The vibrancy of these fruits are exactly how fresh and bright I feel. I am over the moon thrilled this Monday afternoon. I feel like I’m looking at a new me! Wait. What? A new me? Who’s the old me? Didn’t even know there was an old me. Oh, the struggle of life is so real. It’s live and in living color, let me tell you. Today’s a good day because I hopped on the scale before I could sip on that long-awaited café con leech and it read 121. The scale smiled. I smiled. My desk chair smiled.
I’ve never been happier to be 121.
And that’s because I was just 121 lbs. 9 weeks ago. Actually, 119 to be exact. And then I gained 10 pounds with the literal blink of an eye.
Why a big deal? Well, contrary to what it may seem, I’m really, really short. I’m peanut kind of short, boasting all of 5’1″. Some call it vertically challenged. I call it awesomeness… Well, I did. My short stature and compact torso means I have a super low threshold of carrying any extra weight. I keep that in mind almost every day while cooking, testing, tasting, serving, traveling, etc… but life happens. And in this case, life got the best of me. But now I have the best of life.
Let me backtrack. That month I spent in Europe last November resulted in so many wonderful things, including a net weight loss of 7 pounds from all the walking I enjoyed in 6 cities. It was great. I hadn’t felt that amazing in about three years. All of my clothes fit beautifully and I was managing my eating far better. But I returned on Thanksgiving Day and though I moderated myself and ate really well that night, I quickly let myself go. By December 1st, I was eating every pastry and traditional meal my Mom was preparing for the holidays. I ate things I crave for but have control over and totally gloss over. Turrón (nougat), cheese cake, eggnog, birthday cake, and things I wouldn’t even consider intoxicating my body with.
By Jan 19th, I had gained it all back, and some.
And then I went to Israel just three weeks ago, where I indulged in everything put in front of me. I averaged about 4,500 calories a day. And I wasn’t walking as much as I did in Europe. I was sinning on so many levels, but the food was so incredibly irresistible, I figured I’d deal with it, eventually.
During a FaceTime conversation with my sister, I broke down. I realized how much I’d spiraled in the wrong direction. My sis reassured me it was part stress, part amazing eating, part this job of mine to eat all the time. But I hit the point of no return.
She said she’d help and had the perfect solution. I’m not a skeptic, but emotionally, I just wanted to eat more and mute anything she was offering. She came across this 10 day smoothie cleanse on Facebook. She told me we’d do this cleanse as soon as I got back. I committed to doing it with with her… And all that did was dish me a license to continue eating aimlessly through Israel, dismissing nothing and savoring every bit of every dish I was introduced to. I ate dessert like I’ve never. And it was glorious.
In total, I gained 10 solid pounds between Thanksgiving Day and Jan.29th.
Hardly believable, but so painfully true.
My sis picked me up from the airport last Friday afternoon — detox tea in hand. She was so serious and I was so anxious to have my beloved espresso.
I got home and she had a smoothie waiting for me. She was so serious and I was so wanting to dig in to the halva I had so carefully trekked 6 days with in a perfectly packed container.
This 10 day green day smoothie cleanse is the truth, colloquially speaking. 3 smoothies a day, mostly greens, of course. Limited snacks in between. Loads of water. No coffee. No added sugars. No cheating.
It’s a cleanse. Not a diet. If you look at it that way, you won’t be as successful. My immediate and urgent interest was in detoxing my body from the gluttonous style of eating I had been so recklessly been doing for 9 weeks. I wanted to badly to regain control of my eating. I made that my goal. If I stuck to the strict regiment, I imagined I could lose weight the way so many people on the dedicated Facebook page said.
I suppose there’s some science behind it, but I can’t say. I simply trusted my sister and others’ reactions and committed to it.
And so I started and day 1 sucked. Royally. I had to eliminate everything I was so eager to having again. My coffee, my morning poached eggs with truffle salt, my midday dark chocolate, my mom’s chicharos.
I snuck in one shot of unsweetened espresso but completed the day.
And then I got a crazy migraine on day 2. And again on day 3.
But my mother and sis were doing it, 3 days in the lead, and offered comedic support. Apparently, headaches are a side effect of an effective cleanse. I kept my eyes on the prize!
You have to have support. There’s simply no way anyone who cooks and eats for a living could do this alone.
Day 9. Struggling. I mean some serious cries for real food! I couldn’t fail with 24 hours left. So I drank tea, smuggled 3 tablespoons of unsalted peanut butter, text my sister with an SOS, and went to bed early.
And then day 10. Glorious day 10 which was yesterday.
My scaled read 121, a whole 8-9 pounds lost! Success!
I did not have faith but I will tell you I couldn’t be more excited to drink a darn green smoothie! I feel lighter, more energetic, internally balanced, and surprisingly, not craving all those foods I was crying for 10 days ago. And I can fit comfortably in my clothes again; some which I couldn’t even look at.
I still have a few more pounds to go but for me it’s a lifestyle change. It’s about loving and respecting my body and mind. I want to get back to those days of my early 20s when I was incredibly fit and put my social calendar aside to work out. This is a great start.
This is Day 1. A smoothie made mostly of spinach. Make sure the fruits are sweet enough unless you like stevia. And the flaxseed, while fatty, gives every smoothie a great buttery, toasty taste.
Now, let’s be honest. There are some major downsides here. But most of all, the incredibly different change in my pH balance. I woke up this morning, counting down the minutes to make it to my stove to make some espresso. All to make it, sip it, and sink my chair. It wasn’t good. In fact, it was acidic and borderline undrinkable. Instantly, I was incredibly sad. But the benefits outweighed the bad.
I got my old me back. Well, almost. Definitely pre-Thanksgiving Day. And my peace of mind, emotional happiness, and health are worth every bit of missed dinners these past 10 days.
Need a recharge? Try this. You’ll love yourself all over again.
*I did this for myself and no other reason with no association with the book’s author or publishing company. I won’t publish the recipe b/c I didn’t ask for permission from the book author, but you can Google it.
Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.