Many of us start the New Year with a promise to live healthier, more active lives (usually after realising how much weight we gained over the holiday season). But most of us quickly forget about those resolutions as the New Year rolls on and we return to the hectic pace of our normal lives.

This year, consider giving yourself a fighting chance at meeting your New Year’s goals by going on a fitness retreat. It’s not just a good way to justify a vacation early in the year – if the lifestyle changes you make during your healthy holiday stick, you can reap the weight loss rewards the rest of the year, and hopefully the rest of your life.

We have selected six resorts and retreats around Asia that promise to help transform your body and your habits to get you on the road to healthy living. At these exercise escapes, you’ll be given expert guidance, healthy foods and plenty of opportunities to shed those holiday love handles.


The Setting
One of the most famous destination spas in the world, Chiva-Som is located in the royal city of Hua Hin on the Gulf of Thailand, 185 kilometres south of Bangkok. The beachfront health resort is situated on a secluded and serene seven-acre estate filled with lush tropical gardens and luxurious accommodation comprising 58 well-appointed rooms including traditional Thai Pavillions and Ocean View rooms with spectacular views of the Gulf.

Of course, you don’t come to Chiva-Som to laze about in their comfy rooms. Guests come to the renowned resort with specific goals in mind and Chiva-Som has a wide variety of programmes and facilities to help them achieve those goals. In addition to 70 treatment rooms, the resort facilities include a kinesis studio, gym, watsu pool, floatation pool, large outdoor swimming pool, bathing pavilion with kneipp bath, sauna, steam, jacuzzi and indoor swimming pool.

Fitness Retreat
The Fitness Retreat programme at Chiva-Som is designed to inspire, motivate and educate guests who are looking to get in shape while helping them achieve their long-term fitness goals. The retreat combines time-proven training methods with the latest fitness concepts, research and technology to drive you towards optimal physical performance.

Chiva-Som’s experienced trainers will first take your aims, health history and lifestyle into account as they develop a personalised fitness programme for you, including muscle toning, core stability, endurance training, joint mobilisation, and stretching. In addition to the health and wellness consultation, a complimentary physical analysis and skin consultation are available if required.

The programme won’t just keep you in the gym –  to optimise your physical conditioning, you will be have a wide variety of exercise techniques to choose from, such as Pilates, boot camp, as well as their numerous daily classes.

The Fitness Retreat programmes at Chia-Som come in packages ranging from five to 14 nights (although longer programmes can be arranged) and each one includes, on top of the daily fitness activities (up to 8 classes per day), accommodations, three healthy spa cuisine meals per day, a selection of daily massages and deep tissue massage as well as a variety of personal training sessions. Longer packages include nutrition consultations and healthy cooking classes. At the end of the programme, you can get a body measurement follow up to see how much progress you’ve made.

Weight Management
If your fitness focus is on shedding kilos, then you might want to opt for Chiva-Som’s Weight Management programme. On this retreat, participants work closely with the resort’s personal trainers and nutritionists to correct their lifestyle habits. The goal is to find guest’s optimal level of activity and monitor their dietary patterns to help them lose weight in a healthy and sustainable way. Each programme is personally tailored to match the ability and lifestyle goals of each participant.

While they admit that achieving your ideal weight may take longer than the length of your stay, the idea is that guests leave with a clear idea of the road ahead. As such, a great deal of focus is placed on education and nutrition. Chiva-Som’s integrative approach offers many additional services to improve your health conditions, ranging from hormonal blood testing to physiotherapy and a host of holistic and spa therapies.

Like the Fitness Retreat, the Weight Management programme comes in packages ranging from five to 14 days and includes accommodations, healthy spa meals, physical and body composition analyses, nutrition consultations, personal training sessions and access to all fitness classes and daily massages.

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