Test Your Cleanse IQ!

Monday, June 13, 2011 | 0 comments »

By D. V. Donatelli

A week ago, I was walking past the Shakeology® fountain here at Beachbody® Headquarters, and I started thinking—after reading so many articles about the benefits of fasts and cleanses—that maybe I should give a cleanse a try. I just happened to be entering the recovery week of my second round of P90X®, and that was the clincher—I would skip a few days' workouts and do a cleanse instead. I would do something unthinkable in my family: not eat for a while. Yes, it would be tough, but I was determined to set upon the path to inner cleanliness. Below are some true/false statements about my experience.
  1. False: My hunger only got worse and worse throughout. I couldn't believe it, either, until I thought about it. While normally we associate hunger with crankiness and discomfort, I found that after approximately 36 hours, I had returned to a "normal" feeling in my stomach. No longer were virulent hunger pangs viciously flapping the sheets of my digestive system; instead, it was almost like a cranky child who slowly realized his tantrum wasn't going to work this time. And it makes sense: when we were cavepeople, we probably went very long stretches without eating, and our bodies needed to be able to enter a noncranky-yet-still-hungry mode. I was happy to find that, despite the trappings of modernity and the rampant fatness of my genetics, that mechanism still exists within me. I think my roommate, who had started to cartoonishly look like a box of pizza to me, was happy about it, too.
  2. False: Despite being hungry, my body felt fine the whole time. I could definitely tell that I was at a calorie deficit. It wasn't bad; it was just noticeable. For instance, my movements were slower and more (lazily) calculated. Additionally, sometimes when I would stand up from my desk, I would get a mild lightheadedness—a lightheadedness that was actually rather enjoyable. I have an alcohol allergy, so I haven't had a drink in years, and the lightheaded feeling kind of reminded me of being mildly tipsy, which was actually kind of fun until I started hitting on a coat rack.
  3. False: I didn't eat anything. In my 60 hours of cleansing, the only calories I put into my body came from Greenberry Shakeology, some strawberries, and two bananas. I also guzzled water like I was at the world's lamest frat party. Let me tell you, when you are at a caveperson-like calorie deficit, three strawberries blended with water, ice, and Greenberry Shakeology will send you to your knees, praising the name of chemistry or the Creator in appreciation of the sweet glories of merciful, transcendent satiety.
  4. True: I loved it and would do it again. Again, after the first 36 hours, I felt like I could continue with the cleanse indefinitely. After I ate and had my energy levels return to normal, I felt better than I've felt in years. And the benefits must be aesthetic, too, because just yesterday my coworker Jeff told me he overheard a female coworker tell her friend that she thought I was cute. Unfortunately, Jeff didn't get a chance to actually see who said it. So, basically, Jeff gave me a treasure map without an X on it. Oh well—to mix my metaphor, I'm just happy to be nominated.