Throughout the retreat the yoga and meditation were amazing. Marija is an amazing Yin teacher which is why I booked this particular trip. In previous years the retreats I’ve chosen have been mainly Bikram based, which were perfect at that time in my life.
Over the last year or so I’ve been exploring Yin and vinyasa flow yoga. This retreat was more yin-heavy with some restorative yoga and flow thrown in for good measure. Each class was 90 minutes or more and the exact medicine my mind and body needed this time round.
On the other hand, the persistent rain was pretty dull. While over in the U.K. there was some sort of heatwave occurring, in Serbia we had rain on and off (but mainly on) the first 5 days although it began to clear up at the weekend just in time for our departure.
I managed to continue with intermittent fasting. The cuisine was pretty basic and I think it was their first attempt at vegan food so it took a couple of days for them to warm up to it. Most of the food was grown on site so I really appreciated that. I would much rather have a basic cuisine that was local or homegrown over something more fancy that needed to be shipped in.
I am a plant-based vegan. I don’t need to have meat replacements or vegan junk food. Just vegetables, fruit, beans and pulses. While I always appreciate people’s effort to try and create a meal for me that is similar to what everyone else around the table is eating, except adapted to be GF and vegan; I would always rather just have fresh vegetables and fruit. Preferably raw. Everyday we had raw cabbage, tomato and cucumber and then some cooked potato and a few other veggies. Perfect.
So the first 2 days, the arrival day and the first day of yoga in the morning and my abstinence from yoga in the evening, I have already described.
From there it went as follows:
Wednesday: Flow in the morning and evening Yin and meditation
Thursday: Morning Yin and restorative yoga in the evening with meditation
Friday: Gentle flow and energy work in the morning and hot flow
Saturday: Hot Fierce Grace then Yin
Sunday: A yoga posture workshop
We did a few trips to the local sites, largely because it was raining and there was little to do at the place we were staying when the weather wasn’t up to much.
On reflection I think that if the weather had been glorious every day then that would have distracted from the yoga.
It’s just another example of how the moment is exactly what it needs to be, so it’s important to accept the present for exactly what it gives you rather than hoping for something else.
I feel like this retreat gave me a mid-year recharge that I desperately needed. There were so many moments where I felt as if all this work I have been doing on my mental health; through yoga, meditation, running and therapy, has actually improved my happiness and wellbeing. I feel I’m making good progress and this trip gave me the opportunity to reflect on that and appreciate where I have got to in my journey.