CLEAN: Remove, Restore, Rejuvenate. Part 2

We are at day 12 of the 21 days of the detox. So how have the first 12 days been?

I started this program sick. I had the start of a sinus infection that got worse over the first 6 days. This meant that I wasn’t exercising at all, I had super low energy, and very little appetite. So I don’t think my initial evaluation of the detox program is valid. Instead I’ll talk about John’s (my husband’s) experience. It’s more interesting.

No Coffee

No Coffee

 He had a couple of days suffering from caffeine withdrawal. That was to be expected. He likes his morning chemicals. Then he had some classic (according to the Clean book) symptoms that are best described as flu-like symptoms: chills, body aches, and low energy. This lasted for about 3 days. Then each day he has felt better. John has continued to ride his bike to work, and race his bike on Tuesday nights. The first Tuesday night race while on the detox program was during the 3 days of flu-like symptoms. It wasn’t pretty. This week however, was much better.

For John there is a calorie deficit. Even though I am making bigger portions than the recipes state, he is feeling hungry quite a bit of the time. As a result he has lost about 5-6 pounds so far. For me, when I was sick, I had no appetite so felt no hunger. However, this week as I start to ride again, I have started to feel hungrier. But not in a low energy-bonking way. I’ve lost about 3 pounds. I’m convinced it is all muscle from my weak legs after not exercising / riding for 16 days. That’s what happens to me. Muscle just drips off of me. Yesterday when I was out riding, I was going up a small hill, and I went to shift to an easier gear…and there wasn’t one. Ah, the road back to fitness.

The best way for me to describe how my stomach feels on this diet is that I never really feel full, and I never really feel hungry. You know when you want to go run and you need to wait a couple of hours after eating to let the food move through our stomach? Well that’s how I feel; I could go run at any time. My stomach is never full. It’s kind of a good feeling. For now.

Usually when I eat a bigger meal at lunch time I sink into a food coma mid-afternoon. But not so on this diet. I feel fine. That ready to go run or do anything fine.

The first week of the diet there was a learning curve. I felt like I was spending a lot of time in the kitchen preparing food. And I was. When you are following recipes that you are not familiar with, it takes time. It’s not as quick as whipping up a meal you’ve made countless times before. In the evenings I’d make Indie’s meal, I’d make our soup, then I’d make the breakfast smoothies, then the big meal for the next day’s lunch, and finally Indie’s lunch. Pheeew! Like I said a lot of kitchen time.

The breakfast smoothies have been great. We continue to do the energy smoothie recipe I included in the previous blog post. They are quite good. The lunch meals are great: I’ve been doing stir fry type veggies with black beans for me, and chicken for John, along with either wild rice, quinoa or buckwheat noodles (man, they are expensive!). And the evening soups…not so great. I miss chewing my evening meal. Pureed semi-raw soups are not cutting it for me. Especially when you have one big bowl of just the same flavor. I made one that was hard to finish. So the next night I made two different soups for some variety. I’m not making them 100% raw, maybe about 40-50% raw. The top 3 so far are: Butternut squash and apple, cauliflower and leek, and finally broccoli.

I am finding the Clean book to be not that well laid out or explained. Half way through the book, it starts to talk about an elimination diet. I think there are two diets: the clean diet and the elimination diet. The detox/21 day effort is the elimination diet, whereas the clean diet is more of something to adopt for every day. I think. There is an online community forum. This frustrated me. Lots of recipe ideas. Some though were for the clean diet and some for the elimination diet. I’d find a recipe, get all excited to try it, then realize it had some of the ingredients on the “do not eat” list. Still not sure which list agave is on now. I read online that it was switched from the “OK” list to the “do not eat” list. And then in the book there are some recipes that contain raw honey, but I thought honey was on the “do not eat” list….some mild confusion.

All-in-all, I’m enjoying the experience and challenge. It has definitely made me really appreciate how hard it is to make changes in the way you prepare food and the types of food you eat. Signing off for now. It’s lunch time. Quinoa and veggies.

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