I’m a high-stress, tense, go-go-go individual. I always have been and, I suspect, I always will be. I’m happiest (and most efficient and most fulfilled) when I have numerous competing interests in my life: work, freelance work, blogging, travel, being an attentive partner and dog momma, keeping in touch with friends and family… And really, I wouldn’t have it any way.
But, I rarely take time for myself, which is something I’m focusing on in 2017. This year, I’m being selfish; I’m being greedy. This year is all about me. After all, how am I going to be my best self and offer my best self to those around me if I’m not focusing on myself first and foremost? Part of this renewed focus on myself is taking better care of myself. I’m dropping pounds, toning up, and am committed to regular body work. Yoga, spinning, cardio, weights. Exercise can take a toll even when it’s needed and beneficial. Enter deep tissue massages to the rescue.
My First Deep Tissue Massage
I remember the first time I ever had a deep-tissue massage in Vermont (hello, Green Mountain Bodywork in Middlebury!). I really didn’t know what to expect. In my mind, I had pictured something deeply relaxing, a light feathery touch, something that magically softened my muscles. What I didn’t know to expect was some serious muscle work… elbows, knuckles, deep, deep, deep muscle work. I quickly realized just how tense I was, how terribly un-ergonomic my setup was, and how badly I’d been neglecting myself. And I learned how I begin to crave deep massages and wouldn’t be satisfied with something gentle… I’m all in in all things in life and massage is no different.
Ten years later, I’ve had my fair share of deep muscle work since that initial massage. The deeper the better for the benefits they offer, in my opinion… treating chronic pain, breaking up scan tissue, improving athletic recovery, reducing muscle tension, lowering blood pressure (among others).
After moving away from Middlebury and Green Mountain Bodywork, I would treat myself to a once-in-awhile hot-stone massage from Mad River Massage in Waitsfield, Vermont. Then, Jolita Brilliant, from Brilliant Massage Therapy in downtown Burlington, Vermont, came into my life, at just the right time with my renewed focus on me this year.
Brilliant Massage Therapy, Burlington, Vermont
Jolita Brilliant, which isn’t her actual last name but does describe her perfectly, has been in Vermont for over two years now and has been a licensed massage therapist at Brilliant Massage for over a year. Previously, New York City was home to Jolita, and before that, she lived in Lithuania. A singer-song writer, a classical pianist, a body builder, and ultra-marathon runner, all in one? She’s impressive!
Jolita started embracing deep-tissue massage while training as a body builder, and she quickly realized it’s her true calling. From my 90 minutes with Jolita (pronounced Yo-li-ta), it became quite apparent that she’s caring and deeply committed to her practice and clients… Not to mention, she’s super skilled at what she does.
During my 90-minute massage, which felt like a blissful eternity (when was the last time you didn’t look at a screen or were distracted by a TV, cell phone, or another person?), Jolita got deep into areas that have been bugging me for months and months (hello glutes, hello neck, hello back) and relieved a bunch of deep knots. She uses warmed oil, hot stones, and a bamboo cane technique (which was new to me) to really get into the areas that need some serious focus. The whole experience was a wake-up call that I need to prioritize self-care and spread the word of just how important it is, especially for those of us who sit all. day. long. Treat yourself, seriously. Think of it as an investment in your health… the benefits really are endless. Make 2017 about you too, starting with relaxation, rejuvenation, and some deep body work!
- Every massage with Jolita is custom. Whether you want more of a Swedish massage (or, like me, go for the deep, deep tissue), Jolita will consult you on what feels best and what areas are of most need before starting. She also gives sports massages, pre-natal massages, and foot reflexology.
- Finding Suite 9 within the Gideon King House on King Street can be a bit tricky (I went upstairs and all around on my first visit). Walk through the main front door and proceed straight back on the lower level. You’ll enter the addition, where you’ll bare to the left and walk down a staircase… let the soothing music and the signs guide you to Suite 9.
- Jolita is flexible with scheduling, including Saturday appointments, which is huge. She also doesn’t book back-to-back-to-back like some massage therapists, which made me feel less rushed and more relaxed.
- When booking an appointment with Jolita, whether you live in the areas surrounding Burlington, or you’re visiting on vacation, make sure to mention Erin and Travel Like a Local: Vermont; you’ll receive an extra 15 minutes of body work added onto your massage!
- Jolita’s massage prices are some of the best in the area; $39 for 30 minutes, $70 for 60 minutes, $80 for 75 minutes, $99 for 90 minutes, $129 for 120 minutes. And, if you refer someone to her, you’ll get 15 minutes extra complimentary.
- Jolita offers a loyalty program for her clients. Every five massages, your receive an extra 30 minutes added onto your custom massage.
- There’s ample parking on King Street, so parking should never be an issue when visiting for a massage. Just make sure you give your meter enough time, so you’re not stressed during your appointment about it running out (defeats the purpose, doesn’t it?)
Brilliant Massage Therapy
35 King Street, Suite 9, Burlington, Vermont
Call or text: 802.825.4116 (remember to mention Erin and TLALVT for extra free time!)
P.S. I received a complimentary massage in exchange for writing an honest review of Brilliant Massage’s services. Also, I’m obviously not a doctor, so before engaging in any regular deep-tissue massage work, I’d advise consulting with your doctor. Jolita is nationally licensed and fully insured, so you can also consult with her!