by Steve Andrews
The 2017-18 winter is shaping up to be a season for the history books. But with so many good days lined up one after the other for months on end, it can be easy to wear out the body and mind.
Is it possible to have too much of a good thing? It’s almost blasphemous for me to even discuss such an idea in the same breath as skiing or snowboarding. For the record, I don’t accept that idea as a possibility. But it is possible to overdo things if you don’t keep it in check. As such, the more you push your body, the more you should take time out to care for it.
The Author Steven Covey called it “Sharpening the Saw” as one of his legendary “Seven Habits” that has now become a milestone of motivational literature. Everyone does it once in a while, and for me my tired bones and joints found the necessary respite from daily abuse at the spa.
Yes, I decided to try my turn at what women have been raving about for generations to ease a body that had been worked past its threshold on countless occasions. I thought to myself, “It won’t make me feel or look any worse than I already do, what do I have to lose?” I decided on an aromatherapy wrap treatment as a way of balancing my body out from the adrenaline shots and hard slogs through waist deep snow.
At the bottom of Revelstoke Mountain Resort lies Feather and Stone, a boutique spa that opened in 2016. The owner Sara Sansom has a salon in town called Birch and Lace, a business with a focus on environmental responsibility, and she decided to bring the ethos that she and her staff have perfected to the mountain.
I’m not one who seeks out a spa on a regular basis. It’s probably safe to say that most men aren’t. I prefer to spend my time outside abusing my body, not rejuvenating it. Yet the body can only take so much for so long… and I want to be doing this for a long while.
The beginning of a new winter season and the months of playing in the snow ahead, I felt like doing my body a favour before I try to squeeze out every last possible ounce of the deep snowpack.
Having an ideal location right next to the gondola made the situation even better – with the adrenaline still flowing my body was primed for attention. The ladies at the spa were welcoming, helping me get acquainted with an unfamiliar venue.
The treatment started by removing my boots and soaking my feet in a mineral foot bath. Josslyn served as my esthetician, bringing with her a comforting demeanor and bright smile to assist my first treatment; a good ol’ foot rub. I felt a tinge of guilt for showing up in my winter boots, not realizing that she’d be hard at work on my feet within minutes. With the foot rub finished, Josslyn left me alone in the room while I disrobed and jumped between the sheets on the massage table. She returned with some products and lotion and prepped me for the wrap.
Feather and Stone focus on the ingredients in their products, with the goal of being healthy, safe and kind to the environment. Meaning that I could relax without worrying about what was in the lotion and massage oil. To me, what mattered was the feeling. And what a feeling it was. It was as if my muscles were being cleaned from the inside outward – energizing and deeply relaxing at the same time.
After the massage came time for the wrap, which is intended to stimulate the lymphatic system, allowing for a release of stored toxins. Josslyn wrapped me tightly with a mixture of aromatic and exfoliating elements.
By the time it was all done, an hour and a half flew by. I was hesitant to put on my greasy ski gear, but the fact that the hot tubs were next door allowed me to not keep them on too long. Being prepared for the day I had put my swimsuit on underneath, and a soak in the hot tub gave me even further reprieve for my weary muscles.
After all was said and done, I have to say that I felt like a whole new layer of skin was revealed, and I was primed for many more months of abuse in the mountain environment.