Updated: Feb 19, 2019
I'm coming at you today feeling much better.
I'm sure it was a combination of all my new lifestyle habits.
Of course I can't pick one and say here is the answer to surviving a detox.
Not how it works.
You have to incorporate them all.
Instead, I'll tell you about the 5 changes I've made to make room for all this detox "fluff".
First, why am I on a detox?
Lots of reasons. I will get into the long haul soon.
But mainly, because of my sluggish liver diagnosis.
I need to push out all the medication that's been stored in my liver throughout the years.
It's true, people. NSAIDS do wreck havoc on our organ systems.
If you haven't detoxed, its comparable to medication withdrawal.
It's not fun.
Try quitting sugar for ten days, or coffee... then tell me how that feels.
Better yet, quit both at the same time.
Good luck. It's hard.
But you can do it! (if you want to, this is not me telling you to)
A bit of a backlog:
1. Last February, I stopped my pain medication in preparation for my gastric scanning. I never started them again.
2. In August, Mayo Pain Rehab Clinic helped me stop my Celebrex and my muscle relaxers.
3. In September, I stopped consuming dairy. All animal products followed shortly after.
4. By November, I really started to cut out all processed foods and was sticking to whole food, plant based diet. I still dabbled with preservatives in canned foods, some store-bought mock cheeses, sauces, spreads, etc.
5. In December, under the supervision of my doctor, I withdrew from my Cymbalta. A medication I used for nerve pain that never actually worked.
6. In February, I said goodbye to all unnatural products. You know, those canned foods, mock cheeses (you can make your own!), etc.
7. In March, I started the liver detox program (which will be outlined in a future post).
Let's move on tho those changes I made in my life so detox/withdrawal runs smooth:
1. DO IT SLOW
(Which is why I outlined mine above.) Pick one thing at a time and give it your all. Detox and withdrawal are hard. It is uncomfortable. It is frustrating. It makes you moody and irritable. It causes fatigue, pain and weird sensations. Do it slow.
2. MAKE AN ACCOMPLISHMENT LIST
Some of mine would be: Having to set alarms for my heart rate medication because I'm feeling so good I forget to take it. Also, this is the only Pharma drug I am still on. There is another accomplishment. I no longer see black spots in my vision. My blood sugar hasn't tanked since September! I can run, (yes, run ☺️) up the stairs. My shower chair is gone. I did my first backbend today in probably eight years.
These lists are important. There will be days you need to refer to it. You will have moments where you feel swallowed by negative emotions and feelings of worthlessness. I gets hard to see accomplishments when random sensations, pain and fatigue are plaguing you. This list can turn it around for you. Keep it close and utilize it.
Also, this is a great tool to use in the "real world" (whatever that is). We so often forget about all our good things. Take note of them and remind yourself daily.
3. REALIGN YOUR SCHEDULE
This one was huge for me. The detox and withdrawal symptoms I've endured over the last year made some days feel impossible. I was constantly getting swept back in the cycle of highs and lows. I would knock a couple days out of the park and then the cycle of exhaustion would set in. Eventually, I stopped being so hard on myself and realized how hard my body was working for me. I needed to cut myself a break; give my body what it was asking for.
I now give myself an extra hour of sleep every night during the height of my detox/withdrawal. This usually lasts 7-14 days for me. Whether it is to bed an hour earlier or up an hour later, I always give myself an extra hour. If I need two extra hours, I never sleep in two hours late. If I need two hours and can't get to bed that soon, I add one hour in the evening and sleep in an hour or go to bed two hours early. This is the main source of benefit for me and my body.
My workouts slow down too. On top of the body working hard to heal and repair, without the proper fuel due to lack of food intake because of symptoms, workouts get hard. I cut my cardio down to 30 minutes to 20 each day and lower reps in my functional workouts. If I normally do 4 sets of 10, I would only do 3 sets of 10.
4. FUEL YOUR BODY WITH GOOD STUFF
This is a personal thing, but I will tell you what works for me and my body. Greens. All the greens. My body really likes leafy greens during a detox/withdrawal. I usually come up with a couple great salad combos and stick to those for lunches and many dinners too.
For breakfast I like fruit. It can be raw or in smoothie form. Often it's a banana with almond butter wrapped in lettuce (don't knock it until you try it). The banana combo combines the three things that help me feel my best; healthy fats, glucose and greens.
I also love potatoes as a dinner option. I like them all, but my favorite is Japanese sweet potato (purple on the outside, white in the middle). I also love nuts and seeds.
5. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH GOOD PEOPLE
We often forget about this one and feel it is selfish to enjoy time with those we love before we have finished our tasks. Breaking news, people. Our tasks will never be finished. Ever. There is always something that needs to be done. But, we can't do it when we are feeling like a zero. That is when procrastination sets in. We get overwhelmed and feel like we can't do anything.
Get yourself a boost from a friend, a family member or a coworker. Go have dinner, do some bowling, meet up with a classmate at a coffee shop and enjoy their company without talking about school or the people in it. Get out your sleds and hit the hills. Go for a hike. Take a swim. Hook a line. The options are endless.
We will always feel guilt about what we won't be getting done at home before we go, but once we are there, it is exactly what we need. Don't be afraid, go get yourself some go-go juice from those really awesome people in your life.
On the contrary, it is okay to remove yourself from toxicity. It is really hard to "be good", "do good" and "follow protocol" when those around you don't support you or are making bad habits themselves. It is easy to get swept into the trap. It's okay if you need a break from certain individuals while you are trying to better your inner self. It doesn't mean they can never be a part of your life again, but a temporary break may be what you need to heal. & that's okay.
Remember, do it for you.
Everything and everybody will fall into place when it's time.
Let yourself heal.
Suggestion : choose something from my 5 changes to work on this week. Form a new/better habit, make a list of accomplishments you can reference, get an extra hour of sleep, get a few workouts in, clean up your diet, visit some friends. Just pick something.
One thing is all it takes.
" So, what if, instead of thinking about solving your whole life, you just think about adding additional good things. One at a time. Just let your pile of good things grow. "