A Juicy Week

AsScreen Shot 2015-01-05 at 9.54.16 PM I shared in a recent post, I took advantage of being home from work for a couple of weeks and did a juice cleanse over the holiday season. While I shared some thoughts mid-cleanse, I thought I’d bring some more juice-inspired thoughts now that I’m done.

I only craved subconsciously
Funny enough, I didn’t really have a feeling of being hungry beyond the first day (and even that wasn’t so bad). I had emotional cravings to actually eat something, but not a physical need. And my energy levels were fine, including during quite a bit of exercise. The one time that wasn’t true was on day 6 when I was noticeably tired. There are so many factors that can lead to that feeling, and it’s weird that I’d be ok the day before and the day after if it was the juice diet alone doing it.

What’s weirder is what happened in my dreams that night. I don’t usually dream about food, but I did in a big way. My dream was focused around trying to meet people at a doughnut shop, but they were all going out of business (within minutes, for some reason), and were giving away all of their food and coffee for free.  So I went from shop to shop to wait for my friend and ate a ton of sweet, baked goodness and drank lots of coffee.  Then I found my friend on the street, and went to a hotel hospitality suite as we were apparently there for some work event, and the suite was stocked for breakfast.  I had these amazing baked egg things that had bacon and cheesiness baked into them (they looked like slices of coffee cake), and then around the corner were all these cakes and desserts. I got tiramisu, and kept eating each piece off my plate so I could put another one on it. And of course more coffee.

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 9.54.28 PMHilarious, right? I’ve never had a dream like that in my life. It was horrific and amazing at the same time.

On a better note, I definitely noticed that I get full more easily now, which will have obviously benefits to future weight maintenance.

Cleansing slowed down, toned sped up
Unsurprisingly, as the process went on, my need to stay near a bathroom diminished. So did my weight loss. I lost most of the weight in the first three days, and then hovered around the same mark after that.  That’s fine as I wasn’t trying to keep losing weight, and I ended up in a good, healthy place while undoing the damage of holiday eating and working at a company that always has food around (we seem to cater every meeting, and by “we seem” I mean “my body looks like”).

What did improve was my body fat. I wrote about how my numbers were increasing over the first few days.  I started in the 12.5% range, and had gotten as high as 13.7%. That came down to 10.5% the morning after I was complete. That’s great news. Even better, my first day back at work, I happened to grab a pair of pants that are, as my wife says, my “skinny pants.” They’re not meant to be tight on me, but they are the tightest pair I own. Before the juicing, they were definitely on the snugger side of fitting, whereas wearing them now as I type this, I don’t feel constrained in them.

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 9.55.11 PMI’m game to play again
So my overall take on it was that it was really not that hard. You just have to get out of your own way with fear and reasons why it will be tough. Just do it, and you’ll be fine. It’s definitely much easier to do when you can take a break from your regular routine and job, and even better if you can separate from those not doing it. I can see sequestering yourself or doing it with your spouse/significant other being the best approach. Not having temptations around you (either in the form of someone else chewing their kale or in the form of just sitting in the pantry for you to sneak in and eat) can make a huge difference

I definitely plan to do this again. I’m debating making this my weekend routine, or perhaps one weekend a month.  That will depend on the need. I also am thinking about times when I’ll be alone so I have less temptation – for example, if my wife and son go somewhere over his February break while I have to stay home and work.  I can definitely bring juice to work and be tough with myself for a few short days.  I can then just tape off the pantry and not have to be tempted by my son eating something delicious (my wife eats super healthy all the time, so she’s easy to be around – not that my son doesn’t eat healthy foods, but they’re yummier than what she or I normally eat and certainly yummier than drinking collard greens).

How about you? Do you have a desire to cleanse your system of toxins built up over the years? Do you want to hit the reset button on your body and give your digestive tract a break? Do you want to start living a healthier life and give your body the respect it deserves by fueling it with what it actually needs? Can you do this and enlighten.your.body? I bet you can.

About bryan falchuk

bryan falchuk is the founder of newbodi.es, a certified personal trainer, behavior change specialist and the best-selling author of "Do a Day". bryan coaches people on their whole health - the physical, mental and emotional combination of wellness that we need to thrive and change our lives.

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