I did it…. I reached my 3rd reward threshold! Well, slightly early, but I made it the -50 lb reward, as opposed to the ONEderland reward.
It was truly the most amazing reward, and the most fabulous long weekend (Friday-Monday.)
POOL-TIME: The hotel has exquisite service, which I think is one of my favorite parts of visiting the Intercontinental Montelucia. We spent a ton of time at the pool, and that was our primary activity (as usual). For me, spending some time in the sun and additional time under one of those beautiful red umbrellas is amazing.
Wearing a bathing suit this weekend wasn’t so bad!!! There, I said it! Almost 50 lbs down, I felt good about the way I looked in my suit. Cute coverups and matching flip flops made it even better, but to lay in the sun in public and feel good about how I looked and how far I’ve come was a GREAT feeling.
SPA-TIME: We spent the majority of our time at the Joya Spa – inside the spa, and at the gorgeous rooftop pool. The rooftop pool was perhaps our greatest find! So quiet and the atmosphere/menu was TEN TIMES better than the other pools. I also found my favorite new cocktail at the Joya Spa pool – Vodka, Cranberry, Peach Schnapps, Splash of OJ, Splash of Sprite. They call it “Vitamin C” and I love it! Yum-O!
We also spent several hours inside of the spa. I treated myself to a 75-minute hot stone massage. Angela, my masseuse, was phenomenal… and gave me one of the best massages I’ve ever had! We also decided to try out Joya’s Blowout Bar! Blowout bars seem to be showing up all over the country… and we decided to try it! The glass of champagne was also a nice touch, and the gorgeously bouncy hair I had afterward was fabulous!
WORKING OUT: Something else that’s helping… I feel like my friends are getting healthier, too! I traveled with a dear friend of mine who was prepping for the Music City Marathon in Nashville, TN. Every morning, she would head out for a 10K run or 7K walk. So, while Donna headed out for a huge run, I would go to the fitness room and work out on the machines. The treadmill, the elliptical, and the bike became my friends. I did 45 minutes of working out daily while I was there, which is awesome. I have never been one to work out on vacation… so this was kind of a big deal. And, it was nice to counteract some of the drinks and whatnot I was taking in that I wasn’t used to.
FOOD: Last time I was at Montelucia, we partook in their amazing breakfast buffet every morning. Bacon, pancakes, breakfast potatoes… Not this time! I had JC for breakfast every day! I brought my trusty Complete Start Cereal. I also brought Pria Bars and some Stretch Island Fruit Leather. This helped quite a bit with snacking and the cereal got my day started right!
I really feel that spa’s might be the place to go if you are trying to lose weight! The restaurants rocked, with tons of HEALTHY options! And… the lunch menu at the pool had nutritional information listed (calorie/fat/etc).
Another example of great choices: They had a plate of frozen grapes and another option for watermelon, pineapple, or cantelope! What great snacks!
MARCELLINO’S: There was one night that I completely jumped off program. There’s an AMAZING Italian restaurant (or should I say ristorante) in Old Scottsdale that we looooooove. We had to go there one night. I was so excited to have decadent homemade pasta. There is really nothing like Marcellino’s Ristorante. I’ve eaten a lot of italian in my life, and it’s my ultimate favorite! They have this Cacio de Pepe that’s described as “Cracked pepper and Romano cheese infused pasta with a hearty ragu of sautéed pancetta, caramelized onion and tomato” Heaven on a plate! Interestingly, it was equally delicious as the last time I had it, but I ate about 1/2 of what I finished last time. I was miserably full after eating 1/2 of the plate of pasta. And, I felt almost sick afterward (sigh.) Keep in mind, I loooooooved every bite, but I think it was my mind processing the calories I had taken in and panicking and my stomach reacting to pancetta and cheese, which I have not eaten for months!
READING: I also spent some time reading under my red umbrella at Montelucia. I’ve been hooked on the Emily Giffin books lately after reading Something Borrowed. I tore through her latest book Heart of the Matter at the pool on Sunday. If you haven’t read her novels, I recommend giving them a shot. She’s fantastic at creating characters you can relate to.
If you haven’t figured out a rewards program for your weight loss, I definitely recommend it. I’ve never enjoyed a trip like this one because it was celebrating something I’d achieved and worked so hard to attain!
Ahhhh…. Montelucia. Such a wonderful weekend, I miss you already. We’ve made plans to visit again next April, and I seriously can’t wait. And, I will be at goal by that point!!