Two weeks of the new year have gone by and I have already ticked off two new experiences:
I have a huge, irrational fear of driving that would give me sleepless nights, upset stomach, and overall anxiety. But I had to conquer it this weekend with my farthest journey so far, about 130km north. Thankful I survived the drive going there and back with a trusty car that is older than Sk8ter Boi by Avril Lavigne (note the cassette tape deck 😅). Proud Ma documented the SCTEX portion for me. The fear is still there, but it’s tiny now because I met a new challenge: trying to hold my pee while stuck in traffic and there’s no restroom on sight. (I survived that, too.)
Joined my first-ever Crossfit competition yesterday, and now that I think about it, my first sports-related event since high school (and that’s a long time ago). Entering the box with all those stage lights and camera crew was so intimidating and nerve-wracking. Not to mention the athletes I was competing with! Couldn’t be more thankful to @iamchelouvm and Kerwin for their patience, support and motivation. And to all the amazing athletes of @weareprimalcf, you’ve inspired me so much to just ✅ get ✅ it ✅ done ✅ . I’m in awe of both your physical and mental strength. You’ve all motivated me to get strong this year. But today, let me spend my day in bed. 😴 📷: Jiggs #apegames2018
Today, I’m nursing my aching body. After the Crossfit event yesterday, I went straight to I’M Hotel to try their well-reviewed Onsen Spa because my entire body was hurting and I knew I had to do something before delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) sets in. Glad that they were able to accommodate me even if I didn’t have any reservations: I got in close to 6:30 p.m. and fortunately, in 45 minutes, they would have a therapist available for the treatment I wanted, which was a 90-minute Philippine Hilot (P2,100). I used the time to shower and change into my yukata. Immediately, I was impressed by the service and facilities: the shower/locker room was on an open-air floor right in the heart of the noisy and busy intersection of Makati Avenue and Kalayaan, and yet, with strategic design, they managed to create a private and lush oasis. The shower rooms are so spacious, the one I took could fit 10 people in it. The same floor has a sauna, steam room, and onsen but I knew I didn’t have time for those because what I really wanted was to sit down, have tea, and maybe take a nap at the relaxing lounge before my massage; I’ll try those next time.
So I went up the mezzanine level, where I got to have my fill of ginger tea, which was perfect because I could also feel I was coming down with a sore throat (they also have green and cold tea). I sat in one of the giant recliner sofas and reflected on my day—but not without truly admiring the hotel facilities: I could see part of the swimming pool below as well as the bustle of Makati Ave, from which I felt so isolated and removed. Their website photos do not do them justice.
Close to 7 p.m., my therapist fetched me to bring me to another floor. (I didn’t mind the numerous transfers; the elevator is exclusively for Onsen guests, meaning you won’t run into I’M Hotel guests in their finery while you’re in your robe.) Again, it all looked monastic and luxurious, it almost felt like I was being ushered into a new religious order. The minimalist spa pod looked like it was lifted from a movie set, with its high ceiling ambient lighting. By 7:05 p.m., we got started.
Oh my god—best massage ever (though my massage experience in Bangkok came close because that made me sleep and no other massage has ever done that). At the spa lobby, there was an information sheet I filled out, which included how I wanted the pressure to be, and in the drawing of the human body, I encircled the parts I wanted the therapist to concentrate on: my instructions were followed to a T. His pressure—which never wavered from start to finish—was extremely strong, his hands felt like foam roller. I was wincing the entire time and I wanted to stop him on several occasions, but I knew it was the type of muscle kneading I needed. I also couldn’t count the number of times my body parts cracked, lol. That massage made me feel like a new person and the irony was, I was no longer feeling sleepy (I actually kept yawning during the competition, haha), but energized. Which was great, because I’M Onsen’s Spa’s package comes with a buffet meal! So I changed into my normal clothes, went up to Bloom Restaurant and wolfed down as much as I could because I only had protein shake, burger, and fries the entire day. By the time I was finished, I was so happy I booked a treatment here: it was so worth it.
I want to grow up and be the type of person who gets a weekly treatment here, haha. Five out five stars!