A typical day for Mary Tilson
Director of Yoga and Wellness at Indonesia’s Nihi Sumba
, is what the rest of us would consider sublime paradise. Here, she shares her
favorite healthy snacks and self-care rituals.
My path to yoga…
The seed was first planted growing up, watching my mom do her practice.
I had already visited Bali — a close neighbor — several
times, but Sumba, often referred to as the “forgotten island,” was completely off the
then. I was intrigued by the tribal culture, the raw, rugged landscapes and the resort
focus on philanthropy.
Anjaneyasana, also known as kneeling lunge. It’s a great hip and heart
opener that acts as the perfect counterbalance to time spent sitting down.
I power through the sweating, twisting and turning because…
It powers me. Yoga has a beautiful way of waking us up to the present
Favorite healthy meal…
Tropical fruit, chia seed pudding and muesli is my favorite breakfast. I
also love coconut-based vegetable curries.
Favorite healthy eats when on the go…
Apples with nut butter! I also carry dried fruit and nut mixes with me
for long treks or
travel days when you can’t always rely on what food will be available. On my most recent trip to
Peru, puffed quinoa —
sometimes dusted with cacao powder — was the best fuel while exploring the Sacred Valley.
My self-care philosophy…
Listen to your body.
And self-care rituals…
I always have a sacred space set up with calming essential oils, incense,
special treasures from my travels, inspiring books and my yoga mat. It keeps me grounded despite a
lifestyle of continuous travel and change. I’ve also started disconnecting completely before bed
early in the morning — swapping in good, old-fashioned books for electronics.
You’d be surprised to know…
I spent a year living in a grass hut at a yoga and meditation retreat
in the jungle in Cambodia, surrounded by traditional farming villages and the ancient ruins of
Although the very simplistic way of life was quite an adjustment —
no Wi-Fi or AC and only cold-water showers — those were some of the best times of my life.