Jan 18, 2007|
2007 may be the Year of the Pig, but that doesn’t mean you have to look and feel like one. If you spent most of 2006 moping around with a cigarette in one hand and a deep fried chicken leg in the other, then follow me on this eight-fold path and uncover a healthier, fitter and radiant New You in the New Year!
If you indulged too much over the festive season and are feeling a bit bummed out, it might be time for an intestinal spring cleaning with, in the words of Homer Simpson, “a cool, refreshing pina colonic.”
If having water pumped into your rectum sounds about as much fun as amoebic dysentery in hell, read on. Colonics are actually painless affairs, but are highly effective in cleaning the toxins, fecal debris, inorganic matter and other nasty stuff from the body. With the aid of herbal nutrients and a cleansing diet, they can be a powerful way to release poisons and change negative thought patterns, allowing a new energetic and cheeky you to emerge.
The tranquil haven of Rasayana Retreat (57 Sukhumvit Soi 39 [Soi Prom Mitr], 02-662-4803/-5. Open daily 9am-8pm. www.rasayanaretreat.com) is offering a variety of cleansing programs and treatments to kick-start 2007. Their 1-Day Detox (B4,990) includes a colonic, yoga class, detox massage, ear candling session and cleansing meal. Their 7-day Rejuvenation Package (B14,000) includes three colonics and all herbal supplements.
Hydrohealth (4/F, Erawan Bangkok, 02-250-7800. Open daily 10am-8pm. www.hydrohealth.co.th) offers special 1-day (B8,100) and 3-day (B17,500) detox programs which use colonics, massage and infrared sauna to zap toxins. You’ll need to mention that you’re a BK reader.
Get your legs behind your head in 37 degrees? No sweat. Devised by Yogiraj Bikram Choudhury, “Hot Yoga” is a series of 26 postures which are practiced in rooms heated to 37°. It’s acquiring a legion of celebrity followers like Michael Jackson, Madonna and Brooke Shields…and maybe the New You in 2007!
According to proponents, the heated environment helps protect muscles, thin blood, promote detox, improve strength, encourage weight loss and, somewhat paradoxically, keeps the body from overheating. It also makes you smell like a wet collie, so unless you want unlimited standing space on the BTS, shower well after the 90-minute sessions.
Postures focus mainly on the spine and fans say they’re a lot more manageable than other forms of yoga. According to Rena, an instructor at Absolute Yoga Studio, “Yoga can be whatever you want it to be depending on the effort and focus you invest in your practice.” And for any men who may be reticent about joining a class, Rena has some encouraging advice: “Yoga’s not about flexibility,” she insists, “and there’s lots of women in spandex.”
Absolute Yoga (4/F, Amarin Plaza, Ploenchit Rd., 02-252-4400. Open Mon-Fri 7am-7:45pm, Sat-Sun 9am-4:30pm. www.absoluteyogabangkok.com) has six studios around the city and packages for first-timers (gets you one class a day) start at B2, 950 per month.
Yoga Elements (23/F, Vanissa Bldg., 29 Soi Chitlom, 02-655-5671. Open Mon-Thu 7am-9pm, Fri-Sun 9am-6pm. www.yogaelements.com) offers unlimited classes to new comers for B2,900 a month.
It’s easy, I’ve done it loads of times.
“Tobacco...There is no herb like it under the canopy of heaven.” wrote Charles Kingsley in the 19th century, and he was probably right. If you’ve made many half-assed attempts to give up this insidious drug, think about this: Allen Carr, anti-smoking guru and author of The Easy Way to Give Up Smoking died of lung cancer last November. Maybe 2007 should be your smoke free-choke free year?
KIK in conjunction with the Travmin Bangkok Medical Center (8/F, Alma Link Bldg., 25 Soi Chitlom, 02 655-1024/5. Open Mon-Fri 9am-5pm. www.kikasia.com) have a choice of 3 programs to give you the best chance of quitting. The basic Silver Package (B9,990) includes a health check, advice manual, medication and support program to help get you through the tough times.
Gym’ll fix it.
Last year your fat thighs were no big deal because they were hidden by your stomach. But no excuses in 2007: Take matters into your own chubby hands and join a gym.
For the uninitiated, gyms can be intimidating places full of deafening techno, hardcore exercise freaks, confusing machinery and irritatingly beautiful people; but don’t be scared. Gyms are, in fact, a safe and fun place to get fit, providing free consultations, extensive equipment, personal trainers and individualized fitness programs to help you get the most out of your workout. And with many city gyms also offering a sweaty selection of classes like Tai-Bo, Pilates, aerobics and circuit training, soon you’ll be one of the irritatingly beautiful people.
Cascade Club and Spa (6-7/F, The Ascott Sathorn Bldg., South Sathorn Rd., 02-676-6969, Open Mon-Fri 6am-10pm, Sat-Sun 8am-9pm) is a high-class fitness facility on the 7th floor of The Ascott on Sathorn. Membership costs B36,000 per annum and includes unlimited use of steam, sauna and swimming pool.
Fitness First have 13 clubs around Bangkok all starting at B2,600 per month. Facilities include cardio-vascular training, spinning and group aerobics studios, steam-rooms and sauna. Their executive branch (Bio House, Soi Sukhumvit Soi 39, 02-262-0520. Open Mon-Fri 6am-10pm, Sat-Sun 8am-9pm) also has a swimming pool.
Obesity is, quite literally, a growing epidemic in Thailand, and according to WHO, more than 1 billion adults are currently overweight worldwide. If you’ve eaten all the pies and now rank among the heavyweights, make 2007 the year you rediscover your waistline. There are several cafes and restaurants around town that help make eating out a healthful affair.
Rasayana Living Food Café (Sukhumvit Soi 39 [Soi Prom Mitr], 02-662-4803) offers enzyme and vitamin packed healthful food. All meals are vegetarian, raw, and free of sugar, wheat or dairy produce.
Tamarind Café (Soi Sukhumvit 20, 02-663-7421, Open Mon-Fri 3pm-midnight, Sat, Sun 10am-midnight) dishes up healthy and delicious vegetarian creations from all corners of the globe.
Anotai (976/17 Rim Klong Samsaen Rd., 02-641-5366/-70) serves health-concious Thai vegetarian dishes along with some salads and pastas.
Get pummeled and scrubbed and wrapped in mud—all in the name of beauty.
Contrary to what some men like to think, skin is actually the largest organ in the body. And it’s responsible for all kinds of thankless jobs like respiration, excretion, absorbing oxygen and exhaling poisons. In the unlikely event that your entire body was somehow covered in spray paint, you wouldn’t get enough oxygen through breathing alone to sustain life. So give your hard-working, long-suffering skin a break this year, and spend a few hours in one of Bangkok’s rejuvenating spas.
Aside from the usual Thai and aromatherapy massage, most spas also offer therapeutic body wraps and scrubs. During a wrap the body is covered with mud or oils and then wrapped up like a hot-dog in plastic, and sometimes heated with a thermo blanket. Wraps help release toxins, reduce cellulite, stimulate circulation and nourish the skin. Scrubs effectively exfoliate and invigorate.
The folks at Devarana Spa (The Dusit Thani Bangkok, 946 Rama 4 Rd., 02-636-3596. Open daily 9am-10pm. www.devaranaspa.com)—voted Bangkok’s best spa by BK readers for the past four years—have come up with a tasty new treatment for 2007: 129 Mix and Match Scrubs. From B2,100, scrub-ees can create their own recipe from nine edible ingredients including chocolate, almond, coconut, coffee and cinnamon. So why not get covered in all the sinful things forbidden on your New Year’s diet?
Divana Nurture Spa (8 Soi Sukhumvit 35, 02-261-4818/9. Open Mon-Fri 11am-11pm, Sat-Sun 10am-11pm) is now offering the 3-hour Intimate Elegance treatment, which includes foot soak, body massage, aromatic steam, body scrub and floral milky bath at B3,950, so that you can clean and refreshing from head to toe.
Are you so lazy that you hate even emptying the trash in the recycle bin on your computer? Is “running late” the only exercise you get? If you have neither the time nor inclination to spend hours pumping iron at the gym, then speed wellness could be just the ticket. The Bodhi (20/F, 253 Asoke Bldg., 02-640-8090. Open daily 7am-9pm and Unit 403/4, 4/F, Erawan Bangkok, 02-250-7882. Open daily 10am-8pm. www.thebodhi.com), Thailand’s first such center, uses cutting-edge technology from Germany (used by the German soccer team, no less) that makes getting fit a quick, and relatively painless affair.
“People are busy, busy, busy, so we make it speedy,” explains Ruben, the center’s friendly “Master Trainer.” And speedy it most certainly is. Using electricity currents, vacuum and vibrations, futuristic machines like the Hypoxi L250 Trainer, the Vacunaut, and the VM 400 give effective work outs in as little as 15 minutes. Membership costs B20,000 for one month, or B50,000 for three.
A svelte, gym-honed physique isn’t much use if you’re so ugly even the tide won’t take you out. Nature often needs a helping hand, and sometimes it should be holding lipstick, so put the finishing touch-ups to the New You with a professional makeover.
Cosmetic consultants design a look based on your skin type and color, and can recommend shades to complement your tone, dark circles and zits. They also offer application tips to improve your war-painting and can help you to update your look using samples from new season collections.
Makeovers with major cosmetic brands can be pricey, but BSC, Arty and Tell Me offer free make-up consultations in Robinson stores citywide; try Robinson Silom (2 Silom Rd., 02-266-3340/-50. Open daily 10.30am-10pm. www.robinson.co.th.)
This goes for you guys, as well. Arty is popular among gay and metrosexual men “because of its many shades of pressed powder,” one store manager told us. Go on, don’t be shy.