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Luxury retreats for stressed-out execs

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your job and want to improve your lifestyle, try an executive health program.

Mental health in the workplace is a topic that’s recently gained traction in the media, and it shows no signs of slowing down.

The stress under which CEOs find themselves on a regular basis is also well-documented, recently and notably by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who described having an “excruciating”, exhausting year.

But what can these overworked executives do? Some business leaders are going on luxury retreats, to unwind, network and develop themselves.

One such retreat is the Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa in Miami, which offers an executive health program, for two days at US$3,900.

The Center’s Director of Marketing Communications, Jennifer Weinberg, says the program often identifies health issues like heart, weight and blood problems, as well as osteoporosis and disorders of the thyroid, kidney and liver – all stress-related illnesses.

Pritikin Longevity Center

In addition to time lost to sick days, “decreased job performance, decreased efficiency, creativity and problem solving may be side effects of poor health,” says Jennifer.

“Lack of focus, fatigue, mood swings, depression, anger and distraction are also common. Undiagnosed disease may even lead to early and unexpected retirement.”

Pritikin isn’t alone in offering health programs tailored specifically to the high-energy, high-stress life of an executive. Canyon Ranch, at its Tucson AZ and Lenox MA locations, offers a similar four-day program, from US$5,615. It’s a personalised, detailed experience, designed to identify and address health problems in executives, much like Pritikin’s program.

“Our comprehensive program of physician consultations, testing and more help determine where our guests currently are health-wise, versus where they should be,” says Jennifer.

“Our physicians work with our guests to help them develop and implement a lifestyle change program which they can follow for long-term health success.”

Though they’re hosted at luxury resorts, these programs aren’t based on wishy-washy, feel-good pseudo-science. Pritikin’s program involves a variety of medical tests, going as in-depth as blood and bone tests, with a 45-minute physician consultation.

“This allows the executive to really sit down and discuss their medical history and health goals,” Jennifer says. “They can work together to develop a personalised, health-priority action plan, based on Pritikin’s scientifically-proven program.”

Canyon Ranch offers an even more comprehensive examination (it is four days long, after all) – including fitness, nutrition and mental health.

Canyon Ranch

But the most important element of these programs is their long-term lifestyle plans. They ensure executives can go back to work happy and relaxed, and stay that way.

There are a number of retreats across the world, providing a similar level of luxury, like Chiva Som in Thailand and the Hugh Jackman-owned Gwinganna in Australia, though few offer the executive-customised package available from Canyon Ranch and Pritikin.

If you’re beginning to feel the pressure and the demands of executive life, it might well be time for you to indulge yourself at one of these retreats, and discover the best way to live your life.

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