Refresh Review and Results

This is a long one… but i think it’s important to provide a thorough review!!! 

Before

I think I have been researching cleanses for 2 years. I have read about them all, juice cleanses, elimination diets, even an egg cleanse? I didn’t know where to turn, and I found most of them disheartening because they require little to no actual eating for a prolonged period of time.

 

I already don’t eat enough foods due to dietary restrictions, why would I want to restrict myself to less food! The thought of NOT eating for days and just drinking juices scared me even more. I’ve seen plenty of people who have great results… but have I mentioned before that I’m a “texture” person? I like crunch and chewing.

When I was in Vegas recently, I heard about the launch for the 3-Day Refresh. It is a 3 day cleanse that combines the usage of Shakes and small meals. Not only was this a 3 days (who can’t do something for 3 days??) cleanse, but it also had food integrated into the plan! I could eat!

 

Here’s what I knew about the cleanse going in…

It is meant to be a jump start that will not only help you lose weight but also provide you some real life experience with healthier eating habits.

Unlike other cleanses, where the weight comes creeping back on, this one was created different. Most juice cleanses tax your organs, do a number on your metabolism and leave you feeling upset regardless of the results. Heck, I would think not eating for days would do a number on my emotions! Have you ever seen a Hangry girl??

The 3-Day Refresh was scientifically designed to do just this opposite of a normal cleanse. It was formulated to detoxify and cleanse, while also supporting your metabolism. No internal battles necessary. You eat, nutritious whole foods during the process to re-energize your organs. Because of the science behind it, you should not only lose weight, but feel better because your body is functioning more efficiently.

Interest peaked… so what does it mean? What do I have to do?

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The plan is simple, follow the exact same diet guidelines for 3 days! 3 Shakes a day, one fiber drink, loads of filtered water, 3 small meals and plenty of fruits and veggies to snack on through the day.

Now, here’s a small confession, I’m a review snob. I have to be. I work in healthcare, who has willy nilly amounts of $$ to go spend on things without seeing people’s results and real life experiences. So after leaving Vegas, I sort of lurked for a while. I know that sounds creepy… but not really! I just kept my eyes on my teammates results, reviews about the taste of the products… etc.

After 2 weeks of seeing people’s results, I just had to try it for myself. It seemed like the average loss was 3 lbs, 3 inches in 3 days.

 Now, I know most of you are thinking? What 3 lbs does Eiren have to lose?

When I was prepping for Vegas I was eating a SUPER restricted diet! Chicken and Sweet potatoes, egg whites, and that was pretty much IT!! I was leaning down for that Classic. (Must write a review on that experience too?)

When I got home, I got much more relaxed about my diet. My workouts were still killer, I got in that habit before I left. However, I was doing great during the workday… breakfast through lunch I gave myself gold stars. However, I found that I was snacking on a protein bar on the ride home. Did I need the ENTIRE bar? No. When I got home, first thing I did was open the pantry and grab a handful of tortilla chips. Then I’d do my afternoon workout. Then, not even a half hour before dinner, I would grab a small bowl of more tortilla chips, some baby carrots and asparagus, throw some shredded vegan cheese on and eat a mini bowl of nachos. Not even 45 minutes later I would be eating a gigunda bowl of veggies and protein for dinner. And some nights, I found that I was even eating another handful of tortilla chips. SIGH… In 4 weeks I put on 5 lbs. When you’re barely pushing 5’1, any lb makes a difference.

I thought, going into this, it would be a great wake up call for me. Get out of your head Eiren. Not only reset your body, but reset your mind.

So I pressed Add to basket.

 During…

I decided to start my cleanse on Monday, 7/21. I figured Monday’s were good. No weekend distractions, and I am always WAY more structured during the work week.

 I wasn’t feeling great all weekend, had the chills and body aches, but I thought I would push on. I can wish myself well!

  •  DAY 1

Monday morning, I got up, drank 8 oz of water and then did my normal workout – P90X3 Accelerator.

 After, I made my Shakeology “pudding” with mixed berries (through the plan) and then drank 16 oz of water to make up for the rest of the water I should have drank in the shake (I’m not a huge fan of shakes in the morning, so I improvised). I also had a very small, less than a cup, of coffee. Caffeine is discouraged, but I get up so early and it’s part of my day… so I figured a ½ a cup wouldn’t kill me!

shakeo

 By about 9 am, I started to get a little hungry, so I figured it was no time like the present to try the Fiber Sweep. Duh Duh Doh! What would this entail?? It wasn’t so bad! I mixed it up in my shaker at work with some cold water. I definitely think I would have benefit from a blender though. Apparently my guns aren’t as great as I thought. I was worried that I would be running to the bathroom though… nope.

I still wasn’t feeling great though, still had the chills through the day… I had meetings all afternoon, so I went down to the gym and did a half of a workout of arms thinking that I would sweat out whatever was nagging me. Didn’t work!

Lunch was a creative idea that I got… I decided on Sunday to make my Vanilla Fresh into a creation and then drink the water again like I did for the breakfast. I made #strangebutgood from Sprint2theTable jicama porridge! It was amazing! I added some cinnamon and ginger spices (free foods on the cleanse) and ½ an apple for some crunch. Amazingly delic!

jicama porridge

At this point, I wasn’t hungry at all by my usual 3 pm snack attack. But I ate anyways. I had baby carrots and hummus.

snack 1

By dinner, I knew I had my Vanilla Refresh to drink again, and I was trying to think about what to make for dinner. The kit comes with recipes to follow. I made a stir fry veggie bowl. I actually made this for all three nights! It was easy to fry the veggies up in one pan and then save and reheat them the next few nights. For the Shake I added a little more ice to make it like an ice cream and I ate it with a spoon.

stirfry dinner

  • Day 2:

Oh boy, I work up with the cold sweats and chills! I ended up taking a day off from work… well I worked from home, a day off from working out and just rested at home. I don’t think this was because of the cleanse, because I wasn’t feeling well starting on Saturday. But, I guess if anything, it was a smack in the face that I needed to actually REST completely! I didn’t have much of an appetite, but I did eat the plan as guided.

Meal 1: Shakeology pudding with mixed berries

Meal 2: Fiber Sweep

Meal 3: Vanilla Refresh with Avocado, Mango and Kale.

shake

shake 2

Meal 4: Mix of baby carrots and cherry tomatoes with some hummus.

Meal 5: Kale and tomatoes with coconut oil and a vanilla shake.

kale salad

I think I drank my body weight x2 in water on this day!!!

  • Day 3:

Like I said, I can “will myself well”. So I got up, and pretended it was business like usual. Went downstairs and did a light cardio workout for 30 minutes. I kept it light because I know this is a restricted diet to what I normally eat and what my body needs when I’m doing my usual workouts.

The only difference in meals between Day 2 and 3 was lunch… which was a horrible attempt at creating a recipe from the shake. I am the queen of baking with protein powders. I tried to make waffles… but stupid me, without a binder they won’t stick! I used pureed apple and green veggs to make what looked like a good batter. I had to leave them in the waffle iron for 15 minutes to get them off the iron! Lol! But I ate them anyways! I will not waste a shake.

I think the plan is supposed to follow the “vegan raw” diet. However, after a while, I need something else. So I mixed it up….

Oh and my afternoon snack was summer squash instead of carrots and tomatoes.

snack

 Review/Results:

  •  I wasn’t hungry!
  • I heard mixed reviews about the Fiber Sweep and Vanilla Refresh tasting funny… I didn’t think they were bad. I don’t think I would drink the fiber sweep on a daily basis! But it wasn’t horrid!
  • I actually enjoyed the vanilla refresh. I think if you make it properly and add certain foods to it, it blended well!
  • I think the one things that surprised me MOST about this… I wasn’t hungry that often! When I did get hungry, I drank more water. I actually drank A LOT more water than I usually do! I think this is something I need to continue on with!

hydrate

  • This one may be TMI for some, but I was SHOCKED at my digestion. I feel like it reset me completely. For the first time in a while, I had NO stomach pain on Day 1 or 3 (2 was iffy because of the sick situation) or gassy bloating. And I actually had normal BMs both day 3 and the day after!! Internally, my tummy feels fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!

So let’s get down to the brass tax here… what you all want to know about the weight loss?

  • Start Weight: 126.5        End Weight: 119.6 = 6.9 lbs lost (my normal weight is usually around 122, so I’ll be happy around that!!!)
  • Inches lost:   Belly: 3.5 inches Natural Waist – 2.5 inches

 

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I am entirely aware that most of this is water weight, but what a great way to not only re-set your body but, if I’m ever in pinch for a big event or anything… I will DEFINITELY be doing this again!!!!

Lessons Learned and Tips

  1. It’s only 3 days, you can do anything!
  2. Don’t do a cleanse when you don’t feel well!! I was already “in it” and didn’t want to waste the packets and the $$ I spent on the kit.
  3. My portion control was OUT OF CONTROL! I am going to definitely scale back to normal sized bowls for one! And get back to measuring out foods.
  4. Don’t exercise during a cleanse. Give your body a full time to rest. Or if you are going to do something make it an active rest, ie walk or bike ride.
  5. I don’t need that much coffee, but I will continue to drink it anyways… (we all have our vices!) But I can cut out the afternoon runs to Starbucks! This will help save some extra $$ too!
  6. I need to drink MORE water!
  7. Find ways to get creative if you can… one thing I do is add flavor drops. My favorite are Capella’s Flavor Drops found on Netrition I love the Peanut butter and Green apple!! They have OOOOODLES of flavors too!

capellas drops

  1. Fully aware this is water weight, and I will probably gain some back!

 

Have you ever tried a cleanse?  How did you feel after? 

 

oxo

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“I can’t go out, I need to wash my hair…” and an update!

Have you ever used this excuse before to get out of a date?  Or is that so 10 years ago??  Lol!! I can’t believe I’m going to say this, but this has sort of become part of my life now.  In the last 2 years, I have noticed that my hair is getting thinner and starting to fall out.  I’ve been to the doctors (both my Endocrinologist and my Gynecologist) and they both say it’s the other person!  One says it’s my hypothyroidism, one says it’s my pituitary gland!  Can’t they just figure it out??!!

Well, last year, about this time, my hair REALLY started to flake and fall out.  When I saw flake, I mean like nickel size portions that would just peel.  Sorry for the horrible description.  But needless to say, I was horrified.  I’m a girl, and my thick hair was pulling out like no man’s business.  I would take a shower and feel horrified.  Well… I finally got a referral to a dermatologist from my Primary Care Physician.

I saw the dermatologist and he said it was Seborrheic Dermatitis.  By definition (from PubMed Health) it is “Seborrheic dermatitis is a common, inflammatory skin condition that causes flaky, white to yellowish scales to form on oily areas such as the scalp or inside the ear. It can occur with or without reddened skin.” All I know is that it’s itchy and makes me want to cry!  So he gave me two different things, an oil that I had to put on and sleep in, and then some spray.  My dilemma then came up, how was I going to sleep with straight oil on my hair?  The first night I tried it, my pillow and pillowcase were destroyed.  I ended up going and getting a head wrap.  Every other night I would wrap my head up and then have to double, triple wash the stuff out in the morning.  I did this for about a month or two and, that, in combination with the prescription spray seemed to help.  It slowly went away for a little while.  I would have flare ups here and there, but would use the spray as needed.

I have no more spray!!  And it’s starting to act up again.  Since we JUST moved to a new State, and I don’t have health insurance right now, I went back to old reliable.  Natural remedies!!  I was at Whole Foods (Yah, I live near one now!!) and I asked the gals in the beauty section for help.  I explained my situation, and this one girl literally showed me like 15 options that I could do!!  I was so happy! Yes, my bank account was cringing, BUT, it’s my hair and it’s worth it!

She recommended two things as the “top” products to use.  Apparently there is a gentleman with psoriasis that created a product called The Seaweed Bath Company.  She recommended their shampoo, but said they did not have it stocked at their location yet.  I asked if she knew when, but she said she wasn’t sure!  So, while I didn’t get it or try it, it will be my next shampoo to use when I get a chance!!

The citrus scent looks great!! Plus citrus smells wake you up in the morning, and that’s when I typically wash!

Back to Whole Foods, the lovely girl then showed me this oil.  It’s called Neem Hair Oil, made by Dr. Hauschka.com.  Have you ever heard of it? It acts as a lubricant that protects and prevents breakage in the hair.  InStyle Magazine ranked it on their top list of hair products.  (I found that out later).  Another girl at Whole Foods recommended that I put it on at night, and sleep with it on, like my past experience.  She said that she had used it and her hair was so shiny and soft.  There were two options, the lotion and the oil.  I went for the oil.  For as much as I hated the “sleep on it”, I figured it was worth a shot.

After 1 treatment, ONE, I can 150% say this was worth every penny!  All $34 worth of them!!  I did a spot treatment, only one the one portion of my head that was flaking.  That morning, I took a shower and rinsed it out.  No double wash, just a good suds!  I didn’t blow out my hair that day, I just let it be.  I have not used it in two days, and I have now blown out and curled my hair twice.  I have no itching, and the flakes are GONE.  That was after 1 treatment.  I CANNOT believe it, and I cannot thank those two girls at Whole Foods enough!

She also did suggest Biotin supplements, chia seeds for extra oil and coconut oil to both eat and use in my hair!  These gals are a WEALTH of knowledge!!!

I already eat Chia Seeds.  I love them because they “gel” things up!  Bind away!!  But, according to Dr. Oz, and many other sources, “Chia provides a complete protein- containing all essential amino acids in an easily-digested form.  Chia seeds are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, omega-3 oil, fiber and minerals which all work toward strong and shiny hair”.

Biotin is a supplement that you take.  Now here is what I didn’t know, If you’re going to take it, you need at least 5,000 mcg per day!  HUh!??  Well, biotin also according to Dr. Oz (love him!) is a B vitamin found in legumes, egg yolks and milk.  It’s great for promoting hair growth and prevent thinning hair.  I take it in a hair/nail formula!  Or at least I was… where did I pack it??? hmm…

And lastly coconut oil!  I usually use this to bake with.  Never would have thought to use it, straight up, in my hair!  It’s a great conditioner, and one of the most effective ways to help regrowth of damaged hair!

I found a fabulous DIY Coconut Oil Leave in Conditioner! Thanks Well & Good NYC!!!

THANK YOU!!!

Have you ever struggled with dry scalp or hair loss?

If so, what products helped you??? 

Have you ever tried homeopathic treatments??

And a quick update!!  WE MOved!! I saw “we” because my dad decided to move with me.  I feel like the last month has been a dream it’s gone by so fast.  We are in Maine! Yah!  We found a great house to rent and it looks like the sale of our house is going… lots of showings.  Our house on the Cape has been rented! 🙂  All signs point to YES, this was the RIGHT decision!! Fumble has been slow to adjust.  I’m actually afraid to let him out because he seems to want to lay down and refuses to come back inside.  He must like the Maine air!! 😛 I’ll keep you updateD!  For now it’s onto the job hunt!  Have had a few interviews, but nothing so far.  I figure interviews are great because it’s more experience on how to communicate and increase your confidence when discussing yourself and what you have to bring to the table.  Sometimes I am either horrified or completely stunned at my responses!  The one thing I’ve learned is that it’s okay to stop, take a breath after the question and just let that awkward moment of silence just lull over!  You want to make sure you answer the question appropriately!

Have you ever had an awkward interview situation??

xoxo!