Today (January 17, 2012) we embark on our 30 day challenge of drinking only Green Smoothies. We have been incorporating them in our diet for several months now. I was first introduced to Green Smoothies by the Green Smoothie Girl herself.
I heard about Robyn Openshaw from a friend of mine who had put a link to her website on a page he was using to refer his Blendtec clients to. He’s a representative for Blendtec and created a little webpage to send his customers to that would direct them to other information on eating healthy. Through a link on that page, I was introduced to The Green Smoothie Girl and found out that she gives seminars where she tells her story and journey of why she drinks Green Smoothies and the difference it has made in her life. We attended one of these seminars and immediately began drinking them. We’ve tried to make it a daily habit to drink one Green Smoothie a day since then. It hasn’t always happened…. but we’ve done pretty good with it.
I’ve seen and read stories, like the one in the movie documentary called, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead by Joe Cross…. where ‘green smoothies’ or juicing changed a mans life and health dramatically. Since watching that, I’ve wanted to give this 30 day challenge a try. Though the man in the movie does it for 60 days….. I figured 30 days is a pretty good commitment.
So… here we go….. we’re giving it a try! You’re welcome to join us!
I will try to keep you posted as to how the progress goes…. I think many of you will be very interested in the outcome and the journey! So…. stay tuned! Or, better yet…. join myself and my husband on this journey and share your experience with us on my Facebook page!
P.S. (February 18, 2012) I decided to bring my posts about this experience in the body of this page so it was easier to read about my thoughts. So here are the occasional updates I made. They are listed by the number of the ‘day’ of the challenge.
DAY 3 of D.O.G.S.– Not going to lie….. it’s not easy! I’m not sure it’s filling me up enough to not have hunger pains. I may be rethinking this and only doing 10 days of just Green Smoothies and start adding some other more substantial things in after that. I’m a little worried about the next couple of days. Going to Genius Bootcamp and may be doing a little physical stuff. I may have to add a few solid fruits and some nuts to get me through!
My husband’s weight was down 6 lbs this morning. I, on the other hand, can’t really tell for sure where I’m at. I was technically 2 tenths higher than Monday morning….. but that wasn’t really the day we started. Hopefully remembering to weigh in tomorrow will give me some encouragement. (Not that weight loss is the only thing I’m hoping for….. but I AM hoping for some!)
DAY 4 of D.O.G.S.– Today was much easier. More so than I thought it would be. Perhaps it was because I was a little preoccupied by attending Leslie Householder’s Genius Bootcamp. My mind was being flooded with information….. I guess it was too busy to notice that I might be hungry. But, really….. I didn’t seem to notice any hunger pains. I DID however, have a small handful of Almonds and later in the day a banana. I thought I’d be getting more of a workout than I did and I was a little worried by it…… so I ate a few solids today. But they were still things that would be a part of a Green Smoothie. And, yes…. I say almonds because you can put nuts in your smoothies if you choose to….. I think I’m going to buy some almond milk to use as the liquid base instead of water.
Hubby’s weight down another pound or so this morning…. I was down 2 lbs from my starting weight on Monday. This really could be a changing journey and challenge. I truly don’t know how Joe Cross went for 60 days just juicing!
DAY 7 of D.O.G.S. — OK…. I’m not going to lie. This is not easy. Why do we always want that which we cannot have?
I’m also not going to try and tell you’ve that I’ve been perfect. While I have added some solid foods the last several days…. they are all ‘legal’ foods, because I would use them in a smoothie. So, technically I haven’t cheated. I’m just finding that just the smoothies aren’t giving me enough satiety. Perhaps I just need to drink them more often…. but there really is something satisfying about ‘chewing’ food.
I’ve also decided that I can’t become obsessed with what the scale is saying. After all…. like I said to my husband today…. why am I doing this anyway? Was my real goal to lose weight? …. or to start a better path of eating correctly and getting off sugar and other ‘white’ foods that aren’t good for me? Probably both….. but I need to give myself a chance too…. it’s only been 7 days!
A friend just posted something on Facebook today that said something about how it takes your body 30 days to notice the difference…. so I guess the fact that it’s only been a week shouldn’t discourage me, right? Just give it time, Wanda!
I can’t guarantee that I will have days without any solids. Perhaps. If you see the protocol recommended by Joe Cross, the man from the movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead…. he recommends a 15 day regimen that consists of the first 5 days being green smoothies and solid fruits and vegetables. Then the next 5 days is only smoothies (or as he calls it, juicing….. perhaps because he uses a juicer not a blender!) The last 5 days, you add the solid fruits and veggies back in. Maybe I’ll find 5 days in the middle of this 30 days to just do the smoothies. I suspect it will get a little easier as I go….. maybe.
It doesn’t help that I’ve joined the Pinterest community lately! Seeing too many good food posts on there doesn’t help! However, I’m finding some great healthy recipes that I’m excited to try when this is over!
DAY 18 of D.O.G.S.– OK….. haven’t been doing so great with the Drink ONLY Green Smoothies part…. BUT…. we have kept very vegan eating fresh fruits and vegetables and keeping away from dairy, starches and sugar so I think that’s pretty good!
I’m thinking of taking a 5 day plunge of ONLY Green Smoothies starting on Monday. I can make it for 5 days…. Right? That will give me about 5 days to add back in the solids before the 30 days is up. I am ready to eat more healthy all the time though, so it’s all been good!
DAY 24 of D.O.G.S.– Well…. I have NOT been successful in doing a day of only Green smoothies yet. At least not since the first week. I was hoping to do one this week, but we had a lot of fresh fruit and veggies around that I didn’t consider to be smoothie worthy…. (at least I don’t think I’d like the taste of them in a smoothie!) … and they needed to be used! So…. of course…. we used them! My husband just ordered another Bountiful Baskets that will be picking up tomorrow…. so we’ll see if it contains foods that need to be consumed outside of a smoothie!
We are still being VERY good about only eating fruits and veggies. It’s slowly paying off. Besides feeling better…. I am SLOWLY losing weight…. but I guess that’s the best way to do it anyway, right? I didn’t weigh in this morning, but I can tell from the fit of my clothes that I’m slowly losing inches. I need to let that be more important to me than what it says on the scale anyway! As long as I look and feel good….. I really don’t care what it says!
I’m down officially about 5 lbs. since starting… possibly more. I had dropped a few pounds just before starting… at least I think I did…. I don’t know how I did…but I was down. So… if you count what my weight was several days before starting this, I’ve lost more like 10 lbs. It’s all good! I’ll take it!
My husband has lost about 15 lbs. He’s at his prime weight right now. At least I think it’s a weight he looks really good at. I suppose he could lose a little more, but for his bone structure…. this is a good weight for him. When he’s been lighter, he looked a little sickly. Of course…. that was done on Hcg… so that might be why. When you lose weight so quickly… I think you can look different than if it comes off slowly. He feels he’d like to lose a little more ‘fat’ off his body. We’ll see what happens doing it this way. I suspect that the last 10 lbs or so that he’s’ thinking about will come off much slower than the first 15 lbs did.
I really think moving into doing this as a lifestyle change will be so much easier by forcing ourselves to be Vegans for a month. The hard part will be limiting the other foods I want to work back into the diet. Mostly starches…. I’ve learned that eating meat ‘sparingly’ will probably be a lot easier that I thought. But I do love bread. I just need to know that 1 slice a day is all I need.
I’m just grateful that we’ve taken the time to do this….. whether or not it’s been all Green smoothies or not… it’s been worth it!
I’ll check back in with you as we approach the end of our 30 days! Oh…. BTW….. I asked some FB friends whether or not they considered popcorn to be a vegetable….. some said yes, others not…. BUT… I was hankering for a snack one night and we popped popcorn in our air popper and put coconut oil and salt on it and I loved it! We’ve done it a few times since then and it doesn’t seem to be interfering! I figure it’s a good snack once and a while! As long as you are popping from scratch and not eating that toxic microwave popcorn you buy in a store!
If you don’t have a air popper but would like a more healthy alternative….. here’s a recipe for making your own microwave popcorn.
DAY 28 of D.O.G.S.– OK…. shoot me. Tell me you are disappointed. It’s OK. I understand. But it’s Valentines Day and I really didn’t know what Shawarma was!
Since everyone likes to go to dinner, or lunch as in our case today, for Valentines Day, we tried some place new. Our original plan was to eat at Cheese Cake Factory and try out their new under 500 calorie menu because it has a lot of good sounding salads on it. (It helps when your daughter works there and brings home the new menu to look at!)
We went to the dentist this morning for our check ups and thought we’d stop there for lunch since the dentists office is right there by the mall. We’ll… Mandy didn’t end up working at Cheese Cake today, so John decided we should go somewhere else instead. (He’d rather tip her than someone else that works there…. no offense to the rest of the servers!)
So…. since I got my new iPhone the other day…. I asked Siri where we could find some good vegetarian choices. (See…. I started off with good intentions!) We ended up going to Couscous Mediterranean Grill in Murray. What a delightful little place! I looked over the menus items and saw this word Shawarma on the menu a couple of times with no mention of what it really was. It looked like it was maybe a sort of flat bread on another menu item, so I figured a little flat bread with my Mediterranean salad would be OK. I would most likely not really eat it…. at least not all of it.
Well…. as it turns out….. Shawarma is meat! Not a good thing when you are tying to stay Vegan for a few more days! The funny thing is…. it almost looked like a bread that had been soaked in a balsamic vinegar type solution when I first saw it so I almost thought my first impression of flat bread was right. But… no….. it was meat. I’m not one hundred percent sure what kind…. but I have a big suspicion it was lamb. Oh and did it taste good! Now mind you….. this 30 day challenge was to be Vegan for 30 days. Considering it’s day 28 today…. I think I did pretty well!
Be mad at me if you want…. call me a loser…. call me a failure….. call me a cheater….. I don’t care! I enjoyed it! And it’s Valentines Day, so there!
All things considered…. this whole thing has been a modification from almost the beginning. If you’ve read my other posts on D.O.G.S. you know that it hasn’t been just Green Smoothies for most of the time anyway. We’ve been very good at sticking to vegetables and fruits. I really don’t feel bad about this one time having a little meat.
We only have 2 days left before we start adding an occasional meal with meat in it, so I think it’s OK. I’m happy with the way my clothes are starting to fit and I’m confident that if we continue to eat Vegan 85% of the time that the weight will continue to come off. At least it will be coming off the right way…. no matter how long it takes!
Oh… and by the way…. this little place has to DIE for Garbonzo Chips and Hummus with Mango Salsa. Yikes! I need the recipe!
DAY 30 of D.O.G.S. — Well….. here we are. We made it! Today is day 30 of drinking only Green Smoothies. If you’ve been following my updates, you know that according to the title of the challenge….. technically, we failed!
I think we had 3 or 4 days of just smoothies, but certainly not 30. And that was right in the beginning of the challenge. We found it pretty hard to only ‘drink’ our food. So, as many of you know…. we started eating whole fruits and vegetables in addition to the smoothies.
Personally, I wouldn’t call the challenge a failure in any way shape or form. In fact….. as far as I’m concerned, it was a great success! My ultimate goal of the challenge was to eat healthier, stay away from sugar and processed foods and hopefully loose weight. Well… I’ve done all those things, so I consider it a great success!
In fact, during this journey, I’ve collected some awesome whole food recipes which I’ve been keeping track of on Pinterest and I even ran across a website today that teaches how to eat only Raw veggies and fruits. I watched a series of videos and Chef Tina Jo made some great sounding recipes, including meatballs and meatloaf (meatless of course) that I would like to try! Now I just need to find a great supplier of raw nuts, cause she uses those a lot in her recipes. Here’s the website if you’re interested.
My husband and I are both committed to tying to eat Vegan 80% of the time and only eat meat sparingly. I’m learning there are other ways to make delicious snacks and treats without using white sugar and flour. Again…. Chef Tina Jo had some interesting sounding recipes for treats.
Am I glad it’s over? Well… sure, for the most part. I’m glad because now I can have a little whole grain bread here and there and some meat on occasion. It’s still all a choice for me and I’m choosing to eat healthy!
Here’s my recommendation to you if you want to try something like this 30 day challenge. If you’re not ready to go completely vegan…. at least start by cutting out white sugar and flour and starting to drink at least one green smoothie a day. I think you’ll find that those changes alone can make a big difference for you.
If you want to try a ‘challenge’…. I would recommend that you go to Joe Cross’ Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead Reboot your life website and try his 15 day challenge. Now, keep in mind that Joe Cross does juicing, not smoothies. You can certainly do that if you like… but I prefer the smoothies. I need the extra fiber!
OR... you can read what I have written below and give green smoothies a try. I created this document several months ago when a friend asked me what we were putting in our smoothies. Since the Green Smoothie Girl doesn’t really have the basic recipe on her website (though there is a lot of other good info there…) I took this off the handout she gave out at the presentation I attended.
So here’s the document I created:
“The following is taken directly from the hand out given out at the Green Smoothies Girl Classes
Why is the green smoothie habit worth 10 min of your day?
One quart is 12-15 servings of greens and fruit. That quart costs only $2.50 at retail prices. Save money (1) growing a garden, and (2) buying an upright freezer and storing greens and fruit in season. 95% of people in my research experience noticeable improvement in health/quality of life. 84% are so enthusiastic about it that they share it with others. The top health benefits reported in my research are:
More energy (85%)
More Positive, stable mood (54%)
Better digestion (79.5%)
Improvement in skin tone (50%)
Fewer cravings for sweets (65%)
Weight loss (50%, average of 18.75lbs)
Robyn’s Green Smoothie Template Recipe
(yields 5+ pints of green smoothie)
3 cups water & ice
Up to ¼ cup Agave (optional) or pinch of stevia
Greens, added and blended up to the 6 cup line in the blender ( spinach, swiss chard, kale, collards, celery, turnip greens, beet greens, arugula, dandelion, etc.)
Fruit, added and blended up to the 9-cup line in the blender ( mixed berries, bananas, pears, apples, oranges, pineapple, lemons/limes, peaches, etc.)
Go to her website and sign up for her newsletter or just look around the site. I would suggest going to one of her classes too. Check her Events tab for a class near you.
Here’s what I’ve been putting in my basic Green Smoothie:
2 cups water (sometimes in combination with Almond milk) Kale, Collard, Spinach, an apple, an orange, frozen 3 berry mix, protein powder and fiber powder and some ice cubes. I love to add some coconut oil too. I do NOT use a sweetener.
My latest combination that I really LOVE is:
2 cups water, Kale, Collard, Spinach, 1 mango, 2 peaches, handful of blueberries, 6 or 7 strawberries, coconut oil, protein powder, fiber powder and about 6 ice cubes.
Just play around till you get a combo you like. The most important nutritional part is the greens…. So be generous in what you use. The fruit really takes over the flavor.
That’s the basic idea of a green smoothie! Find what you like and drink one at least everyday. The above recipe makes enough for my husband and I to have two fairly good size smoothies a day. Or we will just drink one and pour the rest in a pitcher and have it the next morning. It’s almost better the second day!
Give it a try!” P.S.— Bananas add a lot of flavor to your smoothies!
I hope you’ve enjoyed following our journey for these 30 days. I’m grateful I (we…hubby and I) did it. It’s given me a great start and a desire to eat better all the time. As far as weight loss goes…. in case you’re interested…. I lost about 10 lbs and my hubby lost about 15 lbs. We are not complaining! Besides…. we feel great!
Let me know if you decide to give it a try! I hope we’ve inspired you!