How do those two words make you feel? Before this January, I'd never really considered doing a detox. In fact, I've never detoxed. I've never given up any food or drink. Luxuries such as alcohol, sugar, comfort foods and caffeine have been part of my diet as and when I've wanted them. Those two words, January and Detox are something I would have discarded as "not for me".
However, I believe it is through change that we learn, adapt and grow and I'm always open to trying new things. Charley has been training with Fitter London, run by personal trainers and nutritionalists - Keris and Matt - since August. We've been dabbling with recipes from their Fitter Food Cook Book and the Paleo diet since then, which I wrote about in this post. However, since the beginning of December we massively fell off the wagon and pretty much lived on cheese and chocolate in Chamonix over Christmas.
It was time for a reset so when Charley mentioned Fitter London were running a 28-Day Fat Loss Kick-Starter nutrition plan, we signed up.
Before I tell you what's not allowed in the plan, I'm going to start by listing the benefits and the impact they've had on me.
Currently 14 days into the plan, here are my Top 5 benefits listed in order of how valuable they are to me:
1. Waking up feeling energised
6am my alarm goes off and I'm out of bed after only 1 hit of the snooze button. 5 days a week for the last 2 weeks. Not feeling sluggish in the mornings and being motivated to get my training done before work has a huge impact on my outlook and what I'm able to get done that day. Tick!
2. Weight Loss
I've lost 3.5 kgs in weight in 14 days. I've also been training 4 times a week so will be gaining in muscle mass too. I don't feel bloated, my muscle definition is returning, my stomach is flatter. All things that make me feel great in the morning. If I feel great, well that's a pretty huge part of having a good day and a massive tick for me.
3. Enjoying the mental challenge
Not one to shy away from a challenge, I've really enjoyed the test of resetting my eating habits. There's a big difference between "want" and "need" but I seem to get these confused and tell myself I need certain things a lot more than I actually do. It's been very interesting to see how my body performs on this diet and understanding what I need to perform.
4. Cooking and trying new food
It's taken a lot of planning and team work between Charley and I but we've definitely enjoyed our increased time in the kitchen. The nutrition plan takes you through different stages, so the first week is mainly soups and green smoothies to reset your system. Later, foods get re-introduced and it feels like a real treat to have something that you previously would have taken for granted, like berries or chicken. It's been an opportunity to try new things - haven't eaten fish for over 15 years and have eaten it 4-5 times per week for the last 2 weeks! Also loving beetroot and that's new.
5. Saving money
The last one has to be saving money. Another bonus, especially with it being January. We've saved about £30 a week each on food, not including the money saved on not drinking alcohol.
Now onto the diet itself.. what does it involve?
Lots of greens! Green smoothies, green tea, green soups, fresh fish, turkey, vegetables, sweet potato and avocado all with lots of herbs and spices.
The things you won't find in the plan are sugar, alcohol, caffeine, dairy, processed foods, pork and chicken (although the latter is re-introduced on day 11)
The biggest challenge...
...not being able to celebrate things like moving out of our home after 3 years. It was our last night there on Friday and normally we would toast with a glass of champers! Once I got over my sugar cravings, it hasn't been an issue and I don't drink caffeine so am lucky on that one.
Results are the biggest motivation for me, making the choice to eat well an easy one.
I am looking forward to re-introducing some of the treats that I love, I'll be doing my best to stick to my 90/10 rule though.
What I really love...
... is having structure and goals to my healthy eating plan. Just wanting to eat healthy because it's January doesn't cut the mustard with me.
Want to find out more?
The plan costs £56 and for that you get a full 28 day plan with 3 meals a day. You also get a cook book with all the recipes in it and weekly webinars to find out what's in store for the week ahead, during which Keris and Matt explain the why behind the food you're eating. There's also a Facebook group where everyone on the plan shares their experiences and can ask any questions to the extremely knowledgeable and lovely Fitter London team.
If you are interested to find out more, check them out: http://www.28dayfatlosskickstarter.com/28-day-fat-loss-kick-starter/ there's another plan starting in Feb.