burning it off…

i’m going to burning man. (does maniacally  gleeful dance).

yes, i’m going to burning man. there are some old-school, longtime burners who have  written off the playa and are now venturing on to other realities. i understand that the annual burning man trek is a huge undertaking, which occupies most of the year and despite being a gifting community, ends up costing a not insubstantial amount of money. $2000 is not a bad guesstimate for what the average person spends on getting to burning man – and that’s if you live in the states. now take into account the burners who come from all the far-flung corners of the globe! a good friend of mine is spending well in excess of that coming from johannesburg.

having said all that – i am a 3-time burner, 2003-2005 and for two of those years, i was very involved in the fire community and spun fire the nights of  the burn. so let’s just say that i was very involved in the scene. in fact my last trip happened right after i started binnelanders. i actually flew back for 2 weeks in order to make my annual pilgrimage to the base of the man. since then i’ve never been in the states at the same time as the burn, so it’s been 4 years since i’ve been able to go.

thank heavens for the internet. i saw a post on one of my mailing lists earlier this year about a new conclave and i signed up via email, and because of my past experience  in the fire community, they’re allowing me to slot in with merely 2 rehearsals so i get to spin again on burn night and i get a discount on my ticket! yay!

however, once i started pulling my old performance wear out of the storage unit, it was abundantly (appropriate word) clear  that there was no way i was going to fit into most of it. this probably being my last time going to the burn in a while,  desperate measures were called for. remember how skinny beyonce suddenly was in “dreamgirls”? well, that was a result of something called the “master-cleanse”, a 10-day lemon, cayenne , maple syrup and water fast/cleanse (description and instructions below). well, i’m on day 7. my last day because i won’t be able to wean myself onto regular food in time for my trip if i go the full 10.

it was pretty uneventful except for the intense migraine which started on the evening of day 3 and went for about 18 hours. it was excruciating and  i was in bed by 8, but by the next night i was much better. most days i found it pretty difficult to finish the lemon drink and had to chug the remainder so that i could go to sleep. from day 4 onward, i started getting much more active – rode my bike a couple of miles. day 6 i got up and went for my first rollerblade in 18 months and then went for a 90 minutes yoga class. today, my last day, will end with a marathon dress rehearsal for the fire conclave, but i have no doubt i’ll be just fine.

i’m certainly looking better for it. i didn’t have a scale for the first 4 days and i seem to have not lost anything more the last 3, but i feel better and i’ve read somewhere that fasting actually can extend one’s life-span. i’m beginning to think that i need to institute a weekly monday water-fast, but i also realistically know that i have all kinds of good intentions when i’m doing the cleanse (this is my 3rd or 4th time), but they don’t always stick.

but i am going to look much better at burning man than i would have a mere week ago! 😉

LEMON DRINK for Master Cleanse

You’ll need:

2 TBsp lemon or lime juice (approx. 1/2 lemon)
2 TBsp genuine organic maple syrup, Grade B (the darker the better)
1/10 Tsp cayenne pepper, gradually increase (the more BTUs the better)
10-14 oz pure water

Combine juice, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper with water. Drink every 1 to 2 hours. Take no other food, but do drink lots of water in between lemonade drinks. *my modification is that i added psyllium husks to mine to add some roughage, but by day 5 i’d had enough*

Use fresh lemons or limes only, never canned or frozen lemon juice. Use organic and vine ripened when possible. Also, Mix your lemonade fresh just before drinking. Don’t mix it up in the morning for the whole day. You can, however, squeeze your lemons in the morning and measure out the 2 Tbls when needed.

Burroughs recommends a minimum of 10 days on this. You can do 40 days safely and more.

YL Clinic says you can use Agave instead of the maple syrup. Tom Woloshyn (who studied with Stanley Burroughs himself) disagrees. Clinic says if you have diabetes or hypoglycemia, use molasses. If you feel weak or have a sugar imbalance you can add a scoop of Power Meal. Or you can try Master Amino Acid Profile (MAP) for protein without any residuals or strain on the body  more info here: http:/www.weightlossessentials.com/aminoacid.html

NOTE: Be sure to drink plenty of purified water in addition to the lemon juice.


First Day: Start with 4 oz. fresh squeezed orange juice mixed with 4 oz. water. If it goes well, drink several more 8 oz. glasses of fresh orange juice during the day. Sip slowly. Dilute with water if needed.

Second Day: Drink several 8 oz. glasses of orange juice during the day — with extra water, if needed.

In the evening make a vegetable broth (no canned soup). Use seasonal leafy and root vegetables such as: beets and beet tops, turnips and turnip greens, kale, carrots, onions, parsley, celery, potatoes, okra, one or two inds of legumes, squash, beans, a little salt, cayenne pepper and dehydrated vegetables or veg. powder may be added for flavor (no MSG or hydrolyzed protein).

Cook lightly. Drink the broth, eating only a few bites of the vegetables.

Third Day: Orange juice in the morning. At noon have some more soup with some of the vegetables. No meat, fish, eggs, bread, pastries, tea, milk, or coffee. For Dinner, have the vegetables in the soup.

Fourth Day: Orange juice or lemon and maple syrup in the morning. Fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts for lunch. Salad or fruit for dinner.

Fifth Day: Eat normally but no junk food, dairy, tea, coffee, white flour or white rice, heavy animal proteins. If, after eating is resumed, distress or gas occurs, go back to the lemonade diet for a few days until the system is ready for food.


Start each morning with 1 quart of water and 2 tsp. sea salt (NOT iodized salt). Mix well and chug dow