Another example of how easily I get distracted and forget to finish something great that I started. Here’s a piece I wrote 2 years ago that I dug up…
Mar 2015 — Edited on April 2017
As I begin to pack away my winter clothes and change my bed linings in preparation for spring, I’ve also turned my attention to the natural changes happening in my body. I ask myself, “How can I help my body get rid of all the fat built up this past winter and any the toxins that are preventing the natural release?” The natural answer was a true and complete cleanse.
Around this time last year, I went on a smoothie cleanse, where I kicked off each day with a detoxing smoothie with whole lemons, celery, cucumbers, ground up flax seed, green tea powder and berries. I also coupled a carb-free diet with hot yoga, strength training and running. That routine actually ended up becoming a daily routine for me. I was pleasantly surprised but it definitely helped keep the winter “coat” away. Here’s the look-back to last year if you’re interested in reading about it.
A lot has happened in the last month – Holy Ship (which is a 3-day EDM cruise in the Bahamas), snowboarding weekend at Killington, bachelorette/bridal party, the flu… all of which have contributed to a disruption to my sleep cycle, leading to bad eating habits, which resulted in less energy and less working out… in the end, a exact recipe to packing on the pound. Fun? Yes. Sustainable? Absolutely not. So how do I kick myself back into a healthy life style again? 3 days to spring and I raid Trader Joe’s health sections for supplements.
I found two items this past weekend which I’ve been since Monday morning. Trader Joe’s Complete Body Cleanse Kit and Organic Yerba Mate tea
Complete Body Cleanse Kit
It consists of 3 bottles of tablets and capsules. 1 for liver, 1 for digestive and 1 for fiber. The sizes of the digestive tablet is really big, and you need to swallow 3 of it the first week and 2 the second week. The liver one is small and fiber one is normal sized. If you weren’t a pro at swallowing capsules before, you’ll definitely have some trouble. I wonder what would it taste like if I just chewed the digestive ones up. The quantity for the fiber one is also over the top, but I think you can open them up and blend it into a smoothie or something. I will attempt those alternative options and update tomorrow… Anyway, you can read all about the product here. I also searched for other blogs that have written on the experience and found 2 that were from a couple of years ago. I guess this cleanse has been around for some time now… Anyway…
Definitely not in a good state when I woke up. Since I didn’t eat much during the day before and had wine plus too much food at dinner, I just felt sick to my stomach the first morning of the cleanse. On top of that, it was also that time of the month so… not a great morning. I couldn’t let anything stop me from my cleanse anymore, I was already pretty upset with the way I was treating my body; I definitely needed to start taking better care with what I put in my stomach…
So, I take 4 Fiber caps with half a bottle of Poland Spring water (normal size). I skip the gym and go straight to work. I had gone to the bathroom once before leaving my apartment, no change there. But when I got to work and had my first cup of Trader Joe’s Organic Yerba Mate Tea, that the stomach gurgling started. Let’s just say I was uncomfortable all day and all the normal body function you would expect from stomach gurgling happened very frequently that day. I wasn’t sure at that point if it was my choice of food the day before or the fiber/tea that’s causing all the disruptions… Looking back now, I’m thinking it’s all the simple carbs I had the night before that was reacting with the supplements. I hadn’t had that reaction since and all I’ve been doing differently is avoiding simple carbs.
I didn’t feel hungry all day until 5 in the afternoon, to which I addressed it with a light lunch of arugula, chicken, beet, artichoke, red pepper, asparagus, and mushroom salad with lemon juice and red wine vinegar dressing. After a late night at work, I went home around 7:30 and decided to go for a 4 mile run. It was an exhausting run and my calves haven’t hurt like that in a long time. A bit nervous about that, but hopefully it was just a one-time thing. Exhausted and thirsty, I get home and make myself a protein shake with soy milk, matcha, sugar-free protein powder and a pinch of tumeric. White tea is also suppose to be good for detoxing so I make myself some hot water and tea. A shower and some fussing later, I’m ready for bed. At this point, I downed a ton of tea with my large dose of pills – 8 to be exact. Probably not the best idea to have so much water before bed…
So much better than day 1… I wake up to an urgent bathroom trip. A very healthy amount of pee and waste flushed out later, I’m feeling ten pounds lighter. I actually made myself breakfast, which I’m usually not afforded the luxury to do. I’m usually rushing to the gym in the morning. I had an egg white omelette seasoned with garlic and tumeric powder, slightly salt-and-peppered. I also decide to make sauteed curry cauliflower, which made my apartment smell divine.
Arriving at the office at a leisurely time of 9:10, I down my fiber caps (having forgotten to do so in the morning), make yerba mate tea and start working, happier than I was on the first day. The only downside was a soreness in my calves… Luckily I make my way to hot yoga after work. For lunch, I had baked salmon, arugula, and the cauliflower I made in the morning. The meal didn’t last me as long as I would have liked and so when everyone started snacking on chips and dry roasted edamame, I washed the box of strawberries I had picked up in the morning and ate that. It was surprisingly filling.
75 minutes of hot yoga later, my craving reared its ugly head and I start to want to have pizza, chicken and rice, cheesecake, chips and so forth. Instead, I settle for a Quest chocolate chip cookie dough protein bar. After consuming the whole bar and allowing time to elapse as I make my way home, the hunger and craving was completely gone. I would go as far as recommend Quest as a meal replacement bar. It’s relatively clean and made perfectly to trigger the sensation of fullness with 17g of fiber and 20g of protein. I make sure I drink plenty of water with the bar due to the high fiber and protein content, so another quarter of liter of water in before arriving home.
8 caps in before bedtime with some red chrysanthemum tea ends the day.
I’m really sad I ended the piece on Day 2 because even I’m interested in finding out what happened to the other days that followed until I finished that cleanse kit. But if memory serves me right, I finished that kit and kept up the same regime for 2 weeks. I also didn’t mention this was my pre-Coachella prep, which worked surprisingly well. I believe I had about a month to get back into shape and with the help of hot yoga, I was able to.
Funny how life repeats itself without intentionally making an effort. This is year 2017 and I’m once again back at hot yoga everyday, expect this time, it really is just for myself. I can’t say my vanity is nonexistent, but it sure is a hell’a lot less.
Health is more important than looking hot for the sake of looking hot. Obviously it doesn’t hurt to look amazing in the process of getting healthy, but a health body comes in many shapes and sizes and there shouldn’t be one standard. As long as I’m happy and I feel great, that’s all it matter.
My new regiment is eating whatever I want in small portions and exercising each day. After all these years of trying different diets and establish various routines, I finally realized the ultimate level of dieting is obtaining forgiveness and patience with your own body. It’s okay to have a piece of cake or a bag of chips as long as it’s what you really want. If what you really want is to be happy and so you always turn to food, then maybe supplement it with something else, like yoga, a friend’s company, a walk in the park or a good book.
At some point, I realized I would always gain weight when I’m miserable or unhappy. Maybe I thought being miserable gave me an excuse to eat poorly and be lazy, but that only worsened the situation. Challenging as it may be to get out of that vicious cycle, you need to know when and how to do so. Maybe it’s changing your current situation, no matter what it takes. In the end, I realized getting healthy isn’t about dieting, but readjusting a mindset.
All I needed was to learn how to take better care of myself and make a conscious effort to do so—to do what makes me happy. That was the true cleanse.
If you managed to read this far, thank you and take care! I mean it! 🙂