Testimonial from Fatimah, NYC:
"Best. Trip. Ever.
I've repeated those words dozens of times in reference to my experience at the ABAL detox retreat in Ecuador. I jumped on the opportunity as SOON as the retreat was announced. I did so because I knew it was time for me to take a leap and do something HUGE for myself. And I'm so SO glad to have invested the time and resources to attend. It was an amazing and life affirming experience. Mara, Danny, Alexandra & Tony provided the perfect environment to relish in health, growth, shedding the old, letting go, purging the bad and making room for the good.
And it was oh so good. I still don't know how we lucked out to have such an amazing group of strangers converge in a foreign land and share so much support, encouragement and love. From oil pulling, yoga & affirmations in the morning, classes about virtues, choosing love and embracing hope in the afternoon to clinking our glasses of green juice at lunch time or devouring Tony's raw food creations at dinner and watching films about health/food & transforming the body at night, we all had the added benefit of sharing each step of the amazing journey with each other. Whether from NY, Dallas, Cali or Argentina, each person seemed to have traveled to Ecuador with an open heart, the willingness to share, a kind spirit..and just general goodness. It was a week+ of healing, encouragement and joy. It was the best gift I could have given myself at the time.
I came back home rested, grinning from ear to ear and 100% certain that all was well and that I had the choice to continue to be well and to just-keep-getting BETTER. It was so worth it.
The crescendo continues :o)"
Last week we were lucky enough to meet up with Fatimah and Lisa (another retreat participant) in Brooklyn. They are some of the loveliest women EVER and we adore them so, so much. It's pretty amazing to now have real friendships with them and everyone else who attended. I don't ever want to take that for granted. It's honestly such a gift to feel connected to people in a real way.
And - we've been busy responding to emails from people really interested in coming to the retreat, and we figured it would be helpful from time to time to post some answers to questions in case some of you are wondering the same thing. See what Danny wrote up after the jump....
Q: Would you say this retreat is less focused food/detoxing/weight loss than the other retreats? I wonder if one would leave feeling just as detoxed from addictions like sugar, overeating, etc.
A: Great question! There are a few differences between this retreat and the last one in regards to food:
1) We will not be doing a juice fast for 3 days
2) Instead of 100% raw the entire time, we will be detoxing all day with raw foods and then eating healthy cooked dinners each night.
However, the retreat will still be hugely detoxing!! We think it's one of the most AMAZING ways to reset or recharge your life and start on a good path. We think you will definitely feel results of the detox as most people are not eating this many raw foods or getting THIS many dense nutrients in one week. Plus, your body will be taking a break from sugar, holiday foods!, junk foods, chemicals, processed foods, dairy, gluten, caffeine, and unhealthy fats.
Let's break down the detoxing aspects of our meals:
- The order of our foods will be important. Oil pulling first helps the mouth process all the natural detoxing it did during the night. Beginning the day nice and early with Oil Pulling and Lemon Water helps the body process all the natural detoxing that went on while you are sleeping and kickstarts the digestive system.
- Green Juice every early morning will be KEY - not only do you get a super dose of powerfully detoxing ingredients, by consuming it in a liquid form you continue the "fast" from the night time, allowing your body to spend less time digesting and more time repairing and detoxing the body.
- The mid-morning Green Smoothie continues this effect by providing something very easy to digest and rich in live nutrients and detoxing fruits and vegetables.
- Lunch will be 100% raw. Like the juice and smoothie before, eating raw fruits and vegetables helps the body get more nutrients (we lose about 30% of the nutrients by cooking) and helps alkalize the body which is when healing, weight loss, and detoxification are more likely to occur.
- Dinner (cooked and full of vegetables) will be very healthy and free from sugars and processed foods we are all so used to. This is the kind of "long term" detoxing that we hope you will bring back with you. I love what eating raw food for a concentrated period of time can do for you, but for many, it can be so time consuming that they just give up. When I came down to Ecuador, I knew I had a little weight to lose (this is Danny speaking), but you never could have convinced me it would be 30 pounds. And although some of that was aided by the raw food retreat we attended and the 30-day raw food challenge we accepted, 15 lbs of it had come off before we ever attended the retreat simply by cutting out all the processed foods I used to eat during my work day.
We want you to feel like the diet you are having at the retreat is something you can take home with you and replicate. We want it to be less of a special 7-day thing, and more of a lifestyle change. This is where true health begins.
So, for that reason, our dinners will be simple, healthy, and delicious....they will be designed to show you what your long-term-post-retreat detox can look like. They will be designed to help us all learn how to respect these wonderful bodies we have.
We will still have other activities focused on cleansing/detoxing. On a few of the nights, we will be watching educational movies focusing on the power of detoxing and eating healthy in order to experience positive change in your life. And we will be having a class from our Raw Foods Consultant, Tony Spencer. Plus, our yoga, breathing exercises, and meditations will be focused on aiding the cleansing and healing of your body and mind.
So, is this retreat less focused on detoxing? No. The detox will not be as drastic, but it is still one of the key focuses of the week. We aim to provide a VERY healthy environment for you. And, if weight loss is a goal, I think our planned diet will unquestionably aid you in that.
It's a great way to start the year. Can't wait to see you there!
If you'd like to learn more about our retreat, click here, or if you'd like to sign up, click here.