The Clean Hippie

Seeking the sustainable life in New York City

Clean Program Recap…. April 17, 2010

Filed under: experiment,Food,Products — Alden @ 8:11 pm
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So I promised I would keep you filled in on how The Clean Program went. You know, that very expensive cleanse for which I shelled out $350? I’ve been procrastinating on posting this, because I’m a little embarrassed on how it turned out.

I wanted to try the cleanse not really for weight loss, though that would be awesome. It was just to rid my system of toxins that I have built up. That anyone, really, has built up. I wanted to flush out the preservatives and smog and sugar, the nasty stuff they put in hamburgers and  the pesticides left fruit. My aunt had told me about her liver cleanse, and how she felt so much better after, especially since she lost five pounds during and ten pounds after. Nice, right?

Well I wish I could tell you that my cleanse was super effective. In fact, I bet it is super effective. I just wouldn’t know from personal experience. When I followed requirements – a shake in the morning, a meal free from sugar, soy, bread, beef, milk, and any processed foods for lunch, and a shake for dinner, plus supplements), my weight would drop precipitously. I dropped two pounds just on the first day. But I hardly ever did follow the instructions. I drank beer. I ate sugary stuff. I ate out instead of having the shakes.

After the three weeks, I was no lighter. In fact, weighing myself four weeks after I started, after three weeks of half heartedly following the cleanse and a week of eating Easter Chocolate, I was up one pound, net. Yikes!

My face is much clearer these days, though I can’t say for sure it’s correlated to the Clean Program. I also can’t claim that I dropped real weight while I was following the restrictions. At one point I was down 4.5 pounds. But the speed at which it came back leads me to believe it might have been water weight. Who knows?

Now I have a weeks worth of pills and powder left, if I could just bring myself to to go gung ho for one week, just to see what would happen….

Here’s the moral of the story: It’s great if you have admirable will power, don’t mind turning down invitations for dinner and drinks for three weeks, are very organized and prepared, and enjoy cooking. Otherwise, don’t bother.


Day 5 of the Clean Program: Am I clean yet? March 19, 2010

Filed under: experiment,Food — Alden @ 10:39 pm
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Ok, I’m not an all or nothing type of girl. Some people are. Take Scott, my boyfriend. When he says, “I’m not going to drink,” he means he’s not going to drink. Ever, anytime, no matter what the occasion. Me, when I say “I’m not going to drink,” it means, “If the opportunity for drinking doesn’t present itself, and I can easily find an excuse for not drinking, then, I won’t drink.

So you can see where this is going. The Clean Program is very stringent. One shake in the morning, a “regular lunch” (which isn’t actually regular, it consists of quinoa and vegetables usually) and a shake for dinner. With pills and powder.

I’ve been pretty good about it this week. I haven’t eaten anything against the rules. (Ok, I filched two quaker rice cake bites from my roommate.) But obviously I’m worried about this weekend. It’s easy to plan your eating schedule when you work every day. I make a shake for breakfast, pack a lunch, and wait until I get home to have a shake for dinner. And then I eat 5 tablespoons of almond butter and feel guilty. I did that three nights in a row, no joke.

Well, the tub of almond butter is gone, but I have the prospect of a weekend of parties looming ahead of me. I know myself, and I know that after 30 seconds of someone saying, “Hey! Why aren’t you drinking?” I’ll go grab a beer. In fact, I’ve already had three and it’s 6:30 on Friday. Yup, there was a work party on the roof and I had three beers. Not in the cleanse program. Maybe if I take some of those supplements it will negate it? Not likely.

Scott will disapprove.

Anyway, knowing that we have dinner plans, I had a shake for lunch instead. It was so beautiful out! Most of my work stuff was on hold, waiting for someone else to address it, so I snuck out of the building and walked a couple blocks to the Energy Kitchen to grab a smoothie.

When I walk to and leave work, the neighborhood is almost deserted. But today, there were plently of people out in the sunshine. I walked past a young guy lounging in his open window drinking a beer while his friend chatted idly behind him. A gay man with gauges in his ears, leaning against a wall, complimented me on my necklace. Joggers passed me, cyclists whizzed by.

Long story short: I got the shake. I’m ruining my cleanse already, and whatever, life is good.

Happy weekend!


Day 2 of the Clean Program: getting better, but still hungry! March 17, 2010

Filed under: experiment,Food — Alden @ 2:13 am
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This morning I hit upon a delicious smoothie in which I can put my supplements that doesn’t break any of the many rules. I can’t put in dairy or soy, sugar, honey, orange juice, apple juice, or bananas. But I can put in frozen berries, pure pomegranate juice, raw agave nectar, and almond milk. The result was fantastic, and almost completely masked the gritty powder taste. So no gagging, thankfully.

I also didn’t feel so poorly today. Though that may be because I missed my lunch supplements, which I’ll talk about later.

But I’m not doing the program perfectly. Sure, I haven’t eaten anything that is off my list, though it is tempting. Yesterday I got an email saying some girls on the 9th floor were having a bake sale fundraiser. I would have loved to support them! But alas, that is SO off the list.

Where I am not doing so well is:

1. Exercise. Like usual, crazy work is giving me hardly enough time to sleep, much less get a good workout in, so I haven’t been able to sweat out the toxins. My workout is my 15 minute brisk walk to work every morning. Pathetic.

2. My nightly almond butter binges. Ha, I know right? You’re like, “Wtf, Alden. Almond butter binges?” Yeah, well, if all you had to eat was two fruit shakes and a lunch of chicken and quinoa, you would be hungry too! Tonight and last night I had my shakes, and then pulled out the almond butter, just for a taste, and ended up spooning it into my mouth like a fat kid with a forbidden tub of chocolate icing. I bought that $14 jar on Sunday, and it’s almost half gone! I mean, almond butter is technically ok, but I think eating a fifth of the jar in one sitting might be frowned upon.

3. I forgot my lunch/supplements today. Vicki and I left the apartment the same time, and in all the chatter I forgot my lunch! Luckily the cafeteria at work had quinoa and chicken. I had to walk past the stir fry station, pizza station, burger station, pasta station, and St. Patrick’s Day themed cupcakes, but I did it! I still missed my lunch supplements though. Poopy.

I will say this – in between yesterday morning and this morning my weight dropped by two pounds. Woah!


Day 1 of The Clean Program March 16, 2010

Filed under: experiment,Food — Alden @ 12:34 am
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I got up early this morning to make sure I had everything set and organized. Four bottles of pills, two jugs of powder. First I made my smoothie. Even though I used the “Flavor-packed” recipe, it still tasted pretty bad, but drinkable. I gulped it down as quickly as I could, swallowed four pills, then cooked some chicken to use in my lunch.

In my lunch bag went:

  • My lunch meal of polenta and chicken. (Polenta isn’t allowed but I’m not wasting it! At least it’s organic.)
  • 8 pills: 4 for lunch and 4 for dinner
  • A travel coffee mug with the powder, in case I got held up late at work and need to make my “dinner” there.
  • A water bottle with lemon squeezed in it.
  • Extra lemon to add to my water throughout the day.

At around 1 I had my lunch and took my second set of pills. A half hour later a headache crept in, and low-lying nausea took up residency in my stomach. Maybe I wasn’t drinking enough water? I had finished one bottle’s worth of water, but filled it again.

In between trips to the bathroom to deal with all that water I was drinking, I marveled at how I felt almost high. Were toxins being released into my body? Or was I just hungry with a hyperactive imagination? Either way, I don’t think I ate a big enough lunch, something I hope to fix tomorrow.

Seven rolled around, and finding myself still at work and the cafeteria closed, (Damnit, need to bring coconut water or juice with me tomorrow!) I filled my coffee mug with water and shook it to mix in the powders.

I took a gulp. I made a face. I took a gulp. I gagged. I set the water bottle down and decided to pick up some organic pomegranate juice on my way home so I could try this powder thing again. It was at this moment I thought to myself, “Am I really doing this for 20 more days?”

I’m not going to tell you my actual weight, but starting tomorrow I’ll tell you + or – how many pounds from my set point this morning. Stay tuned…