Beachbody Ultimate Reset, Day 2

I woke up this morning feeling pretty good.  It is New Year’s Eve and we all slept in til about 9am.  I took my morning supplements, this time taking the Oxyginize orally…I just dropped about 12 drops on my tongue.  It’s a little salty, but easy to stomach.  I did notice that I got an almost immediate, dull headache that lasted a couple of hours.  I think it must have been due to the Oxyginize becacuse if you think about it, you’re giving yourself a shot of pure oxygen.  I wasn’t too bothered by it though.

While I waited the 30 minutes to eat breakfast, I looked over my lunch (Greek Salad with Chicken Breast and Pine Nuts) and decided to ditch it in favor of the Microgreen Salad from Day 1.  I know, I know…I said I wasn’t going to substitute.  But, it was a logistical issue.  We were going to a New Year’s Eve Run and needed to leave the house at 11:30.  I didn’t want to have to cook the chicken (which I don’t really care for anyway) and I already had leftover salad from yesterday.  So, that’s that.  Breakfast was good, and easy to make.  I used honey in my plain yogurt and was blown away at how good it was!

Lunch was on the go because we spent too much time browsing www.thevancouverrealestate.ca.  I did the 5k with my son, but walked most of it because Beachbody really doesn’t recommend exercise that raises your heart rate.  The reasoning behind this is that your body is using a lot of energy to support the detoxification that’s going on inside.  Strenuous exercise forces your body to redirect that energy, which is counter-productive.  Also, the meals–while nutritious–do not provide enough calories to support your body during exercise.  I admit that I did run a bit…but only because I didn’t want to finish with the back of the pack.  That’s just a pride issue.  A hilarious side note is that I finished only 2 minutes ahead of my husband, who was running the 10k.  Did I mention he runs marathons in his free time?

My schedule got a little screwed up after that.  The run was at 1, so it was after 2 by the time I was able to take my supplements and then I didn’t finish my DELICIOUS salad until almost 3.  Being New Year’s Eve though, I knew we’d be staying up late, so I didn’t sweat it too much.

Alkanalize was gross again.  This time, I mixed it in a glass with only about 3 ounces of water and took it like a shot.  But, it didn’t mix up very well and left a good deal of it in the bottom of the glass.  Still need to work on that one.

Dinner was PHENOMENAL.  I had been looking forward to it all day.  Actually, it was the guacamole that I was looking forward to.  I think avocados are the world’s perfect food.  I discovered Wholly Guacamole a while back and this time, I bought it in the single serving packets.  It’s a little more expensive that way, but easy to transport if you need to and it’s perfectly measured, so I’m not tempted to have just a “little more”.  The black beans and rice with the corn and salsa was just so tasty.  I made a double batch because I knew I would want it another time this week.

We were out an about a good portion of the day.  We had opted to have a quiet family night at home instead of trying to go out.  We had dinner, played a game of Words with Friends and then settled in to watch Doctor Who, which I slept through.  It was deep sleep, complete with dreams as my husband and son watched several episodes.  They woke me up at 11 to ring in the new year and I was asleep again by about 1am.

So far so good…but I am starting to dread days 3-5.  I’ve heard a lot about those being the worst days and I’m grateful that tomorrow is a holiday and I don’t have to go to work.

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Beachbody Ultimate Reset – Day 1

Welcome to Day 1 of Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  Day 1 is actually just the day I started the reset….the preperation started several days before.  Since it’s a 21 day program, and my birthday is January 21, I decided to start on Dec 30, so that I would be finished in time for my birthday so that I could indulge on that day.  In retrospect, that kind of thinking is exactly why I have battled my weight for all these years.  Yes, this is a 21 day program, but I believe that it’s really designed to change your relationship with food and your whole mindset about what you put in your body.  There’s no sense in doing this for 3 weeks only to go back to unhealthy ways.  And, now that I’m actually 5 days in, I am re-thinking what my choices will be on my birthday.  I still plan to go to my favorite restaurant but what (and how much) I eat and drink might be different that it would have been a few weeks ago.

Since I decided on Dec 30th and I knew that I would not be returning from our Christmas vacation until Dec 29th, I went online and did all of my grocery shopping so that it would be delivered in the morning on Dec 30th.  It was a brilliant idea, if I do say so myself.  Also, if you are unfamiliar with some of the ingredients, you won’t spend hours going up and down the aisles trying to find what you need.  I used Peapod delivery and they did not have everything I needed anyway.  Things like miso paste and smoky tempeh strips are available on Amazon.com though so it’s easy to order from them (especially if you have a prime membership, which I highly recommend).  I also made a trip to Whole Foods to get some things in bulk that I didn’t want to have an entire box of — things like millet, for instance.  I don’t particularly enjoy millet, but I’m committed to trying all of these recipes, so I bought it in a small quantity.  If you have a Whole Foods though, you can literally buy everything on the BUR shopping list there.  If you are unfamiliar with some of the items, just ask someone for help.  They are so nice in there and will even give you recommendations about different brands.

Speaking of the BUR shopping list, if you are not using the online tool at ultimatereset.com, you definitely need to aquaint yourself with it!  I wish it was a little more interactive — for instance, I’d like to be able to log my food, water, supplements and sleep from there, but maybe that will come eventually (hint, hint…).  Anyway, it’s nice because you can print out out a shopping list for each week, or Phase as the plan calls it. Also, from there you can sign up for a daily email that will send you your daily plan each morning.  I wish I had known about this because it asks you your start date but won’t let you use the current date, or any date before it to start.  I did sign up just to see what it was like — and it is great — but it’s a day behind for me so it’s rather useless.  Hopefully, they will fix that as well.

Okay, so Day 1.  It was really pretty un-eventful.  The food was very good — I really enjoyed the breakfast, which was a simple meal of eggs, whole grain toast and spinach.  The plan calls for kale or spinach.  I am a huge fan of kale’s nutritional value, and I use it regularly in smoothies, but I do not really like it steamed.  Spinach is a fine substitute and has phenomenal nutritional qualities as well, so I did not feel bad making a substitution right off the bat.

Speaking of substitutions….I did make a commitment to try all of the meals.  However, I did discover, from reading the official Facebook support page, that you can substitute any like meal in a given phase.  For example, if you hate eggs, you could substitute the oatmeal breakfast from Day 2 on Day 1 — or any other day in that Phase.  You can’t take a breakfast from Phase 2 and put it in Phase 1 or 3.  The exceptions are with animal proteins…you can’t have the salmon or chicken more than once during the week.  And, I’m not sure about the official stance on eggs, but I would think that you wouldn’t want to have them more than the two times that they are on the menu in Phase 1 (Day 1 & 3).  And since the idea is to slowly wean your body off of animal proteins, my sense is that you probably don’t want to have eggs on Day 6.  The bottom line is that while they recommend, and I strongly encourage, you to stick with the menu, there is some flexibility if you need it.  Also, you might think you don’t like something that turns out to be really tasty.  As you cleanse your palate, the foods will begin to really burst with flavor.

Lunch on Day 1 was AMAZING.  The Microgreen Salad is so good, and I generally hate making salads because they never taste as good as they do when someone else makes them.  Not this one!  I used cashews, which I LOVE, and it was a real treat.  There are 3 salad dressings that you can make that are in the recipe section of the book.  I made a batch of the Creamy Garlic, because it sounded amazing…and it is.  I also finally had a use for the Pampered Chef salad dressing shaker thingy that I bought a LONG time ago.  It will be getting regular use now.  The best part?  I discovered jicama.  I’ve had it before…in sushi I think, but I would never have bought it, much less put it in salad.  I’ll never make a salad without it again.  It is crunchy, giving the salad some texture and a little sweet which adds interesting flavor.  Also, it’s prounounced with an H sound, not a hard J….hi-ka-ma.  You’re welcome.

Dinner was great, too.  My whole family was thrilled to have salmon.  Living in the Pacific Northwest off an on for 20 years, I’m pretty picky about salmon.  If you don’t like salmon, it’s probably because you are eating farm raised, color added,  Atlantic salmon.  Don’t. It is generally mushy and has no flavor.  It also has added color, which is gross. Food doesn’t need to have color added to it unless you’re making green eggs and ham for your kid on Dr. Suess’s birthday.  The best salmon on the planet is Copper River Salmon.  But, you can only get it fresh for a few weeks in the summer…and it can be expensive.  But, look for fresh, wild NO COLOR added salmon like Alaskan Sockeye, Pacific King or Alaskan Silver.  Being on the East Coast now, it seems that Sockeye is what most markets stock.  I try to buy fish that is sustainably harvested as well, but that’s probably another issue for another blogpost.  The point is, buy good salmon.  You won’t regret it.  And, a serving is only 6 ounces, so you don’t have to spend and arm and a leg on it.

I guess I kind of got on a soapbox there, but I really believe that if you are eating quality food, you will be more satisfied.  And, you can’t properly detox if your food has random additives.

On to the supplements.  In Phase 1, you’ll be Mineralizing, Oxygenizing, Optimizing and Alkalinizing.  On day 1, I put the Oxygenize drops in my water, along with the “pinch” of Mineralize.  I mixed the Alkalinize in with about 6 ounces of water.  I’m not gonna lie…it’s gross.  It tastes like seaweed.  I don’t hate seaweed, but I don’t really want to drink it.  I’ve got to figure out a different way to do it.

I did not have a snack on Day 1.  It’s optional and I wasn’t hungry.

The only thing I’ll say about Day 1 that was sort of different is that I was SUPER tired.  Like exhausted, can’t-keep-my-eyes-open tired.  But, I had just returned from a week long trip to the West Coast where we were busy all day every day.  The three hour time difference kills me, too.  I also gave up the one or two cups of coffee that I normally have, so it seems like it was more of a combination of factors that led to the extreme fatigue.

So far, so good.  Bring on Day 2.

Life according to Jake

It’s been hard having a 13 year old these past few days.  In the past, I’ve been able to avoid talking about national tragedies by avoiding turning on the television.  I remember being so grateful that he was only 2 on 9/11 because I had no idea what I would have said to him.

Then, Friday happened and I had no idea what to say to him.  But, I had to say something.  I quickly realized that you don’t have to have an answer about “why?”, but the most important thing to do is listen and encourage them to talk about their feelings.  And, as we talked, I found that my sweet son was being as comforting to me as I was trying to be to him.

I was trying to explain to him about how I react to things —  I told him about a character in The Secret Life of Bees that I relate to.  May Boatright is a complicated personality. Highly sensitive to the pain of others, she carries the weight of the world in her soul.  She built a wailing wall in her backyard and goes there when she is upset.  And then I told him that I often joke that I need a wailing wall of my own in the backyard.

He looked at me and said, “Mom, you don’t need to build a wailing wall.  You have one right here”, and he patted his chest.  “God knows what’s in your heart”.

Tears filled my eyes as I looked at this child, who has no idea how wise he is, even though sometimes he still puts his pants on backwards.  I thanked him and told him that this was a conversation I will never forget.

I’ve said it before….I take no credit for how awesome he is.  But, I do like to share the insights he has.  Usually they are funny and light-hearted.  Today, I hope his wise words can bring someone else comfort as well.

Feel free to use this post as your own wailing wall.  My son and I would be privileged to join you in prayer for everyone affected by the Newtown shooting.  And, that means everyone.

wailing wall

My God is bigger than that

The emotions are riding high in light of what has happened in Newtown, CT. We all have a lot of opinions about a lot of different things. It seems the only thing that we aren’t divided on is our devastation over the loss of innocent lives.

I’m not here to rant about gun control or mental health…although I do have strong opinions about those things. Among all of the things that people are debating right now, in light of the tragedy, this is the thing that has me the most riled up:

This is one of the most offensive things I have ever seen. And to be clear, I am a Christian.

The argument that the absence an official school prayer time would indirectly (or directly) correlate with a slaughter in an elementary school is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard. And, again…I am a Christian.

One of the things I love to do when studying the Bible is to keep an on-going list of God’s attributes as I’m studying a passage. Doing this helps me understand God’s overall character. Understanding God’s character helps me identify when His character is being portrayed falsely. Here is a partial list of the attributes that I’ve listed in my Bible:

Creator
Good
Powerful
Wise
Loving
Omnipotent
Omnipresent
Graceful
Sovereign
Joyful
Forgiving
Truthful
Eternal
Unchanging
Glorious
Faithful
Holy

For the purposes of this post, I want to focus on “omnipresent”.

First, let’s define it:

om·ni·pres·ent

/ˌämnəˈpreznt/

Adjective
  1. (of God) Present everywhere at the same time.
  2. Widely or constantly encountered; common or widespread: “the omnipresent threat of natural disasters”.

As it relates to God, it means this is the attribute of God by which He fills the universe in all its parts and is present everywhere at once. Not a part, but the whole of God is present in every place.

Now, let’s support it with Scripture:

If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
(Psalm 139:8 ESV)

“Am I a God at hand, declares the LORD, and not a God far away? Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the LORD.
(Jeremiah 23:23-24 ESV)

“But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain you; how much less this house that I have built!
(1 Kings 8:27 ESV)

…that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us,
(Acts 17:27 ESV)

He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.
(Ephesians 4:10 ESV)

This is a small list, but the conclusion is that, in the simplest terms, there is no place to go where God is not already there.

And, then there is the Christmas story…

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us).
(Matthew 1:23 ESV)

Christians believe that this is fulfillment of the prophesy laid out in Isaiah:

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
(Isaiah 7:14 ESV)

The point is this: If you believe God is omnipresent, then you believe God is everywhere. Not everywhere except public schools. He’s not the big bad wolf who is stopped by brick.

I realize that this opens up questions. Questions like, “if God is everywhere, why did this happen”. It’s another blog post (or several) all-together, but I feel like I need to at least address it. I only wish I had a compelling answer. The only thing I can say for sure is that in His mercy and grace and love, God gives us free will. We are not puppets in a grand performance. And, there is unspeakable evil in our broken world. Hence, our desperate need for a Savior. The hope that I personally have is summed up in Revelation 22:20 and is the prayer that I always pray when I am distraught:

He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!

(Revelation 22:20 ESV)

Back to the t-shirt above. When I see that, I automatically think that whoever believes that doesn’t know the true character of God. To say that God is not in schools is to believe that he is NOT omnipresent.

I’m not trying to be judgmental, although I realize I probably sound that way –and maybe I actually am. But, I’m really trying to point out that when people know you are a Christian, they are watching and listening to what you do and say. And, when you say that God is being controlled by humans, it diminishes your witness.

Finally, there are a lot of people who are sincerely asking the question that the t-shirt asks. Christian, is that the answer you really think that God would give to somebody who is hurting?