Or, Blue Print Cleanse Day 1.
Anyone who knows me knows I fret about every morsel that goes into my body, but I have never met a sweet I haven’t liked. I’ve been known to eat bite sized candy bars or a cookie after every meal (lately, even including breakfast). As my sweet tooth raged on and the scale inched a little higher than I liked, I decided it was time to detox.
After my last work trip to our season photo shoot, I came home feeling bloated and knowing that being around food constantly had taken its tool on my body. I sat on the plane paralyzed in fear, Googling at-home detoxes and cleanses. After deciding to try eating mostly raw for a few days (it lasted about the first day until I went to the movies and ate through a bag of popcorn), I knew it wouldn’t last. Luckily the weight came right off, but then Thanksgiving, Holiday parties, Christmas, and New Year’s all seemed to align this year.
A few days before New Year’s I knew I had to get myself back on track, but I was afraid the damage was too much for me to do on my own. I started researching cleanses – and discovered a blog entry about the Blue Print Cleanse. I read her blog, hooked. I researched it for a little bit longer and before I knew it, my American Express number suddenly entered itself on the website and I had nearly $200 of juices set to arrive at my house in three day’s time.
There are three levels of the cleanse – renovation, foundation, and excavation, or levels 1-3. Level one was described as for the meat and potatoes eater – not really me. I have an affinity for bacon and the occasional steak or pork chop, but other than that I really only eat fish, veggies, and grains. I decided level two, the not-quite vegan but active lifestyle level, was right for me. And at the end of day one, I’m glad I went with this level that involved an extra green juice and not a gross beet juice. I’m not Dwight Schrute, after all.
I didn’t do the best job detoxing because I started three days after New Year’s Eve (well, today, if you are reading this January 4th). After a champagne fueled night, the only thing I wanted in my system was carbs and bacon. You’re supposed to wean yourself off of food, but unless I am going through a break-up or someone died or I’m seriously depressed, my obsession with food starts to take hold and I’ll have a piece of bread with peanut butter in my hand twenty minutes after swearing off carbs or gluten. Instead, I ate mostly vegetables, a little gluten-free pasta, and smoothies in the two days leading up to the cleanse. I also cheated and had some dark chocolate, because I am a choco-holic.
The morning started off well enough – luckily I had a filling coconut mango smoothie the night before (I will post my recipe later, once thinking about food doesn’t fill me with disdain), so I wasn’t really hungry. I made hot water to have with lemon on my way to work. I decided that as I am always hungry, I needed to space out my juices so I could hit all my craving times, which meant starting a little later in the morning.
The green juice (1, 3, and 5 in Level 2) is not very filling and was not a satisfactory breakfast for 9:30 a.m. I typically get ravenous again around 10:30 or 11, and eat a piece of fruit.The green juice tasted terrible at first, but after being used to oatmeal, smoothies, or Greek yogurt with fruit, I think my body is just trained to want sweets in the morning. After a while I didn’t mind and was happy the first juice was over.
Today everyone around me at work was talking about food. There were Tupperware containers of cookies, including chocolate gobs. There were boxes of chocolates sitting next to me from vendors. I knew my desk snack drawer had K-cups, candy canes, pretzels, and Luna Bars, all of my favorite treats. I literally thought I was going to shrivel up and die or worse, binge eat on everything around me. I knew if I was ever doing a juice cleanse again, I was doing it in sub-Saharan Africa where I could juice cleanse completely free of distractions. Then a bomb shell hit at work and stress took over my hunger so I was able to have my ‘lunch’ around 1.
I decided I should think of my first juice as breakfast, the second as lunch, two snacks (3,4), five as dinner, and the last as desert. This was a good mind trick for me today.
Lunch, or the juice that consisted of my lunch, was PAM, or pineapple, apple, mint juice. This was actually my favorite, because I am used to having fruit for my morning snack. It took me a while to drink it because I was working on things at running back and forth talking to people, which worked well for me because it kept me satisfied until around 3 or 4, when I realized I should drink another juice.
The second green juice went down pretty fast and it was unmemorable. This was the point of the day that I had today that would lead me to stress eat, even though I am not a stress eater – that’s how poorly I felt. Instead, I was forced to stress drink juice, which was perfect.
Oh, did I mention I was also chugging water and green tea throughout all of this? I was feeling a little sluggish so I had a second cup of tea, which I never do. I had about 72 ounces of water just while at work today, which is not unheard of for me. I may actually drink too much water. So I am used to being pretty full of liquids.
Around 5, I was still at work and realized I had 3 more juices to drink if I wanted to be in bed early (for a Friday, and in general, but I have a nuts Saturday and week ahead so I need to lay low), so I had the spicy lemonade. It was good, nothing to right home about – it was a nice way to break up the green juices and I guess you could say I’m looking forward to drinking it again tomorrow.
I had the last green juice in my car driving home and at first I was so full of liquids that I didn’t want to finish, but as soon as I did I was hungry. I was driving past signs for pizza places. I had to stop and get gas and just imagined all the gas station donuts that wanted to be eaten. Then I saw a group of three girls looking less than healthy leaving said gas station, snacks in tow, and felt empowered to keep drinking my juices.
I got home (well, to my Grandparents, because I have an 8 a.m. hair appointment and only trust two people in the world with my hair – my colorist and stylist at a salon in their town), and immediately had to have my cashew milk that everyone talked about. The calorie content on the back depressed me and I didn’t want to drink it, but treats do have calories. I knew it was important for the process and I enjoyed every last sip, even drinking it through a straw to make it last a little longer.
So tonight I am 1/3 of the way there, but honestly I am sad that even after this, I have 4 days of restrictive eating (well, only two really hard days of restrictive eating). You can have some cheat foods, like celery or 1/4 of an avocado, but I didn’t really feel tempted and knew I would be cheating myself if I did that. I began to get a headache at the end of the day, but it could have been my day at work that caused it. I wanted to get a run in or a yoga class today, but that did not happen either. I plan on waking up early tomorrow to run before my day full of errands and packing for a work trip. I hear I am supposed to have more energy, so we will see how that works out for me.