Travel Diary || Canyon Ranch


July 9, 2021

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i'm cassandra marcella

A few months ago, Canyon Ranch invited me to experience their Life Enhancement Program at Canyon Ranch in Tucson, Arizona and I flew out on Saturday, June 12th, to immerse myself in their wellness program.

I’ve long been an enormous fan of Canyon Ranch. I first visited their Lenox property in the mid-1990s, and I was so impressed. I still have a folder with all the medical information and advice I got at that time. Back then, I worked as an attorney at PBS Headquarters and was living a very full life, which at times felt overfull! I recall that was the first time I’d ever heard of or tried rice milk. More than 25 years later, varieties of non-dairy milk abound!

That’s the thing about Canyon Ranch that is so valuable – the knowledge and learning you get to boost your wellness are cutting edge and deeply helpful.  

I returned to Canyon Ranch in May 2013 to their property in Miami Beach (and still have that folder, too!). That time I learned all about the MacKenzie Method for posture and back pain, enjoyed fresh juices every morning, and got another body composition and exercise assessment. 

My most recent trip to their flagship destination in the desert reminded me of all that makes Canyon Ranch such a unique wellness experience. 

  • The staff is top in their fields, and all the information is scientifically based. 

  • Most of the team has also been with Canyon Ranch for decades. Newbies have “only” been working there for a decade or less. I met many amazing people who had been there for more than 20 or close to 30 years. To me, that longevity speaks volumes about their commitment. Clearly, Canyon Ranch is a meaningful and satisfying place to work. And I’m confident that’s partly due to the satisfaction they feel seeing lasting change. 

  • Guests are also loyal and return again and again, often over decades (like myself!).  I constantly met others who were regulars. Some made a point to return every year; others visited more often. Some came alone, others with girlfriends or multi-generational celebrations. I met one woman who celebrated her 80th birthday by bringing her daughter and granddaughters! 

  • Best of all – Canyon Ranch makes wellness fun. Wellness there is professional, accessible, and irrepressibly fun.  

Canyon Ranch is a wellness camp for adults. And being there was such a thrill and truly my jam. The first morning I attended a 30-minute group meditation class – my first since before the pandemic. I teach meditation myself and have been meditating for nearly twenty years. The instructor offered a beautiful dharma talk and excellent guidance (pardon the pun). I loved it so much that I was moved to tears. 

A small sample of other daily offerings included are ::

  • A lecture on the science of happiness

  • Astrology & gemstones for personal growth

  • Long & lean barre class 

  • Ceramic paint & take 

  • A class on strengthening your natural defenses 

  • Photo hike

  • Hands-on cooking class featuring plant-forward cuisine

  • Intuitive archery

  • Chair yoga

  • De-stressing your exercise routine

  • High-ropes challenge course

The Life Enhancement Program at Canyon Ranch in Tucson is distinct. They offer week-long programs that are focused on an intention such as weight loss, grief, mindfulness and effecting change. Each of their weekly programs are developed to assist with specific objectives.

Those who visit the Life Enhancement Center will return home with ::

  • a manageable and sustainable exercise program.

  • an evaluation of current eating patterns.

  • knowledge on how an optimal eating style will benefit you.

  • an understanding of their body, mind, heart and spirit and a sense of which areas need attention, and

  • perspective on the role emotions play in the choices and changes we aim to make in our lives.

The outcomes vary depending on the topic of the week, but they are all life-changing.

Their three main signature programs are ::

Achieve :: Reach your Healthy Weight where integrative experts convert the latest knowledge on weight loss and help you convert that information into lasting change. You leave with a personalized plan for your lifestyle, food, and exercise. And support to commit to it.

Elevate :: Launch your Best Life where intentions are turned into action, with proven catalysts for change. This week can focus on a personal goal, athletic performance, or a healthy-life reboot.

New You :: Your Way Forward where you discern your values and implement them into your life. Teachers provide expertise on combatting depression, fatigue, anger, weight gain, and more. 

They also offer additional weeks that focus on topics such as relationships, leadership, transitions, vitality, and more. To see the weekly schedule of the programs offered through the end of 2021, click on the button below.

Let’s get you to Canyon Ranch so you can reboot and refocus your life on long-term wellbeing and health. I’m happy to chat to figure out which program and Canyon Ranch destination would best suit you and your current needs.

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