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GirlTrek Labor Day Stress Protest, A Weekend of awakening and pride

Posted September 4, 2018
By Rochele Jones
"And he's allowed me to go to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the promised land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land."

-Martin Luther King Jr



This Labor Day weekend I experienced the best self-care celebration in my life. I had the pleasure to attend in my life. I had the pleasure of attending GirlTrek's 2nd Annual Stress Protest. What is Stress Protest?  Self- Care is a  revolutionary act. - GirlTrek

GirlTrek is the largest Black women's fitness movement in the country. Black women joined together from all different walks of the earth for self-care. I currently organized a GirlTrek group in Pasadena, CA called the TrekTrailblazers. I was joined during this incredible weekend by a dedicated  Trailblazer, Dianne Taylor. We knew that we could use a weekend catered to us. From the moment we entered the airport in Denver, Colorado, we were surrounded by a sea of blue, which is the color of GirlTrek. We were family, and if you had on superhero blue, we were automatically connected at the heart.

Once we arrived at the YMCA of the Rocky Mountains, the site was full of sisters in blue and it looked electrical. If I was asked to define Black Girl Magic, I would have described this event.

On Friday, we were received with a welcome Rally hosted by our beautiful founders, Morgan Dixion, Vanessa Garrison and Mistress of Ceremonies, Tiff McFierce. We got to meet our fellow trekkers and our #StressProtest Dream Team. That was definitely the way to get the party started.

Saturday morning we got up early to get breakfast and tackle our schedules. We started out with a Tribe Circle. The morning circle gathered all the trekker's hand by hand to set the tone of our day and to remind us why we were all there. Trekkers had the opportunity to join classes such as Soul Drumming Full Body Work, Awaken Your Sensuality using the Ancient Secrets of African Goddess Oshun, Tribe Circle: Rhythm Therapy, Glory: The Power of Prayer & Praise, Emerald Lake Intermediate Climb/ Hike, Self Defense, Double Dutch Aerobics, Yoga, Reiki Session, Massage Therapy, Mental Wellness check-in, Cranes in the Sky, Salutations and Stretches, African Dance workout and so much more. It is safe to say that Black women were living their best lives.

Our last night together was remarkable and bittersweet. We did a group photo and the Ciara #levelupchallenge (she reposted our video). We had an award ceremony, and a campfire enjoying smores and wine. I remember hearing Morgan's voice echoing over the fire and fresh air. She literally moved all of our mountains by giving us an encouraging word about using the words creative and courageous. She boldly spoke to our mountains from the north, south, east and west and they listened. Under her direction, we turned to one of our sisters and joined hands. We spoke life to one another while looking in each other's eyes. We whispered one thing we would take with us and leave on the mountaintop. We threw rocks to represent what would stay.

We ended our evening with a closing party that was super LIT. I'm convinced that was Girltrek's way of having us burn off the smores and wine before bed. The Stress Protest was a genius event and I'm so glad Black women have a place to go WOOSAH, love one another and relieve stress.

Thank you Girltrek staff and volunteers for creating such an amazing time on the mountaintop. I loved every bit of it and I can't wait until next year. 

For more info please go to www.girltrek.org

until next time,

Rochele