Thursday, May 31, 2012

Beyond a Cleanse - Day 4

Happiness Exercise:I did the Advocare cleanse a couple months ago and was using that 10 days and then the 14 day challenge afterwards to get used to eating raw fruits and vegetables, cooked chicken and fish, and drinking water and tea (I was fashioning my diet off of raw and paleo). The cleanse had some pills and a fiber drink in the morning, and then an energy drink. I did it with a friend who does it every 3 months (it's coming up 3 months soon).

I've never been a "I have to have coffee" person, but I love the warm liquid sensation in the mornings (it took awhile to switch to tea since it's not sweet and I don't like adding sweetener) and it might not have been the caffiene withdrawal, but the Advocare cleanse made my head hurt like crazy and my body super tired! After the initial 10 days I had ridiculous amounts of energy. I don't know if the cleanse worked or not, but having done that and now this, I realize this is so much more than a cleanse. It's how I want to live the rest of my life!

I was literally counting down the 10 days on the Advocare cleanse. With the raw, I had to think what day it was! Now, I might count days later on, but right just seems natural. If anything I'm looking what day of the week it is for menu stuff!

Kind of an awesome sensation to know you're on the right path. :)

Weight Loss Tip:
Simple tip to a flat tummy quickly: cut way down on salt.
Salt causes your cells to retain water. By decreasing your salt intake, you will loose water weight, and over a few days of cutting your salt intake in half you can loose about 5-10 lbs of water weight. The RDA, recommended daily allowance, of salt is 1 teaspoon. Put aside 1/4 or a 1/2 teaspoon of salt to use on your meals for today. You don't have to use it all, but don't use more. As a rule, don't eat anything with salt added already, like chips, crackers, or processed food. One bag of even raw crackers can contain more than the RDA.

I am going to try this tomorrow! Set out 1/2 a teaspoon for the day and make sure that's all I'm using (including recipes). I haven't added extra salt to anything AFTER making it, but I've also not really measured when making recipes...just went by the taste.


Day 4 Journal Exercise
This part of this Program is designed to help you get to know yourself better. Self-knowledge is an important ingredient in health, and in this fast-paced world some of us don't have time to slow down and even find out what brings us joy. This exercise today, called "My Favorite Things", is very simple, just exploring in our journals or blogs some things that have made us happy or contributed to who we are today...Feel free to improvise on these exercises, with other categories of favorite things too...

My Favorite Things

--- My favorite music: techno (not all), drum & bass, electronic, orchestra (soundtracks), ambience

--- My favorite books: sci-fi and/or fantasy mainly with some self-helps thrown in

--- My favorite films: 5th Element, Finding Nemo, Star Wars Episode IV and VI, Avengers, Thor

--- My favorite places: the mountains, the beach, open field back home on the ranch, hiking trail, a lake (I realize these are not a specific spot, but I love all of them!)

--- My favorite other things: flowers, turtles, cats, anything miniature, bright colors, traveling

I half wanted to roll over and reset my alarm for a later time at 5am this morning. Instead I turned on the light and let my body adjust. The past couple days it's been stormy and the thunder has woken me up throughout the night. I did go to bed earlier than normal, so I'm sure I got enough sleep.
Tomorrow is definitely going to be interested! I've decided, after finding a driver, that I'm going to do the sedation with the procedure, which means I am not allowed to eat or drink 8 hours before...that means I stop after 7. No water?! No food?!  ....yikes... all other procedures I've had were in the morning so I just had to fast over night while sleeping; no biggie. Never had to fast all DAY! Luckily it's a light day...except I won't get to drink water :(  I imagine I won't want dinner either.
**TMI Alert**
Has anyone been having issues with bowel movements? 

Adventures with Ve-ghetti

Fruit Smoothie
   - 2 Grapefruits (juiced)
   - 2 Oranges (juiced)
   - 1 Banana
   - 1 Cup Frozen Strawberries (I bought a bunch on sale last week and froze them!)

Only had 2 more oranges, so I opted for grapefruit, since I have a TON of those. Definitely tasted tart! I liked it, though. Made a ton! Instead of drinking my tea on the way to work I took that drink.

Morning Workout:
2 Part Yoga

Trying to take it easy on workouts since I don't want to aggravate my SI joints anymore. I go for an injection tomorrow and hopefully that will help it!

Sunflower Seed Pate (basil + tarragon herbs)
3 Stocks Celery

Since I forgot to soak my sunflower seeds a day in advance (I make lunch the night before), I had to make the pate this morning. It took a bit longer than I had planned, but I think it turned out pretty good! I think I'd like more lemon in it next time. I've never had pate. What do you eat it with? Anything? By itself? I threw some celery into my lunch to spread it on. I was amused at soaking the sunflower seeds because they kept expanding. I had to add more water twice. They basically tripled their mass!

I wonder if these types of pates are meant to be eaten immediately. I had put it in my insulated lunch pale and when I pulled it out the outter layer had turned brown! Kind of like an avacado or guacamole does when it's exposed to air for a long while. I thought lemon juice prevented that? Wonder what it is that made it turn brown. Either way I about freaked out and started smelling it to make sure it was okay! It was literally just the outter part. The inside looked fine and it all tasted the same.

I might have eaten too much :(  My tummy feels extremely bloated right now and I'm burping a lot (sign I'm over stuffed). Oy...

Ugh, okay...hours later, I am STILL bloated and having a heck of a time! Don't think my tummy likes pate :(  or at least not couple hour old pate? I don't know... so far pate and chowder are no goes for making again! 
Afternoon Exercise:
30 min walk
Decided to cut back on the amount of nuts since a lot of recipes call for them and I'm sure I'm eating more than plenty! Glad to have found an apple that was super crisp! I've gotten several that seemed firm, but were kind of mushy. :(  
I didn't REALLY need to eat this. I wasn't hungry, but it was nearly time to head home and I knew I had to make a bunch of stops to groceries so I figured I'd eat it to keep myself satisfied. I was VERY full again afterwards. Still having trouble with the pate also.
1 Date (snack before making :P)
Forgot to grab oregano, so I sprinkled parsley over the top instead. Probably not the same...and I'm not really digging the taste when I eat it, so next time, oregano! The rest of it seems okay. I wouldn't consider it a favorite meal or anything or that it really qualifies as spaghetti. It seems to need some pepper...or salt. I'm trying to cut down on the latter, though, so I didn't add any!
5 Dates
I was hungry and craving something sweet!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Food Journal - Day 3

Woke up this morning kind of tired and groggy, but not as much as usual, which would have made me stay in bed. Only about 6 hours of sleep. Let's hope the energy flows throughout the day!
Orange (3) Banana (1) Smoothie
This was very light and refreshing! I enjoyed it and my belly is currently full. I probably should have waited a little longer to drink it as it's only 5:30, but I did bring an apple and almonds if I feel the need to have a snack before lunch (that chowder makes a lot!). 

Morning Exercise:

Didn't get my walk in this morning (I have a habit of getting on the computer and losing track of time doing meaningless things), but I did the 2 parts of yoga! Not fully in it mentally due to a certain feline pet that thinks any form of exercise in the living room is perfect opportunity for attention. I don't blame in, really since we don't get a lot of one-on-one time and I'm right THERE in what he probably thinks is his apartment. He's pretty cute.

I did stay and try to meditate for the full 5 min of the 2nd video.

Probably skipping the lunch time walk since it's been raining (though that's not a good excuse since I have 2 multi-story parking garages) and I missed nearly 2 hours of work with my doctor appointment. Need to make up the time!

Celery & Coconut Chowder

When I made this last night I was thinking "man...that's a lot of chowder!" and then "I bet I eat it all" and now...even after having waited 6.5 hours between breakfast and lunch...I've made it halfway through and am completely stuffed. I was starving around 11:30 but waited just a bit longer with the help of water and tea. Now I'm staring at it like it's about to be dinner. Which, it might.

I snacked on this up until about 1...I started eating at just before noon (have about 1/4 left at this point). Probably should have said enough is enough after 20 min. Right now I'm experiencing a headache and sleepiness. The sleepiness I can gaurantee is mainly because of the space heater at my feet (it's so cold in this building!) being on too high. I've since turned it off. My head still feels queezy. Need to sip more water!

1oz Raw Almonds

Love this snack :)  I ate it a little earlier because my stomach was feeling queezy and I hoped that it would help settle it down.

Celery & Coconut Chowder

Still here at work since I missed a bit for a doctor visit. I don't know that I will make the chowder again. It has gone straight through me (ew). Might have been the coconut. I just grabbed one from the store and didn't notice that when I got home, it actually smelled fermented and I could see a few tiny little mold spots on the outside...and it was a little slimy in places. I was quite sad at this, but decided to open it anyway. The inside didn't have any off smell (though I've never opened and smelled a coconut before). But, maybe that is my problem. Who knows.
Apple Pie
Sprinkle of Cinnamon
1 Date (I was kind of hungry when making it...)
Holy heck, this is awesome! I had to add a bit more olive oil to the crust because my little Ninja is not quite powerful enough to do nuts beyond powdering them (I made cashew butter and about burnt the sucker out!). The apple part I probably didn't have to blend so much, but because I used a small container to blend in, I had to add the rest of an apple after I started. It does make a wonderful applesauce ;)  
I don't think I'm really that hungry to eat this all, but I might. It's nearly 9! I didn't get done with work until 7:30. I read someone else's post about having super high energy after breakfast and then dipping low after lunch. Darn you celery chowder! Darn you! They also mentioned that the serving was 2 for that chowder, which makes sense, so I kind of panicked and went to make sure I hadn't eaten 2 servings! It says one, but it really could have been 2. If I make it again, it'll be 2!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Discovering Happiness - Day 2

I was pleasantly surprised to weigh myself this morning and find I was 10 pounds less than what I thought and less than where I ended my previous cleanse (Advocare 10 Day) a couple months ago! The measurements are always a crapshoot because I never remember or get EXACTLY where I took them before. Last cleanse I actually gained around 3 inches in my midsection, which made no sense. I gave myself some sort of idea where I should measure for day 21.
I'm excited to have gone grocery shopping, though I realized that I probably should have gone ahead and gotten some of Thurs-Sundays since tomorrow is Wednesday. I also realized that I got a lot of the foods for items on Mon and Tues, which are already over. Here's hoping I can use some of them in the next batch! I'm sure the herbs will come in handy. I didn't get all organic. I shop at Sprouts, which is a commercialized farmers market. They have a selection of organic, but not that big and the deals are in the regular items. I walked out of there spending $60 on all the food (minus an avocado, orange, and one or two other items that I knew I didn't need). Pretty sure I could have gotten the herbs cheaper elsewhere, but I'll learn! There's also some items that will last me awhile, such as the olive oil and dates. 
Day 2 Happiness Exercise: Carving Out Time for Thinking

I give myself time to think in the car, usually. I dislike listening to the radio because it's just the same songs over and over and the commercials are irritating. So, I'll either switch it off completely, or listen to audio books. I tend to do books on the way to work and silence on the ride home.
Today I realized that my mind was kind of all over the place. I kept having thoughts, but they weren't full thoughts. My mind would race with these things and never complete. 
One of my big thinkers today was trying to fit it all in. There's not enough time in the day! I have no idea how I'm supposed to do yoga, meditate, go for a walk, and get ready for the day before work. Then, after work, finish up 3 journal/blog entries, make dinner, make up lunch for the next day, exercise, do something creative, and read before going to bed. There's even some more items I'd like to do "daily"! I think if I wake up around 5, I can get the morning ritual done. The evenings are going to be rough, though. Maybe not with renewed energy from this lifestyle change? One can hope! 

Day 2 Journal Exercise: Facing our Fears...
I am sure I have a ton of fears, little ones, big ones. I'm sure they all add up to blocking my full potential. I have a fear of failing; failing to meet others expectations, failing to finish what I've started, failing to make something of myself. I fear disappointing people (a whole lot, actually). I fear losing friends (for whatever reason I want everyone to love me). I fear being alone. I fear settling down. I fear being stuck in a rut. I fear being tied down (relationship and location). 

I've been learning to live day by day and just take it as it comes, but it's hard not to think about the future and how I'm not doing this, getting there, making something of myself, or heck, even being as good as the others around me. It's hard to shift my mentality and I'm sure I'll be working on it until the day I die, but at least I realize this and can slowly make that transition. As for the other fears...well. I have no idea how to get past THOSE just yet, but listing them out really helps!

Back to the Grind! (Day 2)

This weekend seriously has wiped it out of me. Darn you sun! I meant to get up and go for a walk, but as soon as the alarm sounded I rolled over and reset it for an hour later. Guess I'll be doing my walkin' on my lunch and after work/MRI/grocery shopping! 
Cup Orange Juice (4 Oranges - mine must be much smaller than their recipes!)
So glad I had oranges from Friday that I could use for this! I am not sure how my body will take all the sugar from the oranges with the gastric bypass, but I am trying it anyway! My nose started running after I finished the glass, which is my indication of being full. I can feel it sloshing around in my belly. Just hope the hunger is contained for awhile! Now to figure out what I can piece together for a lunch...

Romaine Lettuce (about 2 cups)
1 Avocado
1 Red Bell Pepper
1.5 Stocks Celery
Lemon Juice
Olive Oil
Dried Chives

Could not wait to eat!! Started at 11:30 rather than waiting any longer. The OJ lasted longer than I thought, but I tried to drown any hunger pains with tea and water (I didn't notice the recipe was for 16 oz rather than only 8, which is what I made; apparently my oranges are smaller than the ones in the recipe!). I don't know why I feel GUILTY over eating early to the point of justifying it - lol. Pretty much wiped out the last of my produce at home. I have 1 more avocado,3 oranges, half a lemon, and a lime. Digging on this salad, though I've already had a runny nose and am full and barely halfway through it. I like the freshness and zing of the lemon. The avocado kind of acts as another dressing as you mix it all together, which is awesome. When I poured on the lemon and olive oil dressing I was thinking I didn't really have enough ("oh no! I need more dressing!" -- flash backs to adding a TON of ranch dressing on everything), but as I stirred, the avocado kind of melted into it all.

Been feeling pretty tired and run down from the weekend, but I have some good energy going. I know that water consumption can help and I usually try to drink a cup whenever I'm feeling tired. I'm sure the clean food intake has helped as well!

Craving 1:
Chocolate. I don't know WHY I feel like after lunch I need some sort of dessert. I have, in the past, brought  a Ghiradelli or equal brand name 70-90% chocolate square to have after work that I'd crush up into little bits and slowly melt on my tongue. I have also gone into the bin at work and bought a candybar or peanut M&Ms. I am certainly not going to now, but that urge to do so is there! I'd go ahead and grab my apple snack, but that leaves my afternoon with nothing and I have to go straight to my MRI after work and THEN grocery shop before I get home to where I can make some dinner (I might actually have to just snack on stuff as I get things washed and cut up for tomorrow and skip dinner all together since I want to get the workout and another walk in as well).

1 oz Raw Almonds

This has literally been my snack for years. I love taking a bite of apple and then popping in a couple almonds and chewing together! SO GOOD!
5 Dates
It was a long time between the apple snack and dinner. While grocery shopping I sampled some pitted dates I was buying. Don't think I've ever had them, honestly. Little sweet, but good! I've seen them in a ton of raw recipes and can't wait to try them out!
Salsa Kale Wraps
Topped with Fennel Seeds
I might have added a tad more cayenne pepper then intended! Lips are burnin'! Tastes amazing, though. I love fresh salsa. Before this, I would make similar and stick it in Mason Jars, then use it as my salad dressing. The tomato made it a little too runny for actual wraps, so I have been tossing pieces of kale into my salsa bowl and eat it kind of like soup - haha.
I've found myself having a TON more energy than I did this morning. I actually had to retitle this post because I had started out with "Sleepy Day 2" and while I was extremely tired this morning, I'm pretty wide awake right now!
3 x 34oz container and climbing
32oz of tea

Monday, May 28, 2012

Discovering Happiness - Day 1

Didn't get a whole lot of time to do any of the exercises as I was stuck in a car the majority of the day. I did get to write a lot in the morning, but that was handwritten in my journal and typing it in here doesn't seem much fun. I struggled with temptations of pancakes, honey roasted nuts, jerkey, and all sorts of other foods at the convenient stores we stopped at and the items picked up by my road buddies. I said no to everything, but oh was I tempted! It's pretty easy to say "no, thank you" right out of the gate, but if I sit and think or if there's some platter on the counter that I can see all the time, I will more than likely give in. It's a main reason I don't go into the kitchen at work because there's usually left over food on the table, candy in the drawers of the fridge, and chips on the counter. It's why I don't keep the stuff in my apartment! I'd eat it all in one sitting! Self control is a never ending battle for me.

I think I've decided that I will keep the public journal and reflect on the Happiness Exercises as well as the Journal Exercises. I'll include discussions on anything related to this cleanse, food, exercise, and my inner battles with it all.

I think my personal, handwritten journal might be more my philosophies on life.

Adventures in travel eating

I picked a heck of a time to start this 21 Day Cleanse, though it originally started out working just fine. I didn't anticipate being whisked away to the beach for the holiday weekend! I made due, though, despite the last 9 hours being in a car.
2x Banana
3x Herbal Tea
Woke up early and grabbed a banana, then realized I was still really tired and went back to bed. About an hour later I tried again! The weekend fun and sun has wiped me out. Aside from that i feel pretty upbeat. I have a headache and am still stuffed up from the cold that's plagued me the past week. Walked around the neighborhood where we were staying at in order to attempt to get some movement in for the day before the long trek back home.
1 oz Almonds
1/2 bag Mixed Lettuce
Olive Oil
Homegrown Tomato
Turned down some yummy homemade pancakes and butter biscuits! I kept thinking I wanted them and "it's the holiday!" plus "everyone else is eating them..." and also "I could start this cleanse tomorrow!", but, alas...I didn't give in. I waited an hour and had lunch. I still felt guilty about this meal (the almonds were after the salad) and I think it's because of the spices. I grabbed some mixed spices that looked a lot like Mrs. Dash, but I'm sure it had salt. I think the salt is what made me feel guilty adding it.
1 oz Almonds
Cup of Fruit (from Buckies gas station)
There is literally nothing healthy at a gas station...I'm glad we at least stopped at one such as Buckies, though because not only are they huge, have the cleanest, nicest facilities EVER, but also have a ginormous selection of food. They had big cups of assorted cut fruit that I snatched. I had another apple shortly after and I think that might have been too much. I felt so full and bloated! Trying to keep my water intake down as well, though I've already had over 3 cups of tea and just finished 1.5 bottles of my 34 oz container. I normally do 3 of those a day plus the tea, but since I'm traveling and don't want to stop every 45 min, I'll restrain!
1.5 oz Almonds
1 Apple
1 Banana
Not that this is much of a dinner, but I had brought 3 baggies full of almonds just for the travel day and bought the apples and bananas yesterday so I could at least have something for the car ride. Definitely an interesting first day for the cleanse! Tomorrow will also be off since I haven't been home to shop. Luckily I have some items that I bought Thursday that are still good: avocado, bell pepper, some lettuce (though I'm sure I'll have to pick it out), apples, strawberries and blueberries that I froze... it'll at least tide me over for the day and then I can hit the grocery store after work and actually follow the menu plan!
I will definitely be blogging my food diary publicly. I'm not sure about the other journal. I already write a journal daily and I love the feel of hand writing it, but that isn't a public blog. I also don't really want to blog 3 times in one day. I'll figure it out.

Introduction (21 Day Cleanse)

I found The Garden Diet while doing a raw search online. I kind of jumped at the 2 programs in hopes that I'd clean out my body and transition into a diet that I believe in! So, here I am! This are repeat posts from the online community.


Hello! My name is Jennifer, 28 years-old, and a current resident of Dallas, Texas. I say current because I've moved so much in the past couple years. No idea where I'd like to make a permanent home or if I ever will, but that's okay! I'm finding I don't really enjoy the hustle and crowded bustle of city life so much anymore. I love hiking in the mountains every weekend, dislike snow unless it's Christmas, and love the ocean in my front yard. Know of a place that fits the bill? Hehe...

I'm a graphic designer by trade, though, I'm 100% positive I do not want to do that the rest of my life. I'm at a stage where I'm trying to figure out what it is I love doing so much (narrowing it down!) as to make it a living. I'll get there eventually, but for now I'll be working to pay off the student loans!

Been overweight my entire life, though I had spurts of health trends where I dropped a lot. I decided to have gastric bypass in 2008 and went from 365 pounds to 181 at my lowest. I'm currently at 200 due to improper eating habits and a car accident that had limited my activity levels (working with doctors to fix my back). I don't so much care about the numbers, I'm more interested in being physically fit and feeling amazing.

I grew up on a cattle ranch in Oregon and then Wyoming, so most of my dietary life has been focused on meat. I lost the taste for red meat years ago (I'll eat it occasionally) and really only enjoy turkey and salmon. Over the better part of a year I have been exploring and studying eating the paleo way and then raw. I completely believe in the benefits and natural reasons behind eating this way and have been transitioning these last few months. I was eating chicken and fish, though I'm not a big fan of chicken, so not eating it will work just fine!

I'm excited to participate in this, start a new journey, and further develop and explore the inner me. I'll also be doing daily meditation and something creative (writing, cooking, art, etc).

On two side notes, the beginning and end of this will be a challenge in self control and being able to accommodate for myself with everyone eating mostly meat and potatoes. I was randomly (very last minute) flown to the beach this weekend by my friends and won't be home until Monday night. I have some fruit and almonds for Monday travel. Luckily I have some produce at home for Tuesday, but it's not the menu. I'll be able to shop Tuesday night at least!

The last weekend I go out of town for my 10 year class reunion, which coincides with the town chili cook-off. Then I'll at least have a close grocery store and the rest of the knowledge and know-how of the rest of the challenge.

Starting Measurements

Height: 5'10"
Weight: 191 lbs
Neck: 13"
Arm (R/L): 14"/14"    (middle of upper arm)
Chest: 38"    (relaxed, shoulders back)
Breasts: 39.5"    (black bra)
Waist: 39"    (bulge)
Hips: 47.5"    (widest part)
Thigh (R/L): 26"/26"    (widest part)
Knee (R/L): 19"/19"     (just above kneecap)
Calf (R/L): 16.5"/16.5"    (widest part)
Ankle (R/L): 9.25"/9.5"