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Body & Soul Adventures - Not Your Typical Girlfriend Trip

Reader, Krista Blaisdell, shares her story

Dois Rios HikeDois Rios HikeIn an office of brilliant and independent women, 6 days of hiking in the rainforest and kayaking in Brazil appealed only to me - and my best friend and co-worker, Annie.

Working at a public relations firm in Las Vegas, our usual exploits include dark bars, cheap beer and too many cigarettes. However, we were elated to embark on the weeklong Body & Soul Adventures program so we could detox, re-evaluate and get in shape.

Despite our near identical love of new experiences, Body & Soul HikeBody & Soul Hikeforeign places and nature, Body & Soul was vastly different for each of us. She was in far better shape and had even worked out for weeks to prepare for the trip. I decided to wing it. I had to quit smoking cold turkey the day we arrived at the spa because they banned alcohol, tobacco and sugar.

Annie relished the hikes, even doing one in bare feet like our Brazilian guides, while I was a sweating, stumbling mess. I adored the yoga, happily chanting and holding poses, while Annie fell over or fell asleep.

Although we started each day's kayak trip or hike together, Annie eventually outpaced me. In our group Body & Soul HikeBody & Soul Hikeof 10 women, she traveled toward the middle of the pack, while I stayed near the back, both of us finding new friends with similar physical capabilities.

At our destination spot, we met up again and enjoyed our lunches together - tofu and beet sandwiches, fresh pitas with hummus and all sorts of locally grown fruits.

The evenings also gave us a chance to have our usual fun. With no sense of pride, we joined in with a local performance troupe, presenting our best capoeira moves with all the style and rhythm of two white girls from the Midwest.

Even though we weren't side by side throughout the trip like you'd expect for a girlfriend's getaway, we grew stronger and amazed ourselves.

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