With one week down and two weeks to go, I know for certain that I can finish what I started. If you haven’t already read about it, I’m doing the Standard Process 21 day cleanse. During the cleanse, one is not permitted caffeine, sugar, or alcohol (my three favorite things). For the entire 21 days one consumes mostly fruits and vegetables, some lentils, brown rice, wild rice, and an unimaginable quantity of supplements (some of which are mixed into smoothies). Remind me again why I’m doing this?
I had some interesting takeaways from week one.
- Planning: I know this is probably obvious but as I said before, I am lazy. I certainly had all of the materials I needed to get through the first few days, I had a plan in my mind but come crunch time, I wasn’t ready at all. I was fortunate that Monday was a holiday and I didn’t need to rouse a spring break-afied 5-year-old out of bed. With that being said – I still had to pack my lunch, make my first official “smoothie” and make it to work on time.
- Check Your Teeth: On Day 1 I made a delicious strawberry, blueberry, and pineapple smoothie. I made a double-batch so I could drink half in the morning and the other half during the workday. I drank a good portion of the smoothie on my way to work and walked into the office smiling and greeting everyone post long-weekend. Around 10:00 I headed to the ladies room and on my way out gave myself a quick smile in the mirror (I do it every time - call it self-affirmation, strange, or OCD). To my horror, I looked like a pirate ridden with scurvy. The skin from the blueberries had taken up the vast majority of real estate between each of my teeth.
- Check Your Calendar: Seriously – if you are like me and do not do well in social situations without a cocktail in-hand (is that another topic?), make sure you don’t have any major events on the horizon. Also, make sure that you haven’t committed to making 300 cake/cookie pops for a fundraiser. Both of which happened to me this weekend. I volunteered to make 300 cake/cookie pops for my good friends at The North Canton Chamber of Commerce’s, Mad Men event. If you were there, you’ll have to let me know how they turned out because I proudly did not taste a single one. Also, if I seemed a little anti-social, you can see the beginning of this section (lack of social skills sans cocktail).
There have been a few ups and downs and small print items that I wasn’t aware of. In the first few days, aside from the caffeine withdrawal, random injuries from the past have a tendency to flare up or become sore. I experienced some shoulder pain from an old sports injury (hahahaha – I never played sports) and some muscle soreness in my hamstrings, which have been a trouble-spot for me post-kids (good to be married to a massage therapist on those days). This is a normal symptom and only lasted a day or so. There is also some hormone regulation that happens during the process. This might explain why I cried during T-Ball on Saturday and again on Sunday during a nothing-but-normal conversation with my sister-in-law. It was actually the first T-Ball practice and I fear that I’ve already been labeled!
Another thing I have to mention is the pills. The first 10 days, you take 30 pills a day. And they are big capsules, not little candy-coated advil. The first few days I gagged them down one at a time. Now I'm tossing them back two-at-a time like a pro. My mother-in-law was kind enough to loan me one of those weekly pill counters. It has four seperated sections for each day. I'm able to pre-count (yep -I pre-counted on day three) the pills for the week which makes for a much faster morning routine!
SO how am I feeling after one week? I actually feel really good. I don’t miss coffee at all. I’m perfectly okay drinking tea and water during the day. I feel like I have more energy after work and after the kids go to bed. As far as my weight goes, I did lose about 4 pounds but I’m going to attribute that to the immediate diet change AND the fact that I REALLY did a good job stocking up on junk prior to starting (aka – almost an entire box of cheeze-its).
One thing I do miss at times is what feels like a good warm dinner. I’ve been skimming through the booklet as well as through some additional literature and websites and I came up with this little gem on Friday. It gave me just what I needed in the way of comfort food.
Roasted Grape Tomatoes and Asparagus over Spaghetti Squash
1 Medium Spaghetti Squash
2 Garlic Cloves
1 small red onion (I used half of a medium)
Salt (I used Cypress Sea Salt because it is recommended on the cleanse)
Cut Squash in half (vertically) and remove seeds. If you have an oil mister, spritz the inside of the squash with a little Olive Oil. If not – put a little in the bottom of the 9x13 Pyrex and spread it around. Place the squash FACE DOWN in the pan. Roast on 375 for 20-30 minutes.
Mince your garlic and dice your onion and sauté in a little bit of olive oil.
In the mean time – chop the bottom stem off of the asparagus and discard. Chop the remaining spears into thirds. Throw them into a bowl with about 1 cup of grape tomatoes, toss them (or spritz them) with a bit of olive oil (you don’t need a lot) and some salt. Throw them on to a cookie sheet and roast them in your 375 oven for about 5-7 minutes.
Once the squash is out of the oven (and cool enough to touch) – using a fork, lightly scrape the insides into a bowl. The consistency of the squash should look like strands of angel hair as it comes out.
Once the roasted veggies are done (to your desired tenderness) dump them into the pan with your sautéed garlic and onion and mix them up.
Plate up some of your spaghetti squash and top it with your asparagus/tomato mixture.
This recipe really hit the spot when I was in the mood for some much-needed comfort food. Would it have been better with some crumbled goat cheese on top? You betcha! But as it stands, I’ll take what I can get.