I recently returned from four fabulous days at Hilton Head Health (H3), a wellness spa and weight loss retreat in beautiful Hilton Head Island, S.C. I was invited there as part of a bloggers’ weekend to sample the programs and facilities, and had such a wonderful time I hardly know where to begin!
First, a bit about the resort. Hilton Head Health is located within Shipyard Plantation, an 800-acre gated resort and residential community. The resort has a friendly, relaxed vibe throughout, and a helpful, caring staff.
It is a short drive or bike ride to the beach or marina. An H3 van transports guests to the morning beach walk, beach yoga, kayaking and paddle boarding activities. H3 has bike rentals available, and I enjoyed cycling over to the beach. There are bike and walking paths throughout the area.
I stayed in a lovely 2-bedroom villa with another blogger, Erin Wolfe, who reviews spas on her site, EnlightenedSpaReview.com. We hit it off right away, and it was so much fun doing the program with her!
H3 offers two tracks: Lose Well, and Live Well. Lose Well is a 4+ week program that features an assigned coach, and is the most personalized and intensive plan for significant weight loss. Live Well is a weekly, structured weight loss program to help jump-start weight loss, develop new nutrition and fitness habits, and manage stress.
Most guests I met were staying from two weeks to a month. There were some couples, but most people were there by themselves. If you do go by yourself, fear not — you will make new friends fast. Everyone I met was friendly and welcoming. It’s the type of place where you can walk into the restaurant and feel completely free to sit next to anyone. I met people from around the country, and several were return guests who have enjoyed coming back to H3 through the years.
All meals and snacks are included in the program. Chef-prepared, calorie-controlled meals are served in the on-site restaurant, and you choose from the menu. You really can’t go wrong with the menu — everything I tried was delicious! The portions are a bit smaller than with traditional restaurants, but it didn’t take long for me to become accustomed to this. I actually became less hungry (which I really noticed once I arrived home). A help-yourself healthy snack bar is adjacent and open throughout the day, as is a coffee and tea station.
A comprehensive itinerary of fitness classes and educational workshops is offered each day, often starting with a morning beach walk. There tend to be several things going on at once, and it’s all so great that it can be hard to choose!
Indoor fitness classes include Treading (a cardio workout with treadmills), Resistance Band Training, Fitball Strength, Pilates, Yoga, Stretching, Core Strength, Ultra Circuit, Dance Fit, Zumba, Boxing Circuit, Cardio Boxing, Body Sculpting, Butts & Guts, Tone & Stretch, and more. Plus, fully-equipped exercise rooms are open whenever you want to go workout with machines, TRX, or free weights.
There are a number of pool fitness classes offered, including Aqua Barre, Water Fitness, Aqua Tabata, Nautical Noodle, Aqua Resistance Training, Strength and Conditioning in the Pool, Deep Water Conditioning, Aqua Boxing, Water Aerobics, Aqua Zumba, and Yoga in the Pool. The pool and hot tub are also open in between classes for your enjoyment.
In addition, there are a few external outings planned during the week, such as going to the movies, and an island historical tour.
All activities are voluntary, so you can pick and choose what appeals to you. I highly recommend trying some new things — even if you aren’t sure you can do them. You never know until you try!
That’s how I felt about stand-up paddle boarding. I was a bit intimidated beforehand, just wasn’t sure if I’d be able to do that. And to my surprise, I pretty much nailed it…thanks, of course, to the excellent and patient instructor. All of us in the class — including a woman in her 70s — were able to do it and we all had a blast! I’m so glad I didn’t let my nervousness stop me from trying.
The week wasn’t all exercise, though. One of the best parts of the program is the educational component, where experts share their knowledge on such topics as Habits of Successful Weight Managers, Mindful Eating, Meditation, Building a Better Body, Nutrition, Mastering Motivation, Maximizing Metabolism, Portion Control, Meal Planning, Staying on Track, Emotional Health, and more.
Oh, and let’s not forget the interactive cooking classes — where you receive lessons from a professional chef, get to make a few dishes of your own, and best of all, eat them! Yum!
My last scheduled activity at H3 was a visit to their on-site Indigo Spa for a massage. The spa has a full menu of offerings, which you can learn more about here. The massage was heavenly, and the perfect way to end a week of fitness activities!
I arrived home leaner, stronger, and less hungry, and with awesome memories to treasure. I can’t wait to go back!
If you’re looking for personalized assistance to jump-start your weight loss on the right track; or if you just want a healthy, fun vacation to recharge, I definitely recommend the wonderful Hilton Head Health!
Disclaimer: My stay was provided complimentary by Hilton Head Health. Regardless, this review reflects my honest opinion.
©Michelle Rogers, Inc.