Diary Of A Wellness Retreat, Part Two: Hiking & Yoga

Our day begins with a meditative walk. Heel to toe, heel to toe.  Feel the earth beneath your feet, let it ground you. It’s really early, but I feel awake and alert. Maybe it’s because of the time change, or maybe it’s because of the deep sleep I had the night before. Either way, it feels great. We wind around a path left by the footsteps of those who walked here before us – but the path isn’t so much a path as it is a hint of people having walked there – clearly they are few and far between. Under the shade of oak trees, past a reservoir where bullfrogs hide in lily pads and call to each other back and forth all day long. Up a hill, where we stop and turn to take in the view of the landscape below us. The trees are so interesting here – so unlike the trees in Philadelphia. There’s a strange tree that is falling apart and covered with holes. At first my mind thinks termites, but a closer look reveals that the holes are plugged with acorns. Aaron tells us there’s a type of woodpecker that does this. I’ve never seen anything like that. I wonder what this tree, what all these trees, have seen in their lifetime. I wonder what stories they have to tell. After a meditative exercise that revolves around breathing and taking in the energy of the atmosphere around us, we head back for breakfast.

Breakfast is amazing – oatmeal, yogurt, fresh berries, eggs, tomatoes, and the coffee that tasted oh so amazing. Everything Eva and Scott serve is vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free, and amazing. After breakfast…time for yoga! I felt a little bit rusty at first – I’ve been so busy I haven’t taken the time to do yoga all that much lately – but everything came back like second nature. My biggest challenge is breathing. I still tend to hold my breath sometimes, and it’s hard for me to fully relax my body and let go. I still feel a tension in my stomach and jaw. Aaron tells us this is normal. We tend to hold a lot of tension in these areas – which are actually quite connected – because this world just expects too much of us at times. Sometimes it’s ok to let those expectations fly out the window. We can only do so much. As I thought about this I mentally threw thoughts of stress and anxiety out the window in front of me, out into the California air.

“Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

wellness retreat ranch

lily pads

oak tree


california landscape

woodpecker tree

wellness retreat decor

western ranch decor

healthy breakfast buffet

healthy breakfast yogurt and fruit

yoga studio

yoga mat and feet

yoga mat and outfit

Y-Back Seamless Cami, Printed Yoga Shorts.


amethyst crystal

jasmine flowers

These flowers in the yoga studio smelled absolutely incredible. Does anyone know what they are? I thought jasmine but I looked it up and I’m not sure.

More to come tomorrow!

For more info on Sagrada visit their website and Facebook page.

Photos by Julia.

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10 years ago

Lovely post! Your retreat sounds amazing. Thanks for sharing:)


10 years ago

I thought those trees looked familiar. I live about 10 minutes from Santa Margarita and love our oak trees. I hope you enjoyed your stay on the Central Coast!

10 years ago

This place looks like heaven! What a great way to de-stress. Thanks for the tip. Sign me up!

10 years ago

It saddens me that nothing like this is in England – especially in and around London. The city drains me, I feel my creativity sort of slip through my fingers, being pulled by the hum and drum of the metropolis when I don’t do yoga and walk and escape it every now and then. I love Free People and everything the brand stands for. I hope some day to stay in America, maybe even write and work and explore for such a beautiful company. Oh, sweet dreams.

Beautiful retreat, it’s now on my bucket list. x

10 years ago

I’ve never really though about combining these two together but it actually seems like a great idea. They are both relaxing in their own way, and are both good for the body. In surrounding like you were in too, it’s hard to see any reason why not to do it. For hikes, a great breakfast is essential in fuelling you through to lunch or tea so oatmeal and milk is great for slow releasing energy.

10 years ago

i’m also named julia, from philadelphia (but i live in LA now) and am going on this exact retreat for labor day weekend! i’m going to read the rest of your posts now but please get in touch if you’d like!!

10 years ago

This place is like heaven!
It was a great way to de-stress.
Thanks for the tip.