First of all, I hope you are all following on Instagram because I’ve been having so much fun over there lately! You can follow me @Ericka81 if ya fancy!

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The Refresh Summit

I spent the weekend just outside of Nashville, TN at the Refresh Summit with a great group of women, all gathered because of our love for faith, fitness and community. Blogging was also part of it for some — like me 😉

It had been years since I’ve done any kind of faith-based retreat. When I saw that my blogging friends Bobbi and Lindsay were involved, I knew I really wanted to go.

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All the ladies you see above were critical in putting together this weekend. Bobbi started Refresh with the inaugural event earlier this year. Amia was our speaker for the weekend (also moonlighting as Zumba teacher!) and she did such an amazing job.

Combined with worship from Krissy Nordhoff, who wrote the song “Your Great Name” (!!), this was exactly what I needed.


There’s something about getting away from normal life and getting into nature with other women at a similar stage in life that helps you regroup. Plus, unlike most gatherings, this one wouldn’t be all about having cocktails — which honestly always takes away from the experience for me.

We were staying in a cozy little bed and breakfast type place called the Deer Run Lodge. It was reallly cold and luckily, this place had a huge fireplace. We spent most of our time in comfy pants, warm socks and slippers (yes, I brought them!)

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What Did I Learn?

I had a time shutting down my outside world and really connecting with God but I certainly had a lot to talk with Him about. The weekend served to remind me that He never leaves and He’s always listening — and He always knows what’s best, even if I’m clueless.

I was able to find peace about one particular decision I’ve been weighing and that was a good feeling. That’s the thing — if you don’t take time to be quiet and talk with God — and then listen for His answer, you might miss it. I’m thankful He spoke to my heart this weekend and that I was quiet enough to hear it.


The other wonderful thing about the weekend was spending time with Maggie. Since she moved to TN, I never get to see her and we really needed to catch up. Both of us are going through kind of difficult times — very different ones — but we always like to talk it out on a run.

As soon as she got there, we were gabbing the whole time about every little thing and it felt good to let it all out. Maggie and I can usually just kind of word vomit everything out and know the other one is perfectly okay with it because we each get our turn. It’s awesome to have friends you can do that with!

We got to room with two awesome girls — Kimbre and Brooke — and we had bunk beds! It felt so much like summer camp, which is weird for adults but also really fun 🙂


In addition to faith, the weekend was also about fitness. Gotta love that! Friday night ended with restorative yoga at 10pm. If you know me, that’s late (and it was 11pm in DC) so I had a hard time focusing.

Saturday morning I was up for a morning workshop, then boot camp with Bobbi. I partnered up with Mags and tried to work hard! Gotta keep my arms strong when away from CrossFit of course 😉


After boot camp, we had a great lunch catered by Chipotle, who actually donated the meal! I have become the biggest Chipotle fan lately…no clue. I got some buy one get one free tickets in my marathon bag and ever since then, I’ve been hitting them up all the time. I do kind of love that they pride themselves on “food with integrity.”

Then it was on to Body Image workshop. I wasn’t sure how I felt about going. I mean, I feel like I’m beyond “body image” issues — the phrase has become so overused. Lindsay shared her eating disorder story and as expected, many others in the room have struggled with similar things.

I have to admit, it felt comforting to be honest around other women who have had eating disorders. I didn’t share really but it kind of made me want to go back to OA. It’s helpful for other things too.

That afternoon, I tried PiYo for the first time. I’ve been hearing about it everywhere lately so was excited to get a taste of it. Reina did a great job teaching it and I really enjoyed getting to know her.

I have to say, I enjoyed PiYo because it was fast-paced. It’s, as it sounds, a combo of pilates and yoga. Our space was so limited so it was hard to move but it was good to try it out.


I got a sweet new tank (see above!) and also some amazing swag from the Refresh Summit sponsors, which included:

*I might be forgetting one or two and will try to make sure I include if I did!


I have to say thanks to Bobbi for putting in so much hard work for a wonderful retreat. I finally got to meet the beautiful Rylee too!

Came home with lots of new treats to try (put the PB2 in my smoothie today!) and refreshed for the Christmas season!


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