Whether it's a new park, a new pose, or a new country, Fahrenheit teacher and studio manager, Rebecca Campbell, loves to explore. Born and raised in central Florida, Rebecca has traveled all over the world, touching down in France, Germany, Mexico, Austria, and Costa Rica...just to name a few. While she admittedly hated Costa Rica on her first visit, she wasn't convinced that she was right about her opinion. She went back a few years ago and true to most CR experiences, she fell in love! Now her love of travel and love of yoga are creating quite the marriage, in June she's hosting a yoga retreat in Costa Rica and you're invited!
Q: Tell me a little bit about yourself, have you always lived in Nashville?
Rebecca: Nope! I was born and raised in central Florida. I was always involved in the arts growing up (band, chorus, dance, etc) and majored in music at Florida State University. I have my BA in Music from FSU and moved to Nashville in 2009 to work in the music industry. I was the Director of Operations for a small label when I first moved here but felt I wasn’t in my dream job and there wasn’t much room to grow in such a small company. So I did a lot of little jobs for awhile and then found my way into the corporate world for a few years before I found yoga.
Q: So when did you start practicing yoga? Tell me about your first class…
Rebecca: I took my first yoga class in 2010. I saw a Groupon for hot yoga. I had hated yoga before (in a living room On Demand….), but I was running at the time and so many people in the running world said it was a great way to stretch the hips and hamstrings, I figured I’d try it again. I went to my first class with Chanda. It had never occurred to me that a fitness class would last more than an hour. Around the time triangle pose came I began thinking, “We have to be nearing an hour, how much longer can this class last?” It wasn’t long before Chanda told us to lay down, and she added, “We have 30 more minutes on the floor.” I was annoyed. Why would a class be longer than an hour? How could anyone possibly want to be in the heat for 90 minutes?!? Let alone, MOVE in that heat! But I didn’t give up. I left thinking I would never go back. Then logic and reason took over and reminded me that I couldn’t really afford to waste money. I had bought a Groupon so I was going to get my money’s worth. At least there was no down dog.
Q Ha! You were stuck! I love it! How did you go from that experience to teaching? Was there a defining moment that made you want to teach yoga?
Rebecca: Honestly, the first time I took training, my motivation was learning to practice on my own so I didn’t have to pay for classes. I burned out after 6 months of teaching. It was another 3 years before I realized that yoga was my path, but I had been approaching it all wrong. I quit my corporate job and signed up for another teacher training. The first weekend of that teacher training I had an amazing “Ah-ha” moment where it hit me that I was supposed to do this.
Q: That makes total sense! A lot of students take teacher training for their own personal practice alone. We're grateful you realized there was a bigger impact you were supposed to make with your teaching, you're such an important voice in our community! Let's switch subjects a bit and talk about your love of exploring...where has your wanderlust spirit taken you?
Rebecca: I have always enjoyed exploring in all its forms, whether it’s a new park, a new country, or a new yoga pose. I’ve been around the US, but mostly in the southeast. My first big trip was a cruise sometime in middle school to Mexico. In high school, we did a spring break trip to France and Spain. I went to Costa Rica for the first time around 2006 with my church to do some mission work. We helped build a church in a tiny little town and led VBS for the kids. I hated it (more on that in a minute). Then the summer between junior and senior year of college, I did a study abroad course in Salzburg, Austria. While there I did some touring around Austria, Germany, and the Czech Republic and my parents met me at the end of the program to go to Italy. Since I had hated Costa Rica the first time and so many people loved it, I wanted to go back. My mom and I planned a trip in 2011. I fell IN LOVE! I will go back any chance I get. Phew! It seems like such a long list when I write it all out. I am very blessed and lucky to have traveled as much as I have at this point in my life.
Q: And now you're planning a Fahrenheit yoga retreat in Costa Rica! That's bound to be the trip of a lifetime! Who should plan on being there?
Rebecca: YES! Everyone should plan on being there. I wanted to organize this retreat so that our students would have a chance to step out of their everyday lives and tune back into themselves. We so often get lost in the routine of life that we forget who we are and who we want to be in the world. Sometimes even a “vacation” doesn’t give us the fresh perspective we need to get back in touch. We have all been on those vacations where we’re glad to be home and get back to normal life, the retreat will be different. It’s a chance to relax, unwind, and see what happens. It’s also a chance to really focus on your yoga practice - whatever that means for you. We will be doing some guided meditations and each class will have a “theme” to think about or focus on to help us reconnect to who we are and what we want for this world. I’m also offering private lessons and mini 1-on-1 posture workshops for those that want to go a little deeper in their asana practice.
Q: That sounds amazing! I've never been on a yoga retreat before, so tell me what does a typical day look like?
Rebecca: I’m still finalizing all the details of the schedule. But we will have 2 classes each day and 2-3 evening meditations throughout the week. I’m offering private lessons and mini-posture workshops for those that want to take advantage. The resort has a spa and also offers excursions. There will be a tour of the surrounding coffee plantation. And of course, there will be plenty of time to relax.
Q: FUN! What are some of the extra excursions people can choose from?
Rebecca: Costa Rica has so much to offer! The resort has their own packages including activities such as boat tours, whitewater rafting, hot springs visit, volcano hikes, etc. Even if the resort doesn’t include something in one of their excursions packages, they can arrange just about anything you might want to do. Zip-lining is a popular choice!
Q: You said before you hated Costa Rica the first time you visited, and now that you've been back that's changed. What makes Costa Rica so special?
Rebecca: It’s really hard to describe. They have a saying down there: Pura Vida. It means Pure Life. You really get the feeling that people there care about life. Not just their own, but each others and the environment around them as well. If you do a google search, you might see a lot of references to Blue Zones. A Blue Zone is a concept used to identify a demographic and/or geographic area of the world where people live measurably longer lives. Even though the whole country is not labeled a Blue Zone, it feels like it. There is so much love and care taken towards the environment around them.
Q: That sounds beautiful! I love that insight! If you were to give us a few words as a personal "takeaway" from participating and/or leading yoga retreats, what would that be?
It’s a chance to explore YOU!
Q: And what can students plan to leave this retreat with?
Rebecca: Students can plan to leave this retreat with a new perspective on their life. It may be something small like a new habit they want to incorporate or it may be a whole new direction for their life. You won’t know unless you come find out! :)
Q: I'm sure so many people are excited to learn where can they find more information...
When: June 11th-16th
Where: Pura Vida Retreat & Spa in Costa Rica
So exciting, Rebecca! Thank you for taking the time to share more about yourself and this incredible opportunity to dive deeper into your yoga practice in Costa Rica. I know this retreat will change so many lives!
Rebecca Campbell: I began my yoga journey several years ago at a small studio called FitRx. I hated my first practice but kept going anyway. Within the month, I decided to become a teacher and I completed my first teacher training and taught for 6 months. Then I thought I needed a full-time job and quit all things yoga. Two-and-a-half years later I realized how miserable I was. I thought back to how happy I was teaching yoga and quit my job to complete a second teacher training. During that second teacher training, I came to the realization that teaching yoga is my purpose in life.