Whether you’re looking to lose a few pounds or you need to completely overhaul your health, it can be helpful to leave your normal routine behind. That’s why, to hit their health and weight-loss goals, some women are deciding to pack up and head off to all-inclusive weight-loss camps. Maybe you’ve considered it yourself.
“For many women leaving behind their normal, and probably hectic, routine to focus solely on themselves can be the perfect way to kickstart a healthier lifestyle,” says Keri Gans, R.D.N., C.N.S., a nutrition consultant and author of The Small Change Diet.
And, no, these weight-loss retreats are anything but barbaric boot camps where you march for hours on end and eat a leaf of lettuce for dinner. With relaxing, spa-like environments, deliciously healthy food, and fun fitness classes, these weight-loss camps are about complete mind-body wellness. Just picture it: zero distractions keeping you from your workouts, no obligations to anyone but yourself, and 24/7 self-care.
Plus, many of these weight-loss resorts offer expert-led programs backed by extensive research. Dietitians, trainers, psychologists, and physicians are all on staff to teach camp-goers the tips and practical strategies to not only lose the weight, but keep it off for good.
Still, just like there’s no one-size-fits-all perfect diet or workout, weight-loss camps come in myriad varieties to suit every weight-loss warrior’s unique needs and preferences. Looking for an ultra-luxe getaway? An opportunity to kick emotional eating for good? Keep reading to find the weight-loss retreat that’s just right for you, and hear expert input from Gans and other nutrition pros on why these getaways are so effective.
Green Mountain at Fox Run
For more than 40 years, this women’s-only retreat has led a mindfulness-based healthy living program in Vermont’s peaceful Green Mountains. With a non-diet, individualized approach that avoids rules or restriction, Green Mountain is especially well-suited for women who struggle with binge and emotional eating or who have conditions such as diabetes, polycystic ovary syndrome, or metabolic syndrome.
Expert input: “The support team of dietitians, therapists, trainers and other participants help you build the knowledge and skills you need to change your life, take better care of yourself, and manage a healthy weight. You will leave feeling like a new person.” —Rebecca Scritchfield, R.D.N., author of Body Kindness
Cool perk: You’ll become a mindful-eating expert, not only by learning about it in theory, but also by having guided “mindful” meals throughout your stay.
Cost: All-inclusive rates start at $3,000 per week. That includes accommodations, meals, health assessments, workshops, fitness activities, and more.
Learn more: fitwoman.com
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Canyon Ranch Tuscon
The Life Enhancement Center at this resort’s flagship location offers unique weeklong “journeys to wellness” programs uniquely designed to jumpstart weight loss. But you won’t find cookie-cutter classes or bland, dreary food at Canyon Ranch. With a ton of cutting-edge programs, delicious healthy food, and access to experts in medicine, nutrition, fitness, and life management, you will take away practical skills, knowledge, and support to help you establish healthy habits for life.
Expert input: “Canyon Ranch appears to offer the perfect balance between exercise, eating right, and mindfulness. With a team of experts, including registered dietitians/nutritionists, they provide you with practical guidelines to help start you on your journey.” —Keri Gans, R.D.N., C.D.N.
Cool perk: You’ll have access to Canyon Ranch’s fully-equipped 80,000-square-foot spa facility, featuring four pools and more than 225 services.
Cost: Starting at $1,090 per night.
Learn more: canyonranch.com
Related: Jillian Michaels Says These 6 Easy Tips Will Help You Lose Weight Like You’re On ‘The Biggest Loser’
Hilton Head Health
Hilton Head Island, SC
Whether you’re looking to shed a few pounds or lose 50+, you can find the right fit at this all-inclusive resort located on a beautiful island in South Carolina. Choose from its one-week “Jumpstart” program, which acts as a “launching pad” for successful weight loss, the four-week “LoseWell” intensive program for those with chronic weight issues, or the “LivingWell” program to customize your ideal healthy vacation.
Expert input: “Hilton Head Health not only offers you a supportive team while you are staying with them, but also provide an aftercare program to help your transition to home be that much easier.” —Keri Gans, R.D.N., C.D.N.
Cool perk: The on-site demo kitchen offers healthy cooking workshops full of great recipes and simple techniques you can take home.
Cost: Starting at $2,850 per week.
Learn more: hhhealth.com
Related: ‘This Major Life Change Helped Me Lose 60 Pounds And Beat Addiction’
Red Mountain Resort
St. George, UT
Set within the red rock canyons of southern Utah, this wellness resort offers customized seven-day weight loss retreats to help improve your health and well-being. Along with daily guided hikes and fitness classes, you’ll receive personalized metabolic testing, nutritional guidance, personal training, and one-on-one sessions with experts to address the emotional roadblocks that often interfere with long-term success.
Expert input: “The individualized guidance provided by experts in the field of nutrition and fitness set this program apart. Guests will leave with the knowledge and the tools needed to succeed in reaching their goals, while also feeling rejuvenated and refreshed after a week of spa treatments, nutritious food, and endless fitness classes.” —Jim White, R.D.N.
Cool perk: You can opt in to the resort’s 28-day smoothie program, which sets you up with delicious beverages to drink at the resort and more for you to enjoy at home.
Cost: Starting at $2,200 for seven nights.
Learn more: redmountainresort.com
This weeklong retreat in the mountains of British Columbia provides a holistic weight-loss program with hiking at its core. Using Nordic Trekking poles, you’ll torch a ton of calories and build muscle while taking in the gorgeous scenery. Guests also take part in activities like yoga, massage, classes, lectures, and more, while enjoying fresh spa cuisine catering to all dietary restrictions.
Expert input: “It’d be impossible not to leave feeling energized, inspired, and recharged after a week of nurturing your mind and body while enjoying breathtaking views, challenging hikes, inspiring lectures, and more at Mountain Trek.” —Jim White, R.D.N.
Cool perk: Two body-composition assessments are offered throughout the week so you can see the effects of the programs in action.
Cost: $5,100 per person per week.
Learn more: mountaintrek.com
Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa
This resort provides a mindfulness-based approach to health and wellness set in the natural beauty of the Sonoran desert. Choose from the nearly endless offerings to improve your health during your stay, including spa treatments, outdoor adventures, unique fitness classes (think Zen bootcamp, cardio dance, and yoga on paddleboards), healthy cooking workshops, and more. (Dance your way fit at home with High-Intensity Dance Cardio, the first-ever socanomics DVD!)
Expert input: “No matter what the goal, visitors will leave with renewed strength in mind and body after spending time at Miraval. No two experiences at this space are alike with the endless options for activities, spa treatments, nutrition programs, and lectures.” —Jim White, R.D.N., owner of Jim White Fitness and Nutrition Studios
Cool perk: The sun shines 350 days per year here, so no matter what time of year you go, you can take advantage of all the outdoor activities in the nearby mountains and desert.
Cost: All-inclusive rates start at $649 per night (includes meals, coffee, smoothies and snacks, transportation from Tucson Airport, daily classes, lectures, yoga and meditation).
Learn more: miravalresorts.com
Related: ‘The Advice My Trainer Gave Me That Helped Me Lose 80 Pounds In One Year’
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