I’ve been getting so many questions about my time spent in Hawaii. Those of you I am lucky enough to see in person every week have been extremely caring and inquisitive about my adventure. You people warm my heart! From my many experiences traveling, I can honestly say it is extremely rare to come across people who truly want to know about your time away. Most ask the obligatory questions and want to know if you had fun, if the weather was nice, if you saw the major sights, but few really care, few really want to know. The fact that so many of you do is just a testament to the true community of clients, students, online supporters, family members, and blog enthusiasts I have manifested into my life. Thank you, truly.
While in Hawaii, I participated in a ‘Yoga on the Inside’, yoga immersion/intensive… 6 days a week, 5 hours a day, okay, usually 5 ½ hours a day! It was by far the most challenging physical thing I have ever done--harder than any pre-season soccer training, tougher than any mountain I’ve ever climbed, more challenging than any race I’ve ever attempted to run.
That being the case, this was the busiest “vacation” I’ve been on to date, but hey, that’s how I like to do things! I woke up at 5 am every morning, hit the road by 6 and drove an hour to the most serene jungle yoga studio right off the infamous “Road to Hana.” The beauty of this drive was worth the trip to Maui in and of itself. At the studio, our day began with 1-2 hours of chanting, meditation, pranyama, and some gentle asanas (yoga postures). This time of the morning felt almost enchanting, the studio was cut off from the everyday hustle and bustle, and most days we were gifted with a refreshing rain shower that pounded rhythmically on the roof. Sound luxurious? It was, completely.
Then we had a break where we all pounded our superfood drinks and wrote in our journals. I remember thinking on that very first day that I was where I was meant to be because of merely this. I was surrounded by a group of people who enjoyed the stillness of reflection and the contemplative aspect of writing… ahh, my heart! There we all were, spread out on the lawn, sunning ourselves like iguanas while we quietly sat with our blender bottles and journals… truly, truly, my heaven.
After break, we shuffled back into the studio with anxious anticipation for what was to come. Now, they do not use the name “Yoga on the Inside” without reason. This yoga makes you go deep; it pulls not only on your physical strength, but also on your heart strings. I’ve never pushed myself more physically, mentally, and emotionally. I’ve never wanted to. The yoga is deeply introspective because of the way it is set up. You are given a demo and an explanation, you find the posture, fine-tune the posture, and then hold the posture. When I say hold the posture, I mean hold the posture, for minutes… sometimes for 10+ minutes! Sounding not so luxurious anymore?
The thing that happens when you hold postures that long in proper alignment is that your inner “stuff” begins to come up. The unhealed parts of your past, your traumas, and your heartaches begin to bubble to the surface. Tears can fall, waves of relief or understanding can come, even laughter can slip out. The entire experience is incredibly healing because when emotions of the past are not looked at and healed, they just sit in our bodies. They cause disease--horrible disease, they cause pain, and probably worst of all, they cause us to close up our hearts, not allowing ourselves to ever experience true joy. I found tremendous healing in my two weeks on Maui from this, incredible healing.
After yoga, I had the rest of the day to adventure! There were plenty of cute little towns all along my drive, and my day usually went something like this: grabbing a juice or a smoothie and some delicious food--usually an ahi tuna poke bowl--then hitting the beach! My goal was to swim in the turquoise-blue waters every day while I was there, and I only missed a couple!
“After hours” I was able to spend time and reconnect with another very holistically-minded friend and we hiked, cooked delicious food, visited farmer’s markets, went to luaus, caught sunsets by the ocean, and reminisced over our past college experiences together. In true Holly fashion, I was usually in bed before her three year old, at about 9 PM! Then, I’d wake up at 5 AM and do it all over again.
The two weeks flew by, and soon enough I found myself back at the cute little Kahului open-air airport. The only downfall of Hawaii?! It takes a loooonng time to get there, and a loooonng time to get back from the east coast! Resetting after spending 12 hours on a plane took me a few days that’s for sure. The first thing (well the second, the first was sleep) I did when I got home though, was to book my own acupuncture appointment… did you know it can really help with jet lag?! It was a life-saver this trip!
After all is said and done, I can say in all sincerity that I am truly still buzzing from the magic that was Hawaii. I’m feeling more driven, motivated, and excited than I have in quite some time and I can’t wait to share it with all of you, whether that be in the treatment room, in the studio, online, or an a whimsical retreat somewhere warm!!!
Interested and want to learn more about Yoga on the Inside?
We are extremely lucky in Maine because one of the teachers I studied with in Hawaii, Kristin Bosteels, is a Maine native, so she teaches in this area a lot! Her next workshop, co-lead with Eddie Modestini, is at the end of June at Zen Den in York. You can also check out this interview with them here for more of the down low on this amazing healing modality.