Happy Chinese New Year! As I ring in the Year of the Rooster from Hong Kong, I’d like to share my experiences of quite literally, the freshest start to 2017. Over Christmas vacation I participated in a one week detox program at a serious “Eat, Pray, Love” typeof place… This package included daily massages, yoga and meditation. Oh, and daily enemas (self administered), twice.
What a way to kick off the new Year, without a single bite of food for 7 days straight, really aiming to clean out the system. The “You’ve Changed my Life” package at the Spa Resort in Koh Samui has given my a whole new appreciation for the simplicity and deliciousness of natural and raw food. I also learned a whole lot about poop.
They recommend a pre-cleanse before arrival, to ease the body into a smooth cleanse. Instead of following the recommended precautions (nothing but raw fruit and veg for 3 days leading up to), Kate and I went HAM in Phuket the day before. Eating at the most wonderful joint full of locals. We enjoyed 6 courses at 11am with two Thai iced teas (each) and coconut ice cream for less than $6 USD per person. I would go back to Phuket solely for this food. After we indulged, we departed to the resort.
Brunch at Mee Ton Poh in Phuket Town. A multi-generational family run resto next to the clock tower. Known for their flavor-packed noodles with runny egg and creamy satay with peanut sauce.
Tom Yam Goong soup from Mee Ton Poh, traditional soup of the region. Similar to a sweet and sour loaded with seafood.
How we felt about our last caloric intake of 2016.
This resort is located on the beautiful Thai island of Koh Samui, planted right on the beach with an open air restaurant, that I couldn’t actually enjoy for 7 days, instead drooled in agony while other patrons received their heaping plates of raw pad thai, fresh fruit and other resto delicacies. However our spa package did allow us detoxers one fresh coconut water, carrot juice, two soup broths and five detox drinks a day, as well as 30 herbal supplements to inhale at appointed hours.
This trip was expected to be relaxing. Upon arrival we were surprised to find that we’d be on a pretty tight schedule. The day started with detox drink which consisted of a fresh squeezed fruit (watermelon was my go-to) combined with some kind of herbal powder. They were surprising filling. After the morning chug it was off to daily meditation at 7:30 with one of a few leaders, my favorite was named Sun Bao. A peaceful tea connoisseur from Germany, having spent the last 15 years in this way of life on the island at the Spa.
We literally sat on a mat for an hour with our eyes closed. With sound of the waves and birds chirping in the morning, I was able to get into it some days. It is difficult to keep the mind from racing.
Yoga followed. Led by true yogi pros, 1.5 hours of stretching and intense poses was the best part of the day. As the week went on I felt my poses getting easier and learned how to actually relax in the more difficult ones. It was a very inviting place, no one seemed to care what anyone else was thinking.
Then another detox drink. Then it was time for daily enema #1. I have to say that I’m seriously amazed that I did it. I did it twice a day, for a total of 11 times. It was disgusting but became somewhat comforting in that it was part of my daily routine, en route to better health. It was normal to have a conversation about feces with other resortees. Oddly enough, it wasn’t weird because everyone there was going through the same thing. Talk about communities… And the best part was I legit felt 5 pounds lighter every time!
The daily massages were fantastic. I partook in the foot massage, full body oil massage (my fav), thai massage and aloe vera wrap, which was good for the mosquito bites. The massage beds are laid out in a massive open air hut with burning incense. Massages ranged from 450 ($12USD) – 1000 baht, a steal! I paid for one nearly every day because YOLO. Our package included a daily Thai abdomen massage, resulting in not one but two massages a day. Plus there was a steam room. *Heaven.* The rest of the day was sprinkled with more detox drinks, broths and allotted bevvies.
Somehow in the the process of peace and relaxation I succumbed to my first ever sinus infection – which was literal hell. But what is live without obstacles, hey? We did enjoy some breakfast on the morning of departure. Local cow yogurt with fresh fruit and bee pollen, next to my iced coffee with almond milk *actual heaven on earth*
We departed the resort a day early due to time constraints (work, sigh.) and took the overnight train into Bangkok after a pleasant ferry ride to the mainland and bus to the station. The beds were hard as rocks and the lights don’t shut off. I slept maybe 3 hours.
The Verdict: Was the experience worth it? Yes. Will I return to the Spa Resort on Koh Samui? Yes. Will I partake in the 7.5 day cleanse again? Probably not. It was a life changing experience for sure and I did end up dropping about 6 pounds in the process, but overall I love food too much to give it up for any period longer than 3 hours.
Tip: Bring lots of mosquito repellent. Embrace the tranquility. Come for a few days before starting the cleanse to properly pre-cleanse and then stay a few days after to enjoy the delicious kitchen.
And here are some Bangkok pics for your enjoyment.
What would any trip to Thailand be without a ride on a traditional Tuk Tuk?
A glimpse of royalty at the Great Palace in Bang Kok.
With the death of the recent King, Soldiers were lined up around the entrance of the Great Palace. Thousands of locals adorned black and made their way into the palace walls to mourn.
Grilled mini bananas on the street, YUM!
The Cleanse program suggests a come-down to allow the body to slowly reintroduce solid food. This part is very necessary, chewing the first few bites (first meal) was a strange sensation. Stopped by Rasayana Raw Food Cafe in Bang Kok. Enjoyed this mushroom “burger” with cashew cheese sauce, avo and greens. Quite delicious! Worth a stop over for all the raw food believers.