If you can’t go to Tulum then bring Tulum to you…
November 16th, 2011 was the kind of night that gives Vancouver a bad rap. The rain was pelting against my window and the looming grey clouds showed no sign of letting up. Most of the time I love Vancouver’s precipitation but on this particular night I was feeling a bit low.
I logged into Facebook and checked out the “Photos” tab, hoping for a glimpse of hilarity or inspiration…anything, really. Can you smell the wintry desperation? Lo and behold, some beautiful, vibrant photos appeared of my co-workers Christa and Steph at a yoga retreat in Tulum, Mexico.
To say the two girls looked radiant is a wild understatement. Their smiles beamed, their skin glowed and their photos were a festivus of green juice, Atlantic surf and guacamole. It was visceral, like an instant Vitamin D injection into my body.
After drooling over their photos, I logged out and put my computer aside. Steph’s and Christa’s serene smiles had given me a flash of inspiration! While I couldn’t book a trip to Tulum (I have other trips planned for 2012), I could still create my own sweet tropical retreat at home. I called a good friend and got started.
how to: tulum in your living room
• 1 x mango-scented candle
• fixings for guacamole (avocados, red onion, cilantro, garlic, jalapeno, limes, tomato)
• 1 x bag of tortilla chips
• your favourite yoga video (preferably in a hot locale)
• 1 x hot yoga outfit (or bathing suit if you’re feeling spicy)
• 2 x coconut shells (if you’re feeling REALLY spicy)
• yoga mat(s)
• sunscreen (note: only if you’re going “Method”)
• reggae music – Eek-A-Mouse or Toots and the Maytals are my favourite
• tequila, triple sec, salt and limes if it’s a Friday night
set the mood
First, crank up the heat; this is important for setting the mood. Next, throw on your favourite hot yoga outfit, head to your living room and light a mango or vanilla-scented candle. It’s hard to feel like you’re in the zone if you have goose bumps or smell your boyfriend’s cooking from the next room over.
unroll your mat and pop in your fave dvd
Clear away all of your furniture – you want to feel like you are in a palapa, not a Pottery Barn commercial. Set your mat in a comfortable space and select your favourite DVD. I like the ones by Baron Baptiste – his eyes are so bright that I feel like he is talking to me through the TV (this sounds creepy but is actually super inspiring. Promise).
asana in your asauna
Begin practising your favourite Power, Bikram, Vinyasa and Moksha moves in the warm climes of your home. Close your eyes and breathe deeply – you’ll be surprised at how quickly you forget where you are and start embracing the moment. Make sure to cherish your Savasana – this time helps us feel gratitude and realize that our lives are great right now. Vacation is a state of mind!
after the party is the after party
One of the best things about tropical yoga retreats is the balance it brings – it is hard work but obviously a lot of fun too. Throw on your favourite reggae album, make yourself a margarita, gobble some guacamole and enjoy yourself. Having a good time is our personal responsibility – why not today instead of tomorrow? Take life by the horns and shake your tail feather (keep in mind you don’t need to listen to Nelly to make this happen).
How do you wear your coconut shells (aka seize the moment)?