I recently embarked on the magical journey of becoming a 200 hour certified yoga teacher. I chose a two week immersive training in the enchanted mountains of Montana.

The retreat center was the same place I visited in the fall of 2021 and fell in love with the quiet, quaint environment. I had such a spirtiual and empowering experience there I knew I would be back eventually.

When I found out there would be a teacher training in the summer of 2022 I remember thinking, “well, I guess I’m getting certified to teach yoga.” I began consistently showing up on my mat. Day after day, my yoga practice became a part of me, connecting to my breath and moving my body quickly became a grounding act that kept me sane. If I was going to be talking the talk of teaching, I figured I should start walking the walk sooner rather than later.

The two weeks in the immersive training were spent studying yoga, practicing yoga, getting introduced to teaching, actually teaching, hiking, biking, cold-plunging, making life long friends, and consuming huckleberry flavored everything.

I felt deeply connected to Mother Earth in Montana. The slower, relaxed pace of life out there is something I yearn for when I’m submerged in the city, the everpresent mixture of engines and commotion clogging my mental.

I even found an ally in myself while in Montana. “Be a sweet friend to yourself,” someone said one day as we were trudging through the 11th hour of movement.

The group of 13 attendees were all women. We quickly became cheerleaders for one another, encouraging each other through flows, hikes, and the emotional release we all seemed to somewhat experience while in the mountains. Several of us booked reunion trips before the training was even over.

The weather got colder at night than I would have imagined for late June, dipping down into freezing a couple nights. It was suprising how long daylight remained in the sky though. Even though the sun began it’s descent around nine pm, light lingered close to 11 pm most nights. It was an adjustment going to sleep before dark. The birds’ melodies were still echoing the skies as my exhausted head hit my pillow.

I knew I would be learning a ton during this training, I was excited to soak up so much knowledge, but I hadn’t fully grasped the new insight of myself I would fly back home with. On the flight back to Nashville, I felt lighter, refreshed, and full of purpose. I knew everything would be different once I settled back in at home. For starters, I was going to be teaching the beautiful art of yoga. I had deepened my own practice tenfold and was going to get to share my knowledge with my future students.

Since getting home, I’ve had the incredible honor of landing two yoga teaching positons and a private client. One at my home studio Hot Yoga in East Nashville and another at a skate shop, Asphalt Beach. Who knew buying a pair of skates would lead to a yoga job? But that’s another story for another time. The private client, six months pregant, wanted gentle, soothing movement while in the comfort of her own home. I immediately ordered a bolster and dove into yin yoga and restorative yoga to write flows for her.

I finally feel like I’m at a point in my life where my hard work is paying off and I’m moving in the direction towards my dreams and goals. I’m practicing yoga frequently, continuing to study the fascinating literature behind the empowering movements, and incorparting my new skills into working with clients on their paths.