A Mind & Body Reboot: Juicing, Spinning & Sauna

On day 6 of the program (read my first two posts about it here and here) I started a 5-day juice cleanse. To those of you who haven’t done one, this will seem crazy (only juice for five days!), but it’s actually one of the best things I have done in a long time. The juices, made by Jill Pettijohn, are thicker than your average orange juice, contain way more nutrients and much less sugar.

Every day I had three green juices, two fruity ones and a nut milk before bed. Strangely, I was never hungry, save some light cravings when walking by restaurants, and overall felt very light. When I started eating food again, after five days, it did feel a bit strange to chew again. If you want to try this but don’t want to shell out the $200-300 they usually cost, you can also make your own, Google juice cleanse recipes and choose ones that look good to you, just stay with the three greens, two fruitier ones (referred to as lemonades, which is kind of confusing since they are nothing like the lemonades we are using to seeing at the stores), and one nutmilk (which can even be organic unsweetened almond milk from the store).

These were my last two juices in the five-day juice cleanse. All of them were very good and I did not feel especially hungry.

These were my last two juices in the five-day juice cleanse. All of them were very good and I did not feel especially hungry.

Last week, I told you about finally making peace with the Rebounder. Well, it seems I spoke to soon. I had light chest pains one time last week as I was working out on it, which seemed normal since there is a lot of bouncing going on. Next time I went to do my Rebound workout, however, the pain was piercing, and it stayed with me all day. Luckily, since I was in this program, Magen Banwart was able to refer me to some great people to talk to and the next day I got an appointment with a sports medicine doctor. I had to go x-rays and EKGs and all that stuff to rule out heart problems (which we sucessfully did), and it seems like I just had an inflammation in the muscle of my chest. Thankfully it was nothing worse, but it was scary since it was so close to the heart. I’m eating antibiotics and have to stay away from the Rebounder, running, and all other bouncy activities until the pain goes away completely. This is very annoying when I am on a program and want to do these things, but I decided to look at it for what it was — an opportunity to make friends with new forms of exercise.

Me, making friends with the spin bike. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

Me, making friends with the spin bike. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

Hello spinning. I have never really been a fan of this type of exercise, I’ve done it every now and then for variety but it never seemed to me that it was that effective since it essentially only works the lower part of your body. Right now, however, that was a great thing and I went to my first spinning class in a year or so. In our weekend workouts with Magen, she decided to do a lot of spinning for our cardio as well, and after three times on the bike it felt like something I would like to incorporate more into my regular exercise regimen, maybe one or two times a week. This past Sunday, I forgot to bring my shoes to class and even did a spin class with just four pairs of socks on! I had to sit down every now and then when we did stand-up sprints, but otherwise it worked out just fine. We also did some more core classes, something I definitely want to continue with after the program is done, and a yin yoga class, where instead of doing a flow you hold each pose for several minutes — a nice way to shake up sore muscles.

Group core class — a great way to tone your muscles. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

Group core class — a great way to tone your muscles. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

Another new friend of mine is the sauna. After our weekend group workouts, we always ended it with an hour in the sauna, sweating out toxins. I never used to like the sauna much, but if you bring a bottle of water (put electrolytes in it if you want) and a towel to wipe off sweat and exfoliate it is quite the pleasant thing to do. It is also a good place to just sit and talk. Doing this kind of thing with a group has been very helpful to me, just to know that there are thirteen others going through the same thing I am means a lot. And, you don’t want to feel like you’re letting anyone down by cheating!

Sweating it out in the sauna. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

Sweating it out in the sauna. Photo by Sara Beth Turner.

After the 5-day juice cleanse, it was back to the food program I told you about before. I also started making my own soups for dinner, Googling recipes for vegan soups that seemed easy to make and contained ingredients that I had at home and were not on my NO-list (see my first post). A red lentil, carrot and garlic soup and a frozen pea and mushroom soup were two of my favorites. Soups are one of those things that I like to make at home, because you can really control what goes in it — and it’s easy and quick. If you buy them from the store, read the labels carefully, many contain high amounts of sodium. Also, stay away from canned soups and foods (the industry is quietly working on a can liner that is BPA-free, but most if not all linings of cans currently contain BPA, a known toxin that can leach into foods).

The last week of this 21-day program, I have to travel for work, which will surely be a challenge. But I am determined to find ways to stay on the program without driving myself crazy. More about that next week.

Top photo by Sara Beth Turner.

About author
A designer by trade, Johanna has always had a passion for storytelling. Born and raised in Sweden, she's lived and worked in Miami, Brooklyn and, currently, Ojai, CA. She started Goodlifer in 2008 to offer a positive outlook for the future and share great stories, discoveries, thoughts, tips and reflections around her idea of the Good Life. Johanna loves kale, wishes she had a greener thumb, and thinks everything is just a tad bit better with champagne (or green juice).
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