On being productive..

As most of you will know, part of my travel is about training for my first ultra marathon. I am also studying so I can launch my very cool new business (more about that in future months when I am getting closer to launch). So when the opportunity presented itself to spend a month on Koh Lanta, Thailand to fully commit myself to training and study, I jumped at it. Koh Lanta has a number of great yoga studios especially Oasis Yoga , where I took classes. While there was a few Muai Thai gyms and standard gyms I was more interested in Fit On Lanta a Crossfit based gym. I also chose to spend the month working out of a co-working space – KoHub

Island Living Oasis Yoga On Fit Lanta Running Koh LantaAs per standard, I stayed in dorms at hostels rather than individual accommodation to keep my costs down. It also helps to be able to meet other travellers. So back to the topic of this blog, productivity. I had a cracker of a month!

Something has to be said for routine and working out your priorities. I used Google Calendar to map out my schedule for the month. Mapping my fitness and study as a priority and then making sure I added in some leisure time. I didn’t spend as much time on the beach as I thought I would but I did get to spend a few hours watching sunsets or chilling in the shade of a tree reading my kindle.

So what did I manage to get done over this past 4 weeks:

24 hours of yoga
10 hours of Crossfit
14 hours of running
1 4-Island Tour
1 x 3 hour spa treatment
4 x 1 hour massages
7 day detox (juice cleanse and this accounts for 8.5 hours of the yoga)
Completed my manuscript – ‘Camino: Walking through Emotions’
27 x Webinars (between 1 and 1.5 hours each)
Submitted Triad Paperwork (a requirement of my Cert IV)

I think the more amazing thing aside from my productivity was how much it cost me to spend this time in Koh Lanta. I spent an average of AUD$72 a day which is just over US$50 a day. Nomadic Matt 

How to Travel Anywhere in the World on a Budget

  book inspired me 3 years ago about traveling the world on $50 a day and I think I am doing that very nicely! Mind you I know I could have spent a lot less but I choose to hire a scooter and eat whatever I felt like but that wasn’t the object of the past month.

Over the next 7 months of my planned travel I know I will not always be this productive as staying in one location for 4 weeks straight potentially is not on the cards but I am well ahead of where I thought I would be at this point of my studies. Ensuring that I plan my days is very much key for me being able to be productive. I am spending just over a week in Singapore now and having the first few days as ‘holidays’ (my feet are sore from walking around in my flip flops!) and then the final few days will be spent working again.

I am feeling inspired about the future and the possibilities that are available to me! What are your productivity tips?

Blessed Be

Robyn xox

Travel Adventure Moments…It’s the small things..

When I first started traveling one of the things that I didn’t expect was to create so many wonderful memories. Interestingly though it wasn’t the massive ‘must see things’ that stay with me the most.

I have laid on the grass watching the Eiffel Tower and feeling in love with Paris, walked around Stonehenge – 17 years after I first fell in love with it, stood on tops of mountains and continents, placed my feet in as many oceans that I can. These are not the things that first come time mind when I think of my travel adventure moments.

The little things that really should be forgotten quicker than others are the ones that I remember.

Reaching the top of Branco Wall whilst climbing Mt Kilimanjaro. Whilst getting to the top was magnificent I was pretty sick with altitude sickness but climbing Branco Wall was a scaling an almost vertical wall and seeing the excitement on my mums face when she reached the top was priceless!

Those little coloured dots are humans!

Those little coloured dots are humans!

We did it!

We did it!

Siting in the artist workshop while he made mother of pearl inlay boxes in a back street of Damascus Syria. His skill was amazing and our lack of common language didn’t matter. I stayed there for hours and drank tea prepared by his wife. Sadly I wonder if this man and his family are still alive given the current situation in Syria. I pray that he made his way safely to another country.

Artisan of Damascus

Artisan of Damascus

Seeing what could only be described as where goldfish come from in the Blue Hole at Darhab, Egypt. Snorkelling with all those beautiful little fish… I popped out of the water and yelled to Mum that ‘I’ve found goldfish’. I was probably far more excited than I should have been but we’d had a little gold fish ‘Harry’ for many years when I was a kid so this was such a treat!

Goldfish live here!

Goldfish live here!

I am a deeply spiritual person and find Buddhist philosophy resonates with my outlook on life. So while staying at Kopan Monastery in Nepal when one of the monks fell down and had a seizure I wanted to help. Due to customs I couldn’t help physically. My younger brother had childhood epilepsy so I felt my heart being drawn to ensuring this monk was taken care of. Before I left I donated enough money to pay for his medication for the next 2 years. It was the least I could do!

Monks chilling

Monks chilling

I am a native Queenslander and if there is one thing that Queensland grows well, it is mangoes. I love them in smoothies, eaten over the sink because the juice goes everywhere and in salads. Oh how sweet a mango can be so when I tasted mango with chilli salt for the first time my view of this delicious treat was doubled! It was during my trip to Vietnam to commemorate 10 years since my Father had passed. I did a boat tour along the Mekong, seriously you can’t go to Vietnam without doing a boat tour on the Mekong! While there I was introduced to the sweet hotness of chili salt on mango. Well if this doesn’t just send your taste buds into overdrive nothing will. It also tasted amazing on grapefruit, pineapple and papaya but the mango was the standout!

Fruit says 'Chili Salt you complete me!'

Fruit says ‘Chili Salt you complete me!’

These are just five examples of the little travel adventure moments that spring to mind when I think of the great parts of travel. There are so many brilliant reasons to travel but for me, these little moments are the reasons I keep vagabonding along!

What are you favourite travel adventure moments?

Blessed Be
Robyn xox

DIY Yoga Retreat…Ubud, Bali

Have you ever thought about doing a yoga retreat?

I had many times but the price tag had always put me off. Not that I couldn’t afford it, I just didn’t see the point of spending upwards of $2500 for 10 days of yoga!

When I decided that I would travel for 9 months, I knew this was the prefect opportunity to actually do a yoga retreat. I had a nagging feeling I really didn’t want to do a retreat though. Once I had finally settled on the fact I was going to go to Bali, a place I had been turned off of because of Kuta and drunken Aussies, I digress back to the yoga….Google came to the rescue. I decided to Google DIY yoga retreat bali and low and behold the best blog post appeared.

This post, 

How to DIY a Budget Yoga Retreat in Bali

by Ashley from Ashley Abroad. It was a lightbulb moment and I nearly screamed when I saw it!

Immediately, I knew this option was for me! It meant I could attend yoga daily (or twice daily) without compromising my work or study plans. I booked myself into  Delicious Onion via AirBnb for 3 weeks. It was just a few hundred metres from Yoga Barn where I choose to do my ‘retreat’. Not only did Ashley’s blog also have a great deal to do with why I choose The Yoga Barn but lots of other people I knew raved about it. Done!!

The only potential issue in spending 3 weeks doing yoga presented was that I had also entered my first ultra-marathon, the Davao50 in the Philippines on the 28 Feb 16. Thankfully yoga and ultra-marathon training also seem to go very nicely together.

After the Sunshine Coast 70.3 Ironman, I have to admit that I have pretty much let myself go! I had issues with my shoulder (burpees had caused some real tenderness that wasn’t changing) and my nutrition was less than impressive. Added to that I had what could only be described as two episodes of me thinking I was having a heart attack. The first was over very quick and caused me to think it was a panic attack. The second didn’t subside, a trip to hospital later and seeing my doc as well as my physiotherapist I soon found out that my rib was inflamed and slightly out.

Like come on – who the bloody hell as a rib slightly out… Me of course!

A massage and a tweak from my physios wife – Craig was gentlemen enough not to manipulate my rib given it was one right under my boob – and it was as if nothing had happened. I did however get a MRI on my breasts to check for any abnormalities and I am happy to report the doctor informed me I had “unremarkable breasts”…. Only person in the world that can get away with saying that is a doctor!

Back to the yoga! I purchased a 20 session card for 1.400.000 which is about AUD $145.00 or US $100 (gee the exchange rate sucks at present!) and went to classes by Eka, Les (this man is amazing!!!), Nadine, Denise and Estee! I cannot say enough at how amazing the teachers are there. I did Intro, Yin, Vinyasa, Nidra and Laya yoga classes. I do feel sorry for anyone that took me in Nidra Yoga because all I did was fall asleep and yes snored a little!

After three weeks, and doing 3 workshops, I am stronger and more in love with yoga than ever before. Being surrounded by people that love yoga made it easier to love it. I was able to deepen my understanding of yoga and hold poses I had never managed to nail before.

The pool at Delicious Onion

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I still have a long way to go but when you consider I did 20+ yoga lessons over 3 weeks (the full day immersion, Laya Yoga and Nidra Yoga workshops were paid separately but still only cost me less than an additional AUD $100.00) I think I got a better deal than paying for a 10 day retreat. I am not saying the other retreats are wrong. At the time, for me, it was much more beneficial to do a DIY retreat. I was able to complete some studies, do yoga, eat great food, stay in an awesome hostel and meet amazing people during my 3 week stay all for just under $1500.00.

I am now in Koh Lanta, Thailand for a solid 4 weeks of training including Crossfit at Fit On Lanta, running (One does need to run, it is an ultra-marathon after all) and doing yoga at Oasis Yoga! It is shaping up to be a magically transformative month!

Have you ever done a DIY yoga retreat? I challenge you to get creative with a retreat for yourself.. Go on spoil yourself! It could be yoga, surfing or anything at all! Find a way to make it all about you and the thing you love and want to learn better!

Blessed Be,
Robyn xox