Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Italy 2020 Trail Running Retreat

This has been a long time coming. Back in 2003 when I was completely culture shocked by my experience in Montreal, we bought an old ruin of a shepherd's house in Northern Tuscany. It was so cheap we got the money out on our credit cards. 
Here it is, the year after we bought it. Before then you couldn't even see the house.

We went back every summer to build and finally, around 2009, ended up with this:

and we're still building! Last summer we put a roof on the barn - seriously? It's a huge stone structure but we thought we could do it and we did.

I've had a dream about this place for many years, that I want to share it with others and open up this beautiful spot as a retreat centre. We always had volunteers visiting, bartering their skills for board and lodging, so we're used to a crowd... but finally two years ago I hosted a women's healing retreat and it was wonderful!

This year, I am hosting a women's rest and recharge retreat (one spot left!), and for the first time we are hosting a Plant-Based Trail Runners Retreat! 

I am very lucky to have a great coach on board: Coach Kyle coaches runners around the world. He will be offering a one-on-one session with each runner, and of course will lead the daily trail runs and supervise strength work, stretching and other work (gratitude practice, breathing techniques, plant-based nutrition advice). I also have a guest yoga teacher joining us... the one and only Julia Gordon...here is what she has to say: 

"Hello runners and fellow adventurers! I am looking forward to meeting you all in the Tuscan hills!
About me: I completed my Yoga Teacher Training Program at Anamaya Yoga School in Costa Rica in 2016. I discovered my own practice in 2006 while completing a three year contemporary dance program and came to yoga with a passion for expressive movement. Over the years I have found that yoga helps me to maintain a sense of freedom in a fast paced world. By connecting to my body I remember my own strengths and individuality and feel more confident in my place in the world. In my class I’d like to invite people to do the same. During this retreat we can address specific concerns that come up for runners, but also focus on increasing a sense of openness and fluidity in the body in general. I will offer a mix of strength building asana and yin practice, as well as guided visualizations, that will have you up and running through this beautiful Italian landscape."

Our meals will be plant based and abundant. Our menu is designed by the chef at my very own cafe in Montreal, where we serve delicious vegan and vegetarian food. Accommodation is basic and shared, but comfortable and I guarantee you will sleep well. We have a million stars in the sky every night, and a night time silence broken only by the occasional scuffle of the boar roaming in the chestnut groves.

Are you into something different this summer? Challenge yourself! Come along and run with us! Visit us here!