There are many things I want from a five-star vacation: crisp linens, an infinity pool, delicious spritzes on tap, and a breakfast buffet that my taste buds will crave once I get home.
This checklist was on my mind when I arrived at Crete’s Daios Cove, an exclusive resort tucked away in a secluded bay (well, duh) east of the island. Still, what I took from my four-day hiatus – aside from a newfound appreciation for feta – was a geek-level understanding of how my body burns fuel and how that can (and should) affect how I train.
This new knowledge came through the Kepos by Goco spa, the new flagship of Daios Cove. Mentioning everything it offers would mean you’d read this article well past bedtime, but at least we mention the spa treatment rooms, two indoor pools, a glass-walled yoga studio overlooking the bay, cryotherapy, infrared sauna, indoor gym consisting of separate cardio and resistance areas an outdoor fitness area complete with rig, cardio kit and weights.
Suffice it to say, there are a myriad of ways to sweat, so recover and relax in ways your body will thank you for.
But the real gem is the diagnostic tests performed by the Kepos medical team of doctors and nutritionists.
So what health metrics have you learned?
First, there was a 3D Styku body scan, where I stood on a low platform, rotating 360 * for 25 seconds, while the machines scanned my body from head to toe. The wellness summary includes body fat percentage, fat mass, lean mass and cm measurements of all areas of the body, such as biceps, calves, neck, hips, thighs and low waist. Based on my body composition, the report therefore places me on a scale relative to the average statistics of women my age; by percentage of fat, waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratio. From there, the team discussed health and weight maintenance goals in line with the results.
But my biggest achievement was a resting metabolic rate (RMR) test, which involves lying down on a bed, as relaxed as possible, wearing a mask over your nose and mouth, and a heart rate strap under your breasts. , while the kit monitors your breathing for 10-12 minutes.
By recording the amount of oxygen you take in and the amount of carbon dioxide you exhale, the smart kit calculates how many calories your body burns at rest. From that, the metrics it provides include metabolic rate, heart and lung fitness, and how my body generates energy.
Apparently, my metabolism uses 10% fat and 90% carbohydrates for energy, which turns out to be a less than ideal ratio. In order for the body to burn fat to convert it into energy, the process requires oxygen; the more oxygen your cells can absorb and use, the healthier they are – and we all know that optimal cellular health is key if your goal is to live a long, healthy life. So the higher the fat burning rate, the healthier the ratio.
In addition to being told to increase healthy fats in my diet, which coupled with good sources of protein would mean I’m less likely to crave and fill up on high-sugar carbs (croissants and the like), I was presented to the Zone 2 training concept. It means exercising at a light, conversational pace to keep your heart rate between 60 and 70% of its maximum, because at that point your body uses fat as fuel, kicking off your efficiency of fat burning in general.
Music to the ears of this HIIT-hating athlete and Peloton lover. Since I got home, I’ve changed my training routine: I do a 60-minute ride (making sure my heart rate stays in Zone 2) four five days a week, then add strength sessions on the remaining days. A legitimate reason to avoid burpees, at least for the foreseeable? Best vacation experience ever.
It looks fascinating. Now, how much are we talking about luxury?
Daios Cove is five star and damn, every one of them deserves it. From the moment you arrive, it feels like the staff (impeccably decorated in bespoke neutral colors) slip by rather than stroll through the sleek interiors.
The exclusive resort is surprisingly large but manages to create an atmosphere that only the lucky few, including you, can enjoy. Depending on which “road” you are on, you will walk, take the funicular (a glass carriage that glides up and down the mountain) or board a golf buggy, to reach all centrally located amenities.
Are there any outdoor sports?
The crystal clear waters of the Aegean are at your disposal, whether you choose to admire them from your room’s private infinity pool, dive into the surf of the resort’s exclusive beach or with water sports such as waterskiing, paddling. boarding and scuba diving whet your appetite.
Speaking of appetites, what’s the food like?
Oh, your taste buds won’t know what hit them. Crete naturally boasts the healthy Mediterranean diet rich in antioxidants, and every dish at Daios Cove is packed with local and seasonal produce. There are six restaurants in all, offering a mix of buffet for the eyes and three restaurants serving delicious Mediterranean cuisine with an Asian and Latin American twist.
Packed with as much flavor as color, salads alone are enough to make you want to leave your old life at home and stay, forever gorging yourself on ceramic bowls filled with combinations of cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans, feta, avocado, squid , pickled peppers and EVO.
Months later, I still dream of the creaminess of feta; the hard cubes offered at my local supermarket are such a pathetic substitute that my taste buds and I are planning our next trip as I write this.
Sovereign luxury travel has a seven night stay at Daios Cove Luxury Resort and Villas for the price of £ 2,099 per person including flights from Stansted, private transfers and half board. Based on a deluxe sea view room traveling on 4th September.
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