Saturday, July 3, 2010


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Hopefully you take vacation every year, we ALL need a vacation!

Every February my family goes to the same little hotel in Mexico, called Hacienda Eden. We have been going here for 15 years! We get the same room every single time, there are only 14 anyway.

We fly into Zihuatanejo, pick up our rental car and drive PAST the big resort called Ixtapa (whew! Thank goodness!) and keep driving north for 45 minutes, turn down a long windy road to the beach town of only 300 people called Troncones, and then take a dirt road another 2 miles to Eden.

The first thing we do is kick off our shoes, get a big margarita and sit on the beach and watch the sun set.

We will see many of the same people every year, we know their names, where they live, what books they like, we have a great time catching up. Our son has grown up there with the owner's children too and Cooper (my son) feels right at home and comfortable.

Many of us, myself included who are "fitness junkies" have a hard time relaxing and letting go during vacation. I even feel guilty if I am indulging in cocktails, tacos, lobster, deep fried prawns, it's all there and it's all delicious.

It is important to relax though, your body can certainly use the rest and a week won't kill you if you deviate from your schedule.

I do exercise, but nothing like I do at home. My routine is usually up at dawn before anyone else, (except the chef, he is up and heading out to surf when I get up), I then slip on my swimsuit and run up and down the 1/2 mile long beach a few times, and I might even skip or hop some in the sand too.

I do crunches, push ups and pull ups on a tree. I used to lift rocks till I saw dogs peeing on them.... You can find lots of different body weight exercise to do if you put your mind to it, and as long as you do a little, you might be able to relax the rest of the time. I must admit that I am done when everyone else just starts to rise, then I lay on a chaise lounge the entire reminder of the day, reading.

I will have cocktails, and I allow myself 2 pina coladas (they are really, really fattening)...but I think I lose count of the margaritas to be honest.

I try to eat healthy most of the time but I do eat some sinfully bad dishes, Camarones Empanizados dipped in mayo are my absolute favorite, and Dona Nica down the dirt road knows it and makes them quickly just for me!

I usually schedule a couple massages while I am there, Annie lives in the U.S. part of the year, and in Mexico the other part, she and her husband run a surfing school there. I email Annie ahead of time and schedule one the day after my arrival, and the other the day prior to my departure. There is really nothing as wonderful as a 90 minute massage on your patio, with a breeze blowing in an 87 degree heat.

This past year Annie loaned me her kettlebell, here I am walking down her driveway after picking it up to take back to my room.

Don't beat yourself up and do enjoy yourself, vacation is not fun if you are on a strict diet! Remember you can splurge a little, you don't have to blow the whole thing, reward yourself for all of the good work you do most of the time, be kind to yourself.

Balance, it is necessary and possible, just use our imagination.