• Katie Heyes

My July Journey: Day 10 - A Day At The Spa

We all need a day of pampering every now and again. And health spas are the perfect opportunity to escape the busy world around you and instead indulge in total relaxation. Whether it be wanting to disconnect from the technological realm we now live in, wanting to spend some quality time with loved ones or you may just want to get on a poolside lounger and switch off for a good hour or so, spas are the perfect way to make you calm, chilled out and relaxed.

With so many benefits for both mind and body, you should never feel guilty for treating yourself to a treatment or two. And that’s exactly what I did with my recent trip the Formby Hall Golf Resort and Spa. After all the hours spent hunched over a desk, labouring over revision notes and flashcards and countless restless nights’ sleeps, my friend and I felt this was well and truly deserved. And let me tell you, it was heaven!

We opted for a Summer Zen Spa day which included a welcome drink, half an hour treatment, lunch in the bistro and of course full access to the classic Spa facilities like the pool, steam rooms, saunas, Jacuzzi, heated lounges and tranquillity suites. Yet with all that, time literally flew by!

When we arrived, we were greeted by with a myriad of shining faces! Every member of staff was extremely kind and welcoming, giving us a tour of all the options available to us and recommendations best suited to our own interests. We hadn’t even used anything yet and already we felt so chilled with them doing everything they could to ensure that we got the most out of our visit.

So after changing into robes so big we looked like two Jedis, where to first? Thermal Heaven! The steam rooms and saunas are great for skin and respiratory conditions and I was shocked by how immediate the effects were! The humidity given off from the steam is providing hydration to the top surface layers, helping to clear skin impurities and the sauna rooms help to open your airways soothing asthma, coughs and colds. So if you’re ever feeling under the weather or catching the sniffles, a spa day may be perfect for you! This year in particular, my skin has gotten a lot worse mainly due to me always opting for that coke in the vending machine rather than sticking to water, but also partly due to stress. But after leaving that room, I immediately felt like my skin was glowing. It’s not a quick fix by any means, but you’ll definitely feel cleansed and refreshed after popping in for a quick few minutes.

Next was the shoulder neck and scalp massage. Considering I almost fell asleep three times, I think it’s safe to say that this was quite the immersing spa experience. A massage releases serotonin so for that brief period of time you feel liberated from all the burdens of a hectic lifestyle where you can truly focus on the here and now. The scalp massage was especially therapeutic for me! You don’t realise just how much stress and tension you’re carrying around all over your body by trying to suppress your emotions until you’re lying there horizontal on the massage bed. Head massages have been proven to decrease the frequency of headaches when done correctly and after being susceptible to them frequently during exam season, a good massage was the perfect way for me to take away aches and pains whether they be physically or mentally.

After grabbing lunch in the bistro, we spent the last few hours by the pool and Jacuzzi which was by far my favourite part of the whole experience. Now anyone who knows me knows that sports are not my forte…at all! But the one exception was always swimming. I remember learning to swim from a very early age and loved every second of it. Whenever we went I’d just spend hours in the pool pretending I was a mermaid and I always felt so free even when I started taking it more professionally in swimming galas and completing all the stages. However, as soon as high school started I began to lose that drive I once had for it, to the point where I stopped going completely. So this was the first time I’ve been in a pool in ages. But today brought it all back to me. I was in a state of absolute bliss, not even for doing countless lengths but even just staying there floating for a bit, made me realise how much I loved it as a child and actually how beneficial it is for boosting my spirit. To the point where I’ve made a decision to take it back up again. Whilst it won’t be as regularly as it used to be by any means, it was such a great form of stress relief at the time and I can’t wait to relive that feeling over and over again.

So all in all, yesterday was easily one of the most refreshing and relaxing experiences I’ve had in a long time. And let me tell you it’s been well overdue! Whilst some of the prices mean that it’s not something you can do all time, I’d still recommend it! Even if it’s only annually, treating yourself to a nice little day of pampering is a great form of self-care as well as bringing many short and long-term mental and physical health benefits. So if you’re ever feeling a bit under the weather, wanting a bit of family and friend bonding time or even just needing a little escape from a busy lifestyle, try a spa day! Trust me you won’t regret it!

- Katie x

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