First, you guys are THE BEST. So many of you have been asking about my Writer's Retreat at the end of March and since I had so many pretty (and random) photos ... I put together a fun post!
Second, thank you to my dear clients who moved around THEIR schedules so I could disappear and write-write-write for a week. Thank you, thank you!
It had been really hard focusing on writing my book in NYC.
The energy of seeing multiple clients a day (via Skype, phone or in person) is *much* different than sitting down to WRITE A BOOK.
Throw in answering unlimited emails, posting on Instagram, going to my daily workouts and managing the admin side of my business and personal life, my brain felt scattered and ... the writing just wasn't coming.
I got a little scared for awhile. Will I ever write this book?
But thankfully, I remembered advice from my Writing Course. Some writers can segment out 30 minute chunks every single day and write-write-write. Some writers need to schedule three day retreats in the woods and batch their writing during long stretches of unstructured time. Um YEAH, the WOODS one. That's me.
So, I decided I needed to make a Writers Retreat happen.
I looked in to AirBnB options in the forests of Vermont + Upstate New York, and frankly, spending $100-150 a night to go away solo to a somewhat creepy cabin with an iffy refrigerator just didn't make sense for my budget or my mind.
So I googled flights to Florida, where my parents are now living. CHEAP FLIGHTS!!!! SCORE!!!
I asked my Mom if I could come for a self-imposed Writer's Retreat and if I could, you know, have some space ... my own room and hours upon hours of uninterrupted time. She was SO in to the idea and promised to stock the fridge in advance, give me keys to the car and wave to me in the hallway as to not interrupt my writing process. Thank you writer gods and moms!
Social Media Detox
I knew I needed to tune out 100% from social media (Instagram is my biggest distractor and addiction) and my dear client emails in order to focus-focus-focus.
Monday through Friday, starting at 8 or 9am each day and going until 5pm-ish, I would write. I sometimes went for walks when I felt myself getting stuck and I voice recorded sentences on to my iPhone. I rearranged my entire outline and built out content in each chapter.
I wrote approximately 33% of my book.
And yes, that accuracy may sound crazy, but it's not really! Read on!
The title of my book is still somewhat secret as I'm working with a lawyer to trademark it. . . but I'm happy to share the subtitle: "100 Ways to Optimize Your Nutrition, Fitness & Wellness in an Urban Environment."
I've officially outlined all 100 ways, with comprehensive sub-points and I've written-ish the first 33 ways!
The first third of the book is about Nutrition in urban living, the middle third is about Fitness in the big city and the last section is all about Wellness: self-care, stressing-less and navigating the noise living in the urban jungle.
And since I'm a bit "written out" for now ....
Here's my week, in photos!
I flew down early Saturday morning to spend quality family time with my mom, dad and brother who was visiting. FUN. FUN. FUN!
View from the Yacht Club roof, belatedly celebrating my Mom's birthday on Saturday night.
Beaching on Sunday. After this dreary and cold March we had in New York City .... I had to get tan and stock up on my Vitamin D levels before locking myself away with my laptop!
You guys, I love views of the sky (and from the tops of mountains). Hello, #FitVista. So inspiring.
I was feeling a bit apprehensive Monday morning before I opened up my laptop and dove in to my outline. I'd written my outline way back in January 2016 and I wasn't sure if it would be up to my admittedly high standards . . . So I decided to pull an "angel card" from a deck of Kris Carr cards my mom had in the guest room and picked this one!
I'd just spent two days at the beach .... and now I was ready to trailblaze, make some waves with my book.
I tried to keep food light and eat about 5 small meals a day. Green smoothie with vegan protein powder and 1/2 avocado for one mini-meal.
Turns out I didn't even need the car keys, because I went for 1-2 hour walks each day and stayed on the premise, with very little distractions (or human interactions!). I'd bring along my iPhone and record sentences on my long walks, audio writing notes and paragraphs when I felt inspired.
Writers block? Out for another walk.
Another mini-meal. I was definitely hungry again like 2 hours later. Not pictured, all the hummus that went along with this one!
You guys, I had two cups of coffee a day. Ever since I healed from adrenal fatigue, I promised myself #JUSTONECUP. But I rationed that writing a book was worth bending the rules.
This is my favorite mug of my mom's.
Almond butter on gluten-free toast, FTW. Always. My favorite snack or mini-meal.
Went on two 50-minute sweaty runs when I wrapped for the day around 5:30pm!
I thought I'd run more, but honestly, I wanted to focus all my energy on writing and my body didn't want hard workouts. I went for lots of walks and did yoga once.
I can't wait to start sharing book excerpts with you in a couple months ... Not ready to share any book excerpts yet, as everything is like only 60-80% edited and I'm still fine-tuning my voice.
Alex bought me these Bose headphones for Christmas and they were a GODSEND. It was pretty quiet in the guest room at my parent's house, but this drowned out the sound of occasional lawn mowers, vacuums and helped me get in the zone. The sound quality is incredible. I particularly have liked blocking out all the bad noise on airplanes and getting cozy with podcasts during flights. Thanks Alex! He's so thoughtful and understands how sometimes my highly sensitive nature just needs QUIET.
This was administration building where I walked on the first day to mail my FitVista, LLC Taxes for 2016. $$$$. I'm actually pretty darn proud "how much I had to pay" = a sign of my booming biz success ... right?! ;)
Wore the same outfit EVERY DAY and didn't wash my hair for four days. Yup. Simplicity.
A high moment. There were lows too, but mostly highs.
Little sneak peak! Again, not edited AT ALL. Just mind dumping everyyyyywhere.
FRIDAY! I cut loose with appetizers, two glasses of wine, salad, and then ice-cream. (I swear there was more to this salad, I ate the good bits and then decided to take a photo).
There was quinoa buried under there too. I ate SO many eggs this week. Eggs fried in ghee. Talk about an easy protein to throw together for mini-meals. Love, love pasture-raised eggs.
My biggest weaknesses for unlimited snacking .... granola and chocolate covered ANYTHING. Absolutely no breaks. Can't keep them in my own house. But my parents *always* have them around.
The sky on the last night was stunning - quite the send-off for a productive and exhilarating week! Thank you so much for reading!
Want more fun updates and excerpts from my book? Keep tabs with me on Instagram at @michellefitvista and sign-up for updates here on my site, you'll be the first to get sneak peeks and free content in a couple months. (Don't worry, I usually only email like .... once every two months!).
End on a sweet note! Ice-cream, MORE granola and MORE chocolate. Xo.