How I Felt On A 3-Day Juice Cleanse
Ok so here's the thing: I generally hate cleanses. But it was the week of my wedding, and I got my period, and I was all red and blotchy and just generally feeling MEH. I really wanted to have a lot of energy and feel great, and just have that bridal glow on the wedding day, so I decided to go big or go home. I've done a juice cleanse two times before in the past and when I came out of it, I felt energized, re-charged, and well rested. I want to be clear that this juice cleanse was not done for any weight loss purposes, especially because (in my opinion) that is not effective and does not last. However, I do support doing a cleanse to feel more rested and to help your skin, if you struggle with hormonal acne like I often do.
So okay DAY ONE I was working from home. I woke up in the morning and walked over to my local Pure Green, where they have an amazing 6 for $36 deal. You can pick any juices you want, but be sure to take at least 2-3 green ones. I also got a beet juice, an apple/ginger/lemon blend, and an activated charcoal lemonade. Activated charcoal is said to help clear the liver. I felt fine for most of the day, with my worst hunger pangs around 2:30 PM. You're supposed to drink a juice every 2.5 hours, with plenty of water in between. After that afternoon period, I found the rest of the day fairly simple until Brandon reheated one of my favorite foods for dinner: chicken cutlets. And then he kissed me with cutlet breath. And I was like are you fU(@*)#@ing kidding me? Don't do that to me. Just don't.
on DAY TWO I woke up, and my skin was already much better. It was brighter, less inflamed, and more calm. This put a huge smile on my face, and I walked out the door to work (makeup-free) feeling more confident. My optimism was quickly put to the test when I arrived to work, at the amazing Food52 office. It happened to be an editorial photoshoot day, so there was a plethora of leftovers available in the team kitchen that I was salivating over. Roasted squash (YUM), salt & straw ice cream (kill me now), baked apples. It was nearly impossible to exist amidst the smells of rosemary and garlic roasted chicken. I know, I know, these are (not) normal office problems. I kept my mind on the prize though and somehow survived until I bolted at 6pm. At that point, I came home and got to work packing things for the wedding weekend. Before I knew it, it was 9PM. I had another green juice and passed the F out.
DAY THREE was surprisingly easy for me. I was honestly planning on seeing how I felt and maybe quitting early. However, as I ran out the door, I grabbed the last green juice in the fridge and headed uptown. I had a very long to-do list of beautifying procedures to take care of, and I didn't feel hungry. I got a second green juice at a bodega on my walk to pick up my wedding dress. Then I got a pedicure, and drank an herbal tea. At this point, as I scrolled through Instagram, I was literally salivating at a photo of anything you can chew. I bought myself an active charcoal lemonade (#millennial) and went home to find a surprise Bloomingdales package in the mail. That helped me temporarily forget about my hunger levels. I was pretty much 100000% mentally done and ready for real food, but it was 5:30 PM and I was ALMOST finished. I felt like breaking my cleanse right before 10 hours of beauty sleep would be silly. Or sane. Depending on how you look at it.
THE AFTERMATH Perhaps it was because my mind was just elsewhere the last few days before my wedding, but the cleanse was not impossible. I definitely had intense moments of weakness, and anytime I smelled food I was hangry/jealous/moody. However, after just 1 day I noticed that my skin looked brighter and my face was less puffy. I slept really well and my energy levels were not low until day 3. My cleanse also happened to coincide with my period, and I noticed that I didn't carry any of the bloat I usually do during that time of the month. I didn't weigh myself before or after because 1) I don't own a scale and 2) don't care about how much I weigh. I care about how I feel, and I felt really good after the cleanse. I felt accomplished, for sticking through it. I felt clear-headed, ready to take on the weekend, and just overall very happy. Would I ever do it again? I'm not sure. I love food so freaking much that missing even one meal gives me intense FOMO. So definitely not anytime soon.
I'll leave you with a few tips, in case you want to try out a cleanse:
- Limit who you tell. I didn't tell my mom, because as much as I love her, I knew she would push me to give up early. I really only told Brandon and my best friend... mainly for safety reasons and for a bit of moral support.
- Don't spend 72 hours complaining. This is something that requires mental strength to do, and if you constantly talk about how shitty it is, it will be that much more challenging. This is also why I didn't tell people, so that I wouldn't have the opportunity to whine to 10 different people.
- Use this as a time to slow down. Don't make social plans or try to go out for happy hour when you're cleansing. Catch up on sleep, netflix, a book, just try to take it easy.
- Don't do intense workouts that will make you sweat a lot. Stick with yoga/walking/tai chi/low-intensity stuff.
- If you feel like you're not going to make it, eat a green apple or some raw vegetables or chicken broth and see if you can manage to get back on the horse after that. Don't give up and go eat buffalo chicken wings right away. You're stronger than you think.
- You got this!!! Have faith in yourself and give yourself positive encouragement throughout the day. I literally would look in the mirror and say "you can do this!" several times.
Please feel free to let me know if you have any specific questions or thoughts about my experience in the comments below!