Thursday, July 15, 2010

Diet Hiatus

Well, I followed through with the 7 days of the Ultra Simple Diet but immediately fell of the wagon and did not add foods back in slowly as I was supposed to. There are two reasons I did this:
1) I was not feeling all that much better on the diet anyway, so I don't think I would have noticed changes by slowly adding foods back in. It's possible that I have foods that don't agree with me even within the limited items allowed on Ultra Simple...
2) I'm on vacation! I can't do diet & hardcore exercise while I'm on vacation! In fact, vacation calls for an ANTI-diet! It calls for alcohol(raspberry mead! sake!), fried local oysters, frozen pizza, and hot dogs and marshmallows roasted over a fire. I believe it also calls for Carrie to gain an inordinate amount of weight which she will have to work twice as hard to lose again. Sigh.

So, let me gather my resolve and eat what we have in the house upon our return, and then I will be ready to start the next plan with an iron will. I think. What is it about lack of responsibility that feeds the desire for more of the same?
I think what will drive me is the fear of even stepping onto a scale...

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Ultra Simple It Is

In a little over a week, I'll be starting the Ultra Simple Diet, by Dr. Mark Hyman
I really like his philosophy as a doctor, and the diet includes several components that I need to be incorporating anyway. This coming week is supposed to be a "preparation week" where you work on gathering supplements, weaning from caffeine, sugar, etc., and mentally preparing.
The diet is about removing toxins and controlling inflammation- a biggie for me. It involves cleaning out the system and only eating foods that are low-allergen and healthful. No sugar, alcohol, caffeine, gluten, etc. But ACK! A return to the horrific vegetable broth from the first diet plan I tried- they got the recipe from Dr. H!
The exercise seems mild- yoga(3x a day!) & walking. So I'll bid adieu to Mr. Horton for at least a week. Shucky-darn:)
I like that the process is very laid out. It tells me what to do & eat throughout the day.
While the plan is technically only 7 days, you are then supposed to spend the 2 weeks after only slowly re-incorporating certain foods. So all told, it's really more a month-long plan, but this preparation week is really nothing big.
I have high hopes for this diet. I actually looked it up originally because there was an article written about it where the author said that her friends were raving about how they felt on it.
I'll check in after I've been on it for a few days to let you know how it's going.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Can I Really Say Goodbye to Tony?

Can it really be the end? Yup, tomorrow marks the last day of the 3-month P90x program for me.
An important thing to remember when reading about my results is that I did NOT follow the P90x diet, but I did follow the exercise plan pretty religiously. What this tells me is that while the exercise plan alone helped me gain strength, it is NOT a weight loss plan in & of itself. In fact, I gained BACK the 3 lbs. I lost on the last diet.

Here are the Vital Stats for P90. And I again want to clarify that my 5-point rating scale for these diets does not represent
worst-> best, but rather least->most. In some cases it will reflect the former as well, but not necessarily :

My impression of the overall healthiness of this plan: 3- I think the exercise plan is certainly healthy, though could cause injury, no matter how much warming up & stretching you do prior to starting the workouts. Plyometrics messed my right knee up every time. This is NOT a program for beginners. In terms of the diet, I have concerns about starting out with so much protein. I really need a more anti-inflammatory diet.

Ease of Implementing: 1- I never did implement the diet. I followed the exercise plan, but is it something someone could reasonably keep up for LIFE? And the sad part is, if I want to keep the mus-kels, I HAVE to keep it up- or at least some facsimile thereof.

Cost of Implementing: 3- The initial investment partly depends on what you already own and whether you are able to find a good deal on the set. I already had hand weights up to 25 lbs., but I did purchase bands(which I didn’t really use) and a chin-up bar(which I DID use- it’s a pretty integral part of P90). I spent less than $100 on the items I needed(including the ripped copies of DVDs), but I could see that if you have nothing and pay full-price for everything you could be looking at 3 times that.

Feeling of Deprivation: ? Whoops-

Energy Level: 3 I don’t believe the exercise contributed either way to my energy levels.

Pounds lost: -3
Yes, NEGATIVE 3. Shut UP.

What's next? I would like to start a new plan in a week. During my "week off" I plan to try some of the P90x workouts that were mysteriously NOT included at any point in the plan. I also plan to go out to eat without having to worry about whether the choices I make are ok with any particular plan. And then...and then. I am really wrestling with which plan to try next. I had decided that I am no longer going to care about weight loss and that if I am eating healthfully, I will be satisfied. But seeing poundage creeping back up made me seriously disgruntled.
So the two plans I am vacillating between:
The UltraSimple Diet by Dr. Mark Hyman- this one would probably be just what the doctor ordered. Anti-inflammatory and very healthy. Basically it cuts out sugar, alcohol, dairy, gluten, etc. He just recommends walking for exercise, and this jumpstart diet is just a 7-day plan. He has another book called UltraMetabolism which I might want to follow with if I feel good on this one...
The Belly Fat Cure, because where did those 3 lbs migrate right back to? In a nutshell, this diet cuts down significantly on sugars & carbs without counting calories. The exercise program relies on the author's patented way of lifting weights that sounds too good to be true...takes significantly less time than the paces Mr. Horton has been putting me through. Can I get the same results or better with less work? The diet is suggested for 2 weeks- a claim of 10 lbs. expected to be lost is made. But the exercise portion is actually a 38-day plan, so in teality I'm looking at over a month on this one.

So what do YOU think? I would love to get your vote!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Making my Peace with Tony Horton

Well, I have now been P90xing it up for 2 months, and while many days I still dread the long and strenuous workouts(in fact I am working on this blog right now because I am putting off the dreaded "Legs, Back & Abs" Friday routine), I know they have made some positive changes in my body. I actually foresee continuing to use the workouts on a regular basis even at the formal conclusion of the program in a month.
I still have yet to lose a single pound, but am definitely stronger and have more firmness & definition. Last weekend on a hike we came across a set of pull-up bars and I pulled myself up for a few. I don't believe I would have been able to do that pre-P90.

And again, I have only myself to blame for the lack of weight loss- I have not followed the diet much...well ok, I have not followed the diet AT ALL. The basics of it are that you should eat a very high percentage of protein the first month, and slowly start normalizing the carb/protein ratio over the next two. Of course you are also supposed to keep it lo-cal. I HAVE worked to keep my calories in check, though not maniacally, but the rest I discarded pretty fast. I have no doubt that it would indeed probably help me with weight loss, but I think I rebelled against the fact that it really isn't necessarily a healthy choice to eat that high a percentage of protein, especially for me as I seek to tamp down my body's inflammatory response.

I will give a final report late next month and then will start the next plan, which I'll keep under wraps for now. But I think I may keep Mr. Tony Horton in my life for longer than originally planned. I think Tony & I have made our peace:)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

I Still Want to Burn his House Down

This was yesterday's Facebook status: I interrupt this Good Friday/Autism Awareness Day broadcast to say to Mr. Tony Horton of P90x, "It's been a month now, and I still want to burn your house down." Now back to your regularly scheduled programs.
Yes, I am closing out the first month of the program and definitely have a better idea of the pros & cons of P90x.
- variety, variety, variety! Yoga, strength training, stretching, can't really complain of boredom, though you ARE welcome to freely complain about Mr. Horton's inane banter
-you can do it all from the comfort of your own home
-you are told exactly what to do, but you do have some choices within the program
- I am definitely feeling some strength & flexibility benefits
-on many of the routines, the directions and tips given really are instructive in terms of form

- I feel that some of the cardio routines are pretty average in terms of intensity. I was feeling the strain more when I was on my indoor bike(and I could watch a TV show simultaneously!).
-There is a lot of reliance in this program on chin-ups/pullups. I can only do them assisted with a chair, and have injured my right shoulder in my attempts. The alternative given is to use the bands, but there is really no comparison. Using even the band with the most resistance is "baby work", using the pull up bar is "a man's work"...I see no in-between option. But I plan to keep trying. Sarah Connor. Sarah Connor. Sarah Connor.
-There is a slight bit of coarse language scattered throughout the DVDs- nothing major, but since little Jordan has been participating with me some, I don't like to hear "hell", "damn" & "ass" sprinkled into my workouts.Though I almost find the dumb jokes and comments even more offensive...
-I found the nutrition plan to be too complicated with too little support. I decided to stick with what I felt was the gist of it: high protein, 3 meals + 1-2 snacks per day, lo-cal. More on this in the final paragraph.
-while I listed being able to work out at home as a benefit, the con are confined to your home. No outdoor activities/alternatives are given as equivalents for even the cardio days. It would be nice if this was a choice given at least once a week.

Month One Parting Thoughts
I am feeling good about the exercise plan, despite the cons listed above. I like that I am trying new things and pushing a few personal limits. I have only missed one day in the month, so I feel that I have followed this part of the program very well.
But the diet...nope. Even my general "high protein, low cal" plan was thwarted (by me) on multiple occasions. Mead...drink of the gods, or drink straight from Satan to my doorstep? Sigh. And this is the probable explanation for why I have thus far yet to lose a single pound on this plan. I will say that I have reservations anyway about eating a lot of animal products, as suggested. I don't think it's helpful in my quest to tamp down inflammation. One thing I feel good about is that I have been eating more healthfully than I normally would, even if not necessarily with high protein and low calorie restrictions. I've enjoyed some delicious raw foods and salads and have been eating substantially less gluten. So even though the weight loss has come to a standstill, I feel good about where I am. I'll report back in a month, and hopefully I'll have more self-control over the coming 30 days, at least in the calorie department...stay tuned!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Healthy and Raw Recipes I've Enjoyed Recently

Several of you have asked for some of the recipes I've been mentioning on Facebook, so here are a few. Enjoy!

Shivie’s Marinated Stuffed Mushrooms

20 Crimini mushrooms, stems removed and saved for filling
2 tsp tamari
2 tsp lemon juice
Clean mushrooms and add them to marinade in a bowl with a cover. Marinate for 20 mins
1 cup mushroom stems
1 ½ cups soaked sunflower seeds
½ cup soaked walnuts
1 clove garlic
2 tsp tamari
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
Add all ingredients to a food processor with s blade. Blend until filling is combined well and has a smooth consistency. Stuff mushroom caps with this mixture.
Brazil Nut Parmesan:
1 cup brazil nuts
1 clove garlic
1 tsp salt
Place all ingredients in food processor and process until fluffy, then sprinkle on top.
Raw Food Recipe for Mango Pie
Mango Pie Crust
3 Cups Almonds
1 1/2 Cup Dates
In food processor, grind almonds until they’re finely ground. Put in separate bowl. Process dates into a paste. Add to almonds and massage into crust. Put crust into pie dish. Make filling and then pour into dish.
Mango Pie Filling
2 Cups Dried Mango
2 Cups Water
1 Scoop Kev’s Super-Delicious Smoothie Powder
Soak mangoes in the water and blend. Add as pie filling- chill & serve!
** Note- I just used 3 fresh mangos and used the green smoothie powder I had on hand*

Elaina Love’s Raw Food Recipe for Peach Cobbler
Pie Crust
2 Cups Walnuts
1/4 Cup Raisins
1/4 Cup Dates
Pinch of Salt
Put in Food Processor and pulse until crumbly. Take out 1/2 and put to the side for topping.
Process the rest until gummy.
Lay down on the bottom of a pie or glass pan.
6-7 Peaches sliced
1/2 Cup Dates
Tablespoon Psylium Husk
Pinch Nutmeg
Pinch Lemon Zest
Pinch Cinnamon
Put 1/2 of sliced peaches in the food processor with all other ingredients. Blend until smooth.
Take blended mix and add back to sliced peaches.
Pour on top of crust and add crumble on top.
Here’s where you can check out more of Elaina Love’s raw food recipes:
Also, to see about more events in the Pacific Northwest, please visit

For the Immune-Boosting Chai tea
go to herb mentor

Here is a REALLY EASY raw recipe that my son enjoys(and I do too!):
Mix raw oats, raw nut butter, and raw honey together (just enough of the moister ingredients to make the mixture clump)- ratios to taste. It's a lot like a no-bake oatmeal cookie.
To win a Gluten-Free cookbook as well as GF oats and oat flour, go to Bob's Red Mill.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Blog to Follow

My husband Paul has started his own blog about health and fitness, and he is actually multi-degreed in the topic and has decades of experience in the area, so I am hoping to learn and grow from reading what he has to say. He and his business partner are hoping to take what I'm doing (trial runs of various popular diet & exercise programs) and utilize the feedback about the pros & cons of each one to create something that is even better than all these plans I've been testing! I am excited to see the results! Pop on over and give him some feedback about what YOU'D like to see and what your favorite and least favorite aspects are of the exercise & diet plans that are currently out there. The website is called Vigorous Vocals.
By the way, I am 1.5 weeks into P90x and am HATING the creator of the program right now. I think I injured my shoulder and was hobbling around like a 90-year old for several days because of my screaming calves. I will blog about what I am seeing so far and the pros and cons as I see them in the early part of April. Since it's a 3-month program, I plan to blog at the end of the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd months. Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Coming Attractions: P90x

Well next week begins the most dreaded, yet most exciting plan yet: P90x. Dreaded, because it looks and is rumored to be a real butt-kicker, and exciting because I need my butt kicked. Classy words from a classy Southern gal, eh?

In looking it over, I see that I have 3 workout options, and I will probably choose the "Classic" version, because as much as I'd like to go for the "Doubles" version- otherwise known(by me, anyway) as "P90x on crack"- I do not have 2 1/2 hours per day to dedicate to a booty-kicking workout. 1 to 1 1/2 will have to do.

Here are my thoughts at this point, having only a cursory knowledge of what I am about to put myself through:
-I only watched brief snippets of each workout, and may I just say that I am concerned? The guy leading the workouts is totally ripped and as I watched and zipped through some of the chapters it appeared that he is out of breath and straining. A lot. Maybe he's just acting, to make the rest of us feel better. Man.
-I ordered the workout bands and a chin-up bar from Ebay. I tried to pull myself up for a chin-up. That was a no-go. Here's hoping that changes by the end of the program:) Remember, I want to get all "Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor from the Terminator movies". If I can't do a few chin-ups, it's not gonna happen.
-I am kicking myself because this would have been the perfect winter workout! You work out along with the DVDs, so by necessity it is all indoors. What was I thinking?? It's just starting to get nice outside! Also you are supposed to go for a full 90 days, but I'll only be about halfway through before my Austin trip dates are here. Hmmmmm, maybe I SHOULD do the "on crack" version after all...LOL
-In the Craigslist copies I bought I got only the briefest explanation of the nutritional guidelines, yet I'd heard from those who have actually done the program that the diet is critical. So I looked up the guides and they are long & complicated. I have my weekend prep work cut out for me. I preferred the short & sweet version. It basically just involved eating several small meals- portion control and calorie counting. Hope the expanded version is not as annoying as it looks at first blush.
-I sent copies to my friend Carrie F. so that we can do the workouts together...2300 miles apart.
Carrie Ann, I am totally going to take you in an arm-wrestling contest on May 1st.

I plan to start early next week- by March 10, for sure. Will post again in early April to let you know how things are going...if I'm still alive.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Closing Out Diet #2

Winding down the Flat Belly Diet- one week to go. Despite my abyssmal failure at sticking with it properly- almost a whole week of not properly following the guidelines, plus the horror of Valentines night-on which I may well have consumed an entire week's allotment of calories in a single sitting-I like this diet in many ways! I plan to keep the diet book and cookbook because the recipes are tasty, easy, and low-calorie. For me, this will be a fallback plan when I need to lose a few pounds without feeling too terribly deprived and cranky.
Here is one of my favorite easy lunches that I'd like to share with you from the book:
Turkey Quesadilla: Spread 1 Laughing Cow Light Garlic & Herb Cheese wedge on one Thomas Whole Wheat Sahara Wrap(I actually used an Ezekiel tortilla). On half the wrap, place 2 oz. Applegate Frams antibiotic-free Honey Maple Turkey, 1/4 c. baby spinach leaves, 2T crumbled feta, and 10 sliced large black olives. Fold over and heat in toaster oven or nonstick pan over medium heat. Total calories:346

Here are the Vital Stats for the Flat Belly Diet(if there are any changes over the next week, I will edit this post!). And I want to clarify that my 5-point rating scale for these diets does not represent worst-> best, but rather least->most. In some cases it will reflect the former as well, but not necessarily :

My impression of the overall healthiness of this diet: 3(many of the recipes call for healthy ingredients- I especially appreciate that some call for specific brands that are organic, preservative-free, etc.), and I think limiting calories and portions is healthy in & of itself, but I am concerned that the diet has no limitations- white sugar is included in some of the recipes, for example. I think the reasoning behind this on the author's part leads right into...

Ease of Implementing: 3- I think the author wanted to make the diet attainable, and not such a far cry from one's ordinary eating that the dieter would feel deprived and give up after a few days. And I do believe that for many folks, the ease of implementing would be a 4. I shared my struggle with calorie-counting- I had NEVER done it before, and I was frustrated in trying to utilize recipes that do not include calorie counts or grab a muffin at a bakery, or figure out how to have my Deathcake & eat it too:)...however, if I had simply stuck with the recipes included, I would have been fully satisfied, and ease would have indeed risen to a 4. It was my resistance to sticking with it as closely as I should have that led to problems.

Cost of Implementing: 1- no more expensive than regular groceries- in fact, I daresay I spent less. When your portions are much smaller, it just naturally stretches your food budget! The initial cost of the 2 books sets you back a bit at the start, but you could check them out at your local library or purchase them used to cut down on or eliminate this factor.

Feeling of Deprivation: 2.5 On the days I was doing it right, I felt slightly hungry throughout the day. On some days when I ate dinner early, my tummy rumbled through the night. Suffice it to say I am not used to this:). But in terms of being deprived of foods I enjoy, not at all, because as I mentioned before, you can eat what you want, but you might just need to make it a smaller portion than what you are used to.

Energy Level: 4 I felt fine- really no better or worse than usual. Though I'll admit as I did in my last post that I took to an afternoon cup of coffee on some days to gather the energy to work out in the late afternoon/early evening. But I certainly do not attribute flagging afternoon energy to this diet.

Pounds lost: 3
So now we are at a grand total of 4 pounds lost between the 2 diets. I believe I would have lost more had I stuck with it better, and if I am lucky I'll be able to edit this post in a week and roll the number over from a 3 to a 4:)

Next Up: My older son Derek will be visiting from Feb. 26-March 3, so no diets allowed at that time! My next diet plan will be postponed until a few days after his departure instead of starting it immediately thereafter because I anticipate having some yummy leftovers still in the fridge after he leaves, and I don't want to set myself up for failure...or waste yummies. Anticipated start date for the next plan: March 8. I am both eagerly anticipating the results of this plan and at the same time dreading the work it will surely take to see said results. The plan? P90x. I have gathered my materials and will post in early March to let you know more!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A Fall off the Diet Wagon

And I thought this Flat Belly Diet would be a piece of cake! Turns out it was...literally. 2 Cupcake Royale cupcakes and and an entire Deathcake to be exact. Cupcake Royale wouldn't even tell me how many calories I downed in that thing. And therein lies the problem I am having with this diet: I have never EVER in my entire 39 years of life counted calories. Never! If I cook a meal, I have no idea how many calories are in it, and if it isn't calculated in the cookbook or magazine, I am not ABOUT to make the supreme effort it would take to figure it out. Many restaurants and bakeries cannot tell you how many calories are in their dishes. And this diet relies upon calorie-counting. Sigh. So I fell off the wagon and landed with a thump, and just gave up entirely last week. And it saddens me, because between the detox diet and the beginning week of this one, I was 3 lbs. lighter on the scale. But now after my relapse, only 1- 2 max. I am determined to behave for the next 2 1/2 weeks, at which time I have scheduled a PLANNED "No-Diet-Allowed" week, because Derek is coming for a visit! And you better believe I'll be sharing at least one cupcake:) Hopefully I will not be back to where I started...or worse!
And in a strange juxtaposition, during this week of misbehavior, I have been spending long periods of time joyfully planning a vegan/raw food diet for the summer, when local produce is abundant. Two of the favorite sites I have discovered are the Pure 2 Raw site, a blog written by a set of twins who happen to be raw vegan bakers who are also exercise enthusiasts. They are running a V-day contest right now, and I would love to win some of their treats to try out! The other site is called G Living and has the most gorgeous photos of vegan & raw delights, accompanied by recipes. Although I must admit that at both sites what I am sooooo drawn to would be...ahem...the desserts.
So far today I am back on track- yummy black bean & avocado burger on a sprouted bun for lunch...and is it wrong that I am back to drinking coffee, especially to perk myself up when I am feeling to fatigued to work out? Whoops.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Diet # 2- The Flat Belly Diet

This diet comes to us from Prevention Magazine and is in a nutshell a lower-calorie (but not to the point of starving yourself /deprivation) diet.
As a sidenote, I really like the calorie-counting tool in the lower right quadrant of this page. You input your height, weight, etc., and it tells you exactly how much you need to do to maintain or lose.
No foods off limits, exercise encouraged and a plan given, but not "required". There are 2 twists though, that make this plan a little different: 1) the calories are spread over 4 rather than 3 meals per day and 2) EVERY meal is required to include a MUFA- monounsaturated fatty acid- The good news for me is that I like these foods- nuts, olives, dark chocolate...
Here are the pros & cons as I see them prior to starting:
-the plan looks easy and inexpensive to implement
-meals look tasty and I have choices after the 1st 4 days
-I don't think I'll feel deprived
-lots of useful tools such as an initial shopping list and 4-day jumpstart telling me exactly what to buy and eat
-there is an accompanying cookbook, which I bought- many of the recipes look delicious!
-the author lists health benefits of MUFAs, one of which includes an anti-inflammatory effect, which is one of my goals
-I can have a gourmet cupcake next weekend as one of my meals...wait, is that a pro or a con? Hmmmm...
-the diet is so-so in terms of healthiness- and since nothing is a "no-no" someone could theoretically eat a lot of crud on this one
-the reader is told that while exercise affects greater change, results can be acheived without it
This is a 32-day plan, so I'll check back in in a couple of weeks to report my progress and again at the end.

Last day- whew!

Today is the last day of the 7-day Detox, and I am really glad. On days 3-5 I had very little energy without grains or nuts. The really difficult day to get through was day 4- fast day. The veggie broth was really hard to down, and as a result I think I became somewhat dehydrated. That night as I tried to sleep I woke with a racing heart and dry mouth. The next morning brought- FOOD. I had never been so glad to see a bowl of sliced bananas & frozen blueberries in my LIFE. I did forget to mention that there is one other big PRO for this diet, however: it really attempts to address mind, body, and spirit. It is really integrative.
Hopefully at least my body is a little cleaner and prepared for the new diet I will start tomorrow- The Flat Belly Diet.
So, here are the vital stats for 7-day detox(1-5 scale):
My impression of the overall healthiness of this diet: 5
Ease of implementing : 1 (not so easy)
Cost of implementing: 4 (fairly high cost)
Feeling of deprivation: 4 (felt pretty deprived)
Energy level: 2 (not my usual level- found it hard to exercise and wanted to go to bed early)
Pounds lost: 1(hopefully not just water and/or poop :))

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Day 3

Well, I successfully and rather easily weaned myself from morning coffee by simply cutting down by 1 oz. per day the week prior to beginning this diet. The night before I started I went a little crazy though and gave myself something to detox FROM: whole wheat pasta(not allowed on diet) with cream sauce (not allowed), a hunk of yummy bread from a local bakery(not allowed), some local cheese(not allowed) and a half bottle of wine(DEFINITELY not allowed).
I am on day 3 of this 7-day plan, and I am better able to see some of the pros and cons now. I also have a question.
-Extremely healthy diet- no quibble there
-It takes up a lot of time! I am doing a lot of cooking and special-drink-preparing. Jordan called the mandatory 2x per day smoothies "putrid". The house is messier than usual. It's all worth it, right?
-I am again lamenting that meal plan/recipe choices are for the most part not included. I'm finding it especially difficult on the 2 days where I am ONLY to eat fruits & veggies- no nuts or grains even(luckily olive oil ok)! For lunch today I had a bowl of sliced bananas & frozen blueberries and a baked sweet potato with olive oil, salt & roasted garlic. Not bad. I'm running out of ideas, though...
-the diet calls for no dairy or refined sugar, but encourages the use of alternative milks such as almond or rice for the recommended smoothies- problem is, most of those alternative milks contain...sugar.

-If the sauna is supposed to help me "sweat out toxins", won't those toxins be right on my skin still when I'm done and have the potential to be re-absorbed? I can see taking a quick shower right after to get them off, but won't my pores be all open from the heat, allowing my skin to absorb ickiness such as chlorine from the shower water? What is the solution to this conundrum, I wonder? And why are there signs outside the sauna saying only short visits are safe, but this diet recommends 30-60 min.? Hmmmmm...

Tomorrow is the fast day- not looking forward to that. I prepared a special detox broth that I am supposed to sip throughout the day. Basically you chop up every icky vegetable you can think of, throw in a couple of decent ones for good measure, add water and boil for an hour. Strain, and the resulting liquid is the product. Did I mention that I am not looking forward to fast day?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Preparing for D-Day

I turned 39 last month, and in this final year before the big 4-0 I am determined to get in the best shape of my life. To that end, I am planning to test 4-6 diet/detox/exercise plans in 2010. I hope that my guinea pig status will benefit YOU by saving you some time, money and effort in avoiding the plans that don't show good result/effort ratios.
A few years ago I felt really good when I was on The Maker's Diet- no weight loss, but that wasn't my goal. But at this point, my ideal includes 1) losing 7-10 lbs. 2) losing dangerous abdominal fat 3) toning and building muscle- not quite "Madonna arms", but somewhere between where I am now and that...? Paul said he doesn't believe I can do a chin-up. Hmph. Maybe I can't NOW, but I so WILL. I'm gonna get all Sarah Connor from the original 'Terminator' movies. 4) Controlling my Lupus/inflammation. This is critical! Much of the literature I've read indicates that vegan and possibly gluten-free is the way to go to meet this goal, and some of these plans fall into that category. The first one does. It's actually only a 7-day detox plan. 4 days are vegan, 1 day is fasting, and the remaining 2 days I would describe as maybe... 'Vegan on Crack'?
While obtaining the plan itself costs you nothing, the recommended supplements do have a price tag attached, particularly in the case of "pectasol". I am on the lookout for cheap pectasol this week, so if you know of a good source, please comment below.
The website for this plan is www.fammed.wisc/integrative/modules You will see a number of patient handouts linked on this page. I will be doing the 7-day Detox plan.
Preparations to begin:
1) clear house of tempting, unhealthy foods not on the diet (by shoving them down my gullet)
2) wean myself of caffeine by reducing my morning cup of coffee by 1 oz. per day
3) create menus for the 6 days which fit the 'allowable foods' criteria, because only a few beverage and soup/broth recipes are actually included.
4) shop for supplements and recipe items
5)mentally prepare

What I like about the plan:
1) very healthy- sound in the recommendations, and very integrative
2) meets my anti-inflammatory needs
3) I can do anything for one week!

Concerns about the plan:
1) It only lasts a week- how much detox will actually occur?
2) I wish the creator would devise a number of recipes to choose from which fit the criteria. I am not normally a person who likes to be told what to do, but in the area of diet & exercise, the more "rules", structure, and guidance, the better.
3) The one recommendation I refuse to follow on fast day is taking an enema. Not. Gonna. Happen. Also this plan recommends a sauna for sweating out the toxins, and I do not have access to one. However, I sweat like a pig on my exercise bike, so maybe that will be sufficient?
I plan to start this diet next week, so I will report back during and after to share my results and thoughts at that time.