It being a new month and Friday I know many of you are setting new fitness goals as well as I. Recently I completed a 3 day smoothie fast that went pretty well but still had it pitfalls. Now that it’s over I’ve can now effectively start a new one to better results and the ability to help others tempted to give their body goals a jumpstart.
A few fatties/ weight-loss junkies go on a juice or smoothie fast in the delusional quick fix hopes that it will dissolve their weight and health problems. Juicing is new diet trend that is often misunderstood and can be costly to no noticeable physical results. Labeling marketing tricks such as “lose 5 pounds in 5 days!” and “get glowing skin!” are usually used for these detox and fasting programs, leading you to jump too quickly into a fast without prior preparation. This is not a good idea to not have sufficient knowledge and managed expectations to ensure you have a safe, enjoyable and beneficial fasting experience. Quite frankly, if you’re a cheapo like me you know fruits & veggies are too expensive to make it a one-time event only to crap it up when you don’t see the changes you were promised.
Instead, I am here to usher you properly along your skinny journey into the thin lifestyle. There are a few things you need to keep in mind if you want to reap the benefits of embarking on a juice or smoothie fast. For starts, it’s best to think of juicing as a jump to better health and eating clean rather a weight-loss program.
I know for a fact that a fast of any kind all by itself is a bit of a challenge and when used intelligently and carefully, juice/smoothie fasting for 2-3 days can be a beautiful, nourishing tool to improve your health, energy, clarity and sense of connection to self.
How to properly juice/smoothie fast? Well before you try juice fasting, you need to understand how it works, when to use it and what not to do.
Start with breaking down the overall components that go into preparation for a fast.
•Start & End Date.
•What to Juice.
•After the Fast.
Things to remember about juicing/smoothie fasting can include headaches, hypoglycemia, and bad breath. Oh, and remaining husky. Also, you can use a juicer, food processor or blender. I prefer a food processor because I get to use the entire veggie or fruit.
Goal: When starting juice/smoothies fast you need to already have a realistic manageable and achievable goal. For example, it could be simply to detox, kick off a new workout and eating routine or to clear your mind to find peace and clarity. Though, losing a few lbs may be stellar that shouldn’t be the goal because you will only be setting yourself up for failure if that doesn’t happen. In turn you go back to eating horribly, leading you back to end of the shopping racks. Your goal should be your reminder and motivation to continue when you come across those delicious calories laden temptations. Even the amount of days you plan on doing it should be a part of your goal.
Budget: As I mention earlier, this crap is expensive! If you’re going to do this you don’t want to waste your money on cheating, not using things you’ve bought or quitting. It’s best to come up with an amount of money you want to spend based on the usage and days on the fast. This will allow you to only purchase things you will consume and not over spend or buy too much of something. Remember the less money you spend on things you don’t need you can spend on other important things, like shoes.
Start & End Date: Is important to your budget and goal, this should be decided based upon commitment level, daily schedule and start of new workout or eating program. At your start date you should be mentally prepared and rid your house & work space of any deterrence. Map out your feeding times, prepare/arrange your fruits and veggies and make time for rest. The end date is your driving force as well as will dictate how you reenter the world of solid foods. The last thing you want to do is to become savagely fixed on your last day that you celebrate by scoffing down a burger or candy. These dates are vital to your success.
What to Juice: You can juice or blend almost anything you can eat raw. Vegetables are best, especially carrots, cucumbers, beets, broccoli, wheat grass, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini squash, spinach, sprouts, celery and ginger, cabbage. Freshly made raw apple, grapes, citruses, pears, papayas avocados and mangos and melon juices may be juice or blend also. I definitely wouldn’t suggest to juice or blend potatoes, eggplant or Lima beans (if that’s your thing.) I would suggest buying organic but if that’s too pricey, it is wise to peel vegetables that have been sprayed or waxed, such as cucumbers. Being that commonly all the nutrients are in the peel you can give them a good scrubbing with a nylon-bristle vegetable brush while rinsing under tap water. Fresh juice contains a great amount of raw food enzymes and vitamins, many of which are easily lost as the juice sits. So don’t let it sit drink up, quick! A rule I stick to is 20% fruits and 80% veggies. If your goal is to lose weight you should stick to that rule. Fruits contain a lot of sugar, it’s best to keep those for your morning drinks for the energy boost. Many will say eat your fruit and juice your veggies because that’s where all the nutrients are.
Recipes & Shopping: This goes without saying but here goes… These two a synonymous with helping you maintaining your goal, stick to scheduling and keep you on budget. I used Pinterest to look up recipes for my fast. I first multiplied my amount of daily meals by the days on fast then found recipes for each meal then created my shopping list upon the recipes.
Another thing, in creating recipes you will learn what juices/smoothies are best for you.
Carrot juice is very high in vitamin A. The vitamin A in carrots is actually “provitamin A” or carotene.
Celery juice is very tasty, but a bit high in sodium. Use small amounts of this juice to flavor the others.
Cucumber juice is remarkably tasty. It tastes rather different than a cucumber itself. Peel cucumbers before juicing.
Sprouts will make an especially nutritious juice with a taste that is well worth acquiring. This “green drink” is loaded with minerals and chlorophyll.
Zucchini & squash juiced up tastes better than you’d ever imagine. It also keeps the juicer from clogging on higher-fiber vegetables.
Beet juice is a blood-builder.
Cabbage has successfully been used for a variety of gastrointestinal illnesses. Colitis, spastic colon, indigestion, chronic constipation, certain forms of rectal bleeding and other conditions seem to respond well to the nutrients in cabbage juice.
Tomatoes red, ripened fruit is good for you.
Green apples add sweetness to any juice, and berries add a whole new indulgent flavor. Use lemons and limes in everything if you like! They are brilliant alkalizers and extremely low in sugar.
Scheduling: This came as shock to me since I thought since I wouldn’t be cooking it would take me less time to wait to eat. However, there were days I was deterred from blending because it took so much prep time. Now it takes me 10 minutes to prep, juice, drink, and clean my blend (well I have a single serve along with a huge processor). What helped me was taking some time to organize my fridge. Another time saver was pre prepping my meals. I suggest getting gallon size freezer bags and prepping your meals ahead of time and a huge bag of ice. That way all you have to do is grab the bag and everything in it is ready to process. Make a list or of time to blend that you can stick to regulate your digestive system and blood sugar and this will help keep you from being hungry.
After The Fast: Start back on solid food with oats, grains and salads, even stir-fry. I would even suggest continue juicing just but replace one juice a day with a well cooked clean solid meal. Following all this will drive your focus and clear your mind and body. Track your progress; reevaluate where you were mentally and physically before the fast and where you are after. I will also recommended you take up yoga during the fast, start a book or project as well as set aside 10-30 minutes a day to yourself to just zone out and mentally reorganize your life.