. Here’s what I learnt after 4 days of Wanderlusting on the Sunshine Coast.
- I really enjoy yoga and the zen zone it gives me (could’ve been tricky otherwise)
- Ayurveda translates to the science of life. I loved the thought that everything in life is food – all you take in you absorb. Consider what you are digesting and surrounding yourself with.
- Totally agreed with the concept taught to students from Duncan Peak of Power Living Confrontation with expectation is manipulation. Confrontation without compassion is abuse.
- Keep your eye out for Teff – it’s going to be the new super food.
- There are three parts to your shoulders – thanks Amy Ippoliti from yogaglo.com. It’s change how I look at posture. Stand proud like a toddler.
- Noticing my ego during a yoga dance class telling myself I looked like a fruit loop then getting over myself & enjoying the experience so much more.
- Sharing Wanderlust with a wonderful friend was a real bonus as was having time on my own to process ‘stuff’ and met some really lovely folk.
- The heart has it’s own version ‘brain’ according to research done by HeartMath is the U.S. They’ve also found our heart communicates via electromagnetic field interactions with our brain that can be detected 5 or 6 feet away. Fascinating. More.
- There are some really strong, flexible, talented young women out there providing awesome role models for women of all ages.
- While my pigeon may’ve improved, my crow and headstands are very much still a work in progress and I’m happy to leave acroyogues to the experts.
- It’d be awesome to see more guys at these events. There are just as many classes which would appeal to blokes who like keeping in shape.
- Blogging everyday is intense but satisfying.
- I love the Sunshine Coast. The temperature, the beaches, the vibes. Hello #happyplace.
- Don’t leave dropping off your hire car till the last minute. My zen momentarily disappeared as I realised I had 5 minutes to drop the rental car off at a closed office, with no where to leave the key a bit down the road from the airport. Sprinting to the departure gate was er… exhilarating.
- After one of these events you always make big claims about all that yoga, surfing, meditation and Qi Dong you’re going to squeeze in. I’m being realistic as I plan these into the week and having a yoga buddy to hold me accountable will also help when I get a case of excusesology.
The team at Wanderlust produced an incredible festival. If you like yoga, wellness, meditation, cool tunes and want to get out of your routine then definitely consider checking out one of their upcoming festivals. You don’t have to do 4 days – there are day passes but I think at least two day is ideal to fully soak up the vibe and stretch out your body and mind in a fun, supportive, open, friendly community vibe. I’ll definitely be back.