‘Women: Living In Balance’ set for this weekend in Vail | VailDaily.com

‘Women: Living In Balance’ set for this weekend in Vail

Special to the Daily/Jack Affleck
Jack Affleck |

Dr. Saralyn Mark said humans are designed to live a life of wellness —that seems simple enough. But with all our over-stressing, over-achieving, over-eating, over-thinking, over-doing — she said we just make things complicated.

Thursday through Saturday, Mark will facilitate the second Vail Living Well Experience, presented by the Sonnenalp Hotel in conjunction with the DiscoverWell nonprofit organization. The three-day event, themed “Women: Living in Balance,” will focus on how to balance all aspects of health and well-being in daily life.

Move mind and body

“With our relaxing locale along Gore Creek and pristine mountain views, our Vail Living Well Experience guests will reside in the best learning environment possible.”
Patricia McNamara
Sonnenalp’s director of sales and marketing

“I think this is a fantastic opportunity for women to reconnect to their health and bring to light the challenging issues in their lives,” Mark said. “It’s important to take time out of our daily world and go into a setting where we can receive information, bond with other women and engage in physical exercise.”

Mark will guide the retreat through daily discussion and activities in an overall collaboration with other health and wellness leaders, which will bring to light top research on gender differences as they relate to exercise, medicine, aging and other aspects of health. Additionally, Dr. Nanette Santoro will lead discussions on hormonal health, Dr. Cheryl Chessick will lead sessions on emotional health, and nutritionist Julie Hill will lead discussions about specific women’s needs in nutrition for both the athlete and for daily life.

Each day of “Women: Living in Balance” will incorporate evidence-based, interactive sessions covering all aspects of women’s health and prevention. On the Shrine Pass trail on Friday, physical activities include a birding hike with Chessick or an invigorating hike with local trainer Ellen Miller. A functional movement and balance training class will be held on Saturday with Laina Eskin, founder of Align Vail.

Hill is on the Colorado Governor’s Council for Active and Healthy Living. She said that along with Governor John Hickenlooper, the council is dedicated to making Colorado the healthiest state in the nation.

“We at the Governor’s Council are focusing on helping individuals in this state to stay healthy or become healthier,” Hill said. “I have a wonderful opportunity to speak at the upcoming Vail Living Well Experience on nutrition. My session will be designed to create healthier eating habits and to inspire healthy lifestyle changes, and to provide education on all the dimensions of healthy eating and good nutrition.”

She said her session will interact with event participants to reflect the needs and curiosities of each individual.

“It’s your body, your framework, your history, your heredity,” she said. “I really want to understand where people are coming from, and then help them with education and tools that they can take back to their families and daily life.”

Educate and share

It’s the core messages provided by these experts that will provide long-term lessons, Mark said, since a lot of the teachings seem intuitive, but are not — simply because they were never instilled in individuals.

“After the weekend, you get to take the lessons home,” Mark said. “We don’t just want this to be a three-day summit and then you go back to your life; we want you to integrate and incorporate everything you learn for yourself and your loved ones.”

Even if you have a home here, you can still engage in this opportunity to find ease, expand your knowledge and reconnect. The “Commuter Package” includes all the event’s receptions, seminars, activities, meals and discourses, and is a great way to engage in a world-class event in the comfort of your own community.

“With our relaxing locale along Gore Creek and pristine mountain views, our Vail Living Well Experience guests will reside in the best learning environment possible,” said Patricia McNamara, director of sales and marketing at Sonnenalp. “We take great pride in hosting an event like this and we are eager for all attendees to have the best weekend possible during the ‘Women: Living in Balance’ Sonnenalp signature event.”

Mark said the event focuses on establishing imperative human connections.

“There are amazing things that happen when people get together and share, including reduced blood pressure, decreased cortisol (stress hormone) levels, an increase in endorphins as well as oxytocin, known as the ‘love hormone,’” she said. “Overall, just being with each other is truly important.”

Mark said attendees and presenters can learn from one another and she expects both will come away from the weekend feeling rejuvenated.

“I just want people to come with an open mind and an open heart,” Mark said. “And to not be afraid to share their concerns and personal issues, because I think we are all having them. Everyone is coming from a unique experience, and we can all learn from each other.”

For more information or to reserve a spot for the 2013 Vail Living Well Experience, contact McNamara at the Sonnenalp Hotel at 970-479-5434 or email pmcnamara@sonnenalp.com.

For more information about Vail Living Well and the programs and events that it produces, visit http://www.vail livingwell.org, facebook.com/vail livingwell, or call Vail Living Well’s concierge at 970-343-9918.

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