Day 1 of 22-Minute Hard Corps

In case you’ve been wondering, yes, I’m still here.  I lost 10 pounds on a second round of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset in February-March 2016!  I’ve been plugging along, doing my at-home fitness workouts everyday, drinking my Shakeology, and serving others as a coach.  I’ve lost 60 pounds since I started my journey with Beachbody after graduating from law school in 2010.  I even wore a bikini for the first time in my life last month!  I never had the confidence to do that before, and it’s all thanks to these programs and products.

Wearing a bikini for the first time!

What’s next?  Today, I started Tony Horton’s new program called 22-Minute Hard Corps.  It’s an eight-week bootcamp/military-style workout program that’s super short!  Only 22 minutes a day!  I’ve actually been lucky to do 22-Minute Hard Corps LIVE with Tony 3 times in the past month.  We worked out together on a cruise that I went on through Beachbody (the one where I wore that bikini for the first time!) and when he came to DC earlier this month.

Hanging out with Tony Horton in DC earlier this month!

Today, I pushed play on Cardio 1 and Core 1.  I’ve done Cardio 1 a couple of times now.  It was the sneak peek of the workout available on Beachbody On Demand.  I love the simplicity of the moves.  The format for Cardio 1 is three rounds of seven moves (T- Jacks, Bear Crawls, Lateral Shuffle, Forward Lunge Twist, Basic Burpee, A-Skips, and Run Lunge Squats) with 22-second breaks in between each round, and a Bonus Round of 22 Bear Crawls and 22 Burpees.  No equipment needed for Cardio 1.  Day 1 also involves an optional Core 1 workout, which was a lot of fun!  (Yes, I’m crazy and find some workouts FUN.)  And it’s seriously SHORT.  Like, 9 minutes short!  For Core 1, Tony has you rolling around on the floor for a couple of moves, which makes you feel a little silly and smile, which helps push the workout along.  There were some new abs/core moves introduced that I had never done before, even after having completed most Beachbody programs.

The verdict?  I definitely got sweaty and fatigued during the 22 minutes!  See:

Sweaty selfie from 22-Minute Hard Corps!

Nutrition-wise, I probably won’t be following the 22-Minute Hard Corps nutrition plan precisely.  I’ve really gotten into a groove with my nutrition and know what works for my body at this point.  I’m a weekday vegan, and give myself some latitude over the weekend to enjoy some top-notch treat (or cheat) meals.  it works for me.  My meals today included Vegan Chocolate Shakeology for breakfast, a spinach salad for lunch (with quinoa, beans, sunflower seeds, tofu, peppers, carrots, and a little olive oil and vinegar).  I had an apple as a mid-afternoon snack (I eat an apple a day like a big DORK).  Dinner is TBD!

Day 1 of 22-Minute Hard Corps is history!

PS – Over the past year, I’ve converted this from a blog to more of a website.  However, I’d like to keep content in the blog fresh and regular, so I’m going to try to post regularly.

PPS – Need some coaching? Motivation to start or continue your health, fitness, or wellness journey?  Send me at email at distilledjill@gmail or find me on Facebook!  My services are FREE when you buy Shakeology, a workout program, or BOTH through me.

Day 1 of 3-Day Refresh

I’m no stranger to cleanses.  Four months ago, I completed the Beachbody Ultimate Reset, which is a 21-day total body tune-up.  It rocked my world, changed my outlook on what I put in my body, and now I’ve come to conquer the newest cleanse that Beachbody has to offer – the 3-Day Refresh (3DR).

Some Background

Beachbody was inspired to do a 3-Day Refresh when they saw a coach had essentially made their own 3-day Shakeology cleanse.  It consisted of 3 days of Shakeology for breakfast and lunch, a dinner salad with a lean protein (like chicken, fish, or tofu), and green tea.  Well, Beachbody got word of this cleanse, saw that there was a market for a 3-day quick fix (rather than the pretty intense Ultimate Reset), but saw that they could improve upon the Shakeology cleanse.  How?  By adding more protein and fiber to keep you feeling full (I remember getting a little exhausted and irritable on the Shakeology cleanse) and giving you better food options to provide you with a more complete vision of nutrition.  Beachbody wanted to make a fast, clean, and healthy way to drop a few pounds quickly, break free of bad habits, jump start a new clean-eating diet or fitness regimen.  In walked the 3-Day Refresh.

3-Day Refresh Kit

3DR Kit

The 3-Day Refresh kit includes a program guide with recipes, lists of acceptable food options, and 3 days worth of the Vanilla Fresh shake (high-protein, hunger-satisfying shake), Fiber Sweep (digestive health drink), and Shakeology (daily dose of dense nutrition shake).

Having completed the Ultimate Reset not too long ago and acing it with flying colors, I thought how hard could the 3-Day Refresh really be?  This is my story.

Day 1 – Morning

The format for the 3 days is essentially the same.  First thing that you do upon waking is drink 8-10 ounces of filtered water to help get your system going.  For folks familiar with the Ultimate Reset, I’d like to point out a difference here.  Unlike the Ultimate Reset, where you are only permitted to drink distilled water, during the 3DR you can have filtered.  So, if you have a Brita, for example, you’re good.

Then I worked out.  I probably worked out more than I should have.  The program guide for the 3DR says that you should only engage in “mild to moderate exercise” so that your body can use your energy more effectively to help clean up your system without needing to repair muscle.  Well, so what if I consider Core Cardio and Balance from Insanity “moderate” exercise? To each their own, right?

For breakfast, I had Chocolate Vegan Shakeology like I do every morning.  But instead of blending it with almond milk, a banana, and peanut butter, I had to just stick with 1/2 banana and 1 1/4 cups of water.

Then it felt like a long morning.  Drinking tea is optional during the 3DR, and I decided to have a cup, which you can have at least 1 hour after breakfast.  You’re not supposed to have caffeine, but green tea is permitted if necessary.  I had some decaf herbal detox lemongrass tea.

An hour after the mid-morning tea, you can have the Fiber Sweep.  Fiber Sweep contains soluble and insoluble fibers from whole-ground flax, chia, and psyllium seed husks to naturally and gently eliminate waste from the digestive system while supporting healthy intestinal flora.  You mix a packet of the Fiber Sweep with 1 cup of filtered water and drink it.  For those who have done the Ultimate Reset, this drink is similar to the Detox supplement from week 2, but it tastes less lemony, is a bit less gritty, a little thicker, and goes down a bit easier than Detox.  After taking my Fiber Sweep, I was counting down the minutes to lunch.  In other words, I was getting hungry.  In the future, so I can eat lunch earlier, I might skip the morning tea.

Day 1 – Afternoon

Lunch includes one Vanilla Fresh shake and then actual food!  Yes, this is only a short cleanse, but you do get to eat real food on it, unlike some other cleanses, where you drown yourself in high-sugar, low-protein juices.  Vanilla Fresh is a high-protein shake (contains 20 grams of protein) to satisfy hunger and deliver essential nutrition needed for healthy weight loss. Since I was in the office at lunch time, stranded without a blender, I shook up the Vanilla Fresh powder in 1 1/4 cups of filtered water.  It wasn’t bad, even with room-temperature water, prepared through a shaker cup.  It tasted similar to vanilla Shakeology, though a bit thicker.

For lunch, you get to exercise some creativity when it comes to the recipe.  You are instructed to have 1 serving of fruit (which you can blend into your Vanilla Fresh if you’re lucky to have a blender around or just eat by itself), 1 serving of vegetables, and 1 serving of healthy fat.  There are lists for each of these categories (fruits, veggies, fats) that show the item (e.g., blueberries) and its corresponding serving (e.g., 2/3 cup).

Last night, I decided to prepare a salad utilizing each the fruit, veggie, and fat.  For the sake of variety, I split the veggie serving in half.  So, I had 1/2 serving of spinach, 1/2 serving of cucumber, 1 serving of strawberries, and 1 serving of olive oil.  I also added some flavors from the list of “Guilt-Free Flavorings” included in the program guide, including Himalayan pink salt, basil, and red wine vinegar.

Day 1 Lunch

Day 1 Lunch

At least 1 hour after lunch, you have an afternoon snack.  Lunch held me over about 2 hours and 40 minutes before I went for the snack. I probably could’ve held out longer, but I wanted the veggie crunch!  Again, the afternoon snack is another exercise in creativity.  You are instructed to have 1 serving from the vegetable list and 1 serving from the healthy fats list.  Sorry, I forgot to take a photo of this one, but I again split the vegetables for variety and had 1/2 serving of red bell pepper, 1/2 serving of carrots, and 2 tablespoons (i.e., 1 serving) of hummus.  I added Himalayan pink salt and ground cayenne pepper to flavor it.  An hour after this, I can also choose to have tea if I want, but I didn’t have any today.

Day 1 – Evening

For dinner, it’s another Vanilla Fresh shake.  You also are provided a list of dinner recipes (most if not all of them are recipes from the Ultimate Reset, so yippie! low learning curve for me!).  You can also add an optional cup of organic vegetable broth with 1/4 cup of chopped fresh herbs.  I chose to have the veggie broth with cilantro.

For my meal, I chose one of my absolute favorite meals from the Ultimate Reset that was included in the 3DR recipe book – the carrot-seaweed medley!  In the 4 months since my Ultimate Reset ended, I had to have made this recipe for dinner at least a dozen times – carrots, edamame, arame seaweed!  (Don’t worry, not all of the 3DR recipes are as exotic as this one!)  The recipe is not identical to the Ultimate Reset book, but it’s pretty close.  The 3DR recipe does not contain Bragg’s Liquid Aminos, for example, and the cook time is actually less, which is a bonus.  For tonight’s carrot-seaweed medley, I actually ran out of red bell pepper after making tomorrow’s afternoon snack, so I substituted jalapenos for a nice spicy kick!

Day 1 Dinner

Day 1 Dinner

It’s been probably an hour since dinner ended and that meal really hit me.  Between the Vanilla Fresh shake (200 calories, mind you), the carrot-seaweed medley, and that big cup of veggie broth, I’m actually pretty stuffed.  One obvious difference between the 3DR and the Ultimate Reset is that I actually felt like I ate more food on the Reset and the portions were bigger.  With the 3DR, you are consuming so many shakes and getting so many calories that way that you are actually eating less food.  I probably prefer eating the calories rather than drinking so many of them, but at least drinking them is less time-consuming.  Read some of my old posts about how much time I spent in the grocery store, on food prep, and cooking during the Ultimate Reset, and you’ll see what I mean.

You can also choose to end your evening with some optional tea.  I just might.

Day 15

Today, I enter the final week of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset – the Restore phase.  During this phase, I’ll be eating mostly fruits and vegetables that are easily absorbed by the body for optimal nutritional value.  I think grains are completely cut out of the diet.  This phase comes after the detox phase, and it helps bring healthy bacteria back into your “freshly scrubbed” digestive tract by introducing pre- and probiotics to help restore the metabolism to maximum efficiency.  This is accomplished through the final supplement – Revitalize.  Revitalize comes in a capsule form, and its consumed three times a day.

While I am on the topic of supplements, I ran out of Mineralize yesterday.  Since Mineralize is only pink Himalayan salt, I just went out to the grocery store and bought some.  But, for those of you who don’t have the luxury of an organic supermarket in the neighorhood and need to send away for these things, make sure to have some extra pink salt on standby in case you run out.

This morning, I decided to try something new.  My usual morning routine outside of the Reset is a 30-60 minutes workout, usually something intense, like Insanity, to help wake me up and get my blood flowing in the morning.  I’ve never been a morning person, so, to me, this is essential to be minimally pleasant before noon.  On the Reset, you are not permitted to workout because your body is receiving such an intense inner body workout.  Plus, I don’t think you’re really consuming enough calories to really support your body during intense training.  Exercises like yoga, tai chi, stretching, and brisk walking are fine, but no Insanity, unfortunately.  This was one of the big adjustments for me, and I was skeptical whether I would be able to survive mornings without the jolt of adrenaline first thing in the morning.  Somehow, I’ve been surviving.  I’ve been doing free yoga videos that come on Xfinity On Demand.  They’ve been great, but I really missed Shaun T.  Today, I remembered that there are Recovery workouts that come with Insanity that I could do.  It would probably be a step up intensity-wise from the yoga I’ve been doing, but I was willing to try it.  Well, when I do Insanity, I normally substitute Core Cardio and Balance for the Recovery workout, because the Recovery workout is just too easy, doesn’t make me sweat, and isn’t enough to get my blood pumping in the morning.  Well, this morning, it got the blood pumping, and I was even sweating.  My muscles were literally shaking during some of the moves.  My legs are already feeling sore from this morning.  This makes me nervous about starting Focus T25 after the Reset is complete, but I’m going to jump on it anyway.

Also, this morning, I weighed myself for the second time of the Reset.  I’m down 2.4 pounds since day 8.  That means I’m down 4.4 pounds in only 15 days!  Not bad for a 5’2” tall chick.

During the final week of the Reset, breakfast is fruit only.  You’re supposed to choose low glycemic fruits, like berries, and avoid tropical fruits like bananas and pineapples.  I’m skeptical of the ability of fruit to keep me satisfied until lunch, but I guess it worked today.  One of my raspberries was shaped like a heart, which made this first day of the Restore phase extra special.

Day 15 Breakfast


Last night, I prepared lunch for today – an Asian “cabbage” salad, 1/4 sliced avocado, and miso soup.  I put cabbage in scare quotes because I didn’t have cabbage.  Unfortunately, the labels in the grocery store produce aisle weren’t accurate, and my husband picked up mustard greens instead of napa cabbage.  It’s okay.  We’ll make do.  We had some extra Romaine lettuce, so instead of cabbage, I chopped up some Romaine and used that instead.  This lunch had a lot of onions in it.  The Asian salad had both raw red and green onions, and the miso soup had green onions.  I had to run to back-to-back meetings in the afternoon, and was so tempted to grab some gum or a hard candy to get the taste/smell of the onions out of my mouth.  Well, none of that is allowed on the Reset!  I chewed on some herbal tea leaves (it was all that I had in the office), and that helped a little, but I still felt bad for all who I came in contact with this afternoon.

Day 15 Lunch


Dinner was awesome!  And by “awesome,” I mean baked sweet potato awesome!  Against my better judgement, I’m a huge fan of carbohydrates.  I was very happy to see a baked sweet potato on the menu for dinner.  I’ve actually never baked a sweet potato before.  It was heaven.  I’ll definitely be doing that again.  The sweet potato was accompanied by garlic veggies – broccoli, carrots, zucchini, and red bell pepper sauteed with garlic, lemon, olive oil, and Bragg’s Liquid Aminos.  They were fine.  The sweet potato stole the show.

Day 15 Dinner


Day 14 – Detoxed!

Well, there is a light at the end of the tunnel after all. I just completed 2 weeks of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset!  Only one more week left to go!  I must admit that I’m rather terrified of the final week that I begin tomorrow.  I’ll only be eating fruit for breakfast.  Other meals will have more variety, but I’m skeptical of the ability of fruit to hold me over until lunch.  Not only is there no meat or animal protein in the week ahead (child’s play, did that last week), but it doesn’t look like there’s even any grains in the final week.  No brown rice, quinoa, or millet.  Will I go mad?  We’ll see.

Like the week prior, detox actually wasn’t that difficult for me.  I actually liked the taste of the detox supplement, which you mix into 12 ounces of distilled water.  It’s texture was a little strange, but the taste was fine – tasted like lemons.  On a personal note, I, um, eliminated every day this week, which is a new habit.  I did not experience any skin rashes or acne.  While some people complain of constantly being cold throughout the detox week (since your blood is moving from your extremities to your internal organs), I did not really experience much coldness, even in the winter.  Though, my hands have felt a bit more stiff, and I feel like I have experienced light headedness on occasion.  I attribute it to the redirection of blood flow.  Some people experience emotional outbursts, and I haven’t really had that either.  Detox treated me well.  What can I say?

My husband somehow ended up with an extra detox supplement packet at the end of this week.  Hmm.  I’m wondering if he skipped a supplement or Beachbody gave him extra.  It’s a mystery.

As for the food, today, I started with a fresh fruit plate of apples and various berries (blueberries, raspberries, etc.).  For lunch, since I never got the Kabocha squash, I unfortunately had to miss out on the Kabocha squash soup.  Bummer because I love squash soups!  I replaced the soup with pinto beans and rice (see day 8).  By the way, the pinto beans and rice recipe is one of the most solid, easiest, go-to recipes in this book.  I’ve used it at least three times this week.  Great for the Reset if you don’t have much time to prepare lunch.

Dinner was a new recipe!  Dinner included edamame and roasted corn succotash, and lemon pepper kale.  Both dishes on their own were wonderful, though, together, it was a bit too much acidity for me (lemon juice, lime juice, vinegar, etc.).  The picture below shows our kale in a bowl that is way to big for the kale.  Oops.  Let’s just say I had an artistic vision.

Day 14 Dinner




Day 11 – Guide to Surviving the Reset at a Movie Theater

Okay, Challenge #4 is done.  Probably the most physically taxing challenge of them all – the Beachbody Ultimate Reset at a 24-hour Oscar-nominated best pictures marathon.

  • Challenge 1 / Week 1:  The Reset at work.
  • Challenge 2 / Week 1:  The Reset at a conference.
  • Challenge 3 / Week 2:  The Reset at a retirement dinner.
  • Challenge 4 / Week 2:  The Reset at a 24-hour Oscar-nominated best pictures marathon (in a movie theater).
  • Challenge 5 / Week 3:  The Reset during mourning and a funeral service.

I did this marathon last year, and it was so much fun!  There was no way that I was going to pass on it simply because I am on the Reset.  I can’t put my life on hold while I’m trying to improve it.  Why torture myself?  So, I proceeded with the marathon, and I’m really proud to report that I stuck to the Reset.

By “stuck to the Reset,” I mean that I consumed only Reset meals, supplements, and distilled water.  I woke up at 8 a.m. on Saturday and did not go to bed until around 8:30 a.m. on Sunday.  I’m sure that Beachbody would not approve of the sleep deprivation.  During the Reset, you are supposed to listen to your body and make sure that you are getting enough sleep.  Considering that some people blatantly cheat on their consumption during the Reset (e.g., alcohol, cookies, french fries) and still get great results, I’m sure one night of no sleep will be fine.

Knowing that there would be absolutely nothing sold at the movie theater’s concession stand that would be appropriate for the Reset diet, last night, I prepared all of the meals that my husband and I would need to for the day at the movie theater.  Since you can swap meals throughout the Reset so long as the swapped meal is the same type of meal (e.g., breakfast for breakfast) and within the same week, I modified the meals for this day, day 11.  I modified because I needed to select meals that I thought would hold up well in the theater without refrigeration and would be easy to consume in a dark theater (so, no miso soup).  Last year, when I attended this marathon, I was heavily fueled by coffee and Redbull, refined sugar (ice cream, which is atypical for me), and salty snacks.  This year, I brought the following:

  • Breakfast:  1 cup steamed spinach, 1/4 of a sliced avocado, seasoned mashed chickpeas, and nori gomasio (see day 13).
  • Lunch as schedule for day 11:  quinoa-lentil pilaf, cucumber and tomato salad, and 1/4 of a sliced avocado (see day 11).
  • Dinner:  pinto beans and rice, 1 cup steamed zucchini, and 1 cup string beans with lemon juice and olive oil (see day 8).
  • Snacks:  1 apple and 1 cup of blueberries.  I brought 2 snacks so that I could eat during the middle of the night if needed since I would normally be sleeping.
  • Hydration:  2 gallons of distilled water.

Oddly enough, last year, where I was jacked up on caffeine and sugar, I had a lot less stamina throughout the 24 hours than I did this year.  I remember that last year, I fell in and out of sleep for the last three movies (starting at 3:20 a.m.) and flat-out fell asleep during one of the movies for about 45 minutes.  This year, with no sugar or caffeine, I only had issues staying awake for the last movie, which started at 5:25 a.m.  I was actually pretty wide awake for all of the movies before that one.  I think that healthy snacks and supplements might be key to better stamina.  Another important strategy was to stretch out my meals as long as possible – both in eating them as slowly as possible, and waiting as long to eat the next meal as possible.  Honestly, I had never stayed awake so long without the aid of caffeine in my life.  While the sleep deprivation is not necessarily a healthy accomplishment, I think that this is still an accomplishment in how far I am capable of pushing my body.

Oscar-Nominated Best Pictures Showcase Schedule

Oscars Schedule

It’s appropriate to note here that I have observed generally that my stamina and mental focus have greatly improved on the Reset, while at the same time, my ability to sleep has improved.  This is odd to me in that I feel like I can stay awake as long as I need to and be able to focus pretty well, but when it is time to sleep, I can fall asleep almost as if I am turning off a light switch.  Even if I might not have felt ready for bed 10 minutes ago, as soon as I lay down in the dark and close my eyes, it doesn’t take long for me to fall asleep.  Pre-Reset, falling asleep was definitely something that could take awhile for me because I’m naturally a night owl.  Needless to say, I’m really enjoying this light-switch phenomenom!

Day 10

Today, I completed Challenge #3!

  • Challenge 1 / Week 1:  The Reset at work.
  • Challenge 2 / Week 1:  The Reset at a conference.
  • Challenge 3 / Week 2:  The Reset at a retirement dinner.
  • Challenge 4 / Week 2:  The Reset at a 24-hour Oscar-nominated best pictures marathon (in a movie theater).
  • Challenge 5 / Week 3:  The Reset during mourning and a funeral service.

(By the way, if you’ve been keeping track of the dates of this blog, you’ll know that I am a little behind on my blog posts (I’m currently on day 12), but I’m going to post as if I’m not.)

This day was a marathon.  Today, I made all of our meals for tomorrow.  Why?  Well, tomorrow, I am attending a 24-hour Oscar-nominated best pictures showcase.   I attended this event last year, and it was so much fun!  It is ill timed this year, as it occurs over the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  It is great to go to this event and get free refills on large sodas and popcorn with butter, eat other movie-theater goodies like nachos and candy, drink lots of coffee, and walk away feeling like a sleep-deprived gorged zombie.  But, not this year!  I made all of my meals, will bring all of the supplements, and stick to the Reset!  No caffeine!  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Anyway, today was a challenging day on the Reset because I had to modify the Reset schedule to attend an evening dinner event.  I had a plate full of apples, berries, and watermelon for breakfast (not pictured because I’m sure you’re bored of seeing photos of fruit by now).  Lunch was leftover sweet potato and red pepper bisque from last night (glorious even reheated) and a Greek salad (no chicken or pine nuts).  Then things got a little tricky.

Tonight, I was scheduled to attend one of my work colleague’s retirement party, which was an early dinner to be held at an Afghan restaurant.  Not only would finding something to eat at the restaurant be a challenge, but figuring out how to fit this into my Reset schedule was a challenge!  Ultimately, I decided to swap the optional snack with dinner.  So, my day would go as follows:  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Snack (supplements remaining the same).  This worked rather well!

I was pretty good at dinner.  I am always happy to indulge in a boozy beverage in a social situation where others are drinking.  However this time, I abstained.  We ordered a bunch of appetizers for the table, and I only had about a tablespoon of hummus that I scooped onto a raw tomato.  No dumplings or fried pastries for me!

For dinner, I had the vegetarian platter, which comprised sauteed spinach, eggplant, and pumpkin (no rice).  There is a picture of it below.  I took this photo from someone else, so this is not actually what I ate exactly.  I asked for mine without yogurt since we can’t have it on week 2.  Also, after having a taste of the pumpkin, I asked for a substitute and got more eggplant.  God, do I love the sauteed pumpkin at this restaurant.  Unfortunately, it was really sweet, and after asking the waitress, I learned that it had added sugar in it.  Too bad.  Anyway, the spinach and eggplant was delicious, and I don’t think I deviated from the Reset at all by enjoying these two.  I hope not, anyway.

Day 10 Dinner (Not Included in Recipe Guide) (No Yogurt Option Not Pictured)


I’ve been pretty good at avoiding the need for snacks, which you are only supposed to have after lunch if you don’t think you can make it until dinner.  Since I had an early dinner, and went out on this Friday night to attend a concert (I refuse to be a hermit on the Reset!), I had a Reset-approved snack when I got home of corn and blueberries.

Day 9

Remember those challenges that I mentioned?  Well, I’m starting challenge #3.

  • Challenge 1 / Week 1:  The Reset at work.
  • Challenge 2 / Week 1:  The Reset at a conference.
  • Challenge 3 / Week 2:  The Reset at a retirement dinner.
  • Challenge 4 / Week 2:  The Reset at a 24-hour Oscar-nominated best pictures marathon (in a movie theater).
  • Challenge 5 / Week 3:  The Reset during mourning and a funeral service.

One of my dear colleagues is retiring, so let the festivities begin!  Today, we had a wonderful going-away party for her, full of lots of wonderful meats (prosciutto, capicola,  salami) and cheese (my favorite, goat cheese, mozzarella, cheddar, and more), mac and cheese, pasta salads, soups, deviled eggs, carrot cakes, cookies, brownies – you name it, we had it, and everything looked delicious!  There were probably some things at the party that I could have had (tabbouleh, guacamole, veggie platter), but instead, I stuck with my Ultimate Reset lunch that I brought into work that morning.  After I helped set up the party, I quietly sneaked back to my office, ate my lunch, and then returned to the party on a full stomach and without temptation.  Didn’t have any of it (even though I’m pretty sure I could’ve).  Tomorrow, we are taking our retiree out to dinner, and I have a particular dish in mind from the restaurant’s menu that I am pretty sure is Reset-friendly.  So, I might take a much-needed break from cooking tomorrow afternoon, and let someone else make me something for a change, though I will be careful to stick to the Reset.  Then, Challenge #3 will be complete!

One odd thing that I’ve been experiencing is that I feel like my sense of smell is changing during the Reset.  I first noticed this with the smell of cigarette smoke.  I used to not mind the smell of cigarette smoke at all.  While I wouldn’t say I mind it now, it smells different and less comfortable to me.  Well, it smells like dirty feet and stale popcorn now.  Likewise, at this afternoon’s party, the smell of the room with all of the food in it, with all of the meat and cheese, just smelled kind of sour and unpleasant.  Strange.

Onto things more pleasant…

The breakfast today was a little different.  It was basically hummus minus the tahini.  Seasoned mashed chickpeas with nori gomasio.  Nothing better than raw garlic first thing in the morning!

Day 9 Breakfast

Day 9 Breakfast

Lunch was a half serving of the pinto beans and brown rice that I made for dinner last night.  Always make sure to look ahead to the next couple of days when you do the Reset to ensure that you can double recipes that you will be using again the near future.  The pinto beans were paired with a microgreen salad.  This time, I tried baby arugula for my green, and I must admit, not much of a fan.  It was a little too bitter for me.  Plus, I forgot to add dressing to the salad this morning.

Dinner was frenzied.  We had theater tickets for tonight (thank god, for the cabin fever associated with this Reset has been brutal).  After staying a little late at work, my husband volunteered to go out and pick up enough groceries to get us through the next couple of days, which includes a concert tomorrow night and the 24-hour movie marathon on Saturday (so, a lot of prep work needed).  He also agreed to cook tonight’s dinner.  The dinner for tonight was sweet potato and red pepper bisque and roasted asparagus with slivered almonds.  Roasted asparagus is easy, but a bisque?!  Well, my husband, who pre-Reset could hardly boil Ramen Noodles, whipped up the bisque perfectly.  It was pretty amazing, and I am so proud of him for learning how to cook a couple of things during the Reset.  His other specialty is miso soup.  I think he might have a knack for the soups.  Since we were in a rush to get to the theater, we did not have time to actually roast the asparagus, which was a total bummer to me because I adore them roasted.  Instead, we opted to steam them.  Still pretty good.  Word to the wise – double up on that bisque.  You eat it again for lunch tomorrow!

Day 9 Dinner

Day 9 Dinner

Day 8 – Let the Detox Begin!

And thus begins week 2!

I weighed myself this morning.  I lost 2 pounds during the first week of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  While 2 lbs. may not seem like much, I am celebrating this for a couple of reasons.  First, the healthy recommended safe weight loss per week is 2 lbs., so that puts me right where I should be.  Second, I am only 5 foot 2 inches.  I’m short.  If I can lose 2 lbs. per week on the Reset, that’s 6 lbs. total, and I would be happy to take that.  Third, the Reset, to me at least, is not all about losing weight.  While losing weight is certainly a side effect of living a healthy life, my main focus is to feel better – better mood, increased energy, more productive sleep – and I am beginning to experience those benefits.  Finally, losing those 2 lbs. finally brought me into a “normal” BMI (24.8!).  I had technically been considered to be “overweight.”  Now, I know, the BMI is criticized a lot for not taking many factors into account (including muscle mass), and that outside of the BMI number, I am a very healthy and active person.  Nevertheless, it really means a lot to me that I was able to break past a weight loss plateau and finally get to a healthy and normal BMI.  I haven’t been there in years.

Week 2 of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset introduces a new supplement into the day – Detox.  Detox, similar to alkalinize, is a powder that you mix into water.  You drink it three times a day – before breakfast, before lunch, and before dinner.  A lot of people find the taste repulsive, but I actually didn’t mind it at all.  It tastes kind of like lemons, though the texture is a little strange (it is grainy).  The detox powder has got a number of ingredients, like chia seed, milk thistle, a camu-camu, that helps remove toxins and waste in the colon.  In the Reset instructional video, it is described as a gentle colon cleanse that won’t leave you parked by the bathroom.  TMI maybe?  Well, get over it.  You’re reading a blog about a detox program – what did you expect?!  While one obvious way to get rid of toxic waste is via the digestive tract, one other way that people experience detox is through our largest organ, the skin, so I am really hoping not to experience breakouts during this week.

Detox Supplement


In week 2, you completely cut out animal proteins, including dairy.  This isn’t really a drastic change from week 1 if you followed the scheduled meals in the guidebook.  Unless you doubled up on certain recipes, you only have chicken and salmon once in week 1.  You do have yogurt several times for breakfast.  I feel like I’ve been transitioning gradually to this point, and it shouldn’t be too much of a shock.

Breakfast for day 8 was a fresh fruit plate.  One of many fruit plates in store for me in the next 2 weeks (week 3’s breakfasts entirely comprise fruit).  Though I considered my diet pretty healthy before the Reset, I was definitely guilty of not incorporating enough fruit into my diet.  So, the Reset is really helping me get into the habit of eating more fruit.

Day 8 Breakfast

Day 8 Breakfast

Lunch was my old friend, the microgreen salad, but with avocado added to it.

Day 8 Lunch

Day 8 Lunch

Finally, dinner included pinto beans and brown rice, steamed zucchini, and string beans with lemon and olive oil.  It was a lot of food.  Pretty good, though nothing miraculous.  Though I definitely enjoyed how quick and easy this one was to make (relative to other dinners at least).

Day 9 Dinner

Day 8 Dinner

First day of the “Release” phase – Done!

Day 7 – Reclaimed!

This was my last day of the first week of the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  I made it 7 days of the 21-day program!  One-third of the way there!  The Reset has been quite a journey so far, and I’m looking forward to the completing the rest of the 21 days!  The Reset hasn’t been as difficult as I expected it to be (so far).

There are a couple of things that I have really come to enjoy during the first 7 days of the Reset.  For one, my love of tempeh.  The tempeh recipes that I’ve learned will be incorporated into my life post-Reset, and I cannot wait to make the nori rolls with smokey tempeh again.  I’ve come to really enjoy pumpkin seeds, and I had no idea that I could purchase them year-round.  The pumpkin seeds are the highlight of the microgreen salad that I make almost every day.  I also love the fact that I’m not wasting produce.  Before the Reset, it seemed that I would always end up wasting so much of the produce that I bought.  On the Reset, I am buying so much produce, and I’m eating it quickly and nothing is going bad.  My husband has enjoyed all of the salt that he gets to consume on the diet, albeit pink Himalayan salt, which is full of minerals that normal salts, not even sea salt, contain.

The past week, we’ve both been sleeping better, which I did not think could actually happen for me.  Pre-Reset, I slept pretty well – nice, long deep sleeps.  My first week of the Reset, I have been sleeping even deeper, and more importantly, I feel more well-rested on less sleep.  Pre-Reset, I would sleep 12 hours (sometimes more) on the weekends to catch up on sleep and even then wake up feeling tired.  The first weekend of the Reset, I didn’t sleep nearly that long.  I’ve never been a morning person.  And while I definitely still not a morning person, on weekdays during the Reset, I am still groggy and annoyed when I wake up, but I feel like I snap out of it a lot faster, and I feel more rested after 6-7 hours of sleep than I used to.  I have also struggled with mental fuzziness  for awhile and lack of energy.  On the Reset, my mental clarity and focus and energy have improved.  I’ve learned that I do not, in fact, need coffee to make it through the day, which for a former Starbucks barista, is a hard truth to swallow.  Finally, I broke a cycle of weekend indulgences, in glorious things like alcohol and brunch and fancy meals.  While I fully expect to indulge post-Reset, I can perhaps do so a bit more consciously and know that I don’t have to every weekend.

Last day of week 1, I bid farewell to animal proteins.  Believe it or not, it wasn’t that bittersweet of a farewell.  I’ve really enjoyed the vegan recipes that I have been eating, and I know there are more good recipes in store for me as I cut out fish, chicken, and yogurt.  I’m looking to the next 2 weeks with optimism.

Breakfast for day 7 was oatmeal with apples and flax seeds with yogurt.  What I’ve come to really appreciate about the breakfasts is that they are all pretty quick and easy (unlike some lunches and dinners).

Day 7 Breakfast


Lunch was zucchini-cashew soup and microgreens salad.  I made a double batch of zucchini-cashew soup the night before luckily.  Between lunch and dinner, I had a snack.  Snacks are optional during the Reset, and you should only have them if you feel like you cannot make it to dinner.  I was fortunate enough to have a West Wing tour of the White House (how freakin’ cool is that?!) scheduled for this evening, so in an attempt to hold me over until dinner, and as a way to kiss goodbye to animal proteins, I sunk my teeth into a nice hard-boiled egg.

Finally, dinner was one of my new favorites:  tempeh!  The baked tempeh was marinated in Bragg’s, sesame oil, garlic, honey, and apple cider vinegar, served with steamed broccoli and brown rice.  Great way to end week 1.

Day 7 Dinner


Day 5

Everything that I’ve been hearing and reading about the Beachbody Ultimate Reset says that days 3 through 5 are the most challenging.  Beachbody recommends starting the Reset on a Wednesday specifically so that you can avoid these difficult days falling on work days (Monday through Friday for most folks). 

I am almost done with day 5 and have not really felt particularly challenged yet.  I went into the Reset knowing that I would be saying no to drugs and alcohol for 21 days (drugs = caffeine. Why, what were you thinking?!).  Resisting caffeine and alcohol is more of a psychological shift than a physiological pain for me.  Despite the fact that I would drink at least one cup of coffee during work days and pump up on Redbull on the weekends, I haven’t really experienced any caffeine withdrawal.  While I would like to be drinking alcohol on Friday and Saturday nights (especially outside on nice days like we’ve had in DC this weekend), I can resist it.  I think that days 3 through 5 might be really hard for people who are coming into the Reset with real addictions to things like caffeine and sugar, and for people who are making drastic dietary changes.  Pre-Reset, I normally ate things like quinoa and seaweed (think: sushi, miso soup), and stayed away from sugar and fast food.  So, I’m lucky in that this isn’t that hard (so far!).  The hardest part for me has really been the planning.  

Day 5 breakfast was supposed to include farina with walnuts, apples, and maple syrup.  Now, when I went grocery shopping according to the grocery list the Beachbody compiled for week 1, “rice cereal” was on the list but “farina” was not.  As a result, I ended up buying a hot brown rice grits-type cereal, not actual farina.  I doubt it’s a big deal.  Also, instead of maple syrup, I used raw agave nectar because I opted not to spend the money on maple syrup that it didn’t seem like we really used that much throughout the program.  It turns out maple syrup is used a lot more than agave nectar, so I am kind of regretting that choice.  But, boy, is agave nectar delicious!  Can’t say I mind much.

Day 5 Breakfast



Lunch included a quinoa salad and hummus and raw veggies.  I love hummus, so I was very happy to see that the recipe called for a whopping 1/2 cup of hummus!  I was a pretty happy girl for lunch.

Day 5 Lunch


The Reset recipes are slowly taking out animal proteins.  In retrospect, I don’t think that I had any today (unless there was something in the hummus).  It’s really amazing how veggies can fill you up until dinner time, which I will be having soon.

Today was another beautiful day in the District, so my husband and I went out for a couple of nice long walks.  You are not permitted to do strenuous workouts during the Reset – only walking, yoga, tai chi, or stretching.  Since I am used to doing high-intensity cardio workouts (Insanity is one of my favorites) in mornings before heading into the office, this is a big change for me.  On day 1, I tried the Tai Cheng sample workout that comes with the Reset DVDs.  Tai Cheng is basically a low-impact Tai Chi program developed by Dr. Mark Cheng.  While I could see the value of the workout, it was really putting me to sleep first thing in the morning, and I preferred the 20-minute yoga workout that I did the following day.  The sun salutations really helped wake me up a little bit in the morning, and since I perpetually drag early in the day, that’s essential for me in a morning exercise routine.  Did I sweat?  No.  Did my heart rate go up?  No, not really.  I can’t wait to go back to my normal exercise routines after the Reset.  My goal is to begin with Focus T25, then do Insanity, and then Insanity the Asylum.  I already own and have completed each of these, but I feel like I will really get the most benefit out of them doing them in sequence again after the Reset.  I’d say the next 5 months are pretty well planned.  Can’t wait!

The final meal of today is miso soup (my husband’s specialty!), stir-fried veggies, brown rice, and nori gomasio.  I made an extra batch of stir-fried veggies last night, have a big batch of brown rice in the fridge, and a bunch of nori gomasio, so my evening looks pretty easy!  I’m going to go start prepping for tomorrow now.  No rest in the Reset.