I woke up on day three with three immediate thoughts:
1) Jason had already left for a business trip and would be away until the next day, oh dear God.
2) If I even SUSPECTED that I was taking my mood/hunger/whatever out on my children again, I would stop that very instant. That. Very. Instant.
3) Hot christ on a ham sandwich, I feel hungover.
I don't know if it was belated caffeine withdrawal or what, but I had a terrible headache. (And it only NOW just occurred to me that I didn't even consider taking anything for it. I don't know why, as I'm usually hitting the Advil or Excedrin at the first twinge of head-discomfort. More evidence of juice-related Stockholm Syndrome, maybe?)
The boys would be with a babysitter all morning, so I decided I could safely keep going before switching to Bitch-Mood High-Alert Mode. Despite the headache, I actually really WANTED to finish the cleanse and not quit — especially once I got on the scale and realized I was down over three pounds. (I started at 13 pounds above my goal weight, 18 above the "ideal" [bleeeeaaarrrrgh nevergoingtohappen] weight for my height/frame. Thanks third pregnancy and also pâte à choux!) After spending most of the summer losing and gaining the same two or three pounds, this wasn't anything crazy spectacular, but it at least felt like a nice push in the correct downward direction.
And for the first time I realized I was no longer fantasizing about going on a day-long crazy food-binge on Thursday.
On Monday, I was planning a post-cleanse celebration along these lines:
But now...not so much. I didn't want to immediately gain that weight back OR go back to my old eating habits. I never experienced any of the endorphin highs or heightened sense of buzzing mental clarity shit the Hardcore Juice People like to promise (sorry, Hardcore Juice People), but I did gain a practical appreciation for:
1) How much useless, extra snacking I do throughout the day (iz food diary timez!),
2) How few calories I really needed to maintain my (low) level of physical activity,
3) Yeah, I need to stop looking at carbs/dairy/meat as the only foods that are "satisfying," and
4) Sorry, wine. I love you, but I will never get this weight off with you hanging around as often as you do.
Anyway, I know this is all terribly boring (AND SO HELLA OBVIOUS), but as someone who has been such a vocal tub-thumper for organic homemade baby food and so anti-HFCS/artificial dyes/colors and all that, I feel like I owe it to you guys to admit that I still have a long way to go when it comes to what I cram down my own feedhole sometimes.
(I still totes bought that song on iTunes though. Imma add it to my running playlist!)
Anyway, compared to day one and day two, day three was almost criminally easy. At 3 pm, I helped myself to a single spoonful of peanut butter to ward off Teh Crazies, and chugged the coconut water instead of sipping it. At 4 pm, I drank the beet shot and made a cup of the ginger "tea." At 5 pm, right before I needed to make dinner for the kids (since Jason was away and couldn't save me from having to be in the kitchen with All Of The Delicious Solid Food Things), I started on the second-to-last vegetable juice.
And mostly, I simply refused to let myself be a jerk. Huh.
I made pasta with turkey meatballs for the kids, gave everybody a chocolate chip cookie for dessert, then got them cleaned and jammied and brushed up in time to watch the new Lego Ninjago episode at 8 pm.
I drank the very last almond milk while they watched it. It was pretty anticlimactic, since there was no one around to high five or congratulate me.
I mean, besides Baby Ike. But I think he was mostly hoping the bottle was full of more cookies.
After that (and a phone call from Daddy), we all went to bed. The end.
I lost five pounds while on the cleanse, which put me back in a range on the scale I have not been able to crack since Ike was born, no matter what I did. As of this morning's (Friday's) weigh-in, I'm down a completely unbelievable eight.
I've eased back into "real" food, while trying to establish better habits (fruits! vegetables! no white sugar or endless snacking on three-pounds-o-cheese!) and also re-re-re-started a cardio kickboxing routine. Yesterday, I even briefly considered driving back to the juice bar for a couple more bottles (since I know I can coast until 3 pm, at which point I'd be free to eat whatever I wanted), but eh, didn't really have time. Plus: COFFEE IS SO DELICIOUS I MISSED YOU.
(I also took the boys to Chipotle for dinner, but went as healthy as possible for myself, and you know what? I didn't die and I wasn't miserable. THAT'S HOW GRATEFUL I AM TO SIMPLY HAVE FOOD TO CHEW. YAY SALAD.)
No, I have no plans to buy a juicer or do regularly monthly cleanses, since I'm not really sold on them as anything other than an extreme (and expensive) crash diet, albeit one that involves a lot of really good-for-you ingredients. And as someone gently — and rightly — pointed out in the comments on Day One, I do have a history of disordered eating (though it's all well over a decade ago at this point).
Still, though, I'm very aware that I still need to be careful, even if I do legitimately have weight I need to lose. I don't want my children to ever hear or see me obsessing over weight and making food an issue...plus there's the fact that with Mom only drinking Weird Juices, we went three days without a real sit-down family dinner, and I mostly defaulted to easy, convenience foods for them.
Those caveats aside, I'm glad I tried it. I'm glad I stuck with it. It really did force me to own up to some very bad habits and think more about the kinds of food that make my body happy, not just mah feeeeelings. (Which almost always want carbs, sugar and cheese, incidentally.) I may do a less extreme version (like a juice-until-dinner plan) at some point, and I'll definitely stop in at the juice bar when I'm in the neighborhood for some of my favorites instead of hitting the Starbucks.
And now I'll also definitely stop talking about it, and we can all get back to our regularly-scheduled blog programming of...well, probably the same sort of boring shit, only with more baby pictures.