I’ve lost the weight loss after pregnancy plot. Plateu central. Mojo has left the building. And I was doing so well! I don’t understand why it happens. Well, I do – One day you’re fine, the next you make a little compromise, nothing serious, the next day another, and then before you know it you’re eating a battered sausage and chips.
Last week Dan from Sound Mind and Body challenged me to stop drinking for 30 days. Firstly, Dan is doing a 30 day ‘extreme’ diet because he’s about to turn 40 so I guess this is some sort of mid-lifey?? (Just kidding Dan!) He’s written a great post about how to get in the zone for weight loss that I highly recommend you read – Dan takes will power to a whole new level and he’s shared the inner workings of his mind!! The plan of attack is especially good and is partly the inspiration for this post…
Anyway, drinking is the root of nearly all my bad decisions so I was well up for the challenge – I managed 6 days. We had the week from hell, literally. From someone whirling into our house, turning upside down and then leaving without so much as a thank you (we weren’t burgled, don’t worry….just emotionally burgled by an ungrateful teenager!), to Reuben waking 2 and 3 times a night, and ending with my parents’ house flooding during the torrential down poor on Saturday (it is virtually uninhabitable now – totally heart-breaking).
*Warning the rest of this post reads like my very own self-help manual!*
BUT, do you know what I’ve learnt from this? Bad things happen all the time and if I let them stop me achieving what I want to do, I’ll never achieve anything. So every morning when I get up at the ungodly hour Reuben decides is appropriate I have 2 options:
1. I let my tireness dictate what I eat and do (which means drink 2 gallons of coffee and eat things that I don’t actually want and won’t make me feel better and I’ll wake up feeling worse tomorrow, continue cycle)
2. I wake grateful for what I have. I take control. I stop wallowing. I JUICE!
Note: Choose 2! Choose 2!
Weight loss after pregnancy – Why I juice
So now I shall let you in on a secret. Juicing is my thing. It gives me a spark. I feel healthy, full of energy, and I wake up with my head singing “Oh! What a beautiful mooooorrrrning”. It’s incredibly annoying for the people around me as not only am I not really doing ‘fun’ things (read drinking booze/coffee or eating chips/cupcakes/chocolate) with them but I’m also full of the joys of spring. My friends and family don’t get it. They think I’m weird, a fad-dieter. They think I’m starving myself. I’m not and here’s WHY I JUICE:
- I love the taste – in the morning, when you’ve just woken up this is the most thirst quenching thing ever, and what’s more it’s so full of goodness, you can literally feel all your cells sighing.
- I need less sleep – I go to bed later and get up earlier. I feel fine.
- I feel alive – I can imagine this sounds ridiculous. This morning I woke feeling tired, emotional, bloated, minging. When I juice basically I wake up feeling good, full of energy, bursting with ideas, mega productive, dare I say it, sexy too. Isn’t that what feeling alive should be like?
- My skin, hair and nails improve massively. No more flaky nails and zitty face. Juicing is SOOOOO good for you, I don’t have space to write about all the benefits but you’ve got to look after the inside to get the outside to glow and there’s your evidence!
- Oh, and I lose weight – yep, it falls off.
- This isn’t a fad diet – I’ve been juicing since January 2007. I always come back to juice time and again because I know how good it feels when I’m in the zone. I am a better person to be around, I’m motivated, I love more, I do more, I work harder (and I’m thinner).
Day 4 of Hardcore Juicing (see below) – Out running on Good Friday at 7am feeling a million dollars (that’s my heart rate monitor to prove I was working hard and not just enjoying a stroll along the beach!)
OK, so what is juicing?
When I say I’m juicing I have 3 versions:
- Hardcore – I have 5 juices a day and that’s it. No food. That’s a bit hardcore and you don’t want to and shouldn’t do it for too long. If I’m doing a hardcore juice I aim to do 5 days of solid juicing and that’s when the magic happens and I start to feel amazing.
- Semi-hardcore – I have 2 or 3 juices a day and something for tea. I feel so much better in the morning if I just have a juice for tea and eat at lunch time instead but I find that much more challenging, especially when I’m making Mike’s dinner! The day is in danger of becoming a not hardcore day.
- Not hardcore – I have a juice for breakfast and eat lunch and dinner. Still getting lots of good nutrients but the more opportunities for eating, the more my brain talks me into eating naughty things!
Also, we’re not talking a glass of ‘from concentrate’ OJ, this is freshly picked (preferably organic) and home made! My favourite, go to juice recipe is…
- 3-4 apples,
- a handful of spinach,
- inch slice of ginger,
- inch slice of lemon,
- half a pineapple,
- half a cucumber,
- 2 sticks of celery
Blend with half an avocado and some ice.
That makes enough for breakfast and lunch! You think you’re going to go hungry on that? Think again, the avocado makes it creamy and rich and delicious.
You can replace things like the spinach with another leafy green in the fridge, like watercress. And if we have broccoli, I also put the stalk in (you know, the bit you’d normally throw away) – lots of goodness and you can’t taste the difference.
If you want some more details and some juice suggestions, drop me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d be happy to help.
How to juice
Despite how amazing I feel when I’m juicing I still fall off the wagon and get seduced by yummy things (that make me fat and miserable) so this is how I get back in the juicy zone and stay there…
- Have a goal – How long are you going to do it for and at what level? Until you reach a target weight? For the next 5 days? What treats can you have and when? etc. Be specific, use dates so your head knows the rules. Your head is the only thing that will hold you back! I actually find the stricter my diet is, the easier it is for me to stick to it
- Plan ahead – Get all the ingredients you need for the next 5 days, no excuses brain
- Prepare as much as you can the night before – Particularly if you’re not a morning person!…don’t give yourself the opportunity to talk yourself out of it when you’re bleary eyed at 5/6/7am or whatever time you’re little angel decides it’s playtime
- Don’t let yourself get hungry – I tend to make 3 or 4 juices in the morning and keep them in flasks so I can have them when I need them. I also drink lots of water, the odd green tea and peppermint or camomile tea to tide me over between juices. The difficult bit is making Mike and Reuben’s tea – stay strong, it’s not forever – oh, and do it while you’re drinking a juice. It’s a lot easier if you aren’t hungry
- Avoid alcohol and coffee – these two fellas are my triggers to failure. I do really well, cut them out, feel great. Then one day I fancy a coffee. What’s the harm? Well, one coffee knocks your bits and pieces out of line, making you hungry and tired, so you reach for either another coffee or worse. A biscuit. Same goes for booze except it’s a LOT quicker for me. 1 glass = 4 glasses… followed by snacks. Not to mention the next day your head is going to be doing its darndest to talk you out of anything except a bacon sandwich and a can of pop
- Be grateful – Every time your head has even the slightest tantrum (I can’t be arsed. Sod it, I’m having some coco pops), remind yourself of how lucky you are to be able to feel good, and slimmer, and happier and more productive, and, and, and…!
Listen up brain. I was talking to you too and we’re back on the wagon tomorrow. No excuses!
May the juice be with you…I want to drink that NOW!!
What do you recon? Fancy a go, or do you still not get it? If you do want more details, send me an email to email@example.com. I look forward to hearing from you!
This post is dedicated to Dan, it’s his Birthday today. Happy Birthday! Dan remains the only person I’ve ever managed to win over to the juice side, despite my best efforts. Jon (as in Kerry who sometimes comments on posts and put me in touch with Grow up Green the real nappy company), who Dan and I used to live with, coined the term ‘juice cult’ because Dan and I really were that evangelical! Go on, have a juice.