An escape from reality
PUBLISHED: 16:41 31 October 2016 | UPDATED: 16:41 31 October 2016
Sensational therapeutic weekender amidst historic and peaceful surroundings
After the excesses of summer indulgence, the majority of us feel we need to recharge our batteries and begin our healthy habits once again. This means returning back to the everyday routine of our usual responsibilities, which evidently we all dread.
So when the fabulous Sandra Bickmore, owner of CoreFit Pilates in Buckhurst Hill, invited my sister and I to join her and fellow participants on her first wellbeing weekend retreat from September 9th-11th, I simply couldn’t refuse. Located at a beautiful 16th century grade II listed house, the Inner Guidance Retreat Centre in Lavenham Suffolk certainly proved to be a blessing in disguise and demonstrated how much myself and others really needed this break.
I had never experienced a health fitness retreat before so I was very open-minded to what was involved in this particular programme. I must say, however, that my expectations were certainly proven wrong and I really underestimated the breadth of knowledge and skills I would be taking home with me and how revitalised I would feel after just three days!
Sandra was a fantastic host and she really created something innovative with this trip and made her mark on ensuring that this retreat would be different to any other. With more than 20 years experience under her belt, her passion was obviously apparent and reflected on to others, making it more than just enjoyable and fun. She was very attentive in all of the fitness classes, which included Pilates, Booty Barre, Yoga and catered to all abilities, but also encouraged everyone to push their boundaries if they wished.
The timetable contained, but was not restricted to fitness classes and ‘free time’, which was often spent exploring the surrounding area, chilling with other fellow retreaters or sneaking a cheeky nap! Guests were also able to indulge in delicious ‘out of this world’ vegan dishes. Cooked by Dominic and his team, the food was preservative-, wheat-, gluten-, sugar- and dairy free, which really opened up my eyes to new ways of cooking. During this trip I never thought I could survive without my ultimate weakness: sugar. But when you are cooked inventive yet delectable food like this, your sugar cravings slowly start to dissolve.
One aspect, which was really special for me, was sitting around a large table in the old dining room with my fellow retreaters. Everyone on this trip was very relaxed and I thoroughly enjoyed learning about each individual and why they decided to come on this retreat. There were some very interesting conversations over the dinner table and it was nice to see some lovely friendships developing over the weekend.
Sandra is looking forward to hosting another retreat in the next few months or so. Stay tuned for further details and hopefully see you there!
CoreFit Pilates ‘The Loft’
156 Queen’s Road,
0208 504 7305