Wear loose, comfortable clothing to your next massage appointment. This will help you continue to feel relaxed after your massage and make the process of undressing easier prior to your massage.
Wearing many layers with lots of buttons and zippers is probably not the best option. Instead, try your favorite t-shirt with yoga pants or comfortable sweats.
If you are coming straight from work, pack a bag and bring something comfortable to slip into. Struggling back into a suit or uncomfortable shoes after a massage is a quick way to reduce the relaxation benefits of massage.
The importance of sleep and your physical well-being is astronomical. Most of your former bad habits or prolonged issues can be linked to a lack of sleep.
The risk of obesity rises with those with a sleep deficit. A study in teenagers showed with every hour of sleep lost, the risk for obesity rose. But it's not just teenagers, so you can't blame it on the hormones, but wait, yes, you can, sleep affects those too!
A healthy amount of sleep balances the levels of ghrelin, the hormones that make you feel hungry, and leptin, the hormones that make you feel full. If you wake up in the morning starving, blame it on a not so good night sleep. When you're restless the levels of ghrelin increase and the leptin levels decrease. Sleep can also affect insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. Higher blood sugar levels can increase the threat of diabetes.
When you sleep your heart and blood vessels are repairing themselves, and sleep releases a hormone to boost muscle mass. Continued unrest increases your risk for a host of issues including, heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure, and stroke.
The good news is physical activity and your nutrition can aid in a good night's sleep. Activity during the day, not close to bedtime, helps you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Making sure you don't go to sleep hungry or too full and avoiding alcohol and caffeine eases you into a restful slumber.
Sure, if you’d like to talk go right ahead. The important thing to remember is that this treatment is all about you relaxing and enjoying the experience. Many therapists discourage talking in hopes that you will relax, let your mind float free and enter a state of massage bliss.
In many instances, people may feel more relaxed starting off talking, and as the massage progresses, enter quiet states of relaxation.
The important issue here is that there are times when you need to speak up. If the therapist is doing anything to make you uncomfortable, you should let her/him know immediately. Also, let him/her know if you get too warm or too cold, if the room is too bright, or if the pressure needs to be changed (lighter or deeper). If something is not working for you – speak up! It’s OK!
Short answer: Yes, please.
Long Answer: Yes, please.
Massage is great. You know this. But it’s not always a great idea.
As cold and flu season approaches again, it’s important that you know when it may be necessary to cancel your appointment.
When you are sick, your body needs rest. It’s strange to think about it this way, but receiving massage is an active task, it is not entirely rest. Massage causes change in the body, and your body has to work to maintain stability. Getting a massage when you are sick takes attention away from infection-fighting. That’s no good.
You’re not going to be cozy on the massage table. Sure, it sounds like a warm squishy massage table would be great. But the moment you put your already-stuffy head into that face cradle, you’ll realize the error of your ways. Gravity and pressure are not your friend here. Even if I do a great face massage to drain your sinuses, you’ll likely feel worse when you get off the table.
You could get me sick. Since most of the common winter viruses are contagious even before symptoms show up, I could pass the germs along to more clients before I even know it’s happening.
Further, when I get sick, I have to cancel clients and take a few days off work. I work for myself, with no paid sick days to compensate for lost wages. Sure, as a responsible business owner I have a fund for these situations. But I would rather use that fund for a jet ski or a fancy new oil holster. So I’m gonna try to stay germ-free this winter.
So it’s a deal. You’ll cancel so as not to infect me and my massage room, and I’ll do the same for you. We’ll keep each other safe.
When to cancel
If you have nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea in the past 24 hours, or are still feeling under the weather from a recent bout of such things.
If you’ve had a fever in the past 24 hours, or fever-related symptoms. This includes chills, aches, and fatigue. Even if you’re keeping the fever down with medicine, you’re still sick. The fever counts.
If you are itchy, runny, and/or sneezy, and you’re not 100% certain it’s seasonal allergies..
If you are coughing constantly, or just a lot.
If someone in your household is ill and you are feeling at all funky, please cancel.
There is often some gray area here, especially if you are in the recovery phase of a virus or bacterial infection. If you’re unsure about your situation, please call me before your appointment and we can make a decision together.
It’s not hard to think up great ways to treat yourself. We’d all love a spa day topped off with a meal prepared and served by someone else. Maybe get a sitter for the night, so the little angels are asleep when we get home. Or just a morning where the cat doesn't wake you up by sitting on your windpipe.
But for every article about self-care, I roll my eyes at least 12 times and think "Who can afford that?" Yes, it would be great to have an afternoon to myself and a bucket of fried chicken and a cookie dough chaser. But that's not particularly healthy.
I’m all about realistic self-care. That is, activities that aren't expensive, don't involve food, and will make you feel good about how you spent that time. Here's a list of my favorites (bonus: most of these you can do with kids).
Meditate, the easy way
If you're the kind of person who can't sleep during the day, napping can be more like torture. But guided meditation is a whole other story. It gives your mind something (easy) to do so the rest of you can relax a bit. There are plenty of free guided meditations online. Check out the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center website and the free version of the Headspace app, which has plenty of options to get you started.
Read a book
When was the last time you read for pleasure? Even if you can't get to your library, there are plenty of free ebooks on Amazon, and your local library may have a free online borrowing program. Or reread some of your favorite books from childhood if you have them hanging around.
If you choose the topic right, learning is great self-care. Pick a topic for FUN. Don't feel like you need to learn something pertinent to your work or a current hobby. Check out Coursera, MIT or Harvard to start. (But there are PLENTY of sources for free online classes, do your own searching, too!)
Bust out a piece for paper and draw something. Even if you don't have fancy pencils or crayons or markers, you can play with shading and pressure and make something cool. There are plenty of free coloring pages you can download and print out.
For nearly every song out there, there's a karaoke accompaniment channel on YouTube. For reals. Crank it up and let ‘er rip. You’re a stress-free superstar now.
And when all else fails: Nap
Put your jammies on and take a nap. In your bed. Not all jammed up on the couch with the TV on. Close the shades in your bedroom and hunker down for a proper sleep.
There. You don’t have to spend money or fill your belly to feel great and treat yourself well!
This can be a hectic time of year for most people. It's easy to get swept up in the hustle and bustle. Sometimes it's hard to remember to be fully present. Try this breathing exercise I learned from Dr. Weil. It's called "4:7:8"
1. Exhale completely through your mouth. As you do make a "whooshing" sound.
2. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose and count to 4
3. Hold your breath for a count of 7
4. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound,
to a count of 8
5. This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of 4 breaths.
You've bought a massage gift certificate for your loved one. Now what? Make that present extra special with a massage basket. Assemble a basket full of goodies designed to promote relaxations. Here are 10 suggestions for what you can include along with the massage gift certificate.
2. Bath salts/bubbles
4. Slippers / socks
5. Comfy pajamas
6. Essential oils
7. Neck pillow
8. Soothing music
9. Herbal tea
10. Soft blanket
A healthy alternative to creamy dressings. Filled with heart healthy oils from avocados which also help with satiety.
3 TBS olive or Avacado oil
1 TBS lemon juice
1⁄4 tsp black pepper
Sea salt, to taste
1⁄2 C water
Place avocado, olive oil, lemon juice and water in blender. Puree until smooth. Then blend in salt and pepper.
While I might be slightly biased, I truly believe that giving the gift of massage is one of the best presents you can give. Especially during the holidays. Here are some reasons why:
1. The holidays are a stressful time of year. Giving the gift of massage is actually giving the gift of relaxation and who wouldn’t want that!
2. It’s the perfect gift for those people on your list who are hard to shop for. No one wants to buy a gift, just to buy a gift. Instead we want our gifts to be appreciated and valued. A massage is a gift everyone can use and benefit from.
3. The gift of “me time”. Most of us have people in our lives who put everyone else first. When you give someone a massage, you are essentially giving them permission to take some time for themselves.
4. One size fits all. Massage is great for everyone, regardless of their age. There is no worrying about finding the right size or color. This is one gift that fits everyone.
5. The gift of wellbeing. Giving someone a massage tells them you care about their health and wellbeing. Go online to purchase your massage gift certificates today.
When you’re relaxing on a massage table, it’s easy to see massage as a gift. Whether you’re there to reduce pain, to ease anxiety, to help you recover from the physical and mental stresses work or athletic training or parenting or simply being alive, massage is a moment of freedom in an occasionally crushing world. If you’re thinking of sharing the gift of massage with someone else for a special occasion or “just because,” you are almost certainly doing so from a place of love and generosity.
Obviously, I’m a big fan of giving massage as a gift! But just as with choosing to visit a massage therapist yourself, there are some considerations when offering this kind of gift.
How to (successfully!) give the gift of massage.Massage is an amazing gift! But there are a few steps to think about in advance.
Think about the best way to deliver your gift. Gift certificates are the easiest way to give a massage as a gift, as it allows the individual to schedule on their own. Scheduling on their behalf can sometimes work as well, although this can require additional strategic planning.
Look for genuine excitement. When you mention massage are they enthusiastic about the idea? “Oh my gosh, that sounds amazing!” is what you’re looking for, not a polite “Yeah sure, I guess I would go if it were free.” If you can get a more excited response by offering new socks, go with the socks. But many people are thrilled by the idea of getting a professional massage as a gift.
Plan WELL in advance if you want to make the appointment for them. Massage openings fill quickly, especially around holidays! Don’t assume that spaces will be available on a particular day just because you’ve got a month to spare.
Massage should never come as a surprise.Massages are great! (For many people.) Surprises are too! (For some.) But if you’re cooking up a surprise outing for a loved one, consider something else. There are a few reasons for this:
The solution to this? Talk about it in advance. It’s better to take some of the mystery out of a surprise and know that it’s welcome than to end up with the Worst Gift Ever trophy.
What if they love it?This has been an awful lot of what-if-ing. What if they don’t want a massage? What if they can’t get to their massage? What if they’re just being polite, and get a massage but kind of hate it? But there’s another important possibility to consider: what if they love it?
For starters, you won’t hear anything about it from me. It doesn’t matter if the recipient is your spouse, sibling, parent, or anyone else super-close to you. If they really enjoy their massage, if it eases their pain, if it helps them to relax … you can ask them all about it. The fact that it was your gift doesn’t make a difference. Once you give that gift, it belongs to them, and their experience is just as private as though it was all their own idea.
What if they decide to come back as my regular client? You still won’t hear it from me. If you happen to chat about it, great! (And if you’re comfortable doing so, I always appreciate it when clients share their positive experiences with others.) But while I’m always happy to chat about whether the Eagles will make the playoffs or the latest episode of the Game of Thrones, my client list stays private.
Don’t forget the most important gift recipient: yourself.You can’t pour from an empty cup. Rest matters. Peace matters. Sometimes, one of the best gifts you can offer others is to take a moment away from the chaotic world, so that you can be a better spouse, parent, colleague, neighbor, or friend. Sometimes self-care can feel like a strangely radical act, but it’s a vital one. When we have good examples of people who know to care for themselves before running themselves ragged, it’s a better environment for everyone.
Giving the gift of massage is easy! There are two ways to do that. First is online from my website. Please click the link that says “Purchase Gift Certificates”. These gift certificates are electronically delivered. You can choose to have it delivered right to the recipient which is great if you won’t be seeing them. You can also have the gift certificate emailed right to you. Simply print it out and put it in a card. If you would prefer a more traditional gift certificate, please email or call. You can either pick the certificate up from the office or I can mail it.