“Momma, what’s stay-cation?”

OK, well Forest Gump didn’t quite put it that way. It’s summer and we’re supposed to be on vacation, right? But with fuel costs soaring out of reach, many have resigned themselves to deferring that trip to Jamaica or that long weekend in Napa. Instead we begrudgingly continue to punch the time clock.

I propose another option — the stay-cation. Put your leave request in, but leave the car in the garage. Stay home, get fit and save your paycheck all at once. This is the ideal opportunity to have a stress-free, money-saving vacation where the focus is entirely on your physical, emotional and nutritional health. Here’s the perfect stay-cation itinerary:
Sleep in. I call it making deposits into my sleep bank. Pull the blinds and indulge.

Make an easy, healthy, delicious breakfast. Get the blender out, throw in a scoop of protein powder, a chopped frozen banana, a glass of milk and some peanut butter or scramble some egg whites and spinach and serve with a scoop of fresh pico de gallo.

Go for a walk – around the block, on the beach, up one of Ojai’s trails – and get the blood pumping for 30 minutes to an hour each day.

Make yourself a turkey sandwich with real turkey (nothing processed) on whole grain bread. Eat some fresh fruit.

Dust off one of those fitness videos that’s been sitting on the shelf.

Clean out your closet (do you really need those parachute pants from 1985?) and donate what you can to the local shelter.

Go to a farmers’ market and get inspired. Collect as many ingredients as you can for the perfect home-cooked dinner.

Open a bottle of wine to go with your meal.

Do something you’ve never done before: Go rock climbing, kayaking or surfing. Be sure you go with an expert (let Google show you the way).

Take a yoga class and get Zen.

Get caught up with your Netflix queue.

Read one of the books stacked on your nightstand.

Write a letter, find a stamp and mail it.

Do some push-ups.

Pay a visit to the harbor and buy the freshest catch from a local fisherman. Take it home and let it sizzle in a pan with some garlic, butter and white wine (save yourself a glass, too). Serve over brown rice with fresh herbs.

Bring the spa home and make a body scrub out of a handful turbinado sugar, a decent drizzle of almond oil and a couple of drops of your favorite essential oil (I like invigorating peppermint).

There you have it, all the elements of the perfect getaway without the fuel costs. Now if only we could do something about the maid service!

Always consult a physician with your medical questions and concerns.   

Lisa Snider is a local freelance writer. For more, go to www.LisaSnider.com.