Monday, March 02, 2015

Master Cleanse Day 4

Holly in empathy

I slept better last night. The aches in my joints seem to have subsided. But oh the dreams!  I had a dream that I was eating a bag of onion sour cream potato chips with a sour cream onion dip.  Seriously?  I’m dreaming about food?  Yes. I’m dreaming about food.   I also woke up yesterday with a snuffy nose so there went the one and only benefit I was experiencing of the MC.  Oops! Oh well.  But now now now is when things get better.  Or so says Westen. 

The author of Master Cleanse Made Easy also says that, if you experience diarrhea, which I was, stop drinking the SWF and the Smooth Move tea.  Now, let’s face it—the SWF is not a thrill but the tea is delicious.  So yay and bah humbug.  With that said, I’ll give up the tea because it’s not as delicious as not having diarrhea.

Hmmm . . . I seem to be talking in food and hunger metaphors. Not a coincidence, I’m sure.

Anyway, I was super tired on my 4th day.  Disappointing.  I read a little but I’m not as immersed in the book as I would like so I drifted into watching movies on television.  Old movie musicals.  Perfect mindless fluff for a sleepy and unfocused brain.  Today I am on Day 5.  By day’s end I’ll have made it halfway through.  But if the diarrhea returns, according to Westen I should stop the MC.  Not sure if we should cross our fingers for the diarrhea to stay away or return.  I’ll let you decide what you’re crossing your fingers for and let you know whether I’m still on the cleanse or not tomorrow!

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Master Cleanse Day 3

This is the book that I've reviewed and why I'm doing the cleanse.

On my third day, I woke up and noticed I was able to breathe.  Normally, I wake up with a slightly stuffed nose, sometimes one side completely stuffed up.  But I woke up able to breathe easily and with no need to blow my nose.  When you consider how much dust and dirt there is around here as a result of the renovations, this was quite a surprise.

This was not the only pleasant surprise. I won’t say I didn’t experience some hunger throughout the day.  However, I didn’t feel overwhelmed with hunger.  Westen encourages drinking some of the blend every time you feel hungry which is precisely what I do.  And I’m drinking a lot of water as well.  Between the two, I seem to be doing well. 

Unfortunately, by the end of the day, my joints were beginning to ache and throb.  This is supposed to be one of the numerous signs of your body’s detoxing.  On the plus side, it’s also supposed to pass.  I simply need to drink plenty of water, which I can easily do because that’s what I have been doing.

Today is my weekly weigh-in and, one of the so-called benefits of doing the Master Cleanse, is weight loss.  Bear in mind, the author of the book did say that I’ll likely regain whatever weight I lose so I am not too attached to the results.  Yes, I lost 0.8 lb (0.45 kg) but, let’s be honest, I could have lost that while enjoying salads and eggs and roasted chicken and . . . I’m making myself hungrier.  Anyway, so far the only benefit I’ve experienced from the cleanse has been a clearer nasal passage but everything says that on Day 4 it all really kicks in.  More energy.  Clarity.  And I’ll start burning fat for fuel. I’m checking my ketone levels and hope to see evidence of this last one because I know for sure I don’t feel more energetic or focused just yet. 

So onto Day 4 when I should and hope to start reaping what I’m slowly sowing . . . or sipping, as it were.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Master Cleanse Day 2

Renovations go slowly.

Abstinence leaves room for observation.  When I was working with my doctor and a nutritionist to see what improvements could be made in my diet to help me lose weight.  The only problem they could find with my diet was that I wasn’t eating enough calories.  So it doesn’t surprise me to say that, although I am hungry, I don’t feel that I’m consumed with hunger. The MC drink itself is tasty enough and the cup of peppermint tea was a lovely change of pace. 

Because of Rob’s diabetes, our meals are scheduled.  We eat lunch and dinner at the same time every day.  I am usually up earlier than he is so my breakfast is earlier. Otherwise, we eat almost everything together.  I also snack, typically on cheese or mixed nuts or raw veggies.   Sometimes, I “remember” to snack when my hands start to shake because of low blood sugar. 

But I noticed the other day, as I was preparing the food for the dogs, I realized that I have gotten into the habit of having some cheese whenever I feed the dogs.  Is this just another way for me to schedule more food into my diet?  Or is it a habit to eat something when I’m feeding the dogs?  Hmmmm . . .

When I ease myself out of the MC, Rob and I are going to be looking more closely at our portion sizes.  He found something on ebay about which I’ll be writing more after the cleanse. In the meantime, I confess I’m finding the whole deprivation thing easier than I thought I would, especially given the lack of variety in what I am allowed to enjoy.  But Westen says that the most challenging days are typically the second and third and, so far, I’ve only made it through the second. We’ll see how today goes.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Master Cleanse Day One


You know how in those movies where people are lost at sea and dying of thirst they are warned “Don’t drink the saltwater?”   There’s a reason for that and, if you know the reason, then you’ll fully appreciate why the first part of the MC is unpleasant.

The night before I had made my Salt Water Flush (emphasis intentional) to ensure the salt fully dissolved.  It worked and, to be honest, the SWF was not as unbearable to drink as I had expected.  Westen recommends using a straw to sort of force the drink to the back of the throat. That may be why it was easier for me to drink than say, gargling with salt water, which I hate to do.

The effect is fast.  About 15 minutes after I finished the quart of SWF, I was in the bathroom and pretty much staying there.  I washed my hands so often that the skin started feeling raw.  Other parts of me felt raw too but I’ll leave that to your experiential imagination and move on.

I didn’t have any of the actual Master Cleanse drink until over an hour later. I wasn’t feeling hungry.  (Funny, having diarrhea doesn’t make me feel hungry.)  But when I finally had my first sip I was both pleasantly and unpleasantly surprised. It tastes almost like a hard cider at first. Then the cayenne pepper kicks in.  I thought it might be too spicy for me (because when it comes to spicy foods, I am pathetic) but either I got used to it or my initial few sips were simply an unexpected reaction. 

As you can see from the photo, however, I didn’t finish the gallon.  According to the book, you’re supposed to drink 8-10 8-ozs cups a day.  I simply didn’t do it.  It wasn’t that I wasn’t hungry but I don’t react every time I am hungry and consciously drank water between every glass of the concoction I drank because, doing a cleanse or not, I was determined to get in my daily amount of water.

I mustn’t have been feeling too bad because, not only did I not drink an entire gallon of the mixture, but I forgot to enjoy an afternoon cup of peppermint tea.  Maybe I won’t forget today.  We’ll see.  In the meantime, I begin day 2 and am already gaining some insight.  But I’ll share more about that tomorrow.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Master Cleanse Begins


Today I officially begin the Master Cleanse and I'll write all about my full day's experience tomorrow.  But I thought I'd go ahead and share some of the preparation I did for the MC.  In her book, Westen suggests buying Smooth Move tea and having a cup the night before you start the cleanse.  I'd never had the tea before and I confess to not being the best tea drinker. I'm not a purist.  The idea of drinking plain tea--no honey or anything--wasn't exactly my cup of tea, if you know what I mean. But I am trying to write a fair review and that means doing what the book suggests.

Guess what?  The tea is actually quite tasty. I didn't add anything to it and was surprised by how naturally sweet it tasted.  I could easily see wanting to enjoy a cup at any time.  Only, you know, it's called "Smooth Move" for a reason and there are all sorts of warnings on the package about not overdoing it.

Now look closely at what it says on the box under Drink responsibly because I was surprised to see these words:  Smooth Move products are not meantto be used for cleansing or as diet aids.

Oops. I guess somebody didn't tell the author this or she didn't read the label. Nonetheless, I enjoyed my cup and will probably keep this tea around for those times when I need a little . . . loosening.

Anyway, before I went to bed, I mixed up my quart of salt water (2 tsps sea salt in a quart of water) and got a glass and straw ready for the next day. I also made up a gallon of the MC drink itself.  Yes, I knew I would be home and able to make it fresh throughout the day but I also figured that the less time I spend in the kitchen, surrounded with temptation, the better.

Temptation is part of the reason I chose to start this cleanse on a Thursday.  Rob is working.  I make his lunch but that is all.  I don't have to touch or be near food for the rest of the day.  And I've already warned him that I may ask him to make his own lunch.  We'll see how it goes.  I have all of my mental ducks in a row.  I do not have all of my food stuff ducks in a row.  But I'm starting. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Skeptical About the Master Cleanse


Tomorrow I start the Master Cleanse because I read and reviewed a book about it and figure that, to fully review the book, I should at least give it a go.  Truth is I’m skeptical.  I love doing juice fasts but this Master Cleanse doesn’t sound like much fun at all.  At least with a juice fast you have some variety. On the Master Cleanse you drink the same thing every day.  For ten days.  No wonder so many people are saying “I couldn’t do it” when I mention I’m giving it a try.  I’m not even sure I can do it but I’m going to give it my best effort. 

And I want to write about the experience here in a my blog so let me tell you my first thoughts regarding this Master Cleanse.

It’s expensive.

I mean, holy cow!  I’m supposed to use fresh lemons, preferably organic. Guess what?  Lemons right now cost about $1 each.  And in 10 days I’ll go through between 60-80 lemons (or so says the book).  Then there’s the maple syrup.  I need 2 quarts of organic Grade B maple syrup.  It costs over $30 a quart.  That’s already over $100 for ONE person.  Add to that the cayenne pepper which, thankfully, we already had in the house, and the Smooth Move tea and let’s just say it—this is not a cost-friendly plan.

We ended up getting bottled organic lemon juice because it was cheaper than fresh lemons.  Sorry. Some compromises simply had to be made.  And we had to buy 7 bottles of the stuff anyway.  Ugh.  But I’m ready for it.

So yeah.  I may not buy into this whole detox thing and I am not sure how this is superior to doing a juice fast but I am curious and like the idea of its being a challenge, a way to physically push myself.  And maybe blogging about it will get me back in the habit of blogging, which is something I haven’t been doing lately. Feel free to join me in this, if you can afford it, or live vicariously through my blog posts.  I start tomorrow.  

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Feeling Philosophical in '15

I know.  I know.  I said I wouldn't be around (online) much because the old laptop can be frustratingly slow and I'm going to be super busy with getting the great room ready for whatever repairs are on our immediate horizon but then I saw this:



I immediately thought it would be interesting (maybe even fun) to read one section a week (there are 52 weeks in the year) and since it's only $1.99 I simply had to share it.  If you do grab a copy (click the pic to get your copy), maybe we can read it together?  I'm going to suggest this to my children and some of my friends in real life too.

Happy New Year, Everyone!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Not Quite How I Wanted to End the New Year



I’m typing my last post of 2014 on my laptop which is about to be shipped off to the manufacturer for repairs.  We will be boxing it up and sending it away tomorrow (Wednesday, 31 December).  I’ll be using my older, much slower, laptop mostly to keep my inbox from becoming too cluttered and apply for jobs.

That’s what I’ll be doing in between other things.  The largest room in our home, which I call “the great room” because I think it’s great, had a leak in the roof. That was quickly patched up and with plans to do more than a quick patch job when the weather is warm again.  But then we noticed a problem in the floor.  There’s a squishy spot and since the floor is carpet over concrete, it’s safe to say that the floor shouldn’t be spongey.

 It would seem the leak has been working its way into the foundation of the floor. 

So today Marc leaves for home (Chicago) and tomorrow, on top of sending off my laptop, we’ll be packing up all of the holiday decorations so we can then move all of the furniture out of the great room.  Odds are the carpet will need to be replaced and all of this is going to create quite a bit of chaos in our home.  Instead of having a quiet, reflective lead in into the new year, it’s going to be work, organizing, cleaning, packing up, unpacking, etc.

On the plus side, I’ve long wanted to rearrange the furniture in the great room and Rob has resisted it. However, with everything being taken out, it only makes sense that we rearrange things at least a little.

So I expect I won’t be online much between now and maybe 14 January. Assuming the floor repairs are completed by then, I’ll have rearranged my favorite room in the house.  If not, then I might not be online a lot because there will still be a lot that’s being done in our house. 

Until the repairs (floor and laptop) are completed, we will be in a state of chaos and limited online time.  I’ll be reading. I’ll be writing.  And maybe I’ll find pockets of time in which I can quietly reflect on what has been a truly wonderful, it not necessarily life altering, year.   

Monday, December 15, 2014

It's a Wonderful (Murderous) Movie

I was in my twenties before I finally saw It’s a Wonderful Life.  My friends had all seen it because, back then, the movie was aired repeatedly because of copyright issues and, eventually, NBC became the only station allowed to air it and then only a few times a season.   So while everyone seemed to be dead familiar with the movie, I was completely oblivious.

For years I assumed this was because we didn’t have a television.  I mean, I had seen some holiday specials, probably thanks to being at my Aunt Frances’, being babysat.  Most of my television watching occurred while at my aunt’s apartment.  (I even saw the first lunar landing and Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon.)  Of course, holiday specials only last an hour, or a mere 30 minutes, while It’s a Wonderful Life lasts hours, with commercials.

Recently I learned the truth.  My mother hates the movie.  Not just dislikes it considerably.  She loathes it. Two years ago she said, “If you watch That Movie, I’ll kill you to put you out of your misery.”  Of course, this is the same woman who allowed me at the age of 6 or 7 to drag her repeatedly to see The Sound of Music because I somehow fell in love with it and seeing the movie more than once became an imperative.  (Given my age, I’m assuming the movie was playing at a revival theater where the tickets were reduced to a reasonable $1.  I’m also assuming that she will someday forgive me for making her take me to see it seven times.)

My mother hates other sentimental movies (Sweet November, Dark Victory, Forrest Gump) but she has never promised to murder me if I were to watch, let alone like, any of them.  Clearly, It’s a Wonderful Life holds a special place in her heart, obviously a very different place in her heart from the place the myriad of Frank Capra fans keep it.