Misconception #1: I won’t have time to vacation on a fitness retreat.
Ketanga prides itself on incorporating not only fitness, but also adventure and relaxation into every trip they plan. This means that while you’ll typically have two challenging workouts each day, you’ll also have a significant amount of downtime during the day and in the evening with the option to lay by the pool, explore the local community, or join an excursion like zip lining, hiking, or horseback riding. It’s this kind of variety that I think makes for the ultimate, well-rounded fit-cation! Plus, if you're ever feeling tired or sore, you are welcome to skip a workout - it's YOUR vacation and Ketanga wants everyone to take what they need out of the experience.
Misconception #2: The workouts will be too hard... or too easy!
You don’t have to be a certified yogi or personal trainer to join a Ketanga Fitness Retreat! The coaches (who are certified trainers) are prepared to modify exercises and offer options for all skill and comfort levels. In fact, a retreat creates a small, group-training atmosphere where the coach is able to monitor and support each individual through the workout to tailor specific exercises and increase or decrease intensity levels. Throughout the retreat, you’ll have access to your retreat coach (or coaches) to get all of your fitness (and sometimes nutrition) questions answered, and you can even set goals for working out back home.
Misconception #3: Food options will be limited.
Actually, you’ll be able to eat whatever you want! There’s no diet that retreat participants are expected to follow and there are no restrictions on any food or type of eating. However, Ketanga always makes sure there are healthy choices available to you where you are staying, and you may get a few free samples of health-oriented snacks in your welcome bag for when you need a little pick-me-up. Also, many of the retreat coaches are also qualified to provide guidance on meal prep, cooking techniques and how to best follow a diet that supports your training.
Depending on the location of the retreat, sometimes all the meals will be included, and other times you will have the freedom to visit authentic local restaurants, but either way, Ketanga feels strongly about getting to know the local culture - and cuisine - especially on international trips! Whether that's learning to make ceviche in Costa Rica or trying Banks beer in Barbados, they work hard to make sure you're well fed and experiencing new things. And if you have dietary restrictions? No problem. And as long as you provide your information in advance, your individual preferences will always be accommodated.
Misconception #4: I'll be doing yoga all day!
While Ketanga offers dedicated yoga retreats, most of their trips run the fitness gamut. Ketanga was actually founded to provide more variety in the wellness retreat world (which was already saturated with yoga)! So, from Pilates to HIIT to boxing, there is something for everyone whether that means yoga or something else!
Misconception #5: I won't have any fun because I won't know anybody!
Fitness retreats attract people with similar interests – fitness, adventure, travel... And most of Ketanga's guests actually come by themselves (me included!). What do you get when you have a trip full of strangers who enjoy many of the same things? New friends! There is plenty of time to bond beyond the mats. Go horseback riding, lounge by the pool or discover a new restaurant with your retreat-mates. Ketanga makes it feel safe and fun to travel by yourself without ever being alone.
Have any questions about retreat life or something to add to the list? Comment below!
Amy Furman is an eternal idealist who enjoys diving into a good book as much as she enjoys sweating off the stress of NYC living and traveling to new places (all of which brought her to Ketanga Fitness!).
1. Take a Fitness Class Together
Get your sweat on! Ask a friend to join you for a yoga, spin or any group fitness class you've been wanting to try (boxing, anyone?). Working out is more fun with a friend - and it may push you to try a little harder during those tougher reps! For some quality one-on-one time afterwards, grab a smoothie together.
2. Go to a Concert
Seeing live music is a great way to spend time with someone new. In a concert setting, there is less pressure to make constant conversation - a relief for the introverts among us! Concerts are a great opportunity to introduce your new friend to something you love, or bond over something you already have in common. Bonus: dancing is great exercise!
Not sure where to turn for an up-to-date and comprehensive list of shows? We suggest downloading the Bandsintown app to see who's playing in your city on any given day.
3. Gallery Hop
Feed your creative side with an afternoon of art. Map out a few galleries and spend an afternoon with a friend jumping from one to the next, chatting about what you like (or don't) and why. Up for a challenge? Set a step goal - aim for 10,000!
4. Plan a Picnic
Warm weather is around the corner, and after a long winter hibernating, there's no better place to be than outside. Pick up some healthy noms you love, ask your friend to do the same, and meet for lunch in your favorite park. Feeling creative? Make it a potluck and recipe swap. Nothing brings people together like snacks and sunshine.
Try out a few of these and let us know how they go! Want to take it to the next level? Grab a friend and sign up for a fitness retreat! Whether a weekend getaway for workouts and wine in the North Fork or a week of sunshine, site seeing and sweating in Europe, you can't beat the mix of workouts, fun activities and relaxing down time!
1. Get rid of your old gym clothes
Still wearing that white t-shirt with the armpit stains? Still hanging onto that ratty pair of leggings with a hole in the leg? Did you buy a ton of new clothes at the beginning of the year that have been sitting in the back of your closet for four months? It's time to say goodbye to the old and the clutter-causers. If your clothes are in decent to good condition, consider donating them to Goodwill!
2. Simplify and streamline your fitness memberships
Did you join a bevy of gyms and fitness studios at the beginning of the year? It's time to pare down. Which classes were your favorite? Which did you attend most frequently? Pick one or two that best suit your schedule, commit to them and drop the rest. Your bank account will thank you.
3. Start clean (eating)
Set yourself up for success by refreshing your pantry. Restock your fridge and cabinets with healthy whole foods: fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, unrefined grains, dried or canned beans, etc. You can donate unopened items to your local food bank.
4. Mission: inbox zero
Treat your inbox like your closet and de-clutter! Unsubscribe from email lists you never read, delete junk mail, and take time to open and sort the real messages. Need a little help? Try downloading Unroll.me - an app that will show you your subscriptions and make it easy to unsubscribe.
5. Clean out your sneaker collection
Chances are, your favorite gym shoes are in rotation well beyond their life expectancy. Sneakers are built to last approximately 3-6 months, depending on frequency and intensity of use. Simplify your shoe collection and get rid of the ones that have seen better days. You don't need a pair of sneakers for every outfit!
Have spring cleaning tips of your own that you'd like to share? Send us a message!
1. What are your favorite pre and post-workout meals?
I make certain I have enough clean energy before I work out. I usually eat a whole, cooked sweet potato 30 minutes before I lift or even while I’m walking into the gym while I’m rushing around the city. I always follow that with some protein to get the protein digestion started. My post-workout is always a whey protein shake with a banana, peanut butter, and some sort of green veggie powder. Depending on the training of the day, an appropriate meal immediately follows, keeping the macros balanced.
2. What inspired your love of fitness?
I grew up lifting weights. My father bought the family this massive home gym when I was 12 years old that was like getting a first car. I started lifting and developing pretty early. Thanks, Dad!
3. What's your go-to workout when you're traveling, and how do you plan to incorporate that into the LGBTQ Summer Preview Retreat?
I’m an outdoor guy and I’m a CRAZY travel buff so when I’m away, an outdoor beach run, hike, or elemental routine is essential. But, I’m also very much into checking out gyms all over the world. One of my favorites was one in Sumatra that had no glass on the windows, no AC, no one wearing shirts, many not wearing shoes, and a cat or two running around. But it was the heavy lifters of western Indonesia and was only $1 a day to workout! The retreat will focus on elemental fitness... playing with the Earth and using the natural landscape as our gym.
4. You volunteer as an ambassador to the Cambodian Community Dream Organization. What drew you to that cause?
Cambodia is dear to my heart. I spent the greater part of 2014 in Southeast Asia and well over a month in Cambodia. I was going through a tough time in my personal life but the people in Cambodia always inspired me and they definitely gave me a new outlook. They are warriors and survivors. But, they can use help and I can’t justify living in my Manhattan apartment and traveling the world without giving back. I go back to Cambodia and Southeast Asia often because of these wonderful people. My partner, also, is a co-founder of a charity in which we travel worldwide and help. It’s in our nature to give help to those who need it.
Staying true to his passion of giving back, Josh will be donating 10% of proceeds from his upcoming retreat with Ketanga to the Human Right Campaign. FITNUT will match that donation and also give to the Cambodian Community Dream Organization.
5. Bonus round: tell us something no one knows about you...
I think most of my close ones know this about me but I’m a total aviation geek. I love airports, planes, runway design, turbulence reports, airline rankings...all of it. I count the number of seconds it takes from V1 (when the plane rotates from runway to lift off) to 10,000 feet in the air. My boyfriend knows not to talk to me during that time. It’s my meditation. I plan to begin pilot school this year.
Want to know more about Josh? Check out FITNUT and follow him on Instagram! Want to know more about our LGBTQ Retreat this May in Costa Rica? Learn more here!