Behind the scenes at Helen Razer’s Wellness Week
Helen isn’t on this kayak…
We first met Charlotte Dodson on a relaxing wellness week on Lord Howe Island (read more about that here). As keen yogis, we jumped at the opportunity to spend a whole week practicing yoga with Charlotte. Since then, Charlotte has become a friend, yoga mentor and a lover of Nimble Activewear.
Charlotte is an internationally renowned yoga life coach and motivational speaker. London born and based in Sydney, she has taken the world by storm and teaches clients such as Miranda Kerr, Orlando Bloom, Gerard Butler, Basil Iwanyk, Phoebe Tonkin, Stephanie Rice, Lara Bingle and Leah Wood.
Please share with us a little more insight into how you came to be on this path?
Yoga actually found me — it was a blessing in disguise! It became a huge part of my healing after I broke my arm surfing. It was my awakening to the life-altering benefits of this practice — after a decade of studying, participating and teaching across four continents, yoga is now my full-time focus. I realized there was much more I could offer to others in life, more ways I could serve the greater good. Yoga is my pure passion and it will stay with me for the rest of my days.
What type of yoga do you practise? Is this a different style to what you teach?
I personally practice Ashtanga yoga every morning with my incredible teacher, Eileen Hall. She has aided me immensely in deepening my knowledge and appreciation for yoga. I meet my clients wherever they’re at – whether they are new to yoga, or have practiced for years. Every class may differ, depending on their emotional, mental and spiritual state, as well as the physical side of things. I pride myself on progressing (and adjusting) my clients to ensure they get the most out of their practice.
What does your typical day look like?
I’m an early riser and practice yoga everyday, even if it means getting up at 3am! Whether I’m hosting wellness weeks, media events or filming – my day is jam packed with spreading good vibes, loving the people around me and enjoying the moment!
What motto or mantra do you live by?
LIVE, LOVE, LAUGH!
What advice would you give to someone wanting to start yoga?
Any yoga practice is a great place to start, whether it’s at your local gym or yoga school – you’ll always take something home from the experience. You can always join my Yoga TV site – charlottedodson.tv – and ask me any questions along the way via the Live Chat option. With your teacher and yoga style, it’s a personal choice – so if you haven’t yet found a yoga you resonate with, please keep trying! Yoga is for every shape, size and background, and once you find your ultimate yoga space, you’ll be forever grateful.
What are you up to next?
I’m so blessed to have so many exciting projects on the horizon! As well as featuring in a new branded entertainment TV show as the resident ‘Yoga Life Coach’ (airing early next year)… I’ve recently been approached to develop a specialized entertainment program as the Content provider and Global Brand Ambassador for a new health related channel which will be available world-wide… stay tuned, more details to follow!
Lastly, what are your favourite Nimble Activewear pieces and why?
I love the pastel range because they’re so pretty, light, refreshing with a feminine yet sporty touch!
Join celebrity yoga instructor Charlotte Dodson for a four day wellness retreat at Cable Beach Club Resort and Spa.
This is a great opportunity to rejuvenate and revitalise your body and mind under the guidance of Charlotte, whose clients include Miranda Kerr, Orlando Bloom, Gerard Butler, Lara Bingle, Stephanie Rice, Kit Willow, Camilla Franks and Leah Wood.
Born in London, Charlotte studied and practiced yoga for over 15 years in London, India, New York and Sydney. Her sessions are described as “dynamic yet elegant and simplistic with a unique focus on bold creativity and grounded energy.”
The wellness retreat is limited to just 12 people and bookings are subject to availability. For more information please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (08) 9426 8865.
Lord Howe Island is known as a place of peace, tranquility and seclusion. For many guests, a week on Lord Howe is their only chance to escape the persistent phone calls, emails and traffic jams of the ‘real world’, and enjoy a much simpler lifestyle that rejuvenates mind, body and soul.
A Pinetrees holiday has always featured healthy food, daily exercise in spectacular locations, massage, socialising with like-minded people and, of course, sleeping. From 18-22 May 2015, 30 August-4 September 2015, 19-23 October 2015 and 16-20 November 2015, we’ll structure these activities, engage some expert practitioners and host four rejuvenating Wellness Weeks.
Over five days, we’ll offer a daily program of yoga, spa treatments, massage, adventure fitness, wholefood cooking classes and organic gardening classes, as well as our ‘normal’ repertoire of swimming, snorkelling, diving, surfing, kayaking, walking, golf, biking and mountain climbing. Combine these activities with three gourmet meals every day, organic wine tasting and a complete disconnect from the outside world, and you’ll experience one of the most rejuvenating weeks of your life. You’ll also learn a range of new skills to help continue a healthier lifestyle at home. Our Wellness Weeks have had great feature articles in the Australian Yoga Journal, Green Lifestyle Magazine, Women’s Fitness Magazine and The Glow. More details at www.pinetrees.com.au
Thanks to film maker Andy Lloyd for his creative talent and enthusiasm. www.andylloydcreative.com
Thanks also to Charlotte Dodson for her patience and grace.
If you love your yoga, health and wellness then you may have heard of celebrity yoga instructor Charlotte Dodson. Having trained high profile celebrities such as Miranda Kerr, Orlando Bloom, Gerard Butler and Lara Bingle, this in-demand instructor is hot property in Sydney where her dynamic yoga sessions are often booked out months in advance.
One of my favourite places to holiday IN THE WORLD, Cable Beach Club Resort & Spa in Broome is bringing Charlotte Dodson over for their first ever Wellness Retreat, and I’m going too!
This four-day Wellness Retreat includes guided daily yoga sessions, treatments at Cable Beach Club’s award winning spa Chahoya, dinner at each of its signature restaurants, cooking sessions and daily group fitness sessions.
I’m looking forward to returning home feeling inspired, refreshed and stronger within myself.
There are two chief categories of human at a health retreat and in my modest experience, one of them is absolutely not me. I’m the sort who has a few cheeky pinots one school night and, after a frank look at my thighs, books the Inner Wisdom package online in a moment of self-loathing. She’s not like that. She’s the sort who planned this well in advance as part of an ongoing program of ‘wellness’ and ‘self-care’.
I’m the sort who can’t say either ‘wellness’ or ‘self-care’ without cracking up. She’s much nicer than me. Her Ayurvedic body type is Vata.
Actually, I refuse to have an Ayurvedic body type. And I refuse to go to swallow the east-meets-west grab-bag of science-lite nonsense purveyed by most wellness retreats. But, what I don’t refuse is handing over the care of myself entirely to a Totalitarian Health Regime. Because, goodness knows I need it more than slender, self-disciplined Vata.
And it is independent Vata and not Baby Razer who may be best suited to the pillowy Polynesian setting of Lord Howe Island for a relatively self-guided health-retreat. While marvellously free of the hippy drivel one must generally bear at dedicated health resorts, it is also free of supervision. And I’m the kind of infant who yearns for discipline.
In recent years, I have taken the standard week-long retreat at Golden Door and Gwinganna. A deep aversion to health hocus pocus notwithstanding, I found great benefit in both experiences. By which I obviously mean, my thighs looked a shit-ton better after five days of kale, bushwalking and sadistic ballet Pilates. I also reduced my caffeine intake and slowed the pace of my light-speed temper. But. Who are we kidding? We of the I-booked-drunk-online wellness cult don’t cough up two grand to become better humans. We do it to become hotter.
Helen isn’t on this kayak…
But, there are many people who do it to become better. These are the people who exercise regularly and cook healthfully and Just Say No to all of the things to which I am inexorably drawn. (Sugar. Coffee. Booze. Making fun of reiki healing.) They are already super-hot and look great even in Lorna Jane’s most ill-advised lycra blend. They actually go to these places for fun. And these people, whom I genuinely admire, would thrive in the ‘self-care’ atmosphere of the Lord Howe week.
I tend to prosper under discipline. This is because I have all the self-restraint of a young cocker spaniel and I need a grownup to tell me what to do. The staff at Gwinganna in particular are among the nation’s most gently persuasive puppy trainers and I love, love, love that they knock, softly but authoritatively, on one’s door every morning at dawn. They force one to perform a week’s worth of exercise before breakfast every single day and they take bowel motions very seriously. In a single week. I enjoyed three conversations with staff about my poo, one rectal lavage, one bowel massage and one excellent seminar on Advanced Shitting. I very much enjoyed my return to the anal stage and for me, the most efficient route to better habits is being treated again like a child. Gwinganna is like a sandalwood Nanny who wipes your arse, coaxes you out of bed and makes you eat your greens.
The Wellness Week at Lord Island’s Pinetrees is, by contrast, like hanging out with your really together big sister. She doesn’t insist that you do anything but leads by beautiful example.
For a few precious months each year, compact blonde yogi to-the-stars Charlotte Dodson is the centrepiece of a week intended to help you shift gears and achieve hitherto untried bendy-ness. Before breakfast and dinner, her excellent classes in hatha had me attempting the sort of crochet normally better left to human wool. She is a teacher of the sort who tends to hands-on correction which I, being the sort who loves to be babied, really appreciate.
These classes, mercifully short on hocus pocus chit-chat, are appended with bushwalks led by the lodge’s charming hosts. Many of which I did not attend because unless someone talks to me like I am an idiot toddler, I tend not to respond. I need clear guidelines; not serving suggestions. And so I found the relaxed nature of the quite lovely resort prompted me only to sit on my arse and read seven terrible celebrity autobiographies in a row. No one guilt-tripped me and no one stopped me from drinking coffee and cramming the afternoon tea treats intended for non-wellness guests into my filthy facehole.
I may have returned home 1.5 kilograms heavier but on the upside, I do have an improved understanding of Chelsea Handler’s long and dangerous battle with frozen food.
On paper, this health-vacation looks set to deliver promising results and it certainly may do so for someone who is a little bit more grownup than me. (Read: just about everyone north of ten.) And certainly, the presence of a friend or a partner might have shored up my commitment to flexibility and fat-loss. But I was the only guest going stag and even though I am a creditably sociable type, I felt – as one never does at Gwinganna which is packed with other singles – like Nigella No Friends.
There was, it should be said, a large group of late-thirties ladies having a marvellous and productive time. I mean, frankly, it’s kind of difficult not to be impressed by a place that looks much as though the producers from Lost passed it over for unfeasible beauty.
Do you look after yourself? No, do you really look after yourself? There’s more to being healthy than a few gym sessions and some carrot sticks. Here’s our guide on healthy habits for the whole day.
Rise and shine! Now we’ve kicked back the covers on Day Light Savings, there’s no excuse to stay in bed. Start the day the right way, with a jog or even just a walk with the dog. The sun is out and it’s that special time of year when the air is crisp but not too cold.
If you feel the cold, try to get your blood pumping. YouTube Yoga is a great way to energise without having to venture outdoors. We love Charlotte Dodson’s own online Yoga TV channel, where you can join a session, embrace some positivity and stick around for a live chat afterwards.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite, stock up on all your essential vitamins with a Green smoothie. There are plenty of different recipes floating around and if you’re a first time green smoothie drinker, The Healthy Chef Teresa Cutter has some great advice on how to milk the most out of your mix. Lauren Glucina, the brain behind Ascension Kitchen, has created the Green Smoothie App, with plenty of recipes and tips for each day. Tip: don’t be afraid to customise your recipes with boosters. Try adding a bit of coconut water, spirulina or a dash of lemon for added antioxidants.