"Inspiring intentions, fueling goals, and embracing present moments"
W: I’m really excited to chat with you today and learn a little bit more about you. I’ve taken a handful of yoga classes from you; I love what you’re doing here and really want to support you…
W: I think it’s super important that as people we identify what brings us joy. What gets us really excited about our day, our week, whatever it may be. What is something you make sure to pencil into your schedule that is going to bring you joy?
V: I just have to touch the ocean… a lot of people in Maui, that’s gonna be their answer. We’ve been in quarantine for almost a year, Josh and I have logged over 300 ocean sessions since everything shut down. So at least once a day, sometimes three times a day I’m in the ocean. Very rarely is my hair dry, hahaha
But if I go into the ocean in the morning… I feel like whatever comes the rest of the day I’m cruise-y, I don’t get anxious. That’s probably the number one thing that brings me joy!
My other thing is snacks! If you open my pantry there’s boxes of cliff bars, quest bars, peanut butter, and almond butter. And if I don’t have snacks stocked that brings me non-joy, I get hangry. So, ocean and snacks haha. I wish I could say world peace but those are the two things that make me really happy!
W: The ocean and snacks! I agree, both of those things bring me joy too…
W: On your days off, when you’re not being a yoga instructor. When you’re not running around the island doing all your awesome projects, where could we expect to find you?
V: Being a small business owner, there are no days off. I opened my business on January 1st, 2020 (pre-COVID). I had purchased my insurance, my permits, all the things that I needed. I didn’t want that to go to waste, so I’ve been working in my own way ever since. Through social media, writing blog posts, YouTube. Every day my mind is on, because I’ve wanted this since I was 17.
Right before I went to college, I knew I wanted to open my own recreation business. So, when I finally decided to do it, I was 100% invested. I don’t sit still very often so the only time you’ll find me at the house is after dark. I like to craft, I like to sew, make jewelry, paint, and draw. On my days off I like to work on little projects!
Otherwise, all things that I do in my life for fun is also my job.
W: I’d love to know; in your opinion, how do you support your community?
V: The first thing that comes to mind is the kids in the ocean. I call them the harbor kids - I love their passion. I spent a lot of last summer and this summer out in Lahaina Harbor. The parents drop off the kids and hang out in the grass while they’re out there.
There’s this young surfer girl, her name is Juliana Colpas. She’s shredding, at the age of twelve… She’s Pakaloha’s youngest ambassador, and she wants to be a pro surfer! She’s all about it, reading the tides, showing up. Her and I, and her little sister have been doing workouts together at airport beach. I’m showing them what I do when I surf, answering their questions and talking story.
Also joining canoe club, Josh & I both are in Napili Canoe Club. When I first moved here, that was like my third day here I went to canoe club practice. But there’s a lot of culture and community, and you cheer each other on. Not just Napili but Kahana, Wailea, everybody is there together supporting each other. Supporting the club, the kids out on the ocean.
I feel like I can be a resource for my friends, because they know I’m very active. If I ever get a text “you want to go for a bike ride?” or “surf?” it’s always a YES from me. Because I know for me, that active lifestyle and activities is how I escape stress, sadness, or whatever. So, when somebody is asking to do something active, I very rarely say no. Always reaching out to people to include them in activities or being a person that encourages them to try something new.
W: Another part of this project that is incredibly important to me is talking about how our actions impact our environment. Living (in Maui) brings this to light, because you can literally see trash floating in the ocean, sift through the sand, and see the impact that we have on the environment. So, something I’m asking all of the wahine in my project is – what kind of actions do you take towards protecting our environment?
V: First thing that comes to my head is, how stoked I am about a bike that Josh got me not too long ago. One simple thing I’ve been doing is biking down (to s-turns) to go surfing. Being able to walk outside, get on my bike, no technology or car. No stress about where to go, I strap my board in its bag across my back. I save gas, I save the stress of driving and finding a parking spot.
In my yoga classes, instead of using wet wipes, I use washcloths or rags instead. By the end of the week, I’m teaching almost 100 yoga students, so I’ve made a point to use reusable materials instead of single-use wipes.
I also use reef-safe sunscreen every time I go surfing. I usually use Lahaina Organics sunscreen, since I’m friends with the family that makes it! Josh and I don’t really eat out at restaurants, but if we do go, we try to bring our own to-go containers. I use a re-usable water bottle that I take with me everywhere.
W: What is your favorite part of westside Maui?
V: Westside is like a magical wonderland… From Ukumehame, the tip of the westside where I work for Maui Surfer Girls (use Victoria10 for a discount). This side doesn’t have much shopping, or artsy culture… but we have the surf, fitness, and activities. It just feels like a little bubble of fun, because that’s all the things that I love.
The thing that I love the most, without having my family here… I feel safe all the time, everywhere I go. When I go surf at S-turns I can set my bike and beach bag down, see half my friends there, and know that people will be looking out for my stuff. The family vibe, if I needed something from somebody on my street or the block over… it seems that everyone on the westside really looks out for one another. If you lock your keys in your car, or you need a ride to the airport… unless they’re working or busy, they’re gonna come help you out.
W: What sort of advice would you give your younger self?
V: **runs away and comes back holding a tea towel that reads** "My mother was right about everything…"
Your mom or dad, whoever is raising you… they KNOW. Being open to advice or being open to people that are helping you steer your way. Not being stubborn, thinking you don’t need to do this, or that… to not fight the things you’ve been told multiple times. Because it must be something important. So get in that routine after school, start eating healthy earlier than later… Listening to your elders, not trying to fight back… just absorbing the knowledge.
My mom, dad, and brothers all taught me a lot of things along the way. My brothers were a big influence in my active lifestyle of swimming, fishing, hunting, and diving, growing up having to keep up with them.
I think if people are willing to show you things, or invite you to things, just go for it. So, if I were to tell my younger self, listen to your mom. Listen to those who are trying to help you, don’t fight the advice, or the tips. If someone invites you to try something new, whether or not you’re sure if you’re going like it, it’s always good to try. When I got invited to go out waterskiing, I went out and tried it. Then I got invited to go wakeboarding, then I was invited to go surfing. Then I LOVED it, and I moved to Hawai’i, and I surf every day. So, the things I may have said no to, because I was shy could have stopped me from discovering these amazing hobbies.
W: How can our community help support your business?
V: My ideal goal for In House Retreats is to be an on-site wellness business. I come to your property, resort, or place of business and bring in a wellness activity. Whether it’s meditation, yoga class, intention or goal setting workshops, etc.
I really want people to know that I’m here as a resource for companies opening back up. Maybe their employees are anxious about germs, covid, and how it is to get back to work after being gone for a while. I come in and do a team building activity, talk about how to set a daily intention, you can connect with your coworkers. Create a space that feels like a retreat for you, relaxing, a place you’d like to go to. A retreat is a positive, happy place of escape. I don’t want anybody in the world to ever feel like they’re locked to their job, and they can’t feel at ease with whatever they’re doing. For a cost that simply covers my expenses and a little bit of my energy, and I’m always going to give you more.
So, if you’re a business owner or you have a small group of employees, just ask what I can do for your team. Allow my mind to be creative and come up with something for you. The way the community can help me is by spreading the word, check out my website, it has everything that I can offer your team. I have over ten years of experience teaching yoga, group fitness, managing a team, and knowing how to keep team morale high and mental health.
Apart from that I also teach outdoor group classes, outdoor yoga, you can come participate in those classes. They’re held at resorts, but everyone is welcome to come and drop in! Telling tourists, or your friends when they’re on island that you know someone that teaches yoga.
I have a yoga Youtube channel as well! I would love some more followers on there too. They’re all free and you can access them from anywhere in the world. They take a lot of work, and I’m really proud of the videos that I put out there. There are over 50 videos on there, all about 15 minutes. Whether you’re looking for stretching, surf yoga, yoga for your back, etc. Sharing my videos or following along with your friends would make me so happy.
Youtube: In House Retreats Yoga
Maui Surfer Girls: use code Victoria10 for a discount
Pakaloha Bikinis: use code lilripper10 for a discount