Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What I learned during my two week detox (ok......10 day detox)

"Eat Food
Not too much
Mostly plants."
Michael Pollen

I like to know what my clients are experiencing.  While coaching for Run On!, I tried Weight Watchers for a month, just to see if my runners were getting enough fuel.  Life time (my current place of employment) has a detox program, so I decided to try it to see how I felt while on the program and I felt it was time to experience a bit of self control.    I knew if I paid the money, I would likely be more consistent.

I wanted to try the detox at this time because I really allowed myself to start making poor dietary choices during the holidays and my weight and body fat percentage was starting to creep up.  Stepping away from sugar and an almost nightly glass of wine (or two) was my main goal for the program.
I will start by saying I did not follow the Detox to the key.  I tried, and I did mostly very well.
 (I will explain that later).
The protocol is 1 nutrient and fiber rich  shake a day the first week, and two the second week.  You eat real food, but no dairy, gluten, alcohol, canola oil, caffeine, soy or eggs.

Here's what worked FOR ME:

1.  I became very mindful of what I was eating.   This forced me to eat less processed food and more down to earth good stuff.  I learned to like vegetables for the taste of the vegetable, not for the taste of the butter.

2.  Green tea instead of a glass of wine at night.  This was hard, but now I actually get comfort in that warm mug of tea, sleep better at night, and feel better when that 4 am wake up call sounds.

3.  Less spikes in blood sugar.  By concentrating on eating healthy fats, fiber and protein; I was able to step off that roller coaster ride.

4. A protein shake with vitamins and fiber in the morning was a good habit to get into before heading into work or for a run, and an easy way to get in quality calories and ingredients.

What did not work for me:

1.  Day 3 was pretty miserable.  After 2 days of no coffee I was grouchy, and I was bloated from the extra fiber.  I felt like the Stay Puff Marshmallow man.
On the morning of day 4, I pooped 4 times before 10 am.

2. By the first weekend I needed a break.  I just wanted to enjoy food.  So I did.  Nothing too crazy, but I ate bread and had a couple beers.  Oh yeah- and started drinking coffee with almond milk in it again.  ;)

Day 8- Weekend over- back on the plan. (except for the coffee part)

4.  Day 10- long story short- I ended up putting in about 4 hours of exercise this day.  I was starving.  I couldn't understand why I was so hungry on this program, but in talking to some other trainers I think it was the fact that I was cutting calories just because my options were limited.  The no eggs thing was huge for me.  So on this day I called it.  I was no longer putting sugar in my coffee, no longer drinking wine in the evenings, and learned to love quality food as nature presents it to us.  Mission accomplished, lessons learned.  I went and got a sandwich on whole grain bread.

So- in conclusion.  Was it easy?   Absolutely not.
Worth it?  Yes- if only for the good habits I developed while on the program.
Going straight to the actual bio-metric results, I did lose a few pounds - but more significantly I lost 3% body fat and feel good about where I am heading into a big training cycle.

Quality food is quality fuel.
Lesson learned.

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