On the ARC, there is an exercise component, but it’s not as bad as you might fear. If anything, I want to make sure you’re not overexercising on the Cleanse. If you were to go too hard, you’d put your body under stress, which is the last thing you want to do. The aim is to expel toxins, mobilize stagnant lymph, gently speed up metabolism, and deliver lots of lovely oxygen all over the place.
Everyone comes into the Cleanse at different exercise levels, and I’m sure you will find the right pace for yours. For example, if you are a never-exercise person, all you really need to do is take a 15- to 30-minute walk every day to elevate your heart rate slightly and increase oxygen intake. Previous clients who have chosen to take it easy and rest during the Cleanse did fine with light strolls or bike rides. On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve had clients who were enthusiastic gymgoers or elite athletes who felt great from Day One and carried on their demanding routine as normal throughout. If you’re a seasoned exerciser, you can trust yourself and your instincts as to what you are able to do and handle. For the large swath in the middle between never-exercisers and dedicated athletes, I’d like you to try a few different types of exercise that will help you make the most of the Cleanse.
The ideal form of exercise on the Cleanse is rebounding, otherwise known as jumping up and down on a mini-trampoline. Like juicers and blenders, mini-tramps can be purchased for next to nothing (less than $50) or a fortune (close to $600). Clients of mine who got the $50 units were quite satisfied with them.
As for what to do on a mini-tramp once you have one, you can search online for videos of “rebounder workouts” and find dozens at every skill level.
Or you can just hop on the mini-tramp and bounce up and down for 10 minutes with your feet barely leaving the mat. This minimum-impact rebounding is called “health bounce.” All you’re doing is letting momentum take your body up and down, up and down. It’s easy and fun, and absolutely fantastic to do during the Cleanse.
Rebounding is probably the most detoxifying exercise possible. It gets the heart going and brings oxygen in. But more important and unique, it is one of the only movements you can do that actively mobilizes your lymphatic system. Baby hops on a little trampoline get your lymph circulating, which boosts the immune system thanks to the increase in white blood cell activity. Unlike your blood circulation system that is mobilized by a pump (the heart), the lymphatic circulation system is composed of one-way-flowing rivers and does not have a central pump. It opens up to allow greater volume of flow during changes of gravitational pull or g-force. When you land on the tramp and then bounce up, you are changing g-force over and over again, causing a surge of lymph to flow at a faster pace. As it flows, it sweeps up toxins, which will be moved to the kidneys and expelled in urine. The healthier the lymphatic drainage, the more toxins are cleansed. You will be ridding the body of pouches of stagnant, stuck lymph (the primary cause of cellulite) as you bounce away the toxins that cells release as a result of the Cleanse process.
What’s more, rebounding is really easy on the joints, requires no experience, takes only a few minutes (10 minutes a day is good), and can be done rain or shine, all the while strengthening cells and building muscle fibers.
If you can’t rebound due to such conditions as balance impairment from neuropathy or Ménière’s disease, you can get the same g-force lymph benefits by sitting on a fitness ball with both feet planted on the floor.
Moving is a must on the Cleanse, 15 to 30 minutes a day. Ultimately, you’ll upgrade a daily walk into a speed walk, then a jog, and then a run, but start slow. If you aren’t accustomed to running or jogging, please don’t start on the Cleanse! You’ll put undue stress on your system, which alters your hormonal balance counterproductively.
If you do run a bit, and don’t want to overtax your body, find a pace that works for the Cleanse and when you can, push yourself harder. It’s actually very important that you exercise the right way on the Cleanse to stay alkaline.
What do I mean by that? Well, have you ever finished a run and felt sick and light-headed? Or have you finished a run and really needed a sugar hit? In both cases, you were exercising anaerobically, or using glucose stored in your muscles for energy instead of using incoming oxygen. Anaerobic exercise for long periods is acidifying, not alkalizing. In other words, it is the opposite of what you want.
Your goal during the Cleanse is to eliminate acids, toxins, and stored visceral fat, while lowering inflammation. You will do all that by exercising aerobically, with walking or easy jogging. This kind of moderate-intensity workout is highly alkalizing, improves your fitness level, strengthens your heart, boosts your metabolism, increases red blood cell count, and eliminates toxins from your body through your skin (sweat) and breath (respiratory system). It also triggers your body to go to slow-burn fat storage for energy, instead of grabbing quick-access carbohydrates (sugars), as it does during intense, anaerobic exercise.
The bottom line is, if you find yourself panting or gasping for breath and your heart is beating out of your chest, you are using sugar (not fat) for energy, increasing inflammation and clinging to stored acids. If you are breathing normally enough to talk and your heart rate is elevated somewhat, you will be burning fat, reducing inflammation, and purging stored acids.
Depending on what mode of exercise you’re in—anaerobic or aerobic—your body will use different muscle fibers and access a different, primary energy source. The switch occurs when you hit a certain number of heartbeats per minute (BPM), and your body automatically shifts from an aerobic (fat burning, alkalizing) to an anaerobic (sugar burning, acidizing) response.
I’d say 98 percent of my clients are interested in finding and staying in the fat-burning zone during exercise. This zone is not one-formula-fits-all. To find it, you have to calculate the ideal BPM for you. It’s not a hard computation, although there are different formulas. I recommend the Stu Mittleman method.7 Mittleman is an ultramarathon champion who set the world record for the 1,000-mile run, completing it in 11 days. He also holds the U.S. record for the 6-day race of 578 miles, or 96 miles per day—the equivalent of 3.7 marathons. In 2000, he ran the entire width of the U.S. in 55 days at a rate of 52 miles per day. We can consider him to be somewhat of an authority on aerobic training and running! He’s also a strong advocate of the alkaline lifestyle and has based his entire training regimen for these extreme events on exercising correctly to ensure his energy is derived from fat, not sugar.
His method for calculating your fat-burn zones is simple:
۱۸۰ – [your age] = maximum heart rate for aerobic, fat-burning exercise
If your BPM goes over that number, you will automatically switch into sugar-burn mode. If you feel dizzy and queasy after a run, your maximum heart rate is too high and you are burning sugar.
A 50-year-old’s maximum fat-burn heart rate is 130 BPM (180 – ۵۰ = ۱۳۰). A 20-year-old’s max fat-burn heart rate is 150 BPM. And so on.
Now, it gets slightly more complicated from there. Ideal target fat-burn rates are then broken down into three levels. The lowest level of intensity is the “warm-up zone” (WUZ). The middle level is the “mostly aerobic pace” (MAP). The highest is the “most efficient pace” (MEP).
For the purposes of the Cleanse, I want you to concentrate your efforts on MAP, the middle zone. It’s where peak fat burning occurs, and it’s the most friendly for detoxing and flushing out your lymphatic system. MAP can be calculated with this formula:
Maximum heart rate (180 – [your age]) – ۱۰ = MAP upper limit
MAP upper limit – ۱۰ = MAP lower limit
Using myself as an example, my maximum heart rate for fat burn is 143 (anything higher would be anaerobic), calculated as: 180 – ۳۷ (my age) = 143.
To find my MAP upper limit, the equation is:
۱۴۳ – ۱۰ = ۱۳۳٫
To calculate my MAP lower limit, the equation is:
۱۳۳ – ۱۰ = ۱۲۳٫
So, when I run, I try to keep my heart rate between 133 and 123. If I pushed myself higher and went over my MAP upper limit, I’d be in MEP territory, which is absolutely fine, but it’s not as ideal for fat burning. If I dipped below my MAP lower limit (from 123 to 113), I’d fall into WUZ for warming up (or cooling down).
For a 50-year-old, the numbers look like this:
۱۸۰ – ۵۰ = ۱۳۰ BPM = maximum heart rate for fat burn = MEP upper limit
۱۳۰ – ۱۰ = ۱۲۰ BPM = MEP lower limit = MAP upper limit
۱۲۰ – ۱۰ = ۱۱۰ BPM = MAP lower limit = WUZ upper limit
۱۱۰ – ۱۰ = ۱۰۰ BPM = WUZ lower limit
You might hit your MAP zone with brisk walking. You might have to intersperse walking with running (or vice versa). The good news is, once you’ve become an accomplished runner (running regularly for six months), it’ll take more speed to get your heart going, and you can add 5 or 10 BPM to each zone.
Obviously, the best way to know your heart rate is to wear a wrist monitor like a Fitbit, Jawbone, or Apple Watch. You can download a free heart-rate
app for any smartphone, but it won’t give a continuous readout. I strongly urge you to invest in a wrist monitor. It’s up there with a juicer as one of the most important investments you will ever make.
Are You in the Fat-Burn Zone?
You can talk normally without being short of breath.
Your vision is clear.
You have heightened senses of smell and sight.
You are in a steady, comfortable rhythm.
You would rate your level of intensity between four and seven.
You are short of breath, especially when talking.
You feel dizzy or nauseated.
You feel uncomfortable.
You can’t wait to finish.
You would rate your level of intensity at above seven.
I would love for you to do or try yoga during the Cleanse.
Even if you’re not an experienced yogi, please try a few easy poses or take a beginner class and get your body stretching. Yoga is a huge support for your body as you detox. All that stretching, bending, and getting your head below your heart gets your lymph moving and brings oxygen to every cell. It’s called a “moving meditation,” and known to reduce stress, which is therefore balancing (literally) and anti-inflammatory.
So that’s it! Some bouncing, walking, and stretching. Nothing crazy, nothing strenuous, and nothing to be scared of. Let your body be your guide about pace and frequency. The Cleanse isn’t the right time to kick off a whole new regimen. Just make sure you get moving in some way, every day.
ARC Exercise Do’s
The ARC is all about positivity—in food, fitness, and attitude. Just “do” your best, and do not worry if you miss a workout!
DO exercise in the morning, before your day officially begins. This tip comes from personal experience. I’ve been a runner for years, and I have found that unless I run as soon as I get up, I won’t do it regularly. If I leave it until the afternoon, I’ll find any excuse not to go (e.g., it’s too late, I’m too busy, I’ll go harder tomorrow). The key to success is to get into the habit of getting up, putting on your sneakers, and hitting the road before you brain is fully awake! (Oh, make sure you put on clothes, too!)
DO focus on time, not distance. The idea is to stay in your fat-burning zone for a certain amount of time. For one person, that might mean running seven-minute miles for an hour. For another, it might mean walking 15-minute miles for half an hour. Let your BPMs and stamina decide how intense and how long you exercise. No matter what your current level of fitness might be, you are working at a pace that is perfect for you, so do not go by a predetermined regimen you read online that was set by somebody else.
DO listen to your heart and stay in the right zone. Some may need to speed up a bit. Some exercise regulars will need to slow down. If you stay in the zone, you will burn fat, build strong muscles, and improve speed and endurance. After only a few short weeks of training in the right zones at the right speed, your aerobic capacity will very quickly increase. It will happen surprisingly fast, so don’t feel like you are taking a step backward by slowing down for a while. It won’t be long before you are back up to your previous speed, but you will find your heart rate staying low and feeling like you can run forever.
Another exercise I’d like you to do on the Cleanse does not involve sneakers or sports bras. I’d like you to do some breathing exercises.
Along with your kidneys, liver, and skin, your lungs are detoxifying organs, too. You exhale waste with every breath, and, unfortunately, most of us are not making the most of our lungs. Shallow breathing into the chest only uses the lower part of the diaphragm, leaving the upper part inactive and collapsed. If you don’t inhale into every part of your lungs, you’re more prone to stress and negative emotions. (There’s a reason why people say, “Just take a deep breath” to calm down, and why smokers relax as soon as they take that first deep lungful of smoke.)
In purely mechanical terms, when lobes of the lungs are chronically under-inflated, they gather a buildup of slimy mucus. The mucus irritates the cells of the lungs, causing an acid environment of irritation and inflammation. Mucus impairs the organ’s self-cleaning system, tiny hairlike cilia that serve as lung sweepers. If these cilia are caked down in mucus, they can’t clear germs and bacteria. (FYI: Smoke basically deadens cilia, and over time, the only way to get rid of mucus is what’s called “smoker’s cough.”)
If you take deep, slow, directed, focused breaths to inflate the lower part of the lungs (the “belly” if you will), you can help your lungs stay clear and healthy, supporting them in their job of exhaling CO2 and clearing microscopic irritants. It’s simple, straightforward, free, and one of the best things you can do for your body.
Some of the benefits of taking level, deep, cleansing breaths include:
Stress reduction. Those with stress and anxiety issues tend to take short, shallow breaths. Conversely, long, deep breathers report better control of their stress and anxiety.
Depression. Research has found that deep, diaphragmatic breathing helps people suffering from depression.
Pain relief. Deep breathing releases endorphins—natural painkillers—into your system. The next time that you have a headache, stomachache, or any other pains, imagine breathing into the place it hurts.
Asthma relief. Deep breathing strengthens the lungs and the core, which helps asthmatics control their symptoms.
More energy. Shallow breathing leads to inadequate oxygenation of the blood and fatigue.
Lymphatic cleansing. Deep breathing can act as a kind of pump for the lymphatic system, cleansing and detoxifying your body.
You might be thinking, Breathing is something you do all day long. It’s not something I’m going to be able to stop and think about.
But you can . . . if you link it to something you already do and create a new habit, like hydration or walking. On the ARC, I’ve built breathing exercises
into your daily schedule, so that you will remember to do them. They’re part of the Cleanse’s structure, so it’s impossible for you to forget about them. Before long, you’ll feel strange if you don’t do them.
When I first started consistently practicing breathing exercises, I experienced an immediate, noticeable effect. My energy increase was incredible, as well as mental clarity, especially in the afternoon when I was starting to lag. I became so much more effective and got so much more done! The first few days required some serious alarm reminders and Post-it Notes, but in no time, the exercises became as habitual as washing my face and brushing my teeth. I’d have my morning oils and automatically know that it was also time to practice deep breathing.
Breathing Exercise #1: Basic Deep Breathing
Three simple steps:
Lie flat on your back.
Put your hands gently on your belly at the bottom of your ribs with your fingertips just touching each other.
Take a slow, deep breath, letting your belly rise slightly, which will separate your fingertips.
Breathing with your belly may feel unnatural at first, so repeat this 30 times or until breathing with your chest feels like an unnatural action. When you breathe deeply into your belly, the diaphragm creates a suction, drawing air up into the lungs. This fills the bloodstream with wonderful acid-fighting oxygen and expels carbon dioxide, cleansing the body of the acid wastes and their harmful by-products.
Breathing Exercise #2: The Lymphatic Cleanse
I call this “power breathing,” and it’s one of the best, most effective exercises you can do for free, every day, in five minutes. It is also remarkably simple. I learned the lymphatic cleanse exercise from Tony Robbins.8 He swears by it, and I’m not going to argue with his energy levels!
It’s all about inhaling, holding, and exhaling, in a particular rhythm.
Inhale for one count
Hold for four counts
Exhale for two counts
The golden ratio is one-four-two. If you prefer to inhale for two counts, then hold for eight and exhale for four. I recommend going through the cycle 10 times, at least once a day, during the Cleanse, but ideally twice (right after you wake up and before you go to sleep, for example). As far as the Cleanse goes, I’ve taken the liberty of adding these exercises to your daily schedule, but there’s no time like now to give them a go and incorporate them into your life before you start.
Which is exactly what comes next: the week before the Cleanse. The countdown begins in the next chapter. We’ve spent 10 chapters covering the nuts and bolts of how and why the Alkaline Reset Cleanse works. We’ve worn the operations manager hat. You now know why people fall out of balance, and the impact the ARC will have on your Five Master Systems. I’ve explained why I’ve chosen the foods you’ll be eating (and why you need to cut out others). We’ve gone over the supplements and equipment you’ll need, the aerobic and breathing exercises you’ll need to do. Big picture? You have a perfect, 10,000-foot aerial view of the ARC.
Next, we’ll be zooming in on the small details of what you’ll actually be doing each day.
This is where the rubber hits the road.
Everyone, start your engines (and blenders)!