Saturday, 8 November 2014

I would like to state first off, before I begin my diatribe, that The Raw Juicery is a great local juice cleanse company here in LA.  I only have positive things to say about their products – the juice was great, the delivery friendly, and with a Gilt City deal, more affordable than any other cleanse I had been looking at.  So if you’re in LA and you like juice cleansing, I totally recommend them. 

I, however, was not born to juice cleanse. 

To start, I was completely, completely unprepared to start a juice cleanse.  During a late night online shopping session, I bit the bullet and ordered a cleanse from Raw Juicery.  I postponed the delivery, however, as a girlfriend would be staying with me for almost two weeks, Halloween was coming up and my birthday was fast approaching.  So I booked it for two days after my birthday….. and completely forgot about it.  Even when a girlfriend of mine was on her own juice cleanse at Halloween, and I was berating her for her craziness while stuffing Kit Kats into my mouth, the whole thing still slipped my mind. 

So come Wednesday morning, after a rather debauched night of excessive drinking and no sleep, I stumbled home at 6.30 am with every intent of just crawling into bed and staying there until I had to get up for work.  Come 7 am, a very chirpy young man called the intercom to announce the arrival of my juice box.  Bugger.  So I consider this massive box full of ice and 18 bottles of juice and figure this is probably the very best time to start a cleanse – after virtually a month of celebrations and drinking and chocolate and definitely not getting enough sleep. 

I should point out that I’ve probably never gone a day without food in my whole life.  Even when I’m sick I find a way to eat something.  I’m that girl you gift a bag of grapes when she’s ill.  I knew this whole just drinking juice thing was going to be a challenge. 

Day one actually went exceedingly well considering how tired I was.  I only worked in the morning and then was able to rest for the remainder of the day.  Come 6 pm I was feeling slightly nauseous and my neck hurt a little, but fresh air and a long walk around the Marina del Rey jetties fixed that.  I went to bed without feeling hungry at all and slept like the dead. 

Day two was truly horrendous.  They recommend that you don’t do any strenuous exercise on a juice cleanse, but when I got a call asking me to cover a hot power yoga class, I didn’t really have any choice but to suck it up and sweat through the pain.  Needless to say, having lost every ounce of water in my body teaching power yoga at 106 degrees, I felt pretty rotten the rest of the afternoon.  After my evening class, I came home, devoured both remaining bottles of almond milk I had left as part of the cleanse, and tried to satiate myself with a bowl of sugar snap peas (I figured a few harmless peas weren’t really breaking the cleanse!).  I went to bed early again, and proceeded to have the most horrific nightmares all night. 

By the third day I was totally over this s**t.  I drank the juice during the day as proscribed but promised myself that I would have a proper dinner at the end of the day – juice cleanse be damned!  I put the ingredients for a vegan chilli in the slow cooker and went to work for my final class of the day.  I came home to find my housemate also cooking for a friend of ours, a bottle of red wine already open on the kitchen counter.  He offered me some, and I drank two glasses, along with a large plate of chilli and brown rice and dahl.  I felt much, much better. 

I suppose the positives of this experience were that I didn’t touch any alcohol until the end of the third day, and I had no caffeine at all, which was good for me because I know I had been having too much of both recently.  It also encouraged me to think more carefully about how much I enjoy healthy options for food – I was desperately yearning for vegetables and fruit and brown rice and fish through the whole ordeal.  A cleanse is supposed to be a reset and I think that applies to the way you consider food too.  I guess I probably lost a few pounds but overall I generally felt miserable, sore and tired during the cleanse.  I had headaches all three days and I felt like a gremlin was dancing around my abdominal cavity for the larger part of the third day.  How do people do this for more than three days?! 

Meanwhile, I have returned to the joy of food.  No more juice cleanses for me.  At least I can say that I’ve tried it – and never really need to do so again.  

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