How a Weekend Away Can Help Create Lifelong Habits

How a Weekend Away Can Help Create Lifelong Habits
At Red Mountain Resort in Southern Utah, you can relax, recharge, and learn good habits to take back home.

In our overscheduled, ultra-stressed lives, it’s all too easy to get caught up in the daily grind of work, family, and friends—and forget to take care of ourselves. When we’re in need of some much-needed rest and recovery, heading for a wellness destination like Southern Utah’s Red Mountain Resort is just the solution. But there’s a bonus to all that relaxation: While you’re soaking up some well-deserved downtime, enjoying the outdoors, and savoring delicious, healthy cuisine, you’re also laying the groundwork for wellness habits that you can incorporate into your daily life. Here’s how a relaxing weekend away can pull double duty to creating a healthier lifestyle overall, with pro tips from resort staff.

1. Morning Walks

At Red Mountain Resort, each day kicks off with a hike around the stunning landscape that gives the resort its name. And while you’ll certainly be burning some calories, this morning walk ritual focuses more on the importance of just getting moving. “You don’t necessarily have to count steps to have a wellness lifestyle,” says Red Mountain general manager Tracey Welsh.

At Red Mountain Resort, there are a variety of options depending on your fitness level (or mood): You can challenge yourself with uphill climbs or keep walks relaxed with a stroll around the resort’s garden. Getting into the habit at home can be as simple as going around the block before you take your morning shower or taking your pup to the park. However you do it, getting your day off on an active note is always a good way to start.

2. Make Time for Play

Kayak or stand-up paddleboard at one of the two reservoirs near Red Mountain Resort.

Life can feel pretty serious—and stressful—at times. But at Red Mountain Resort, incorporating play is an important part of the experience. One way the resort excels at this is by offering a variety of activities, so that guests can lose themselves in the fun and challenge of learning a new skill—or discovering a new passion. Welsh recommends trying a slacklining class to perfect your balance or a Drums Alive class, during which you get the endorphins going with a pair of drumsticks and your inner rhythm. You can also take ukulele classes with the resort’s music therapist; if you love it, you can even check out a ukulele to strum for the rest of your stay. “We all have our routines that we feel comfortable with,” Welsh says. “But you need to keep your brain active by learning new things.”

At home, incorporating play can be just as much fun. Try a new fitness class, chase your kids around the playground, or sign up for a first-timer’s painting or pottery class. Whatever you do, be sure to find time for fun and playfulness—especially when life’s stressors seem overwhelming.

3. Incorporate Mindful Eating

Red Mountain Resort is well known in the industry for its delicious and healthy meals. Each stay includes three balanced meals a day, with buffet options at breakfast and lunch and a diverse menu paired with a salad bar at dinner. While calorie counts are posted, you won’t find a deprivation mindset at the resort.

And while your daily meals at home aren’t likely to come with calorie counts (or, sadly, a buffet option), your Red Mountain experience can inspire you to keep up the healthy habits. One easy way to incorporate a more mindful approach to your meals is simply being aware of what you’re eating—and, more importantly, how it makes you feel. “Ask yourself, ‘Was it the best choice I could’ve made?” Welsh says. “‘Did it make me feel energized? Slow? Perky?’ There are so many things out of your control, and one thing in your control is what you put in your body.”

4. Develop Rituals for Meditation and Relaxation

Meditation can provide clarity and stress relief in busy lives.

Subpar sleep and excessive stress can take a toll on your health, and a weekend (or longer!) spent unplugging at a destination like Red Mountain Resort is a wonderful way to recharge and start developing new habits to bring back home. Treat yourself to a massage (the popular Sleep Tonic Massage is highly recommended), spend time walking the meditative labyrinth, or attend a meditation class to learn strategies on how to make it a daily practice.

And when you’re back at home dealing with the demands of daily life, remember that you don’t have to dedicate hours to a meditation practice or drop lots of cash on weekly massages. “Whether it is a mantra you repeat or just setting aside time to relax, give yourself permission to be still and quiet and absorb what’s going on around you,” Welsh says. “The world is going to go on even if you don’t answer your emails for 15 minutes.”

You can also bring these practices into your sleep space by developing a calming nighttime routine. Spritz your sheets with lavender, kick your electronic devices out of your bed, and try a meditation routine before drifting off. Be consistent in your routine—whether you’re traveling or at home—to promote a restful, stable sleep schedule.

5. Spend Time Outdoors

One of the easiest Red Mountain Resort habits to add to your daily life is spending time outside. Whether you live in a big city or out in the country, make a point to get outside at least once a day, whether that means strolling through a local park or hiking a local trail. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, the experience of being closer to nature is proven to have multiple health benefits.

In addition, during your Red Mountain stay, take advantage of the chance to try a wide variety of outdoor offerings to discover new passions. “Listen to the sounds of nature, or see reptiles and lava rock,” Welsh says. “Whatever brings you joy outdoors, you should do it. It’s time well spent.”

After visiting Red Mountain Resort, you’ll find that incorporating healthy habits doesn’t have to be drudgery. It can instead be an empowering way to take control of your own health and wellness—and an excellent reason to plan another trip to Red Mountain Resort to get inspired all over again.

Written by Jenny Willden for Matcha in partnership with Red Mountain Resort.