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Fit-tastic Update: Cleansing The Mind & Body + Out OF Body Experiences

 Maybe you’ve heard of losing your mind, but have you lost your body?
This happened to me!
Let me tell you about it.

So I started a cleanse 5 days ago. Well, really it’s an elimination diet that is pretty strict. The diet has 3 phases to it and the first 2 days of the diet are liquid- green smoothies to be exact. I’ve done an elimination diet before, but not as extreme of a diet as the one that I’m doing this time. Maybe I shouldn’t use the word extreme, but it’s more strict in any case and honestly there’s been part of me that can’t believe how well this is going with the program.

Don’t get me wrong, I have my off days, I’ve been hungry, I’m been pretty forgetful and have felt like a space-cadet, but there are deep detoxing things – from chemicals, foods and emotions – happening inside of my body and I thought I’d share the experience with you.

The first question might be why do an elimination diet and why such a strict one? The traditional idea behind an elimination diet is that you give your body a break from possible allergens and then you reintroduce them slowly, both to detox from harsh toxins in our environment and foods as well as a way to isolate what you might be allergic to, so you can know for sure if you have any food sensitivities.

For me though, I wanted to giving my body a rest from all the crap I was eating over the holidays and see if my body felt better. You see, although I am getting better all the time – healing from my Celiac Disease, recovering from a lifetime of ingesting food that was making me ill – my body over the holidays started to feel somewhat sickly again. The last month has been a constant flow of too much sugar, too many g-free grains, too much alcohol, too much everything. I’ve also been pushing my luck in the dairy department. Eating way too much cheese, which for me, more than about a bite or two is too much cheese these days.

All of these habits and foods have been making me feel bloated and cruddier again, just when I beginning to really feel better. My thought was, what if I gave my system a month free of foods that tap my digestive system and instead is filled with foods that heal? So this diet, where you begin introducing new foods in slowly, starting with really basic foods, appealed to me.



Before I go further, here’s an update on my health. So last week I had gained 4 lbs in the three weeks that I hadn’t posted a blog post. This week week is a different story, I’ve lost 8 lbs! HOLY CRAP! That’s a lot to lose in one week, but it’s because of the cleanse. We’ll see what happens once I’m off and eating more normally again.

So my new weight, drum roll please . . . I’m 198 lbs! My goal weight was 199. I’ve officially reached my goal and more. I’d love to celebrate with a toast, but I’m not consuming any booze at the moment, so I’ll toast with tea, but somebody drink a cocktail for me please!

I know I’m still losing weight even though I’ve reached my goal and I’m just going to roll with what my body is saying, but now I don’t think I want to have a goal to lose more weight, I think I just want to follow my body and do what feels right. I have a new found trust in really, deeply knowing myself, which you’ll read about below and I know that my body and mind will help me navigate this health path I’m on.



Now, back to my cleanse story, the first two days of the diet, during the green smoothie period, was pretty intense. I did eat a tiny bit of meat on both days because I was feeling very weak, but I stuck with organic chicken and lamb because they are lower potential allergens.

Day one of the diet, I was mostly OK. Hungry, yes, but mostly I felt fine. I made lacto-fermented vegetables and bone broth and acted like a card carrying member of Portlandiapickling things and living with food allergies. Please note: I made my bone broth in my crock pot and let it cook on low for 24 hours. The longer you cook it, the better it gets and I added salt to it too, to make it taste better.

Day two was another matter all together. On the second day I felt like I was starting to hit a euphoric period, but that period was fleeting and then I’d feel depleted and exhausted, sometimes moments later and then this cycle would repeat again. It was during this emotional roller coaster on day two that I had this really cool/weird experience.

Here’s what happened. I was laying in bed, feeling like hell. Feeling like my stomach was grinding with pain, even though I’d been drinking as much green smoothie and hot tea as I could and it wasn’t just my stomach, it was all over. My legs ached. My body felt weak and ravaged by the cleanse, but something entirely different was happening in my mind. It was as if I disconnected from my physical body. I could see myself outside of me and I could see my own human suffering, but I wasn’t in it. I was in another place, deep within my own spirit. The place I was in felt like my soul. I was a mind and a soul without a body for a moment and it made me feel so free!

As this was happening I felt a feeling of release happening within the core of my being. It was as if I was breaking free from something that had burdened me for my whole life. It was me, feeling the me, within me, in a real and powerful way and no amount of suffering could dampen or contain the bigger me that was coming out. I felt both powerful and weak in the moment, but it wasn’t confusing, it was just more of a a reminder of the pain and strength that exist in tandem within all of us human beings.

As I lay there thinking of this I also had feelings of sadness for this poor body, laying there suffering. The body I’ve judged harshly over the years for not meeting my expectations: like thinking I was too heavy or for being too curvy or whatever. A body that has been treated so badly- subjected to regular toxins, years of no exercise, and then extra judgement when the results were weight gain and lack of health.

In that moment I was reminded again, that I am not my body. My body is one part of me, but it is not me. There is a bigger me in me and it’s not in the physical realm. It also reaffirmed what I’ve been feeling recently- I need to take better care of this body. I need to give this body as much of a break as I can. This body is the vehicle that I travel through life in, but it isn’t me, it’s my car. I have to keep my vehicle in good working order. Then I came back into myself and could feel the pain in my body, but it stopped at my neck and my head was still in a good place. I felt both peace and pain simultaneously.

I had a good hard cry about the whole thing- about my own judgement, about my suffering body, about the frailty of  being a human, which is only matched by our strength.

After I had cried it all out of my system I realized I was STARVING and that I was trippin’ out (even if it was a good experience) and I’d better eat something pronto, so I did.

The cool thing is, my mind is even calmer now. I’m so freakin’ zen right now, I can hardly believe it. I know that any emotional state is temporary and that I have the potential, as we all do to feel the opposite at any moment, but let me just say, I’m feelin’ good and it keeps getting better!

2013 is the year that I officially started keeping my life-vehicle clean! Hooray!

How about you? Have you done a cleanse before? How did you feel during and afterward? Would you try a cleanse if you haven’t before? How’s the car that carries you through life? Is it in good running order? Could your body use a little detox from your food life? Just asking questions, no judgements from me. I know it can take a long to time to be ready to make changes to one’s diet even if it’s temporary. More next week. Until then, just keep hangin’ tough.




  1. Posted January 7, 2013 at 1:58 am | #

    I’ll be ready to celebrate the achievement of your fabulous goal after this week, whether we celebrate with minds in bodies or not. For now, congratulations!!! You are more radiant than ever, and look out world! There’s a new Jen in town.

    • Posted January 7, 2013 at 3:39 pm | #

      Thank you, Dedrick! Yes, let’s celebrate soon! xo

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