Hi guys, its Allison from Team LC. The first time I heard about juicing was about four years ago. I had read about this age-old diet approach in several health books, including Fit for Life, Skinny Bitch, and Crazy Sexy Diet, to name a few—and it sounded almost too good to be true. Drinking freshly squeezed fruit and veggie juices will detoxify your body, give your skin a glow and boost your immune system? “No way,” I thought to myself. But when I started hearing about juice bars popping up all over the Southern California coast, I was tempted by the accessibility and popularity of this rumored miracle cleanse.
I decided to take my first dive into the world of juicing by attempting a 3-day pressed juice cleanse from my favorite neighborhood juice bar. There were ups and downs, moments of euphoria and moments of major irritability. Throughout the cleansing process, I documented what I was feeling and going through just so I could share my experience with all of you lovely LC readers. Without further ado, here is my 3-day detox diary…
- I wanted to make sure my body didn’t go into extreme shock when I started to feed it only 6 bottled juices a day, so I did my homework before starting the cleanse. I read that it is best to eat a mostly vegan diet for three days before the cleanse, as well as the three days afterwards. So…
- I stocked up on fruits and veggies, vegetable soup, lentils and brown rice, and even picked up some green juices to get my palette accustomed to the taste. I weaned myself off of my morning coffee and opted for green tea instead.
- I also made sure to get 8 hours of sleep the night before I started my cleanse so I wouldn’t feel tired or groggy. That way, my coffee cravings wouldn’t creep up on me on the very first day.
- I started my day by waking up at 7am and walking to the juice bar down the street to pick up my 6 juices and 2 flavored waters. Afraid of feeling exhausted during the day, I didn’t want to workout while cleansing. Since I usually head to the gym in the early morning before work, I decided that taking a brisk walk was a nice cardio substitute.
- My first juice was a delicious blend of green veggies, apples, and lemon. This gave me tons of energy and I didn’t even miss my cup of coffee.
- By about 3pm, my energy levels were starting to crash a bit and I felt like I needed something with protein. Luckily, my fourth juice was a mix of figs, vanilla bean, and almonds. The protein from this almond milk was filling and it gave me the boost that I needed to get through the rest of the day.
- By about 5pm, I felt pretty darn good. My eyesight was clearer and I felt really proud of myself for not succumbing to the vegan cupcakes one of my fellow LC bloggers brought into the office (they were red velvet!).
- I kept busy at night to stave off any sweet or salty cravings. After doing laundry, a little late-night blogging, and reading for a bit, it was already time for bed. I made sure to finish my last juice 2 hours before I settled in for bed so that I would sleep through the night with no disturbances. I gave myself a mental pat on the back and drifted off into a very deep sleep…
- On day 2, I woke up before my alarm even went off feeling so refreshed and rejuvenated. I walked to pick up my day 2 juices, and instead of craving coffee or breakfast, I was excited to start my day with the green juice.
- I figured out how to space out my juices perfectly. I learned from day 1 that I should drink one juice every 2 hours in order to have my last one finished 2 hours before I went to sleep. I enjoyed the taste of the fruits and veggies even more on the second day. I also noticed that my taste buds were more in-tune to the flavors that popped out in the different juices.
- By about 2pm, I started to crave solid food. I was working on a project on Pinterest and in the future, I would NOT recommend going on any food blogs (or Pinterest) when you are cleansing. It was torture! I saw photos of blackberry crisps, margherita pizzas, and butternut squash ravioli. The magic feelings I had been experiencing from the cleanse suddenly disappeared and I realized I was starving. But was it enough to make me break my fast…? I grabbed my root veggie juice and by the time I finished it, my cravings had passed and I did my best to focus on anything but food.
- When 5pm rolled around, I felt hungry again. I was noticing food all around me—restaurant advertisements, food photos on billboards on my drive home, I even felt a pang of jealousy when I saw people walking into my neighborhood Whole Foods. But I had come too far…I was almost done! I made sure to get to bed early in hopes that sleep would cure my solid food cravings.
- I woke up on day 3 feeling rested and unaware of the hunger pangs I experienced the night before. My skin was glowing, my eyes were sparkling, and I felt light and lean. I was excited about having my green juice for breakfast and I couldn’t believe I was already on my last day of the cleanse…24 hours to go!
- The day went by quickly and I felt so good that I almost extended my cleanse for another 2 days. My energy was good and my body had learned how to regulate energy levels while juicing.
- That evening, I had no late-night cravings and I felt satisfied by my evening juices. In fact, I decided that I would walk to the juice bar for a green juice the next morning since I had come to love my routine so much.
- I felt so good after I completed my cleanse, and I even continued to drink juices in the morning for a few days afterwards. I stuck to a vegan diet for the 3 days after finishing the cleanse and eventually went back to my regular, healthy diet. But I definitely felt cleaner and gained a sense of accomplishment.
Pros & Cons:
Now that you’ve read my detox diary, here are some of the good and bad things I learned from my cleanse.
- Cleanses are a bit pricey. If you are trying to pinch your pennies one month, it might not be the time to splurge on a cleanse, which can range anywhere from $45 per day to $75 per day. Instead, look into buying your produce from local farmer’s markets and juicing yourself! Check out this kale smoothie recipe to get you started…
- Bottled juice cleanses like the one I tried have a ton of sugar in them, according to Everyday Health,. Even though fresh fruit juice is natural, it will still send your energy levels on an insulin rollercoaster. This is why I crashed in the late afternoon! Having a protein drink like my almond milk will help regulate your blood sugar, but it is still not healthy to have this much sugar.
- Working out is difficult. I couldn’t get my cardio fix because I didn’t have enough energy to do my regular workouts. If you remember my post about how to fuel your workout, you might remember that I love running, hot yoga and weight training. I also can’t stand missing a workout, so I felt a little rusty getting back into the swing of things after the cleanse.
- Cleansing is not a solution for long-term weight loss. If you are looking to shed a few pounds permanently, then a juice cleanse is not the answer. Drinking juice all day might help you to loose some water weight, according to The Huffington Post, but you might gain those pounds back post-cleanse when your body starts retaining calories from solid food again. Instead, give one of Lauren’s fitness + meal plans a try. These are my favorite: Get Fit Plan and 7 Days to Skinny Jeans Plan.
- I have never felt so hydrated! When I wasn’t drinking one of my juices, I was drinking a ton of water. I made a goal to finish a 1.5 liter bottle of water each day in order to feel full and flush out any extra toxins. This probably has a lot to do with the glow I saw in my skin on the third day.
- Cleansing gives your body a rest from digestion, according to Livestrong. Our bodies are used to breaking down and digesting food all day, every day, for years and years. So once in a while, it’s nice to give your body a break by only consuming nutrient-rich fluids. Especially if you are a junk food junkie, a cleanse will help reset your system and flush out tons of toxins. (Just make sure to eat mostly vegan in the days leading up to your cleanse or else you might be in for a pretty harsh change.)
- Because most bottled, pressed juice cleanses use fruit juice along with vegetable juice, I found that I wanted nothing to do with sweets when I finished day 3 of my cleanse. My sugar cravings were gone!
- One of the biggest benefits I found from completing my cleanse was that it motivated me to stay on a healthy path for weeks afterward. Mentally, I was so rejuvenated by the 3 days I spent cleansing that the last thing I wanted to do was throw it all away. I continued to replace my morning coffee with green juices and green tea (sometimes even an apple), and I noticed major negative side effects whenever I ate something unhealthy, like pizza or cookies (oops!).
Overall, my juice cleanse was a positive experience for me and I plan on trying one again sometime soon. I think that cleansing for 3 days is plenty of time—I would not suggest doing a longer cleanse because, according to Women’s Health, your body goes into starvation mode after about 4 days. The next time I cleanse, I plan on going to a gentle yoga class or spending a few minutes in a steam room to sweat out additional toxins. But enough about me! Let’s hear what you have to say…
Have you ever tried a juice cleanse? If you have, what was your experience? If not, is it something you would be willing to try?
Leave your stories, reviews, and experiences below. I’d love to see what you guys have to say about “getting juiced!”
P.S. If you’re ready to start juicing, I suggest trying one of the 3-day cleanses from Kreation Juice. All of the juices are delicious and energizing! It’s my personal favorite. Kaeng Raeng also makes a great detox cleanse. Read more about it by clicking here.