30 Day Cleanse Workout

30 Day Challenge Day 5-8

These days have been a breeze. Not a cool breeze on a hot summer’s day, breeze. More like a walk in the park, breeze. Days 4-7 were lined out in the first email giving instructions for the 3 day detox. It was an easy transition from daily smoothies, to more smoothies and a couple small meals. The difficult part was the added snacks. I am not used to eating every 2-3 hours.

I still find it hard to believe that women do this while working a full time job. This is not to say that I am not working. (Please, real estate clients reading this, understand, I am working. But, I have the luxury of working from home with my kitchen (and my bathroom) within a few feet of my office. All ingredients and the appliances needed to create these meals (and they are many) are within my reach. Not to mention I can hop up and make these meals/snacks at any given moment.

The recipes have been wonderful. Easy to follow and quite delicious. The most prominent change thus far for me is the lack of sweet (sugar) in sauces, marinades and such. The cleanse has balance or neutralized my palette and I no longer crave what little sugar I was having before. The smoothies, while they have fruit, have only a little fruit and thus, they are not overly sweet. I don’t even miss it! In fact, I think I like them better this way.

The second hugest thing (in the words of our current President), is the feeling of being satisfied after every meal or snack. Not full. Not bloated. Not hungry. Not wishing for more. Satisfied. What a lovely and contented feeling! I have also found that I eat more slowly. Notably chewing each bite and savoring the texture as much as the flavor. In slowing down, I find that I am done when the food is gone and I do not feel the desire for a second portion.

My will power, having grown by leaps and bounds, now resists the temptation to lick the peanut butter or nutella off the knife when making my son’s lunch every morning. I no longer finish the apple I have sliced simply for because it is there, uneaten, unable to fit in his small lidded bowl that goes in his lunch box. I wash my hands rather than lick my fingers when creamy curry sauce which I am cooking finds its way onto my hands. You might think I am going a bit over board here, but I think it is the reset of a bad habit which had gotten out of hand. One taste leads to a bite, which leads to another, and another. Before I know it I have eaten a small plate before dinner is even served. Now, I am able to eat my full meal, guilt free, knowing I have not sabotaged my waistline for the sake of tasting.

Day 8 kicked off week 2 of the program. With it came new recipes, a new meditation, and a new workout. So far, the recipes I have tried have been delicious! The peanut butter balls are divine and go well with a cup of black coffee in the afternoon. The workout is challenging but not too difficult. I can feel my energy picking up and my waist whittling down. It’s a good day!

30 Day Cleanse Workout

Quickie Day 5

Today was a breeze. The fact that the meals now consist of more than a smoothie and there are snacks makes it easier to get through the day. I still don’t know how women who work outside the home are doing this. I have the luxury of making my breakfast at a reasonable hour and then doing the Pilates workout. My Vitamix makes the smoothies easy peezy too! Can’t imagine taking that to work with me. Let’s just say I am counting my blessings.

I am feeling like the 3 meals and 3 snacks is a bit much and worried I will regain the 4 lbs I lost. I am trying to trust the program and not get on the scale or alter the plan. I am looking forward to adding back more exercise as I am used to doing a bit more. Looks like next week includes a run. YAY!

Tonight’s dinner has sauteed Bok Choy and turkey bacon among other ingredients. I have never had Bok Choy, but the photo on the recipe looks pretty darn good. I am optimistic that I will like it.

Keep on truckin’ peeps!

30 Day Cleanse Workout

New Year, New Me, New You?

In the past I have written New Year’s Goals more so than New Year’s Resolutions. It’s not that I am against resolutions, goals just sit better with me. Whether planning an assignment in school, an agenda for a meeting, a business or life plan, I have always looked at planning as a guideline open to revision. I set a goal, make a plan with activities to reach the goal. The activities and the end goal are adjusted as needed, redefined or scrapped altogether with a new goal in mind.

This year I have not had time yet to sit down and make goals or a plan for the year. It will happen, most likely later this month. I was intrigued by a message I received from a friend on Facebook. She was wondering if I was joining a 30 Day program she had seen, Danette May’s 30 Day Challenge. I responded that I had not seen the challenge but I have done a few of Danette’s workouts. I searched it up and took a look at the plan.

Like many plans you have seen on the internet (formerly called the World Wide Web), it includes 30 days of workouts, a meal plan, and recipes. By paying a small fee you have access to all of these direct to your email inbox. Additionally you have a private Facebook page, for you and the other several thousand women participating, as well as, several mentors there to moderate and motivate. Mainly I was looking for a new 30 day workout plan. I love the workouts I have been doing (21 Day Fix, Jillian’s workout DVD’s and Danette’s Ab Blaster), but I always look to change them up when possible. For my sanity and because I hear it is good for your body as well.

I decided to participate, signed up and paid the fee. Within minutes I had an email welcoming me to the program and inviting me to join the private Facebook page. I did. My excitement popped as I scrolled through a few of the posts. Many women were already posting they had chosen to begin before the initial start date of January 7th, due to work schedules and such. While that wasn’t the pin in my balloon, it did cause a hitch in my step. I scrolled a little more only to find complaints, whines, and quite honestly bitching and moaning.

Mind you, these were women on Day 1, 2 or 3 of the Detox, all of which are drinking a concoction they deem at times unbearable, while eating nothing else. If that wasn’t bad enough, their descriptions of needing to pee every few minutes due to the gallon of water they are taking in, would make anyone wonder how you can do this while working. As much as I wanted to sympathize (I say that because I imagine you expect me to), truthfully I was annoyed with their whining. What did you think when you read: Day 1 Drink 8 oz water with the juice of one half of a lemon, 1 tsp of organic apple cider vinegar and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Breakfast – Smoothie with plain Greek yogurt, spinach, water, berries and chia seeds. Lunch – Smoothie with Coconut water, lime juice, cucumber, pineapple and coconut oil. Follow that up with the apple cider vinegar (ACV) elixir in an hour. You get the idea.

It’s a 3-Day mostly liquid diet that is meant to purge your system! Not to mention you will NOT be drinking your morning latte (could have pulled out one of those never ending descriptions often used in movies or stand up comedy routines), nor are you grabbing a snack on the go from the Costco food court. I would expect a shock to my system for one, to spend a large amount of time in the bathroom, and low energy would make complete sense. The part causing me to second guess my plan to participate was the claims if not keeping some of the elixir down and the inability to find ingredients coupled with the time it was taking to make the smoothies 3 times a day. Now I know why some people just order juices delivered to their door (for much more money).

Thoughts of giving up before I had even begun swirled around in my brain. Then I pulled on my pants and sucked in my albeit not that large belly in order to button them, and determined I would do it! I like my clothes. I want them to fit. And I don’t want a muffin top. I quickly searched for 2 of the most difficult items it seemed for participants to find locally and ordered them on Amazon. Before I could change my mind I hit Place My Order for Cacao powder and nibs (I should add, I was sitting in my car, not even home yet from a strip away, and I had not as of yet read the entire program. I know, crazy!).

I have now printed out the 30 day program, placed the pages in a binder, reviewed and checked off the items I have in my cupboards (or are coming from Amazon tomorrow) and I am not prepared to make a grocery list for the remaining items. Reading through the 3 meals and 2 snacks a day my inner voice kept me going with plenty of encouragement, “You got this!”, “That doesn’t sound too bad”, “You have had a colonoscopy girl, this is going to be a piece of cake!”, and so on. Feeling pretty optimistic I headed downstairs binder in hand. It wasn’t until Tom asked what I was doing, that it dawned on me, “How was I going to do this while maintaining regular dinners for my family?”

Silence.

Hmmm……. the inner me stepped up to the plate again. “Hold on girl, you have plenty of frozen leftovers in the fridge. Tom is an easy going kind of guy who will eat pretty much anything you make (as long as it isn’t fish). And Michael, well he will eat a hot dog or grilled cheese every day if you let him.” I nodded in agreement and opened the freezer to take stock. Plenty of meals to last for the 3 days that I would be eating nothing more than ACV (apple cider vinegar) and smoothies. With a lighter step I walked over and checked out the meals for days 4 and on. I could say enhancing them a little for Tom while maintaining the integrity of the 30 Day Plan for me.

I think I can do this. I know I can try.

So, starting Monday I will be on a 3 Day Cleanse and hopefully will continue for the full 30 day program (with little or no alterations). I shared the idea with a few girlfriends who were over today for our annual Holiday gift exchange and happy hour. Kelly suggested I blog about it. Just know, I will give the good, the bad, and quite possibly, the shitty when it comes to the cleanse and the program.

Leave your questions in the comments. I’ll do my best to answer them, most likely in the next days blog post.

Life After Cancer

A little less of me.

The year began like any other with me writing goals for the year more so than resolutions. Years ago I wrote a blog about New Year’s resolutions. It came about due to so many people’s posts on Facebook about how they didn’t like New Year’s Resolutions or why they thought they were wrong or a waste of time. I personally felt that New Year’s Resolutions were more like goals you set for yourself. Sometimes we achieve our goals and other times we fail. What would life be like without failure? If we never set goals, never try at something, never fail, then what is the point? Why go about our lives day in and day out, year in and year out do the same thing over and over again? What is that quote….. “Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results” – Albert Einstein.  Failure often leads to one trying again or trying something different. At least it can. And so, I firmly believe in setting goals, New Year’s Resolutions, plans, lists, and revising them as needed in order to continue on in life.

I should look back and see what my goals were for 2016. I can’t even imagine what they were. When January 1, 2016 hit I already had three appointments on my calendar. One on January 5th for a biopsy of cells found in my right breast. And one on January 6th for a biopsy of a mass found in my left breast. The third appointment was set for January 11th and it was to find out the results of my biopsies. Although these appointments were in my calendar I set goals for the year. All of which were put on hold come January 11th when we were told I in fact had breast cancer.

The year quickly took on a new agenda which was to do what I needed to do to ensure many more years, decades with my family. As the year went on it continued to take a few turns here and there that were not on our original map. Each turn brought a different treatment, test or procedure. All of which contributed to our ultimate goal of many more years together in the future. I learned many great lessons throughout the year. Some of which included how amazing our friends truly are, how broad and wide our friend circle actually was, how to let others help us rather than us help others, how to receive blessings over and over again, how to allow my body, my mind and my heart time to heal and grieve, and how to accept that just when I thought it was time to go back to work, it wasn’t.

I started off 2016 with a whole body  accept for two small parts that had been removed when I was quite young, my tonsils and my appendix. This year alone I have lost (or had removed) both breasts (complete bilateral skin sparing mastectomy), some lymph nodes, my uterus, my fallopian tubes, my ovaries and my cervix. Just when I was starting to grieve the loss of my breasts and the acceptance of my foobs we found it was necessary for me to undergo a complete and radical hysterectomy. I put my grieving on hold and went into surgery. In 12 short months I have had 4 surgeries, 12 rounds of chemo, and about 19 IV Immunotherapy treatments. I have 6 more immunotherapy treatments to go which should wrap up in April/May of 2017. And now in December I am aware that there is a little less of me. In some ways they are just body parts, as crude as that may sound it is true. In other ways I know that as I reflect on them and on the changes to come I will begin to see and accept that they were more than body parts, they were a part of me. As 2016 comes to a close I find I want to take time to reflect on all of the good that came to us this year. The blessings are many. As I look forward to 2017 I envision time for reflection, time for grieving, time to share all of the changes in my body in hopes of helping others, and time to transition back into ‘normal’ life after treatment as the year progresses. I will once again write down New Year’s Resolutions and look forward to seeing how they play out over the course of the year.