Detox Week 1

I’ve officially hit the ground running with the 30-day detox.  Today is technically day 2, but yesterday I was busy celebrating Opening Day with the rest of Baltimore (don’t worry I didn’t cheat… which was pretty hard).

Arbonne has a little questionnaire profile they suggest everyone who does the Detox fill out at the beginning of the plan.  The idea is to give you a goal so that you stay focused and give yourself something to think back on when temptations rise.  Here is mine:

Why are you starting this plan today?  I’m tired of feeling tired and sluggish and like my brain is cloudy all the time.  I have so much to do and so many career goals, I never want to feel like I have to take a day to relax because I’m having trouble focusing.  Plus, I want to know that I am fueling my body properly to train for an upcoming half-marathon.

What does being fit mean to you? Being fit means having the energy and focus to do all the things I am passionate about.

How do you feel today? Well, on Day 1 I felt great – nervous and excited, but overall I felt fine.  Today (Day 2), I feel tired, and drained – exactly how I don’t want to feel anymore.  Here’s hoping this passes quickly.

How do you want to feel in 30 days? Clear, light, full of energy.  None of what I’m feeling today.

 

Goal #1: Cut out Dairy Totally

I am 99% sure I am lactose intolerant.  From upset stomachs to terrible post-nasal drip, I have many symptoms that could be synonymous with allergic reactions.  I’ve been able to cut milk and yogurt out of most of what I eat, but cheese is a totally different story.  I love cheese and even though I know it is absolutely disgusting and terrible for me – there is nothing better than a block of Jarlsberg after a long day.

Why? Because Dairy makes me sick.  Almost immediately I start to feel nauseous after I eat anything with dairy in it.

Obstacle: My own willpower.

Plan to overcome it: Introduce myself to new foods that I love just as much as cheese and hope that something will ultimately take its place and I will no longer feel addicted to cheese.

Goal #2: Drink More Water and Less Caffeine and Alcohol

I drink a lot of water, but I probably drink even more caffeinated beverages too.  I’m not a big soda fan, but I do love beer.  I’ve cut back on drinking a lot in the past year, but I’d like to cut even more out post detox.

Why? I’m at the age where even if I have two drinks I feel hung over the next day.  I want to learn to really enjoy one glass of wine instead of feeling like I need to have three. Same with coffee…

Obstacle: The social element of drinking

Plan to overcome it: Knowing that it is totally okay to have just water when dinning out.  Or passing on shots.

Goal #3: Tone Up

I want to build more muscle and get stronger so I can train harder for my distance races.  Who knows, maybe I’ll finally sign up for that marathon this year.

Why? It is on my bucket list to run a marathon before I turn 30…. Which is closer than it’s ever been….

Obstacle: Paying more attention to what I’m eating and the proportions.  Having a more balance diet – more protein, less sugar.

Plan to Overcome it: This detox – removing the bad stuff and incorporating the goods.

 

This blog is pretty reflective of how I’m feeling today, so my apologies for a some-what half-assed entry.  Here’s hoping the next few days start to get better…. and just like that I was so worn out yesterday I didn't hit publish.... 

PreTox Week!

About a year and a half ago my dear friend Lauren asked me if I would be interested in doing a 30-day detox program.  Me being the sometimes over zealous but always up for a challenge type of person, was totally into it and jumped up and down with a big ol’ YES.

She asked me at a time where I was working 40-50 hour weeks on my feet, and had little to no energy to do anything else.  I would occasionally squeeze in a power yoga class but over all felt too tired to run, dance, or even go out to explore Chicago. 

I was so frustrated by the fact that was literally tired all the time.  I could sleep for 10 hours, wake up, power through two or three cups of coffee, and want to go right back to sleep.  Things that I loved to do got pushed aside because lounging on my couch was so much more appealing than walking to the L stop and meeting up with friends.

I knew I had to make some changes, but I couldn’t put my finger on what.  I’m not overweight, in fact, I’m in pretty good shape, and I’m reasonable about what I eat, but rarely do I turn down the offer of freshly baked anythings.  I was hoping the detox would help reset my system and give me back the energy I had when I was 20.

Let me interject here that I have tried about a million cleanses, juice diets, and detoxes – everything from the Lemonade Diet to the Paleo Reset Program with the purchase of a $200 juicer in between.  None of them worked because they were so foreign for my body and my lifestyle.  (No matter what anyone says, it is impossible to live an active lifestyle if you are only drinking cayenne pepper and maple syrup… my reaction to this torture was scarfing down an entire jar of peanuts in one sitting.  Hey, at least it wasn’t a bag of Oreos?)

I took a good look at what the Arbonne 30-Day Detox program meant.  It provides you with recipes that you can prepare in your own kitchen (none of that ridiculous $20/a meal and we’ll send you the ingredients and method), and you get to eat solid food. This part was tragically important for me, because no one likes Hangry Izze.  I mean, I love food, and the ritual of sitting down to eat a meal is engrained in us.  Taking that away makes detoxing even harder.

Needless to say, I was on board and ready for action.  In fact, I was so excited, that a few days before the program started, I did a PreTox, where each day I slowly removed one of the banned substances from my diet.  Sugar and Caffeine are the biggies for me – mainly because my morning cup of coffee is a ritual, and (just like a drug) I am convinced that I am a monster before I have it.

Okay, so it wasn’t as picture perfect as I’m making it out to be – I had my concerns:

1)    The cost.  Holy cow it is a lot of money to invest, and it doesn’t include the food. Part of me stayed on the program when I wanted to give up and run to Burger King because I had invested so much money into it.  The products aren’t cheap – as they shouldn’t be when you’re putting something into your body, not to mention, they are high quality vegan, gluten-free, products.

2)    Will I feel terrible?  You may feel strange for the first day or two.  I get the absolute worst caffeine headaches. I mean, really really bad headaches.  But I prepare myself for it by drinking more water as I drink less coffee.  I also try to replace my afternoon cup with a cup of green tea, which isn’t caffeine free, but it has significantly less.  You might be hungry and have every craving for everything removed from the detox – but willpower is a muscle we are strengthening with the program.

3)    Do I have enough supplies to get through all 30 days?  I blew through so much protein powder and detox tea, I was afraid I wasn’t going to have enough left.  Luckily, Arbonne consultants aren’t too far away (and OMG I’m one now!!)

4)    Will it work? Will I lose weight? What if I gain weight? Maybe I’m the wrong person to ask here because I have never gone into this program hoping to lose weight. But, I also don’t own a scale.  I measure my goals around how I feel. Do I have a lot of energy?  Does my stomach rumble after I eat?  How are things coming out of my body?  We can’t measure our health, or self worth for that matter, by a number on a scale.  If you want to see your progress, measure trouble areas* on your body and do yourself the favor of ditching the scale. Plus, muscle weighs more than fat and strong is beautiful.

While this detox begins on April 4th, we will be starting another program on April 18th.  Follow me here to get some insight (and I mean some brutally honest insight) into how things are going for me, and seriously consider joining in on the next group!

*Don’t use a tape measure.  Numbers seem to mean more to us than they actually should.  Take pieces of yarn or string to measure your arms, belly, thighs, neck, whatever. And see how those strings start to become shorter.  I mean it when I say you have to stop comparing your progress to numbers!

Some New Endeavours

First of all, welcome to my new site.  I thought it was time to incorporate everything that I'm up to and not just the acting side of things. Not to mention, I'm pretty sure I might have indirectly retired from acting.  (I'm willing to come out of retirement for the right opportunity!)

Since I stopped acting, I focused just about all of my time and energy on writing.  I wrote and produced two one-acts (one of them was produced three times), and my first full length play (which we produced one and a half times).  Broke, exhausted, and impatiently awaiting a response from the two grad school programs I applied to, I decided I needed a change of pace and packed up my little car to head out to Chicago.  I had four friends waiting for me, and they gave me all the tools I needed to settle in.

Less than a week into my new adventure, I got my first grad program rejection letter.  It devastated me and I felt very confused as to how I could have possibly spent SO MUCH TIME AND MONEY on something that just like that wasn't going to pan out.  I spent a few weeks feeling sorry for myself, vowing that I would never write again, and deciding which online accounting school I was going to enroll in, when I did a google search for "Music Business Programs". Lo and behold one of the best music business programs in the country was located right in the south loop of Chicago.  While it wasn't a Masters program, they offered a second bachelors which I could complete in three to four semesters. 

Just as I finished writing my application essays, I received my second rejection letter.  A few minutes after that, I sent off my application to Columbia College, with the hope that maybe this was actually what I was supposed to be doing.

About a month later, I went back East to see my friend Kathleen get married in Connecticut, had martinis with a friend in the Alphabet City, and cruised the East river before having sushi with one of my best ladies - I suddenly felt incredibly homesick for New York.  Maybe it was time to come home.

By the time I returned to my swanky Coach House in Bucktown, my acceptance letter had hit my mailbox. Alright then, Columbia it is.

I can't even begin to express how valuable my time at Columbia was.  I got to dance again, I was in classes with people who shared the same passions as I, I could have real-life conversations with my professors (some of whom I now consider friends and colleagues), but most importantly, I was given the tools and confidence to do the thing everyone dreams of doing - I started my own business.

I decided to call it Far From Home Entertainment because being away from home meant something for my creative ambitions.  I can't necessarily explain it farther than that, I just didn't think I could be successful if I had everything I wanted - Artists yearn to be uncomfortable.  We self-sabotage relationships, drink too much, and find ourselves doing outrageous things to make art.  I want to recreate that environment but also supply the business tools artists don't know to ask for.  It has been both difficult and rewarding, and four months in, I find myself becoming more excited every day.

After graduation, I knew I wasn't going to stay in Chicago.  Trust me, it was one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make, but I knew I wasn't going to stay, so it became about pulling the bandaid off fast and quick.  The memories I have from the beautiful springs and frigid winters will remain as some of my most adored - and I already have many plans to visit.

So now I'm living in Baltimore*, working day and night to get Far From Home off the ground and continue to pursue my passions as a writer, dancer, producer (just kidding, I'm not at all passionate about that - but I know people who are!), and music supervisor.  Oh, and I've decided to set some pretty outlandish goals... I'm aiming to write a new post every week, touching on the crazy things I'm up to and my progress with those extraordinary aspirations.

Come with me and you'll be in a world of pure imagination...

 

*North of Baltimore, in Chateau du Ma Mere.  It's temporary, but hey, so is being a starving artist.