Losing 20 Pounds in 30 Days: Part 1 — The Preview of my Detox Diet

What a difference a month can make!  And what a difference years did not make.  I lost 20 pounds in 30 days, kept it spiritual, kept it positive.

The first picture you see here was taken at Thanksgiving 2010.  I was working out 6 days a week–hard–and had been for 5 months with good results but no significant loss of weight or inches. 

The second picture was taken  in January 2011, just 6 weeks after I started a detox diet and had lost 20 pounds.  Easiest, fastest weight loss of my life.

Okay, technically, I lost 20.6 pounds in 29 days on a detox diet I’d considered trying for years.  My weight has fluctuated a little in the past 3 weeks since I started adding foods back in to see what I’m allergic or sensitive to (lots of surprises!), but I’ve kept about 19 pounds off and have begun adding back exercise.  The best part is that I lost 6.5 inches off my waistline and 5.5 off my hips.  The biggest indicator that I was sensitive to something in my diet was a drastic 4-inch drop in my waist in the first week of eliminating specific foods.  I’m still not sure what it was but I do have my suspicions, as I’ll discuss in this blog.

In this series of articles, I’ll cover what got me started on this adventure, how I turned myself into a human guinea pig (a la Tim Ferriss of Four-Hour Body fame, though I didn’t follow his regimen…just his self-experimentation mindset), food sensitivites and how they affected my waist and weight, good friends with really horrible advice, the demons in my pantry–and in the grocery store and restaurant, why I wasn’t eating as cleanly as I thought, why I had to double my caloric intake to lose weight, and how I’m meshing exercise with this regimen.  And more, too, as other things become important to analyze.

Let me say that this attempt at getting as healthy as possible (with the wonderful by-product of dropping 2 dress sizes almost overnight…or so it seemed) is not anything new.  In fact, I’m a little perturbed at people who say silly things to me like, “Oh, that’s wonderful that you’ve decided to focus on your health.”  No, I didn’t just decide this now.  I’ve been working toward this for 3 years, 1 month…and a number of times before when I’ve given up.  Most people don’t know that I did my first round of P90X last summer or that I was doing P90X doubles in the autumn.  To get to where I wanted to be–and to where I’m going–it took more than even P90X doubles (about 15 hours a week of strenuous exercise), clean eating, calorie restriction (bad, bad, bad), and portion control.  It took turning my eating patterns into a scientific experiment and figuring out exactly how I reacted to everything I consumed. 

I have learned that I usually have a choice–do I want to eat this 2 ounces of cheese badly enough that it’ll be worth the horrendous 24-hour headache that awaits me?  It’s an on-going experiment, and one of the things I set my intentions for at my 2010 Winter Solstice ritual.  If the body really is a temple, it helps to know what you’re painting the walls with and whether it makes the temple stronger or tears it down.