“Every ending is the beginning of something else. Every exit is an entry somewhere else.”
The end of the year is an ideal time to pause, reflect and plan. For our 2018 Wellness Resolutions we looked to eight leading spa and wellness leaders from across North America. These are their suggestions for achievable and rewarding resolutions for 2018.
Make 2018 the year to step outside your comfort zone with a challenge to take your work-out – outside! “Many studies support that the physical, emotional and intellectual benefits of your work-out, from yoga to a brisk walk or are increased when performed outdoors”, says Tracey Welsh, General Manager of Red Mountain Resort, in St. George, Utah.
“The exposure to sunshine boosts Vitamin D, important to bone health, metabolism and mood boosting endorphins”, says Welsh. “The key to a lasting and successful resolution may be finding the optimal outdoor location. A beautiful setting in nature not only allows you to receive the cardio benefit from your work-outs, but you also gain the benefits of unplugging from technology as you drink in what Mother Nature has created”.
Sleep, or lack thereof is at an all time high and a quest for many in 2018. Roughly 80% of adults have difficulty sleeping and 10-15% have chronic insomnia, all due to stress. “We’ve noticed a huge increase from our spa guests in the interest of how to obtain a better sleep”, says Jennifer Hipwell, Spa Director, at Southern Ontario’s The Spa at White Oaks.
“While many resort to prescription and over the counter medications, more and more want to go the natural route and look to us for advice”, says Hipwell. “While a massage or yoga class is fantastic, they now want take home solutions and practices. Wearable sleep technology such sleep bands are becoming very popular. Aromatherapy sleep mists and ergonomic neck and spine support pillows were also hot items this holiday season. We’ve broadened our retail selection to include more holistic sleep aids to help our guests needs.”
Hiking outdoors has huge benefits for the mind and body. It’s easy to start, inexpensive and it’s an activity you can begin even if you are just starting a fitness routine. “Whether you are looking to hike in an area close to your home or planning a hiking vacation, there are many benefits to hiking you won’t find in a gym,” says Jimmy LeSage, the founder of New Life Hiking Spa in Killington, Vermont.
“Hiking is great for your mental outlook and physical health”, says LeSage. “It’s a proven scientific fact that being outdoors and looking at a natural landscape will make you feel happier. Hiking outdoors can help reduce insomnia, release stress and increase your level of Vitamin D. Hiking on varied terrain can strengthen your core and work leg muscles. The benefits are all encompassing and it forces you to be in the present moment in the beauty of nature.”
4. Realize You Are Enough
“Happiness comes from within and when we manifest this happiness, and realize you are enough, beautiful things happen to you and to those around you”, says Mary Schinbeckler, Spa Director at the Turtle Cove Spa, Mountain Harbor Resort, Arkansas. “If you meet yourself where you are, right now, without reservation or condemnation; you will begin savoring this incredible journey called life.”
5. Everyday Wellness
Maintaining optimal wellness does not need to be costly or onerous; time consuming or include foods and concoctions that taste awful, in fact everyday wellness can be a part of everyone’s life. “Whether you are looking to revolutionize your daily routine or make subtle changes, the key is to ensure your choices are manageable”, says Leah Podollan, Spa Owner of northern Alberta’s L Spa and Wellness Centre. And even if they are manageable, you’ve really got to genuinely want change”.
Random samplings of daily goodness Podollan has incorporated into her lifestyle for optimal health include avocados, perfectly ripe, enjoyed with freshly squeezed lemon juice and when overripe they make for a fantastic facial and body moisturizer while showering. Steamed artichokes are an immediate detox cleanse in a leaf; a gastrointestinal reset flush (pardon the pun) – best enjoyed dipped in garlic and lemon juice. And speaking of garlic, this undisputed ruler of health has been used as food or medicine for thousands of years and Podollan suggests at least ½ a bulb a day. Lemon and ginger being complimentary allies and are squeezed and sliced into her culinary creativity by adding them to a cup of hot water, tea or with vegetables.
For face, body and mind, Podollan swears by mineral makeup and a quarterly facial at each season’s change. And she believes in sweat and benefits of exercising every second day, says Podollan, “Sweat is Mother Nature’s natural detox that help keep the pores clean, skin fresh and the added benefit of sweating is the release of endorphins that keep the mind happy.”
Float Therapy is a hydrotherapy experience that provides a profound sense of relaxation and weightlessness with immediate healing qualities for the body, mind, and soul.
“One resolution that we love it dedicating time for mindfulness,” says Nancy Deaton, Spa Director of Pennyslvania’s The Lodge at Woodloch. “Sometimes you might need a little help to keep you mind focused on the current moment and we find that Float Therapy is the perfect tool to help do that. Plus, it has amazing health benefits to top it off.”
“The Lodge at Woodloch’s Float Cabin can be used as a sensory deprivation experience as the water and solitude removes sound, light, and outside stimulants to allow for a unique meditative state,” says Deaton. “Or, guests can choose to stimulate the senses by adjusting the lighting and music to preference. With high levels of Epsom salts, the benefits of Float Therapy include the relief of muscular tension, joint inflammation and arthritic pain, as well as improved sleep, concentration, and skin ailments. Float Therapy can also help to reduce headaches, high blood pressure, and more.”
“When looking at wellness, as a whole, spas are the perfect place to really relieve stress,” says Lisa Miles, Spa Director of Glacial Waters Spa located at Grand View Lodge Spa & Golf Resort in central Minnesota. “Our Hydrotherapy services like our Vichy Shower is one of the most sought after treatments.”
“Although the Vichy Shower can be used as a compliment service to other treatments, many guests prefer one of the stand-alone services we have specially created,” says Miles. A Vichy treatment uses multiple shower heads and adjusts the pressure at desired positions on the guest while they lay face down on a specially designed wet table allowing water to drain away from the body. “The treatment is designed to help lymphatic circulation which helps the immune system. It also helps simulate responses from the nervous system which improves blood flow and reduces a number of stress hormones produced,” says Miles. “It is a very popular service for our guests.”
New Year resolutions should be not so specific that you are criticizing yourself for what you did or didn’t do. Keep it simple; do not make it complicated. Making a few mindful changes to enhance your lifestyle will help you be successful with your New Year goals. A nice way to start is by setting resolutions that can bring infinite possibilities… examples: improve your overall well-being, take a journey to self-discovery, leave your options open to new things, explore new places, connect with others and you will continue to grow in all facets of life.
During your next spa visit, consider a Himalyan Salt treatment. “A top spa treatment here at Spa Shiki is our Himalayan Salt Stone Massage,” says Jessica Smith, Director of Lake Ozark, Missouri’s Spa Shiki. “Using salt stones mined from ancient sea beds of the Himalayan Mountains. This therapeutic treatment contains 84 pure trace minerals making this treatment extremely relaxing, re-mineralizing to the body, and helps balance the central nervous system, while cleansing the body energetically. ”
“Himalayan salt products all allow you to take a piece of the spa home with you,” says Smith. From hand carved Himalayan Salt lamps and stones to baths salts which will help improve your sleeping patterns, supports weight loss, reduces stress, and will give you an instant sense of improved well-being”.