And Now, Back to RL (Real Life.)

I don’t think I told you ahead of time that “Spa Week” was actually only four days?  I figured that was probably the average length of a spa week, plus it was all the time I could afford to take off from real life.  Sharon asked why I wouldn’t do this in real life.  That wouldn’t be possible.  I took it seriously.  No obligations at all, just as if I wasn’t at home.  So I did not return phone calls, did not work on financial stuff (mine or my dad’s,) did not wash Noah (LOL, but its one thing I want to get done before the weather really gets cold,) and I did not work on any serious quilting projects.  I had a little embroidery quilt that I did a bit of stitching on in the evenings, but that was it.

One thing I didn’t plan for in my “schedule” was blogging.  It was fun to write down the events of each day, but blogging and loading pictures takes quite a bit of time.  Next time I’ll just schedule that in.  It was an important part of Spa Week!

So, what did I get out of Spa Week?  One thing I re-learned is that exercising a lot only makes me feel better.  Yes, I was sore, but that was a good sore, not the “I feel like crap” sore that I complain about sometimes.  Strength training is important to me as I age.  And swimming is something that REALLY fills in the gaps.  I like the exercise bike at the gym.  I don’t want to spend as much time every day as I did these four days, but I could add in more exercise to my ‘real life.’

The other thing I learned was that pre-planning a menu is really helpful to me.  Writing down two days in a row was even helpful.  Again, nothing particularly new.  I do this sometimes.  But really trying to make every meal/snack nutritious made a big difference in my total food intake.  The calorie count was between 1300 and 1500 each day. For example, after having taco soup for lunch, I would normally want something a little sweet, and I might get a piece of sugar free chocolate (60 cal) to eat.  But having a menu plan, I knew that I had an afternoon snack coming in a couple of hours, and I could wait for that.

There were a couple of times I changed the menu plan.  LIke the day I scheduled a green smoothie for dinner.  I like smoothies.  I like the idea of smoothies.  But I really like to chew my food better.  So I switched the smoothie for mashed cauliflower, veggies, chicken, and a pear.  Same amount of calories.  And about the same nutrition!  Another day, and I was not happy with this, but I learned from it.  I stopped to talk to my neighbor on my way to the gym.  She owns the local Curves.  So after I leave, she comes out to the car and hands me a package of “skinny cow” candies that Curves is giving away.  LOL.  I felt just like the contestants on The Biggest Loser.  I turned that package over and over, checked the stats.  Decided to try one.  TOO SWEET.  And then I ate the rest of them.  So I eliminated the afternoon snack, and that was that.  I was going to the gym, so I was okay.  If I had been going shopping, I might very well have been tempted to get more sugary stuff.

So sugar.  Like I said at the beginning of the week, a goal was VERY MINIMAL sugar.  When I analyzed what I ate for the week, I was a little surprised at how many things had a little sugar in them.  Like my scones have a little sugar on top of them .  Vicky’s lo-bars have chocolate chips (sugar), her red lentil and rice concoction has a tiny bit of sugar, as do her coconut cashew cookies.  One day I had some Kashi cereal, and I realized after that it was lightly sweetened.  But nothing had a large amount of sugar like regular cookies or cake.  That is what makes me crave more and more.  And also leaves me less satisfied so I need to eat more nutritious food on top of it.  Again, this is not really new information to me.  Rather it is a confirmation of what I already knew about food (as it relates to me.)  I plan to keep this minimal sugar rule.

Wheat?  Wow, that was really easy to eliminate.  I had an average of 3 grain servings a day–none wheat.  Usually only 1 dairy, 2-3 protein, and 5-8 fruits and veggies.  That batch cooking makes it easier for me to get more veggies in.  I tend to like cooked veggies better than salad.  I like salad, but the way I like it tends to be a little higher in calories than cooked vegetables.

I know you all will be interested in this.  I lost 2 pounds over these four days.  That was not really a goal for me, as I knew that increasing my exercise, and swimming more could actually increase my weight temporarily.  So that is a nice plus.

I also really liked cleaning house on Saturday and doing that batch cooking.  I am going to make this a regular routine.  I will try to control the batch size LOL.

I am going to give myself permission to have two days a week that concentrate more on exercise.  Like I have said, ‘time’ is one of the big limiters of my exercise.  So I will still be walking every day.  But at least on those two days I will get to the gym and spend a longer amount of time there.

Money saved by doing spa week at home?  For me about $1150!  Here’s the very first link when I googled ‘spa retreat,’ $800, plus at least $100 travel money, and $250 for doggie care.  Having the doggies to take care of during spa week took up time that I wouldn’t have to spend if I were at a real spa.  But they also provide that nurturing element–relaxation and fun–that you wouldn’t get without them.  Plus I get to sleep in my own bed at home!

I think this is enough blather for now.  I have a lot of catch up stuff to do today (as well as exercise LOL) and then tomorrow I leave for my annual trip to the big Pacific International Quilt Show!  I know.  My life is really very difficult right now LOL.


11 thoughts on “And Now, Back to RL (Real Life.)

  1. I have thoroughly enjoyed every bit of your spa week!

    ” I like smoothies. I like the idea of smoothies. But I really like to chew my food better. ” That is sooooo me. I think discoveries like this are just as important as all the rest of it.

  2. HI Debby

    I’m glad you had such a great spa week. I always tell myself that if i win the lotto i’m treating myself to the Red Mountain Spa……it looks divine…..with the sunsets and the hiking….Have a fun , safe trip! Hugs! deb

    • Probably increased exercise and very controlled diet. I usually try for 1300-1500 calories, but many times I go over. I don’t think the no wheat had anything to do with it. Except maybe eating wheat makes me want to eat more??

  3. Loved the recap and I’d missed the part where you really were imagining spa week as if you were really at a spa! Of course, you couldn’t do it permanently. But I do think there are elements you can incorporate just as you said.

    It was a great idea and IMHO, a rousing success!

  4. I lived vicariously though your spa week and enjoyed it thoroughly. 🙂 Maybe this should be a quarterly thing. Nice to see what worked, and what you will be able to incorporate into your regular life.

    Also, I’m sure the pups were glad to have you home during the week, and also be a part of it! 🙂

  5. How fantastic for you! Oh, and the doggie daycare thing? I can’t go anywhere and enjoy myself unless I know that they are somewhere fun (and for your dogs, where else would they want to be except with you?) Yay for the money you saved, and it’s so nice to read about you doing things to take care of YOU!

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