Inside the dry sauna, I sit patiently watching the clock pass the nine minute mark. I try to stay twelve minutes but the heat is rushing over my entire body like a blanket. I feel like I am melting but I remain calm in order that I can prepare for the shock of the cold tub.
I watch the still water in the plunge and without thinking about it, I submerge myself. The 18℃ water rushes around my body and without time to think your body is adjusting to a fast cooling. I lay back and submerge my neck and head watching the sky.The water is cold but I am comfortable as long as I stay still. The tub’s water is rushing in at colder temperatures to compensate. It is a chilly moment in time, an ice-cube moment.
The cold water immediately constricts blood vessels and decreases metabolic activity, as the cold water causes your blood to move to your organs to keep them warm. Your blood network is working rapidly and flushing out toxins. Can you imagine the blood flow, it is tremendous and the body works hard to pump your blood, a blood rush!
Once the skin is no longer in contact with the cold source, the underlying tissues warm up, causing a return of faster blood flow, which helps return the byproducts of cellular breakdown to the lymph system for efficient recycling by the body.
Researchers believe that the increased metabolic rate, which results from the body’s attempt to warm itself up, activates the immune system and releases more white blood cells in response.
When the body is slowly cooled, the effects of heat are reversed the heart calms, sweat pores close, dilated blood vessels contract and body temperature returns to normal.Your capillaries dilate permitting increased flow of blood to the skin in an attempt to draw heat from the surface and disperse it inside the body.