Pura vida, pure life in Spanish, is a mindset, a way of living, a goal, an experience, something to create, something to share. Pura vida came to life for me and my husband on our honeymoon in Costa Rica where we first heard the phrase. Pura vida was a greeting, the answer to “how are you,” a toast, a beginning and an end to each day and we reveled in it. Costa Rica, all the people we met there, the volcano and cloud forest we explored, the hiking we did, the surfing we tried, the nature we immersed ourselves in was all eye opening to what pura vida feels like. All our senses were heightened to the sights, smells, sounds, and lifestyle around us. We tried new things from food to language to exercise, challenged ourselves in our surroundings, and felt rewarded in what we learned and contributed to where we had been. The pura vida mindset that we embraced in Costa Rica is one that we hoped to hold onto back in the “real world.”
The challenge in every day is to find pura vida. It’s not always easy with the realities and responsibilities of everyday life, but recalling the feeling of adventure, exploration, personal challenges, little victories, and a calm awareness of moving forward helps to establish pura vida. You have to decide what moments, feelings, and experiences form your understanding of pura vida as it can be part of your life however you choose. Pursuing a healthy and active lifestyle is a path toward a balanced life that gives you something to focus on, believe in, and reflect on. Zip lining through the Monte Verde cloud forest was an exhilarating experience of being above the tree tops, seeing nature at its best, and being in control of my own momentum, and I carry that feeling with me as I go through the motions of marathon training, writing a blog, or entertaining guests because it reminds me of the refreshing excitement that exists in everything we do if we take the time to recognize it. Harness the energy of the moments in your life that make you feel empowered and pura vida will follow.
Health and running is only a small piece of pura vida. Family, friends, new challenges, rewarding work experiences, refreshing moments outdoors, and time to enjoy life’s simple pleasures are all pura vida for me. What will be yours? Perhaps the beginning of your pura vida will also be health and running, or biking, or swimming, or climbing, walking, gardening, cooking, or any combination of these or other lifestyle choices that you embrace with purpose.
I’ll share my experiences, good and bad, of my health and running path, and look forward to getting to know you along the way.