Recently a few folks from the gym and I did the Neera cleanse. It is a version of the master cleanse that uses some fancy hybrid syrup instead of just plane old maple syrup. The book said maple syrup is for poor people and if you REALLY want a squeaky clean butt and gut lining than you will buy fancy syrup. I think it also gets us closer to being in the 1%.
Sidebar: Foody and KD says I will never be a 1%er. It isn’t just having money. It is acting like you have money which they say I am incapable of.
Getting back on track though I wanted to share some of the interesting things that came out of the experience. First of all I want to reiterate something that I say often but often don’t feel heard. Everything doesn’t work for everybody. This includes paleo, CrossFit, the Zone, vegetarianism, P90X(especially if you only go P17X), yoga, high school, and communism. In fitness there isn’t a single path. There isn’t even a single destination. I certainly believe there are a lot of overlapping principles and a general direction but the fitness that I pursue looks very different than the fitness you might be pursuing even though our journey’s may share many qualities.
General prescription says to cleanse for 7 or more days but for a variety of reasons the four of us all did it differently. During cleansing you don’t exercise. It is a restful time for your body. You are allowing a detoxification process to happen all the way down to a cellular level and training is quite a stress on the system. You are also majorly hypo-caloric which is not a great way to see amazing numbers in the gym. Your gut gets a nice vacation from digestion though and it will thank you at the end.
I went four days because I couldn’t afford to take too much time off of training when I am planning to win the Northwest Regional. It wasn’t hard. It was boring. Consuming the same thing all of the time. It was definitely a time and money saver. Energy was fine. I thought about food a lot. Not in a obsessive way but about my reasons for wanting to eat which were largely emotional. I didn’t want to curl up with a pint of coconut bliss and watch Can’t Hardly Wait and cry about my senior prom but I did find that the social aspect of meal times was strained. When I did get frustrated about something food thoughts came up. Anger and joy both prompted a craving for something.. Certain smells that I would pass pay would incite various feelings linked as much to people and experiences as they were to the desire to consume. I lost 10 pounds and just felt, for lack of better terms, “clean” and “light.” I missed training but not because I felt like I was getting weak or soft but because I genuinely enjoy it. I know many folks suffer through it but I realized that there is something I take away from the act of actually doing it and not so much from the good feelings afterward that so many people enjoy.
Another athlete made it 3 days. Not even a full three days. Headaches nausea, chills, and ultimately such a negative association with the magic cleansing juice that the thought of it was painful. Was she too toxic? Was she not drinking enough? Is lemon juice poison to some people? Lots of things to consider and maybe with some more experimentation we could come up with some helpful answers but it definitely demonstrates that just because it works for me doesn’t mean it will work for you.
Donkey went a full 7 days and had no issues whatsoever. Cleaned out her system, took a nice break from training, and had the time to ask herself some hard questions about food, life, and fitness. Her energy was good, dreams became extra vivid, and she lost 8 pounds or so. Much of the weight comes back but you are aware of your body and the fuel you are putting in it in a way that I hadn’t experienced before. This awareness faded for me after about 10 days but it was pretty sweet while it lasted and the lessons from the experience have persisted.
I definitely recommend it as a method to learn some things about your body as well as clear out the waste products of protein digestion, lactate training, and decades of non-foods, and environmental toxins..