Health/Fitness/Review: Update & Dr. Oz “3 Day Cleanse” Review

Hey everyone!
If you’ve been following my blog since January – what’s that? You’re not following me? How silly! There’s an easy fix for that! Just click the FOLLOW button at the top right of this page & you’ll be notified whenever I post something new. There, now that’s taken care of…This post will focus on updating y’all on The “Lowe” Down, the Health/Fitness plan I worked on with my friend Kylee Lowe (Instagram: @loveleeloe) and a Review of the Dr. Oz “3 Day” Cleanse. Get ready folks, it’s a long post…

In January when I moved home from SoCal I promised myself I was going to get in great shape before my 25th birthday – June 7th. I had (& still have) no job to take up my time and the added incentive of having a live in workout buddy in the form of my mom. I knew I needed to kick things up a notch so I worked with Kylee, who’s my go-to Fitness Guru. To read my previous posts about The “Lowe” Down which includes a Clean Eating Meal Plan and Exercise Routine click here, here, here, and here!

The plan we worked out was 4 weeks long & I promised to keep you updated at least once a week, but that didn’t happen & I apologize. The reason I decided to stop posting about my progress was because…there was no progress! After 3 weeks of eating clean and regular exercise, I actually gained weight! I was so upset! I had stuck to the plan Kylee created for me with only minor healthy modifications. I did struggle with the work outs because I didn’t really know what to do once I got to the gym – one of the downfalls of having your personal trainer in another state, but I still did some form of exercise at least 5 times a week! I’ve never really had a problem losing weight before. I just assumed I was heavy because I didn’t really care to be any other way. However, now that I was busting my buns in the kitchen & the gym – I was distraught to see the scale refusing to budge. This was an eye opening lesson for me. I can be an unsympathetic critic at times. In the past when I’d hear stories about people who “tried every diet but nothing worked”, I would scoff and roll my eyes. “Oh please,” I would think, “It’s basic science. Less calories in, more energy out, creates a deficit.” After seeing how hard I worked those 3 weeks with no loss in sight, I would like to apologize to anyone I have ever judged. We have no idea what’s really going on when we look at other people. We have no idea how far they’ve come, how hard they’re working, & honestly, none of that matters because it’s none of our business. Be supportive of others, but keep your eyes on your own path!

As I mentioned in my first Fitness related post, I’m fairly confident in my looks. Believe it or not, I’m in good health, my only issues stem from a lifelong minor kidney issue & injuries from cheerleading. I started this journey looking at it from a preventative angle. If I get fit now, when I find work and have less time, I’ll be at my optimum operating level. If I happen to gain weight, I’ll still be at a much healthier place than if I were to gain weight at my current state. With that being said, after not losing any weight & watching my mom lose 20 (!!!) pounds, my self esteem started to crumble. I am self destructive when I compare myself to others which I think stems from being overly competitive and a perfectionist. I TRY to have a relaxed attitude about other people’s lives because at the end of the day, to quote my favorite band, The Rocket Summer, “What’s right for me, might be not right for you”. For example, a majority of my friends graduated college at age 21 or 22, while I was still working towards my AA in community college. Sure, I felt a stab of anxiety that maybe my life was going nowhere & a hint of jealousy that they were accomplishing something major. Then I considered that they haven’t lived my life. We’ve walked very different roads and made different choices. With this in mind I’m able to keep some perspective and be genuinely happy for others while maintaining confidence in my journey. As I said earlier, be supportive of others, but keep your eyes on your own path! As you might imagine, being a teenager was Hell for me, haha! In my youth, I hadn’t quite developed the attitude I described above. Comparing myself to my friends put me in an extremely dark place that I would never like to revisit. However, while dealing with this weight loss issue, I saw shades of that darkness starting to creep out and I became extremely frustrated and emotional. I shared some of these frustrations with the personal trainer I worked with in SoCal and he helped me make some more healthy modifications to The “Lowe” Down.

Another month later and my weight loss was a grand total of….FOUR POUNDS! My faith in eating healthy and working out had been struck down. What was the point of not eating pizza and ice cream, and spending time at the gym instead of with friends, if all I had to show was a measly 1 pound a week?! NOT. WORTH. IT. Yes, I am aware that the healthiest way to lose weight is 1 to 2 lbs a week, but I want to be that person that loses 8lbs a month, dang it! On top of feeling emotionally disgruntled, I was also in near constant physical pain from injuring my hip somehow at the beginning of March. Seriously, it’s a mystery, I have no idea what I did. With my birthday goal date fast approaching, I did what any sensible person would do, work harder! I threw in the towel! Yes, I gave up! I spent a week eating Wingstop, pizza, Panda Express, Ice Cream, cookies & all sorts of indulgent foods & didn’t count one delicious calorie! However, a funny thing happened. In the midst of all that, I noticed…I didn’t feel good. I felt exhausted, sluggish, heavy, I needed naps in the middle of the day, my body was protesting, “Stop! What are you doing to me!?”. For the first time in my life…I have decided to listen to my body.

I can’t ignore the incredible negative difference I felt in that “Cheat Week” compared to when I was eating clean. My outside appearance may not show any remarkable changes, but my insides sure felt them & as I’m doing this for my health & not looks, that’s all that matters. So I’m back at it! My hip is STILL hurting, even after some time away from the gym, but I work out despite many other injuries, so I’ll just add this one to the list. I now have a much more realistic outlook. I’m not perfect, I love food, & putting so much pressure on myself to lose a certain number of pounds by a certain date was adding more stress than was necessary. Now there are no goal dates, there’s a goal number but it’s sitting on the back burner. I started this new phase off with the Dr. Oz “3 Day Cleanse” which I will briefly review down below, but even while doing that – I ate pasta. SUE ME! My grandma makes amazing pasta but she hardly ever makes it anymore. Was I going to pass up the chance to enjoy her homemade cooking? NOPE! I don’t need a fit body to help me make money, or help me do my job (if I had one), or ensure the safety of others in some way. I’m doing this for me, & on the last day of my cleanse, my grandma made me some pasta, which may have been a little misguided on her part, haha!, but was a kind gesture nonetheless. If I were to die tomorrow, I would want to be remembered as someone that loved good food, valued the feelings of others, & appreciated the gestures they made. I’ll just have to kick butt in the gym a little harder than usual now!

If you’ve read this far, thank you! I know I can be long winded, but hopefully you found something in this post worthwhile. Please read below my short (I promise!) review of the Dr. Oz “3 Day Cleanse”.

Credit to Dr. Oz

Credit to Dr. Oz

Review: I will come right out & admit – I “cheated” on this cleanse. Take my advice with a grain of salt, this is just my experience with it & how I made it work for me. I spaced all the drinks 2 hours apart.
– Disclaimer: I never drank the Green Tea, took the vitamins, or did the Detox Ultra Bath. I have a weird kidney issue that prevents me from drinking Green Tea, taking too many pills, and putting soap/salt/oils in my bath water. With that in mind, I knew this Cleanse would probably not yield weight loss results, so I was not expecting them. I was hoping to feel lighter and more energized, which I do, so I feel that it served its purpose. I have recommended this cleanse to friends.
– Day 1: The Lunch Drink was a bit hard to choke down because of the texture. I used my juicer for everything except the pineapple, coconut oil, & Almond Milk. I threw those 3 ingredients into my Magic Bullet then added the juice for a final blend, but it still resulted in a stringy, foamy texture. I didn’t drink the Snack Drink because I was feeling super full. Attempted to drink the Dinner Drink & absolutely could NOT manage. The Cayenne Pepper was so overpowering even though I put in less than the recipe called for. I couldn’t finish it, so I had chicken & veggies for dinner.
– Day 2: Fine until the Lunch Drink. This time I put everything in my juicer except the coconut oil & Almond Milk, but the texture was the same. For Snack & Dinner, I decided not to blend the ingredients at all and eat them as a salad or on their own. Cayenne Pepper is way more delicious sprinkled over Mango and Avocado than in a smoothie. I felt insanely tired this day. I think the 2nd day of a cleanse is always the hardest because your body is starting to figure out what you’re doing.
– Day 3: I decided to just eat the meals as stand alone foods or in a salad. This was much easier and tastier. I was happy to not waste any food. When I make a juice/smoothie & it turns out disgusting, I feel bad throwing it away. I’ll try to finish it but sometimes it makes me feel sick, so I’d rather toss it even though I hate watching my money go down the drain. Of course, tonight was the night of aforementioned Grandma’s Pasta, sorry I’m NOT sorry.

Okay, it’s finally over! You made it! Thank you for sticking with this post to the very end, what did you think? There was so much more I wanted to say, but I knew I was going on too much already. Have you ever experienced that emotional roller coaster that comes with weight loss or changing your lifestyle in general? Have you tried the Dr. Oz “3 Day Cleanse” or anything similar? Please let me know some good cleanses to try in the comments below! I think I’m going to try out a different cleanse every weekend…every month?…every now and then? I’m not sure, but I want to be the tester for y’all! Send me your thoughts, I’d love to chat! Thank you for reading…until next time!

Week 3! Mid Week Update! The “Lowe” Down: Get Fit with Kylee Lowe!

Hello all!
I hope this post finds you all well! Today I’ll be posting my results & recapping my experience of Week 2 (Days 8 – 15) & giving a mid week update on my progress through Week 3 (Days 16 – 21) of the “Lowe” Down: Get Fit with Kylee Lowe! If you’ve been keeping up with the blog (click the FOLLOW button on the top right of this page to get email notifications whenever I post) you’ll remember the “Lowe” Down is a Health/Fitness Plan created for me by my friend and Fitness Guru, Miss Kylee Lowe. Check out her Instagram: @loveleeloe for fitness tips, yummy healthy recipes, and other fun goodies. Screen Shot 2015-02-18 at 7.52.02 PM

Week 2 Weight: ~ 5lbs                 > Week 3: About the same
Week 2 Measurements                > Week 3 Measurements
Biceps: (L) – 12”, (R) – 12.5”        Biceps: (L) – 11″, (R) – 11.5″
Chest/Bust: 42″                            Chest: 43″
Waist: 34”                                     Waist: 33″
Hips: 45.5”                                    Hips: 46″
Thighs: (L) – 26”, (R) – 25.75”      Thighs: (L) – 26.75″, (R) – 26″
I would be lying if I said these were the results I’m looking for, but I know this can be a slow process. I wish I was losing more weight, but I’m keeping in mind that numbers on the scale can be misleading and measurements and how I feel are more important. With that being said, although I’ve gained some inches back in my Chest/Hips/Thighs, I think that makes sense based on the Weight Lifting plan I’m on. I’m still losing in my waist, so that’s keeping me motivated. Also, I can feel my body changing – I know it hasn’t been that long – but I feel leaner and lighter. Other people have even commented that I look taller, I’m obviously not – haha!, but I think that’s due to my muscles changing which is causing my posture to change.

Days 8 – 14:
Week 2 had some interesting highs and lows. Around Day 10 I started feeling sick after some of the more vegetable heavy meals, such as the Green Juice and the Veggies/Hummus snack. I guess maybe that was my body getting used to the changes, but I’d been eating the same food all week with no negative reaction – I’m not sure what changed. I tried to stick to the meal plan as best as I could, but as soon as my stomach started to feel queasy, I stopped eating. I didn’t binge on other foods, which is obviously a plus, but I’m sure it’s not great that I wasn’t finishing all the meals. I’m happy to be going to the gym on a regular basis. I do enjoy working out, believe it or not. I’m just not sure I’m doing the right stuff or that my form is correct – one of the negatives of having your trainer live in a different state! 😦 I might look into working with a Personal Trainer from my gym just for a session on proper form. I’ve also signed up for a month long pass at a Dance Studio that offers Hot Hula, Zumba, Yoga, Pilates, etc, and I’m really excited to start that in March.

The “Lowe” Down – Week 3!

Days 15 – 21:
Not much to report this week. Week 3 is the same meal plan as Week 2. Fitness is almost the same – add another day of weight training. I was hoping to get some new recipes because I have enjoyed learning about proper portion size and different healthy recipes, but I guess if it’s not broke – don’t fix it!

Have you been following along with my posts about The “Lowe” Down? What are your thoughts at this point? I can’t wait to see the end results of all this after Week 4! Keep checking back to follow my progress and contact Kylee on Instagram: @loveleeloe if you’re interested in working with her on a Get Fit plan of your own! Thanks for reading, until next time…

Mid Week Update! Get the “Lowe” Down: Get Fit with Kylee Lowe!

Hi all! Keep reading to see what happened during Days 2 & 3 of the Juicing Phase of The “Lowe” Down, a Diet/Fitness plan created by my friend & fitness guru Kylee Lowe! Go follow her on Instagram: @loveleeloe and contact her to get a plan of your own! Follow me on Instagram/Twitter: @missal_leigh for more updates and pics! Click here to see what happened on Day 1 and the full Week 1 plan!

IMG_3028First off, just in case anyone is curious, here are my Starting Measurements. I would like to lose at least 10 inches from my Chest/Waist/Hips, but obviously, I expect that will take some time.
Biceps: (L) – 13.25”, (R) – 13.5”
Chest/Bust: 43”/36-38 DDD
Waist: 36”
Hips: 45.5”
Thighs: (L) – 26.25”, (R) – 26.5”

Day 2 & 3:
As expected Days 2 & 3 went much better than Day 1. I did not find Juicing, or at least Kylee’s version of it, to be as difficult as people say it is. I think that’s because my diet problems don’t stem from eating too much, too often, they stem from not eating often enough and then binging on unhealthy items. For example, when I was in school (in December lol), I would have a somewhat healthy breakfast, then eat maybe one or two granola/protein bars throughout the day. After being in class all day – trust me when I say ALL day, my last semester at Chapman I took 22 units/7 classes – I would go out with friends and have appetizers, dinner, dessert, and most likely a few drinks. Basically all my food was being eaten with no calorie count in mind, after 7pm or later, which is when you’re supposed to STOP eating! With that in mind, drinking/eating every 2 hours was challenging because I would still be somewhat full from the meal before. There was definitely an adjustment/learning period and it almost felt like once I was really starting to get the hang of the routine – we moved on to Day 4. I’m happy to eat “real food”, but I also feel like I could’ve Juiced a little longer. Overall, my biggest complaint was that I had no personal taste for some of the menu items. The Green Juice and Butternut Squash soup were just not tasty to me. I knew from the get-go that they probably wouldn’t be as I’m not a huge fan of the ingredients of the Green Juice or Butternut Squash. Despite that, I wanted to stick to the exact plan Kylee laid out for me. The Energy and Antioxidant Juice were amazing! I’ll drink those all day, everyday! If I Juice again, I know I will have to suffer through the Green Juice because of all the vegetables it has in it, but I will try to find another soup that’s just as healthy but has a flavor I enjoy more.

Day 4:
Today has been really awesome! I feel great! Tons of energy, even now at 10pm. I don’t know if I feel more energized because the effects of the Juicing are taking over or because I got to eat some more substantial meals – haha! Like I said, the Juicing was good, but chicken and rice is better, even when you can only eat 4 oz. and 1/2 a cup of it! Now I understand why you have to start exercising on Day 4.  With all this energy running through me, I NEEDED to get out of the house and go move around. I took Bella for a walk to start out, but will most likely progress to running at the gym. The menu items for Day 4 – 7 are all really tasty and I’m excited about them. Never thought I’d be excited about vegetables! I was much better about drinking water today. It was hard to drink water with the Juices because I wasn’t thirsty and I felt kind of overwhelmed by all the liquids…and constantly having to pee. Sorry, TMI! Moving on…I feel confident about sticking to the diet for the next few days. I’m excited to see what Kylee comes up for Week 2, which will be posted on Sunday, February 8th! Check back in then & keep checking Instagram: @missal_leigh for special updates and @loveleeloe to get in contact with Kylee to get The “Lowe” Down for yourself!

What do you think? Please send me some love/advice/questions/concerns, in the comment box below – thanks for reading!