Last week, the Monday after I moved to San Diego, Sean & I started the week off by doing the Suja Fresh Start Juice Cleanse. We had been eating a lot of unhealthy foods on the weekends and while we were eating well during the week, it was adding up and making us, well me especially feel not so great.
As the saying goes, you can’t outrun a bad diet – lol. I don’t think I had a horrible diet but just a combination of a lot of travel, eating out and too many desserts were taking their toll.
So we decided on a Juice Cleanse to start us off. We picked the Suja Cleanse after a lot of research and looking at various cleanse, pretty much because it was the most inexpensive. Juice cleanses are expensive and we don’t have a juicer or the time and patience to do it ourselves.
Suja is made here in San Diego, so even though it is a national brand, it is still a local business and they sell the 3 day cleanses at Whole Foods (at a discounted price from their online store). The Whole Foods prices was $129.95 + tax and the Suja online store price was $162 + $36 shipping.
1) Breakfast – Glow (Apple, Celery, Cucumber, Kale, Collard Greens, Peppermint & Spearmint Tea & Spinach)
2) Mid-Morning – Fuel (Carrot, Orange, Apple, Pineapple, Lemon & Turmeric)
3) Lunch – Purify (Carrot, Apple, Celery, Cucumber, Beet & Lemon)
4) Mid-Afternoon – Fiji (Apple, Celery, Cucumber, Kale, Collard Greens, Lemon, Ginger & Spinach)
5) Dinner – Green Supreme (Apple, Kale & Lemon)
6) Dessert – Vanilla Cloud (Almond Milk, Honey, Coconut, Cinnamon, Vanilla & Nutmeg)
They recommend starting the day out with a cup of hot lemon water so I did that all three days, mostly because I like to have something hot to drink in the morning.
Here is my recount of how it went & Sean’s will follow. We wanted to give you both a male & female perspective on how this went.
Day 1: Mon, Mar 23
Started the day with a cup of hot lemon water around 7:15a
Juice 1: Glow around 8:00a
I have a weird taste in my mouth, not sure if that’s from the juice or from having been sick. I’m not really feeling very energetic – more sleepy.
Juice 2: Fuel around 10:15a
Tasted better than I was expecting since I’m not a huge fan of carrot juice
It’s been 2.25 hrs – I’ve really been fighting off the whole blood sugar dropping issue – trying to drink more water but it’s not really helping the hunger issue
Juice 3: Purify 12:50p
I don’t really like beets but it’s not too bad taste wise. I’m just so hungry…
Hum… It’s been about 45 minutes….since I finished this bottle. My ears are feeling hot and I’m definitely sleepy.
So bad but I took a little nap on my lunch break.
Juice 4: Fiji 3:15p feeling really sick – Sean and I are talking about eating real food to get us thru, we are so hungry.
Juice 5: Green Supreme – 6:15-30p – this one made me feel kinda sick – it tasted fine but I think my sugar was so low it was like a shock to the system.
Sean got home around 7ish and we went for a short 2 mile run. My legs felt so sluggish and by the end of the run, I was exhausted. This juice has a bit more calories, 220 vs the others that were under 200 for the bottle.
Juice 6: Vanilla Cloud – tasty and somewhat filling. It says to drink 3 hours prior to bed for proper digestion but I was so exhausted, I think I fell asleep about 20 minutes after I finished mine. I slept relatively well and didn’t feel hungry so that’s good.
Day 2: Tue, Mar 24
Started the day with 2 cups of hot lemon water
Juice 1: Glow around 8:30a I took about 45 minutes to drink it. I’m feeling a lot better today, so far anyways. I’m not feeling like my sugar is dropping every 5 seconds.
More hot lemon water – just because I like it 🙂
Juice 2: Fuel around 10:45a
It’s noon and I’m feeling like I have a lot more energy than yesterday
I still want food but it’s not quite as bad.
Juice 3: Purify 1:20p
I’m hungry and my stomach feels like it’s going to start growling. I still have more energy than yesterday but I really want to eat something more substantial.
It’s 3pm and I’m getting a little tired, I feel like I should have a snack
I ended up eating a ½ of a small sweet potato around 3:45p. I’m not sure if it really did anything for me.
Juice 4: Fiji 4:15p I wasn’t super hungry so I guess that the sweet potato helped a little but I needed to get the juice in so I could have something before Sean & I go for our run this evening. There isn’t a lot of time left to drink the last 2 before I go to bed.
Juice 5: Green Supreme around 7:30p I drank this after my run with Sean and then about 30 minutes later I drank Juice 6 Vanilla Cloud and promptly fell asleep lol.
Day 3: Wed, Mar 25
Started the day with some more Hot Lemon Water – I like having something hot to drink in the morning and since we didn’t have any green tea at the time.
Juice 1: Glow 7:30a. It’s almost 9a and I’ve got a headache, I’m feeling lightheaded and a little hot & cold (fluish)
I’ll be honest, after this I got distracted with work and stopped writing my experience. I drank a lot more green tea and all my juices. Around mid-day, I did eat a half of an avocado and I drank my last green drink on the way to my softball game. Sean & I drank our Vanilla Cloud after our run about 8/8:30pm. I felt a lot like day 1 on day 3 – weak and run-down.
They recommend starting back on real food slowly so I started Thursday with an energy bowl from Jamba Juice, then a half an avocado & baked egg, a bowl of cereal and then for dinner, we had avocado salads, miso soup & a California crunch roll from the local sushi place.
I exercised every day while on the cleanse, I ended up losing 8 pounds, I’ve since gained back a lot of it, but I was super weak while exercising. Running 2 miles seriously felt like 15 and I had to force myself to run every step. Even after starting to eat real food again, I’m still dealing with the calorie deficit to a degree. I am extremely lucky to have a fast metabolism and I eat small meals all day long so this was a huge shock to my system, especially after having been sick the week before.
I had always wanted to do a juice cleanse and I am really glad I did it so I could experience what it was like. Would I do it again? Maybe for a day. But I don’t think that it would be good for me and my body to do this on a regular basis. Not only do I need more calories, I love food. Drinking juice here and there is fine, but it’s so not the same.
Sean’s take 🙂
In preparation for our Suja 3-day Fresh Start juice cleanse, I decided to buy the Suja 3-day Essentials Fresh Start cleanse available exclusively at Costco the week prior. The Costco version consists of 3 organic juices (a spicy cayenne lemonade, a mega-green juice, and an almond-banana milk) per day and a recommended mini meal plan to compliment or supplement the juices. The beauty of the Costco option is that it’s extremely reasonable to tryout at $30 for 9 juices, a $10 investment per day.
I successfully ramped up with the Costco Essentials plan, and each day I supplemented the 3 juices with a big healthy salad from Green Spot Salad Company which I ate for a late lunch. After my ramp up period, I flew out to Phoenix for the big move. Jenny and I enjoyed some solid meals over the weekend before starting the full cleanse, and we picked up our 18-juice kits from Whole Foods on Sunday. I should note that for folks living in San Diego, the Hillcrest Whole Foods has a ton of the Suja kits in stock, even though it was clear that a lot of kits had recently sold.
So, I’ll skip over all the amazing details Jenny has already covered about the juices and their contents. I did take some photos of each day as I went, so I’ll let those to the talking. In general, I really enjoyed the cleanse. I definitely did feel like the first day was the toughest as I’d skipped coffee and had what I can only assume was a bit of a caffeine deprevation headache. On the second and third days, I wanted to make sure my calorie intake was slightly higher as I had additional activities planned in addition to daily runs with a boot camp on Tuesday and a softball game on Wednedsay, so I supplemented on those days with one small salad consisting of organic mixed greens, spinach, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, corn, red peppers, sprouts, jicama, avocado, and apple. I did not add dressing or egg or bacon or any other protein that I might have normally. We were allowed to eat raw veggies as part of the rules of the plan so I definitely took advantage of it.
The juices were all very tasty. I love green juices and the overall variety of the 6 different juices. My favorite was probably the 2nd juice each day which had a carrot and pineapple base. My least favorite was the 3rd juice of the day due to the beet, although I will admit that it was relatively subtle and still very drinkable even if you are not a fan of dirt flavor, err, I mean beet flavor… haha.
Although I did feel the calorie deficit each day (enough to cut roughly 5-6 lbs), I really did feel energized and in a healthier state with each day of the cleanse. My goal was to really bring some focus to my eating and fueling strategies, and I could definitely see myself doing this plan monthly or even trying out a longer juice plan in future. I love chewing my food, too, so having the raw veggie salad was a saving grace. For a bit of back story, I’ve been eating large salads daily since 2013 and am a huge salad person. I will also comment that doing this cleanse really does make “real” food taste amazing once you add that back in, so if you’re bored with the tastes in your current diet, this could really reset your taste buds.
I admit that I did miss my normal caffeine infusion in my diet, so I supplemented with some black tea and that was actually quite nice. Tea was technically also allowed as part of the plan as were the raw veggies, avocado, sweet potato, and broth. I do have a small vanilla creamer addiction which I normally add into my coffee. It’s a habit I’m trying to cut back on as I know the partially-hydrogenated oil in there is not ideal. I did end up using one teaspoon of creamer in my tea on days two and three. I did manage to refrain from eating any desserts that were brought into our office on the first day… apple pies and home-made stuffed cupcakes… OMG that was tough. I, did, however, manage to wrap up a cupcake and save it for Thursday after the cleanse was done.
Ok, that’s it. I’m starting to write a book here. I would like to thank Jenny for sparking the idea for us to try this cleanse out together. I’m so happy that we did. 🙂