Sunday, 23 September 2012

Getting Deep: My eating disorder.

I'm writing this under the influence of a few random things: the height of my hormone issued low, gifted to me once a month by a few issues relating to disbalanced hormones related to my cycle, what I hope to be the end of a binge day, and some deep self reflection on things like, where I'm at, where I want to be and both the things I want as they are and the ones I want to change.

I have an eating disorder. Have for a very long time.

It comes around now and again. At least now I've come to the point where it isn't overwhelming my mind at all times of the day. It has affected other parts of my life of course, like body image and self worth, which was hell when I was a teen, but now I know the true worth of who I am and value it much more than what I think I look like.

That was a major turn around point for me. And I think that it can be for anyone else that feels this way.

I've come to a point where I feel like I can beat this. I thought I already had, but that was more me trying to convince myself than anything else. I feel like as long as every time I fall, I kick myself in the ass and just get back to what I know is best, I can maybe just be satisfied with the physical part of me. I think that having stopped beating myself up every time I don't do it perfect, every time I stumble, that getting rid of feeling guilt or regret over what I eat, was one of the most loving gifts I ever gave myself. Of course, it still happens, but I tend to catch it quick enough before it does any damage.

When I look inside myself, I love what I see, even the flaws, even the less than pretty things about myself. I would love to feel that way about my body, and hey there are even some moments that I almost do! There are moments that I forget, I forget that I have these kind of thoughts. I forget that I used to let them control me.

Now most of the time, that's how it is. It's nothing but a memory. But sometimes the thoughts come back. I fall, I tumble and I'm hard on myself for letting it happen. But then again, they happen less and less as I heal, as I face my fears, as I learn the deep down whys of it all. Instead of hiding away from the feelings, sometimes I let myself feel them, explore them as if they weren't my own and I begin to understand them, soothe them and tuck them away in a place where they belong: the past.

I am so grateful to have discovered the raw vegan lifestyle. As much as the food aspect of it work wonders for me, it's the rest of it that has helped me the most. The opening of emotions, the raw feeling that makes you feel everything instead of numbing it all. The deepness of emotion. The love that opens up your heart to so much more than you ever thought possible. The change in perspective about what actually matters is huge. It's an awakening that scares most people, I actually think that it's what has most people permanently falling off the wagon. Because most people would rather be numb. I was once upon a time, one of them. But I seriously wouldn't go back if someone offered me all the riches of the world.

Now I know who I am, I know (mostly) what I want. I know that sometimes I have weaknesses, sometimes I'm strong and sometimes I don't know. But what matters the most is that I will never give up, I will always be kind and I will always get back up. After all, there is no such thing as can't. No impossible.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Woodstock Fruit Festival 2012


Now 2 days after the last day of WFF 2012, I'm still awed by the amazing vibe of such an incredible event. First off, many many thanks got to the people that made it all happen. Micheal Arnstein started it all and many others made it the incredible life-changing event that it became. They are the true pionneers of this movement and deserve so much gratitude and appreciation.

I'm going to try to find the words to describe it. I don't think there's truly words to do this, EPIC comes close but it misses the deep connection, the crazy positive vibes, the out-of-this-word amazing people, the durian parties, the inspiring and inflamming talks...

I went there not exactly knowing what to expect. I wanted to connect with like minded people, learn as much as I could, do some personal work involving decisions on what I was going to do next and other things. I did all this and more, I truly discovered what I wanted, I discovered what a true community is, what it feels like to be truly accepted and accepting of everyone around me. It's an incredible feeling to know that, to feel that.

At WFF, there is a sense of how the world really should be. That simple, and that amazing.

I think that the event is truly leading the way to change. I strongly suggest to anyone who is anyone, no matter your background, diet, views, and feelings about the lifestyle, to sign up and see what it's all about. I say this because it's a place of true discovery, where everyone is invited to be exactly who they are and nothing else. To try something that may seem INSANE. I thought it was. Then I tried it. And I am never turning back.

I spent my day training with the likes of Dr. Graham, Ellen Livingston and others, barefoot hiking, swimming in the lake, having picnics for every meal on the grass, listening to speakers on so many topics, stargazing, playing and discovering. I got high on Durian, and bonked, sounding like a insane person because I wasn't getting enough sleep (too excited and too much to do, but that was just me ignoring my body's limits, a lesson learned!). I slept under the stars one night, a night definitely to be remembered.

Although I forgot to take pictures, I have so many memories permanently engraved in my mind.

So, now I say, I hope to see you all there next year.

Actually, I'm expecting it!!!

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Walking the Talk: Day 10

I almost can't believe it's already been 10 days since the beginning of my summer challenges! Things have settled in and routine has taken over at this point. Eating fruit makes me feels absolutely amazing. Eating tons of it, even more so!!

Taste the rainbow :P
It seems that the more often I go 100%, the easier it gets. I had some detox symptoms that we're annoying at first, like the headaches. But now the detox has become more of a background noise, drowned out by the awesomeness that is being a high carb raw vegan. 

I'm not sure about weight loss, I weighed myself on day 2, but wont be doing it again until after day 30. I'm much more focused on inches and feel. That being said, I've already lost 1.5 inches off my waist! I feel stronger from training consistently, but I still feel like I can do more fitness wise. My goal for the next 10 days is to really push it on the training, running 3x a week and strength 5-6x a week. 

The best thing of it all? The clearness of mind. Brain fog isn't only annoying, it really prevents you of being the best you can be. My candida definitely didn't help with that either! I barely feel my usual symptoms of that as well, basically it's under control. 

Just like DR always says: take care of the essentials: Sleep, Sugar, Water. With those in sufficient quantity, you can take on anything.

Fruit on!

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Summer 2012 Challenges!

If you've read through my blog before, you would know that I love to take on x day challenges. I thrive in those environments!Especially when it's with other people, the support and the accountability, as well as my inner stubbornness, make for a great and awesome 30 or 40 days.

So this summer there are 2 that I am currently accomplishing.

The first is a 30 day 80/10/10, high carb low fat raw vegan challenge with Freelee from She has been a massive inspiration to so many people, including me. There are over 800 people taking on her challenge and the group is amazing! People from every background are attending, directly from SAD all the way to the high fat raw foodists and some 811 peeps too!

Everyone has a thread on the facebook event and posts their daily food, exercise, feeling, water and sleep. The ones who will post everyday for 30 days, not only succeed their goal but get to have freelee's next ebook as well.

Freelee's awesome b/a pics

We're on day three of this challenge and I feel amazing already. I really needed this extra push to get back into raw, where I feel my best! I'll be taking some before pics today and post them this week :)

The second challenge, which started at the same time, is a 40 day fitness challenge with my awesome friend Fruitilicious Jules! Basically a physical challenge while being raw, the goal is to get fit! Same postings as the other group but with a bigger emphasis on exercise.

These are my first 2 posts:

Day One almost done this side :)

I ran 3k in morning and did 20 mins of squats, crunches, lunges and plank in the evening.

Half a large watermelon
5 x-large banana smoothie
4 large nana and 2 med papaya smoothie
Large salad with tomato and 1/3 avo

2 liters of water

8.5 hours of sleep

Was intending a stronger workout at the gym but decided to stay home instead. I might still have another meal to end the day, since I'm only at 2300 cals right now :) Feeling great and excited about experiencing this challenge with everyone!

Day 2!!

Exercise: 1.5 hours at the gym. 103 flights of stairs, 11.2K on the bike, 32 assisted pullups, arm routine and some ab work.

Breakfast: 6 cups of grapes and 2 cups local strawberries
Lunch: 2x 7 large banana smoothie
After Workout: 4 large bananas
Dinner: Rainbow Chard Salad with tomato sauce and 3/4 of an avo
Calories: 3,422

Water: 3 Liters

Sleep: 9 hours

I had a great day :) Upping the cals and pushing more in my workout definitely helped my mood and overall feeling.

Day three is going great so far :) I was experiencing some headaches and craving the first day, which got better the second day and are now gone.

I'm really happy that these challenges came around at exactly the right time for me! Ask and you shall receive. Positive thinking is the key, as is the law of attraction!

Have a fruitastic day!

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

My Favorite Fitness Tools of the moment.

Fitness regimes can include the most minimal tools to the elaborate and complicated. My fitness routine is always changing, but I think that there are still a few things that are universal to good form and great workouts. I've been very consistent in my workouts lately and there are a few things that I can truly say helped get to working out 5-6 times a week, and wanting to do them.

Footwear is definitely number one in my books. Although I am very curious about barefoot running, working out in the gym requires some form of footwear. These were a birthday present to myself and I've put them to good use! It's amazing the difference that a fitted appropriate for you feet pair of shoes can make. My knees no longer hurt and neither do my feet. Having high arches I always thought that I needed then supported when really I needed neutral shoes with appropriate cushioning. I say that the investment is without a doubt worth it. My next purchase in this department will be five finger shoes, to try out the barefoot running style. I think that going to a dedicated fitness store with people who know what they're talking about and who can really help you with fit is anyone's best bet to an awesome pair of shoes.

Next on my newly discovered but now essential list are compression sleeves or socks. I always had issues with my calves "seizing" up after a really good run and it discouraged me from pushing harder. Turns out I have circulation issues from having been sedentary. These have made my workouts easier to recover from and no more tight calves!

Properly fitting clothes are without a doubt much better to work out in. Being comfortable at the gym should be much more important than the latest fashion or fitting into a certain size. I prefer shorts and sleeveless tops, and I make sure to have the appropriate support for the girls as well. This means a running bra for running, a sports bra at the gym or hiking, etc and maybe just a built-in for yoga or the like.

This one gets a ton of use in my fitness regiment, not only do I use my yoga mat for yoga itself, but also to do calisthenics, quick workouts and stretching. It's also great to sit on for meditation.

Having a set of weights or elastic bands are great to have around when you feel like focusing on specific muscles or want to add resistance to some body weight exercises. I like using them mostly for arm and chest workouts.

Those are  really the basics, the next ones are not necessarily essential. But they are my current "obsessions".

 I've become seriously acquainted with the stepper at my gym. I always climb a minimum of 1000 steps, up to 2000. It's my favorite workout at the moment and boy does it get me sweating! 

Ever since I trained for the rowing team, I've loved the rower as a full body cardio workout. Learning the proper form was a godsend and I've been pushing it on this machine ever since!

The rest of my workouts consist of yoga classes, strength training with either body weight exercises, free weights or the machines at the gym, tons of cardio including the two above as well as cycling and running. It's going very well for me because of the variety that I include in my schedule. I feel stronger and fitter, and it only gets better from here! 

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Working it: Some before and afters.

For the last little while, I have been working my butt off.

Not only have I started coaching and training a few of my friends, I have been working extra hours trying to finish a few other projects of mine, including a very detailed grant proposal for my vegan prepared food business (cross fingers). I've also been writing again, and have a few other projects that side of things.

I have been so fortunate with the whole coaching side of things, where a few of my friends have approached me to start then on a health plan. It's inspired me to truly start working on the structure of my coaching and giving me the opportunity for trial and error. So far it has been going great! The one I started with is in week 3 of training and lost 8 pounds in the first week! She has already regained energy and is working so hard! We are working hard to get her to her goals and I'll be posting pictures and updates over the next few months.

I love it too because it's got me on a a vigorous workout routine as well, and I've been feeling great! I am testing all my methods on myself as well, following a holistic approach. I'm feeling great! I'm staying away from the scale for now, because since we are doing alot of strength training, numbers really don't mean much at this point.

I am working out 5-6 times a week for an hour everytime. We mix it up alot, doing tons of cross training from calisthenics, lots of cardio (running, biking, steps, rowing, hiking), yoga and some free weights. I've found a new obsession with the stepper, pushing it hard. I think I may register for the CN tower climb next year!

I want to add to this picture soon:
The first is summer of 2009 and the second, summer 2011. I want my summer 2012 picture to be even better than the change between those two!

I also made a before collage of pictures.

I am so very grateful to have discovered the 80-10-10 lifestyle. As you can see, I was not the picture of health. I was living a lifestyle of bad foods, partying and little exercise. I was unhappy and had a list of health issues including IBS, chronic pain, anxiety, debilitating PMS, low energy and insomnia. Now, most of those are gone. I still have some work to do to attain the level of health that I am aiming for, but the changes so far have been amazing!

I have rediscovered my passion for life. I have discovered my passion in life as well. I want to help people become the best they can be through veganism, raw foods and a balanced holistic lifestyle.

I will be posting updated after pictures over the summer. I am seriously going to be working hard and get to where I want to be!!!

Keep it fruity ;)

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Great Reasons to go... Raw with the Bra

Sometimes, there are certain things that you absolutely know that can promote better health in your life, short and long term, that just don't seem to sink in until a while later. While not always terrible, I think that it's something that we've definitely been taught to do. Being in the process of unlearning alot of things, I do try to take change one thing at a time so that I can really put it into practice. Becoming a raw bra person has been one of them.

I decide to try it out today, out in the real world. I had been progressively wearing bras less and less over the past few weeks and finally decided to just do it. I actually had a great experience. I was much more aware of my breasts due to some sensitivity, especially during certain situation like in the car and while sitting. Although I think the last is a great one because it'll help me be aware of my posture more.  I simply wore a black cotton tank top and really never felt totally weirded out by it. I think that it'll become part of my daily habits, other than at the gym and with certain clothes.

So why become a raw bra person? 

There is significant enough reasoning behind the movement, number one being that it restricts the lymph system. Seeing as it cannot drain itself and relies on movement to do so, bras restrict movement in the chest area and so fluids that need to be drained often aren't. This is believed to be a cause of blockages in the lymph system which can lead to lumps, diseases and cancers. 

In my mind, it's better to prevent than have to deal with that kind of news.

I knew bras could cause these issues before, but seeing as I am rather chesty at 36D, I thought that it wasn't really in the books for me with various reasons (*cough* excuses) like being scared of sagginess and social convention. Seeing as I'm getting farther and farther away from social convention, and honesty don't care much about it, I figured I should make the next step! Besides, who are we fooling, bras are damn uncomfortable!

Another factor to mention is that since 8 out of 10 women aren't even wearing the "right" bra size, nobody can argue the fact that it cannot be natural or in any way instinctual for us to constrict our chests any more than it was for women who used to wear corsets. Wearing a bra too small, which is the bigger problem in regard tof it, can disfigure breast and cause even more health issues.

Obviously there are situations where wearing a bra is useful, like while exercising or certain social situations. I think that there is definitely a way to make it work is most situations, by using pasties, layering clothes or wearing clothes with built-in bras that are much less restrictive. I'll write an update on how it goes for me in the next few weeks.

I have a certain lady to thanks for finally making the plunge, she created a Facebook group called the Raw Bra Club which I joined earlier this week and is shock full of great information about going raw bra including her personal experiences. So thanks Drew! (I was also a somewhat lazy blogger and grabbed all these awesome pics off the Facebook page)

Monday, 7 May 2012

Feeling the L O V E

Some of the best things in life happen when you least expect them, and in my mind always at the perfect moment. I had been meaning to join a vegan meetup in my city that gets together once a month for a while now, but somehow kept missing it. I think that going this time around was perfect. I met some awesome people, and it's crazy how, as a vegan, or any other minority group really, you get so used to being just that, a minority. Other than online, I have few friends that are vegan, even fewer that have been vegan longer than I have. So going to this event was amazing, The energy was great the conversation very stimulating and just all around comfortable to be every little bit yourself. As much as I am undeniably myself at all times, it's not often that every facet can be revealed. This was one of those times and all I could feel was love.

I had sort of forgotten how much it changes things to be surrounded by like minded people, how much it can uplift and assure you that you aren't alone in your immediate surroundings, that you are working for something amazing and that total strangers can be loving, accepting and beautiful.

Feeling truly accepted and loved is a beautiful, gorgeous should be everyday thing. In our modern society we tend to judge and label alot. I am absolutely a culprit of it, as we all are. We label ourselves just as much as we do others, we criticize ourselves based on what society deems to be acceptable, beautiful, successful, normal, etc. What if we actually surrounded ourselves with a community of love and understanding? Where honesty is preached and we learn from others being honest about what they think and feel so that no one has to bottle up not only their own thought processes and feeling of themselves, but those of society as well. I think that from this only progress could come. 

Honesty coming from a place of love can absolutely still be seen as harsh and be misinterpreted. But in the end, the thoughts brought to light through it and the growth that can result from it are worth the risk of being seen as harsh. 

Surrounding yourself with people who will help you grow into the best you that you can possibly be is, in my eyes, so vitally important. Coming from a place of positivity and love makes it so much easier to go on with our life's ambitions and become successful in our own personal ways. Of course, being a positive and loving person first and foremost to other people will attract and transform people. 

So put a smile on your face, tell everyone how much they mean to you and that you love them. 

That in itself, will change the world, one person at a time.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Keeping it Clean and Simple: Home Edition

Lately I've been finding myself looking into and putting into practice clean, eco-friendly and fruity lifestyle friendly ways to keep my home clean. I've been using the green and bio-degradable products that we can now find basically anywhere fora few years and as much as they work well, I want simpler and cleaner than that. I've become greatly interested in DIY everything, I find myself shopping around and grabbing things that look interesting only to put them back because, I can just do it myself!

The DIY movement is nothin new, but to me it's definitely the best way one can get truly green be sure of the safety of the products used to clean my direct environment. Nobody wants to be breathing in fumes of questionnable ingredients that can be found even in products that are advertised as green.

My number one favorite thing in this category is Soap Nuts:

1. Simply they are a dried fruit that cause suds in water. Completely natural and they work great!I use them for my laundry but I have heard of other that use them for everything from hair washing to cleaning around the house. Bonus is that they are very affordable, 6 nuts last 3-6 loads. You can find them in most health food stores.

2. Next one is an easy DIY cleaner that can be used universily in our home. Simply grab some leftover citrus rinds and let them soak in vinegar for up to two weeks. Strain out the oranges and compost them. Dilute the vinegar mixture with a 2:1 water ratio and voila! Your own homemade cleaner!

3. To make a disinfectant so that you don't need bleach, mix 2 cups of water with tea tree oil and some Dr Bronners castile soap.

4. In the kitchen, the best thing to clean and disinfect wood cutting board is half a lemon rubbed all over and left to sit for a few hours, then rinsed off. It even takes out onion and garlic smells.

5. Baking Soda makes for a great scrubber, just dust it on any surface and scrub with a wet cloth.It's also great as a drain declogger, just pour half a cup down your drain and follow with boiling water to was it all down.

I remember the days when everyone thought clean meant the strong smell of bleach or other chemicals, I never understood it, because of chemical sensitivities the smell was always such a bother to me. And if anyone is still looking for something similar because they've just been convinced by the norm, just tell them to wash everything with straight up vinegar!

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Top 5 ways to get and stay on track.

Most of the time the only reasons things don't span out as you want them to, is because of a lack of organization and a not-so defined focus on the reasons and goals of a certain project, new habit, workout schedule, etc. I know that for me there are many things that I can do to set myself up for success or failure. The key is to really know where you want to be and how exactly you are going to get there. Here are my top 5 tips to get and stay on track:

1. Write it down. Be it on a piece of paper, a notebook, a file on your computer. Basically whatever works best for you. I primarily use lists written on my computer in a file that is always open. I also like using paper lists of goals I want to acheive in a certain period of time (like in 3 months) and pin it up somewhere that I am going to see it every day so that I have another constant and mostly subconscious reminder of what I want.

2. Make a vision board. This is the time to let out our inner craftsmanship and get busy with magazines, colored paper, markers and glue. It doesn't have to be perfect and it's for your eyes only anyways. Making it vibrant and noticeable is key here because you want it to be as noticeable as possible so that your eye is drawn to it every tie you pass. This enables you to keep these goals at the forefront of your mind and makes an idea and goal much more tangible.

3. Talk about it as if it is happening, even if it isn't. Being vocal about your dreams and goals enables you to bring them to the realm of the possible. Affirming it will help you acheive it because you are basically motivating yourself by convincing yourself that it is already started, usually the hardest part about any changes. Keep your words and thoughts positive, even if you tumble off track a bit, just get back up and continue trekking on.

4. Ask for help and advice, or even just a few opinions. This will keep you on track in the aspect of not only having others opinions, but also affirming your own. Just make sure you have someone that you can talk to that will carry the conversation on a positive note, and be ready for some constructive criticism.

5. Be accountable. This one depends on what works best for you as an individual. As an example, when I write lists, I make it a point to have to get everything done that I write down. If for some reason it isn't done on the day I wrote it to be, I keep an afternoon a week to get done what wasn't accomplished during the week. It works for me because I get pleasure in highlighting tasks that got done!

All these things keep me on track for getting er done. If I don't do them, I tend to get sidetrack and disorganized where I waste time and don't get much done, which in turn is unmotivating in itself!

Have a great week!

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast Day 6 and the days that followed.

Day 6 was actually my last day fasting. I felt like it was time late that evening and had a couple bananas as my first meal back on solids. They we're carefully chewed and through fully enjoyed! I don't think I've gone 6 days without them in a very very long time. I think that this will be be my last juice fast for a while. I did get some good things out of it, but really I want to wait until I can truly give it my all before attempting it again. This means time to relax and sleep, not being too busy, time to meditate for hours if I really feel like it, etc.

I stumbled quite a bit on the reintroduction of solids, since I had some steamed rice on day 2, with some homemade tomato sauce. I've been keeping it extremely simple though, since any kind of complex meal just upsets my stomach, as it should.

I find that I've been sleeping much more since coming off the fast. Where before I found myself waking up easily after 7 hours, now I get through 9 easily. I'm not really complaining at all, I know that my body needs it. On day 6 itself I was in bed by 7:30PM and only woke up 12 hours later, only to sleep another 2 hours! I am going to bed much earlier and getting up just a tiny bit earlier as well, which was something I did want to start doing anyways, this saves me going through a schedule change gradually.

I am back to a low fat, very high raw high carb diet, with the grand majority of things being fruit. The only meal that I've been wanting and eating that is cooked is rice. I could easily like on bananas and rice right now! I think that as long as I stay away from processed anything and high fat anything, and keeping all my meals very very simple, I am very happy with the way things have progressed.

I lost a total of 8 pounds while fasting, regained 4lbs in the past few days, which is totally normal and expected. Now as long as I keep my diet in line with my desires, and get back into exercising daily I will be continuing on the trend I've set with the fast.

Overall I have to say that I am happy with the way things have come together. I feel better, my candida symptoms have diminished greatly, I lost a little weight, I love my juicer and I am back on track just like I set out to be!

Life loves you back when you give it some effort and some dedication :)

Have a great day!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast: Day Five!

I woke up this morning feeling great! I had to get up for a short period during the night to use the facilities but other wise had a very restful night. My brain fog had started to lift significantly from when I woke up until now, I have a clearer mind right now than I've had in a while. I have been feeling significantly better these past few days than the first three. Barely any hunger, although many many cravings.

I spent the major part of the day driving to and from Montreal to pick up a friend at the airport and so did get my juices and water in easily. But as soon as I got home I was tired and set out to take a short nap... that lasted about 3 hours. Although I woke up feeling rested, my body decided it was time to have some nausea and cramps, which I quickly found out was a BM coming into play.  Straight afterwards I was feeling so good! Getting rid of all that toxic waste is so important.

Back to cravings, although I am feeling very good, I am getting the urge to break my fast already. I'm not entirely sure if it's just detox speaking so I am waiting at least another day to see if the feeling subsides. I didn't think that I would be feeling this so early on. But like I set out to do, the first thing I am doing right now is listening to my body. I am giving it as much rest as it is asking for and plenty of fluids and movement when asked for as well! The things that I've been craving aren't entirely terrible though, mostly salad, random fruits and rice. All low fat and non junk food related.

My goals for this fast have actually been pretty well accomplished. My candida symptoms are almost non-existent, my eating is going to be much cleaner now that I'm not craving the junk as much if at all. I've lost some weight, but really I just wanted to kick start it again to get back to raw, which will have me truly achieving my goal in that regard. My liver seems happier and will be even more so when the herbs help it out. Bowel movements are really important when detoxing the lover so I wanted to wait until after I was done fasting to really help it along.

I am dedicated to break my fast properly this time around. Last year around this time I broke my fast the wrong way, by just giving in to what I thought was hunger and just chowing down on a huge complex meal. I will be eating only fruit and greens, as I've planned to do so mostly forever more. I'll be keeping it extremely simple for at least the first week and then go from there. I am thinking that I will be breaking my fast on Sunday, making it 7 days total. It's been sounding right to me since I've had the thought come into my mind. As much as I wanted to do longer, I think that this being my third juice fast ever, and my longest as of right now, I'm better off keeping it short and sweet and doing it longer next time around. I will be continuing a detox regiment after i break my fast by taking some liver cleansing herbs followed by a full body detox for 30 days. I'll be cleaned out by the time summer comes around!

I also can't wait to start doing vigorous workouts again. I have the urge to move and get outside, but haven't been pushing myself too much over the past days because my body wanting little to do with it.

Tomorrow is another beautiful chance to make positive changes. Enjoy!

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast: Day Four!

One of the best things in this world is to wake up knowing you've had amazing sleep. I got a great 9 hours in last night and it's just what I needed! As much as juice fasting while living a normal schedule (well as normal as my schedule gets) works fine, making sure that one is getting enough sleep an rest is so important all the time. I don't know anyone who can function truly optimally without waking up feeling rested and rejuvenated from a good night's sleep.

So after that great start, I actually had a pretty good day! I actually had enough time to make my juice for the day and walk calmly to work for my 9 hour shift. It went by as usual, a little slow but actually enjoyable. Nice thing was that my brain fog lifted as the day went on, quite the opposite from the first three days. I started the day very mucus-y, and still have some, but again it diminished throughout the day. Now I have a certain sense of happiness and balance permeating my world. 

My only concern is that I haven't had a bowel movement since end of day 2. I've had IBS for a very long time and get uncomfortable when I dont have a few a day! So I had a laxative tea earlier. I wouldn't actually recommend this, since it'll just irritate my bowels in the end, but having a BM will give me that last ounce of peace of mind that's been creeping up on me throughout the day. 

So for todays juice extravaganza I consumed:

Spinach-Carrot-Apple 1L
Pear-Blackberry 1L
Red Grape 1L
Water 2L
Kombucha 355mL
Tea 250mL

In the morning I'm going on a roadtrip to and back from montreal to pick up my BFF from the airport. I think that no schedule change should ever keep you from accomplishing what you decided to do. So I'll be bringing some delish juices along and tryyyyy not to have to stop for washroom breaks tooooo often. Try being the word. 

Have a gorgeously fruity day! 

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast: Day Three!

Soooo I almost forgot to post tonight! I've given myself the gift of a veryyy relaxing evening cuddling with my dogs and was just about to turn the lights off!

Ok so today went somewhat better than yesterday! Good news indeed. I still had physical detox symptoms, like the uneasiness and a little nausea this morning, plus brain fog most of the day. Otherwise I was in a better mood.

I'm hoping that it gets better from day 4 on, simply because I don't know how long I can take this eurk feeling right now. Especially with it being Easter weekend, full of family events and having already committed to making dinner for my family on Saturday. I know I can do it, the thing I really need to work on is having the patience to go through it and not get impatient with my body doing what needs to be done. This shall be my lesson to work on most for tomorrow.

I haven't really gotten into my emotional and spiritual reasons for doing a spring cleanse yet, but that is sure to come as I feel the detox working on those areas of life. When I do a juice fast, it really breaks one down to the roots. You have no food to hide behind, little distractions from you are really thinking, what you are really feeling. It's a truly 100% raw experience to bare it all. Raw food to some extent does the same, but I think that getting down to the bone of it all happens at it clearest during a fast of some sort. I can't even imagine how purifying a water fast can be, but it is something I would like to experience sometime in the future.

Today I had:
Parsley-Carrot-Orange 1L
Pineapple 1.5L
Pineapple-Blackberry 500mL
Double Shot Wheatgrass
Water 3L

I am going to try to space out my juices more throughout the day, seems like right now I am either splitting it out more to one side or the other between morning and evening. The wheatgrass reallllyy had me feeling it too, so a single shot next time is going to be more than enough!

I am feeling detox in other ways too. As an example, I usually only need to shower every 2-3 days, but now I really feel the need to have at least one a day. Also, no BM today, which I'm not too happy about, but it's all part of the process.

Tomorrow is another juicy, vibrant day. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast: Day Two!

Blah. Exactly how I feel right this moment. Detox is coming on strong this evening. I was feeling decent all day, but when dinner time came around, Cranky Bunny made it's appearance. Looks like it was a good choice to get started on a cleanse! Cause with these symptoms I certainly needed it!

Basically I feel like utter poo. If you've ever seriously cleansed before, it's that general eurk feeling that just takes over and makes you want to hibernate for a few days. OK so I may be being a little dramatic... I've only been feeling this way for the evening, so really living regular life while doing this works out fine. Did I mention I was cranky?

My favorite thing to do during the first few days of cleansing is snuggle in front of a good movie before bed. This way I'm comfortable and distracted, making the whole process of day 1-3 a breeze for me and those around me.

I might have pushed myself a little too much today too, I started my prep for my garden. This meant about an hour of sweating and shoveling compacted soil.It was a whim of the moment type deal. I'm happy I started on it though! I'm late starting my very first garden :) Can't wait to start growing and harvesting! Mmmmm heirloom tomatoes...

Ok back to cleanse talk. I had a lesser variety of juices today and that worked out better than yesterday.

Beet-Kale-Apple (1L)
Pineapple (1.5L)
Papaya-Mango (750mL)
Water (3L)

I also did my usual morning routine of Sun Salutations and meditation. I think that it's really going to help me along this adventure and keep me balanced, not to mention a great way to start any day!

Let's finish this day with:

Monday, 2 April 2012

Spring 2012 Juice Feast: Day One!

There are so many reasons to cleanse. In our society saturated with chemicals, from the polluted air we breathe to all the additives in our foods, not to mention the pesticides used to grow alot of it. Even if you eat only organic and raw foods, there are so many chemicals that we are subjected to on a daily basis that our bodies were never designed to deal with.

My personal reasons for cleansing are:

1. I haven't been eating as well as I should and I know that juice feasting is always a good way for me to get back to clean pure foods.
2. I always cleanse in Spring, always the best time for me :)
3. I have so weight to lose and it's being stubborn.
4. Reason for stubborn weight is my candida issues, which juice feasting will definitely help with!
5. I have an awesome juicer.
6. I have toxin buildup from past bad habits, like smoking, drugs and too much bad foods.
7. My liver has been complaining lately.

I've actually already started having detox symptoms, tongue coating, general detox feeling, cravings and fatigue. The first three days are always the worst, if you can get to day four, you are set to go on a great cleanse. All it takes is keeping your goals in mind! Basically, mind over matter.

I'm so happy to be able to make my own juices! Although I already made on I just couldn't finish. Note to self, celery is strong!

Today I had:
- Kale-Carrot-Orange (1L)
- Black Grape (1L)
- Tomato-Celery-Cucumber (500mL)
- Royal Gala Apple (750mL)
- 2.5 Liters of water

So moving on to day 2! I am so very happy I started this on a day I'm not working. I also have tomorrow to get myself used to it all, then Wednesday is a long day at work then a dinner training, to which I will bringing my own juice!

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Let's do this!

So it's that time of year again. The one where I get down to business and get in a super cleanse. Last year I did an OJ mono-cleanse that lasted all of 5 days, because I just couldnt drink anymore of it more than anything. Also, all I had was a citrus juicer. This year, things are different! With having purchased a masticated juicer that works amazzinngly, I will be undertaking a Juice Feast!

I'm not 100% sure how long its going to last, I've come to the conclusion that just going with the flow and listening to my body would be the best way to go about it. That being said, I do want to accomplish at least 14 days. But I am going to try to keep in mind that my body signals come first.

I am going to be mixing it up and doing all kinds of juices, starting with a green juice first thing in the morning and then as much fruit juice as I are for, with at least 2 liters of filtered water throughout the day.

I am going to try and post every day, with juice recipes, how I'm feeling and all that jazz!

Here we go!

Monday, 19 March 2012

Hello Sunshine.

It has been such an amazing weekend, the sun is out and we've had crazy warm weather! All week is calling for the same, low to mid twenties (Celsius) and it almost looks like we've skipped thrugh spring and gone straight to summer! I've been wearing dresses and shorts all weekend and will be continuing that allllll week!

I really did get my juicer at the perfect time, summer and fresh juice just got hand in hand! I got some massive cantaloupes and juiced one, which gave me 1.5 liters of deliciousness to enjoy in the morning sun!
I'm right in the middle of moving at the moment, so lots to do. Packing and moving are providing me with great exercise in combination with yoga and my meditation practice that I'm continuing on with. The new place is also very close to a great bike/running path, which means awesome running for me! I'm going to be purchasing my very first officially real running shoes and water pack so that I can actually get into it. I was going to be running a 5k, but then moving made things complicated and when I get busy, I lose track of running because it does take up more time. I have to fix that bad habit of mine!

In other news, I finally got my hands on a good water filtering system. The perks of my job include buying at an extremely discounted price when customers return things that can't necessarily be resold, like this water system:
I love it for many reasons, one being the water tastes great! We have one in the store so I've been sipping at it for a few months now. It has a 8 step process, first a carbon filter, then a 5 step filtration through various natural filters then at the bottom are remineralizing rocks and finally the spout itself has a magnetic function that removes negative ions from the water. I think that having clean water is so important, tap water just does not cut it. Bottled water is expensive and not to mention wasteful. So unless you have direct access to a spring, your best best, imo, is to get something like this. There are a gazillion different models out there, so choosing one is up to personal needs and preference!

Back to packing for this Bunny, have a great fruity week!

Monday, 12 March 2012

Become a JuiceMaster.

Very exciting News! Well it is to me anyways, I got a juicer for my birthday! Oh, and not just any juicer, exactly the one I wanted! A beauty of 11 lbs, with a masticating powerful setup and clean design with small footprint. Here she is:

I think that investing good money in quality appliances, especially on a raw diets, is a not brainer. The best juicers on the market are the masticating type because they keep every nutrient intact during the juicing process. Others, like centrifugal types, heat the juice up with their high RPM's and cause nutrient loss and separation. I think that getting higher quality juice is what's important.

I chose this one because I've seen a very similar one in action and just loved it! My friend Julie, an inspiring woman that you can check out here, is a great advocate of juicing and raw foods, and after tasting juice from hers, I just had to get one.

So for my first test run, I made some yummy grape juice:

... I may have drank it all before I could get a picture of the actual juice. They yield was awesome! Again this morning I made spinach-beet-apple juice that was also amazing :) Only thing is I forgot to change the strainer to the finer one so ended up with a juice that I had to chew, which I normally love with strictly fruit juices, not so much with the green ones.

My morning was great too, did some yoga and meditation, as has become my habit in the morning, plus I woke up to these faces:

Fitness-wise, I've laid off the calisthenics for the last week, and opted for packing and moving as well as some walks and general busyness on account of the awesome weather we've been getting! I should be getting back into running soon enough with outside being much more welcoming!

Every morning I do 10 Sun Salutations and an average of 10 minutes of meditation. It starts off my day on such a great foot and I plan on continuing this forever more. I also realllly need to print out my voucher for 20 yoga classes. I want to get back into it more often, say about 2x a week to start and go from there :)

I am planning on doing a juice feast very soon. Spring is a great time to cleanse and detox, and I think that it will be a great starter to this new season of renewal. I will start with a goal on 14 days and see where I can take it from there. My longest before now was 5 days on only orange juice. I think that with much more variety I can do much longer than that. I will be combining it with a liver cleanse, a herbal mixture with milk thistle and such. I started it not long ago, but haven't finished yet. I can't wait!

Have a great week everyone, and remember to stay fruity!!


Monday, 5 March 2012

New Beginnings, New Habits, Better Living!

Since my life's theme this year seems to be change drastically and permanently, I figured I'd go with the flow and implement some good habits and better routines into my day-to-day life. Sometimes I forget that health is a balance of many things and only concentrate on food and fitness, when water, sleep, emotional balance and spirituality are just as important.

This week I started implementing a morning routine that, so far, is working perfectly. I wake up, check emails and social networking sites, spend time with doggies and let them out. Then I drink 500ml of water and do a little yoga (10 Sun Salutations, pictured below) while drinking another 500ml. Next comes meditation time! I've always loved meditating but lacked the discipline to do it everyday. I've joined a group of people on Facebook who are all doing a 30 day meditation challenge for March, it's crazy how knowing there are other people doing it with you, even though you only know them online, can motivate you so much! The support there is great and just the thing I needed to implement it daily. I plan on continuing this routine forever more, it makes me feel amazing and get my blood flowing and mind balanced from the start of the day!

Sun Salutation
It's my 24th Birthday on Wednesday and I plan on getting the 25th year of life off on the right foot! I will be starting my usual spring cleanse the day after and I am planning on doing a 30 day one, although as usual, my body will decide when I am ready to stop. I also find it much easier to be 100% raw after a cleanse. I just have to truly stick to it this time. I realize that after having cooked food a few times after a 100% bout, I just get lazy and become a creature of habit. I have to implement strategies that will keep me on the path I want to be on. That's my task for the next few days and throughout my cleanse, to find the best ways to keep my goals in mind, to keep visualizing myself successful in this venture.

As per my usual Monday posts, here is my exercise for the past week!

Feb 27th
Mountain climbers
Bicycle crunches
Butt Lifts
Chest fly's
Chest Press

Feb 28th
10 Sun Salutations
10 minutes Meditation
High Knees

Feb 29th
10 Sun Salutations
8 minutes Meditation.
Mountain climbers
Bicycle crunches
Butt lifts
Chest fly's
Chest Press

March 1st
10 Sun Salutations
12 minutes Meditation
OFF day

March 2nd
10 Sun Salutations
 13 Minutes meditation

March 3rd
OFF day
5 minutes meditation

March 4th
10 Sun Salutations
 11 minutes Meditation

My minimum workouts per week now is 3x, I want to get that back up to a minimum of 5 in the next few weeks. I think that I'll just be switching it up more and go to the gym 2x a week, plus the calisthenics that I am already doing. 

Have a great week! Smash it every single day. :)

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Sweet Validation.

Days like this make it feel like all the hard work, sweat and emotional growth are worth it in every single way. I've had days lately where I just didn't see it, looking in the mirror and just being unsatisfied with what I see.It happens to so many of us to see ourselves in distorted ways despite most people telling us we look good! It's a psychological issue that I have dealt with most of my life, even when I was at a lesser weight. I think that most of the time we forget to look at how far we've come instead of where we want to be. 

In the last  weeks I've had 3 pairs of pants fall apart from wear. Pant shopping has never been my favorite thing to do, even when I go with only that in mind, I tend to get frustrated with fit and come home with shirts and underwear instead. Well now, I didn't really have much of a choice! I went to a second hand shop yesterday and again wasnt happy with fit. I found pants that fit very well, but most were boot cut and in my mind just disproportionate my body. Did I mention I was picky about pants? 

I spent the day with my sister-in-law and 7 day old nephew (cutest baby everr) and we passed by a shop I used to go to all the time. I mentioned needed pants and she immediately offered me some for my birthday. Long story short, I found 2 pairs that fit PERFECTLY, and bonuuuus they're a size 7!!!!!

Ahhhh sweeeetttt validationnnnn. Since my goal is to be a size 5 right now, this is awesome awesome news for me and just gave me that extra motivation to kick my own ass and keep working harder and harder. Training this week has been great! I'll write about it in my next post as I've changed a few things up. 

Moral of the story? Keep pushing it. Yes, it hurts. Yes, there will be days where you literally have to beat yourself threw your workout. But! IT. IS. WORTH. EVERY. SECOND. Never give up.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Positive thinking: How about some major changes?

I think that the number one thing that determines whether you will be successful or not is planning ahead. I am definitely a culprit of having issues in that department. Going raw isn't something that most people do overnight, althoug some ahve. It necessitates organization in many areas. Like ALWAYS having ripe high cal fruits around, like mangoes, bananas or dates. I made that mistake a gazillion times, might make it again a few more, but hey I am only human and the biggest thing I care about is that I am always learning and improving.

This past week has been a roller-coaster ride. Some things happened that I never thought would and I've been dealing with some massive emotional growth through it all. It sucks royally, but I've found that I can forgive so much easier than I used to, and that helps so much. When something ends, we tend to always dwell on the ending part instead of the new beginning, sometimes because it seems kinda scary. But I've found that looking towards new possibilities and keeping in mind that my personal dreams haven't changed, just maybe the way some of them will work out. Life is a crazy thing, and there are so many things to be discovered. I think that my journey towards raw has enabled me to grow so much emotionally that I can deal with events that would have had me crumbling in the past.

Positive thinking can get you to places you may have thought impossible! I've really seen the effects of it now and wow it is amazing! There is ALWAYS a way to see things in that light. That being said, anothing that I've discoverd that might be obvious to some, is that it's ok not to be ok for a bit. I've been having ups and downs and letting myself live both without barriers. The healing process is so much easier this way.

That being said, I didnt exercise exactly as I would have wanted to. I did keep busy and moved around alot, went for walks and such, but focused on letting myself heal and rest as I needed.

I am feeling on the better side today, and will definitely be getting back into my routines. I am craving it!

I also just bought a book called Could it be B12? and am loving it so far, I'll write a post about it as soon as I am done to give my review!

Smash it everyday guys!!

Monday, 20 February 2012

Sometimes, you just gotta kick yourself in the ASS.

This past week wasn't my finest moment, I didn't achieve any of the goals I set out to. BUT there is some light in this tunnel.

I've been wanting to update on the whole maca root use and now is the perfect time. I took it for about 2 weeks before I decided it just wasn't for me. I had bought a raw powdered from of it as opposed to the gelatinized version (no gelatin involved, it's just the term they use to say that they took out all the starches) because I really don't believe in processing a food more than just drying it. I stopped taking it because it was giving me massive heartburn. So end of story for that one. Bonus: it was a lesson learned as well, but I am glad I tried it nonetheless.

I have found another solution since, and I've only been doing it for about 4-5 days, but already I can see a difference. Last week I was so exhausted and moody, my typical PMS self. Once I started taking b12 in higher doses (I'm taking 2x 5000mg sublinguals right now), I noticed a HUGE difference in mental clarity, mood and energy levels. They still aren't perfect, but I have not felt this good a few days away from my menses start date in over a year. It's a beautiful thing!

I recently read an article about b12 and how it affected this individual's energy levels and got rid of his depression. I've been prone to depression for as long as I can remember, and now it seems like it will never come back, as long as I keep up with the b12, at least until my body has completely healed itself. I knew I had an issue with b12 because of past bad habits and had been taking it on and off on a regular basis, but the dosage just wasn't high enough to truly make a difference. I am not one for supplements (and I work in a store filled with them) but in this case I definitely make an exception since it really is something that affects most people in this sterile and stressful society.

Other news, I finaly finished my health and fitness vision board!

So goals for this week: 100% fruit fueled, at least 3 workouts. I'm setting a smaller goal simply because it will motivate me to do more.

Have a great week! Keep it real ;)

Monday, 13 February 2012

Finding Solutions: An answer to my symptoms: Candida

Lately I had been thinking that I could not put my finger on what was the true cause of most of my health issues. I knew my symptoms and I was seriously growing frustrated with most of them because I just couldn't solve then with what I was doing. I thought I was eating healthy enough, not perfect but I was getting there, and I was back to consistently exercising, yet I saw 0 results, and this game has been going on for a very very long time, I'd say about 2.5 years or more. I was constantly doing great but getting frustrated because it seemed like nothing was happening, even after months of efforts. I absolutely understand that the journey to best health is a long one, but also just wanted an ounce of progress to let me know I was on the right path.

Now I definitely know why all that was happening. It came in a total euraka moment at work. I was speaking to my coworker (I work in a health food store) and we we're discussing a random topic when she said" You know that creepy feeling, like a mosquito running across your skin, which is a symptom of candida issues?" I didn't know, and I had had that symptom for so long that I just considered it me being paranoid! So I went to look up a list of symptoms:

  • Vaginal Yeast Infection

  •  Constant fatigue

  •  Brain "fog" -hard to focus or even think straight.

  •  Oral Thrush (a white film on tongue or in the mouth)

  • Bad breath, foul taste in mouth

  •  Abdominal pain (intestinal Candida)

  •  Bloating and indigestion

  • Increasing allergies to foods (gluten or celiac problems can be a direct result of Candida overgrowth)

  • Constant craving for something sweet!

  •  Joint pain with arthritis-like symptoms

  •  Chronic sinus drainage -which antibiotics don't help!

  •  Weight gain (or loss) and the inability to change it. 

  •  Fungus on the finger or toe-nails

  •  Itching, red eyes

  •  Candida Skin rashes on the body (eczema, atopic dermatitis)

  •  Candida Rash inside the ears or around the groin area

  •  Anal, penile or vaginal itching

  •  Hair loss

  • Vision problems

  • Depression from feeling so low and bogged down all the time.

  • The highlighted ones are the ones that I'v experienced. Come to think of it, I've probably had candida issues for years, but never knew it. The worst part is, I know about candida, I talk about it with clients all the time, I've read about peoples experiences with them, I knew some of the symptoms, but obviously not all of them. I had always thought when reading or talking about it, that I didn't have that problem and that I was really happy I didn't! SO now I have to deal with it head on because I really can't wait for allllll those symptoms to disappear.

    Candida is basically a yeast that is present in our bodies, it has a place and is good when at healthy levels. But many people have issues with overgrowth, where it flares up because of various causes (like the overuse of antibiotics, use of contraceptive pill, high metal toxicity in the blood, etc) (I am actually unsure of my cause because I've never used antibiotics, but have been on the pill) Most common "cures" would have you cutting out all sugar, because that's what candida feeds on. So there are tons of candida cleanses and special extremely restrictive diets that claim to bring it under control, but usually once the cleanse is over, it comes back with a vengeance and so begins a viscous cycle.  The actual cause of overgrowth in most cases in too much fat in the blood which causes sugar to linger there as well, when the body wants it to be transferred to cells as quickly as possible. Your body doesn't like having sugar hanging about in you blood so when this happens candida flares up and eats it all up. The true solution to candida is to eat a very low fat diet, like 80/10/10. Keeping your fat levels low is what will give long term relief of all candida issues, it's really that simple!

    My plan of action? Going 100% raw of course! Everyone I know of that went raw with prior candida issues had them solved in no time. I've struggled with it in the past and I may still, but now that I have the knowledge of what wrong with my body, I know that it will make it that much easier to keep my resolve. Not having cooked foods is minor compared to the benefits it will give me!

    My training in the last week wasn't as good as I would have wanted it to be, I was fighting a terrible cols thats been lurking in my household for the past 2 weeks and my body was telling me to rest it out, so that's exactly what I did. I still got 3 workouts in though!

    February 5th
    Running in place
    2 min
    2 min
    2 min
    Butt lifts
    60 sec
    60 sec
    60 sec

    February 6th
    4K run/walk in 30 mins (4.75 total)
    High Knees
    60 sec

    February 7th

    February 8th

    February 9th
    K walk/run in mins
    High Knees
    Chest fly
    Chest Press

    February 10th

    February 11th

    In other news, I will be moving in 6 weeks so I'll get some good exercise while packing and sorting through. We actually get the keys 15 days before we move so that we can get everything sorted without to much rush! This week I'll be concentrating in getting at least a 20 minute good sweat everyday to get myself out of this tired funk. 

    Making an effort everyday t move is better than staying on the couch! So my advice to myself and to anyone trying to motivate yourself is that every small effort counts, so if you do a 10 min workout instead of nothing, then you are ahead of the pack!