The Juice Cleanse

Have you ever done something that is so sickeningly stereotypical of your hometown? Something that makes you sigh in frustration knowing that you are so conspicuously French or Icelandic or Floridian. Like if a Texan said, “Yee Haw!” or an English girl invited you over for tea and crumpets, or an Australian man was attractive. It’s all so predictable.

I often try not to be predictable, but I often fail. I’m from Southern California and I don’t hide it well. I say “dude”, “oh my gosh”, “totally”, and “like,” way too much, I talk about freeways and traffic on a daily basis, I do yoga, and I put on a jacket when it is less than 70° outside. If that wasn’t enough to give it away however, maybe this next thing would be.

A few months back I decided to do a juice cleanse. My sister had been interested in trying one for quite some time and had finally come across one that fit her well.  So, at her request for solidarity, my mom and I decided to do it with her.

The first step was to go shopping.

Here was our list:

Green vegetables, all of them that have ever existed.

Some apples and lemons to make it seem casual

The one vegetable I prayed we wouldn’t have to get

A vegetable I had never heard of

A vegetable that made my colon audibly whimper

Vegetables that I was 99.9% sure did not contain any juice

A few vegetables that I had heard of but never wanted to drink

A candy bar to rub against my face when I was regretting this decision (which they didn’t let me get)

Six Nalgene bottles (in the color of our choice!!!)

When we unloaded our groceries at home, our refrigerator looked like the doorway to vegan Narnia.

The cleanse would last 3 days.

We were starting on a Thursday morning. Our thought process was that Thursday and Friday are generally the easiest days of the work week because of the impending weekend, thus the promise of Saturday would distract us from unending hunger. So late Wednesday night, we juiced.

I had juiced before.  I had let my sister make me juice before, so I knew the general principle of it. You clean the fruits and vegetables, you cut the fruits and vegetables and you stick them in the white tube of death where all solids go to die. You then watch as the mouth of the juicer vomits fruit and vegetable guts into your cup, you stir it up, and you drink it. YAY HEALTH.

For this 3 day cleanse, the 3 of us would have to drink 64 ounces of the juice each day. 8 ounces every hour starting at 8 a.m. As you can imagine, juicing the 192 ounces needed for the 3 of us took quite a bit of time. By the end of Wednesday night I thought I’d never stop smelling celery. I just assumed that from that night on, every smell I would ever smell, would be a slight shade of celery. Luckily, this passed by the next morning.

That Thursday morning I awoke like I do every morning, overwhelmingly hungry and excited for my bowl of cereal. When I walked into the kitchen however, the lingering smell of liquefied celery torsos reminded me of the handcuffs on my daily diet. I touched the cereal cabinet, trying to absorb the processed sugar, and then opened the refrigerator door. There they were. 6 Nalgene bottles of green…stuff dying to be consumed at 8 ounce increments. After some internal groaning I grabbed the 2 blue ones and headed out the door to work.

Accessorized with 64 ounces of slime, I clocked in at 8 a.m., stuck the bottles in the mini fridge, and took a seat at my desk. After powering up my computer I came to the unfortunate realization that bringing the bottles to work was only half of the task at hand. Apparently being in close proximity to the juice wasn’t the same as drinking it. So, I reopened the door, gulped down 8 ounces, slammed the door shut and whispered “chocolate” under my breath.

I’m going to be completely honest with you, the juice wasn’t actually that bad. Unlike my original expectations, the juice did not taste like garden farts. It was definitely juice-ish. It tasted healthy and earthy, but without the underlying hints of dirt one would expect.

Thursday went relatively smoothly. The specific cleanse we were on allowed us to have lean protein for dinner, so after the 8 hours of sipping fruit and vegetable blood we were rewarded with some chicken and WHAT? more vegetables. Woop.

Friday was not a good day. Although I spent most of the day feeling like a chunk of cilantro was slowly choking me to death, the 8 hour juice cruise to start my day went swimmingly.  The trouble came that night.

Quick tip to anyone considering trying a juice cleanse at any point in their life: Double check your schedule before starting. Do not, I repeat do NOT decide to start a juice cleanse when you have Friday night Dodger tickets. You will spend the entire game watching people eat hot dogs and churros and pizza and malts and nachos and everything else that you could ever imagine outside the world of lean protein. You will hate yourself for choosing such an agonizing path and you will spend most of the game visualizing what it would be like to juice live humans.

Saturday was the last day. We had been weakened by the Dodger game and wanted to call it quits that morning, but with a fridge full of slime filled Nalgene bottles, we knew that we had to finish what we started. Not long after our first juice gulp, my Grandpa called and invited my dad, sister and I over to watch the Dodger game that night. After we agreed, my sister and I decided that we would finish our allotted juice for the day and then eat whatever Grandpa wanted for dinner. Grandpa would set us free.

I had woke up feeling really good that morning. I don’t know how, but the juice had managed to keep me both satiated and energized while simultaneously making me feel lighter, cleaner even. To put it simply, my body felt totally and completely refreshed. A.k.a the slime worked.

When it came down to it and I had my chicken burrito for dinner, I decided that I would recommend the juice cleanse to anyone who asked about it. When you put your head down and do it, it’s not as bad as you make it out to be.

Here are some tips:

  • Don’t be alarmed by how much you pee. It will be a lot.
  • Don’t let your dad convince you to go hiking before you visit your Grandpa. Not only will your body be fatigued, reminding you with each step that you have in fact only consumed slime, but you will also, as mentioned in tip 1, have to pee most of the time.
  • Don’t forget to check your schedule before starting.
  • Don’t put yourself in situations that make you want to murder people at the hands of hunger.
  • Don’t quit before it’s over. The end result is worth the struggle.

If you’re interested in trying the cleanse I did, you can find it here.

Good luck and happy vegetable murdering!

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