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How I Survived a 7 Day Cleanse

Polly Pitchford - Sunday, July 06, 2014

I was getting a little further off track than usual. My overall healthy lifestyle of eating whole foods and exercising was getting a little sloppy and those lazy behaviors were effecting my mood and my productivity. I usually maintain an 80/20 lifestyle. That means that 80% of the time I'm walking my talk that I talk about as a motivational speaker on health and wellness, and 20% of the time I'm not. That balance has served me well for many years. Lately, however, my "off track" personality has been winning out. You know the one. The one who tempts you to buy that snack bag of Cheetos, crunchy style.  The one who seduces you into ordering the Creme Brulee. The one who convinces you that it's good to relax with that glass of Pinot Noir.

Here's my honest list of complaints: Interrupted sleep, constipation, sagging energy, foggy brain, non-sparkling whites of eyes, extra poundage, achey joints, and caffeine heart pound. Yuck!

Thank the stars that a long awaited week of cleansing and dextoxing at the Optimum Health Institute in San Diego was going to set me back on track! Most people treat themselves to a trip to Europe or a cruise through the Caribbean but not this girl. All of my adult life I've wanted to go away to a place that took care of my health for me. I couldn't WAIT for the experience! 

Here's how the week in food went: One day of raw, organic lettuce, veggies, sprouts and seed "cheese" followed by 3 days of juicing and the last 3 days served up more raw, organic salads, dehydrated vegetables and more seed "cheese". Oh, did I mention wheatgrass juice and rejuvelac between times? This ain't no fru-fru mani/pedi spa people. This is for those who really want and need to cleanse and detox their bodies.

My personal cleansing experience was one of sleepiness, mild headaches and light headedness for about 3 days.  Itchy patches would appear on my arms and fade quickly (begone toxins!). Gentle, daily exercise and stretching classes took my stiff and achey body and massaged it into a limber, non-achey state.The above-mentioned list of complaints actually cleared up! The edgy feeling of needing to keep busy drifted away by the third day and it was a joy to sit outside in the amazing San Diego climate and talk with fellow guests, read books and write in my journal.  All the classes and services offered were designed for the same purpose: helping to heal our bodies, minds and spirits.  What started out as a purely physical objective transformed into a mind-broadening, heart-opening experience. 

To gain optimal health we need to not only eat healthy foods but we need to nurture a healthy, positive mind and connect to a higher power within.  I will continue my journey with greater awareness, gratitude and joy!

Oh, and losing 8 lbs. wasn't bad either.

For any of you who want to give your digestion a day's rest, here's the juice: Yield @ 2 quarts

  • 1 bunch celery
  • 2 each cucumbers
  • 1 each zucchini
  • 1/4 head green cabbage
  • 1/2 bunch Swiss chard
  • 12 bunch kale
  • 1 cup fresh chopped fennel
  • 1 small piece of fresh ginger
  • any type of sprouts
  • Optional for added sweetness:
  • 1 small red beet
  • 2 carrots


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