So, last week I realized I’m about 4 months out from the wedding, my dress will be arriving soon, and I’m woefully behind on any sort of weight loss regimen. Le sigh. That’s when my occasional-diet-fanatic-and-sometimes-vegan maid of honor chimed in asking if I’d have any interest in joining her for a juice cleanse.
Truth? No. But I have even less interest in having fat arms in my wedding pictures.
So, after reading what felt like half of the world wide web that relates to the topic, I signed up for the Blueprint Cleanse. The cleanse itself is fairly straightforward. You pay them (a lot of) money, they overnight you eighteen 16-oz numbered bottles of fresh pressed, unpasteurized juice in a cooler bag, enough for three days. You drink the juice (in numbered order), water, and herbal tea, and that’s it. For bonus points, you can get a colonic, but there’s just no way in hell that’s happening.
Why am I doing this? Just for weight loss? Not exactly. I don’t really expect to lose much weight from the cleanse itself (most folks online report about 5 lbs over the 3 days, mainly water weight). But I do expect to reset my taste buds/cravings/mental attitude so that I’m not constantly craving junk food. And cutting out that crap, and replacing it mainly with vegetables–over the long term, e.g. the remaining four months until my wedding–WILL hopefully result in weight loss.
Now, if you happen to be considering a cleanse yourself, and are reading half the internet to figure out whether to do it or not, let me just say that you’re going to encounter a lot of crap that has absolutely zero science behind it. They’ll talk about “removing toxins” (reality check: your body does that on it’s own. Just think about it, otherwise alcohol would kill you after one crazy night) or “giving your colon a rest” (reality check: your bowels don’t need to rest. They’re not an old school Nintendo system.) And you’ll also encounter a lot of naysayers telling you that juice cleanses MAY cause this or that or whatever, but they also usually are just working on guesswork, or talking about an unstructured program.
Bottom line: if you’re doing a “structured” program, like Blueprint or Cooler Cleanse or any of the other “big name” guys, you’re cutting back to about 1100 calories, barely any fat, and tons of vitamins each day. Should you do it forever? No. Can you do it for a little while to jump start some weight loss? Yep. Ignore the rest of the bullshit the cleanse companies and/or cleanse naysayers try to sell you on.
Anyways, rant aside, today was my first “prep day”. (They recommend you cut out or at least back on meat, dairy, processed foods, caffeine, and replace it all with fruits and vegetables leading up to the cleanse.)
For breakfast, I had half a cantaloupe and maybe 1/2 a cup of pecans. This brought on a realization: unless they’re fried onto a piece of chicken or baked in a pie, I don’t much like pecans. I also downed about 8 oz of green tea (which is allowed on the cleanse.) By 11:30, I was definitely hungry for lunch.
Lunch brought a green salad with tomatoes, kalamata olives, carrots, and cucumbers, topped with a balsamic vinaigrette, with a big glass of water. This was especially depressing, as my work cafeteria was serving up my absolute favorite–mac and cheese. But, I persisted, and stayed content till about 4pm by sipping on more green tea.
At 4, I downed around 20 pistachios and about 20 blueberries. The pistachios, which were salted, were the most delicious thing in the world at that moment, but they only kept me full for another little while. More water ensued.
Around 6, I stuck a sweet potato in foil into the oven, and sauteed a zucchini and two tomatoes with a clove of garlic, olive oil, and Louisiana Hou Sauce. Then I topped it with half and avocado. Again, the most delicious thing in the entire world. I’ll say this–at least the diet it making me appreciate the food I *can* eat. But, once the sweet potato came out of the oven, I realized that much like pecans, sweet potatoes are much better laden in butter and sugar. I nibbled a bit, before ultimately pushing it aside. Still more water.
So, overall today, I think I had about 1000-1100 calories, and at least 96 oz of liquid (either water or tea). I’m not starving, by any means, but the few glimpses of bacon, beer, or gouda in my fridge has me definitely craving already, and I’m already noticing just how much delicious food is prominently displayed on tv.
Tomorrow is another prep day, and then I’ll “do the juice” Friday-Sunday. I’ll report back with how it’s going, and whether I’m losing any weight as I go along. Wish me luck!