Some questions are so good, we can’t resist sharing them
Here we have it! Wellness retreat FAQs, updated weekly.
This is a round up of text questions, phone calls and emails from the previous week. It’s often me replying to queries, so I’m trying to build an automation portal where you can type in your q’s and it’ll pop up BOOM like that. Wellness retreat faqs super powered! I think that’d be really cool, and be a great time saver.
Once you’ve confirmed your weight loss camp, book the ferry (well) in advance!
Last minute pricing
Do you have a last-minute price for your weight loss camps?
Yes, we can keep your name on file to be forwarded to anyone who has to cancel their weight loss retreat. As they are permitted to resell their weight loss boot camp, you can pay them directly at a price negotiated between you. West Coast Fitness Vacations can then change the name on the reservation, up until the date noted on the policy.
Health retreat menu – what you eat at the weight loss camp
West Coast Fitness Vacations uses an in-house 21 day detailed nutrition plan called The Planet Friendly Diet.
This food plan is specifically written for binge eaters and those wanting maximum weight loss while following our arduous activity schedule. It’s approved by doctors and dieticians, written by a sports nutritionist with menus tested and co-created by several of our guests who are top chefs.
Highlights of The Planet Friendly Diet is that it’s all one portion meals, with zero waste. Everything is meticulously calculated to fit in your hotel fridge, with one grocery shop a week. Everything is of the season, and readily available with simple to follow instructions that are suitable for complete beginners.
Recipes are from around the world, prepared the West-Coast modern way. Using sustainable practices, guests prepare their own meals with provided ingredients, in the privacy of their kitchen, following easy-to-understand recipes. The plan is gluten, wheat, meat and dairy free with option to be also soy free. You select your own ingredients from our list.
How often are we eating at the wellness retreat?
At the wellness retreat we follow an intermittent fasting principal of 12:12. This means 12 hours when you are ‘fed’ and 12 hours when you’re feeding. You’ll be eating 3 delicious and nutritious meals per day during your weight loss camp. All food you will cook/assemble yourself with the provided ingredients and step-by-step recipes in your private kitchen. You’re in full control!
You have your own dining area where you can eat alone, or invite other guests to join you. Benefits of having you cook your own meals include learning to cook one-portion meals. The health retreat menu is gluten, wheat, dairy and meat free.
I’m terrified of binging ingredients, if I’m left alone with them. Help!
Perhaps the greatest stand-out feature of our weight loss camps and wellness retreats in B.C. is that it’s designed with this in mind. The food plan is set up with self-guided lessons in zero-waste cooking. You’ll feel very safe from yourself, and learn to trust yourself again around food.
While here, you’ll get into the pattern of using everything you buy, and controlling your eating patterns.
- Meticulously calculated and portioned ingredients.
- No leftovers or opportunity to binge, derail and stray from your 1200 calorie daily quota.
- Outside food is not permitted.
- Social pressure within the team to stay on track!
Each night you have the option to do your own thing for dinner, or dine with fellow guests. Often guests get together to alternate cooking duties and enjoy a good laugh in the evenings after an amazing day of workouts!
Are you suitable for ED recovery?
No, we’re not. This is not the place to recover from eating disorders but it’s an excellent setup for those who have a negative relationship with food. Like eating too much, eating emotionally, portion control and feelings associated with food.
We don’t accept guests at our weight loss camp who’ve been treated for bulimia or anorexia in the past two years. There are no therapists on staff, and our wellness retreat doesn’t offer counselling. It’s highly recommended to use your weight loss retreat in conjunction with health care professionals. West Coast Fitness Vacations does not have health care professionals on staff, of any kind.
Why do I need to bring a blender? Will a shaker work instead?
Great question. The wellness retreat food plan includes two delicious, full meal smoothies per day, otherwise known as Super Smoothies. There’s a mix of strawberries, blueberries, banana and spinach which sometimes doesn’t blend very well in the cheapo blenders.
West Coast Fitness Vacations has loads of blenders as we used to provide them to Whistler wellness retreat guests. As the Vancouver Island wellness retreat location is now for Canadians who are, for the most part, driving – it’s a good investment to bring your own high quality blender. I recommend the Vitamix, but that cost me around $800 I think so it’s not something to buy on a whim. There are cheaper ones, but you get what you pay for.
The blenders we provide at the weight loss camp are about $40 which is pretty entry level quality. I’m more than happy to lend you one if you’d like, of course.
Finding the best heart rate monitor
From previous weight loss camps, I’ve found that it’s best to not have a chest strap heart rate monitor. Wellness retreat guests are frequently feeling uncomfortable with this system. An Apple watch, or FitBit is the best. I personally use the Blaze, but will likely upgrade to Apple soon.
“From a fitness point of view, we’ve put it through the same rigorous testing as we do with all of the wearables on this list and it really impresses where a lot of wrist-based monitors falter. We’re talking high intensity interval training.If you don’t care about working in heart rate zones though, it’s well equipped for taking reliable resting heart rate readings throughout the day.” – Wareable.com
Yesterday I was ‘route-mapping’ to find the best hikes for our wellness retreats. Loved this trail!
Support after your wellness retreat
Is there an Alumni group from past wellness retreat guests to stay on track with you if we feel ourselves slipping? I’m sure life changes will have some tips along the way that may need encouragement and motivation?
No, there’s nothing formal setup for weight loss camp guests anymore. Previously we used facebook groups but West Coast Fitness Vacations is no longer on social media. The best way is to directly keep in touch with other guests that you meet while on the wellness retreat.
I’m always excited to hear from alumni guests, whether by text, phone or email, it’s always a pleasure. Previously I offered post-weight loss camp coaching packages but since COVID we’ve closed the office, and discontinued the office-staff positions. As I’m now managing all the operations myself, when I’m in the office my time is more limited than previously.
I’ll always be here for quick questions or trouble shoot sessions as you need. I’m still in touch from weight loss retreat guests that were clients in 2008!
What makes sense today might not be this way tomorrow. This is even more so this wild and crazy year of the pandemic! For this reason, West Coast Fitness Vacations has put together the best possible policy for upcoming wellness retreats in B.C.
If I’m injured or health (something happens) and can’t continue the wellness retreat, is there a refund?
No, however if you get the right travel insurance, they might.
My current annual travel trip-cancellation insurance (MEDOC) has a maximum coverage of $15,000 per trip. If I go home between each month, then I’d be covered for each month, so, the full amount. The insurance guy said that multiple months would be considered consecutive but if I ever had to argue, can you please provide an invoice for each month – just in case?
Yes, absolutely. We can issue you an invoice for your wellness retreat in B.C. edited to monthly. To anyone else reading this, please get in touch if you’d like the same for your upcoming weight loss camp protection.
I don’t really understand how there could be a “currency” balance … as there was no currency exchange. Is it instead the recipient’s portion of the wire transfer fee?
Our book keeper balances the accounts for all wellness retreats, usually on Wednesday. She calls any amount that is short a ‘currency balance’ as this is usually an oversight in the exchange rate calculation from the senders bank. It’s in the weight loss camp payment instructions that the full amount due must be received in our bank, so that includes recipient fees as part of the wire transfer fees.
Sometimes the discrepancies are as high as $35 depending on the bank, so she likes to zero balance all payments, regardless how trivial it seems to charge such a small amount. It does seem silly when looking at it for one person, but over many clients it can add up. She balances the accounts for all of her clients in this way, not just West Coast Fitness Vacations.
Our bank/credit union recipient fees are $10 and there may be additional transfer fees which your bank will know about. If you pay more than what is due, it will be refunded to your credit card on file.
Once your balance is paid, nothing further will be charged to your credit card. If the amount from your wire needs to be balanced, this will be charged to your credit card. We usually don’t get in touch for permission on this as the book keeper is a freelancer and we don’t have the administrative resources to have her email the customer as she only works usually an hour or two a week for us, once a week.
Digital detox, phone and headphone use
During scheduled hours, we ask that all guests refrain from using their cell phones and headphones. This is to keep the social vibe of the program and help you stay present with your workouts. It is also for wildlife safety and to make the guides jobs easier to keep people together.
There are truly gorgeous trails to explore, here in Parksville!
Sunrise Ridge construction, and how it’ll affect our weight loss camp
During 2020, the Resort will be undergoing construction to develop the new townhomes. These will be located between the main lodge and the waterfront villas. Please be assured that our staff and contractors will continue to work very hard to create minimum disruption to our valued guests.
I contacted them directly and here’s what they said:
“For construction, they plan to finish the first townhouse by the end of this year. In the last few days they have been working on the roof, so I imagine by October they will be mainly working on the interior. But as with construction it is almost impossible to nail down a timeline.
They won’t be starting the next townhouse until the first one sells so we won’t know if there will be any construction early next year until this one sells. The Developer tries to keep us updated and the information is shared with guests on our website here: https://www.sunriseridge.ca/construction-update/”
Should I start booking spa treatments for my health retreat?
Yes – it’s a great idea to plan well in advance of arriving at your wellness retreat for spa treatments. Massage is definitely a good idea, as you’ll be training hard! Call the Tigh Na Mara directly to book appointments. This is not included in your weight loss camp fees. View health spa menu at grottospa.com and call 250-248-1838 or email [email protected] to book your visit.
If you have Extended Medical benefits, it might be a great opportunity to use them while here. You may be like me with health insurance that gives Registered Massage Therapy, Physiotherapy, all the paramedicals basically. But I barely have time to use them. What better opportunity than when you’re on a wellness retreat!
I’ll soon be making appointments for myself and will share the best places with weight loss camp guests. These will probably be posted as a document in the Resource Room so you can print it out and make appointments.
Why is there no meat? I’ve got zero desire to be vegetarian.
Love your weight loss camps but am concerned about when I get back home (as we are meat eaters) and how this will affect my success in the long term. Are there any carnivores in your groups? Do you teach your groups how to adapt?
Yes, absolutely – nearly all of our guests are meat eaters in their normal life at home. The weight loss camp is full of challenges, and this is one of them I think for some, but it’s also a worthwhile challenge to try, even if for a month.
The meal plan is carefully designed for those who are used to meat, using meaty like ingredients wherever possible. Yes, we encourage guests to reintroduce meat into their meal plans at home after their time with us. Sometimes our guests are eating up to 12x too much meat for their bodies to digest. Going without meat really jump-starts a powerful change in their lives. No, I wouldn’t say that I teach groups to adapt back except for a few recommendations but nothing formal.
Top Bridge trails near our weight loss camp lodging. Beautiful.
Would you consider this a “medical weight loss retreat?”
No, probably not. We don’t treat, diagnose, or advise on medical topics and are not trained, medical professionals. However, if you’re asking whether the physical activity might be suitable for the restrictions described, possibly. If this is the case, let’s hop on a call and chat more about what her restrictions are in regards to exercise, and the precautions recommended by her doctor.
For health concerns, it’s often helpful to know in advance some information (by email) in case research or extra planning is required for the call. We welcome women from all stages of modifications, however, due to restrictions with registration being limited to 4 guests per session, it’s important to place them in a session that has other guests of compatible pace.
What does a regular day look like at your weight loss camp in B.C?
We’ve added information to the website – it might not have been there when you were last on the site. Here is the direct link.
I’m just wondering why some weight loss camp months are $10,000 and some months are close to $13,000? I had sort of made up my mind on the 10,000 per month rate but it seems there’s only one other slot like that that isn’t sold out.
Yes, there were only a couple of spots for that pricing available as the ‘pioneer rates’ of launching a new weight loss camp. These came with restrictions of special pricing being offered, such as full payment being due within 7 days of deposit. As our wellness retreats will be in the groove with business operations by the third month, rates will increase to a more profitable bracket.
Am I fit enough to join one of your health retreat programs?
I’m 58 and have limited mobility. Do you have any wellness retreats for me?
This was a great question and definitely worth sharing on our wellness retreat faqs. Sarah answered it really well:
“Absolutely, we welcome those with limited mobility, as long as it can maintain group pace. Depending on your restriction, we place you in the best group based on compatibility of fitness, pace and comfort. Can you share a little more about your restrictions please?
How far can you walk comfortably, what is your starting point – weight, height and activity level, what is the pain level if any, what might restrict you in our program. Alternatively you can call the office to speak with the fitness director.”
More questions coming soon!