Episode 030 Part 2 Cleansing 2
Welcome back. We are already 7 days into spring and I am so excited for all of the possibility and new beginnings around me.
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This week I am attending an advanced teacher training where for 6 days we get to dive deep into inversions and arm balances. I have always loved learning, and that's why I love sharing what I know with all of you!
I wasn't going to split cleansing into 2 trainings, and then I discovered that there is so much info, I couldn't fit it in one 30 minute training.
- Kapha/Spring season is great for cleansing
- Our bodies are starting to naturally crave lighter foods to get us up and moving
- I discussed 3 types of cleanses (Ayurvedic, soft food, and juice)
If you haven't listened to last week's training episode 30, stop, go back, and listen. That way what I say today will all make sense.
Let's talk about a few things today:
How and why you need to pre and post cleanse
- Setting up your daily schedule and why it matters
- Self care is non-negotiable
- Symptoms and emotions of cleansing
Pre & Post Cleansing
For anybody who is new to cleansing I suggest starting with a 3 day cleanse. That, I believe, is the perfect time to give yourself a reset, gives you a realistic time frame to manage cleansing, and easiest on our budget.
That being said, once you have completed 3 days and you want more, try up to 5 days. Anything longer than that and I would recommend having the support of a coach with you.
So let's say you commit to 3 days. What you need to do is give yourself time to pre-cleanse. No last binge eating to remember all of the food you love; it's time to pre-cleanse. Pre-cleansing is a way for your body to slowly get introduced to your upcoming clean and allows your body to come down from things like drugs, alcohol, caffeine, and sugar. Here's what a pre-cleanse should look like:
Day 1 Rule: 1/2 of what your normal day looks like
- 1/2 caffeine 1/2 decaf, second cup if necessary the same way
- If you drink alcohol- consume half of what you normally do
- Bring in easy to digest foods like soups and roasted veggies
- Reduce the amount of heavy breads
- 1-2 meals are meatless
- Cut down on sweets and sugar. Consume half of what you normally eat
Day 2 Rule: 1/4 of what your normal day looks like
- One cup of 1/2 caffeine 1/2 decaf, no second cup
- One shot or less of alcohol
- Double the soups and roasted veggies
- No meat products
- Little to no bread
- Little to know extra sweets (fruit is fine)
Truth be told this could be a cleanse in itself. When I was a cleanse coach I was in charge of crafting individual cleanses for people. Before I would start with their plans I would always ask them what they normally ate and then craft them a pre-cleanse plan.
Often I would get the comment/question "Oh I better get all the beer and pizza I want before I start" I'm like....ummmmmmm no! If you want to feel like you have a 3 day hangover, be my guest. My recommendation is to ease into it.
Moving on! You have done your cleanse and you're like...now what? Can I order Chinese tonight? No. Can I go into Pret and get that meatball sub? No
Give yourself a post cleanse or what some people call a re-integration stage. Here's why: You just took amazing care of yourself and allowed your body to heal. You digestive system needs some time to process your regular food. It needs a warm up.
Think of it like this: Ever go on a vacation and as soon as you get back you are scheduled to work? Or you get back from your gig and your side job wants you to come and pick up a shift? Ugh it's the worst. You have to change to feel refreshed and get settled into your new routine. You body needs a minute to slowly adjust. Think of this cleanse as the same.
- Finishing a juice cleanse? Try a smoothie or an avocado
- Finishing a soft food cleanse? Try a light grain like quinoa
- Finishing an Ayurvedic cleanse? Try some protein saute with some veggies
Take the time to reintroduce your body to your regular foods and food triggers. Triggers are foods that our bodies don't respond well to. They can be foods like: wheat, beans, grains, caffeine, soda, sweets, dairy.
You all know that me and dairy can't really get along, and it's not to keen on heavy breads.
Adding one food and/or trigger at a time allows you to monitor how your body is able to breakdown and fuel itself. From this slow adding back in your might find that your body doesn't need as much caffeine, or feels really foggy when you have wheat, or crashes really hard when you load up on sugar. Maybe you find that your body can handle it all, and how will you ever know if you don't take it slow when adding foods back in. Resist the temptation to just hop right back into your daily foods.
Make time for your cleanse. Clear out space and/or organize your week in a way that supports your cleanse. When you are cleansing you body is basically taking a digestive rest/vacation. Now is not the time to work a double. Even if you are able to fill your backpack full of food a 12 hour shift is not where you want to be while cleansing. Do you need to request off 3 days from work? No. Here's what I suggest:
- Find time in your schedule
- Make sure day 2 is your day off
- If you are going to work, prep your meals the night before
- No cleansing if you are traveling
- Not during your biggest audition week
Trust me when I say you will be thanking yourself that you cleared space in your schedule for this. Not only will this keep you from having to do a shit ton of meal prep, but will also allow your mind and body the slowdown it really needs. Ideally this is what your schedule would look like:
- Day 1- Work the morning shift. Food/juice is prepped for when you get home
- Day 2- Day off. Make meals as needed. Include as much rest as you want
- Day 3- Work the evening shift. Finish the last food/juice
That's ideal, and I know for some of you that it's not possible. If you are juggling multiple gigs, are booked out, now might not be the best time for you.
Here's what I would suggest for you:
- Use the pre-cleanse as your goal.
- Try a clean eating challenge- this word has gotten a lot of buzz lately. What I mean by this is to make as many healthy options as you can while you are out and about. Do the absolute best that you can
- Try a "add 1 more" challenge. If you're super busy see if you can add 1 more "good" thing in. That can be one more kapha season food, one more healthy soup, 1 more meditation session. Add in more good stuff and you are already half way there
You know I've said this over and over: Small changes make big results!
SELF CARE!!! You guys this is non-negotiable. I mean this is basically a self-care podcast so you know this was coming. Adding in self-care practices to support your cleanse is just as important as the food you are consuming. This is why your schedule needs to be slightly flexible.
One of my favorite things to do during a cleanse is to take a warm bath with Epsom salt and lavender. Epsom salt helps relieve pain, reduce headaches, and reduce inflammation. When you add that in with the soothing benefits of lavender you have just created a beautiful spa experience for under $10.00.
Another must do is time for stillness. Make it part of your daily schedule while you are cleansing. 5-10 minutes minimum of meditation, prayer, journaling, listening to chill music is a M-U-S-T. Getting still and allowing your mind to heal and settle in my belief amps up your cleansing sequence.
Another treat and maybe it's silly, but I have absolutely done it is buying yourself some fresh flowers. Those of you who look at those fresh flower arrangements at Trader Joes and always thing you can do without them: BUY THEM. Surround yourself with things you love, that feel luxurious, and are beautiful. It can feel like a small treat, but can really bring you joy when you are sitting their with a caffeine headache.
Self-care options are endless try some of these:
- Massage (if budget allows)
- Taking a nap each day
- Use your class pass for gentle classes like yin yoga or meditation
- Walk along the Hudson (weather permitting)
- Start a new book/movie
Also: No strenuous exercise while cleansing. No HIIT, No crossfit, No kickboxing, No power yoga. While these are great on a normal day, it takes too much energy for your body. You energy should be saved for healing.
Symptoms and Emotions
Because your cleansing your body is getting rid of toxins and releasing addictions to foods we eat everyday. Our biggest physical responses come from sugar and caffeine. Depending on how dependent your body is on these addicting foods will depend on how strongly it reacts. Typically you might get a headache, feel low energy, starving, angry, frustrated, or have really intense cravings. Fear not; most of this happens only on the second day (your day off) although I can't speak for everyone.
Here's what I know: The more careful you are about pre-cleansing the less likely you are to feel completely terrible. From what I have experienced and coached here is what I typically see:
Day 1- AM: Pumped, excited, nervous
Mid: Slight headache, a little hungry
PM: Energy dipping, headache
Day 2- AM: Powerful headache, achy, yet still committed
Mid: Tired, sensitive eyes
PM: Early to bed
Day 3- AM: High energy
PM: Craving "real food"
Like I said, this may not be true for all but it is what I normally see. If you are having anything more serious, stop cleansing. The point is to not add additional stress on the body, you want less stress.
Also if you are on any medication, check with your doctor first before beginning a cleanse.
Wow! Now I have given you everything you need to know when you are ready to cleanse.
If you are thinking of cleansing shoot me an email so I can build you a menu to get started with.
And I just started this a few days ago, but we now have a Private Facebook Group where you can ask me questions as you think of them and don't have to wait for office hours. Plus I will hop in there do some Q&A, Live trainings, and continue to support you. Go ahead and join, and bring your friends, your audition buddies, your directors, bring them all!