21 DSD: Prepare to Succeed

Good morning!

Now that I’ve completed the 21 Day Sugar Detox, I want to share what worked for me and help me succeed in banishing my sugar habit!  Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a walk in the park, it can actually seem a bit daunting at first (especially before you start), but if you’re in it for the right reasons, you’ll soon find it’s not as bad as you think.

**Disclaimer: this is what worked for me and these are just suggestions.  I am not a registered dietitian, nutritionist or a physician, please consult a professional for a personalized plan for you or to make sure the 21DSD is right for you***

1.  Commit.  Ask yourself why you want to do this detox and make sure it’s for the right reasons (not just to lose a quick few pounds).  Also, do a kitchen purge.  This is a lifestyle change, the whole point is to get rid of your bad sugar habits, so why keep anything like candies, potato chips and other overly processed foods.  You don’t want to be tempted to cheat or go back to your old ways after the detox.  Note:  I did keep things I planned on reintroducing like frozen fruit, pasta and oats.

2.  Have a good support team.  Tyler and my blog readers (you guys!!) were mine.  Tyler did the detox with me because like me, he has a sweet tooth as well.  You guys helped keep me accountable, and when I first announced I was doing this I got some really supportive comments came in and I can’t thank you enough for that!  Even if you don’t have someone to do it with, enlist one of your friends to keep you on track–bonus points if that friend also wants to help you cook!

3.  Choose a time when you aren’t traveling/have weddings or parties to go.  I chose three weeks in July that I had no travel or weekend plans (except a Saturday shift for work).  Remember, you want to make sure you have time to prepare foods and that you  don’t have any temptations.  I mean who wants to go to a birthday party and not be able to have cake?  Not me.  Also keep your training schedule in mind.  The first two weeks derailed my training schedule because I was so tired.  By the third I was getting back into it.  The book even warns you to NOT do this while training for an event like a marathon.

5.  Prep as much as you can, but expect to log a little more time in the kitchen (especially if you eat a lot of convenience foods).  I made what I could in advance, like beans in the slow cooker and meatloaf.  Otherwise Sundays were spent int he kitchen prepping for the week, and I still had to make some parts of dinner during the week.  Make doubles of recipes you like to make food stretch the entire week for lunch or dinner.

6.  Venture out of your food comfort zone and experiment!   The book has some great recipes, but I took to Pinterest for inspiration.  I also made up my own recipes using foods on the “yes” list, like my sweet potato nachos or quinoa and summer veggies.  For a quick lunch, I usually have my tuna with a little bit of Miracle Whip, dried dill and dill pickle relish.  Since I couldn’t have any of that (except the dill) and had some leftover guacamole, I mixed the tuna, guac and dill together and was pleasantly surprise about how tasty it was.

**BONUS**

Don’t just stop the detox program without a plan for future eating.  Have a post-detox plan.  You HAVE to, especially if you plan to reintroduce “no” foods from the detox.  I meal-planned for the rest of July and entire month of August.  Also, have a plan for outings.  Both Tyler’s and my birthdays are in August, and we plan to eat out for both, so the meal plans for those weeks are a little stricter than they would normally be.

And there you have it, a few tips to help you succeed during the 21 Day Sugar Detox.

Have a great day!

 

 

WIAW: Making Healthier Choices

Good morning!

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I’m linking up with Jenn from Peas and Crayons for another edition of What I Ate Wednesday.  This week, my theme is making healthier choices.

The 21DSD ended for me on Monday, and though it’s only been a mere two days since then, I’ve definitely seen a difference in what I choose to eat, keeping in mind that food is fuel.

I had my first test on Tuesday, when Tyler and I headed to Richmond for the day and had lunch out at a local coffee shop.  There were plenty of things on the menu I would’ve eaten (baked goods, in particular ) but instead I chose and enjoyed the a their take on a Cuban sandwich (I LOVE sandwiches).

I’ve also changed up what I put in my smoothie.  Instead of equal parts soy milk and juice, I’m using mix of Greek yogurt, coconut water and a small amount of juice.  The Greek yogurt provides more protein than soy milk, keeping me fuller longer.  This will be especially important when I go to back to work full-time in a couple of weeks in a busy office with little time for snacks before lunch!

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I have found that I do need a little something before my morning workouts.  I found a recipe on Runner’s World for Blueberry Breakfast Bars, which are filled with berries and whole grains.  Perfect for pre-run or -cycle.

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Healthy copycat Chick Fil A nuggets. I found this recipe on Pinterest and it turned into dinner for this week!  Yes they are still fried, but they are made with whole wheat flour and served with a side of broccoli, not waffle fries ;)

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Speaking of dinner, I have enjoyed finding vegetable replacements for spaghetti noodles.  Since it’s summer and it’s damn hard to find a spaghetti squash, I’ve taken to using zucchini from the farmer’s market. So good.  #youwontmisspasta.

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Of course for snacks I continue to eat carrots and almond butter, hard-boiled eggs and apples.

And finally, to celebrate the conclusion of the 21DSD, Tyler and I indulged in an almond butter cup I found at The Fresh Market.  It was so tasty and only had SIX ingredients in it.  Sorry, Reeses, I may have found your replacement!

What healthier choices have you been making lately?

 

Track Your Every{fitness}Move, A Review of EveryMove

As a Sweat Pink Ambassador I was given the opportunity to review the free fitness tracking app EveryMove.  My favorite way to sweat these days is running and cycling, and this is a great app to track all of my workouts in one place!

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First, a little bit about EveryMove.  EveryMove was founded by a Russell Benaroya and Marcelo Calbucci with a goal of “getting 10 million people moving in 10 years.”  You can meet the rest of the team here.  EveryMove is all about giving you the freedom to track you workouts with almost whatever device/app you already use and syncs it to the EveryMove app to keep a record of all of your workouts in one place.  And it doesn’t just count running, cycling or swimming, it gives you over 100 workout options to choose from.

The EveryMove app available for iPhone and Android that syncs with another application (Garmin, Fitbit, Nike+, etc..) to log all of your workouts in one place.

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It gets even better.  Everymove’s goal is to get people moving, and what better way do that than to offer real-life rewards (not just a virtual high-five or badge) for working out?   You can choose a reward to work  toward and then get moving to earn points!

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For each workout logged you receive a certain amount of points based on how long you were active, obviously the longer you workout the more points you receive.  After accumulating a certain amount, you can redeem your reward.  And it’s not a “one reward fits all” kind of thing, you actually get to choose what you want to work for.

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I’ve already earned my first reward, a discount coupon for the food delivery company called HelloFresh!

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I think the EveryMove app adds some fun to working out and serves as another great form of motivation by bringing athletes together to provide encouragement and support for one another.

So check out EveryMove and get moving!

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/EveryMove

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EveryMove

 

Which fitness apps do you use?

 

 

This Week’s Workouts: 7/28 -8/3

Since I use this blog as a workout log, I need to make sure I actually get the workouts in.  Therefore, each Monday I’m going to post my weekly workout schedule in order to keep accountable for getting them done.  My weekly workout recap will be posted on Sunday.

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I’m kind of in an “in-between” phase where I’m training for a triathlon and also wanting to get my running back to where I want it to be in preparation for increasing my distance this fall/winter.  This week will once again be focused more on the run, with a total of four runs, but also two-three days of swim workouts (weather permitting) and one cycling workout.  I am still having trouble fitting strength training in but my goal for this week is two strength workouts, plus get some core work in.

Here is my plan for this week:

Monday:  run 20 minutes, swim 800 yds

Tuesday:  run 20 minutes, strength/core

Wednesday:  yoga/rest day

Thursday: run 25 minutes, strength/core

Friday:  swim 800 yds, yoga

Saturday: cycle 15 miles

Sunday:  run 30 minutes, core, swim 800 yds

I’ll check back in on Sunday and let you know how I did.

Do you like to plan your workouts or do you just go with it?

 

21DSD: Week 3/Final Recap

I did it!

I successfully competed the 21 Day Sugar Detox!

Here is a quick look at week three:

1.  Food was pretty much repeats of the previous two weeks.  Meatloaf, eggs, sweet potatoes, cheese, greens…etc.  My meals were boring, but they kept me full and not always wanting to snack.  One new meal I tried was using zucchini for noodles, it’s a great seasonal alternative to spaghetti squash (which is so difficult to find right now!).

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2. Cravings for sweet treats have pretty much disappeared.  I think I have developed a new appreciation for what a dessert is, and it’s not a handful of Hershey Kisses after lunch everyday or a weekly milkshake from Chick Fil A.  My days of daily sweet treats are over.  I’m also able to have and enjoy a coffee with just milk, without having to add any flavoring, sugars or chocolate.

3.  My skin. It is the clearest/smoothest it’s been since I can remember.  And it’s not as oily as it was when I first started either.

4.  During week three I finally got back to working out regularly!  I ran (albeit short runs) four times this week and cycled once. Unfortunately the weather kept me from swimming.  I had a really great ride on Saturday :)

5.  Sleep, sweet sleep.  I’m sleeping even better and waking up around the same time every without an alarm.

So the above pretty much sums up my takeaways from the 21DSD.  I am looking forward to adding fruit back into my regular diet, as well as some whole grains.  I do plan to add sweeteners like honey and maple syrup back in, in moderation, of course. I did the 21DSD to get away from the need to snack on junk daily and the craving of something sweet after every meal and I was successful.

Does this mean I’ll never have another cupcake?  Of course not.  I just know to indulge in better quality treats that won’t leaving me wanting more.

One thing I didn’t do this for was weight loss.  I knew I would lose some weight and that this would eventually aid my weight loss efforts in the long-term by getting rid of the junk, but it wasn’t my focus.  That being said, I did lose weight.  In fact, a pretty significant amount (for me in just 21 days).  I lost 8.4 lbs and 2 inches around my lower waist (measured around my belly button).  Shows how much complete garbage I had been fueling my body with.  I didn’t take an official “before” picture, but I did have a picture of me at Fitbloggin’ (in June) and I took a picture of myself this morning in the same outfit–pardon the “I just woke up” look.

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I can honestly say I would highly recommend this program to anyone wanting to decrease their sugar intake (of course first check with your medical professional to see if this is right for you to do!).  Yes, it’s extreme (no fruit except lemons, limes, green apples and bananas) and it does take some effort, but it’s so worth it in the end and it’s only a short 21 days.  I will post a keys to my success blog post this week.

Now it’s breakfast time:  I finally get to reintroduce smoothies back into my life, but in addition to the smoothie I’ll add a hard-boiled egg for protein, where as before I would just have the smoothie and be hungry by 10am.  I do plan to keep you  informed about what I’m eating, how things are going/what works for me so keep a look out for the weekly What I Ate Wednesday link up post.

Has anyone else had a good experience with the 21DSD or similar program?