Blogs, how do they work?

It’s been almost 2 years since I posted on this blog. Despite the fact that a lot has been going on in my life lately, I actually have MORE free time than ever. I have a couple of motives for picking up ye olde blog again, which you, dear (probably) departed readers will be learning about soon.

Vic and I packed up the farm and moved to Los Angeles! We were pretty miserable in the Chicago suburbs (destructive level miserable). We put our house on the market, intending to move back into the Chicago city limits. Earlier this year I spent about 2 months in LA for work because my counterpart in that office had a child, then quit a few months later. We didn’t jump at the chance to move to LA at first, but when the first round of candidate interviews didn’t go so well, I sort of felt like I had been given a second chance to go for it.

So I went for it. The week I announced that I was interested in the position, someone put an offer on our house and the rest, as they say, is history.

Putting the house on the market after a long stretch of misery and then moving across the country was probably the hardest, longest process Vic and I have been through at this point. We’re still here and having a great time, so we must be doing something right. While you’re waiting for me to post more words words words, enjoy a picture of my kitty.

The end is nigh

This is what our fridge looks like these days:

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(we don’t subsist on Naked Juice or coconut water, but it’s there in case we accidentally sleep in or something)

It’s December 21 today, which means our fast ends in a mere 2.5 days. The last week or so has been rougher than the first week was. The fact that we’re in a holiday season and junk food is practically falling from the sky has REALLY made it difficult. I’ve been able to resist it, but walking past cookies, cupcakes, snack mixes and other assorted treats every single damn day starts wearing on you.

This past weekend I decided to make a few mixed drinks. We are WAY light weight, and, well, a couple drinks did us in. I’m forcing a limit upon myself over the holiday weekend so I don’t end up with a throbbing headache on Monday. We have to drive everywhere this weekend anyway, so it would be dumb to overdo it.

The juice fast is almost over. Now what? We’ve been strictly vegan in every sense of the word for a month. We can’t just start eating dairy and meat like we did before. We’re still going to be vegan for a bit longer. We’ll still be juicing at least 3 times a day for the first couple weeks, but our dinners will be vegan. Planning on reintroducing protein with our friends avocado, edamame, tofu, and tempeh. Once our bodies get used to having protein again, we can slowly reintroduce chicken and go onto the heavier meats from there. We’ve also planned to do 15 day juice fasts whenever we feel like we’re falling off the healthy eatin’ wagon. This fast has really changed our collective mindset about food. I can’t wait to eat more vegetables! I have so many ideas in my head that I’m excited to try out.

Things I’ve noticed about my weight loss:
I’m losing fat in weird places: fingers, knuckles, hands in general, wrists, ankles.

I’ve lost a lot of fat in my face. I’ve been wearing contacts for most of the month. I took a break from them today and my damn glasses are too big for my face now!

The one thing I’ve missed the most during this fast is coffee. I broke my coffee fast this morning and picked up a small soy latte. Holy cornholio, did I get amped up. The month without coffee was ALMOST worth it. ;)

10 days to go!

I am now 20 days into this juice fast. This has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, especially considering the time of year. Not only have I given up food completely, I’ve given up catered meetings and typical holiday treats/parties, CAFFEINE, and alcohol. I have to admit though, we cheated a little bit last Saturday. We booked a beer making class for Saturday a while back. What do you drink while you’re making beer? Why, beer of course! We had a few small samples. On the way back home we figured we’d stop for A pint. And stop for A pint we did. Had one pint of beer at our local brewpub and went on our way.

It may have been considered cheating, but it was day 15 of the fast and we figured we could use a small celebration. It didn’t derail us, and most importantly, we went and had one beer instead of sticking around, having lunch, and downing a few more pints. While we may do that frequently in the future, part of the fast is getting over mental hurdles and practicing better discipline.

I’m down 30 pounds. Not sure how much more I’ll lose before we break the fast at Christmas Eve dinner, but I have to admit I’m quite satisfied with the results of the fast. I’ve dropped some serious weight, learned I have way more willpower than I thought I did, and I think about food in a whole new way. In short, it’s worked on all fronts.

It’s going to be even harder to transition off and learn to eat properly without going overboard after having no food for a month. After suffering this much over the past month though, it would be such a waste to just go back to old eating habits. Hopefully the memories of suffering through a juice fast keeps me motivated. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I can’t just diet, I need to revamp my lifestyle.

Today sucked

Today is the 13th day of the fast. I haven’t strayed from the fast at all. I’ve lost 24 pounds so far. Today my department had a meeting that I planned the catering for. I had to sit in the meeting while all of my coworkers munched on Weber Grill.

It wasn’t hard to resist, but, it sucked. And that’s my update. Heh.

Seven Days

seven days

seven daysssss

It’s been a full seven days of juicing for Vic and me. Figured I’d give you all the nitty gritty details. And by that I mean we might be approaching TMI Town. Fasting… changes… your digestive system. Things happen. Things DON’T happen. And then you drink too many beets and things get REALLY weird. If you’re weirded out by toilet humor and/or toilet talk, pass over this blog entry.

Overall, Vic and I are feeling pretty good. Something finally “clicked.” Last night we had so much energy we had to force ourselves to sleep. Even though we forced ourselves to sleep, we slept well. Still not sure how that one worked out, but I’m not complaining. Although I have a lot of energy, I have noticed that I get winded a bit faster when I’m actually exerting myself. I’m sure this will work itself out with time. As far as hunger goes, I mostly only get hungry right before I drink my juice.

The bathroom stuff is interesting. Since I’m consuming mostly liquid (with the exception of fruit/veg pulp that gets through the juicer screen), I have to pee a LOT. On top of the juices you’re drinking, it’s still recommended that you drink 64oz of water. And as for number 2, well, after a few days you don’t really go. When you do go, it’s either really easy, or so hard you consider visiting the colon blow aisle of your local health food market. Oh. If you enjoy the beet or red cabbage juices like I do, be prepared for a rose-tinted surprise in the bathroom.

The worst part of it all for me has been the denial of three things I find comforting. You might think you don’t take comfort in food (or anything else), but man, when it’s been taken away, you know damn near immediately where you stand. I’ve had a pretty stressful week, and the lack of food, caffeine, and alcohol has almost broken me. After a stressful day at work, you look forward to coming home and tucking into a warm meal. Or perhaps you’d have a beer to punctuate your bad day. Not when you’re on a juice fast. Maybe you stay up a little past your bedtime watching TV or working on something, but hey, you can have coffee in the morning. Nope, not so much.

I’m hoping that this fast is finally the thing that snaps food into the right part in my brain. Hopefully denying myself for a month will help me work through my issues and figure out more healthy ways to blow off steam (like… exercise?!?). I may have been in denial in the past but I definitely see where I stand now, and it’s only been a week. The hard part will be making sure I/we keep it up after the fast is over.

Full Disclosure

It’s funny how the last post on my blog was from February of this year talking about my health and fitness goals. Yeah. THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN. Maybe I should put that crying baby in this post because I cry on the inside when I think about it. I’m sure all of you have noticed this fact through the horrific tagged pictures of me on Facebook (and I can hear you all clicking now, STOPPIT!).

Rather than post about what I was planning to do and then… not do it, I waited to post about my latest kick until I was actually DOING it. OK, maybe I thought about posting it but then I saw something shiny and forgot about the blog completely. Yeah, that’s more likely. Right now I’m 6 days into what’s probably the most drastic health/lifestyle/eating challenge I’ve ever embarked on. I’ve been a fatty for quite some time now, so I’ve embarked on many of these challenges over the years. Incremental change hasn’t worked for me. Stupid fad gimmick diets haven’t worked for me. I’m basically going balls to the wall on this one.

Some of you may have heard about a movie called Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. I have some friends that juice for nutrition or have done juice fasts before, but didn’t really do much with the information I absorbed. I was stuck at home, sick, so I decided to watch the movie after hearing a couple of recommendations. The documentary really struck a chord with me because I could truly relate to Joe and his situation (at least about the weight, not about the making piles of money). My situation is my own creation. I have a very unhealthy relationship with food and I need to do something drastic to fix it and get onto a path of normalcy. I forced Vic to watch the movie. After a few discussions and some… persuasion, Vic agreed to do a juice fast with me. We bought a juicer and started doing juices in addition to our daily meals.

I just finished juice #4 on day 6 of the fast. I’ll be honest. The first few days sucked. They sucked BAD. The first two days my body was adjusting to the lack of solid food and fewer calories. The third day was my first day fasting at work. I would have been fine, except… During the fast, I can’t commune with my dear friend caffeine. I am still suffering without my dear friend. I’ve been drinking herbal tea like a madwoman but chamomile does NOT make a great substitute for a steaming cup o’ joe. Oh, and I’m not drinking any alcohol (which has helped me pack on the pounds quite a bit since I turned 21). Here I am on day 6. I’ve probably been insufferable every now and then as I’ve gotten used to it, but, I really feel pretty good! The juice fills me up and gives me plenty of energy.

We are shooting for December 24 as the end of our juice fast. Joe Cross’ site, Reboot Your Life, works mostly with people doing 15 day “reboot” vegan programs. We started on November 25, so our fast will be 30 days. Many people have fasted for much longer, so with some motivation and willpower, we should be able to make it through. I know I always promise to update. I would love to keep this blog updated but life tends to get in the way of that. If you’re interested in keeping up with my progress but don’t want to hit my blog every day (don’t blame you, heh), plug me into your RSS feeder.