Buttoned-up engineering, unbuttoned.
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She competes in international triathlons for
fun. Her regular exercise includes an early morning run alongside her
two Arabian horses. Her career takes her from the mountains of Tuscany to the waters
of New Zealand ...
Drive had the opportunity to catch up with Cannon and learn what hundreds of women are finding out about themselves after participating in the extraordinary experiences provided by Womens Quest. Sponsored by Subaru of America, Inc., Womens Quest Fitness Retreats are unique physical and spirit-filled activities and challenging outdoor adventures for women of all athletic abilities. The retreats are usually a week long with small groups of women who take time out from their everyday lives to enjoy hiking, biking, yoga, guided meditation, journaling, wellness lectures and spending time in the company of other women of like mind.
Even with all her accomplishments, Cannon is unassuming, fun loving and down-to-earth. Spend five minutes with her and youll agree ... the only difference youll notice is that after listening to the enthusiasm in her voice, you may suddenly feel more inspired and alive. Cannon asks first time participants, or Questers as she calls them, a question by poet Mary Oliver, What do you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
The retreats help encourage personal awareness, self-expression and a healthy lifestyle. Women who attend the retreats discover how to tap into their own source of strength and become their own lifelong coaches and motivators. We are definitely not about being hardcore. We dont set impractical goals, says Cannon. This softer, more intellectual approach to health and fitness achieves stunning results because Cannon believes that when people feel good about what theyre doing, theyll continue. Questers learn how coming out to play on the retreats teaches them to take risks and build self-confidence.
According to Cannon, When you learn to take risks, you learn how to set goals. Sometimes youre afraid, but its an exhilaration you feel and that you can ultimately tap back into. So just how does going on a weeklong trip of mountain biking, hiking, swimming and learning about the benefits of aromatherapy help women achieve their goals? Cannon says the retreats are playtime with a purpose. Once people free themselves from stress, they are better able to begin to see what they really want, and how to create it. Physical activity is one of the most powerful, yet under-utilized tools for personal development, balance and creativity, says Cannon.
For more information about Womens Quest Fitness Retreats, visit www.womensquest.com or write to Womens Quest, Inc., at 2525 Arapahoe Avenue, Suite E4-181, Boulder, Colo. 80302, or call (303) 545-9295.
Colleen Cannon, founder of Womens Quest Fitness Retreats, has helped to raise the stature of womens sports and make the triathlon an Olympic sport.