After all the holiday hullabaloo and come January 1, every time I checked my email the words CLEANSE, DETOX, or FAST were exploding from the subject lines. The act of foregoing food for juice to make up for indulgent eating has become as common as covering a cut with a band-aid. Last year I jumped right in and ordered a home-delivered cleanse and dutifully drank my juices for the designated amount of days. But this year, I vowed NOT to embark on a New Year cleanse.
Here are a few of the reasons why
I've Got Clean Eating Down to a Science: My personal belief about cleanses is that they should be used as a re-set or to kick-off clean, healthy eating behaviors, not as a weight loss tool. I may veer off track here or there but not for long because I feel it when I do. I am wired to eat in the way that best supports my body and that includes lots of fresh juice and raw foods on a regular basis.
An Intention of Balance: Instead of resolutions, I like to set intentions. Most of my life has been governed by restriction and extremes and to me, a juice cleanse or fast feeds those behaviors. This year, I've set an intention to bring more balance into my life.
A Vacation: What better way to practice my new intention than to take it on vacation. While most of the world was getting back into real life, I was vacationing in the charming city of Prague where the fresh air was energizing and the ambiance inspiring. I skipped workouts, drank too much champagne and ate dessert -- and loved every second of it!
Taking the Emphasis Off Food: I learn a lot from my clients. I've recently been coaching one to de-emphasize what she is eating and focus more on developing other areas of her life like creative hobbies and spirituality. Looking back on my three years as a Health Coach, I realized I have tried every diet, way of eating, cleanse, you-name-it (hence bullet #1), so I'm taking my own advice and embarking on deepening my spiritual practice and some creative endeavors.
So do I ever cleanse? Yes. A couple of times a year. My preferred time is to support my body through a seasonal change like when Winter turns to Spring. I prefer a few days of strictly fresh juices, smoothies and raw foods.
View from the Charles Bridge on an overcast but surprisingly mild January day in Prague
What has been your experience with cleansing? What intentions are you focused on for 2012?