As I mentioned last night in my celebratory splurge post, my 21-day Crazy Sexy Diet is finally over! Over the past three weeks, I've avoided sugar, coffee, alcohol, gluten, processed food, and fried things in favor of alkaline juices, salads, and whole foods dishes made with beans and grains.
I feel clean! And light! And in fact, I am a little lighter since I lost the five pounds I'd packed on in the past five months of not running (because of my never-ending stress fracture). My jeans fit again, and that perhaps, is the best outcome I could hope for. No one wants to go up a jean size.
I also slept better than ever on the cleanse. I've never really had sleep problems. I'm the kind of girl who falls asleep as soon as her head hits the pillow. But when my diet isn't clean, I tend to be more restless and wake up more times throughout the night. And even though I fall right back to sleep, restless nights just don't result in the same rested feeling the next day.
And it's probably TMI, but I've been pooping like a champ all month!
I want keep feeling great, and I want to keep off those pounds, especially since I won't be running for at least another month. Doctor's orders. Yoga and hula-hopping just don't burn the calories that running does. So here's my plan, and it's reflected in what I ate today on the first full day off of my cleanse.
I will start each morning with a fresh veggie juice or a smoothie. Juicing was my favorite part of the cleanse. I downloaded Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Juices & Succulent Smoothies e-book for ideas. This morning, I made the Lime Shine Juice from that book (green apple, celery, romaine, cucumber, and lime).
But unlike on the cleanse, I won't be having just juice in the mornings. I missed my sit-down breakfast. So I'll have a light breakfast immediately after my juice. This morning, that was Whole Wheat Bagel Thins with Tofutti Cream Cheese and my homemade Fig Preserves.
One commenter, Pam, asked how I felt after bringing gluten back into my diet. The answer? Great! I've done a number of these gluten-free cleanses over the past several Januarys, and through trial and error, I know I don't have a gluten sensitivity at all. Thank goddess.
I'll also be bringing roasted nuts back into my life. Only raw nuts were allowed on the cleanse (something about the oils in roasted nuts being rancid?). But the research on raw versus roasted is still conflicting, and I like 'em both. Today, I had Wonderful brand Sweet Chili Pistachios as a morning snack and again as an afternoon snack.
I'm going to try to stick to whole foods most of the time and save plant meats for splurges (don't worry, I'll splurge a few times each week!). And I want to have salads or cooked greens with meals as often as possible. Lunch today was Chili Sin Carne from Kitchen Divided (leftover in my freezer), which has all kinds of veggies, beans, brown rice, vegan burger, and even cashews!
And I had a Salad with Cherry Tomatoes, Carrots, and Dijon Vinaigrette on the side.
When I do eat unhealthy stuff, I'm going to try my best to practice portion control. And then I can have a much bigger portion of a healthy side. For example, my friend Shara gave me some leftover Almond Tofu from Pho Binh the other day when I was still on the cleanse, and I saved it to eat today. There was almost an entire order of this rich dish of fried tofu, savory brown sauce, almonds, and green peppers in the takeout box she gave me. And there was also leftover steamed white rice.
Normally, I'd eat at least half of what she gave me in one sitting, and I'd use that white rice. Instead, I split the takeout into three servings of just a little over 1/2 cup of the tofu dish. I made some brown rice and tossed that white rice in the trash. And then I had a small portion of Almond Tofu and Brown Rice for dinner. And I have leftovers for two more days.
On the side, I had a healthy bowl of Miso Soup with Nori, Carrots, and Onions.
So there's an idea of how I'll change my eating habits, post-cleanse. Of course, I won't have fried tofu everyday. But when I do, I'll make sure the rest of the day is super healthy. As for dessert, I skipped it today since I had a massive cupcake last night. I'm going to try to limit big desserts to once or twice a week, and I may have a bite of chocolate or a small candy a couple times each week on days when I don't eat the big stuff.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, I've brought coffee back into my life! I enjoyed three espresso-sized cups of Turkish Coffee (my drug of choice) this morning as I got ready for work. I missed coffee so much!