I am sharing this post in tandem with my originally shared post, “Dear Movara Fitness Resort,” and here are my disclaimers:
- Allegedly. Everything I’m sharing here is based on my own values (which have evolved greatly even in the past year) and personal experiences and should, therefore, not be taken as factual anything. Yes, I know: it is absolutely mind-blowing that a blogger would preemptively negate what they are sharing, but I like to present a balanced view.
- I share many things in the space of health and wellness – for example, a technology that I have used to transform how I exist in and show up in this world that I call #zencrack, supplements (including alternates to a network marketing company I used to be with), gadgets like this scale I love, and more – but these are the things I personally use and share AFTER getting to a place of personal power and post-restoration of sanity, which I absolutely did not possess for the 20 years in which I partook in diet culture as well as 2+ years following my very first visit to Movara Fitness Resort in May of 2016.
I truly thought that post-Movara me was woke AF – like as in this video share that I did on the topic – and had blessed and released her obsession with weight, and I supposed I, in many ways, had, but here’s the deal… my doing that had nothing to do with Movara which is a place that – see below – fully advertises as being a weight-loss resort.
&, based on ^^ (& my entire experience of the place both as a guest and staff member), Movara caters to people who are going there primarily for the purpose of losing weight (versus just a fitness vacay). Most – if not all – people who visit Movara have felt that they have “tried it all” to no avail (shoot, I even helped in the creation of this YouTube ad titled, “Why Staying With Us Will Change Your Life”), and, therefore, going to the resort as a “last resort/option.” They believe that the only way in which they can feel like they are having any success/achieve a “result” (which is the goal – never to actually be healthy or SANE as it relates to your body) is to do something so extreme which means leaving their actual lives entirely and being in a perfectly controlled environment where they have zero real-life stress (full housekeeping and complete meal and snack preparation) and exercising for anywhere from 4-6 hours a day (if not more, depending on what an individual does in excess and there are many who do way more than the program offers).
Before continuing, visiting Movara is NOT CHEAP; I spent $10K in my first 4-week visit – including flights, shuttles, services, coaching, and the stay itself) – following everything post-the events of 2012 in which I became a DV survivor and had piled on 40 lbs living through extreme PTSD and depression. See image right below for current prices.
The people visiting Movara are mostly rather well-to-do financially and are, therefore, even able to afford visiting such a place. Also, for a moment, consider a place that suggests that it will “change your life” (the format suggests in just one week) but which also offers special rates of “4 weeks or more.” Essentially, and especially for people with the financial means who feel the most at their wits end in regards to their struggle with weight, they incentivize them to stay for longer and, shoot, they benefit so greatly from people who, more or less, decided to practically live there (I’m not sure if they have made them, but – at one point – they were considering creating small individual living spaces that people could purchase entirely for this purpose).
I mean… if one’s life was so changed, why wasn’t the one-week stay enough? I will tell you why in my humble opinion.
- Movara (& nearly everyone in the space of health and wellness) does not benefit from your life actually being changed and you actually being well. Like for reals and for perpetuity. There’s no MONEY to be made in our actually being well and not feeling like we are in perpetual chaos and angst over our physical forms (which it is always about that arbitrary # on the scale and your aesthetic versus ACTUAL “health and wellness). *Pause for another disclaimer* Note: for those who may feel so compelled to call me out on my own hypocrisy: Dudes, I’m aware of my own and love to talk about it. YES, I share the above-mentioned – from which I make an income and all in the context of “health and wellness” – but, hell, if I could magic wand erase the entire condition which compels people to need/want any of those things I share (fully knowing I would lose that income), I WOULD. In a heartbeat. People >>>> profit all day errday and, if you have known how I have done any of the businesses I have shared over the past 6 years (or if you even knew me at Movara and how things ended), you will know that I’ll never chose comfort and convenience over my values as, unlike far too many people, they aren’t (nice-to-say-out-loud-and-have-people-think-I’m-great) hobbies for me.
- Instead, Movara fully benefits and takes advantage of how magical and “feel good” your experience is there and they very much so banks on you forming personal relationships with them (the owners) and the staff; it is part of the charm of the experience, and it is these relationships that compel people just as much as the resort itself. If they really wanted to empower you to for reals health and wellness, the whole program would be intro’d with (& re-emphasized constantly) as NOT being about “this place, this program, or these people” &, rather, about YOU showing up, making the investment into your health, and doing all of the work. THAT would be empowering you and inspiring you to maintain power for yourself; what actually happens – including their reckless & purposefully having no boundaries between staff (many who are not qualified to serve in the roles they serve or to counsel people as they do) & guests.
- Movara – which has you weigh-in and take photos upon arrival (while also claiming “it isn’t about weight”) – wants you to “get a big number”/”result” during your stay there, because they know – as everyone in the weight loss industry knows – that there is NOTHING that people want more than that freaking number on the scale going down. If you get that big number, then you will believe that it was all “worth it” and a great success. However, no one likes to talk about – as happens for so many – water weight & muscle mass is lost, how unrealistic – even potentially harmful – it is for people who are being that active to only be eating 1500 calories a day, and they will explain it all away. That number is so intoxicating and addictive, I mean… who wouldn’t absolutely delight at losing 5-8 lbs in ONE WEEK (something they “could never do at home on their own”) Note: I was an outlier (#lifetheme) and extended my stay based on how I felt (which was still HUGELY PROBLEMATIC) at Movara versus the scale as I – old mindset belief alert – “only lost 2 lbs” in my first week and “just 8” total in 4 weeks there. I’m pretty positive that most people would find those numbers to be a massive fail for their time at a fitness resort, but I had wisened up to the # on the scale and body composition big time. Note: the below is me being SO OVER THAT NUMBER.
- Movara does not care at all – nor do they have any practical interest in caring – that absolutely NOTHING about the program is remotely realistic or sustainable (including that big weight loss # you saw on the scale that they know you’re now addicted to); I would say about 95% of folks who go to Movara are or become return guests, and so many who find themselves having regained “all of the weight they lost at Movara” (or for a short duration after) and often much more thereby rendering them to SO WRONGLY BELIEVE that Movara is HOW/WHERE (read as: the only place) they can be successful at this thing that has haunted them for so long.
- In spite of its “lectures” (which were great when I was first a guest and then included mostly people from the owners’ church throwing up quote memes and other nonsense inspo stuff) and purporting otherwise, Movara knows that people are obsessed with their weight (ya know, since the entire health industry – including medical professions – have helped make us insane about it which they, TOO, benefit from) and that the people visiting the resort can afford to make it their crutch for wellness. The individual who I mentioned in my blog post about the sexual harassment sitchu, well, he basically lives at Movara for months at a time. Please explain to me how “Movara has changed his life…” or anyone else’s who feels that they “need” something so extreme to help them be well (which they have wrongly misunderstood to be altering their gravitational pull towards the Earth)
My personal”Movara/fitness resort dysfunction” was so bad that (much of this shared in the last post if that is where you started)… I went for a week, became so extremely addicted to the place/people/experience that I extended my stay for another 3 weeks, and THEN – because I was so EXTRA AND DYSFUNCTIONAL AF – was so convinced that Southern Utah (but really Movara, in particular) was such a critical part of my wellness that I decided that I was GOING TO MOVE TO UTAH (what in the ever loving HECK?! #thatsforyoumormomsreadingthispost :-P).
&, due to my powerful ability to manifest what I want (usually with zero effort & a skill that mostly used to my harm thinking about negative stuff I don’t want to happen), I, legit, manifested the “perfect job” for me at the MFR that magically opened up 2 weeks to the day of my arrival. Oh, and, then… While living in Utah and doing my “dream job,” all of my dysfunctions manifested like crazy because I no longer knew how to eat or trust my intuition around food or fitness; if it wasn’t at Movara (it was like I wanted to be a guest for perpetuity), I didn’t know how to do or manage life at all. Truly, how I lived my life during those 10 months outside of the resort were diametrically opposed to everything the resort stood for (& that I stood for since I represented the resort). That weight I lost? Regained it ALL. & the kicker – because I was not quite yet done with my dysfunctions around this topic – was that, while living through my craziest and most toxic times with my former network marketing company and possessing no REAL TOOLS TO HANDLE LIFE, guess what I decided…? That I “NEEDED” to escape my life/not deal with my actual problems like a GDANG GROWN-UP,” go back to Utah” to a DIFFERENT “wellness resort,” and I DID LIKE THE PHENOMENAL DUMBASS I WAS.
So off to Utah I went and this time to a place called “WellFit Zion” (co-founded by the former partner of the present owners of Movara and it felt great to me that she was basically their nemesis), and – because I was the kind of person who needed to make the same mistake at least twice – I insisted to my brother that I needed to go for a month to “get away” and “get well again.” Well, 3 days into my first effing week, I was there thinking, “WHAT HAVE I DONE?!” but I was still too much of an idiot to try to change my set (& publicly stated) plan to undo it, so I stayed there for 4 weeks (yes, absolutely enjoying myself because, again, WHO TF WOULDN’T ENJOY A HEAVENLY GETAWAY IN GORGEOUS SOUTHERN UTAH?) and it wasn’t until my very last week there that I basically introduced myself to the thing that has (again, not trying to give it all my power because I am the one who showed up and did the work) actually – in the most meaningful way to date – changed my life. For a whopping $549 (this price varies and, if you are so inclined, you can watch my video on my entire experience or check out my blog or just reach out to me (I check my other folder) to find out how you can get a $45 value 45-day trial for $1 and/or get a 2-week trial of the device for just $30). I promise that – of all the people or places you have ever bought/tried something from – I am one of the (if not the) most ethical, because I would rather lose money than do anyone dirty/be deceptive/purposefully manipulative/put profit over people as so many people and businesses sadly do.
& no, the whole point of this blog post was NOT to plug the above. It was to say that… we ALL need to stop giving our power away to people/places/products/programs and anything else when it comes to our health and wellness. Selling stuff with the intention to help people isn’t bad (I mean… errmm… that’s kinda the premise upon each product/service that is being offered/comes out into the market is built upon), but anyone who is creating a context for you to be dependent on them or what they are selling – as opposed to use it temporarily to help catapult you into the direction of being able to do it without them/everything else – is a FRAUD; every single thing that is actually in the service of our wellness should lead with, “You don’t need this. you can do it all on your own. I can support you but I don’t want to become your crutch.” THAT would be real integrity and honesty in sales which is what I believe in.
Most of all, I wrote this to help all of us RECLAIM POWER. We were born with the innate ability to be well and we were (very much so on purpose) to believe that wellness is something that lives outside of ourselves – that it exists at a fitness resort, in a supplement (& again, I use and share supplements but they are no longer my starting point or a crutch for me), via a coach/trainer/accountability group/health challenge – but this is a LIE that makes other people rich and you poor (or poorer as you spend all of your money and, holy hell, YOUR TIME WHICH MAKES UP YOUR ONE & ONLY LIFE) in this perpetual frenzied pursuit that some pill/product/program/person will save you from you. No. Hell no. I mean… heck no. ONLY YOU CAN SAVE YOU FROM YOU.
& yes, I mean that even if you chose to use ANYTHING that I am sharing because – like I said above – I would (with the greatest joy I have ever known) eagerly give up the sharing of anything if it meant that people were fundamentally (& for reals) WELL. Not less pounds on a scale. Not some bullshit thing called “skinny” or an arbitrary as all get out size (I’m a size 16/XL in kids and can range from a size S-L in women’s clothing).
For me, that TRULY LIFE-CHANGING (ahem, *cough,* versus completely bullshit) shift from giving my power away to reclaiming it (while still giving a healthy shout out to what helped me) has been the most profound experience of my life. I am a 180-degree different human than I was when I – last July – felt I “needed to go to yet another fitness resort.” Note: I am not ANTI-fitness resorts (just like I’m not anti-MLM/direct sales but I digress!) and you may very well see me visiting a spa getaway or a wellness-focused retreat in the future, but you will NEVER see me deciding that that place is my end-all-be-all to my actually being WELL.
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