A couple weeks ago, I was at the Woodstock Fruit Festival where I gave a few workshops on the raw food diet and met many of the 400 participants.
Many people asked me where I was going to spend the winter.
Maybe because I used to talk about my life a lot on my ezine, many people were aware that I routinely spent a few months of the winter in Costa Rica or other tropical countries. So quite a few of the great people I talked to asked me if I was planning to go to Costa Rica again this winter, or perhaps some place else.
So I told them, “No, I’m actually not going anywhere this winter.”
They were quite shocked to hear that. Why would I endure an entire Canadian winter when I used to spend at least a couple months in the tropics?
I told them I had other priorities this winter and that I was not planning to leave. I also wanted to see what it would be like to spend another cold winter here in North America.
But secretly, I have a plan to make it work. And I didn’t tell them about that plan, but I’m going to tell you.
First of all, I think the cold seems to be a big issue for raw foodists. Raw foods do make you seem less resistant to the cold, at least at first. And when the days are short and cold, eating a cold breakfast of cold fruit doesn’t seem very appetizing.
I’m doing two things to prepare for the winter:
1) First of all, I’m conditioning my body to withstand colder temperatures using cold showers
2) I’m about to do a 7 to 10 day green cleanse
Let’s talk about the first part… cold showers.
Now that sounds horrible!
I admit that I’m a total wuss when it comes to cold water. I’ve always enjoyed really hot showers and baths. If you read my book Raw Controversies, you know that at some point in my youth my mom got divorced, and for a few winters our heating system in the house didn’t work very well. So I learned back then to warm up using hot baths every morning.
But in reality, hot baths and showers only provided a short-lived relief. I was still cold the rest of the time.
About six months ago, I was at the McDougall Conference in Santa Rosa, California, where I met many famous authors including Dr. Joel Fuhrman.
At the conference, I met a former Nasa scientist, Ray Cronise, who’s featured in Tim Ferriss’ book The Four Hour Body.
Ray is also the co-founder of the company Zero G, that take people up into special airplanes to have them experience a state of weightlessness, like astronauts experience in space. I won’t tell you exactly how that happens because it will freak you out!
Anyway, Ray is also an expert on the benefits of cold water therapy. If you want to read his take on it, check out the Four Hour Body by Tim Ferriss and you’ll read a chapter where Ray is mentioned. That’s the chapter, by the way, where Tim Ferriss is immersing himself in a tub of cold water with ice!
Ray is mostly interested in how cold water therapy can magically help you shed body fat, but it also goes way beyond that.
Here’s Ray Giving a Ted Talk:
So he got me interested in cold water therapy.
However, like I told you before, I was a total wuss when it came to cold water, and even though Ray gave me a very specific method for getting used to it, I just couldn’t do it.
But as I was thinking about the approaching winter, I started doing more research on cold water therapy.
It turns out that this is a very powerful technique that’s been used mainly in Europe for centuries, and one of the reasons why the Russians and Finns are such hearty people.
I won’t go into the details of how cold water therapy may improve other areas of your health. What specifically interests me is how cold showers help you withstand cold weather much better.
How cold you feel depends on metabolism, circulation and a few other factors.
When you train your body to “endure” cold showers, you will increase its cold resistance and circulation. And supposedly it takes about two weeks to adapt.
So I thought: why not do it while it’s still warm outside.
For the past two weeks, I’ve been taking cold showers exclusively. And so far, I can say that Ray was right! It’s working.
It took a little getting used to it, but I’ve been jumping in all sorts of relatively cold lakes lately. And I feel my body is already starting to react differently to cold temperature.
However, you should ask me again how I feel about this in February! I’ll definitely keep you posted on my progress.
2) The second way to adapt to cold weather is going on a Green Cleanse.
This is a bit counter intuitive, but one way to feel warmer is to shed some body fat. This brings the surface of your skin closer to your muscles and organs, which generates heat. So your skin will feel warmer to the touch.
Going on a green cleanse will help you shed some body fat, but it also works wonders for your circulation and skin.
I generally recommend going on some sort of cleanse (green or other) about four times a year, with every change of season. You don’t need to fast completely, but just restrict your diet to one or two categories of food, and do that for about 7 days.
On September 10, we are organizing the last Green Cleanse of the year.
The Green Cleanse includes daily motivation, green smoothie recipes, a discussion forum to connect with other participants, and more.
This is the best way to do it.
NOTE: As a special for this year’s last cleanse, get a $60 discount by using the coupon code SEPTEMBERCLEANSE upon checkout.
PS: I promise I won’t have you take cold showers during the cleanse!
PPS: The Green Cleanse starts September 10th, but the deadline is before that, so make sure you sign up this week. Use coupon code SEPTEMBERCLEANSE to get $60 off. Go to: http://www.fredericpatenaude.com/greencleanse.html