Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Oh So Right. Ooooh So Wrong. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Here I am with one of those bittersweet reports of triumph pie with a side of defeat.

The first two weeks of my fitness journey started out feeling like a failure. Instead of 4 days of strength training, I was only getting two days at 15-20 minutes each. As I poked out my lip and mounted the scale at the end of week 2, I was shocked to see that I was down 7 pounds. And for those of you who need the New International Translation of my crazy ramblings:

The Good News: I was actually down 7 pounds, which equaled 3.5 pounds per week, with no changes to my diet and minimal sweating.

The Bad News: I was actually down 7 pounds, which equaled 3.5 pounds per week, with no changes to my diet and minimal sweating.

Why is the same point good and bad? I found this surprisingly frustrating, because I was totally outed. If it only takes minimal work to establish a healthier weight - why haven't I reached a healthier weight?

Several things come to mind, like:
  • Bad habits.
  • The lazy after-a-long-day-work blues.
  • Or worse, something deep down inside that doesn't really wanna get'er done.
If 15 minutes, two days per week can produce a good result, what could I achieve with 15 minutes of strength training per day?

I can't think of a single good excuse why I don't dedicate 15 minutes of exercise to my daily routine - especially since I waste a good 2 hours watching my favorite TV shows. The excuses get real flimsy when I can even work 15 minutes while I'm watching a favorite TV show.

I'm out of excuses - but not out of drive. Strangely enough, I'm discovering some truth behind all of this useless struggle over my weight while reading:

Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth (Brad Blanton, PhD)

You can read about my fascination with Blanton's Radical Honesty movement:

Until next time, I wish you the best of all health for your mind, body, and spirit.

And as always: Happy Cleansing!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Here and Now

Three days ago, I started my fitness journey. Although the plan doesn't include a cleanse until November (hopefully with buddy, Mary Lee), I started with my trainer (aka sweetheart) on Sunday.

Mr. Military himself doesn't subscribe to the bounce-your-boobie school of sweating off the pounds. Yeah, walks are fine, but his routine is all about strength training.

After the first two days, I'm feeling a little like an old lady. Who got hit by a car. Off a cliff. In the rain.

Workout days are Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday. I can add a Friday or Saturday if I like. But right now I don't feel like adding anything except an ice pack and a burger.

We sat together and wrote a 4-week goal before I started on Sunday. I took the following measurements as points to track my progress on a weekly basis.

1. Weight
2. Calves
3. Thighs
4. Hips
5. Waist
6. Chest
7. Arms

This coming Sunday will be my first weigh-in and checkup on body measurements. I'll post the results here by Monday night... or sooner if I'm having great results (of course). *smile*

Happy Cleansing, and even Happier Living !

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Can't Start Now - The Typical Cleanse Killer

Some folks cleanse like crack addicts... scratching and twitching for the next cleanse "hit." Many times at the Yahoo group, the moderator team had to express concerns to men and women who fantasized about the cleanse "high" -- and wanted to know if "a week in between cleanses is enough."

Because of that, I made sure to keep my cleansing in check... leaving at least three months in between and not trying to cleanse until I shrank and simply disappeared.

But right now, I'm feeling a little like the cleanse-addict. I haven't been on one in quite a while, and I'm starting to feel like I NEED it.

I'm sure that position is justified. I have been an absolute louse towards my body and my general health. Everybody and everything (take a number) has priority status. Boyfriend, children, new puppy, work schedule, and heck, even my favorite TV shows - complete with soft pillow, evening beverage and possibly a crappy snack. This just won't do.

So my feet are back on the cleanse road, and the dang startup challenges are the same. Does any of this sound familiar?:

1. My son turns 15 and his party is this weekend. Can't start now. Hafta have cake.

2. Sweetheart has been wanting a date for a while now. We try for each weekend. Can't start now. Hafta be able to eat out.

3. The good ole' monthly cycle might be starting soon. Can't start now. There's nothing worse than cleansing during that time of the month.

No matter how much of a veteran you are, you always run the risk of sounding like a confused newbie when it's time to cleanse again. :-)

Monday, August 20, 2007

When Stress Holds the Trump Card

As you know, I am a huge supporter of the idea that cleansing the body is essentially a waste if the mind and spirit don't follow. And I notice that challenges in one area often upsets the balance in another.

I have a list of "soul" irritants that have me fantasizing about the lemonade. In other words, I'm craving a body fix for things that are challenging my mind and spirit:

1. Mom hates the boyfriend and would stab him if it was legal. Instead, I get stabbed with her tongue.

2. I haven't found a new church home since my old church ceased to exist around December 2006.

3. The rental unit is performing about as well as a rock in a 100-yard hurdle competition.

4. I got a glowing annual review at work, but the raise indicated that I must spend my days sleeping on my desk while snoring loudly.

In other words, stress dealt some wicked trump cards on me in recent months. By this past Sunday, I was emotionally exhausted and wanted nothing more than a vacation - or at least a box of Calgon.

Will a cleanse of my body (Master Cleanse) help with this emotional exhaustion? By all accounts - including my own... a cleanse just may be in order. Besides the health benefits, a cleanse generates a dramatic change in the daily routine. That "change of pace" is enough to help inspire a new perspective.

Some take sabbaticals and come back with glowy hair and flawless skin. For those of us with a more-than-hectic life, our sabbatical may lie just inside a glass of cleansing lemonade.

More later as I brush the dust from these blogging fingers.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Dusty Blogger Returns

I'm Back!

Changes on the job and a growing "To Do" list kept me away from this blog since May. So... I wanna say a warm "hello" and "thanks for waiting" to my regular readers.

Virgin cleansers often come trembling with fears about "missing food" and "cleanse symptoms like the bathroom trips." But by far, anybody who has ever cleansed understands that the biggest challenge is living a cleansed life after completing a cleanse regimen.

For some people, living a cleansed life simply means keeping a clean colon by eating the right stuff. But for me, the goal encompasses mind, body, and spirit. And if I had to make an assessment of my "Wagon Status..." I would say that I'm off the wagon right now - like a cabbage head rolling of the back of the wagon after hitting a pothole. hehe

Simple vs. Easy
I agree with BluJewel's comment that eating properly is simple. But most who fight the battle with me will agree with this: It's simple, but it's not easy.

The battle is simple, because the rules are not complicated. Shop more. Buy more "living foods" such as produce. Prepare more meals fresh. Stay away from funky additives.

But the battle isn't easy because we've developed relationships with crappy food for reasons from convenience, to laziness, to emotional eating. Enough people lose the battle each day to prove how a simple idea can be strangely difficult to live by.

So I'm here... back at the blog... to renew my passion for writing about the MasterCleanse and for healthy living beyond the lemonade.

Stay in good health, and thanks for returning with me!

Thursday, May 17, 2007 Fac.tor

It's time for another cleanse, and I have the nervous jitters of a school girl. And it isn't even about the fasting, the lemonade, or the butt pee. It's about another attempt to pursue a healthy life that may fall into a bucket of Hot Wings.

I am the first one to admit that a cleanse is faaaaaaar from a magic bullet. But most people, including myself, enter a cleanse with high hopes of continuing a healthier lifestyle. Invariably, the water heater will die, the job will get stressful, or (women) have a period swoop in like a hurricane - - and suddenly Hershey's becomes your best friend.

In the balance of health vs. weight loss... my attitude has changed greatly over the past 10 years. In my 20's, I was more concerned about a dress size than living a long healthy life. And in some cases, I considered sacrificing my health to be a size 6.

But now, I want a long life with my parents, my sons, by sweetheart, and anybody else I was placed on this earth to love and serve.

And because of that, I'll keep my high hopes for the long healthy life that can follow this next cleanse. Fear is not a Factor for me. hehe

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

I'm Almost Ready for the Lemon Spree

I finally said it out loud. It's finally going to happen. I'm ready for my next cleanse.

But my eyes aren't on my butt. I'm not pinching the extra "love" on my waist. My eye is on the spiritual benefits of fasting. Sure, I won't complain if I come out looking like Moses, with a new glow around my face. But I'm most ready for the prayer and solitude that comes with fasting.

It's amazing that anybody could feel spiritual with all that running to the bathroom. But I must admit, after all the good - the bad - and the ugly is calculated, a successful cleanse is like a breath of fresh air.

More later...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Hiding Under a Rock

I haven't posted since April 3rd. I wonder if it's because I've been hiding under a rock, hoping I didn't have to admit that:

1. Pasta and I recently became friends again and
2. Because of that, I'm still only maintaining the 10.5 pounds that I lost 2 months ago.

With diabetes on both sides of my family, I really can't play around with refined carbohydrates and extra weight on my body. I am blessed to remain in good health, but the underlying concern is always, "How long?"

I recently had a conversation about busy lives and convenience - eating out of boxes, bags, and food joints that value quantity over quality. I don't have a life that affords me hours of Martha Stewart time to prepare top notch meals. But then again, Do I?

Everybody finds time for the things they find important. And if I look at the time I have left at the end of the work day... I wonder if I simply find other things more important.

I typically get home around 6pm (sometimes later)... leaving me a good 3.5 hours before the children must go to bed. I use 1/2 hour of that to detox from the day, and another 1/2 hour dealing with "after school" issues. And perhaps my problem is that I don't want to spend a huge portion of the remaining 2.5 hours in a kitchen.

I am blessed to have a beau who loves to cook and does it well. Yesterday, he prepared a seared steak fried rice with salad. I almost locked my son in the closet when he simply asked, "Dang mom. Why didn't you ever cook like this?" What I do cook is good, but I don't know how to cook steak and forget a rice dish.

So perhaps at the end of the day, living a life of good love and good health is about accepting the help that we're blessed to receive. Whether you have a great partner who shares the chores or a great friend who will be your buddy in the travel to good health - keep running the race until something clicks and you find the balance required to achieve the most important priorities.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Knee Deep in a Bucket of Hot Wings

Well dang. Where have I been? I would say "knee deep in a bucket of hot wings," but the truth is a little worse than that. At least hot wings aren't loaded with processed carbs - which have crept back in to my routine like ants to a picnic.

I have returned to "snacking," although I snack less often than I used to. I also returned to having some soda and eating foods with "white" carbs in them. In spite of my overall habits having improved over the last 3 years, I'm in a health funk.

It's time for the cleanse I've been avoiding since the middle of March.
I had a few good excuses going... like my birthday, my sweetheart's birthday, and oh yeah..... the full moon. But now I'm out of options, unless I have a
rare disease that requires me to eat Easter Eggs every Easter Sunday or I'll implode.

The real disease is a deadly allergy to bathing suits - especially bikinis - because if I don't get on the move, I won't be stepping a single foot into swim recreation this summer.

The last thing I want to do is make cleansing/fasting/weight loss about appearance. On a certain level, appearance should be a concern. Looking your best (not somebody else's best) is a sign that you have a healthy love for yourself.

But on the most important level, I want to live a long healthy spiritual life that doesn't include a team of medical specialists and a medicine cabinet full of prescription drugs. And oh yeah, I also don't want my future to include a trip thru the roof because only a crane can get me out of the house.

That may sound like an extraordinary exaggeration, but the unhealthy people and severely obese folks didn't just wake up with a mountain of health problems. They're the product of a series of actions (and lack of actions) that multiplied into a big mess. That means the war is fought daily. Today I fight once again as I purchase my lemons (after putting down an old favorite and recent weakness - Andy Capp's Hot Fries). ::sigh:: hehe

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Good News and the Bad News...

So here I am at the halfway mark of the Weight Loss Challenge. It appears the other participants have dropped out one-by-one. But I'm still here with a goal to lose 40 pounds in 20 weeks.

At the halfway point, I'm still maintaining an 11-pound weight loss. I'm clearly short of the 20 pounds I should have shed by now. That's the bad news.

The good news is... I maintained the weight. As strange as that sounds, maintaining a loss hasn't been a historical strong point for me. But over the last 6 - 7 weeks, I discovered the magic to holding a constant weight. And learning that is just as valuable to me now as losing a few extra pounds.

I finally broke down and hired a personal trainer. Only he's free. And he's cute. And he knows how to cook vegetables.

My sweetie was going to go into personal training at one point, and he's always been the best candidate for the job. But I have avoided his help out of embarrassment. Although he doesn't have a single complaint about me, I'm not sure I want him to see me collapse after struggling through a workout.
"Honey, if you love me, just give me oxygen.
Oh yeah. And a pepperoni pizza."

At 44, he maintains like a 20-year old. And at 36, I'd probably need hospitalization after a set of push-ups. Like 2 push-ups.

But the sincerity of his heart wins the day and I finally requested his services. His loving reply to my request:
"I want my family - me, you, and the boys -
to be fit and live long lives. I love y'all."

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Life Expectancy and Health

I ran into a friend whose mother recently died at the ripe old age of 62. Young. Too young.

After holding his hand and offering my love and support, we got into a conversation about life expectancy and health.

His mother had been sick for quite a while, and he was finding comfort that she finally escaped the suffering. As he pondered the idea, he was drawn into a thought about life expectancy. Without any statistics, he concluded this from his gut:

"If you can live to the age of 55 and still be healthy, you can expect to live out your life expectancy feeling great. If you're sick and on pills by 35 and 45 years old, what do you have to look forward to?"

Something about his statement rang true with me. The television is loaded with drug ads directed at patients. People in their 20s, 30s, and 40s are choosing drugs over healthier alternatives, and the rate seems alarming. So now I am terribly curious: "Is there truth to the need to stay healthy at younger and younger ages? Should we be more concerned about eating junk food and ruining our bodies before we're threatened by our approaching 40s?"

I visited the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and followed the stats to the NCHS (National Center for Health Statistics). As it turns out, my friend wasn't far off regarding the importance of having good health earlier in life. The NCHS reports the following life expectancy stats (figures updated in 2004):

Life Expectancy at Birth (for all races):
Women: 80.4 years
Men: 75.2 years

BUT, if you manage to live to the age of 65, expectancy changes as follows:

Life Expectancy at Age 65 (for all races):
Women: 85.0
Men: 82.1

The trend continues upwards if you live another decade:

Life Expectancy at Age 75 (for all races):
Women: 85.7
Men: 87.8

In other words, the longer you live, the longer you are expected to live. Sounds crazy, but making it to the next decade is the mark of a healthy person who can expect extended years.

And to add my own spice, the sooner you can get and stay healthy, the better life you will have.
Who wants to carry a health fight into old age? And why run the risk that your increased age will make the fight much harder?

This reminds me of what a treasured mentor told me years ago.

"If I had known I was going to live this long, I would have taken care of myself."
The sentiment behind his comment was regret. I pray that you, my readers, will never have to live those words.

Here's to living a cleansed and healthy life, so you can enjoy more vibrant years!

[You can download a PDF of the CDC statistics here.]
The link goes directly to the PDF and not another landing page...

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Weight Loss Challenge 2007 - PMS and Monster Scouts

The Girl Scouts struck again with Caramel deLites. I'm waiting for Fatties Anonymous to launch a battery of lawsuits against those sweet little monster scouts and their delicious boxed treats. hehe

Actually, I fought PMS and bloating all week... a time when I crave chocolate and carbs. It's a miracle that I only put on 1.5 pounds during the fight, and I am so happy to be back on track. That still puts my total weight loss at 10.5 pounds.

I did my Turbo Jam last night, and I'm ready to graduate from the Learn & Burn DVD.

I must give props to my supportive beau, who cooked a wonderful meal yesterday, leaving
enough of the carb-less version for me to have lunch at work. Poor preparation has been my worst enemy - especially leaving home without lunch.

He started with Baby broccoli in a little butter and spices. He sauteed onions and added a few crumbles from my horseradish/cheddar burger mix. He continued by adding baked chicken wingettes, and by now the kitchen smells like a gourmet restaurant. I took out my portion before he finished the one-pot dish with long-grain rice and vermicelli.

I was terribly annoyed that my 7-year old ate his entire bowl. No - TWO entire bowls. Veggies and all. My beau is such a show-off, and I love him for it. I wonder if I'll be ready to enjoy beaches in a swimsuit with him by the summer. He loves boats. He loves to fish. After 14 years in the Navy, he just loves water.

Check back soon. I expect to report excellent progress over the next few weeks.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Weight Loss Challenge 2007 - UPDATE

So I made it through the first 5 weeks of the challenge. My goal was to lose 2 pounds per week. I am slightly ahead, losing 12 pounds in the first 5 weeks - not to mention all the wonderful inches that make my clothes fit great.

But lurking under that success was a measly 1 pound weight loss last week. It wasn't the pasta. It wasn't the bread. It wasn't even Hershey's chocolate. It was something much more sinister that could be knocking on your door right now. It was Girl Scouts.

I was determined not to get dragged into the wicked world of those cute boxes and delicious treats. I walked by dozens and dozens of boxes in front of the grocery store and other places. I returned the sweet tiny voice, "Would you like to buy some cookies?" with my own sweet, "Not today, but good luck to you."

I was on top of the world. Until an evil co-worker put out a Girl Scout cookie display that looked like a bonanza. Oh the sweet little boxes, lined-up like soldiers. As I tried to walk by, a purple box of Caramel DeLites reached out. Seriously. The tab popped and grabbed my shirt. I tried to fight, but the box was too strong. I screamed for mercy and threw my $3.50 into the money envelope.

I ate 9 cookies and slammed the lid. I went home and did Turbo Jam.

I couldn't trash the box. "I'll just save them for somebody. I hate to waste good cookies."

But the next day, I polished the box and rushed back to Turbo Jam. That's the only reason I was able to manage a pound that week.

These are the truths about attempting a major weight loss. There are mountain-top experiences, and then there are valleys paved with cookies. ::sigh:: Oh well. I'm still in great spirits and my weight continues to travel in the right direction. :-)

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Poor Planning and Your Paunch

I am suddenly a believer in old advice I heard regarding health habits - that preparation can make the difference between losing 100 pounds or gaining 50.

These weeks following my last cleanse have been quite an experience. I have more positive food habits than ever. I rarely eat carbs, and I don't load when I do. I drink water and incorporate more exercise. I feel great and had to note a player who helped this major change:


Did you ever notice how you eat whatever is available? Walk into a conference room with donuts, and suddenly it's Donut Monday. Walk into a meeting with candy, and suddenly it's a Sweet Meeting.

The same is true at home. The contents of your cabinets become your "availability." Don't stock those cabinets with junk from floor to ceiling and complain that it is impossible to lose weight.

I spent a few evenings preparing the proper food choices which made my days easier. Today, I came with carb-lite/carb-free selections like meatloaf and deviled eggs. My belly is full while managing to avoid the Carb Party Box called the vending machines.

I say all this to encourage you to put first things first. The average person who complains of being "too busy" can still find time for a favorite television show or other random nighttime activities. Use part of that time to lovingly prepare foods that nourish instead of harm your body. I'm starting to enjoy the time I spend in the kitchen because I'm able to do other things at the same time... like catch American Idol and stir during the commercials.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Day 10: Skipping Over the Finish Line Like an Energetic Child

This cleanse has been quite a ride. In spite of the deep craving I experienced when I served my sweetie a huge green salad, I didn't wanna stab anybody over a cheeseburger. In fact, I found myself enjoying the act of preparing and serving food. I often sat at the table while others ate, keeping the evening routine with our game of "Hi-Lo."

Once again, I only drank 3 glasses of lemonade and missed my P.M. senna tea. I won't get any awards this time for "Cleanse Perfection," but I feel GREAT and lost 11 pounds. That means in the first week of 20, I lost 11 pounds of my 40 pound goal.

After coming off the cleanse correctly (orange juice, veggie soup, etc), I fall into the church consecration (fruits, veggies, water, prayer) through January 28th. I feel a quiet confidence that I arrived at my season to change my health for the rest of my life. I'm not sickly by far, but I feel the extra pounds, and I know they hold a promise of challenges tomorrow.

From this point forward, I'll post once or twice a week regarding my progress on the Weight Loss Challenge - from what I'm eating to my body measurements.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Days 8 - 9: Feeling Kinda Ooooh La La

In spite of the fact that I still struggle to drink 6 glasses of lemonade per day, I'm feeling like a new woman. I only had 4 glasses on Day 8 and 3 glasses on Day 9. I am down exactly 10 pounds.

I continue to miss my night-time senna tea (I did again on Day 9).

Like usual in the home stretch, my mind wanders to the life (and food) that waits for me after the cleanse. For many, this is the most anxious time because the desire is to continue living a "cleansed" life and to hopefully continue to lose weight.

Typically, people slowly return to crappy eating and pack on the pounds. I am particularly annoyed when they come back with claims that, "The cleanse doesn't work because all the weight comes back when you start to eat again." And yes, if eating means Doritos at midnight, then I guess all of your weight does come back.

So I ask that you consider the success stories that involve proper eating after the cleanse. You will absolutely continue to lose weight and increase your health if you eat right after cleansing. And by golly, I expect to continue my blog posts and become an example of what can happen when you start with a cleanse, and end with proper nutrition and exercise.

More later.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Days 6-7: Hunger on a Serious Strike

Trying to drink the recommended minimum of 6 glass of lemonade per day remains a struggle. This is my 5th cleanse, and this is a first for me. By the end of the day, I'm chugging the last of 4 glasses. The lemonade is designed to provide nutrition and strength - and to also fight hunger. My hunger must be on a serious strike - or vacationing in the Bahamas. I have plenty of energy, I feel great, and there's not a hunger pang in sight. Yet I couldn't drink another glass at the end of the day if I wanted to.

Is the ease of this cleanse all about being a 5-time veteran? Is it all about having a new and supportive sweetheart? Did I mention he's the most supportive man on the planet? How about the universe... lest a distant alien try to top him? Or is the ease about a made-up mind to change my life, lose the extra baggage, and transform my health forever?

Whatever it's about, I'm feeling blessed beyond measure right now.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Day 5: Conquering the Bowling Alley

Day 5 was a particularly long day at work. Organizational issues and unrest left me a little weary as the day came to a close. I called Vic (missed the goal again), and we took the boys to the bowling alley. They bowled a truck load of games while Vic and I played pool.

If you remember from my old posts, the bowling alley is a huge hangout for my family... and our alley has one of the best kitchens in the area. That's were I find myself eating all the wrong stuff - especially pork roll and cheddar cheese.

Darius munched on a chicken cheesesteak. Robbie munched on pizza. And Vic came back with the mother of all umm-umm-good with a patty melt. But guess what? I wasn't moved. I really am conquering the comforts of food one day at a time. Having a love in my life helps, but I also have a more focused vision for a larger goal. I really want to lose these pounds, live a healthy life, and bless my family with many years of my love.

Cleanse points from today:
  • I drank 5 glasses of lemonade. I only had the 5th because I crashed sometime in the evening and needed the energy.
  • I didn't drink enough water, which is a no-no.
  • I skipped my senna tea before bed.
  • I continue to cut my maple syrup by almost half, because anything else is just too sweet. BUT, if I'm gonna keep with the low consumption, I may need the full syrup for the calories.
Weight loss has stalled at 4 pounds, which doesn't bother me one bit. I understand how fluctuations occur during the cleanse, and I'm more concerned about the diet and exercise that will come after the cleanse.

Cleanse Advice Point #238:

Never try to "fast" from a new love. It's like insanity on a stick, dipped in nuts and wrapped in crazy. Ugh.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Day 4: For Once, Food Isn't the Problem

Abstaining from food hasn't been a second thought this cleanse. Seriously. No food fantasies. No wishing I was sitting in front of a 3 course meal. Nothing.

My "wanna quit syndrome" is from a whole other source: Irritating Eliminations.

In spite of practically owning stock in Preparation H and Butt Paste, I'm irritated by whatever toxins are in my eliminations. It happened so early in the cleanse this time, I started wondering how I was gonna make 10 days. I seem to be on an okay schedule (except I keep forgetting to bring my "necessities" to work).

Early this morning (the morning of Day 4), the scale indicated that I'm down 6 pounds. If I keep this rate, and stick to my post-cleanse plans, this will be a wonderful head-start on my 20-week goal (40 pounds) for Weight Loss Challenge 2007.

I learned something else about the cramping associated with the Senna tea. I already knew that cramping could be reduced/eliminated by taking the tea bag from the water sooner. BUT, last night, I also learned not to gulp the tea. In a rush to go to bed, I finished the tea in a few sips. By 1:30am... I was sitting in the bathroom with terrible cramps and having visions of sipping the tea next time.

I may actually do a SWF (salt water flush) this Saturday and Sunday. 90% of the time, I accept Burroughs modification to skip the SWF and have Senna tea instead.

Things on my job are really in turmoil (regarding the government organization that I support). One of our top performers (in terms of security knowledge) announced her departure yesterday. She'll be moving to another organization outside of our building. This announcement was difficult for me in a couple of ways. (1) She's also a personal friend, and having her here has been such a pleasure. (2) Her departure creates a crack in the foundation, making future contract support a little sketchy for the rest of us.

I have needed to update my resume and explore a career change for a loooooooong time now. This upheaval is quite timely, but I'm feeling tentative nonetheless. I needed the kick in the pants, but I feel the low simmer of panic in my belly. I'm happy to be cleansing for spiritual and physical reasons as I face whatever is next.

More later.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Days 2 - 3: Missed Goals and Lost Weight

Well well well. I have never weighed myself during a cleanse. But now, with my handy dandy accurate digital scale that cost too much, I can report on how the cleanse affects weight.

I weighed myself somewhere near the end of Day 1. By the end of Day 3, I was down 5 pounds.

I am having a terribly difficult time drinking the recommended minimum of lemonade. So far, my consumption has been like this:

Day 1: 4 glasses
Day 2: 6 glasses
Day 3: 4 glasses
Day 4: (struggling to get thru the first one)

I am shockingly not hungry. Not even enough to keep up on the lemonade. But ladies and gentlemen, heed this: Your lemonade is for strength and nutrition. Do your best to at least drink 6 glasses per day. I have been supplementing with some water, but not as much as usual. Go figure. It's so true. Every cleanse is different.

To my shock, horror, and sweet surprise, Vic called by early evening on Day 1. He wasn't prepared for what it takes to break all communication for fasting. I'm typing this on Day 4 - and let me just admit - we've been in contact for the first 3 days. No, not just the phone... but also all of Sunday for the kids' bowling tournament, dinner, etc. The new daggone goal is to make it through the next 7 days, giving us a week of fasting from each other. Lord that man makes me sing.

My clothes are fitting great and I feel like 1 million bucks. The Preparation H is in full swing... as I am already completely irritated in the nether regions. My face developed a below-surface pimple that feels more like a bean caught under my skin. I love how facial eruptions during the cleanse are followed by the most wonderful skin you've probably ever seen on your own face.

I soaked in Epsom salts yesterday. The reason for doing this totally escapes me right now, but it felt good. Like butter. ummm

More later...

Friday, January 05, 2007

Master Cleanse 2007 Day 1: Grumpy For Totally Different Reasons

If you've been to this blog lately, you know I start my Weight Loss Challenge 2007 today. My goal is to lose 40 pounds by May 25th, plus an additional 20 or so later in the year.

I'm kicking-off the weight loss challenge (sponsored by me and the other moderators at the Yahoo group "mastercleanse") with a 10-day master cleanse. You would think my 5th cleanse would be a breeze, but alas, I'm fasting also from something new in my life... my man. When fasting for spiritual reasons, the goal is to kill "fleshly" desires so focus can remain on prayer and hearing from God.

Grumpiness is a normal part of fasting. It is one of the most common symptoms reported by the members of our group. But today, on Day 1, I am experiencing a whole new "grump."

Why?? Because a romantic relationship interferes with fasting, so I had to put Vic in a box until the fast is over. Because he's the sweetheart he is, he agreed to keep from contact and spend his time giving up bad habits and praying for us. In spite of the sincerity of the gesture, I miss the one whose voice has become daily music in my ears.

Stay tuned for daily updates about the cleanse/fast and Weight Loss Challenge. True to my form, you'll get the candid truth about how my days are going, plus tips and tricks to help you cleanse with success.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

It's On Like Redenbacher Popcorn

Weight Loss Challenge 2007 Begins!

If you have a serious plan for weight loss in 2007 and you're not opposed to fasting/cleansing as a kick start, then you should really make a run over to the Yahoo group: mastercleanse.

Challenge participants are signing-up and their entry forms are available here in PDF form. Each file name shows the Age/Sex/Location of the participants so you can buddy-up with people of similar age or circumstance.

My weight loss goal for the 20-week challenge is 40 pounds. My actual goal is for a total of 60 to 80, and I'll address the balance after the 20-weeks are over on May 25th.

My weight loss challenge is structured as follows (with some overlap):
  • Fri Jan 5 thru Sun Jan 14: I will begin with a 10 day Master Cleanse, according to Stanley Burroughs' book, "The Master Cleanser."
    Goals: Reset bad habits, rejuvenate relationship with God thru daily prayer and reading, abstain from contact with new beau to seek clarity regarding the relationship, prayerfully decide which ministries to give my time in church.
    Secondary Goal: To not murder the first person who offers me a bagel (hehe)
  • Mon Jan 8 thru Sun Jan 28: I will continue with the 21-day consecration with Grace Family Church (consisting of daily prayer along with a diet of fruits, veggies, and water). Daily prayer will focus on specific topics, which I am happy to post here by Monday.
    Goals: Complete 21 days of focused prayer, draft my complete personal plan for 2007, refresh power, confidence, peace & joy, achieve daily success with Weight Loss Challenge.
  • Fri Jan 5 thru Fri May 25: Weight Loss Challenge 2007
    Goals: Increase strength & endurance and lose 40 pounds.
My reward for success at the end of the Challenge is a new hairstyle, an expensive outfit, and an out-of-town date with my ultra-supportive beau.

It's on like popcorn - so let's get it poppin!