First let me say that I am not one of the coaches. I was not given this program/product and I am receiving nothing from this review.  You, of course, are gonna get a bunch of info which I am happy to share with you.

I decided to do this program for a couple of reasons. One to lose weight…which you know (or are told) is secondary and the other was to completely clean up my eating.

Most people eat way worse than me. Now, I don’t say that to be mean or point fingers. Its not that kind of thing. A lot of people have lost 20lbs. in 21 days and frankly they have flushed a toxic filled diet right out to the trash. No more meat, bread, pizza, fast food, chips, dairy etc.

They encourage changing over to organic products so that your are taking in less toxins for this cleanse. I already ate organic 98% of the time. They start by weaning you off of animal product in the first week, I’m already a vegetarian. I do on occasion enjoy yogurt and I like eggs a lot, cheese here and there and damn, do I love me some ice cream. My biggest challenge of cleaning up my diet was eliminating sugar and bread carbs. The other thing that made this menu easier for me is that I was already familiar with all of the foods. I knew where to get Tempeh and what it was, quinoa, millet, seaweed, Braggs etc. I already had alot of the items in my house. I just used them differently. This did seem to be a challenge for some of the participants.

So  it kinda goes like this… A bunch of supplements to assist with the cleanse, your metabolism, gut bacteria, digestion and reducing inflammation. There is a little schedule guide that tells you when to take what and how long before you eat a meal. You are supposed to drink darn close to a gallon of distilled water per day. * I think the best I did was about 80 ozs a day which is up from my normal 24ish. I will admit that plain distilled water with the mineralize wasn’t working with me. I had to add a few drops of organic liquid stevia and lemon to be able to tolerate it at all. Fresh lemon taste much better than bottled -by the way. There is a rockin recipe book that goes with your menu plan and I WILL be using a bunch of the recipes in the future. Super Yum! Like I said before it slowly weans you off of foods like meat and bread and then into grains and then none to the point that in the last week you are eating a vegan diet. Now I know that this may or may not work for some people. They have support pages set up per phase on FaceBook so that you can ask questions and get/give support to others going through the same phase as you. There are Beachbody people that answer your questions on FB if you can’t find it on the website or book. And frankly they are pretty quick at replying. There is a substitution list if you are missing an ingredient. In the book there is also a “menu in a crunch” that helps you with easier meals if you are on the run.

The biggest complaints at first were people who had headaches from caffeine withdrawal. Knowing I was starting the program and that they highly recommend no over the counter meds be used, like my dear friend Motrin, I switched to decaf coffee. I did this 4 days prior to my start. That way when a headache set in my friend Mo was there to help me and I wasn’t messing up my progress. I would highly suggest that to anyone who plans on doing this program and has caffeine in their current diet.

The second complaint was the alkalize/power greens. I loved that little salad in a cup.You add the packet to 3-4oz of distilled water. But on week 2 there is the detox packet that people loved and I was not a fan of AT ALL. There is a combo of herbs or something that just tasted off to me. I couldnt quite wrap my head around it and while they suggest 8-12ozs of water to take it I have to admit it took me more like 13 or 14ozs. The upside of it, besides the reason for it, is that I was taking in 39+ ozs of water just taking the detox.

People complained about being hungry or not having enough food. You are actually allowed a snack each day. I had two snacks in week one and then never had another. I was full after each meal without any trouble.

There is the option to use Shakeology (vegan chocolate or strawberry) as a breakfast sub or a snack. I used one of each flavor for breakfast on two different days. Chocolate with frozen strawberries and distilled mineralized water tasted way better to me than the strawberry flavor. 

The cool thing about this program is all of the fresh food and yummy recipes. And it can be said that the prep, cooking and clean up can be just as uncool. You just don’t realize how much it takes to make a good meal. And clearly by the way people eat these days you know that it’s easier to make something less nutritious than to actually take the time and make a “good for you” meal. The first week or so I spent so so so much time in the kitchen. The prep, cutting, planning, cooking felt like I was there for a million years. Then after you have this tasty wonderful meal and you’re happy and full and then you turn around to see a giant mountain of pots and pans. I just kept thinking of it as burning calories. I really really needed to think of it as something positive.

I was faced with a very large life challenge in week 2 (read *high stress* thinking of drinking and smoking and cursing and crying) I don’t smoke at all and drink on rare occasion. Ice cream would have been helpful but I couldn’t find it on any of my daily menus!! I did “break” and have a tablespoon of almond butter. I couldn’t think of anything else that I would really enjoy and it was allowed in week one. I didn’t think it would screw me up that bad and it served well as a little emotional food relief.

My other challenge was, just after that stress settled a little, I pulled my back out. It definitely felt like a “FML” moment. So my activity level was shot. I couldn’t even walk on the track. This bummed me out more than anything because I was truly hoping to lose at least 10-12lbs on this program. I did take 1 single 200mg Motrin on my worst day of pain.

I found it strange that I always felt so full between the food and water (and maybe supplements) that I had no cravings. There was always a touch of sweetness in a recipe at just the right moment to make it feel ok without sugar. I didn’t seem to care as my husband and kids had dessert after dinner, often.  It seemed like a long road in front of me when I started the 21 days but I kept a count down calendar to see progress. It actually passed by pretty quickly. I only weighed myself 3 times. They say you should only weigh yourself at day one and at day 21. If you really want to check do it after each phase but not everyday. You will make yourself crazy AND this program is really about the cleanse not weight loss.

In the end I lost 8 pounds. I did not measure inches like a lot of people do but my clothes are fitting better and I can see some changes here and there.

I was told that if you ate pretty clean before the program that your weight loss would be lower. So I wasn’t too surprised. I think if I could have kept up my activity level up and not pulled my back out that I would have lost a couple more pounds for sure.

Now for phase out. Or phase in. I’m not sure what its called but they say you are now to do the whole diet in reverse to slowly reintroduce the foods you phased out – grains, nuts, yogurt, meat for the carnivores…lol   According to the literature your body will be more sensitive to foods and stimulants like caffeine so you should take it slow to see if you have any adverse reactions. Not a bad idea. I also read that a lot of people had better weight loss success on the reverse now that their body is running cleaner. It’s worth a try.

That’s pretty much it.

Over all I like this program a ton. For me I have found a new love for my veggies since being introduced to a bunch of new and exciting recipes. You can get bored with the same ole, same ole. After visiting the doc for my bad back he agreed I could really do without wheat in my diet, I kinda already knew that. So I am going to try to continue without it. I have a feeling my morning coffee will be back just not sure when.

*Keep a look out for another related post with pictures of some of the recipes I made.