Golden-door-health-retreat

How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Every single one of us needs to simply stop and recharge – regularly! Most of us have experienced times where stress is high, deadlines are tight and yet we still seem to be able to move mountains. On the flip side, I can guarantee that all of us have also experienced periods of the same pressure yet feel we are not firing on all cylinders – resulting in lower quality of work being produced or it taking longer to complete.

Allow your body enough time each night to recharge. Start with attempting to get 7-8 hours of quality sleep every night. We are all different with regards to the amount of sleep we require to operate optimally, however the average 7-8 hours is a great place to start. While we sleep we unplug from our lives and environment, allowing our brain to rest, process information gathered throughout the day and to store this information as memory. Our ability to function and be alert is directly related to the amount of restful sleep we have.

Try the following tips to get a good nights sleep:

  • Have a regular sleep pattern. Establish a regular bedtime and rising time routine. Through repetition you will train your body and your brain into this pattern
  • Keep your bedroom dark. Ensure your bedroom is sufficiently darkened as this will promote uninterrupted sleep
  • Neutralise noise. Sleep in a quiet environment. Our brain focuses on the noise around us just in case it proves to be dangerous
  • Wind down. Create a routine before going to bed that promotes relaxation. This could include a warm bath, reading a book or drinking warm milk. The amino acid tryptophan in milk helps produce serotonin (happy hormone) and melatonin (sleep hormone)
  • Switch off. Turn computers and phones off at least an hour before bed. The screens promote wakefulness, so don’t get into the habit of using these devices in bed.

Take a 10-minute break from the frantic pace of life and just be still. You might surprise yourself with what you can achieve after you allow your brain to stop and recharge.

When was the last time you took a holiday, one where you didn’t take your laptop, reports to read, answer work calls, but simply switched everything off? When did you sit down to read a book or watch a movie, enjoy the sunshine in your garden or simply catch up with friends? All of these things recharge our batteries. Select some that connect with you and add then to your life regularly. In no time you will be back moving mountains and firing on all cylinders.

By Mel Ingram, wellness consultant and retreat physio at Golden Door Health Retreat & Spa Elysia

August 23, 2014

Is It Too Difficult To Separate Work And Home Life?

In today’s society, with Internet access available readily at our fingertips, more and more women are turning to the ‘connected lifestyle’ to manage their busy lives. Women are busier than ever, juggling work life and motherhood and with technology developing right before our eyes, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to switch off when the workday has ended. In fact, in a 2013 survey by AVG Australia, 62 per cent of women said mobile devices make it hard to separate home and work life.

The Golden Door Health Retreat & Spa, Elysia are leaders as a destination for guests to not only detox, but also e-tox – that means no laptop, iPad, e-reader or TV. While that may sound scary to some, general manager Brigid Walsh says her team encourages retreat guests to limit their use of technology while e-toxing.

“Guests find it invigorating to escape from being constantly  ‘plugged in’ and have quality face-to-face time with fellow guests and staff at the retreat. We encourage guests to enjoy meal times together and without the distractions of technology, allow them enjoy the simplicity of food and life. This reminds guests to slow down and be more present in the moment.”

Set in the peaceful surroundings of the Hunter Valley, just two and a half hours from the hustle and bustle of Sydney, Golden Door Health Retreat & Spa, Elysia is an sanctuary of serenity where guests are encouraged to disconnect from their devices in order to regain some of the passion, energy, creativity and clarity that gets lost in the stresses of everyday life.

“We find our guests relish in the huge range of activities Elysia has on offer and use it as an opportunity to take time to re-connect with themselves without the pressure of technology getting in the way. They are finding it easier to switch-off in the ‘real world’ and less likely to go back to the excessive levels they were use to,” Brigid said.

While Golden Door Health Retreat & Spa, Elysia, encourages guests to disconnect from their devices while e-toxing, there is, of course, no restriction in staying in touch with family and friends via mobile phone from their accommodation.

It’s time now for women to unplug the charger to their laptop and focus on recharging their lives. We all could all benefit from learning to switch off every once in awhile. For more information on programs and packages go to www.goldendoor.com.au

July 2, 2014

Tried And Tested: Golden Door Health Retreat

It’s not often in life you get to sit back, relax and let worries go (well, not often in my life anyway) and that is precisely why a stay at the Golden Door Health Retreat Elysia was an absolute treat for me. Not only was I to be pampered in the spa and fed like a queen but I was also encouraged to stop. Yes, just stop. Stop thinking, stop worrying, stop relying on caffeine (this one scared me), stop craving, stop working. Hmmm, so that last one was a challenge. It is also suggested that guests refrain from the use of their technology – a digital detox of sorts. Although, in the confines of your villa, it was perfectly fine to contact loved ones via mobile phone if you choose.

I arrived for my two-night stay on a Friday around midday and, not wanting to deter from my usual routine that week, it meant I was tired, sore and a tad hungover. Just in time for lunch, I made my way to the dining room where I was served an amazing prawn salad (and I immediately regretted the bacon and cheese roll I’d consumed on my two-hour drive to Pokolbin from Sydney).

A meet and greet ensued followed by a tour of the grounds and then a yoga class. By this point, 4pm on a Friday afternoon, I was either ready for wine time or bed. In the break before dinner I took an opportunity to retreat back to my gorgeous villa for quick lie down on the couch while catching up on the text messages I’d missed from my work colleagues out at a farewell lunch. It looked fun but… snoooooooze, I was wrecked.

I woke up just in time for Friday night drinks (the non-alcoholic variety) before dinner. Fruity concoctions awaited the guests so we sipped and mingled before the night’s meal was served. Another delicious dish was served, a first course of pumpkin soup followed by ocean trout with roma tomato and caper sauce and avocado mash.

A seminar followed for those interested and I was one of the first to put my hand up when I heard the topic – Sleep. In an hour-long workshop, we learned some methods of meditation and how to get ourselves of to sleep by using the breath and extending our inhales and exhales. Clearly there’s a lot more to it but I certainly needed to hit the sack straight after that.

The next morning I had every intention of heading to the 6am tai chi class. That is until my alarm went off at 5:45am. Snooze. Extended snooze. Alarm off. I rose at 8:45am, just in time for my deep tissue massage, followed by a facial in the Golden Door Day Spa. Needless to say, I blissed out!

Lunch on Saturday was a take on the traditional chicken caesar salad Golden Door-style and, of course, was scrumptious. But it was after lunch that I started to feel a little unwell. An ache had started to gently thump away at my temples and a feeling of exhaustion had washed over me – even though all I had done all day was get pampered. Weird, right? Well, apparently not when you are suffering the effects of caffeine withdrawal. As a medium-heavy coffee drinker (3-4 espressos a day), going without for more than 24 hours had made parts of my body mutiny. Resistance was futile but, with no caffeine to be found, I retreated to my villa – more precisely, the world’s most comfortable king bed – to sleep off my ‘coming down’.

I awoke just in time for dinner, chatted with my fellow guests at the dinner table and devoured the evening’s three-course meal that was completed with my favourite food of all-time, cheesecake (Golden Door-style once again). Yum! But the mallet in my head was banging away and a friendly staff member smuggled me some green tea and suggested I take it easy that night. So back to my room I went, where the beautiful turn-down service complete with the burning of amazing essential oils, prompted me to make use of the glorious bathtub. Now, I don’t have a bathtub in my tiny one-bedroom Sydney apartment so this was an absolute treat! I slipped into the tub, green tea in hand and iPhone for photographic evidence for friends and family that I was actually relaxing, and I had found my fave part of my Golden Door experience.

Golden Door Health Retreat, Golden Door, health retreat, health, wellbeing, day spa, pamper, nutrition

Refreshed and relaxed, headache subsiding, I got into bed ready for a night of restful sleep before packing up and heading back to the rat race the following morning, one thing came to mind… Two days was too short!

On Sunday morning, as I said my goodbyes to the wonderful staff and the lovely guests that I had met during my stay, I wished I had made more of my time there although, as one of the girls behind the desk had said to me, “Your experience was just what you needed”. Whether that be partaking in the sports, hikes, yoga, tai chi, spa treatements or like me, sleeping and eating well, I’m better for it.

And I’ve even cut down my coffee intake!

Thanks to the Golden Door Health Retreat Elysia

June 22, 2014

The Golden Door Resort Spa

An all over mask

The Golden Door Resort Spa at Cypress Lakes Resort invites you to experience our three day Lifestyle Programs. Ideal as an introduction to The Golden Door or as a follow up after your visit to the health retreat, these monthly programs offer a fully inclusive package with a specialty focus on areas of health and fitness.Based on the philosophy of the fabulous Golden Door Health Retreat in Queensland, these monthly programs offer a fully inclusive package with a specialty focus on a different area of health and fitness each month, including Women?s Health Essentials, Abs & Back by Pilates and Mind/Body Retreat.

Your day begins at sunrise with Tai Chi or stretching, followed by an activity such as yoga, a beautiful vineyards walk or deep water running. After a Golden Door breakfast of fresh fruits, cereals and porridge, there is a focus session on your program’s specialty area. Then it’s time to get moving with an activity, a relaxing break for lunch, more activity sessions and the afternoon can be spend indulging with treatments at the Spa or relaxing around the Resort. Dinner features

Head to toe pampering

cuisine and an evening group discussion at Pipette restaurant.This is your opportunity to take a few days from your busy lifestyle to relax, refresh, learn and indulge!

Cypress Lakes Resort is located just 90 minutes drive north of Sydney and offers a combination of luxurious villa accommodation and first class leisure facilities.

For more details, visit the Golden Door online at www.goldendoor.com.au or email goldendoor@onthenet.com.au or phone toll free 1800 816 906.

Enter here for a chance to win a 3 night luxury package to the Golden Door Resort Spa

Conditions of prize:

  • Subject to availability.
  • Prize only available on set dates. Women’s Health Essentials: Aug 25 – 28, Sep 22 – 25; Build a Better Back – July 21 – 24; Mind/Body Retreat – Oct 20 – 23; Water Works – Nov 17 – 20. Additional dates to be confirmed for future months.
  • Valid for 12 months

Rejuvenating water activities

date of prize draw and no extension is possible.

  • May not be combined with any other special offer or voucher and must be taken as shown on prize letter.
  • Includes 3 nights accommodation for 1 person Sunday to Wednesday in a luxury one bedroom villa, all gourmet vegetarian meals, all activities, focus sessions and notes, 2 pampering treatments (Swedish massage and a facial).
  • Winner is responsible for all travel costs to and from the Golden Door Resort Spa.
July 2, 2002