I am two weeks into my annual January cleanse and happy to report that I am full of energy, feeling like a million dollars, sleeping like a baby, and I can breathe in all of my clothes again. The truth is that I love the holidays and November and December are a total joy for me each year. I love coffee and coffee cake and sausage balls and cool cocktails at cocktail parties and dinner parties and having fun with my friends and making cinnamon rolls with my children and enjoying the company of my parents and my lovely sisters and niece and nephews and eating dinner rolls and dessert and sleeping late — and all of those really super wonderful indulgent things that say “Holidays” to me. And, really, what adds to that enjoyment is the knowledge that I will do a hard reboot come January.
It’s all about balance. And, doing a cleanse for a couple of weeks every January provides just that. Like when your computer is getting all glitchy, doing weird things and you start getting frustrated and annoyed. And then you think, “Hard reboot. Yaaasssssss!” Because you know the computer needs to ditch all the stuff that’s dragging it down. And you know that you have to take it down to zero to get a nice clean slate. Same thing with your body. Exactly.
Each year, I do the Clean Program Cleanse (find it here) and, each year, I try and up my cleansing game just a smidge. This year I have been focusing on two detoxing elements that I have really fallen madly in love with. First, dry brushing before I get in the shower or take a bath. So simple and easy, yet dry brushing yields really wonderful results, especially as we age. Dry brushing helps the lymph system flush and release stored toxins, but it has two other great and immediate side effects that have me addicted: (1) it makes your skin look great due to the sloughing effect and the increased circulation; and (2) it gives you a strong jolt of energy naturally (again from the increased circulation). You feel jazzed from head to toe. Gwynnie’s Goop has a fab article up right now with a How-To. Find it here. My brush of choice is Aromatherapy Associates Body Polishing Brush. Find it here. It’s a good one.
Second, I am crazy for the infared sauna. Unlike saunas that heat the air with the hot rocks and water, infrared saunas use infrared light to heat the air. It is a way more tolerable heat but your body reacts to red light in a way to encourages healing and anti-inflammation. The infrared light heats your body to a level where you begin to sweat gently and, like a like mild cardio workout, it warms your muscles and your organs. The infared light penetrates the cell tissue and actually causes the body to start healing itself. Read about all the many and sundry health benefits here. I have fallen in love with the infrared sauna at Elements Float Spa here in Birmingham and encourage you to find one near you. It really is a great add to any detox.