This month we’ve been talking about the September Scaries—that nagging feeling at the end of summer when you realize that your chance to have the perfect beach vacation, get in shape, get your errands done, “Marie Kondo” your home, and read that self-help book is over. Fall is here and with it comes back to school, back to the grind, back to skipped workouts and rushed meals.
If you feel like you didn’t get a proper vacation this summer, you still have time for a yoga retreat. Before you balk, all that’s required is that you clear your schedule for one day. We’ve put together a full day’s worth of classes and self-care tips to create a complete at-home retreat—no packing, travel time, or scrolling for classes required.
Along with a detailed guide to the flow of the day, we’ve included some of our favorite tips for making your retreat feel like a true mini-vacation. We crafted the experience with a special build-up and wind down (which we explain below) so we recommend taking the classes in order. This day is all about you, however, so please feel free to include your own special touches along the way.
Life moves quickly, and sometimes you can’t “get away” to take care of yourself. But you can push the pause button for a day and head into the fall season on your own terms.
Tips for an easeful day of rejuvenation
- Clear a space to practice. Try to make it as uncluttered as possible while adding some items that calm and inspire you, such as crystals, candles, or plants.
- Turn off notifications on your devices so you can really unplug. You might even consider downloading your yoga classes if you’re using our apps for Android or iOS. That way you can turn off wifi completely, or even take your practice somewhere off the grid.
- Have clean water handy to stay hydrated between classes. Go the extra mile by infusing it with fresh fruit or herbs!
- Keep a journal in your practice space. If thoughts or insights come to you throughout the day, you will want to be able to jot them down easily.
- Remember our “share a class” feature. If you take one you like, share it with your friends!
- Prep your food for the day. Having a few beautiful, healthy meals at the ready can help you fully relax. Just be sure to clean up before you start practicing, so you aren’t staring at dirty dishes all day.
Welcome to this space you’ve created for yourself. This retreat is entirely for you, so even if just for today, we want you to practice listening closely to your body and mind. Begin by sitting down with your journal and asking, “What do I need to know today?” remembering that there are no “shoulds” with your practice. You are not taking the day to “do” something or get in shape, you are taking today to be right where you are.
Time to get moving—slowly, but surely. Jo is a perfect teacher for taking things gradually, but getting into the flow none-the-less. Make sure you have props handy, feel free to skip a round of vinyasas, and only do about 80% of what you know you can. You’ve got a full day ahead. Don’t rush it.
Now that you’re warmed up, it’s time to get cooking! We know you wanted to hit your core at some point in the day, so let’s just get this one over with early while you have the energy! This HIIT class moves quicker than most classic yoga sequences, so just do what you can. Core strength was not built in a day!
You’ve put in the work to stoke your inner fire, so now is not the moment for a break (unless you need a quick “human moment”). We’re going to use all that great heat you created to get into your hips and back. Stay with us!
And now you deserve a break! If you’re going to take an hour or two for lunch, we recommend that you eat first, so you can allow yourself at least an hour to digest. For the perfect mix of nourishing, satisfying, and just plain yum, we usually turn to a recipe from Kathryn Budig:
Welcome back! It’s time to take a sweet, stretchy journey toward deep rest and relaxation. But first, we’ll allow a few extra minutes to digest by listening to some reminders from Taylor on why we so badly need to unplug.
Still enjoying that after-lunch feeling? No need to jump around. This class stays low to the ground, giving you full permission to just lie around and stretch.
The earth teaches us an important lesson: magnetism. It draws things to it with a force we call gravity. As we learn to go with gravity, we learn the important lesson that non-doing allows what we need to come to us. If we are jumping around and doing all the time, nothing can come in. This relaxing practice will help you twist out all the old energy and become still enough to allow for the new.
This is the perfect moment to connect back to your breathing. Now that your breath isn’t in full “react” mode, you can actually channel it to give you what you’re looking for. This class with Kia Miller involves holds in the cycle of your breathing, to help you feel strong and steady to your core.
You’ve made it so far. Your body, mind, and breathing are prepared. It’s time to simply rest and let it all dissolve…
Pro tip: make sure to bundle up before you do a long relaxation. Put on socks, cover yourself with a blanket, and perhaps put something over your eyes.
Dissolve into Stillness with Elena Brower
30 min – Meditation
By now you may be feeling deeply relaxed and dreamy, so we’ll leave you to enjoy. While the practice portion of your retreat day is complete, you can still continue the self-care journey if you wish. Here are a few things we suggest:
- Have a hot cup of tea or some fruit.
- Go take a hot bath or shower and let the water wash it all away…
- Take some time to journal and ask the question, “What do I need to know now that my mind is clear?” Just know that even if you don’t get a clear message, you got rid of what you no longer need, you made space for what you do need, and you set yourself up for your energy to flow smoothly.
- Crawl into bed knowing that everything you needed to do is done and whatever tomorrow brings, you have everything you need to face it. There is nothing more to do or undo…
You are complete.
Once you make your way out of your blissful, retreat-induced haze—we want to hear from you! Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to tell us about your day. How did you like the retreat format? Is there any part of the day that didn’t flow for you? What would you like to see next time? We can’t wait to hear all about it!