Clear Change Program Detox: Day 8 You’re Almost There

I’m proud of myself for…

being self-disciplined enough to make it this far in this program. It hasn’t been an easy process, and I sure wouldn’t have done it just for fun, but I’m proud that I’m doing it, and I’m proud that I’ve stuck to it all these days in a row. 

Today is the day to add in other fruits and vegetables and white rice (although I’m allergic to rice, so I didn’t eat any).  For some reason, yesterday I thought I was going to be able to eat other meats today (not just fish), so I bought chicken wings.  Much to my chagrin, I realized protein sources today are limited to fish and legumes, but I had already started cooking the wings for dinner (one of my son’s favorite meals).  I did have two wings because I just couldn’t resist. I hope that doesn’t mess things up too badly.


I’ve lost four pounds this week, and I can tell I’ve lost some belly fat.  I bet some of that was wine and cheese weight.  My digestion is definitely better than it was when I started the detox.  My skin is not clear yet, but I’m hoping it will get clearer in the next few days as this process ends.  It’s been a stressful couple of weeks, so I am not exactly feeling my best, but feeling better than when I started for sure.  The proof will be in the numbers next time I get my liver enzymes tested.

In the email they sent today for support, they suggested many ways of “keeping clean” after the detox ends.  The one I’m kind of bad about is using plastics.  They said never microwave with plastic, and I definitely do that. That’s a tough one to avoid for me because I am a teacher, and I take my lunch to school every day. If I bring something that needs to be heated up,  I don’t have dishes at school to use.  I already try to avoid bottled water, but sometime I do drink it depending on the circumstances.  These are areas I am going to address when I finish the detox.

“Avoid using pesticides/herbicides in your home and garden.

Consider organic whenever possible—especially with meat, dairy, and the following fruits and veggies: peaches, strawberries, bell peppers, spinach, cherries, cantaloupe, celery, apples, apricots, green beans, grapes, and cucumbers.

Drink at least 6-8 glasses of purified water each day.

Reduce your exposure to plastics. Buy juices and water in glass containers when possible. Do not microwave in plastic containers, and minimize washing plastic containers in the dishwasher under high heat. Limit use of plastic food wraps.

Eat fewer canned foods and more frozen or fresh foods.

Use natural or organic toiletry items, such as shampoo, soap, and fragrances.”

This is what I ate today: 

Breakfast:  one cup of coffee with agave nectar and half and half, smoothie with mango, coconut milk, spinach, ultra clear renew, GI boost, and probiomax.

Lunch:  leftover baked cod with peas, coconut oil, and sea salt

Snack:  ultra clear renew drink, two chicken wings

Dinner:  more leftover backed cod with peas and carrots

Snack:  ultra clear renew drink, GI boost, and probiomax

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

 

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Clear Change Program: day 7 Just Do It

Today I learned about…

Headspace-it’s a meditation app. Meditation is such an important part of an overall wellness plan. And why not use an app with guided meditation? I just did ten minutes today, but it definitely helped me unwind at the end of the day.

I didn’t get to the gym today like I usually do on Saturdays because I didn’t want to leave my daughter alone. So today was a stay inside and get stuff done kind of day. Toward the middle of the afternoon, I started feeling aches and pains from sitting at the computer for a while. So tonight, I took an epsom salt bath, did ten minutes of meditation, and some gentle stretching. I’ve been so sore recently I can’t seem to do much more. My body is telling me to slow down, so I’m listening. The detox program guide does advise slowing down. Although I could benefit from a bit more movement/exercise, I’m having trouble getting it in this week due to everything going on and my annoying aches and pains.

One week into the detox, and I’m starting to get used to it. My craving for wine is gone. I went to the grocery store and just got fish and produce for myself and didn’t feel tempted to get anything off the restricted diet. I did get other stuff for my kids of course, and I ended up making three dinners: one for me, something different for my son, and another dinner for my daughter who just had a tonsil/adenoidectomy. It’s tiring keeping up with the shopping and the cooking! But my dinner was actually quite tasty, and I managed to get in all the shakes and supplements as instructed today.

I notice the mornings get away from me in terms of eating. I have a shake and a cup of coffee and then I don’t have much else for a while. I have to work on having a morning snack more consistently and eating lunch at a decent time. During the week while I’m working I’m better about it than the weekends.

I just can’t seem to go without any coffee at all. I am SO tired in the morning. This morning especially because I had to set my alarm to wake every couple of hours to give my daughter medicine.

Breakfast: smoothie with apple, ultraclear renew, GI replenish, probiomax, and water. One cup of coffee with half and half and agave.

Morning snack: apple and celery

Lunch: ultraclear renew drink

Afternoon snack: ultraclear renew drink

Dinner: baked cod with olive oil, garlic, sea salt, peppers, and scallions. Garlic braised broccoli. Salad with romaine, cucumbers, and radishes.

Night time snack: ultraclear renew drink with GI replenish and probiomax.


I am looking forward to eating more of a variety of food again starting tomorrow! And I’m proud of myself for making it seven days so far on this program.

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Clear Change Program: day 6 Just Do It

Today I noticed my energy level to be…

Today I didn’t go to work because I took my daughter to have her tonsils and adenoids removed. My energy level was around medium, not high, not low. As the mom, I had to be strong and guide my daughter through a scary process. I had to be a caring, loving, reassuring presence so my focus was on her instead of myself.

Breakfast: ultra clear renew drink, GI boost, and probiomax

Lunch: leftover salmon with peas, another ultra clear renew drink.

Dinner: more leftover salmon with kidney beans, broccoli, and peas, another ultra clear renew drink with a pear.

Snack: ultra clear renew drink, GI boost, probiomax

I had one cup of coffee today and no wine again. The slogan “just do it” is kind of helping me get through the day. I’m not particularly excited about the food choices, but i know in few days I’ll be back to eating more of a variety.  I just need to do it for the sake of my health.

I did notice that my stomach doesn’t hurt like it usually does. That’s really good news as I usually constantly have a stomach ache.  Like when I press on my abdomen it’s sore. I’ve had a CT scan and abdominal ultrasound and everything is normal. They say if it’s inflammation those tests won’t catch it. So it makes me wonder if my pain is from inflammation and now it’s going away because of the detox. If that’s the case, wow! It makes me a little nervous to return to my normal diet and eating/drinking habits.

Thanks for reading this entry.

Clear Change Program: day 5 Just Do It

Today I’m struggling with…

It was another bear of a day. I feel like I’m being tested. So many challenges going on in my life. Serious issues going on at work and so many demands in my personal life. Today I’m struggling with not having a glass of wine to wind down and help me manage stress. I almost was weak and bought some when I stopped at the store after work, but I didn’t. I was strong. The program guide says days 5-7 are the hardest days. I don’t really want to ruin the detox by having a weak moment. So instead my son and I got a bottle of sparkling apple juice, and he thought it was fun to drink it out of champagne glasses.

The restrictions these three days are really tough. I can basically eat fish, beans, vegetables, and apples, and pears. But the good news is this program isn’t about weight loss, so I can eat as much as I want as long as I only eat the approved foods.

Breakfast: ultraclear renew drink, GI boost, and probiomax

Lunch: leftover cauliflower stir fry with black beans

Snack: ultraclear renew drink

Dinner: Baked salmon with garlic, lemon, olive oil, sea salt and garlic, avocado, and peas.

Snack: apple and ultra clear renew drink, GI boost, and probiomax.

I was supposed to have four ultra clear renew drinks but I only had three. My morning just completely got away from me.


I had one cup of coffee and drank a bunch of water. I’m completely failing in the ‘getting plenty of rest’ category. There are just too many things to do and not enough time. My daughter’s having surgery tomorrow, so I had to have things ready for me to miss work. Hopefully I can rest more this weekend!

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Clear Change Program Detox: Day 4 Stay Hydrated 

Today I’m feeling…

I’m feeling busy and stressed and having a hard time keeping up with everything. Four days into the detox, I’m adjusting to the restrictions and trying to make sure I get all the shakes and supplements in. It’s not that easy especially because of how crazy this week has been for me.

Breakfast: smoothie with frozen cherries, chia seeds, ultra clear renew, GI replenish, and probiomax.

Snack: pear

Lunch: leftover cod with romaine and avocado

Snack: ultra clear renew drink

Dinner: baked mahi mahi with lemon, olive oil, sea salt and pepper, avocado & romaine salad, and cauliflower stir fried with onions and garlic. GI replenish and  probiomaxz

Drank zero coffee today and also didn’t have any wine again. Trying to drink lots of water to assist the detox process.

I’m reading the literature and laughing about the fact it says to kind of take it easy during these ten days. I’m doing nothing of the sort, in fact I’m completely exhausted from going to work early and then working late and I have to get up early again tomorrow. All this cooking with vegetables and fresh fish takes a lot of planning and prep. I didn’t eat dinner until 8:00 tonight. Not ideal, but at least I got the nutrients.

I lost both my yoga mats recently too, so I can’t even unwind by doing yoga at home! Ugh.

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Clear Change Program Detox: day 2 Add Nutritional Support.


Today was not a great day. It was one of those days that started out alright and then turned stressful and draining. The best I could do was take it one step at a time and do my best to stick to the detox in the process.

I took all the nutritional supplements and kind of stuck to the diet.

Breakfast: one cup of coffee with agave nectar and half and half, smoothie with pineapple, spinach, coconut milk, chia seeds, the ultra clear renew, ultra GI replenish as well as the probiomax.

Lunch: ultra clear renew mixed with water. I meant to eat a salad with chick peas for protein, but I accidentally left it at home.

Snack: apple

Dinner: homemade turkey and vegetable soup, above mentioned salad

I feel like I NEED one cup of coffee in the morning, and I usually have two, so at least I’m reducing caffeine. Although I was stressed today, I did NOT have a glass of wine.

I meant to eat more, but I was out most of the day and didn’t bring enough with me.  I also drank a lot of water with lemon.

Because I was feeling the effects of my day, I took an epsom salt bath and am getting some rest. I did it! I survived and I’m going back to bed.

At the end of the day, I am grateful that even though it wasn’t the best day, it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been.  There’s so much craziness and pain in the world. I am thankful I’m safe and healthy and looking forward to a better day tomorrow.

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Clear Change Program Detox: day 3 Elimination Time 

Today I feel inspired to…

eat healthy! This is the first day of the more restricted diet. I was worried about only eating fish and legumes only for protein, but I am not hungry at all, and I stuck to the diet today eating enough to have a full belly.

When I stepped on the scale this morning, I was already a few pounds lighter. My pants are fitting a little looser.  I can feel something changing in my body already.  I also noticed a slight decrease in my chronic pain today. However, I’m not feeling my best overall yet though. Feeling very tired today.

Breakfast:  one cup coffee, smoothie with mango, spinach, chia seeds, coconut milk, ultra clear renew, ultra GI replenish, and probiomax plus DF.

Lunch:  baked cod with olive oil, garlic, lemon, sea salt & pepper, salad with romaine, kale, cucumber, celery, avocado, basil, sauerkraut, and black beans.

Snack:  Coconut milk with ultra flora balance and GI boost.

Dinner, leftover cod and salad with broccoli and butternut squash with coconut oil, sea salt and pepper.

Snack: blackberries

Plus I drank a lot of water and didn’t drink any wine again.  I’m feeling confident now that I can make it ten days without any wine.  I feel inspired to give this process my 100% effort so I can reap the most benefits.

Heading to bed so I can work on getting a lot of sleep as well. Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Clear Change Program Detox Day 1 Ready.Set.Go.

I started this program because…

Today is the first day of a ten day detox program I am going to follow.  Below is a picture of the kit I bought from my chiropractor.  I chose to start this program because I recently had some lab tests done, and apparently my liver enzymes are a bit elevated.  I’ve been taking Naproxen since July for pain, so my doctor (a rheumatologist I saw because of chronic back pain) told me to stop taking it and to reduce alcohol.  After discussing it with my chiropractor, he suggested I do the full detox which involves ten days with no alcohol, a restricted diet, and nutritional supplements to support the metabolic detoxification process in the liver and rebuilding the probiotics in the gut.

X-rays showed that I have degenerative (wear and tear) arthritis throughout my spine, and apparently the neck and back muscles spasm in response to try to stabilize the joints.  My chiropractor said that liver and intestinal inflammation can also cause pain, so I’m hoping a natural detox will be a step in the right direction in the fight against chronic pain as well as lowering my liver enzymes in my blood.

I’m excited, and I’m also nervous. I want to increase my overall health, but it’s going to be a challenge for me to follow all the guidelines.  Blogging about my daily experiences is a great way for me to process everything and to share my experiences with my friends and family.

I’ve read over all the materials, and I’m prepared for the restricted diet.  I already have a restricted diet due to food allergies, so it’s not far off from how I normally eat.  But I can only eat meats on days 1-2 and 9-10.  Days 3-8 I’m allowed either fish or legumes for protein. That will be different for me.  I’m also supposed to avoid shellfish, which I love!  Days 3-8, fruits are also restricted to just apples, pears, lemon, lime, and avocados.  Days 5-7, vegetables are restricted to cruciferous vegetables, raw greens, onions, leeks, garlic, and scallions.  I don’t eat any grains at all, so I won’t be consuming them even on the days they are allowed (they allow rice and gluten free grains except corn on days 1-2 and 9-10).  I already don’t eat much dairy (just half and half in my coffee, cheese, and greek yogurt), so it won’t be too hard for me to avoid that. Although, I am worried about eliminating coffee altogether. I’m not sure I’m going to be able to do that, but I will at least reduce it.  All of the other foods on the “avoid” list are already not part of my diet (processed meats, processed oils, refined sugars, peanuts/peanut butter, dairy products, eggs, non-water drinks, etc.

Today, I ate pretty regularly and only took the ProBiomax plus DF supplement.

Breakfast: One cup of coffee with half and half and agave, smoothie with pineapple, spinach, chia seeds, and coconut milk

Snack: Kombucha drink (no sugar)

Lunch: Organic turkey with homemade gravy (garbanzo bean flour), cranberry sauce with agave nectar, kale salad with cucumbers and garbanzo beans

Snack: raw almonds with golden raisins

Dinner:  Turkey soup with yellow squash, mushrooms, carrots, rosemary, thyme, scallions, garlic

No wine, yay me! Instead, I had some healthy cucumber and ginger infused water with basil and mint in a wine glass just for the fun of holding the glass.  Honestly, it didn’t really matter about the glass, and I did just fine without any wine.  I also tried to drink a lot of water as recommended (64 oz. per day is the recommendation).

I’m hoping not only to lower my liver enzymes but also for improved sleep, digestion, clearer skin, and more energy.  Wish me luck!

For more information on the detox program, check out their website by clicking here.

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

detox

21 Day Yoga Girl Challenge Day 9: True Forgiveness #yogagirlchallenge

Forgiveness is today’s challenge, to let go of past grudges and hurts, to let go of blame, shame, and guilt. Forgiving others and ourselves is a powerful way of releasing negative energy and freeing ourselves from the clenches of the past. It’s a way of accepting things the way they are instead of being upset and wishing they were different.

Over the years, I feel that I’ve already done a lot of work in this area and have forgiven others who may have hurt me and have let go of any grudges I held against other people. I feel much more peaceful inside and willing to go with the flow of life. I’ve also forgiven myself for things I’ve done wrong and have stopped judging and criticizing myself.

Today, the person I need to forgive is myself-for eating foods that I know I can’t tolerate due to allergies/sensitivities.

These are dyshidrotic eczema blisters on my finger that I get as an allergic reaction to offending foods. They are painful, fluid filled blisters that itch intensely and pop open then crack and bleed as they split into fissures. This painful condition affects the feet and hands. I also get regular eczema (red, itchy patches) on my face, neck, and body as well as hives and a stomach ache for a while.

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This is what happens after just a few meals of no-no foods. If I continue to eat what I like it will get really bad. So I try every day every snack every meal to make the right choices. It’s a very restrictive diet (no grains, sugar, eggs, vinegar, nightshade vegetables) and most of the time I have a lot of self-discipline. But sometimes I mess up and then I pay the price for about a week or two. I won’t fall on the floor and die, but I will continue to get sicker and sicker if I don’t stop.

Click here to see more pictures and read an earlier post about my dyshidrotic eczema (before I changed my diet in may 2013. It used to be really bad!

It’s kind of a vicious cycle because I will eat really clean for a while and feel great. Then I will have a craving and think maybe I can handle a little bit. So I will eat something that’s off limits, and even though my mouth and my stomach are happy at the moment, the reaction happens every.single.time. You would think I would learn that no I can’t handle even a little bit!

I forgive myself for messing up a few times in the past week. It’s tough to have self discipline all the time every single day. My body is telling me it needs a clean diet to run properly. So I’m thankful I have figured out why I used to have so many symptoms and how to change my diet so I feel healthy and well. Just like falling off the Paddleboad during yoga class on the ocean, I will get back up and try again. Tomorrow’s a new day, and I can start again.

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I’m loving this challenge so far and trying to weave as many days together as possible. Did some yin yoga at home today as I felt super tired and needed some relaxation and restoration. I’ve been on time everywhere I’ve needed to go. Drank lemon water, walked my dogs, meditated before bed and in the morning. Cassidy’s educational fund grew even more, and I’ve been kind to everyone I’ve come into contact with.

Thanks for reading this entry. Peace out!

Intuition: Listening to my body

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Sometimes in life, we have to stop listening to what other people say and listen to ourselves. In most cases, our intuition leads us in the right direction. But sometimes, society or even our own sense of adventure tells us otherwise, leading to internal conflicts.

I’ve noticed messages from my body in two main ways lately and am trying to take heed of their warnings: pain and food allergies/intolerance (digestive issues leading to eczema, hives, and other physical issues).

This is not the first time I’ve written about chronic pain. I never experienced daily pain until my NOLS Semester in the Rockies (1989), and I’ve never gone a day without pain ssince then. Perhaps I strained muscles and other soft tissues on my 95 day exploration and adventures in Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah. CT scans show some arthritis and bulging discs in the neck and low back, a hemangioma on T5, and signs of old compression fractures on T8 and T9, but they say nothing that should cause daily pain. In 1997, I had an osteochondroma removed from underneath my right scapula, and the doctors thought that would relieve most if not all of my thorascic pain. After five abdominal surgeries (two ovarian cysts and a dermoid tumor, appendix, and two umbilical hernia repairs) and seven surgeries on my right leg (five on the knee for torn meniscus, and two on the ankle for torn ATFL and tendons on both sides in the back) my body is not quite what it used to be. I’ve become accustomed to feeling stiff, sore, and achy and have changed my exercise regimen to include more physical therapy, yoga, biking, swimming, and other low-impact activities. Yet, I still have pain day to day. I seek the fine line between strengthening and conditioning and injury.

Yet, my spirit longs for more, so occasionally I get tempted to push my limits and challenge myself. The most recent example of this is back in May when I decided to join in the #handstand365 challenge. While I knew I couldn’t do a handstand every single day for a year, I thought I’d try doing them when I felt I could and still try to get to 365 of them. I made it to 29 so far. And now my neck hurts more than it used to, so I’ve been taking a break from it for a couple of weeks. I remember doctors and physical therapists telling me that becaues I have three bulging discs in my neck (C3/4, 4/5, and 5/6) that I should avoid lifting weights over my head. In fact, my physical therapist also told me to stop doing shoulder shrugs with weights and to start pulling resistance bands DOWN toward the floor to encourage those muscles (the levator scapulae?) to lengthen. I thought doing handstands would be ok since they are considered “yoga” moves and ignored earlier warnings not to do inversion exercises like headstands, handstands, and shoulder stands because of neck issues.

I learned how to do handstands as a child when I was a gymnast. I didn’t realize that doing them “yoga” style was different, but I finally figured that out when one of the #handstand365 teacher posted a video of her handstand instead of just a still picture. I noticed she went into it from downward-facing dog. I was going into them from a standing position. I noticed the yoga handstand was more fluid, slow, and easy on the body. When I tried to do them that way, it was much harder for me. I wasn’t even doing them right, duh! And I wasn’t always doing them as part of a yoga practice. handstands here and there in cool places and sometimes after having drinks with friends (not very yoga-like). I started noticing from the pictures that in almost every one, my body leaned to the left (my left leg is shorter than my right, maybe that’s why? I don’t know but check out the pictures). And what the pictures don’t show is that I land on my right leg every time (and that’s the one that’s had seven surgeries). My leg is getting more sore, and my neck is hurting more these days, so I hate to say it but I must listen to what my body is telling me and put my #handstand365 challenge on the back burner for a while. Maybe one day I will get stronger and be able to do them better, but I’m worried that putting my body weight on my hands like that is just as bad if not worse than lifting weights over my head. After so many surgeries in my past, I know that the consequences of getting hurt again are serious!

Since May, I’ve removed gluten from my diet again. A couple weeks ago, I also started eating a paleo diet. That means no grains, dairy, refined sugars and oils, and legumes (including peanut). I wrote another entry about getting diagnosed with gluten sensitivity. My dietician told me to go ahead and experiment with gluten-free products that include corn, hoping to open up more options for me. Based on past results, corn and sugar (they are in the same family) do not agree with me. I react and get sick every time I have them. I tried to tell her that, but she urged me to try it and see. So I did. And I got really sick; I call it ‘corn poisoning’ because that’s how it feels. After following up with my chiropractor at a natural wellness center, I took his advice to completely eliminate grains from my diet for a month and also try the paleo diet to give my digestive system a break. Apparently, my small intestine was spasming, and my stomach was irritated. For weeks, I’ve had a bad stomach and back ache, so I can tell something is very wrong. Having a diagnosis helps me keep a strict gluten-free diet, and hearing that my guts are as bad as they feel is enough to give me the self-discipline it takes to eat a paleo diet. I need to listen to my gut, literally, and eat the foods that make me feel healthy not sick. Apparently, the proteins in grains are difficult to digest, and dairy products are also inflammatory. Although it’s very difficult to eat paleo, after a month I will reassess and hopefully be able to introduce some brown rice and cheese at the very minimum. I really miss those two things! I’m definitely not going to reintroduce corn again. This is the second time I’ve eliminated it from my diet, and the cause/effect relationship is clear, so I am going to trust my instinct and away from it altogether. I don’t really feel the need to get a corn allergy test because I definitely react when I eat it.

Over the next months and years, I look forward to feeling healthier with less pain, and will focus on taking one day at a time.