Annual Weekend Wellness Retreat

Who says old dogs can’t teach new dogs tricks?

Every year, I set aside the money and time to fly back out to South Bend, Indiana to visit my Dad and his wife, who we affectionately call “Mizz Ann”. In my mind, I was taking the time, money and effort to do this “for them”. But I have to admit, I get a lot more out of the trip than just about anyone.

For one, the air is clear and fresh out here, and they live in a newly built home where it is peaceful, quiet and serene. One of the greatest delights is when a thunderstorm hits, like it did today. There is no more enjoyable symphony than listening to a mid-western thunderstorm!

Dad and Mizz Ann also have a wonderful screened-in porch behind the house — the perfect place to pratice yoga! Check out photos below of the porch:

It’s the perfect little place for 1 person to practice yoga.  And the open screens make you feel totally immersed in nature.  I practiced without my ipod music, instead opting to let all the birds, pattering rain, rumbling thunder and soft breezes provide a soundtrack to a wonderful and focused practice.  Listen to a little sound sample here of what I was hearing, which included the distinct, sing-song coo of a morning dove. (Note: headphones will probably allow for the best listening experience).

The best part by far was Savasana at the end, and slowly opening my eyes to stare up into their lovely, wooded backyard:

Nature rocks!  (get it???)
My Dad is going to be 80 in just a few weeks and we’ll respect Mizz Ann and not disclose her age, but suffice to say, for a couple “old birds” they illustrate a life of wellness well into advanced years.  They built a mini gym down in the basement with treadmill and weight machines (and flat screen TV to they can watch the History Channel).  Dad works out several times a week and Mizz Ann belongs to a club where she plays tennis.  They opt to just eat 2 meals a day, as their caloric intake is plenty satisfied in those two meals…and while they enjoy a nice cocktail or treat with the best of them, I notice they make a point of it to eat a big healthy salad or veggies and fruit every day, and go light the day after eating big.  They keep their minds active with daily crosswords.  Most inspiring of all, and probably one of the biggest and best efforts towards being healthy, is the fact that they are active in the community, attending church each weekend and going out 2-3 times a week to parties, gatherings, restaurants, etc.  They are more socially active and in demand than I am at 40 years their junior.  And that kind of lifestyle, in my opinion, is excellent for keeping your mind and spirit active and engaged.  
Wellness comes naturally and instinctively when we take a moment to listen to our intuition.

McKenna Rowe is the Founder of Chakra 5 Mobile Yoga, an experienced team of corporate yoga instructors that provides mobile yoga classes on location and by appointment at businesses, schools and organizations throughout greater Los Angeles. Call us to start your corporate wellness program today: 310-853-3885.

Posted in Philosophy, Wellness