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What to Expect from Your First Time at a Spa Retreat

If you’ve ever wanted to get away from home and fully unwind while someone caters to your every need, a spa retreat may be what you’re looking for. Spa retreats can help you de-stress, improve mental and physical health, help you get better sleep, and make you feel extremely good about yourself. So, here is everything you need to know if it’s your first time going to a spa retreat.

A Spa Retreat Can Help Reduce Stress

Imagine going somewhere where you get pampered all day, fed all the best foods, and getting massaged for hours. That’s exactly what this type of retreat will offer you. By doing so, not only will you feel great but chances are high that you’ll forget most of your worries. Even if it is for a short while, reducing stress even for a little bit can significantly improve your health. In addition, if you make spa retreats a regular thing you can eliminate stress entirely and lead a much better, healthier, and happier life. 

A Spa Retreat Will Teach You Valuable Life Skills

What valuable life skills are we talking about when we say this? Well, a great spa retreat will make sure you learn how to feel great long after you leave. Imagine the benefits from the spa retreat being applied to your everyday life. Well, thanks to the professional coaches and guidance, you will learn how to maintain this happy and healthy lifestyle long after leaving the retreat.

Spa Retreats Can Help You Find Your Purpose

Aside from going to relieve stress or escape your worries, a spa retreat can help you find yourself and your purpose. What does this mean? Many types of spa retreats teach you how to meditate and focus on finding inner peace. By doing so, you can deeply analyze your life and potentially discover what you really want. It’s completely normal not knowing what you want out of life. As a result, finding it will make you happier and more fulfilled. 

Top 5 Benefits from Going to a Spa Retreat

The things we mentioned above are just a small taste of what spa retreats can really offer. However, no amount of explaining will be the same as actually going and experiencing the rewards of a good spa retreat. A few of the main things you can expect to gain from going to one are the following:

  1. Improve your current mental and physical state
  2. Get much better sleep and be more rested both in body and mind
  3. Going to a spa retreat regularly will help prevent various health problems
  4. A spa retreat greatly increases your mood
  5. Spa retreats help with anti-aging

Conclusion

So, whether you’re looking to de-stress, improve your sleep, get some peace and quiet, or better your mood, a great spa retreat can offer all of that and much more. The benefits of spa retreats are limitless. On top of that, you can improve almost all aspects of life if you make them a regular thing.

Girl Sitting raising Hands

Fun Ways to Workout

Fun Ways to Workout

There are so many different ways to exercise that you don’t actually need to join a gym – unless you want to of course.

The most important thing is that if you are enjoying what you are doing then you won’t even realize that you are exercising!

Find something that you love doing and just go for it.

Have you thought about playing tennis? You can do it with friends or even join a club. Did you know that you can even get private sessions with a coach who will also be able to help your technique?

Play basketball – grab a couple of friends and hit the court. You will be getting sweaty before you even know it.

The batting cages – a great strength workout and also a great way to clear your mind – it’s a win win really

Swimming is a great all over workout – head to your local pool or even the beach. For a better workout grab a set of googles so you are not getting water in your eyes you’re set.

Hiking – if you are busy looking at the views nature has on offer you won’t even realize you have just walked up a hill. Exercising outdoors is also a great way to clear your mind. Why not enjoy a healthy picnic afterwards and make a great day of it.

Shopping – I know who would have thought that going shopping can help you get fit. It is not a high intensity exercise but have you ever noticed how many miles you have walked on a day of shopping. How heavy are those bags you are carrying by the end of the day. You don’t always need to go crazy when you exercise, just moving is great.

Golf – say no to the golf cart next time and walk the course instead.

What is comes down to is find something you love to do and you will do it more often because you enjoy it and that equals a healthier and happy you!!

Fitness camp for Women

Are you joining a gym or hiring a personal trainer?

Are you joining a gym or hiring a personal trainer? Here is what you should know first.

There are so many choices out there when it comes to joining gyms or getting a personal trainer that it can all become a little overwhelming. So we have come up with a first tips to make the process a whole lot easier.

First up you need to decide what you want to do – are you going to find a gym near your home or work, do you want the trainer to be at the gym or come to you, what sort of gym do you want to join (think about what kind of exercise you want to do and also the time of the day you will be there)

Ok so let’s look at the gyms first. Find a gym that is close to you – either your home or work. Find one that doesn’t take you long to get to – maybe you can even walk there (make sure you have thought about the winter months!) If you are going there on the way home from work look for one that is on your route already that way you can’t say it was out of the way.

Now you have decided on the location go in and check out the place – is the training style what you are after? For example is it just a circuit based gym or does it have classes and what is the schedule like – does it fit in with the times you are able to be there? Is the gym equipment want you want to use? Take a tour and have a chat to the staff there – TIP they will usually offer you a free session or maybe even complimentary week trail.

Let’s look at Personal Trainers – you have decided to either go to a gym and train with them there or they will come to you and train (this is a good option if you need a little extra motivation not to cancel!) If they are coming to you they will bring all of the equipment with them.

The trick with trainers is to find one that will have your goals in mind. They will listen to the style of training you want and adapt the sessions if you have any injuries. They are there to push you a little harder each session and not to just chat or be your friend. You want them to be working you hard.

If you are not enjoying the session or want to change it up make sure you tell them – at the end of the day they work for you and they need to be providing the service you want – TIP they will generally give you a free session as a trial. You can also generally buy them in packs which means the more you buy the more discount you can expect.

Happy Training!!

Food

Eating Out and Weight Loss

Do you struggle to stick to your healthy eating plan when it’s time to Eating Out? Are you worried you won’t be able to lose weight?

You are not alone, eating out can be one of the most daunting experiences when you are trying to lose weight.  So much so that many people stop going out altogether!!

By staying at home it actually makes you feel like you are missing out on something and then what generally happens is we eat to comfort that feeling of loss.

So below are some tips to help make it easier to get out and about

  • Always stick to your portion size. By staying on track with your portion size it means you won’t over indulge and walk away feeling full and bloated.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for something that is not on the menu or specify how you want something cooked. If they serve fried fish they will generally be able to grill it for you.
  • Don’t order all 3 courses. Try to stick to 2 out of the 3 courses on offer. You will also be better off choosing the soup or salad than the desert!!
  • If your meal comes out and it is too big get another plate and take off the bits you shouldn’t eat and then have the waiter take them away so you are not tempted by it.
  • Always ask for the dressings to be on the side and stay away from the creamy ones
  • Always ask for a side salad or a serve of vegetables if your meal doesn’t come with any.
  • Pick a restaurant where you know they have healthy options

Below are some of the foods you should limit or ideally try to avoid from some of your favourite types restaurants

Asian (Thai or Chinese)

Anything Fried (spring rolls), coconut curries, dishes that have the skin or batter on (lemon chicken or crispy skin duck)

Italian

Creamy pasta’s or risotto’s, pizza’s, garlic bread, lasagne (unless vegetarian)

Mexican

Corn chips, anything with too much cheese or sour cream

Pub meals

Anything deep fried, wings and ribs (or anything with lots of sauce) creamy pasta’s, garlic bread

Indian

Anything deep fried (samosas), creamy curries (butter chicken), naan bread, pappadums

When on a healthy eating plan it is important to ensure you are still enjoying yourself and if that means going out then you shouldn’t give that up – just remember to choose the healthy options!!

 

 

 

 

 

Girl Running

Don’t wait for summer to get fit and lose weight

Ok so winter is on the way out and the warmer weather should be on its way in (hopefully!). Bring on Summer!

Are you wanting to lose weight and get fit for summer? Well don’t wait until the sun is out and the temperatures are warmer the best time to start is now!! Then you will be ready and feeling good for when the warmer weather hits.

I know the temperature is still chilly outside and the thought of going out and exercising is overwhelming but guess what there are loads of exercises you can do inside.

You can use a treadmill, or rower or any form of cardio exercise equipment. If you don’t have the room then use simply jog on the spot or do high knees. If you have someone that can exercise with you then try some boxing – it is such a great cardio and strength workout.

You can do so many different exercises with just a mat and a small amount of space – sit-ups, pushups, squats, lunges just to name a few!
If you can get some small weights (if you can’t have a look at what is in your pantry or fridge that you can use instead – a bottle of water, tinned items- anything that is a little heavy!)

Try some bicep curls, shoulder presses, you can even hold the weights while you are doing the squats and lunges.

So that is the exercise covered now onto the food!

If you are not quite ready to switch to salads then make sure you are getting plenty of vegetables in. Stews and soups are great when the weather is cool outside and you can also make extra so that you have plenty left over for the week!

Lets start making the healthier choice when it comes to food and throw away the comfort winter foods that are so easy to turn to when the weather is miserable outside.

So let’s get started now!

Creamy-Sweet-Potato-Soup

Healthy Winter Meals

Healthy Winter Meals

So winter has definitely hit in many parts of the country so now is when the it’s too cold, or it’s too wet excuses come out.

If you are struggling with exercise – you know you could always join a gym or even exercise inside- then it really is vitally important to focus on your food.

During winter we tend to let our diet slip a little as we are rugged up in big fitting warm clothes so it takes a little longer to notice the extra pount or two that joins us!

Cold weather can mean great warm foods, like stews or roasts with veggies and even soups.

Soups are a great way to stick to portions sizes as the other options can easily become comfort food and our usual portion sizes get thrown out the window.

Most good soups will have all the necessary food groups in there (protein, carbs and vegetables) which means they are generally quite hearty soups that fill you up – so there is no need to have  bread or a roll.

Soups are also really simple to make and you can make loads of it so by putting some in the freezer you will have meals already made for the next few days or even the following week.

The recipe below is one of our yummy retreat favorites.

Chicken and sweet potato soup (serves 4)

Ingredients

1.25L (5 cups) chicken stock (low salt)

2 orange sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 2cm cubes

1 large red onion, halved, chopped

2 garlic cloves, quartered

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1/2 tsp. dried oregano leaves

Freshly ground black pepper

2 small single chicken breast fillets

1 bunch fresh continental parsley

250ml (1 cup) full-fat soy milk

 

Method:

  1. Bring the chicken stock to the boil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add the sweet potato, onion, garlic, thyme and oregano. Season with pepper and bring to the boil. Cook, covered, for 10 minutes or until the sweet potato is tender. Remove from heat. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool.
  2. While soup is cooking, cut chicken into 1cm pieces. Coarsely chop parsley to make 1/4 cup, loosely packed. Set aside. Place one-quarter of soup in the jug of a blender and blend until smooth. Transfer to a clean saucepan. Repeat with remaining soup in three more batches.
  3. Bring soup to the boil over medium heat. Add chicken and parsley and cook for 3 minutes or until chicken is cooked.
  4. Remove from heat. Stir in soy milk and season with pepper.

 

Halloween Candy.

Halloween and your Goals

With Halloween just around the corner this means CANDY CANDY CANDY!

Everywhere you go all you see is huge bags of sugary, sweet candy. For most people this means healthy eating is thrown out the window along with any hope of weight loss and any goals that you have set.

The best way to battle the holiday is to enjoy it!

You know what, you are allowed a few treats here and there just don’t go overboard. Remember they are treats so they shouldn’t be part of your everyday meal plan.

If you are struggling and find yourself eating them every day then take a minute and focus on what your goals are.

Write them down again so you can see them – if it helps, you can even put them in front of your candy so when you go to reach for the sweets you see your goals first.

Remind yourself that your goals are important and that you are willing to do what is needed to reach those goals.

When it comes to your meal plan include your treats in there and you will find that you are less likely to eat them randomly.

When it comes to eating your treats make sure the you enjoy them!

When you are at the retreat we talk about not feeling guilty if you have over indulged. You need to tell yourself that it is ok and you move on from it. At Ontrack we see so many people that tell us that once they start eating bad then they feel that they have ruined their diet and that they feel so bad that all they do is keep eating badly. Don’t let it ruin the good work you have put in so far, you haven’t ruined anything. Just refocus, work on your goals and you will be back to eating healthy before you know it!

Happy Halloween from all of us at Ontrack Retreats

Emotional Eating

Is stress eating you Alive

This time of the year is notorious for stress!! We are coming into the holiday season and that brings with it so many things –

Halloween

Thanksgiving

Christmas

Family

Work/office parties

These are just a few of the common ones that have us freaked out already!!

What happens to us when we get stressed – well many things but for some people it brings with it overeating (generally on junk food) which in turns sees our weight increase

Well don’t panic I have a few tricks that might help you get through the rest of year without gaining that unwanted weight and possibly even enjoying the Holiday Season!!

I am sure you have all heard of a journal or a diary before, how many of you have actually used one? Instead of it being a general journal why not make it more specific to writing down the things that are making you feel stressed.  You can even add a little section in there to note down what you ate – that way when you sit back and look over it you can see if on the days you were feeling stressed did you reach straight for the chocolate or candy!!

When you are looking back at your notes make sure you look to see if there are any recurring stress emotions – for example do you work with someone who on a particular day each week drives you completely mad – you can’t change their emotions and feeling but you can look at the way you deal with them! Don’t let their moods affect you, take a few deeps breaths when you see them calling or coming over to your desk. Smile – it is amazing how a smile can make you change your emotions!!

Lists, lists and more lists – sometimes writing down a list of what you need to buy or do (works great if you are the one organizing parties or having Thanksgiving at your home) can help you remember where you are and what you still need to do. If you do not have these lists you can end up waking up at crazy times of the night and not sleeping which leaves you emotional and we all know what can happen when you are emotional.

Control the situations you can control and forget about the rest– we spend so much time getting upset and angry about things we really can’t control. You can’t control someone else’s behaviour or actions but you can control your own. Don’t let someone else get inside your head!!

If you have a bad day, don’t make it a bad week. We always stress about what we ate yesterday or that we didn’t exercise but what happened yesterday is old news look forward and not back. There is no point ruining a whole week because you had a bad day.

Perfection usually means failure! Nobody is perfect just give it your best!!

Weight loss training camp

Why a Health Retreat

Have you ever wondered if a health retreat can help you?

Well the answer is simply YES it can!

Most of our guests know that to lose weight you need to eat less and move more but the hardest part of that equation is actually doing it.

While everyday life can put you into some tricky to handle situations (office birthdays, kids, stress, work) a retreat can help you work out the best way to juggle it all while still enjoying life – which is the most important thing of all!

Getting away from your bad habits and spending some time to focus just on yourself will allow you to focus on what is really important – YOU!!

While you are at the retreat it really is all about you! You will enjoy some really healthy yet amazingly delicious food (none of it is considered rabbit food so don’t worry you won’t go hungry!)

Spend some time improving your fitness with trainer instructed classes, where you will enjoy so many different forms of exercise. You may have done some of these in the past or they could
be completely new to you but either way the trainers will be there to help you every step of the way! You could be doing some great gym work, some empowering boxing sessions or even an aqua class.

The seminars are the most beneficial part of the retreat. They will help you deal with subjects like emotional & binge eating, nutrition, motivation – and all the other things which might have stopped you achieving success in the past.

Having that support there and knowing that you are not alone really is the key to being successful and that is why so many people choose to go to a health retreat.

If you are struggling to get your life under control then why not visit a Health Retreat!

Plan

Plan your way to success

Organisation is the most important way to succeed in your health and fitness goals.
Now is the time to be honest – how organised are you really?

Do you have a meal plan?

The easiest way to stick to a new and healthy menu is to work it out at least a week in advance, that way you can see that it is well balanced and incorporates all of the food groups. Make sure you put your snacks and treats on there as well. If you are eating out ensure you fill that out as well.

Do you have a shopping list or do you go to the shops with no idea what you really need?
Once you have done your meal plan it easily transfers over to a shopping list. If you go to the shop unprepared it opens you up to some much temptation – it’s the same as going to the shops hungry!

Now for your kitchen cupboards

It’s really time to throw away all the junk for in your cupboards and fridge – I know many of you think it is a waste of food but which waste would you prefer it to go to – if it’s not the waste bin it will be your waist line so it’s your choice!

If you are going to be tempted by any food in the house that you know is not good for you then get rid of it. You are sabotaging yourself!!

So now you have your kitchen all set up ready to for success it’s time to have a look at your clothes

It’s much easier to exercise when you feel good in the clothes you are wearing. Buy some nice workout clothes – they don’t need to be expensive just something that makes you feel good.
Once you have your new clothes organise you r closet. Get rid of any clothes that are too big for you – you don’t want to have them there are a fall back option. If you have something that is a bit too small for you bring it to the front of the closet so that you see it every day and it is a great reminder of why you’re changing your lifestyle.

Remember the more you plan and organise yourself the more successful you will be.