Despite the fact my last trip to the Caribbean involved cycling 65km in the inaugural Barbados Cycling Festival, my vacations don’t tend to involve much fitness or physical activity. In times gone by, my vacays were solely for the purpose of not moving… to recover from the hours of teaching put in week after week, month after month. Since I’m back in the 9-6 rat race, I’m just like everyone else, struggling to fit exercise into my routine.
Now the tides have turned, there is no way I could turn down the chance to visit St James’s Club, an all inclusive resort in Antigua, for a first look at the Elite Island Resorts x W8 GYM collaboration ahead of the official launch in May 2019.
But First, What Is A W8 GYM?
W8 GYM – pronounced /weɪt/ GYM – is an innovative ‘GYM-in-a-Box’ created by singer Fleur East and her cousins Nick Meaney and Clive Payne. I first came across it in 2018 when they officially launched in London and I can definitely see the benefit with it’s versatility and flexibility.
As part of the collaboration with the Elite Island Resorts Group guests will be able to access a W8 GYM for in-room workouts (video instruction provided) or during scheduled daily classes on the beach.
The unit consists of a mix of dumbbells, 3 sets of resistance bands and accessories like handles and a door anchor. W8 GYM say that there are over 200 different exercises that you can do with it and they provide a library of exercises as well as workouts on their website.
Your W8 GYM Questions, Answered
Q: How much are they?
If you want the Cool White, Dynamic Green or Hot Pink it’ll cost £149. If you want the Gold Deluxe Edition it’ll cost £169.
Q: How heavy is it with everything inside and used?
The W8 GYM weighs 14.5KG fully packed and 3.5KG empty. There are 10kg’s of dumbbells, 2×2.5kg, 2×1.5kg, 2x 1kg so with some playing around you can have up to 19 different variations of weight!
Q: What was your favourite exercise using the kit?
This is so basic, but I loved using it as a step! You can get some tough cardio workouts doing exercises like ski jumps over the step or box jumps onto it. It’s not particularly high so feels safer and more secure. In all the time I’ve had a W8 GYM I didn’t know there was a door anchor so I’m keen to try that out with the resistance bands to do exercises like flyes and tricep pulldowns.
Q: Can I come [to Antigua]?
Hahaha! Yes, yes you can! Or Barbados, St Lucia and The Grenadines where Elite Island Resorts have more sites to enjoy.
Top Tip: Wanna travel with your W8 GYM? Just remove the weights and pack it in your carry on luggage. You can get a damn good workout using the W8 GYM as a step along with the resistance bands.
Our Stay At St James’s Club, Antigua
When I tell you that I lived my best life at this resort it probably sounds like a cliche / exaggeration / plain stupid* (delete as appropriate) but… it’s true. We stayed in the Royal Suites which had private balconies with picturesque views across the beach and ocean.
One thing I also noticed about the resort was the effort they made to lessen the impact on the environment. Personally I had more than enough towels in my room which didn’t need changing everyday which was encouraged. Drinks were served in reusable cups with paper straws which meant you had to sip up quick before your straw went soggy!
The food and service was out of this world. The buffet breakfast never failed to impress with continental (European) foods, authentic Caribbean cuisine and everything in between including my childhood favourite fruit loops. Yes, I ate sugary coloured cereal every day on vacation because we have one life and I’ma gone live it.
With every thing being inclusive and there always being an option for food, there was no need to eat until you couldn’t walk! After breakfast we enjoyed taking a stroll to the coffee shot for some espresso based drinks (maybe someone had a cookie too) and enjoy some time on the beach before the day started.
We managed to pack so much into those 4 nights including a spa day at Verandah Resort and Spa with a massage, an evening at Pineapple Beach Club, 2 morning W8 GYM workouts on the beach, in room workout, lounging by the pool, on-resort dinners each evening, cocktail drinking, a day on a catamaran plus lots of time to chill and an interview with Fleur which will be coming to the blog soon!
Due a vacation?! Elite Island Resorts have a launch celebratory offer – Customers booking a Royal Suite category room, will have a W8 GYM delivered to their home free of charge on return. A 7 night stay on an all-inclusive basis at St James’s Club & Villas Antigua based on two sharing costs from £1,592 per person including return flights in economy from London. For more information on this offer go to: www.eliteislandholidays.com/w8gym