Tag Archives: lifestyle

The Leap of Faith – Gratitude and Becoming a Lifestyle Entrepreneur

Gratitude Carina Míguez, First Lady of Hiking Yoga on gratitude and taking the leap of faith that fills her heart with gratitude everyday…

I never in a million years envisioned myself as a Lifestyle Entrepreneur!

I followed the traditional route of attending college, studying something marketable and working in a corporate environment building my career. Even as a child I was drawn to math and science, and being fluent in two languages I set a goal for a “portable” degree that I could transfer to any situation/geographical location.  My decided path was to go for an Engineering degree.  I obtained a degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering and discovered I had a real passion for how things are produced in mass… how systems work… and I wanted to make the processes better by eliminating waste and being more efficient.

My path was no different than many others who chose to make a career in engineering.  I worked at Intel making chips for over 10 years.  I learned a ton and benefitted from working alongside an amazing group of highly focused and talented people.  Yet over time, I felt something was missing.  I wanted to infuse more creativity into my professional life.  I craved more flexibility and control over my time.  I was not feeling as fulfilled by my career and the direction it was taking me in.  I was missing my family and I wanted to be able to spend more time with them–not just 2 out of 52 weeks a year!

So I took the leap of faith!

I quit my job and decided to make a change to pursue other interests.  

It was a bold move at the time, especially when I was not quite sure of exactly what I was going to do or how.  To make matters more complicated, the whole world economy quickly had gone to the waste-basket!  We were in the middle of a world recession in 2008-9 when I was trying to make these changes in my life.

ImageIt was around that time that I met Eric.  He was fun, energetic and had an approach to life that inspired me.  Why couldn’t life be ALL that I wanted it to be?  Life is abundant and it conspires to give us as much as we put into it.  This is why I was drawn to Hiking Yoga, supporting Eric’s vision of “getting more people into their bodies” and “building the life he loved”, on his terms.  I could get behind that idea and I tasted those words in my tongue: building the life that I loved… It sounded and still sounds fabulous!

Eventually this idea morphed into an even bigger and more compelling one: “building the life we loved” and we became lifestyle entrepreneurs.  We joined our toothbrushes and moved into a small and very expensive one bedroom apartment in San Francisco.  I was working for Google at the time and within less than a year, we both decided to devote all our time and energy into growing our vision!  Much has changed since then and we have adapted to many “wrenches” thrown our way.  We now live in Kansas City, MO with our beautiful children and we hope to teach them about lifestyle entrepreneurship and what it can do for them.

I feel blessed to have had the courage and faith to make changes in my life that I, like many, find terribly frightening.

I want to inspire others to make those changes.  I think Hiking Yoga Training is an amazing avenue to get people in the world of yoga and fitness to building the life they love–whatever it means for each and every one of them.  Embracing change, believing in one’s power, getting into one’s body and building the life one loves is what Hiking Yoga Training brings to people and I am grateful to share that vision with you.

“Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” –Melody Beattie

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Refine Your Niche – Become the Yoga Entrepreneur

Imagine the excitement in sharing your work at an international venue like the Yoga Journal Conferences! Many of the most recognizable teachers in the world participate. The level of energy the teachers and students bring ignites the training and reconnects us with our passion for yoga. In sharing the joy of Hiking Yoga on all different levels, I wanted to help so many of the yoga teachers that have their own amazing niche, but expressed a need for a map to refine it and become the Yoga Entrepreneur they envision!  Hiking Yoga has a unique niche and as a family business, we put our hearts into it as Lifestyle Entrepreneurs. We celebrate being present outdoors by encouraging others to take their practice to a multidimensional level. These building blocks are the stairs that lead us to the Yoga Journal Conferences year after year.

This time around I am leading Yoga Hikes on the beach in Miami at the prestigious Westin Diplomat  with its swanky palm trees and fabulous pools adjacent to the beach.

As I arrive with my family, I have only one day to design a course that integrates the best of the resort, ocean views and all other images people may have of bliss filled yoga on the beach. It is exhilarating and challenging to show off the best aspects of new locations on the fly. I am a map nerd and love studying the possibilities to deliver the most exhilarating experience.

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It can be intimidating making your offering next to some of the top teachers in the world. Yoga lovers pay for entrance to the conference and can pick from whomever sounds most appealing. We initially offered two 2-hour Yoga Hikes per day and to our delight they sold out right away!

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Why is it that I have much less name recognition than some of these renown yoga teachers but still have a rush of yogis signing up to participate in a Yoga Hike?

It is the power of offering something compelling and unique that makes all the difference.  

This represents the heart of finding your niche and offering your best work whatever that may be. I feel so blessed to have found mine and have created an opportunity to share that experience with you. Through Hiking Yoga Training I want to teach you to grow your niche so one day you too will work with some of the most exciting teachers and have your offering be recognized in conferences around the world!

To the students at the conference, Hiking Yoga offers an eye opening and gratifying yoga practice. We will hike and enjoy the quintessential thrills of Florida and practice yoga in nature with the waves flowing in harmony with the breathe.

Leading Yoga Hikes around the world in unique and breathtaking landscapes inspired me to share my established brand with others. I know the hard work and passion it takes to bring a niche to life. I want to share my unique offering by combining your passion and working together to refine your niche to help YOU thrive as a Yoga Entrepreneur for a lifetime!

Lifestyle Design & Your Vision of the Ideal Yoga Life

hyt blog 4The term “Lifestyle Design” was made famous by Tim Ferris in his book The 4-Hour Workweek where he conjures all sorts of images of twenty-something’s running with the bulls in Pamplona, spearfishing in the south pacific, or sipping cocktails at a beach in the Caribbean. Even while nursing a shoulder injury from repeatedly patting himself on the back, the money rolls in by the thousand’s every week. The underlying sentiment is that you were not smart enough to figure out how to escape hustling away at a 9-5 job or series of side gigs trying to keep your vision alive.  Pay him and he may give you a glimpse of what skills & ideas you are missing to achieve that vision.

hyt blog 5The yoga version of this ideal would be floating around the globe from conference to workshop to retreat on your whim with crowds of adoring students waiting for you. Some hybrid of Seane Corn, Shiva Rea, & Rodney Yee. You have videos selling around the clock online, you grace the cover of Yoga Journal occasionally, your DVD’s fill entertainment centers everywhere, and you have your own line of yoga pants. Money has not gotten in the way of your true teaching because you found the secret and operate on another plane free of worldly concerns. You have struck a perfect balance of your physical practice, service to community, and non-stop bliss in the world you have created.

hyt blogThe reality for most is that you have to hustle to make a living (even partial) from teaching yoga. You teach regularly in 3 studios and are on the sub list for a few more. You have a good group of steady students on your Saturday morning and Tuesday night classes.  You just passed 1,500 likes on Facebook. You blog and seem to have a nice following. You make 50% of your modest, monthly income in the yoga realm but you still have to hustle a second job (wait tables, nanny or help manage a yoga studio…). You have tightened your belt and learned to live with less.

What if you could make your reality closer to that ideal and make incremental hyt blog 2movements towards a vision of a life you love?  That was what motivated me when I started pouring myself wholeheartedly into Hiking Yoga.  Unlike Tim, I can’t say that I work a 4-hour work week, but then again, since I love what I do I am not counting the hours.  My focus is not to get rich, but to live richly.  I spend time with my family that I love and I get people in their bodies outdoors doing yoga.  I love how stoked people are after a yoga hike and how they gush from the experience.

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Over time I trained hundreds of teachers to lead yoga hikes for my company.  I noticed that many teachers even with their 200 to 500 hour training, struggled to reach their goals.  There is very little guidance out there for yoga teachers in the realm of business ownership and marketing.  That is what inspired me to create Hiking Yoga Training.  I found balance within my entrepreneurial dream, my yoga practice and my family.  I want to share that experience because I believe that we all can live a fulfilled life and still stay true to our dreams. You can live the life that you love!

Family, Growth and Embracing Life’s Blessings

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Carina Míguez, First Lady of Hiking Yoga, on family, growth & embracing life’s blessings…

Eric and I have a wonderful family and we love love love spending time together.  In fact, most people are surprised at the amount of time we spend together period.  We have been married for a relatively short amount of time. We have been partners in a business since only a bit longer.  For some time now, we work from home on our business, share almost every meal, go on daily walks together without seeming to get tired of each other’s presence–quite the opposite.

Our walks now include two little ones… Our oldest, 2 year old daughter Quincy, is such a joyful and graceful little person.  She has been a model for me from the very start.  She has taught me about grace, strength and courage.  Since before I actually felt her kicking in my tummy, I knew I had an incredible being inside and I was excited to welcome her into our world.  Relatively early on in the pregnancy, around week 17, we learned that she had a congenital defect that would require her to be in the hospital for some time after she was born.  Doctors would not give us an estimate because each case was so different and they warned us that although mortality was generally not a concern, the road to health would be a rocky one.

photo (1)It certainly was.  Within the first weeks after birth Quincy underwent 4 surgeries and she spent almost 3 months in the neonatal intensive care unit in northern CA.  It was a difficult time for us all and today, we are so blessed to see her completely recovered thanks to many people who touched our lives.  Those not so distant memories of hospital visits (the smells, the sounds), of worries and of celebration of small triumphs (i.e the first time I was able to hold her in my arms, the first time we took her outside hooked up to all her tubes) seem foreign and almost unreal when contrasted with the joy of witnessing her little wonderful self blossom every single day.

So, when we learned that we were pregnant again with our youngest Joaquín, now almost 6 months old, we were ready to experience a “normal” pregnancy–devoid of worry and extra monitoring.  I did the regular tests most of us pregnant women over the age of 35 do and was told “there is nothing to worry about”.  Eric and I embraced the news and proceeded to do just that… not worry. Actually, we were more than worry free. We focused on planning for the arrival of Joaquín and enjoyed every minute of the ride!

Joaquín Felix arrived one morning in April this year, a couple of weeks earlier than anticipated after almost 18hrs of “labour”.  My parents, who had traveled from Uruguay especially for the happy occasion, almost missed the whole event but fortunately made it just in time heading from the airport straight to the hospital.

If Quincy taught me a thing or two about grace, strength and courage, Joaquín is teaching me about joy and love.  His smile is truly a force to be reckoned with.  It takes over his whole body.  When he smiles, he raises his little shoulders up to his ears, reaches down with his hands outstretched towards his feet and lifts his knees up with heels clicking below.  He is truly “a happy dude”!

JoaquinTurns out that Joaquín did come with a little extra.

Shortly after birth, we found out Joaquín had several markers for Down Syndrome. This was later confirmed by a blood test. We were relieved to hear from the cardiologist that his heart was sound and required no special procedures as 60% of kids with Down Syndrome require open heart surgery in the 1st year of life.  We have much to learn and, fortunately, great support in family and friends and the Down Syndrome Guild of Kansas City.

A poem we read from a parent described the situation best for us.  She compared the hopes for the pregnancy to planning a trip to Italy. For 9 months she read the guidebooks, imagined the taste of the delicious Italian food, pictured herself riding on the gondolas in Venice, walking through the streets of Florence and visiting the sites in Rome.  Then she got on the plane and arrived to destination. Only that, when she landed she was welcomed to Holland–not Italy.  “What?! Holland? But I wanted to go to Italy!” she said.  She had a choice to make: be upset about not being in Italy, or embrace the fact that she was in Holland.

Well, we have been learning much of the tulips, wind mills and Van Gogh masterpieces. There are many amazing things about Holland that we are just beginning to discover. October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month and on Saturday October 26th our little Hiking Yoga family will be “Walkin’ with Joaquín” (our team) for the Step Up for Down Syndrome Walk in Kansas City.  We hope you can join us in person or in spirit and look forward to you visiting Holland with us soon!

With Love,

E+C=Q+J

Eric + Carina = Quincy + Joaquín

Namaste – My soul recognizes your soul. I honor the love, light, beauty, truth and kindness within you because it is also within me. In sharing these things there is no distance between us. We are the same. We are one.

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This picture of Quincy and Joaquín is very telling about their relationship.  From the beginning, and to this day, Quincy will often kiss Joaquín’s feet.  She will greet him regularly with such love and tenderness that I am constantly reminded of how fortunate we are in having these two lovely souls grace our family lives with their presence.

Hiking Yoga – Family Owned – Lifestyle Entrepreneurs

hy Eric n CarinaThere is something unique about a Yoga Hike that goes beyond the amazing experience of taking a hike in your city and delving into yoga stops along the way.  There is a sense of friendship that develops with your instructor and fellow Yoga Hikers.  This feeling is not accidental, it starts from the top.  The Founder of Hiking Yoga, Eric Kipp, leads regular Yoga Hikes in his community and around the country.  Eric and his wife Carina are on the other end of your phone calls, emails, coaching ventures and social media interactions.  As daunting of a task as this may seem, since Hiking Yoga is growing so rapidly, Eric and Carina are also joyously in the whirlwind of diaper changing and approval filled kisses landing upon their two children’s foreheads all while taking care of their daily business adventures.

So you may be thinking, “How do they do it?”

Having a compelling vision is key.  Eric and Carina’s “work-life” balance comes from a strong belief in being lifestyle entrepreneurs.  This means having the end in mind of the life they want to live and creating a business that supports that vision. The more common approach to owning a business involves creating a business and letting life be what is left behind… the left-over scraps, if you will, that are gathered after the business is established.

Eric and Carina share a powerful vision of getting people to be in the moment in their bodies… getting them to explore their communities, their relationship with nature and the role yoga plays in their lives.  This vision is shared first with each other and then with teachers and partners who in turn share it with yoga hikers around the world… bringing Hiking Yoga to more communities.

Family and friends are such a big part of Hiking Yoga that Eric, Carina and their children live seasonally in Uruguay, Missouri and California in order to share their time with the people that they love the most.  So although you may never meet the family behind Hiking Yoga, their openness to teach and lead comes from the heart and from their goals being in line with YOUR friends and family experiencing all that a Yoga Hike has to offer.

Family – Friendships – Nature – Community – Yoga – Fresh Air and Peace of Mind

Hiking Yoga cares about the health and wellness movement and it shows in every Yoga Hike.  A compelling vision is why a family owned business like Hiking Yoga will continue to grow within our cities and within our hearts.  We hope you will join in the greater Hiking Yoga family!