I want to preface this by saying that there are soooo many options to lose weight and they all work differently for every body; the uniqueness found in our genes is what makes each of us so beautiful.
I debated with myself for awhile about whether I should write this post purely because it is such a personal topic and I wasn’t sure I wanted this blog to be quite so soul-bearing. First off I’d like to say, I am very confident in my own skin, however, I constantly am striving to look and feel my best. This often means that I wish I could lose a few pounds here and there. I think some people can relate, or maybe even feel the opposite and wish they could gain a few pounds here and there. That’s ok too. A big part of looking and feeling our best is dependent on what we put into our bodies. You eat junk, you feel like junk. And ughhh, hello holidays – thanks to all the snacking on meats and cheeses and cookies and crackers and endless supplies of chocolate – I definitely ate a lot of junk.
I have limited knowledge of nutrition – I have taken one university level nutrition course and absolutely loved it – however, I am by no means an expert. I sometimes feel we have too many people claiming to be nutrition experts on line after they’ve read a few studies on the subject. The truth is, Nutrition is a complex and extremely interesting topic and I whole heartedly promote those to educate themselves on it.
I have spent three months completely sugar free and absolutely loved it! I would definitely recommend this strategy to any one very determined to feeling their best. After about a month I didn’t even desire any sugary-sweets anymore! I’ve tried to go off of it again but now that I’m living with my boyfriend and something we love to do together is try new types of food; I’ve found this type of diet is just not practical for our lifestyle. Even though we are not entirely sugar free, we still try our best to limit the amount of sugar we put into our bodies. Sugar really is such an awful culprit when it comes to disease! This blog post (the author just happens to be my amazing doctor sister!) is a great read on eliminating sugar.
I’m almost embarrassed to say this, but I’ve even tried one of those tea-toxes (detox tea). The one I tried was by Your Tea and was called the Tiny Tea Teatox. The idea is that the ingredients in the tea will nourish your digestive organs so they are working optimally. I can totally get behind this, and I think detoxing is great for your organs but this product just didn’t work for me. I did lose weight while doing this but that was only because the tea made me so nauseous that I couldn’t eat anything. However, this was my experience and like I said before these products may work totally different for your body!
Now onto my current venture: Isagenix. Isagenix is a whole nutritional system. The daily plan for most days is to replace two of your meals with their protein shakes, and your third meal is an approximately 400 calorie meal. A small snack such as almonds, a hard boiled egg, or the provided snack wafers are encouraged between meals. A few days of the month are ‘cleanse days’ as well. I won’t explain these in depth here, but if you want more information on them just let me know!
I was extremely tentative to try this product as I have always believed that whole foods are the best way to go. And I still do. However, being a full time student I am constantly on the go and if I didn’t meal plan at the beginning of the week I was often too busy (ok more likely lazy…) to make a lunch for the next day. This would result in me eating a lot of awful burritos or pizza that are offered on campus. This resulted in a gain of weight and very few whole foods actually being consumed for breakfast and lunch. I saw a few friends posting about their amazing results on this nutritional system and decided to inquire about it. I found that the ingredients in the shakes were all ingredients that I could actually understand and they included enzymes that help your body break down fat. As a biology student, I found the science behind this pretty fascinating. This, and the idea I could just mix the powder with water in my shaker cup when I was on the go really tempted me to try this product. So although they do not exactly fit into my Whole Foods mantra, they do offer a very nutritious, easy-to-grab option during our busy lifestyles these days.
I realized pretty quickly that all you could find were positive reviews about the product, and that they may be somewhat biased. When you sign up for Isagenix you sign up as an associate. The more people you convince to join your team, the more money you are going to make. So to lay the cards on the table, if you are reading this and are interested in the products I can send you any information you desire and if in the end you do decide to pursue this system, I can sign you up and I will make a commission. Although I like the idea of making money (let’s get real, who doesn’t??), I would never want to promote a product that I didn’t believe in. Lol clearly I’m not the greatest when it comes to sales. But I never started Isagenix for the business, I started because I saw first-hand how friends’ bodies were changing on this system and I thought I would give it a go. So I am going to use this platform to give as honest a review of the products as I can.
Isagenix is meant to be a lifestyle change and not just a quick way to lose some weight. Like any weight loss system if you use them for a period, see the results you want, then stop and return to your old habits, you will gain the weight back. This is sort of what happened to me.
I started Isagenix in September 2014, the weight started to come off but very very slowly initially as my body adjusted. I saw some testimonials and some people lost 15+ pounds in their first 30 days! I wanted this to be the case for me! I lost approximately 5 pounds my first month, which don’t get me wrong is great and I was happy with, but I went in hoping for more based on the other testimonials. But like I said before – every body reacts differently. This really is such an important point to remember when you are trying to lose weight, it’s so easy to compare yourselves to others and get discouraged. For both October and November I continued to lose approximately 5 pounds each month.
I found this to be pretty good, since I was definitely not the poster child for this system. As I thought about it as a lifestyle change and not just a temporary diet, I decided to make it work for me. So once in awhile I did consume the non-recommended alcohol but I didn’t regret it because I was enjoying myself while also losing weight and feeling happy. This system really can be a lifestyle thing because once you reach your goal weight you can switch to their maintenance system, this means you’ll go down to just one shake a day. This just keeps you somewhat accountable and less likely to gain the weight back.
Overall, I lost 16.8 pounds from the beginning of September until the end of November. But then exams began, and quick sugary snacks were chosen over the healthier options, which eventually was followed by luxurious holiday feasts and sluggish movement. I rarely consumed a shake while we were at home, there was just too much other indulgent food people were preparing for us at all time! My mother in law (she really is the sweetest) gets so excited when her son comes home, she is just constantly cooking up all of his favourites (yeap you name it – waffles and whip cream; bacon and egg sandwiches; apple pies; ribs; gingersnaps. That’s a weird order, I know). I’ve had almost a month of holidays, and although I’ve enjoyed them, I cannot wait to get back into a healthier lifestyle.
That’s why I want you guys to follow me as I get back on this journey. Of the 16.8 pounds I lost, I have gained back 9 pounds (yikes, it really was a very decadent holiday). I’m hoping that by that sharing this with you I’ll be more likely to stick with it. I have this pride thing, where if I announce something publicly then I’m more likely to keep it going. But also to inspire even just one person! Hopefully…
Here are those personal and scary to show “Before” photos as I start my journey today:
*I actually was on my way to the gym so I apologize for my disheveled look… Also, Shawn told me half way through that I wasn’t supposed to smile in my before photos, so sorry for the awkward faces!
Ok, that was a very wordy post! But please let me know if you have any questions regarding Isagenix, going sugar free, or even more information on the tea-tox. You can post in the comments or email me directly if you feel more comfortable, firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember there are lots of different weight loss systems so if you are interested, do your research and decide what works best for your lifestyle! Let me know in the comments what things work and don’t work for you guys too!