Scratching the surface

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It's been over a week since I returned from Yoga teacher training and I've been having the hardest time putting my experience into words. When I first tried to reflect, all I could think about was my journey to yoga. But not the real journey, just the basic this is how I got here journey. I was merely scratching the surface. So forgive me if this one experience, 16 days, 200 hours turns into multiple posts. I won't deny the word vomit that is about to follow...and I hope you'll be able to deal.

When I first arrived at Yandara, I started to wonder just what I was doing there. I got off the shuttle and immediately began second guessing myself, my practice, and my overall yoga-ness. I was so afraid. Intimidated. Unsure of myself. Shy. I immediately started having flashbacks of being the awkward, nerdy kid in middle school who didn't have anyone to sit with at lunchtime. As I hauled my stuff to my little home (aka my tent) I looked around at the 20 or so other people gathered around the dinner table and started to have major butterflies. Actually, they were more like bats. Big hairy and flapping their wings like crazy.

sweat pink fit approach

I ended up picking a tent next to Kim (one of the girls who was on my shuttle from the airport) and figured it was kind of like safety in numbers (or safety in proximity??). Plus, I got a good vibe from her—or rather loved that she talked about good vibes and said everything was wicked great. I also loved that she talked about going to a rooftop bar in Cabo prior to our arrival at Yandara—it made me feel a little more connected to her and a little more at ease. I kept thinking, awesome, this girl likes rooftop bars. She isn't "too yoga-y" to drink. She probably won't judge me. And thankfully, even as crazy as I was being, I was right. My tent neighbor was super duper awesome.

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Home sweet home

But even with my super awesome shuttle buddy and new tent neighbor, there she was—my awkward inner 7th grader—in full effect. My mind was going crazy with thoughts like: are they going to like me? Who will I sit with? Will they think I'm a total poser? Who will I talk to?

And as soon as I started unpacking the very little that I had packed (aka: way unprepared) I realized that my shampoo and conditioner had exploded in my carry-on and there was literally nowhere to buy anything.  I was going to have to ask someone to loan me a few things. I was going to have to ask for help. And anyone who knows me well, knows that asking for help is one of the things I hate most.

All I could think was: shit, shit, shit...

sweat pink fit approach

A view of Yandara Yoga School from the beach. 

As I made my way to the dinner table and back to the larger group,  I heard laughter. Lots and lots of friendly voices and even more laughter. And even thought I was still very intimidated, I was also very warmly received by all (thank god!!). Being naturally shy, it was really difficult for me to open up and just let go. I felt like people (on our very first night) were being so open and vulnerable that I almost didn't feel like I could ever belong.

And in true fashion, as soon as people started asking what I did, who I was, what made me tick, I got self conscious. I'm not the girl wearing the Om symbol around my neck paired with a super flowy dress and wild, untamed hair. I'm not the girl who wears nothing but than lip balm and feels confident and ready to roll in the morning. Nope. I'm more the mascara loving, yet also outdoorsy girl that somehow fell in love with yoga. I love little black dresses, pink things, all things Lululemon, and pretty much anything and everything else that screams I'm super girly. And even though I have accepted myself and am able be ME in my running life, being that girl in my yoga life seemed much scarier.

sweat pink fit approach

My tent mate and I doing a double downward dog—awesome! Photo: Adriana Liwski

And this is where my yoga school tale truly begins. Back at the heart of things. It doesn't start with the experienced, all-knowing yogi girl. No, instead it started with an awkward 7th grader. The nervous girl at the dinner table. Full of doubt. Always second guessing. Always unsure. Uncertain. Afraid of the unknown.

My real story starts where the true yoga—self acceptance, letting go, loving myself and my practice, and being compassionate for others—really begins.

sweat pink fit approach




Jamie King

Jamie King

Lifelong athlete, Jamie King loves helping others embrace their inner athlete and find joy in movement, sweat and community. As an avid yogi, competitive ultra runner, snowboarder and former tennis player, Jamie is no stranger to a good sweat session or tough workout. She believes in challenging herself and others to be the best they can be and building people up through community, movement, laughter and friendship. Jamie developed the Flex & Flow HIIT Yoga workout to provide people with an efficient and fun way to get heart rates up, blood pumping and energy flowing. She is also the founder of the Fit Approach community, a popular online fitness community where bloggers, brands and fitness enthusiasts come together over their love for sweat and their #sweatpink lifestyle and the CEO and founder of SweatGuru, an online platform that helps people find and book the best fitness classes in their area and helps fitness professionals seamlessly manage and grow their business and the owner of Flex & Flow, a fitness and yoga studio in Portland, OR where she resides. When she’s not dripping with sweat, you can usually find her snuggling or playing ball with Abbie, her vizsla puppy or exploring all of the great restaurants, and beautiful outdoors in the PNW.


20 thoughts on Scratching the surface

  • Such a great post. It’s always good to get outside your comfort zone – that’s something you make..err, “help” me to do all the time! And so far it’s been nothing but good for me.

    • Oh, I’m so glad you’re not sick of hearing about it already…! It was a great experience, I highly recommend. 😉

  • I’m so proud of you for surviving and thriving during what sounds like an emotionally and physically VERY INTENSE 16 days.

    You’ve inspired me to do a training myself, and to think of yoga as a way to continue growing.

    • Thank you – I will tell more about the struggles and humor in upcoming posts…this is just the beginning! 😉

    • Awww, thank you Davia. Happy to share my experience…don’t you worry, more to come! 🙂 Working through everything still.

  • awww jamie! i feel honored! so very honored to have known you from the VERY START and now to see this side! i wish i had known you were feeling 7th gradish – i saw a very mature business owner 🙂 the more i got to know you the more respect and love i felt for you – i think you and yoga is an obvious good match. sending you lots of love and looking forward to the next post 🙂

    p.s. did i just hear you say namaste? or i’m nastay?

    haha – love you!

    • AWWW, tent buddy 😉 you’re wicked sweet. Thank you for the sweet comment. Honestly, I was the most awkward, nervous person for the longest time. I was so embarrassed having to ask all you ladies to loan me things because I had way underpacked….um, flashlight…shampoo, conditioner….eck then toothpaste! I kept thinking they’re all wondering who the F is this chick?!?!?!? HAHAHAH.

      I think you have wicked good vibes and totally am honored to have gotten to know you and live next door to you for a whole 16 days! XOXOXO

  • I am so happy I came across this! I am going to Hawaii in 2 months for the Yandara yoga teacher training program and have been super nervous. I am shy and have started to second guess myself for wanting to go. I feel like I am not experienced enough and not good enough and everyone will judge me. This post as made me feel a little at ease about going. Glad you had a great experience, I hope I do too.

    • OMg, have the best time and let me know how it goes. Hope to hear from you soon!! And so glad my post helped you feel more confident in your journey!

  • Thank you for sharing your thoughts (or at least some of them!) about the Yandara program. I am currently contemplating taking it as well, and your post was reassuring because I feel like I would be the exact same way in that situation (shy, reserved, afraid I won’t fit in).

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