Sunday, September 1, 2013

Reboot Days 15-18 - Feeling Accomplished

* Fruity delicious snack!!

Tooty Frooty
- 1 nectarine (take out seed)
- 2-3 oranges
- 20-25 strawberries 
-1-2 pears 
(Creates about 30 oz's, it all really depends on the size of your produce, you can add more or use less)

I ended my reboot on Day 18. I miscalculated my dates, and realized that one of my best friend's 30th birthday dinner was coming up, and had to end my fast earlier than I wanted. It was well worth it though, because I really wanted to celebrate the end of her 20's with her! I know for sure, I could have kept going, to maybe even 30 days! However, my journey didn't end there. I planned to take 3 days off of fasting and juice just breakfast and lunch, while eating dinner, and then hop back on another reboot! There really isn't a rule that states how often you can fast, as long as you are feeling healthy and not feeling sick, or feeling anything out of the ordinary, then you should be fine to start up again when you are ready. Of course, check in with your doctor to make sure everything is still okay.

Mango Kiwiberry
- 10-11 carrots
- 2 ripe mangos
- 10-15 strawberries
- 3-4 kiwis
(Creates about 30 oz's, depending on size of produce)


* Super delicious breakfast or snack! I love love mangos!!

New Green Twist
- 1 cucumber
- 2 green apples
- 1 lemon
- 6-8 kale leaves
- 1 pear
- 2 small bushels of broccoli 
- 2 handfuls of spinach
- about 1/2 thumb size of ginger
(Creates about 30 oz's, depending on produce size)

* I love the Mean Green, but wanted to switch it up a bit, and this mix is soooo delicious! 

During my reboot, a lot of people were asking questions about juicing, and it felt great to share my experience and my knowledge with them. These were people who were open to the idea of juicing, and have done their research on the benefits of juicing. There were also a lot of people who thought I was crazy and starving myself. Going on a liquid diet that consists of nothing but fresh fruits and veggies is definitely NOT starving yourself! You are still feeding your body everything that you need to function and stay healthy. Now, if all I was doing was drinking water, than that's a whole different story. I was also warned by several people to be careful about doing this type of "diet" because it will be very easy to gain all the weight back fast. I've done plenty of research of what I need to do to maintain after I finish fasting, and there is no way that I will let all the hard work and dedication go to waste. And honestly, after a reboot, your body feels so good, there's no way you're going to want to feed yourself junk that will make you sick. It's truly a lifestyle change. Going on a juice fast opens up your eyes and helps you understand the importance of how to eat and live a healthier life. Don't get me wrong, I will not deprive myself of some yummy treats here and there, but I now know how to limit myself to have a healthier portion. 

Unbeetable
- 8-10 carrots
- 1 cucumber
- 1 beet
- 2-3 apples
- 1/2" ginger root
(Creates about 30 oz's, depending on size of produce)

*Not a big fan of beet, but this mixture was actually pretty good!

I broke my fast for dinner, at Ba Chi Canteen, a fairly new vietnamese restaurant, located in uptown, New Orleans. I decided I wasn't going to jump straight in to eating any meat. I have a more sensitive
stomach than my fiancé, so I wanted to be very careful with choosing what to eat. I opted to have vegetarian dishes to introduce solid food back in to my diet. I ordered vegetarian spring rolls and a vegetarian pho. (a traditional vietnamese soup) I ate 1 1/2  of my spring rolls, and took maybe 6-7 bites of my soup, and I was totally full. It felt so weird to eat food again, I kind of missed my juice. lol. But I did get that sort of euphoric feeling that my fiancé experienced when he first ate solid food after his fast. Yeah, I guess I was a little "food drunk" too. lol. The food tasted so good, but I couldn't eat very much of it, because I got so full, so quick. It was a successful first meal! 

* Feeling great & super healthy! Dropped down 17lbs! 

*Yummy veggie pho, with kimchi & tofu!

* Veggie spring rolls with avocado, lettuce, mint, and noodles

After my 18 day reboot, I felt very accomplished! My body has transformed and I felt slimmer and healthier than I have in years. My body felt clean, and I was fully energized! I was so proud of myself for actually sticking to it, and following through. It was such an amazing & rewarding feeling! I was already planning out my second reboot! =)




Saturday, August 31, 2013

Reboot Days 11-14 - Juice Flow

*Added a new fruit to our regular breakfast recipe! Yum!!

Cantaloupe Pineapple
-8 to 10 carrots
-2 oranges
-1/2 lemon
-3 slices of pineapple
-4-5 slices of cantaloupe
(makes about 30-32 oz's, feel free to add how ever much of each fruit to your liking)

The further we got in to our reboot, the more experimental we got with our recipes! The idea was to stick to the basic as the base, and then add fruits and veggies that we think would compliment the juice. It's important to get creative, and give yourself more options in the flavors of juices you will be consuming. It helps keep things interesting and is a big way to keep juicing enjoyable!

Our main goal was to do a reboot for 12 days, until we had our rehearsal dinner tasting, but it was re-scheduled for a later date, so plans changed. My fiancé actually ended his fast on Day 10. He lost 18 lbs!! He continued to juice for breakfast and lunch, but was eating dinner. I decided to keep on going, and my goal was to do 20 days. I was feeling so good, and my body was so used to the juice, that I knew I could keep going. I no longer had any cravings for "real" solid food. My fiancé broke his fast at one of our local, tasty restaurants, and he said that food was so great, he almost felt like he was "food drunk." lol His first solid meal was a filet mignon with some delicious mash potatoes. He didn't feel sick and realized his appetite was not as big as before the fast. He did not over eat, and felt very full, really fast. He was quite surprised by how much his body has transformed. It really does work people!! I am now fully convinced that juicing really does your mind and body good!

I even have my boss juicing now, to try to help her with her migraines and to help her get extra nutrients that her body may need! She's loving it so far! Makes me feel so good  introducing juicing to others!

*Me & Boss Lady's cheers to our Mean Greens!

On Day 11, we had tickets to go see my team play at the Superdome for their first pre-season game! I was debating if I wanted to go or not. I haven't really been out and about since on my fast, and was worried about temptations that would surround me, but I couldn't miss seeing my Saints play! So I toughed it out, and brought my Mean Green with me to drink while my fiancé picked up some quick dinner. I even brought my green inside the restaurant with me! Definitely got some stares, but I didn't care! It felt good to know that I can sit in an actual restaurant while everyone is eating, and still have the will power to not eat or pick at any solid food. It was a very rewarding feeling!

*Enjoying my mean green right before the game! Who Dat! 



Days 12-14 went pretty well! I was focused and ready to keep going on with my journey! I was determined to make it to 20 days! Over the days, we went to a few social events, and one was a cookout!! I was pretty nervous about that one, but I brought my Mean Green with me, and brought a veggie & fruit dish, and did not eat one thing from the cookout! I was very proud of myself, because trust me, it was very very tempting, and everything was so delicious! Stuck to it, and stayed dedicated!

Here are a few more of my fave recipes:

Berry Twist
- 8-10 carrots
- 3 apples
- 1 lemon
- 1 orange
- 10-15 strawberries
(makes about 30+ oz's, depending on size of produce-feel free to add more or less of whatever, just make sure you have a good balance going)

* Super yummy breakfast, just enough sweetness and tartness! Great balance!

Green & Orange 
- 5-6 leaves of romaine lettuce
- 5-6 leaves of kale 
- 20 strawberries (depends on size)
- 2 gala apples
- 1/2 lemon
- 6-8 carrots (depends on size)
(Makes about 30 oz's depending on the size of produce, Adjust amount of veggies or fruit to your liking)

* You can drink this juice as a breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack! Tasty, but still very healthy!

Simple Green
-1 cucumber
-5-7 slices of honeydew
- 30-40 green grapes
(makes about 30 oz's depending of size of produce)

*So refreshing and delicious, and very easy to make!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Reboot Days 8-10 - Feeling Awesome!

*My co-worker being a great sport for my daily post, she's actually a very healthy & active person! =)

Days 8-10 was a whole lot easier! I was feeling much better, since I was finally well rested. My skin was feeling super smooth and soft, and people were telling me I was glowing. The pounds were definitely still dropping, and I was feeling healthier than I have ever felt! My energy level was high. and I found myself more focused, even with all the things I have going on right now. It felt really good to finally see some of the hard work and dedication, starting to pay off! It was a very rewarding feeling, and it gave me extra motivation!

I have also started to experiment more with my own recipes.


A small twist to our normal breakfast juice.

Strawberry, Kiwi Delight
- 8 kiwis
- small basket of strawberries
- 6-8 carrots
- 4-5 leafs of romaine lettuce
Makes about 30 ounces of juice depending on the size of produce.
You can change the amount of fruits or veggies to your liking.


*This recipe is so delicious!! Makes for a perfect snack!

Pineapple & Orange Twist
- 8-10 carrots
- 2 oranges
- 5-6 slices of pineapple
Makes about 20-30 ounces of juice depending on the size of produce.
You can change the amount of fruits or veggies to your liking.

* This recipe can be a little on the sweet side, be careful how much pineapple you use. You can always add something else to it, and it will taste just as good!





Saturday, August 10, 2013

Reboot Days 5-7 - Mentally Exhausted

* Kale has now become my new best friend!

So after a long night of juicing, for my mother on Friday, we had appointments scheduled early the next morning. A cake consultation, and one later in the afternoon for a florist consultation. I was so exhausted, but I knew this was something that had to be done because it's only 5 months until our wedding!! We woke up early, and had our morning juice and was ready to take care of business!

The cake consultation lasted about 2 hours, and was mentally draining. Don't get me wrong, I love our vendor, Flour Power Nola! Ronda was amazing and definitely helped us bring our vision to life, it was just the process of finally coming to a decision that was a little overwhelming. (And we didn't do an actual tasting of course, since we were fasting, but I have had their cakes before, and they are delicious! Tasting will have to wait a little.) We went there with an idea of what we wanted but there were so many options on what things we could do to customize our cake! And of course we had to discuss and make a decision for my fiancé's groom's cake. It was just so much information to take in, and being that I haven't ate any carbs in the last 5 days, my brain was feeling a little fried. lol.

After cake consultation we went back home to "eat" our lunch, and it was also mom's first day of juicing. She drank her morning juice before she met us, and we took a pit stop to drop my fiancé off, so he could open up the shop, then we prepared some notes to go to our next meeting with the florist.

* Cheers to our Mean Green! 

Before heading to the florist, we checked out some bridal boutiques to browse for dresses for my mom, for the wedding. Then we finally made it to Beth's Flowers! It was another 2 hours or so of consultation, but I love the whole outcome of all the arrangements that we put together! I also loved the fact that all my vendors so far, were all very well connected. I felt a sense of relief, another thing to check off my list, but yet again, my brain felt like it was in overdrive. Sue, at Beth's Flowers, also mentioned that I should book my limos asap, since there are only 4 limo services in New Orleans, and they were booking fast. She gave me a recommendation on who to use, one of her good friends, so yet again, another mission to cross of my list. 

By the end of the day, I was super tired and overwhelmed with wedding stuff, all I wanted to do was sleep. One of my best friends was waiting for me when I got home, and mentioned that she wanted to try juicing before she bought her own juicer. So of course, being the great friend that I am, I offered to help her juice the next day since we were going to do all of our juicing for the next few days as well. I thought, why not just do it all at once? I told her what ingredients to get, and told her to come back in the morning so we can get all the juicing out the way all in one day. 

*Production Day! Lots of work, but like with any diet, you must put in the work to get results! 

Let me just tell you, bad idea!! I felt great helping a friend out, but to make enough juices for three people all in one day is a whole lot of work! Remember my fiancé and I were fasting, so we were juicing breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and desserts for us for the next 3 days, and my girlfriend wanted a few juices to last her 3 days as well. It was a hot mess! We ran out of ingredients and had to make last minute shopping trips to 3 different grocery stores! I was extremely tired, but I had to push through, because it had to be done! We started juicing around 2:00 pm, and probably didn't finish until 7:00 pm. 

*My girlfriend drinking her lunch, and taking off with her juices! I should start a business! lol

TMI WARNING
I wasn't sure if I was going to share this with the world, but I thought maybe some ladies who would like to try a reboot should know. Well, on my 5th day of fasting, "my time of the month" decided to make its debut! At first, I freaked out! I was thinking, is it safe to even be on a juice fast while on the cycle? I did some research, and not much information on the subject really popped up. But if there were women who have done 30 day reboots or longer, I'm pretty sure they had to go through their cycle during those days as well. Definitely a duh moment! But I was still a little bit freaked out about how I was going to handle this. How was I going to survive being on my cycle, while "eating" just juice? The first thing that happens to me when that time of the month usually comes, is cramps, headaches, and cravings for anything full of carbs! The one thing I crave for the most is chocolate!! And to top it off, I usually get pretty hormonal and PMS usually kicks in pretty bad. I didn't know how I was going to get through this. The first day it came, I was totally feeling it. No cramps or any headaches, but I was craving everything sweet and all the junk food in sight. It was tough! But I stuck it out, and sipped on my juices! I went to my dessert juice to substitute my sweet cravings, and it did the trick! I was still so emotionally and mentally drained, but I was feeling good that that I didn't cave and eat something solid.

*Grapes, blueberries, & mint! A very refreshing juice for the summer, and soooo delicious! Another recipe  we love from Joe's 3 Day Plan, recipe below!

Purple Passion
-30 purple/black or red grapes (we used green)
-1 basket of blueberries
-1 handful of mint

By day 7, it was time to go back to work, and I was not having a very good day at all. I think all the hustle and bustle from the weekend really took a toll on me. I was so tired and drained, mentally & emotionally. It was a rough day. I just felt like crying. Life doesn't stop while you're on a juice fast, you just have to deal with it the best way you can. And planning a wedding, working full time, owning a shop, and trying to help friends and family join you on a healthy trip can be totally draining, but all I could do was get through my day and get a good night's rest. I wanted to stick to my goal. Sticking to it and not giving up was enough reason for me to know that tomorrow would be a better day!

Produce Wash Recipe

Washing your fresh fruits and veggies thoroughly is the key to make sure you avoid any pesticides or other unhealthy, unwanted, dirt that comes along with your produce. We have bought a fruit and vegetable cleanse spray from Wal-Mart, and it was pretty pricey for a small bottle. The refills were even more expensive. So I found a more cost effective way to spray down and clean your juices.

Produce Wash Recipe:
- 1 c./235ml. water
- 1 c./235 ml. white vinegar
- 1 Tbsp./15 g. baking soda
- 1/2 lemon

 Mix in a large bowl (to allow for the chemical reaction between the vinegar and baking soda) and then pour into a spray bottle. Spray fruit and rinse well. Use a scrub brush for firmer produce. 
-rebootwithjoe.com

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Reboot Days 3 & 4 - Juice Love


Days 3 and 4 was actually pretty easy! We were worried about all the horror stories about the 3rd day being the hardest day, but it wasn't bad at all for us. Again, I think the reason why it was so easy was because we didn't jump straight in to a fast, I'm a firm believer now that you should really prepare yourself right and ease in to it before jumping in to a fast, because it has definitely worked for us. I thought by now we would cave and eat something, but we were still focused and determined to meet our goal!

We were actually loving juicing! Juicing was really fun for us, it was like cooking together! We had a our own system going. We had this juicing thing down! We found a flow that worked for us! Set up, pulling out ingredients, washing, peeling, cutting, than juicing was all done in our own organized way that made the process much easier. It just felt good to be on this journey together. During our fast we didn't plan on going out very much, we just wanted to stay focus. Usually when the weekend comes around, we have dinner and drinks with friends on Fridays. Saturdays after our shop closes, we usually have something going on, maybe go out bar hopping or something. Sundays we usually spend the day relaxing or taking our pup Nacho out to the park, or go to the movies. There's always tons of things to do in New Orleans! But we wanted to avoid any temptation during our fast so we wanted to lay low, and just take it day by day. It definitely helps when your significant other is juicing with you since you will both be "eating" the same thing. I could only imagine how hard it would have been if one of us was still eating steaks and stuff, while the other was juicing. I think that would have been pretty challenging for us if that was the case.

Since we started the fast we have also been drinking our juices in plastic containers, with a sealed top on them, like the ones used to hold your water, when you are on the go. Well I ended up buying us like 3 containers each, and they were around $5.00 ea., and they were not as easy to drink from, because some of the containers we had, had little sip slots that prevented enough juice from coming out when we were drinking our meals. It was kind of annoying how long you had to tip the container in order to get some juice to come out. So I was researching other alternatives. And I found some people use mason jars. Duh, like why didn't I think of this before?! I have tons of mason jars already because I'm using a lot of them to create our wedding center pieces. And the pint size jars are 16 ounces each, so it worked out perfectly! Mason jars are glass, so it keeps the juice way colder, and it has a super sealed top, which helps prevent any oxygen from coming in! And to get a dozen of mason jars, was like $7-$8! I got most of my mason jars from Dollar General, but I hear you can find them at certain Wal-Marts as well! I highly recommend using them to store your juices!! So convenient and so easy to just quickly grab and small enough to pack in a little lunch bag. And I must say again, keeps your juices super cold, which I love!!


*Breakfast & lunch now fit perfectly in my little lunch bag to take to work!

*Leaves you tons of extra space in your fridge to store more goodies!

*So much more convenient! Seeing the colors of the juice helps you know which one to grab for what meal! And it just looks super cool, lol. (we are both artists, so we enjoyed seeing all the different colors)


*Rash update: Was still really itchy and was still flaring up once in a while. Still not sure if it had anything to do with detox or was simply a reaction to my cortisone shot. I was hoping it would go away because it was just super annoying! I continued to take benadryl every time I felt super itchy and inflamed. 

My brother and I have also been encouraging my mom to incorporate juicing in her diet, because she gets severe migraines almost every other day. It gets so bad sometimes, that she ends up not having an appetite. The only thing she can really eat is a small snack and drink coffee. A lady on Joe's "Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead" documentary, also suffered from migraines, so we thought our mom should give it a try. My mom didn't have a juicer yet, because she wanted to try to see if it was something that she would like, so we ended up spending our Friday night bringing our juicer to my parents house, and juiced my mom 3 days worth of juices. I was tired, but it felt good to know that this could possibly help my mom feel better. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Reboot Day 2 - Rash?

On the 2nd day of fast, I noticed that my bite on my back was still inflamed, and now I was getting a mild rash on my neck, inner wrists, and my lower back, all around the inflamed area. So I went back to the doctor to make sure I was okay. Well, the doctor told me it could be a reaction from the cortisone shot, because some people get reactions from the shot. My skin is already super sensitive to begin with. I was also wondering, if maybe it was because my body was detoxing and this was a reaction of the toxins trying to come out of my body. I wasn't really sure what caused the rash, but the doctor told me it would be okay to take benadryl. (Doc knew I was on a juice fast) I did some research to see if a rash can be a side effect from detox, and some people say that they have experienced rashes, but it usually goes away within a couple of days. It is not advised that you take any type medication that is not prescribed during a reboot, because it will just put toxins back in to your body, but I couldn't help it. I had to take benadryl because I had to get this rash under control. It was itching pretty bad. I also rubbed anti-itch cream on it to help soothe it. It was annoying more than anything, and I really wanted to follow through and finish this detox, so I did whatever I needed to deal with the discomfort.

Other than that day 2 actually went pretty well. Started the day off with a cup of hot water with lemon before having my morning juice. I was really loving how much energy I had from my morning juice. Even my co-workers noticed how much energy I had around the office, compared to the very tired and sleepy Dana they were used to. I was feeling great!



We also decided to try some different recipes for snacks and dessert. You should drink at least 64 ounces of juice or more a day during a reboot. If you are hungry, EAT your juice! The way I see it drink as much juice as you want until you feel full! There's really no rule that says that you can't drink too much juice. I don't think there's really a limit of how much juice you can drink a day, as long as you drink enough to keep you healthy and functioning during your fast. I wouldn't drink too much of the juices that contain more fruits than vegetables, because they can be higher in sugar, which may not be that healthy for you, and may not help you lose weight as fast, if that is your goal.

For a dessert juice, we tried a purple juice from the 3 Day Plan

Peach Pie Delight
1 sweet potato
2 ripe peaches, pitted (or pears if peaches are not in season)
1 red apple
1 handful of blueberries
dash of cinnamon


*Can we say delicious?!! It is the best juice when you are craving something sweet! Treat yo' self because you definitely need to when you are fasting, it's absolutely yummy, and still way healthier than eating an actual slice of pie!

For a snack juice we used another purple juice that still has green in it:

Red, White, Blue (& Green)
1/4 Watermelon
2 handfuls of blueberries
6-8 kale leaves

*This juice is so refreshing! Watermelon creates tons of juice so you may not need to use as much as the recipe calls for. Just depends. I personally love this recipe because it's not too sweet since the kale helps balance the taste. 

My fiancé and I were both feeling pretty good, feeling healthy and super energized, and the pounds continued to drop! We didn't do too much exercising, we just took it easy since it was still our second day. Feeling super motivated and ready for more!


Reboot Day 1 - Easy Breezy

The night before our first day of our fast, we had to load up on all our fresh fruits and veggies which meant another trip to the grocery. We had to buy a whole lot more of ingredients this time around, because well that's all we would be "eating" (yes eating!) for the next couple of days. Rebooting is definitely NOT cheap, but it's so worth it, because you know everything you are buying is going to be good for you! It's an investment to better your health! (And you have to remember we were shopping for two people) It was so odd to see our basket full of nothing but vegetables and fruits, and just seeing that already made me feel healthy!

* Our fridge loaded with fresh goodies!

That night, I also noticed my back was itching really bad, and when I looked at it, it was swollen! Something definitely bit me, and I panicked, because I am severely allergic to insect bites! If I don't treat myself with benadryl right away, I end up getting really puffy and my throat starts closing up. I've been to the emergency room plenty of times before because of my horrible reactions. I saw the doctor on our first day of fast, and he told me something had bit me but did not know what. So in order to get the inflammation to go down, he gave me a cortisone shot.

First day for us was went pretty well. We had a normal Orange drink for breakfast with carrots, apple and lemon. For lunch and dinner we stuck with the Mean Green. It is very important to stick to a green juice for your important meals like lunch and breakfast, because it's mostly vegetables and you get a lot of protein from it. I feel that it keeps you feeling full, so I actually like it for my main meal. Drank plenty of water throughout the day, and flushed out lots of it as well! =) In between lunch and dinner, we actually snacked on a handful of nuts. I had raw almonds, and my fiancé had unsalted cashews. The rule is to not snack on anything at all, but I don't think a few nuts will really hurt, and my brother did this during his fast. If it makes it easier for you to not go grab a bag of chips and stick to your fast, than why not? You don't have to be super religious about it. Before bed, we drank a nice hot herbal tea.


I think it really helped that we didn't jump straight in to a fast, because our bodies were already used to the juices, and our hunger was more controllable since we have been eating less "actual food" every day before our reboot. We didn't experience any weakness or headaches or any nasty side effects that can sometimes happen to people when starting a juice fast. When researching about juice fasting, most people say the first day is always the easiest. They also say the second day is not as bad but most people experience the third day as the hardest day to get through because your body is detoxing, and all the toxins are coming out of you, so it can cause you to almost feel ill and very weak. We were happy to get through our first day and we were ready for more! Seeing the pounds come off already, added extra motivation for us to keep going!

Monday, August 5, 2013

The First Few Days...

It was time to prepare our fresh veggies and fruits, and juice them! The part of the process that takes the longest is to set aside the amount of ingredients you need and wash them all properly, to make sure they are as clean as you can get them. This was extra work for us since we were preparing for two. You can throw whole carrots, apples, oranges, and cucumbers in our juicer, so we didn't have to do too much chopping, but we did peel our lemons and oranges. 

The easiest and most fun part was to actually use the juicer. When I first threw in an ingredient, I was actually pretty scared, our juicer is pretty powerful, and the noise was loud, so I kind of had to take a step back and make sure nothing was going to pop out in to my eye or something. lol  But once we got used to it, it was actually a lot of fun! 

video
*Please excuse the gloves, I wouldn't recommend using gloves, I just did it for this one time because I just got my nails done and those dang beets were staining my nails. But then I realized that the gloves probably had chemicals or something on them and should not be used to handle fresh fruits and veggies. Tossed that idea out right away. =)

It was our first day, and we had the apple, carrot, and lemon juice for breakfast. Right away, I felt a burst of energy. I couldn't believe how much energy I had! I'm not a morning person at all, and it usually takes a couple cups of coffee for me to start waking up. Even after that, I still don't have enough energy. The juice tasted great, and I was loving the feeling it gave me. I called my fiancé and asked him how his breakfast was, and he was feeling super energized as well. We were starting to feel great already! Then a few hours passed, and my stomach started to growl, it was time for the Mean Green. The taste of the green juice is definitely an acquired taste, some people may not like it at first. But it definitely was not as bad as we thought it would be. Not anything gross where you need to hold your nose and down it. The kale gives it a little bit of a bitter taste, and it definitely tastes very "greeny", if that makes any sense. It didn't really bother me because I love veggies and I'm not very picky when it comes to food or drinks. My fiancé had a hard time at first. He hardly eats veggies, almost never really, and he chugged it for the first time, but is actually really liking it now. (he's a burger, french fries, pizza, and fried chicken kind of guy) By the time I got off of work, I was pretty hungry. I wasn't feeling weak or anything but I did have a headache. We didn't snack on anything, and just waited for dinner. We drank lots of water until then.  First day was a breeze!

On our second day, we had the Sunrise recipe which consisted of beets, carrots and oranges, for breakfast. This one gave us as much energy as the first, but the beets just made the juice taste too earthy. It was a little over powering. Lunch was easy, and the taste of the Mean Green started tasting even better! I did get a little weak by the time I got off of work, and so did my fiancé. But we pushed through and stuck to our plan. We also noticed that we had to go to the bathroom a lot, I mean a lot! lol You're drinking so much liquid throughout the day so it's gotta come out, and you end up peeing like every 10 minutes or so. 

*Sunrise: carrots, oranges, & beet

The next couple of days juicing became easier and easier, I looked forward to my morning juices to give me that extra pep I needed for the morning. And my Mean Green was starting to taste really delicious, like a nice healthy salad, but way more filling. 

We reached our 6th day of juicing breakfast and lunch, and our goal was to do it for a whole week, but we both felt like we were ready to go ahead and start our reboot. We felt great, healthy, energized and we both were losing weight, with barely any excercise. I lost 3 lbs and he lost 9 lbs!  (I know boys suck!! Men lose weight so much faster than women!) So we were ready to take on a Reboot challenge! We had to set a goal, and we decided we were going to fast for 12 days. We had a dinner rehearsal tasting on August 10, so we wanted to break fast then. So the challenge begins...

Let the juicing begin!

My fiancé and I are actually on our 6th day of our juice fast/reboot! I was inspired to start a blog about my experience so far, because I was getting so many people asking me questions about what this whole juice fast thing was all about. Well, I was already keeping my own personal journal about it, might as well document everything online, where I can share my journey with everyone. Hopefully it can inspire you as others have inspired me.

So, we first introduced juicing in to our diet on July 24, 2013, 12 days ago. Our juicer finally arrived and I couldn't wait to start juicing! First thing was first, read our juicer manual of course, since we never owned a juicer before and had no idea how this thing works. Well the instructions were pretty simple, and the set up was a breeze. The juicer that we have is awesome! It seemed pretty easy to clean, has a pulp catcher, and has a wide chute, big enough to toss a whole apple in. I was feeling pretty confident that this would be easy!

Then it was time to figure out what recipes we wanted to try first. We have already decided that we did not want to jump straight in to a fast, we wanted to juice for breakfast and lunch, and try to eat a healthy  meal for dinner. The problem is there were so many juice recipes out there, so I was a little overwhelmed with what to start off with. I went back to the 3-Day Plan Guide found on Joe's website.

This guide definitely helps you figure out where to start.


So we picked 2 different types of orange recipes for breakfast and decided to stick with one green recipe for lunch.

For our orange recipes we chose:

Carrot Apple Lemon
4 carrots
2 apples
1 lemon
(Makes about 12 oz or more)


*This recipe taste delicious! It gives you lots of energy to get your morning started!

Sunrise
4 carrots
2 oranges
1 beet
(Makes about 12 oz or more)

* This recipe also provides you with tons of energy, but we were not too fond of the beets. Even peeling the beets still leaves a pretty strong earthy taste. We still use this recipe, but we just take out the beets and add lemon. 

For our green recipe we decided to stick to Joe's Mean Green!

Joe's Mean Green
6 kale leaves (Australian Tuscan cabbage)
1 cucumber
2 celery stalks
1 green apple
1/2 lemon
Small piece of ginger root (1"/2.5cm)
(Makes about 12 oz or more )

* This recipe is one of my favorites. We use this one for all of our lunch and dinners now, because it really does fill you up, and makes you feel like you are eating an actual healthy meal! We have taken out the celery stalks though, the juice from the celery was just too overpowering. I love eating celery, but juicing it was just too strong, and takes over all the other flavors in the recipe, in my opinion.

So it was time to make our shopping list and go to the grocery. The recipes above make just about enough for one juice each, so for every recipe we had to double the ingredients since we were juicing for two. The two ingredients that were very hard for us to find was kale and beets. We had to go to 3 different stores, before finally giving in and going go to Whole Foods. Don't get me wrong, Whole Foods is great for people who can afford it, but if we were going to juice, we had to stick to a budget that we could maintain, through out this process. It could get pretty pricey if we were doing all of our shopping at  Whole Foods. I've never even heard of kale before, and neither has my fiancé, so we didn't even really know what it looked like. This is the main ingredient for our green recipe, so we knew we needed bunches of them. They were about $3.99 for a bunch at Whole Foods, so you can see how it can get pretty pricey if we were going to juice every day. 

Well, we decided we were going to supplement breakfast and lunch with juice and eat a normal and healthy dinner for a week, before fasting. It was definitely a mission to get all the ingredients we needed, because we weren't really sure yet on how much we needed to last us a few days. We were up for the challenge, and we were ready!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Juicing FAQ's

When first learning about juicing, I had so many questions. I'm sure you do too. Here are a some important and helpful FAQ's that have helped me understand the process more.

What do I need to start juicing?
- A juicer that can actually juice vegetables and fruits properly to get the right amount of nutrients
- Fresh veggies & fruit (doesn't have to be organic if you are on a budget like I am, just make sure you wash your produce thoroughly, to avoid pesticides, and to keep everything fresh)
- Do your research, learn as much as you can about the process and see if it's fit for you
- Consult your doctor if you plan on fasting
- Set a goal, and plan out how you will reach that goal
- Willpower and motivation! 

How many juices should I drink a day?
It is recommended that you drink at least 16-20 ounces of juice to substitute a meal. If you are fasting it is best to try to drink at least 4-6 juices, at least 64 ounces of juice a day. 

How often should I drink juice?
Well it depends on what you are trying to do. If you are just planning on substituting some meals, then you would drink it at the time you would usually eat that meal you are substituting. If you are fasting, then you can drink a juice for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack or dessert when you feel hungry. If you feel your stomach growling, then you know it's time for a juice!

Can I drink water while juicing?
Absolutely!! The more water you drink, the better!! Drinking lots of water while juicing will help keep your body hydrated, and will also help you flush all the toxins you are trying to get rid of. It is important to drink lots of water, to avoid nausea, headaches, and feeling weak. Your body will crave water!

How many fruits and veggies do I use to make one juice?
The rule to follow is that you should try to always keep it 80% vegetable and 20% fruit.

Can I drink coffee while on a juice fast?
The answer is NO! Coffee contains lots of toxins because of the caffeine. If you are addicted to coffee or anything with caffeine, you should definitely try to ween yourself off of it before you start your fast. You could experience some serious headaches if you jump right in to it and do it cold turkey.

Can I fast if I am on prescribed medication?
Please consult with your doctor first to make sure your medication will not affect your fast.

Can I exercise during a fast?
Yes, you can. You have to increase the intensity of whatever work out you choose to do. Walking is plenty enough of exercise while fasting. A few days in to your fast, you will have so much energy that you could probably pick up the pace a little bit more, like maybe do 20 minutes or so of zumba.

Can you drink alcohol  or smoke?
NO you cannot drink alcohol or smoke during a fast, because by doing so, you will be putting toxins back in your body.

Will I get enough protein from juicing?
There is actually a good amount of natural protein in many vegetables and fruits. You can find a good amount of protein in vegetables such as kale, spinach, romaine lettuce, broccoli, peas, and carrots. 

Can I make my juices ahead of time?
Yes, you can. The nutrients are the most potent within 48 hours. So you can make juices for 2 days worth. (72 hours is maximum time suggested)

What do I store my juice in?
You can store your juice in any airtight container to prevent any oxygen from getting in your juice.  Exposure to oxygen can degrade and break down all the nutrients in your juice. It's also recommended to use glass, but plastics will work too. We found that using mason jars works the best! It's convenient, it seals your juices tight, and keeps your juices super cold!

Can you use a blender on a juice fast?
NO! You need to use a juicer because the juicer will seperate the fibers from the juices and a blender will not. It's important to eliminate the fibers and pulp from your diet. Your digestive system needs to absorb the nutrients without having to use energy to digest all those fibers.

Is it okay to chew gum?
Yes, but look for gum without any artificial sweetners and one that is natural.

Do I juice peels and stems?
Stems actually produce more fluid, so it is okay to juice those. As far as the peels, that's up to your preference. The peels do contain important nutrients but can cause the juice to taste a little bitter. 

What if I get a headache?
Drink lots of water and make sure to stay hydrated!

I am not an expert or anything, I'm just sharing information from my personal experience, and what I learned from researching.

Any more questions, feel free to check out: REBOOTING FAQ'S

Preparation

So while waiting for our juicer to come in, I did a lot of research on juicing and rebooting. Most of my research started on Joe's website, rebootwithjoe.com. All the information you need to know is on the site, as far as how to get started, what a reboot is, the benefits of juicing, and tons of recipes.

I started looking through the different PLANS on the website, to find a guide that can help start our juicing journey, and we decided to start with the basic recipes on the 3 Day Quick Start .

I also searched all over the web for other sources of information and read about other people's experiences. I even researched youtube to see what would pop up, and found an interesting channel where this girl kept a video blog about her 10 day fast. You can check out Toya's journey through her youtube channel here: Toya's 10 Day Fast. It was interesting to see how she documented every day of her fast, on how she felt, what she was doing to keep her mind off of food, and what exercises she was doing during her fast. It was also very inspiring to see her results. Seeing Toya's videos and learning about what she did to prepare herself for her juice fast gave me a better understanding of how to prepare myself for my own fast. She did not jump straight in to a juice fast/detox. She actually incorporated juicing in her diet first, by substituting a few meals for like 2 weeks, while still eating normal meals.

You can find more success stories on Joe's site here: Success Stories

The idea of going on a juice fast was scary to me, I didn't know how my body would react, so I was inspired to introduce it in our diet first before actually doing a fast. My fiancé  and I discussed it, and we talked about what time of the day we actually felt the most hungry. We decided it was during the evening time. So we had a plan, we were going to slowly introduce juicing in our diet by juicing only breakfast and lunch for a week, and then try doing a reboot.

Feeling good, about now having a plan on how to start, I decided I also wanted to keep a journal to document everything during our journey. The first thing I did was make a list of all the reasons why I wanted to try juicing and what I wanted to accomplish from it. I recommend everyone should do this before juicing or before going on any type of a challenging diet. I know I can always go back to that list if I start to doubt my willpower to continue. It's a great way to motivate yourself.

People also recommend that before going on a juice fast, you should try to start changing your diet by eating healthier and cutting out all the junk. If you take prescription drugs, you should also consult your doctor first to make sure it is okay to do a juice fast. I got the okay from my doctor and was now ready for the challenge!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

So what exactly is "JUICING"?

Juicing is the process of using a juicer of your choice, to create fresh juices using only fresh fruit and vegetables. You can find a juicer in almost any of your local stores like Walmart, Target, Sam's, Bed Bath & Beyond, etc., or even online. We decided on the trying out one of the juicers that Joe recommends on his website, the Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus 850-Watt Juice Extractor.



We are so happy that we chose this particular juicer because not only is it so easy to clean and maintain, but it also didn't cost an arm and a leg. It's a decent price for a great product that works amazing!

You can find a list of recommended juicers on Joe's Website.

Juicing is a great way to consume a healthy amount of nutrients that your body lacks. "By juicing you can help regain or sustain your vitality, introduce more healthy habits, and lose weight."-rebootwithjoe.com Juicing is also known to help improve health issues like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, migraines, etc. Juicing helps you get a faster, more efficient way of absorbing nutrients that can boost up your immune system.

"How does it work? Juicing removes the insoluble fiber from vegetables and fruits. While fiber is an established, important part of an overall healthy diet, removing the insoluble fiber allows for increased absorption of specific health promoting phytonutrients including enzymes, while the soluble fiber persists into the juice.  By removing the fibers and consuming fruits and vegetables in liquid form, we are providing a nutrient delivery system to our bodies that allows individuals who would otherwise have difficulty consuming whole vegetables, the opportunity to reap the numerous benefits vegetables have to offer." - rebootwithjoe.com

Most people do not include the right amount of healthy nutrients in their diet. I know that we definitely did not. It's not because we couldn't do it, it's because we didn't always care to pay attention to what we were putting in our mouth. Don't get me wrong, we don't eat McDonald's every day or anything like that, but we definitely were not eating salads, fresh fruits and vegetables enough. Living in New Orleans makes it very hard to turn down all the great food that surrounds this beautiful and cultured city. New Orleans has an abundance of unique, and delicious restaurants that consists of such a great variety of different types of food. Temptation is always around us. Going out eating, drinking, and partying is a big part of the lifestyle we have, living here. That's just how life is in this city, and I love it! But it was time for change... time to take control and take action to better our health!

Juicing?

My journey to discovering juicing began at one of our family gatherings, when my brother from Houston, was in town. He mentioned that he would like to try and start "juicing". He explained to me that it was a healthy way to start cleansing your body of all the nasty toxins that we all put in our bodies on a daily basis. He also explained that by introducing "juicing" in to your diet, you would be able to consume a lot more healthy nutrients that your body probably lacks. A juice fast can help you start off fresh and get rid of all the toxic food and junk that you have been consuming. He said that "juicing" was aa great and healthy way to lose weight. And BAM, that's when I really started paying attention. I'm getting married in January 2014, and have been trying to lose some excess weight so I can look my best on my wedding day. I've tried so many diets, weight watchers, 3 day military diet, etc... and well yeah they worked but it was very hard to maintain if you don't stick to it. So at this point I was curious and wanted to do more research on what "juicing" was all about.

I've heard people talk about juice fast detoxes, but never really bought in to all the hype because I figured it was just another popular fad diet going around. There's so many different ones out there and a new one pops up almost every day. So, why would "juicing" be any different?

 Well a few months passed since my brother and I first discussed "juicing", and finally he decided to try it. I was still on the fence about it, but totally supported him on his 10 day juice fast journey. He updated my family and I every day about how he was doing, how great he felt, how energized he felt, and how much weight he was losing. He said that he felt the healthiest he's felt in a while. So now I was determined to try it, and so was my fiancé, which was great because I knew I wasn't going in to this on my own. My brother recommended that we watch "Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead", a Joe Cross Film, on Netflix. A documentary all about "juicing".




So my fiancé and I watched it and it was one of the most inspiring documentaries we have ever seen!  We were still pretty apprehensive about "jucing" before watching the documentary. Our first thoughts were, there is no way drinking juice can really fill you up like a normal meal could.  It seemed so impossible and extreme. I mean how can this be healthy, just drinking juice as a meal? And already, we were doubting our willpower. I wasn't so sure we could actually do this, but after watching the documentary, we were totally inspired by Joe's story, and all the other people's stories that were featured in the documentary. We knew we hadto at least try it out. 
If they can do it, why can't we? 

Our main goal when we first heard about juicing, was just to really lose weight, but after seeing this documentary, it really shows how beneficial juicing can be for your health overall. And that definitely gave us the extra push to really want to do it. We had one more vacation coming up, so our goal was to start juicing once we were done splurging, one last time.