A Very Lagom Weekend with the Volvo XC40

If you’re an unashamed wellness trend follower like me, then I have no doubt that last year you heard all about the Danish concept of Hygge. Like me, you might’ve bought a few books, thrown away half of your wardrobe and bought a ton of fairy lights and chai tea……guilty. But there’s a new trend in town for 2018 and I am unashamedly jumping on the bandwagon now!

Lagom. La-who? Yes, I hadn’t heard of it either, mostly because it’s a Scandi concept and I don’t frequent there often. The word basically means #balance which I am all about. It is often synonymised with ‘comfortable’, ‘suitable’, ‘well portioned’ and ‘fitting’, basically meaning not too much, not too little, just right. Three little bears chic, if you will.

So why am I talking about Lagom? Well, I was fortunate enough to be invited on a Lagom-inspired wellness weekend with Volvo to celebrate the launch of their Lagom-inspired city car, the XC40. I know what you must be thinking, what does a car, a fitness blogger and a spa weekend have to do with anything?! Well it’s all about this balanced way of living, the car (like my life and my fitness regime) is all supposed to be just enough, not too much to be pretentious or exhausting but not too little that it feels basic or boring. Read on to discover more about this wonderfully balanced weekend with Volvo.

So first up, being picked up in the XC40 from my house and driven to The Grove Hotel in Hertfordshire. I’ll let you in on a secret, I do not often get chauffeured around the country for events so this felt like a pretty big deal! Furthermore, they sent the most adorable older gentleman called Peter to drive me and we spent the whole time talking about all the fun little functions of the car that were blowing his mind (and consequently blowing my mind also). For example, there is a button you can press that basically means the car will drive itself and keep within the lanes and away from other cars as long as you’ve got your hands on the wheel……insane.

Our first activity of the weekend was a briefing on the car (aka, how to use the car, why it’s awesome and we should get one and please don’t crash the car). I’m not going to lie, I was intimidated being first up to drive but luckily, I had Carly as my co-pilot to clutch on to the sides of her chair when I accelerated too hard and tell me I’d missed the turning when I already passed it – I joke, she was a fab co-pilot, especially after we figured out how to work the Spotify! I drove us, relatively smoothly, to our first activity in Ware, Aerial Yoga at StudioFly.

Disclaimer: I am not a mega yogi. I practice some Bikram and some gentle yin on a Sunday, but you will rarely catch me doing inversions or backbends or anything remotely acro so Aerial Yoga was a totally new kettle of fish. Thankfully, in the spirit of Lagom, our session wasn’t too easy but not too challenging, so I got a little sweat on from some of the strength-based moves but also had a nice time chilling out in an upside-down bat swing. It was hilarious, slightly dizzying and so much fun! If you haven’t tried Aerial Yoga before, I would definitely recommend it and our lovely instructor Lisa was amazing at giving us 1:1 feedback and being a source of all the graceful-inspo we could handle.

Next up: HiiT in the Park with Faya aka Fitness on Toast. So, when I started back as a PR girl many years ago now the rise of the Instagrammer/Blogger was only just beginning but I’d clocked Faya for her beautiful imagery and #fitspo workouts and activewear. I was beyond excited to be working out with her as an ‘influencer’ down the line. Our workout was outside which was freezing, but the sun was out and after a run around the park and a quick warm up, we were ready for our HiiT circuit to begin. Again, in Lagom-style, it wasn’t too hard (I didn’t feel like I’d just smashed a Barry’s Bootcamp or anything) but it was enough to make me feel warm, energised and like I’d achieved some good fitness for the weekend! A highlight of the workout would be when Char put her hand directly in to some dog poop doing Bear Crawls – hilarious.

After a pretty full on morning of driving and working out, I was excited for the chill-out element on the weekend, the spa! I met Jess, Carly, Tim and Polly down in the relaxation room in our robes and slippers for a chat and some boomerangs ahead of our massages and then we head to our separate therapists for a deep tissue Swedish Massage. Personally, I love a hard massage, so when my masseuse asked how the pressure was, I gladly told her to firm it up a bit and that she did. Maybe the Lagom element here was that she didn’t dig her elbows in enough to make me cry but definitely enough to have the knots of lactic that constantly trouble my shoulders popping and crunching…. (I reread that back and realise how gross that sounds but I’m leaving it in because it was definitely a highlight of my weekend).

After all the formal activities of the day were over, I head back to my room to shower and get ready for dinner and meet my +1 for the evening Katie Forbes, who else?! After a catch up on the day, we head down to the restaurant which had been decorated just gorgeously. The food was again Lagom-inspired, a buffet where it was up to you to take ‘just the right amount’ and the dishes were deliciously fresh and healthy. We enjoyed each other’s company over good food and good wine and eventually moved on to Espresso Martinis in the bar with Katie, Tim and Martin (but not too many because y’know…Lagom).

At midnight, we retired to our rooms for a good sleep in one of the cosiest beds I have ever had the pleasure of sleeping in. In the morning, Katie and I head down for a lovely breakfast and a quick pitstop in the spa for a swim, steam and jacuzzi. We needed ‘just enough’ spa time to get us back home and ready to take on Monday again haha!

My adorable driver came to pick us up around 12 and take us home. I can confirm that the XC40 is definitely large enough to fit two sleeping girls in the back. The Espresso Martini back-lash finally kicked in and we napped the whole way home…sorry Peter. But what a ride it was!

So that was a whistle-stop tour on my exciting weekend away with Volvo; driving, eating, playing, relaxing and drinking in a delightfully balanced way. If you’re a city slicker looking for a non-ostentatious car that’s going to make your life a hell of a lot easier, I’d recommend you check out the new XC40, it was a dream to drive, especially when you were cruising on down to aerial yoga or a 5* luxury hotel……

I’d also recommend everyone takes a little element of Lagom inspo in to their daily lives. We constantly live in a world where we’re told we need more stuff and need to pay more, do more, get more, have more, but when we take a step back and think about it, all we ever really need is ‘just enough’.