The gym and loungewear giants invited us out to discover a new, healthy, active lifestyle. We tried our best...
So in the spirit of trying to get in on the whole healthy living frenzy that seems to have swept everyone in this country aside from our fast-food-junkie, die-hard-soda-addict, pack-of-cigarettes a day office, when we got invited to Oysho’s Detox Day, we jumped at the chance to try out, y’know fitness and healthy people stuff, and possibly transform our lives. Ahh, we pictured radically altering our lifestyles, eating only fruits and nuts that we’d gathered ourselves, and things like kale from this day onwards, meditating with the best of them, committing once and for all to yoga, being friends with all the trees and the animals.... Eventually moving to a mountain top somewhere and being one with the earth and stuff. Moving on. Oysho’s detox day itinerary promised the following; a yoga session, a little meditation and breathing techniques, some lessons on how to juice like all those fit LA humans, and lunch.
So we headed over to the JW Marriott, yoga pants on, ready for a little downwards dog and kale smoothies. Now, just our luck, on the day of this lovely detox, the gods of thunder decided to mess with us and as we arrived at the beautiful outdoor venue, covered casually by a large awning, the powers that be went HELL NO YOU YOGA-FAKING HUSSSIES, and the situation turned into a full-on apocalyptic rainstorm, the sky bursting with enough rain to prompt another ark to be built, thunder blasting in the distance, and a degree of bitter cold weather we Egyptians generally can’t handle. Our yoga guru/giver of detox lessons/spirit guide, Sandra (or Shama Kaur, her spirit name) from Yalla Yoga, had to yell over the apocalypse in the making, while we all huddled in fear from the rain, as Egyptians do. But she said once we started the yoga sessions we would get warmed up. And to her credit that was one hundred percent true. Though we did get a little SO MUCH MORE than we bargained for.
Now listen here, we have tried yoga before. True, we can barely touch our toes and our whole body aches for days afterwards, but we know the general idea. THIS WAS NOT YOGA. This was aerobics meets army bootcamp drills. This is what you do to prepare for combat (we’re using artistic license here; we’re just very unfit). We expected some upward dogs and a few OMSSSS, but no, no, we were running in place and jumping with lots of hand clapping and moving our arms in manic circles and breathing like we were hyperventilating... Kundalini yoga this is called. Kundalini yoga, you are one tough cookie; Kundalini yoga kicked our asses, while our instructor gracefully carried out all the high energy moves with the ease of a supercharged battery. Our legs still hurt. We’ve been limping around since yesterday. Quite frankly we’re feeling more than a little shame on our part. Kundalini, we will do you again one day and we will conquer your energetic ways. Well, maybe.
However, throughout this vigorous (to us) yoga sesh, we think the gods accepted our sacrifice in the form of sweat and the sun peeked out from the sky and all was well again. Is this Mother Nature’s way of telling us to exercise more? Hmmm...
Next up we talked detox and juice cleanses and learned some nifty ways to stay healthy. Low on energy? Three dates will perk you up better than that Starbucks coffee loaded with seventeen million grams of saturated fat. ‘Superfoods’ are epic for your body and include flax seeds and coconut oil (which tastes effing delicious by the way). The longer the shelf life on canned foods, the worse that food is for you. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients (acetylated tartatric acid esteros silicialuminate), odds are, it’s not doing your body any favours. Juicing your food helps your body not have to expend energy on digesting the food, while still giving you the nutrients you need. Veggies or their liquid version will keep you fuller for longer than fruits. Apparently, some people go on juice fasts for weeks. If we miss our hourly feeding, we’re like rabid puppies...
So after finding out all about juices we headed over to start making them ourselves, sticking a variety of green goods into a blender. Now, you wouldn’t think it, but mixing cucumbers, zucchini, arugula, celery, parsley and other good-for-you foods into a slushy green liquid that looks like the Hulk just puked, actually tastes REALLY good. We created a variety of different veggie shots, mixing and matching ingredients and downing them with gusto.
After our juicing session, lunch was in order – a healthy one of course, but thankfully, with all its fork-and-knife glory. No liquid lunches for us just yet. Greek salad and grilled chicken and a plate of fruits. We usually go the fast food route, but when healthy food also happens to be delicious, we’re down.
Finally, we headed off home, legs a little more than achy but feeling good about ourselves. All healthy and refreshed and all that good stuff. Ready to take on (read: possibly attempt) the world of detox and hardcore yoga. We may not be juicing our way through life quite yet, but we will definitely be salad-ing it up this week and possibly trying our hand at making some of our own veggie juices at home. And one day, in the near (far) future, we will conquer Kundalini yoga. Thank you Oysho for this little reminder on how unhealthy we are. Salad lunch, here we come.
Find out more about Oysho here.