My own hero. But that’s all that matters. I couldn’t be more impressed with myself than I am right now. I didn’t eat, chew, a single thing for the last 5 full days. I drank herbal teas and dishwater… Uh I mean hot water and lemon and drank nothing but liquid for five full days.
Slow that down.
Because trust me. Those were the longest five days of my life.
I’m basically bouncing off the walls. This is the latest I’ve stayed up all week. Perhaps it’s that energy I was promised from this juice detox. Perhaps it’s the excitement that tomorrow I eat solids.
There were moments in this week I never thought I’d make it. So, today I’d like to take a small moment for the contributors to my hero-making.
I’d like to thank my husband, who commented delightfully on Skype at every lunch time on the delicious ‘flavour’ of our 1pm juice (coupled, naturally, with that awesome vom Skype emoticon face) and who, when I asked if cheating and having a ‘small avo’ was copping out, gave me silent Skype treatment.This is like normal silent treatment, but just via Skype. Sometimes can be mistaken when someone also goes into a meeting. Clearly also a lot of our relationship happens via Skype. I’d rate Skype as the number one communication tool in marriages. He also proved by day 2, he was in fact already a hero, as he had no headache and loads of energy. Apparently this detox was for sissies.
My esteemed work colleagues who walked this dark walk with me. Except for when they sat around the table and ate croissants and drank milkshakes while I sipped water. Bitches.
My work-person, who asked me every day what today’s flavour was with genuine interest (going as far as to smell the courgette one and NOT make that Skype vom emoticon face in real life) and sat opposite me at lunch eating her delicious lunches while I sat drinking liquidised cucumber. She didn’t judge me if I smelt like cucumber. She encouraged me even. (She may have a thing for cucumber perhaps?)
But mostly, for the guy in the kitchen who said if I turned sideways he couldn’t see me anymore.
That. Made it all worth it. (I know he was lying because he followed it up by asking if I had actually been eating burgers on the side, but you know. I almost felt skinny)
So tomorrow I eat solids, and if I’m really honest (IF!? When am I not?) – I actually am nervous. I’m not entirely sure why I’m nervous. I’m 34 years old, chances are I’ve been eating solids for at least 33 years (never something you actually need to know about yourself.) But I’m apprehensive about it. I’m not craving anything particularly and as much as ‘they’ said I’d miss chewing. I haven’t. So mostly, I don’t even know what to have first. Its like your first day when you’re finished high school (after you get drunk). Freedom. But what do you do now?
So.. this said. It looks like its another juice for breakfast tomorrow.
And by it – I obviously mean the steak, the sushi, the croissant…. Or actually…
Its a funny thing having only consumed liquid for four full days. Last night, Mark and I discussed all the things we were looking forward to eating again. (A discussion we’ve never really had before. Ok except when we were leaving Thailand after 3 months of backpacking and I couldn’t face another pad-thai for a year. Seriously).
Him: Fish & Chips (something we rarely ever have). Me: That croissant. That one I deem my best meal I’ve ever had (granted it was on a monster 2 day-hangover but my memory of it was that it was amazing).
But the reality of our fantasy meals. Meh. At the risk of sounding like a converted hippy, and yes yes, I know I could’ve spent R1300 for an unlimited number of classes at SWITCH, but instead spent it on 5 days worth of juice – out of all the cravings for food that I had, I actually can’t imagine eating any of them on Friday. (This is equally terrifying as it is satisfying)
Look. I definitely don’t want to stay juicing. Let’s be serious. Have you seen my struggle this week? It hasn’t been pleasant.
But, where I was planning on booking a table at one of our favourite restaurants, and ordering wine, pasta, steaks and eating all the bread with all the butter, today the appeal is lost and instead I find myself thinking of a really healthy salad for dinner on Friday night (who even am I?). Perhaps that is the point of it all – to realise, your body doesn’t need what it thinks it does, and that your mind really controls it all.
A month at SWITCH probably would’ve landed me up with a flatter tummy, no doubt. But this little exercise has kick-started a desire for eating a lot healthier and has strengthened my mind and focus to be able to do it. There will still be indulgences, because we still have to enjoy living afterall, but it’ll be less about the emotional crutch or pure taking-it-too-far with food and drinks. Eat right and train hard (yet to actually start the training thing – don’t judge. You try drinking juices made of courgette, celery and avo, yes together, and see if you’re up for a Bikini Body Guide workout).
As my eyes opened this morning, I whipped back the covers to see it for myself – my flat tummy! Hawk asked the same question, the excitement making his voice quiver (that’s a lie too, but makes the story so much better). It, of course, wasn’t flat. It wasn’t even close. What a disappointment!
Turns out, a Kayla Itsines body requires Kayla Itsines gymming. I guess I’ll tackle that next week. Its not for lack of energy, in fact I’m surprised that I do really have energy, its just that I’m still doing this detox in Winter and its still really cold to get out of bed in the mornings.
My motivational information email today from Juice Revolution said to remind myself today why I am doing this.
I can’t recall why I am.
My mind is a blurry mush hidden behind the dull pain of headache.
But, this evening, I was sort of reminded why as I stepped on the scale. Its 1,5kg’s down since Monday morning. No really. Ok, its probably just water (I can hear all you critics say before you even think it!), but still… inching closer to a goal weight that I last saw before my South America trip is super exciting, and motivating!
So, besides just a moan (which my team have had to endure all day long. I think they’re feeling this detox worse than I am) – today wasn’t all bad. Minus the non-flat-tummy result from the morning I mean.
Firstly, I genuinely am not hungry. Its incredible considering that on Day 1 the hunger burn that felt like my large intestine was eating my little intestine was rather intense, and now, on day 3, I’m actually unable to finish my juices. This may also be because something named ‘Green Refresh’ that has brocolli plus cucumber in it (yes, juiced together) is very difficult to finish 500ml of.
Secondly – on the note of cucumber. I may never eat it again. Today I went out to buy a toothbrush and toothpaste because I was scared I am starting to smell like cucumber. And that’s gross. Its a dumb vegetable fruit thing anyway.
I don’t miss coffee. I miss the act of coffee. I miss ordering my flat white, the barista getting it just right and sipping at my take away cup as I start up my macbook and check my morning mails or have a quick catchup with my work-person. I only have one cup a day (and yes, it comes with milk so I know its bad and blah blah) and I always thought I needed it to wake me up. Turns out, I don’t. I need it as a social crutch or something. Its like smoking. Without the lung cancer risk.
I don’t miss wine. By Tuesday I usually need a drink (ha! lets be honest, its by Monday that I drink). Work stress combined with traffic and also, generally someone pisses me off by Tuesday. So.. its Tuesday today, and I don’t have any craving for a glass of wine. (May be due to headache. Headache may also be reason why no one has pissed me off as I have been unable to focus on anyone for longer than 3 minutes.)
I don’t miss chocolate and sweets. After every lunch, I turn to my work-person and tell her I need a chocolate or a sweet treat. Sometimes she reveals ferrero rocher from her draw (she has a box that I’ve eaten my way through – she bants, and is incredible at it. Is bant a verb? Anyway). Sometimes she shrugs. I don’t think I’ve uttered the words to her once this week. A genuine non-sweet craving going on which is very odd for me.
While detoxing for some may be all about putting good things in, and nourishing your body. For me – its turning out to be a test of will-power (of which, I’ve been proven to have none previously). I have two days left. I have the support of so many people in my office (which makes it genuinely awesome) and on twitter (because where else can I moan to strangers?). I had to sit through a farewell breakfast, a farewell afternoon tea and tomorrow I have a farewell lunch, and its all really challenging. (Not just because it also involves saying goodbye to people, but all of these things include carbs that I can’t have!)
Oh, on the note of carbs – so I may not be missing the wine, chocolate or coffee… but the carbs. Oh the carbs. I’m afraid for any carb come the weekend, as it won’t last long.
So its 8.30pm and I’ve been in bed for half an hour already. This is because its yes, cold. But also because there is very little to do in the evenings if you’re not cooking and enjoying a meal. Our evenings are generally spent in the kitchen as we cook supper, and then around the dining table just the two of us talking about our days and discussing ideas, holidays, issues at work, things we’ve read.. you know… so adult of us. We sometimes stay there all evening. Its hard to prepare, or eat dinner around a dinner table when its a juice. Try and ‘chew’ the juice all you want. Its still juice and doesn’t warrant the candles or the placemats.
Cooking and eating are events. Without them, you have a lot of time on your hands to be… err, productive I guess. But sometimes you just want to sit at a dinner table with someone and talk some shit about your day over a glass of wine.
I have wanted to do this juice detox for some time now, but reading Natasha’s post on how (relatively) easy while life-changing a juice detox was, it wasn’t long before we’d clicked, credit carded ourselves and purchased about a million bottles of fresh juice.
I am writing this from my bed, at the end of day 2. It is 8.24pm. My head hurts. A lot. I am irritable, and having an internal battle between admitting defeat (which would mean I can indulge a team breakfast tomorrow) and solidiering on.
I’m on a 5 day super detox with Juice Revolution. We did the 5 day detox, because I always wanted to just do three days (this would mean I would be finishing tomorrow, and a decision I’m regretting now) but a blog post made 7 days sound so easy, I thought 5 was a good middle ground.
Day 1, which was a Sunday on recommendation of friends, went well. I stayed in bed until at least midday. I did cause myself pain when I went to builders to buy some paint (because I still live in the burbs and there’s always something to be painted in this house) and all I could smell were the boerie rolls being braai’d. They almost got me. Lucky I know how they smell better than they taste. The highlight of the day was my night time treat – which is apple and cinnamon heated up. Besides a deep pain in my belly that could be called hunger… the day was ok. It was going to be ok.
Day 2. Today. I was wrong about being ok. A new level of feeling like crap. Take your worst hangover, and then deny yourself any food on it. That’s about 1 tenth of it.
I woke up this morning and I wasn’t too hungry. Which I thought weird as the last time I ate solids was on Saturday night. I thought I was sorted and that this detox thing was going to a breeze after all. I shouldn’t have thought anything. Little did I know what the day had in store for me.
What I realised today (amongst much hating of everything in my path) is that people who do detoxes genuinely care about what is going into their body. I don’t. I genuinely care about being in a bikini at the end of the year on a Maldivian beach. But how I achieve this, whether through banting, or intense gymming, or organic vegetables, makes no actual difference to me. I thought it did. I thought I could be someone who really cared, but I don’t. I will never shop at organic markets. I will never drive to Spier to buy my organic chicken. I’m not that person.
I care about eating well, sure. In the same way that I care about using dermalogica on my skin and sunscreen in summer. I don’t want to age badly, but I want to live while I’m aging. And by living, I mean eating and enjoying. That includes wine (the only thing I haven’t actually missed at all in 2 days).
Look, I like food. I like food a lot. Today my mouth watered at rice cakes with peanut butter. I was caught in the act of looking longingly at the rice cake like it was actually pizza. But normally I don’t like just any food (its just that its been 2 days without solids…). I like really good food. I never ate junk and fast food before – and I still won’t, regardless of my ridiculous cravings I had today (all the burgerking in the world!!). I’ll still pay the price tag and go to the nice restaurants. (In planning right now for Friday night. As reward for getting through Sunday – Thursday, of course).
They say you won’t be hungry. That the juices fill you up. They lie. Well, they lie up until Juice 4 of day 2. When quite literally, I’m not sure if I was hungry or not any more – but I just couldn’t any more with the juices. Juice 5 went the same way.
What does it feel like? This isn’t my example, but I have to use it as its perfectly apt.
I had little tingleys all over my body for most the day while feeling freezing (it was 16 degrees today, which is hardly cold enough for coat and scarf inside the office). At one point, I asked a colleague (thankfully who doubles as a friend) if I still had my jaw and if I was slurring (I wasn’t). My tongue felt thick, my jaw and skin felt numb. I was sure I wasn’t making any sense at all. The bathroom floor waved at me. I had to blink to be sure. (It stopped waving for just a moment, before it started again). The symptoms may be from general starvation, or this may be a detox. Whatever it was, I was coming down in the worst possible way.
But… let’s back up to my ‘Why Detox?’ post – as you can see. I don’t eat badly (one cup of coffee a day and some speckled eggs – it could be worse!). So why I wanted to hug my knees to my chest and rock back and forth for half the day is beyond me.
I just told someone that they’d last the not eating part, if they can stop themselves from clawing their brains out. Which is dramatic, I know. But I’m feeling dramatic because I haven’t eaten anything in two days!!
But really. The headache. I haven’t had a pain like this since my one and only migraine on a train from Milton Keynes to London after a Robbie Williams concert. (do you know how tragic it is to have a migraine on a train after a concert of the man that you are in love with? That whole concert is tainted with the memory of the headache. Anyway, I digress and RW is gross now anyway). The headache is severe. You get it.
Tomorrow I’m supposed to wake up with a flat tummy. A by-line to this should be that it would depend on the size of your tummy before starting the detox, whether a flat-tummy was possible. The way I’m looking this evening, there’s no chance there’s going to be any flatness going on in the morning.
Apparently we’re allowed to cheat once day. I found this out today. A small avo or a small banana. And only if you’re ‘physically‘ hungry. How I was supposed to tell the difference between physically and mentally hungry without knowing if my jaw was intact is beyond me. It was tempting though. So very tempting. However, that would be… as the name says, “cheating”.
My jury is still out. I’m waiting to get this boost of energy and happiness, and to loose the pain in my head. I’m waiting for my skin to glow. But mostly, I’m waiting till Friday when I can eat again.
Oh, I also learnt that some people want to see you succeed in this and are super supportive. And others can be dicks who email you pictures of pizza. (thanks to the team support – I didn’t receive any actual emails with pictures of pizza). Also, I don’t really think those people are dicks. I kinda laugh on the inside while throwing my tantrum on the outside. Because one time, I sent a picture of a praying mantis to my best friend who is petrified of them, and oh how I laughed. Shame.
The question has already come up, and no doubt in the week ahead, while I painfully try and drink my juices, teas and don’t forget the yum hot water and lemon (but not) I will be asked it again, ‘Why the detox’?
I don’t eat badly. I eat two boiled eggs for breakfast, a flat white (to go – a ritual more than an addiction), a handful of almonds at 11am, lunch of a salad (with ok… maybe some fried chicken – sue me!), some more almonds in the afternoon, a rooibos tea and dinner. Dinner which is usually mostly carb free – steak and veggies, chicken and salad. Or a combination of those. Once a week there’s salmon. All from Woolies because, well… I give woolies about 75% of my salary. The rest is bond, petrol, and all those damn insurances.
I eat well (relatively). I exercise (most mornings). So what’s with the detox?
Well, lets back up and be a little more honest. I may have forgotten to mention the packet of speckled eggs I often am known to inhale between making my woolies payment, my car and arriving home (hmm.. speckled eggs) or the half slab of chocolate I have after dinner. Or the milo (that sometimes… ok, most times I just eat out of the tin. 3 spoons in the milk, one spoon in my mouth). Or the wine. The wine on a Monday, a Tuesday. You know, days of the week should not dictate which wine you open, or how much you drink of it.
Some time before the onslaught of the Drake Hawkins Family time (some are winemakers, but that’s not necessarily the reason why we drink, but a whole post will be dedicated to them at some point), at the start of winter and roughly about when the ‘proverbial’ rug was pulled from under me… I decided to stop giving a fuck. It was cold and I no longer cared for the gym or a treadmill. I ate entire chocolates (not half now, and half later). I had second helpings, I drank on Mondays, Tuesdays even. Hell, even Sundays. We partied till 4am, and slept in because we could. We indulged. And we didn’t care about the consequences.
It wasn’t nearly as liberating as one may think it should be.
The weight gain, that’s one thing. (And to be really honest, the scale actually hasn’t budged more than 1,7kgs. Which isn’t a lot to some, while is loads to me). The exhaustion, the sadness (my own term for where others throw around ‘depressed’ so easily – it is not a subject to be taken lightly), shitty pale complexion and general grumpiness coupled with sleepless nights (or perhaps its even insomnia?) – that’s another thing. Plus, booking our summer holiday to a destination worthy of honeymoons, special occasions, or bucket list tick marks, means that its time to kick start the healthy living programme in this household.
A Kick Start. This detox, is that. Mostly.
It’s also really very difficult. I like food. I like it alot and I especially like it on weekends. I also especially like it now that I’ve been eating so much of it lately. So its challenging. This whole, not eating thing. And its only day 1.
But, like every Sober October where I abstain from the necessary (generally just to recoup before the silly season kicks off, but also to prove I can), and every 40 (6) days of lent when I give up chocolate or coffee (ok, only once I gave up coffee and it was stupid), this too will strengthen my mind, and I’ll be able to last. Its only 5 days.
A strong mind. To tackle the second part of this year which is going to involve a whole heap of almond and coconut flour, lindt 90% chocolate only, oily black coffee, and the inside of that gym that debits my bank account every month.