Escaping Your Comfort Zone

I’ve always enjoyed being active outdoors and on a recent holiday with my hubby Pete in Ubud, Bali, we took the opportunity to rise bright & early (those that know me well know that I’m not a morning person – so this was commitment!) and head to the starting point in central Ubud of the Campuhan Ridge Walk.  We set off at 7am trying to avoid the heat, unfortunately the day was one of the clearest we’d had so far in this wet season visit to Bali, so the humidity and heat were not kind to us that day.  The trail starts at a beautiful temple and gently winds its way up the ridge between the two ravines and rivers that run through this area.

To say that the scenery is spectacular is an understatement.  The trail goes for approx. 3km before you come to a gorgeous village with art shops along the road.  The road is unpaved but if you keep going about 500m you’ll come to an incredible café, Karsa Kafe with a beautiful lotus pond full of frogs and lovely coffee, juices and snacks.  This is the usual “rest point” for serious hikers, but for us in the extreme heat this was our end point for our hike.

This is how I looked half-way through the hike…. I don’t think I’ve ever sweated so much! It was an exhilarating morning.ResizedJanineCampuhan

On another morning during our holiday, we also awoke early to the roosters crowing and decided to get up and do some photography. A gentle amble down the road through the village from our villa bought us to the top end of the Rice Paddy walkway that runs approx. 6kms to central Ubud through the most beautiful rice paddies, villages and views. That day we walked 13kms in total.  It was bliss, (including the incredible breakfast and views at Sari Organic on the way) and despite how much I despise humidity and being drenched in sweat continuously, I had an incredible time and loved every minute of it.

With the busy life that I lead as a mum, wife and business owner, it’s easy to prioritise things away from my own active enjoyment.  I LOVE my weekly yoga classes with the gorgeous Sarah Harry at Body Positive Australia (I’ve missed 3 weeks in a row due to my trip to Bali and the dengue fever I’m still recovering from since I returned – but that’s another story!), and my family and I regularly enjoy weekend outings walking, photographing our local countryside and being as active as possible.  I have to admit though it’s easy to not step outside of my comfort zone when even if the hectic life I live isn’t enough of an excuse, I find it difficult to schedule activities without having the security of like-minded or like-bodied women around me.  For example, I have never walked into my local gym and just signed-up for a Zumba or Boxing Class – even though these are two things I enjoy and would dearly love to do.  The thought of a room full of not necessarily body positive people puts me off.  My fear of not being able to keep up overwhelms me.  I know how stupid that sounds – and given that I AM body positive and highly confident, I still suffer from these restrictive thoughts. Hence when the opportunity came along for me to attend the Body Positive Yoga Classes I jumped at the chance!  I absolutely LOVE the opportunity to be guided by a teacher who understands that EVERY body is different and EVERY body is capable of different things. Sarah gives alternatives for every pose – oh the freedom of being able to have choice to participate and to enjoy.  Priceless.

This year I wanted to start creating some new habits for myself. My work often means I spend hours in my home office behind the computer and on the phone, often not moving far at all for most of the day, then other days I’m out and about at meetings and showings and I’ll do kms of walking.  The point is, I want to be as active as possible, because when I’m active, I feel better.  I can think straighter and I feel calmer – oh yes, and being an insomniac, I also sleep better too!  So I’ve actively put into place regular yoga classes, bought a walking machine for those days when my work dictates a low-activity day – I can just take my smart phone and walk a few kms in between work, and I’ve been incorporating some outdoor activities with my family.

But I still want more.

Guess you can imagine my excitement when just this week I stumbled across Escaping Your Comfort Zone – THE most exciting idea for plus-size women since, forever!


A community of plus size women with a taste for adventure and exploring the great outdoors.  We want to inspire people. We want someone to look at us and say because of you I didn’t give up.  This is your community to share all the insights and inspiration you need to allow you to be the absolute best version of yourself.

Richelle Olsen

This photo caught my eye because I’m obsessed with clouds.  I have copious amounts of cloud photos, and I’m sure I drive my husband crazy with my constant comments on how amazing that cloud formation is!  Then I was drawn into the vista, then I clicked further into the website and then I read the words on the Facebook event I was looking at … Plus Size Women’s Hiking For Beginners – YES that’s me!!

I want to introduce you to Richelle Olsen.   She’s an Aussie 30-something, plus sized, and she’s cycled 6,500kms from Canada to Mexico, hiked to Everest base camp, run a 25km mountain race in the Spanish Pyrenees, trekked the Inca Trail, scuba dived in oceans and freshwater caves around the world, raced over 20 triathlons, solo hiked the Queen Charlotte Track in NZ and had a whole lot of other adventures in between. I feel tired just listing those incredible achievements!

RichelleOlsenBut Richelle says she’s just an everyday woman, not overly fit, loves the outdoors, and  wants to inspire and support other plus sized girls to experience what she has, without limits.

Richelle says “You don’t need to be fit, you don’t need to “look the part”, it doesn’t matter what size you are, all you need is a sense of adventure, and a willingness to step outside your comfort zone”.

Now that’s a woman after my own heart, and I’m guessing yours too right?
So will you join me at the upcoming event in Melbourne on Saturday 2nd April? Here’s all the details…. I’ll be there and I hope to see you too. It’s going to be fantastic and the start of some very exciting opportunities to escape my own comfort zone.  And it’s FREE!
And if that isn’t enough to get you excited – how about joining me at this one? I will be attending this incredible weekend and am honoured to have been invited to add value with a presentation on Mindset and Curvy Women.  I can’t wait  for the upcoming PLUS SIZE WOMEN’S OUTDOOR RETREAT WEEKEND to be held on the Surf Coast in Victoria.



Stay tuned for some (no doubt hilarious) photos of my first attempt at Stand-up Paddle boarding.  COME AT ME!!!

Whose in?  Join me…

Love your shape!

Janine x

2 thoughts on “Escaping Your Comfort Zone

  1. Fantastic and motivating story. Thank you Janine.. you always makes us feel sooo good! I only wish there were events and communities like this in Brisbane including the Yoga classes….

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