Cleansing By Proximity – What To Do When Your Wife Does a 7 Day Cleanse
"I want to do a 7 day cleanse."
The statement, uttered out of the blue by my wife was not completely out of character. If it were early 2012 Sarah, a cleanse might have meant less Taco Bell and more Qdoba, but since seeing herself in a picture on top of a horse (here) where she thought she was getting...plump...a different person had emerged.
Here she is when she first decided she wanted to maintain a more consistent, healthy weight.
She attacked her personal development the way she previously would have attacked a buy one get one pair of DQ Blizzards. She went for improvement in mind, body and spirit and, at the turn of 2014, she barely needed a cleanse. But, she was going all the way. She had already completed P90X (a feat many of my guy friends had tried, but failed to do), Insanity (when I come home and it is on, I can barely believe the workout, it looks ridiculously hard), had launched her own businesses, cut her work hours down massively, and was living a differently life and lifestyle from the person that I married. I like this lifestyle way better, so when I heard it was time for the cleanse, I not only knew it was on, I also knew that she would jump in with both feet.
Turns out there isn't a ton of food where she landed. The cleanse she was doing is as close to an all natural cleanse as can be found, but the gist of it is to empty the body. She cut her caloric intake down in a radical way, supplementing it with fasting solutions, appetite chews, mineral broth, chia, greens, and small meals.
She started it on a Saturday. On Saturday night, she was hungry. So was I. But I was allowed to eat.
What to do when your wife (spouse) is cleansing
I was on my way home to eat something in front of her. Ummm, no. That's not a good plan. So, I stopped and grabbed some food.
It had been years since I had done any kind of fast. I don't know a whole lot about it, except how to do a simple 24 hour fast, so I did that Saturday night to Sunday. I basically didn't eat anything, and didn't do anything, because I didn't have the fuel needed to accomplish much, mentally or physically. It was a very nice day for me, and I think it helped her as well.
Don't fast without learning what you need to know about it or seeking professional help.
There are a few methods of encouragement I'd recommend.
The 'You Can Do It!' Cheer
Pretty simple. Say "You can do it. I believe in you.' Repeat.
The 'You Are So Much Tougher Than Everyone Else' Cheer
While competition isn't a great intrinsic motivator, in tough cases like this, it can help. Point out how much they will accomplish compared to the person who is taking the easy path. That would be basically everyone, or somewhere around 99% of people. "Sure, lots of people go to the gym 3 times per week. They watch what they eat. But who is willing to go ALL THE WAY? You are. And it will pay off."
The 'Really, All You Need Is Water' Cheer
We can live for weeks without food, so even though our 'fast food at every corner' trained bodies tell us we're hungry every 2 hours, she didn't really need the food her body was crying out for. At least not to live. Not at that point. Truth is often contrary to appearances, so I'd give her the old 'All you really need to get through this is more water, at least for right now' pep talk. I'm not sure I had the effectiveness I was hoping for, but it was something.
The 'I Can Notice the Difference Already' Cheer
Since her cleanse was working, it wasn't hard for this cheer to really help. She dropped about 2-3 pounds per day, so when I said 'I can see the difference', I know it really helped.
Do It With Them
I didn't do this, but I'm guessing it would have been the ultimate show of support.