Life Without Ed® Transform Your Relationship with Food and Your Body

Life Without Ed®: Transform Your Relationship with Food and Your Body

Developed in collabation with Jenni Schaefer, Senior Fellow of the Meadows, and author of the breakthrough bestseller, Life Without Ed

Who am I without Ed (aka "eating disorder")?

Will my body always be a battleground?

How can I find long-term balance with food and exercise in an eating disordered culture?

Will life transition inevitably shake my recovery?

Will I ever be happy?

The new Life without Ed® weekend workshop will dive into all of this and more. This workshop brings the book to life, and, more importantly, helps you to move beyond problems with eating and body image and to jump into your own life.

Co-facilitated by Jenni herself and Rio Retreat therapist Shaul Austin, M.Ed, LPC, CSAT, this weekend will provide wisdom and practical tools to transform that oh so complicated relationship with food and body. Maybe you have already done a lot of hard work in eating disorder treatment, are no longer engaging in destructive behaviors, and fi nd yourself asking, now, what?! Or, maybe you have struggled with emotional eating for years—numbing your feelings with food and disliking your body—and never had the real chance to focus on healing.

Life Without Ed® is the chance to get the help that’s been missing and that you deserve. Additional topics to be explored include:

  • Body acceptance—and even love—in a world that doesn’t accept our bodies
  • Repurposing underlying traits like anxiety and perfectionism toward life goals
  • What to do if you can’t fully let go of disordered eating
  • What to do if, when you do let go of Ed, other self-defeating behaviors emerge, including alcohol and substance abuse
  • Relationships and intimacy: building a village and creating boundaries
  • Feelings and the fear of feelings, like guilt, shame, sorrow, and anger
  • Navigating major triggers (e.g., your exercise-obsessed best friend, your doctor-prescribed diet for medical reasons)
  • Making it through big life events without Ed’s help (e.g., college, marriage, divorce, babies, job loss, menopause)
  • Grieving the loss of Ed
  • Trauma, posttraumatic growth, and resilience after an eating disorder
  • Sharing your story and supporting others

We will get creative with art, music, mindfulness, and movement. Get ready for some yoga and tai chi and a conversation about intuitive exercise, which sometimes means just taking a nap! We will help you to develop what Jenni has learned to call “leisure skills” (how to relax and have fun) and even the art of doing nothing.

The Life Without Ed® workshop is for women and men (ages 18 or older) who have struggled with disordered eating and all types of eating disorders. Basically, if you know Ed, have filed for divorce from “him,” and are working on finalizing those papers, this workshop is for you. Think of this retreat as a recovery—and life—boost.

We ask that participants be at least 90 days free from engaging in self-destructive behaviors like episodes of bingeing, purging, restricting, substance abuse, and self-harm.


The workshop runs on the following dates in 2018:

 October 26-28    


This workshop is limited to 20 participants. We encourage making reservations three to four weeks in advance. Register by contacting our Workshop Coordinator at 800-244-4949.


Early registration is $1,350 a person until September 15, 2018, then $1,500 a person, all inclusive of meals, lodging, and transportation.


Rio Retreat Center at The Meadows
1245 Jack Burden Road
Wickenburg, Arizona 85390

Lodging and Transporation

Lodging at the Rio Retreat Bunkhouse is included in the cost for Friday and Saturday nights, and is purposely free of the distractions that often accompany hotel lodging. Rooms are simply appointed and are shared occupancy (two guests per room); guests will be placed with a roommate who is also attending the training. Transportation will be available from and back to the Phoenix Airport, and details will be sent with your confirmation email upon completion of the registration process.

Please Note

The Life Without Ed® workshop meets from 1:00 p.m. on Friday to Sunday at 4:00 p.m. The schedule is somewhat flexible to accommodate the size of the group and group process. Evening programming provided after dinner between 6:00 and 7:00 p.m.

The Meadows Rio Retreat campus is strictly alcohol and drug free and has a dress code, cell phone, and smoking policy. Please consult our Workshop Coordinator for more information.

Cancellation / Transfer Policy

We rely on accurate attendance count to make important arrangements for this training. If a cancellation occurs 14 or more days prior to the start of the training, a full refund, less a $200 administrative fee, will be issued. Cancellations less than 14 days before the beginning date of the training are non-refundable. If you have to cancel your attendance, please contact our Intake Department at 800-244-4949 as soon as possible.

For more information or to enroll in the Life Without Ed® workshop, please give us a call at 800-244-4949 or complete the form below. Our Intake Coordinators are happy to assist you between 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. MST weekdays, and from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. MST on weekends.

Contact The Rio Retreat Center

Intensive Workshops • Facilitating Healing • Empowering Emotional Growth

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