The Juice Fast Diaries: How I Made It Through Five Days

{My diet for the next five days.}

Usually, I do a makeup-related post on Mondays. Today, I’m doing a getting-pretty-on-the-inside post. This past week, I did a five-day juice cleanse at The Standard. Here’s why: They asked me to. And I’ve done it before, so I knew what to expect.

Before I get into my whole experience, I want to clear a few things up. Mainly, that juice fasts aren’t a fad diet (though in recent months, it seems that’s what they’ve become). You don’t go on a juice fast to lose weight. But you will lose weight, about a pound a day. It is, however, the kind of weight you will put back on just as soon as you start eating again, because it’s impossible to maintain that loss, as you are getting by on the bare minimum your body needs to function. So why do a juice fast and put yourself through the agony of not eating for five days? Because it’s a detox, a chance to give your digestive system a hard reset, a break from breaking down all the processed foods and junk-a-lunk you take in on a regular basis. Because it gives you a new perspective and propels you to continue to do healthy things for your body once you and your juice part ways. Because of the insights and moments of clarity you’ll experience while your body isn’t pre-occupied breaking down food. Because it’s a game of will power and mind over matter, a test of inner strength. That’s what it’s all about. And for me it went a little something like this:

{Juice fasting with friends makes it easier to get through, think of it as juice fasters anonymous. I made it along with these clowns.} 

Day 1: I meet the five bottles of juice I will consume daily for the next five days. In addition to these juices, I get tea, Smartwater and VitaCoco. That’s it. I’m going chew-less for a week. Juice 1: Cantaloupe and ginger. Juice 2: Carrot, tomato and red pepper. Juice 3: Pineapple and wheatgrass. Juice 4: Tons of green stuff, like kale, collard greens, spinach. Juice 5: Citrus mixed with cayenne pepper and maple syrup. 

I’m telling myself: I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.

Moments of weakness: Did you know there is a food commercial on TV just about every eight minutes? Would I mug someone for a toaster pastry, just like the one I’ve seen on Lifetime every times there’s a damn commercial break? Yup. And I’d kick you for a Twizzler, too. But I’m really not that hungry. Things just sound good. Sadly, none of them seem to be juice 1, 2 or 4. Three and 5 are totes decent though. 

Revelations: If I just go to bed I won’t think about the leftover ice cream cake from Father’s Day in the fridge. 

Day 1 also culminates with an astrology reading from Lori Bell at The Standard. They set up little things for you to participate in so you can escape your house, you know, where your fridge lives. I got a whole spiel about how my sun sign is Aries, my moon sign is Libra and my rising sign is also Libra. And I’m going to be doing a lot of traveling, according to my ninth house. Sweet. 

{My last meal. At Yardbird. Hello, carbs.}

Day 2: Is a bitch. I’m not going to lie. This last meal above seems like the best idea ever right about now. I’m crabby. And these juices are not cutting it. But I know if I can get past day 2 that it’s smoothing sailing. I’m also substituting juice 1 for fresh squeezed OJ in the same amount as juice 1 because I can no longer hack the cantaloupe and ginger combo. They are two flavors I hate. Combined, they are my kryptonite. 

I’m telling myself: If I just bury myself in work, I won’t think about food. And if I mix the 5th juice of the day with water to make it last longer and sip it all day long, the cayenne will kill my appetite.  

Moments of weakness: How in the hell is this damn toaster strudel commercial STILL on TV? It’s taunting me. I don’t even like icing, but I would just about body slam you for just one lick. 

Revelations: I should just stop watching TV. 

Day 3:  Welcome to the hump. At some point today, you’re going to break on through to the other side. For some people it’s early in the day. For other’s, like me, it doesn’t happen until the witching hour, which means day 3 is a bitch’s sister. It went like this for me last juice fast, too. Today, I just toss out juice 1. More fresh OJ. Ssshh, don’t tell The Standard.

I’m telling myself: If I can just get through today, I’m going to have Zen-hippie revelations and inner peace. I’ve made it through three whole days with nothing but water, juice and tea. Why give up now? Some gum or Altoids would be nice though. 

Moments of weakness: I get called in on a job that requires me to go to the mall. The mall, where my 4-year-old insists we go to the food court to watch her eat. And the store I have to pick things up at is right next to a candy shop. Every time I think about the candy shop, I can taste the sweet deliciousness of sugar crystals coating a gummy candy that will delightfully stick to my molars, leaving a lingering flavor parading around my taste buds. Dear God, help. My trip to the mall takes way longer than intended, and I leave the house juice-less. Duh. I’m staring to get edgy and freaked out because I’m trapped in the middle of mall culture with loud music, loud people, a hungry kid and a food court. I break down and have an unauthorized fresh-squeezed juice from Pasha’s because I can’t take it anymore. 

Revelations: Earlier in the day I go to Walgreen’s to return shampoo (don’t ask). While I am at the register, I am accosted by candy bars, donuts, chips, gum, energy drinks, what have you. Wow, food, a term I’m using loosely here, is everywhere. And most of the time we aren’t eating it because we’re hungry. We’re eating it because we can’t avoid it. Mental note: When I’m back on food, I need to ask myself before I snack: “Do I need this right now or does it just sound good?” 

Day 4: I didn’t get a lot of sleep on day 3, so I wake up to day 4 with a headache and a workload that leads me from one side of Miami-Dade to the other, with yet another trip to the mall and a saunter past the candy store, again. But surprisingly, I’m OK. I skip over juices 1 and 2 and go straight for 5 mixed with water. And the headache finally goes away around noon. 

I’m telling myself: I’m almost done. I got this. 

Moments of weakness: Not even the candy store phases me today. And, later, we have guests over to watch the Heat game. They eat pretzels and chocolate right next to me while I sip my five mixed with water. I’m golden.

Revelations: I like the way cayenne burns the inside of my mouth. I’ve completely forgotten there’s a ice cream cake in my freezer. 

Day 5: I made it! I’m wrapping this up at 5 p.m. But until then, I go to the hamam at The Standard and enjoy a body scrub, the cold shower and the steam room. Then I just chill with members from Juice Fasters anon. 

I’m telling myself: Food, what’s that? I feel like I could go another two days, but I’m not.

Moments of weakness: I’m feeling really thin and should probably eat something now (around noon), but I’ve made it this far, I can get through another few hours. I pick up dinner at 4 and called hubby and tell him not to be one minute past 5 because I’m not waiting to bust into my dinner. 

Revelations: I said I was going to do it and I did. My reward, I feel amazing, clean, clear and focused. I’m actually going to get the recipe for the wheatgrass and cayenne juices, so I can integrate them into my daily life. But yeah, I’m looking forward to eating again. As for that ice cream cake in my freezer, I don’t even want it. What nutritional value does it have? None. I’ve just done something good for my body. I think I’ll try and keep it that way for as long as I can. 

{Breakin’ the fast with Here Comes the Sun steamed brown rice, soy cheese and sun sauce. Something lighter, like soup or salad, is recommended. And after I ate five bites of this, I wished that was the direction I would have taken. What can I say, eyes were bigger than stomach. But I survived.}