Thursday, October 13, 2011

Detox Fast - Day One

7.15am - My alarm sounds and wakes me from my long overdue sleep.  I get up and make my way to the 'Detox Bar'

7.30am - A young girl in her early 20s from Myanmar makes my first shake - a concoction of bentonite clay and psyllium husk. The bentonite clay draws toxins out of your body and assists the psyllium - a fibrous bulking agent that sweeps toxic build up out of the intestines, much like an intestinal broom, during the elimination process.

A Spanish and an American woman also appear for their morning shake, as does my brother.  The Spanish woman is on her third day, and the American is on her second.  We all exchange names and stories of the program so far.  I grab my daily ginger tea and retreat to my room.

9.00am - I take my herbs

9.15am - Excited by the prospect of a daily massage for the next seven days, I make my way to the massage area, a breezy open room.  My masseur, a cheerful young Thai girl is waiting for me. She instructs me to lay down on the mattress on the floor, and I allow her to work her magic, all whilst inhaling the fresh sea air and subtle wafts of aromatic incense; I feel like I am being massaged in a Buddhist temple, and suddenly feel very, very zen.

10.30am - Shake

10.45am - Time for the first colema.  I meet with the manager and am shown to the room where all the action is to take place.  This detox ashram is filled with wall to wall small blue tiles which give a peaceful, cooling feel to the room. Sitting high on a blue tiled shelf is a 20 litre bucket filled with warm water and freshly brewed coffee and a rubber hose.  I laugh to myself as I recall a former housemate of mine, a naturopath who gave herself weekly coffee enemas.  The caffeine supposedly stimulates the liver into rapid detoxification mode.

The manager runs through the equipment, and even though I've done this before, I can't help but giggle and blush at the mention of the words 'anus' and 'bowels', possibly because she seem so serious.  It always makes me wonder why we all seem to revert back to some sort of infantile silliness at the mention of these bodily parts.  Why are they so off limits, and the butt of all jokes (excuse the pun!)?

After her directions, she leaves the room and I am left to begin the process.  The session takes about 40 minutes and goes along smoothly without any hiccups.

The remainder of the day is broken up into 1.5 hour intervals for either a shake or herbs, swimming in the warm tropical ocean, and lounging on the beach.

2.30pm - I am starting to feel slightly peckish, although I can't help but marvel at the fact that I am not yet ravenous.  It must be a combination of of the heat, the amount of liquids I've been ingesting, and of course the psyllium husk.

2.40pm - I join my fellow detoxees in the herbal steam room.  It must be about 45C in there, but it feels fantastic.  There is the predictable banter about the degrees of hunger everyone is experiencing, and how much longer we each have to go till we can eat again.  I sit there in silence, envious that I am only on day one, and also slightly concerned by the tales of hunger and weakness those on their third and fourth days.  I remind myself that by day five, I will be feeling incredible, and my skin will once again be glowing.

3.00pm - We leave the steam room and rinse off by the salt water pool, in time for more herbs and a much anticipated coconut water.  Despite the fact that I ordinarily drink one of these at least once a week, for some reason, this particular one tastes like something sent from heaven!  I savour every sip, and stretch it out for as long as possible.

I'm joined by Manuel, a handsome young guy from Peru who proceeds to tell me that he has been at the resort for 7 months, doing intensive course after course of yoga.  He is like every other yogi person I have ever met; unusually high on life and full of positive energy and joy.  I can't figure out if I find it all a bit slightly annoying, but in any case, it makes me reconsider my decision not to attend our free daily yoga class and lecture.  I want his energy.

5.00pm - I need another coconut, but as we are only permitted one per day, I am forced to have it on the sly.  I grab my brother and we decide to head to Sri Thanu, the closest next town.  He needs to buy a pair of flip flops, and I also need to get a sim card.  It's nice to be away from the resort, albeit, briefly.

6.00pm - We make it back to the Detox Bar in time for our 'dinner' - a warming glass of vegetable broth, strained from boiled vegetables.  Although I am still not too hungry, it tastes amazing.  I watch the American and Spanish girls wearily lay down on the deck chairs by the pool, and it dawns on me yet again that  I still have 6 more days to go.

7.30pm - Now feeling like a seasoned pro, I once again head to the 'detox ashram' for my evening internal cleanse, however this time, thankfully, I do not need any further instructions, and am left to manage on my own.  I emerge at 8.15 and head back to my bungalow - full of water, shakes, broth and herbs, but still not starving  As a very hungry person ordinarily, I am amazed by this feat.

The toothache that has been bothering me on and off for the past four months and most of the day seems to no longer bother me.  Even though I am sure it's gonna need some serious dental work, I am relieved and pray that it remains painless for the next six days.

9.00pm - I take my final herbs for the day, as well as my pro-biotic and retire to my room, relieved that I have successfully made it through day one.

Six more to go.

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