Recap: Florida, Sloths & Yoga

Hi all!

This past week has been SUCH a whirlwind! I traveled to Florida for an intense 2-day self-awareness/meditation workshop, with a few pit stops along the way. After landing back in Columbus at midnight on Tuesday night, all I could think about was sleeping for a week straight!

After arriving in Florida last Thursday, I attempted to go to the beach. About 5 minutes after applying my sunscreen, it started raining! Fortunately, there was a gazebo on a pond nearby, and my cousin and I ran for cover. When we were there, we got to hang out with a bunch of turtles. little one, old ones…. they kept coming up to the gazebo – there had to of been at least 15. I felt like a turtle whisperer! Finally, we ended up walking back in the rain, and it was WONDERFUL! The air was warm, the rain was warm… it felt like when I was a kid and used to run outside during storms to jump in the puddles 🙂

On Friday, my cousins and I traveled to Miami to cross off something on my bucket list: hold/pet a sloth. We went to Safari Edventure – and ended up holding a lot more than just a sloth! Tarantulas, pythons, alligators… and we even got to interact with wolves and kangaroos! It was such an amazing day! Below are a few pictures of my interactions with the animals – lots of selfies!

wallaby selfie

Wallaby Selfie


Holding a Python with my cousins!


I can’t believe I held a freaking alligator.

and now, for the best part of the day: SLOTHS!!!! I got to hold their hands, feed them, pet them… It was so surreal. They are such gentle and happy animals!

sloth selfie

I felt like I was dreaming… I’M TAKING A SELFIE WITH A SLOTH


Kisses, because they love me!

sloth 3

Feeding the King grapes

sloth 2

First encounter… did not disappoint!

sloth 1

Literally cannot contain my excitement!

nap sloth

Xena the Warrior Princess fell asleep with a grape in her mouth.. too tired to chew

happy sloth

After eating an entire banana, he is ready for sleep

sleepy sloth


Saturday and Sunday were dedicated to 18 total hours of being locked in a room with 30 other people, learning how to deepen our self-awareness and meditation practice. Think of a mashup of teachings from all religions/beliefs/law of attraction/eckhart tolle/abraham hicks/a course in miracles, all broken down into a daily practice. It was an emotionally exhausting weekend, but totally worth it. I have started a daily awareness/meditation practice, for 15 minutes, and I love it! I think it will also be a huge complement to my Yoga Teacher training beginning in May.

Sunday I went for a run, then to the beach for 4 hours. I really need to move here. The weather is PERFECT. Warm and sunny, what more could you want? At sunset, my cousin’s boyfriend took us down to a pier, and we took a few yoga pictures. All I have to say is… stunning. He is an amazing photographer! Below are a few shots:

Sunset Yoga

Pincha on the Pier! Photo Credit: Michael Vinson

Sunset Yoga Blondes

My Cousin & I. Photo Credit: Michael Vinson

On Tuesday, my final day, I woke up early for a sunrise yoga video shoot with DP Froggy, an awesome cinematographer. We spent 2 hours filming – I cannot WAIT to see the final video! Here is a sneak peak on instagram.

Picture within a picture.. Yoga shoot in the works

Picture within a picture.. Yoga shoot in the works. Photo Credit: Michael Vinson

Unfortunately, I had to leave sunny florida and head back to cold Ohio. My flight ended up being delayed, so I didn’t get home until late. Although, I don’t mind. I ended up getting a drink with a retired man at the bar who talked my ear off, and struck up a lovely conversation with a school teacher on my connecting flight. Meeting people is definitely one of my favorite things about traveling!

Over the course of the entire trip, I ended up finishing one of my books for yoga teacher training, another book by David Hawkins, and Rachel Brathen’s new book, Yoga Girl. Highly recommend all books – I love reading other people’s stories, and pretty much anything that opens my mind (whether I agree to it or not!). What is on everyone else’s reading list? Any recommendations? I already have a stack of books next to my bed that I am sloooowlyy reading, but I am always up for more 🙂

I hope everyone’s past week was as full of happiness and growth as mine was! This weekend I’ll be going for a run in prep for my quarter marathon the beginning of may… and lots of baking/cooking! Stay tuned for a post with a recipe for an Easter treat!

ACL Post-Surgery 15 weeks

15 weeks Post-Op Summary

  • Can run in less than 1week! May 29th, to be exact 🙂
  • Still going to PT every other week until I run! I have been doing PT/Yoga/workouts 3-5 times a week, so no need to go in.
  • Knee feels about 90%… Seriously. When I say “back to normal,” I mean I am walking without pain, my workouts feel easy and I am able to straighten/lock out my left knee (my right knee is hyper-extended, so this is “normal” for ME).
  • When bending up/down my knee still “catches” every once in a while – I assume this is just from the last swelling
  • knee usually feels stiff in the morning – its hard to get my heel to my butt, but after some stretching/yoga, I can sit on my heels.
  • Lots of handstands and Yoga going down at my house… Everything gets easier week by week!
  • I did a hip-hop class at work yesterday.. it was great cardio and a lot of fun! My knee did lock out which was really uncomfortable, but I was fine the next day

PT Exercises/Workouts

  • Elliptical at the beginning of my workouts, 15-25 minutes
  • Balancing on BOSU ball, ball side up on injured leg – bring other leg as far out in front, to the side, and diagonally behind you. 2-3 x 10
  • Lunges w/twist to side – lunging forward on a bosu ball w/ 6 lb ball – 2 sets of 30
  • Monster walks to the back/side (stand looking forward with a slight squat, side step left leg & to the back – so stepping not to the side or to the back, but in between) – 10 each side, 2x
  • Holding onto bands on wall, squat on one leg then back up – 3×10
  • Side-lunges while holding onto TRX band – 3 sets of 10
  • On injured (left) knee – holding 10 lb weight in right hand – lean forward, balancing on injured knee w/weight hanging down (think warrior 3 position) – 2 sets of 10 on each side
  • Lay on ground – put both feet up on an exercise ball. Bridge hips up & pull feet towards body – 3 sets of 15
  • Step up onto a platform (with bad leg) while holding a weighted ball (6 lbs). Bring up, then slowly come down. 1 set of 15
  • BOSU ball, ball side down – squats w/ 6lb ball – bring down to one side & swing slowly up across body over shoulder. 1 set of 20
  • Crunches on Ball – 3×100
  • With 6lb ball, lay on back, with arms over head. Crunch all the way up, keeping ball over head. do 20 times, then immediately after do 100 russian twists. Rest 30 seconds, repeat, but 15 crunch-ups & 75 russian twists. Rest 30 seconds, repeat, but 10 crunch-ups & 50 russian twists.
  • Workout at gym 1-2 times a week, doing PT exercises above
  • Stretching after every workout
  • Bikram Yoga/Yoga (1x a week, if I can find time)
  • Workout classes! Did a hip-hop class at work the other day – so much fun! Great to mix up my workouts 🙂

I have been practicing my handstands and doing yoga at home almost every night, sometimes in the morning. I love it! I feel like I am stronger and more flexible than I was before my surgery. With my knee feeling almost 100% back to normal now, I am still being careful. However, my flexion is getting better every time at yoga. I am even doing back bends again!

I am itching to start running again… less than one week! I do a little jogging/running for a few seconds from time to time, and I have no issues. I cant wait! Below is a t-shirt I should probably get to celebrate running next week – my 2 favorite things – sloths and napping.


Pin It on Pinterest