RE­TREAT TO LA­BOR DAY

Athleisure - - Athleisure Beauty -

If you're like us, you're al­ways think­ing of how to op­ti­mize your work­out - en­ter the re­treat. Th­ese are im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ences that al­low you to se­lect a work­out of in­ter­est that takes place at a des­ti­na­tion that be­comes the ul­ti­mate fit­ness va­ca­tion as well as a way to bond with fel­low en­thu­si­asts.

We chat­ted with the co-founders of lux­eFIT, a re­treat that in­cor­po­rates fit­ness, food and travel to cre­ate a work­out ex­pe­ri­ence within your va­ca­tion. We also talked with celebrity trainer, JJ Dancer who is part­ner­ing with the provider for their St. Martin re­treat Sept 2nd - 6th.

ATH­LEISURE MAG: Tell us about Lux­eFit and a lit­tle about the Co-Founders who cre­ated it.

LUX­EFIT: We (Loren Ann Mayo and Holly Mor­ris) founded lux­eFIT out of a shared de­sire to com­bine our pas­sions for fit­ness, food, travel and forg­ing new friend­ships. Our goal is sim­ple: to bring to­gether peo­ple with like-minded in­ter­ests and help them ex­pe­ri­ence the va­ca­tion of a life­time filled with last­ing mem­o­ries.

LOREN ANN MAYO: I grew up in Florida liv­ing a fit, healthy and ac­tive life­style in and around the beau­ti­ful Gulf of Mex­ico and its spec­tac­u­lar beaches. I en­joy bal­anc­ing my sched­ule with a wide range of ac­tiv­i­ties in­clud­ing hot yoga, horse­back rid­ing, hik­ing, strength train­ing, run­ning and pad­dle board­ing. One of my fa­vorite pas­times is strolling through the farmer's mar­ket, gath­er­ing up ev­ery de­li­cious fruit and veg­gie I can get my hands on, and then spend­ing hours in the kitchen con­coct­ing dishes for fam­ily and friends.

My ca­reer is deeply rooted in jour­nal­ism, work­ing as a re­porter, pho­tog­ra­pher and colum­nist for one of Florida's top week­lies and mag­a­zines. Even­tu­ally, I trans­ferred my skills to mar­ket­ing, and dis­cov­ered I had much more time on my my hands for my two of my big­gest pas­sions — trav­el­ing and fit­ness — and de­vel­oped an even big­ger crav­ing for cui­sine na­tive to the coun­tries I vis­ited. Com­bin­ing those pas­sions and start­ing my own busi­ness seemed like the per­fect ca­reer, so here I am bring­ing you the best ad­ven­ture va­ca­tions on the planet.

HOLLY MOR­RIS: From a young age, I knew that travel and hos­pi­tal­ity were a pas­sion of mine. Af­ter grad­u­at­ing from the Univer­sity of Cen­tral Florida with a de­gree in Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment, I left Or­lando, FL to work on a cruise ship. I spent more than two years trav­el­ing the world and learn­ing about what makes a great va­ca­tion. I vis­ited some of the most ex­otic and beau­ti­ful places on earth dur­ing my time on­board and met in­ter­est­ing and amaz­ing peo­ple from all over the world.

Af­ter re­turn­ing to “dry land,” I de­cided to pur­sue a ca­reer in Hu­man Re­sources, even­tu­ally set­tling in New York City. While liv­ing in New York, I dis­cov­ered my pas­sion for fit­ness, join­ing many dif­fer­ent gyms over the years. Ul­ti­mately, I re­al­ized I wanted to pur­sue a ca­reer that com­bined my love of fit­ness and travel with my busi­ness and hos­pi­tal­ity ex­per­tise.

AM: Why are re­treats that fo­cus on fit­ness such an im­por­tant part to in­cor­po­rate into the travel ex­pe­ri­ence?

LAM: Peo­ple are no longer look­ing for just a va­ca­tion — they’re look­ing for a mean­ing­ful travel ex­pe­ri­ence that in­te­grates healthy habits and well­be­ing. Fit­ness re­treats are a way to un­plug, es­cape your day-to-day, dis­cover new ad­ven­tures and recharge your body, mind and soul in a beau­ti­ful sur­round­ing with like­minded com­pany.

AM: How are Lux­eFit re­treats dif­fer­ent than other re­treats that one can sign up for?

HM: Lux­eFIT brings to­gether fit­ness, nu­tri­tion, ad­ven­ture and the op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore new and ex­cit­ing des­ti­na­tions world­wide. We be­lieve there are sev­eral fac­tors that set us a part from other re­treats:

• We are truly an all-in­clu­sive lux­ury get­away where ev­ery­thing is 5-Star: a pri­vate es­tate where we are the only guests; a full staff to cater to our needs and make sure we have a great time; a pri­vate chef who cre­ates lo­cally in­spired, healthy and de­li­cious meals that com­ple­ment our work­outs and other phys­i­cal ac­tiv­i­ties and caters to any di­etary re­stric­tions our guests might have; an op­por­tu­nity to dine at some of the finest restau­rants in the area.

• We are co-ed for all fit­ness lev­els. Our train­ers are hand-se­lected fit­ness ex­perts and can mod­ify their work­outs to be chal­leng­ing for ev­ery­one, from those who do not ex­er­cise to fit­ness en­thu­si­asts and those who are pro­fes­sional ath­letes.

• We of­fer a com­bi­na­tion of HIIT work­outs, yoga, surf­ing, pad­dle board­ing, hik­ing and more. We aim to keep our work­outs chal­leng­ing, fun and var­ied so that they ap­peal to ev­ery­one.

• We in­clude plenty of ex­cur­sions that guests would want to ex­pe­ri­ence on any va­ca­tion, from snor­kel­ing with sea tur­tles in Bar­ba­dos, to hik­ing Pic Par­adis in St. Martin, to ex­plor­ing an ac­tive vol­cano in Costa Rica. Each lo­ca­tion is care­fully se­lected to of­fer guests an op­por­tu­nity to ex­pe­ri­ence a lux­u­ri­ous and ad­ven­tur­ous va­ca­tion, make new friends with sim­i­lar in­ter­ests and re­main fit and ac­tive dur­ing their trav­els.

• Our guests don’t have to worry about a thing! From the mo­ment our guests ar­rive to the time they de­part, we take care of ev­ery­thing. All they need to do is sit back, re­lax and en­joy their va­ca­tion. AM: How did the part­ner­ship be­tween you and JJ Dancer come about?

LUX­EFIT: JJ em­bod­ies ev­ery­thing that lux­eFIT stands for. She is a strong, healthy, en­thu­si­as­tic in­di­vid­ual who has made it her mis­sion to spread her pas­sion for fit­ness around the globe — and we’re ex­cited to be part of that. JJ's smile and spirit are con­ta­gious and her back­ground speaks for it­self. We hon­estly fell in love with JJ the mo­ment we saw her work­out videos. Plus, who doesn’t love danc­ing? :)

AM: Out­side of this re­treat in St Martin, are there other re­treats that in­ter­ested fit­ness en­thu­si­asts can sign up for?

LUX­EFIT: Our 2018 list as of to­day con­tains Bali, Thai­land, Croa­tia, Costa Rica, Mar­tinique, An­tigua, Puerto Val­larta and Bar­ba­dos. We don’t yet have a idea which months we’ll hold th­ese re­treats, as we’ll be re­search­ing weather, vil­las, etc. Th­ese ten­ta­tive 2018 lo­ca­tions will be up on our web­site soon and open for book­ing.

ATLEISUREMAG: Tell us about your back­ground in terms of how you got into fit­ness.

JJ DANCER: I've been a pro­fes­sional dancer since the age of 8. In col­lege, I was the cap­tain of the NBA Washington Wiz­ards Dance Team and I was re­quired to lose weight. That's when I found the gym and fell in love. Years later, af­ter danc­ing and tour­ing with artists such as Bey­once, Kanye West and Pit­bull and danc­ing in movies, com­mer­cials and prime time tele­vi­sion, I found my­self ea­ger to do more with fit­ness. I was in­spired to bring my many years of pro­fes­sional dance to­gether with my love for fit­ness and cre­ate a pro­gram that is just as much fun as it is ef­fec­tive!

AM: As a Celebrity Trainer, can you share some of your clients with us?

JJD: My celebrity clien­tele (past and present) in­clude Nicole Scherzinger, Jenna De­wan-Ta­tum, Jes­sica Alba, Olivia Munn, John Sal­ley, and more!

AM: If we're work­ing out with JJ Dancer what can we ex­pect from the Ban­gin' Body Boot­camp?

JJD: JJ's Ban­gin' Body Boot­camp is a fun and sweaty hip-hop dance party, folowed by creative and ef­fec­tive mus­cle con­di­tion­ing- us­ing re­sis­tance bands, light weights, kick­box­ing, ply­o­met­rics and mat work. My classes are all about hard work, sweat and FUN, set to great mu­sic and in­sane en­ergy! Ban­gin' Body Boot­camp is guar­an­teed to change your body, your mind, and leave you feel­ing em­pow­ered and un­stop­pable!

AM: What's your style when you're work­ing out ver­sus your per­sonal style when you're go­ing out for brunch?

JJD: My style is al­ways fun and col­or­ful, whether I'm work­ing out or eat­ing out!

AM: We're al­ways look­ing for en­ergy in the foods that we eat - what do you sug­gest?

JJD: I have been a ve­gan for al­most 10 years and a vege­tar­ian for 17 years and I have WAY more en­ergy than I did as a meat eater. In fact, my en­ergy is through the roof!! I strongly rec­om­mend a bal­anced ve­gan diet/life­style! Eat­ing fruits, veg­gies, and other plant based foods- such as beans, quinoa, nuts, and seeds- pro­vide me with the pro­tein that I need to build strong mus­cles and the en­ergy I need to dance like no one is watch­ing... for sev­eral hours a day! If you have ever been ve­gan cu­ri­ous, you should give it a try! There is noth­ing more re­ward­ing than know­ing that no an­i­mals had to die or work to feed me. If that's not enough in­cen­tive, your body will look and feel amaz­ing be­cause of it too!

AM: A girl has to have a cock­tail, but we still want to do it in a healthy way, what do you sug­gest?

JJD: We all have our vices. Mine just so hap­pens to be cho­co­late cook­ies and cake! The key is to con­sume in mod­er­a­tion. When­ever hav­ing a drink, choose

the drink with less sugar and drink less of it! You don't have to go hard in the paint ev­ery time you take one back! So the next time you have a night out with the girls, or a ro­man­tic evening with bae, don't deny your­self. Just re­mem­ber that ev­ery­thing you put in your body counts. The day af­ter I've de­voured one too many cook­ies I go into dam­age con­trol. I guz­zle that wa­ter down and eat as many fruits and veg­gies as I can get my hands on! Sim­ply keep­ing an eye on what you put in your body daily to keep a healthy bal­ance re­ally makes a dif­fer­ence! You re­ally can have your cake and eat it too!

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