The 2020 Beginner's Mind Professional Retreat

Two Weeks of Science, Lifting, Learning, Mindfulness, Nutrition, and Movement in the Costa Rican Jungle.

The 2020 Beginner’s Mind professional retreat will go from March 5th until March 19th. There will be five days of Functional Medicine/Nutrition followed by a three day break, and then five days focused on everything S&C.Each Keynote speaker will present for two to three hours AND each attendee will be required to present on a topic of their choice for 20 to 25 minutes OR write a referenced 10 page research paper. A professional videographer will be on site to record all presentations and your content will be yours do with as you please…and if your presentation is really really good I may attempt to buy the rights to it from you for the mentorship.

This retreat is not about downloading more information it is about cultivating the process to find your own answers and then discuss and bond over the nuances of this field that we all care about so deeply.

Given attendees will be presenting spots are inherently limited (21 to 24 attendee spots each week). Soooo don’t wait.

In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.”

– Shunryu Suzuki


Functional Medicine and Nutrition Week with Dr. Ben House, Dr. Tommy Wood, Dr. Mike T Nelson, Ryan L’Ecuyer, and YOU!

  • March 5th – Afternoon Arrival into SJO through March 11th – Morning Departure from Uvita

Jungle Break

  • March 11th through the 13th

S&C Week with Dr. Ben House, Dr. Mike T Nelson, Dr. Eric Helms, Ryan L’Ecuyer, and YOU!

  • March 13th – Afternoon Arrival into SJO through March 19th- Morning Departure from Uvita

**Check OUT is at 11am on March 11th and 19th.


Flō Retreat Center which sits about three kilometers up the mountains above Uvita, Costa Rica

Flō houses a fully equipped gym with squat racks that stare out into the jungle, a full commercial kitchen, a classroom, as well as accommodations for 20 attendees with expansive views of the Rio Uvita Valley and the Whale’s Tail. Flō sits on 20 acres of pristine rain forest bordered by rivers and six waterfalls on three sides with trails running down to a natural Olympic size pool and a 50 foot waterfall below.

For more information on regarding every pertaining to Flō click HERE.


There will be limited attendee spots available for each of these retreats. Accommodations will all be shared rooms (between 2 to 6 people per room). We will live, eat, learn, and train together.

If you want to come as a couple, the entrance fees will be the same for each person, as we only have so much space on site, but please email me before purchasing, as we only have five private rooms available, and they will not last long.


Each retreat is $1850 and the combined price is $3,450

Also, if you come to both events, you stay and eat for free during the three day break!

Early Bird Price until 10/31:

Each retreat is $1650 and the combined two week price is $3,000. LOCURA!









Registration Includes:

  • Entry into all speaking sessions.
  • An Additional One Year Access to the Beginner’s Mind Mentorship after the event’s completion (3/19/2020-3/21/2021)
  • Lodging
  • Onsite local organic breakfast, lunch, and dinner (there will be a few unstructured lunch or dinners where attendees can go out to eat in smaller groups off site).
  • Coffee, tea, and meditation each morning.

Registration Does Not Include:

  • Airfare to and from Costa Rica – estimate $400-$700 depending on what airport you fly from.
  • Transportation from SJO to and from Uvita. – estimate $55 dollars each way
  • A personal rental car – you may elect to rent a vehicle but it will not be necessary – if you do make sure it is a 4x4.
  • Any fees related to excursions and transportation to excursions.
  • Snacks – if you are snacker bring your go-tos from the States. Only main meals will be provided.


In order to attend either of these retreats you must be currently enrolled in the Beginner’s Mind Mentorship course and this content must be completed prior to March 7th (if you are not Alumni you will need to purchase access to this course).

Application Policy:

In order to attend either of these retreats you must submit an application with the subject line 2020 Costa Rica Retreat Application to [email protected] with the following info:

  • Why you want to attend this event?
  • What are you looking to take back with you from this experience?
  • What scares you most about submitting this application?
  • Where have you traveled inside and outside the United States?
  • What kind of ancestor will you be?

Refund and Exchange Policy:

  • A 50% refund may be issued up to 90 days before the retreat.
  • An exchange to another attendee may be made up to 90 days from the retreat.
  • After 90 days, no exchanges or refunds are possible.






Eric is a coach, athlete, author, and educator. A trainer since the early 2000’s, he’s worked in the US Air force, commercial gyms, private training studios, medical fitness and strength and conditioning facilities. As a part of 3DMJ he coaches drug free strength and physique competitors at all levels. Eric has competed since the mid 2000’s in natural bodybuilding, unequipped powerlifting and dabbled in Olympic lifting. He earned pro status as a natural bodybuilder with the PNBA in 2011 and competes with the IPF at international level events as an unequipped powerlifter.

Eric has published multiple peer reviewed articles in exercise science and nutrition journals and writes for commercial fitness publications. He’s taught undergraduate and graduate level nutrition and exercise science and speaks internationally at academic and commercial conferences for fitness, nutrition and strength and conditioning. He has a BS in fitness and wellness, an MS in exercise science, a second masters in sports nutrition, a PhD in strength and conditioning, and is a research fellow for AUT at the Sports Performance Research Institute New Zealand.

Tommy Wood MD, PhD is an elite-level professional nerd who has coached world class athletes in a dozen sports.  He has an undergraduate degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a medical degree from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo. Tommy is a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Washington, a Research Scientist at the Institute for Human and Machine cognition, and is on the scientific advisory board of Hintsa Performance. He is also CSO (Chief Snake Officer) at the Costa Rican Center for Bro Research. Tommy lives in Seattle with his wife Elizabeth and their two goofy boxers. In his spare time he can usually be found cooking, reading, or lifting something heavy.

Mike T. Nelson, PhD, MSME, CSCS, CISSN, is a research fanatic who specializes in metabolic flexibility, heart rate variability, and human performance.  He has a PhD in Exercise Physiology, and a MS in Mechanical Engineering (biomechanics).  He’s a faculty member at the Carrick Institute of Functional Neurology, university instructor at Rocky Mountain, creator of the Flex Diet Certification, and has published research in both physiology and engineering journals.  He’s even been called in to share his techniques with top military agencies.  In his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife, lifting odd objects, getting lost in pits at metal concerts, and attempting to fly kiteboarding

Dr. Ben House has worked as a Strength and Conditioning Coach and Nutritionist since 2006. House was accepted to medical school without an undergraduate degree, but elected to finish his degree and pursue a career in the health and fitness sector. He is currently lifting and practicing functional medicine after finishing his PhD and a multi-year metabolic health study within the Nutritional Sciences Department at UT-Austin. House has numerous publications in peer reviewed scientific journals such as The International Journal of Obesity, has presented his work at multiple international conferences, and his passion is researching, writing, and teaching. House puts out at least 300-500 pages of short, medium, and long free content per year and now lives in Costa Rica with his wife Steph and their puppies living the principles he asks others to build into their lives.