Surviving the Blueprint Cleanse: 3 Days. 18 Juices. No Quitting.

blue

I have never participated in any kind of “cleanse” or fast, save for one Yom Kippur in college when I fasted for the better part of a day and broke it with a vile D.P. Dough calzone. It was not what one would call a healthful experience.

And I have always been skeptical about juice cleanses. As soon as one finishes and eats a hamburger they immediately gain back whatever water weight they have dropped. But as a person who eats clean 90% of the time, I have to believe that if a juice cleanse could jump start a couple pounds of nagging baby weight for anyone, it’s me.

So I decided to give Blueprint Cleanse a whirl. After all, a billion dollar business can’t be wrong, right? Oh, wait, so were thighmasters. No matter! It’s only three days so what do I have to lose besides half my intestinal tract?

I was told to prepare for the cleanse by eating extra clean the day before. I didn’t quit coffee but did finish the day with a nice salad and my a homemade banana whip (bananas + almond milk + vitamix = ice cream).

Day One

As luck would have it, snow delayed the morning arrival of my juices. For several hours. As instructed, I drank loads of herbal tea and, as not instructed, I ate an apple. I also chewed a forbidden piece of gum. Not off to the best start. By noon I was getting antsy so I went to Whole Foods to purchase a single Blueprint juice. They didn’t have the green juice that was meant to be the first of the day, so I went with the #6 vanilla cashew milk. It was delicious – like a milkshake! And no wonder – it was supposed to be the last drink of the day! Oops – looks like we are starting with dessert.

photo 1
I should really clean my room.

When my package finally arrived I was thrilled. I also thought “Hey, that’s a lot of plastic!” I downed the actual #1 green juice which at first tasted strongly of celery. But after a few sips I began to strangely enjoy it.

#2 is pineapple/apple/mint and it is delicious. Like a mojito without the alcohol.

#3 is more green juice. It is 4 p.m. and I am starting to feel inexplicably depressed. Probably because this is around the time I would start making dinner. Yes, we eat at 5 p.m.

#4 is the Spicy Lemonade I had been dreading. But surprisingly I really like it and it actually curbs my hunger.

#5 is yet again the green juice. And sadly I have already had #6 for breakfast. But fortunately it almost bed time so now the only thing left to do is sleep.

Day Two

I woke up feeling OK – no more hungry than usual. And I am down two pounds. Brilliant.

I drank my usual morning green tea until around 8:30 when I started my first green juice of the day. I feel fine during my workout and drink #2 afterward. But then I come home to the smell of fried chicken and gravy which my babysitter has decided to cook for my husband’s dinner since I will not be cooking (yes, he can cook for himself, it was just a nice gesture). So now I am suddenly starving.

I drink #3 around 1:30 and I am feeling hungry and a little pissed off. Mostly, I’m pissed because I keep reading that after the cleanse you are supposed to only eat fruits and vegetables for a few days. The last thing I want to do is mitigate all this hard work – but are you kidding me??

Now it is 2:30 p.m. So much for mental clarity as I have no recollection as to why I just opened this browser. Also, my baby’s formula is starting to look appetizing so I am drinking #4.

At 3 pm I take a few bites of cucumber (an acceptable “cheat”) and it is awesome.

By dinnertime I am suicidal watching my family eat real food. I drink #5 and then my “dessert” #6. I am now questioning the purpose of all of this and look forward to blissful sleep. Fortunately I pass out at 8 p.m.

Day Three

I always feel less hungry in the morning. Especially when I wake to find that I have lost another two pounds and I am down to my pre-pregnancy weight! (However, my body looks like it has been completely ravaged beyond repair).

I don’t feel great during my workout. Despite all the claims of an energy boost I feel less strength and endurance as usual, but I get through it without feeling too awful.

However, my 11 a.m. and juice #2 I am starting to question everything in life and seriously considering quitting this thing.

Once again, at 1:30 I drink #3 and feel hungry and pissed off. It might be time for more cucumber. I also have an extra bottle of the delicious #6 so I decide periodic swigs is an acceptable cheat.

Around 3:30 I decide to start cooking some vegetable soup to eat tomorrow. I am actually finding the idea of a raw onion appealing. Cooking while fasting takes a special kind of masochist.

photo 2

I prepare to drink my final juice while my 4-year-old is begging for more ice cream because he is sooooo hungry. And this final night I am in a total fog when I finally fall asleep.

The Day After:

I wake up at 5:30 a.m. feeling strangely good. I am five pounds lighter than when I began. I also feel the need to mention at this point that I have not spent any extra time in the bathroom during this cleanse so the weight loss was not just a massive enema.

I’m not particularly hungry. In fact, the idea of pizza does not entice me. If anything I want fruit and vegetables – which is a good thing since that is all I am permitted to eat. I go downstairs and eat a strawberry and it tastes weird.

First solid selfie - I am less than impressed.
First solid selfie – I am less than impressed.

So does a bite of apple. This isn’t good. So I sip some herbal tea for a while and prepare to make a green smoothie with apples and spinach. And it makes me feel ill.

So I do what so many other cultures do and have some of my vegetable soup for breakfast. Much better!

I need to speak at a conference today so I am definitely having some coffee. There is no non-dairy creamer available so I drink it black, which tastes strangely OK. After that my energy levels soar – which could be from my first taste of caffeine or an actual result of the juice cleanse. I skip the boxed lunch at the conference and head home for a surprisingly nourishing salad of spinach, cucumber, and avocado with lemon juice and olive oil. I prepare some roasted cauliflower to go along with more of my soup for dinner and really feel like I accomplished something with this cleanse.

However, by 8 p.m. I cave and eat a bowl of oats which makes me feel a little ill. The following evening I split a massive chocolate concoction with my son and the following day I gorge on pizza. I realize that the five pounds I lost will probably reappear within the week.

But that wasn’t the entire purpose. In fact, some of this was just a test of my own willpower. Could I survive for three days on nothing but lettuce juice? Yes, I could. So it’s good to know that if I were stranded on a dessert island with nothing but coconuts I would not die immediately.

What I’ve really learned is that we do not need nearly as much food as we think we do. Sometimes I feel like I’m going to die if I don’t have dessert. But clearly my overeating has been a combination of mental and possible physical factors from just eating as most Americans do.

That said, I will not be giving up gluten. Or meat. Or cheese. I will ease back into eating a mostly organic diet of every food group and occasionally house a pan of Betty Crocker brownies. Some things are just worth it.

But there is definitely a new awareness of how my body responds to food, or lack of it. And I feel really proud of myself for taking on something so intimidating and actually following through.

Would I do the Blueprint Cleanse again?

Only if I receive an invitation to walk the red carpet at the Academy Awards. Apart from that, I’ll take back the weight and enjoy the physical, social, and emotional pleasure of food.

Oh, and if that awards invitation does arrive, I’ll be purchasing the much cheaper knock-off version. You can also purchase the Blueprint Cleanse on FreshDirect and use my link to get $100 off! So that is like two days of the cleanse for free!

Disclosure: Amazingly, no one paid me to do this. I shelled out the whole $200 on my own plus $11.99 for the extra juice on day one. Please feel free to click on my actual affiliate links to help pay for my juice debt.

 



  • Robyn26

    Wow. I love this! i haven’t hear of this book, but I am very interested in reading it! We are on the band wagon of getting healthy. I have been reading the book, “Get Balanced, Get Blissed: Nourishment for Body, Mind, and Soul”http://liveblissnow.com/ by author Lynne Goldberg. I love it! It is helping to find balance in my life!

  • I wish I could fast! It isn’t recommended for folks without a gall bladder 🙁

  • Lindsay

    Thanks for sharing Paige – I’ve only done one juice cleanse and it was a bit of a roller coaster. I think it’s good to give our digestive systems a break from time to time, and sounds like you’re still getting good nutrients along the way!

  • I love this recap! I felt very similar sarcasm and bitterness on my cleanse and am glad that you found it amusing only in retrospect the same way I did 🙂 I am debating a shorter cleanse at some point also – 3 days sounds way better than the 28 days of insanity I did!

  • paigewolf

    28 days? I hope it was more than juice!

  • Leigh G

    I do not think I can ever do a cleanse but I have wanted to. I think I would feel that way you felt on day 3, three hours into the fast.

  • Donna Wren

    Me, too, Robyn. I will look into your book recommend as well. Sounds very interesting!

  • Sara Gabriela Valladolid

    Hi, I have appreciated your honesty in doing this cleanse. I have also skimmed through your book as well. I am wondering what your vegetable soup recipe is. Packing a lunch for work is always a struggle and I am always looking for great vegetable soups. Thank you, Sara

  • paigewolf

    Here is my soup recipe – it is great because you can do so much with it. Enjoy!! http://www.spitthatoutthebook.com/2014/03/taste-delicious/

  • Sara Gabriela Valladolid

    Thank you!

  • Lauren

    hi! is the $100 off coupon still valid? you have inspired me! Thank you for this!!

  • Paige Wolf

    Yes the Fresh Direct link should still work! 🙂

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  • LalaP311

    Hi!

    Thank you so much for this post. I was searching for third person experiences on these juice cleanses and found yours. Your writing is lighthearted and warm. I was laughing to the core.

    Your experience has motivated me to eventually try a cleanse on my own. I’ll probably ease into it with a few juices before I do all juice. One question – when you say “However, my body looks like it has been completely ravaged beyond repair” what exactly do you mean?

    I know the cleanse is only a jumpstart to a healthy lifestyle, but I’m concerned on the effects it will have on my physique.

    Thanks!
    Laura

  • paigewolf

    Hi Laura! That comment refers to my post baby body – not to anything to do with the juice cleanse 🙂 hope that helps!!

  • paigewolf

    The code should work!

  • Jennifer Kosta

    I have been looking into doing a juice cleanse as of late. A dear friend of mine recently juiced for 60 days!! And she lost 100 lbs! Now her cleanse was advised by her doctor and she was with her every step of the way! Making sure she was getting the proper nourishment and calorie intake and my friend looks and feels better than ever! I’m sharing this because the idea of juicing more than a day or two seems IMPOSSIBLE (to me)! And even she said the first 4 or 5 days was horrible! But after about a week it didn’t phase her to see people eat. She saved a LOT of money on groceries and her mental/physical health is also great now too. She finished the cleanse about two weeks ago and has decided to stick w| an all vegan diet, which I do NOT intend to do, haha. But she is so inspiring! As is this article. She had no intentions of juicing for more than 10 days, but at the end of 10, she said “let’s go for 30” and by the time she got to 30 days and was 60 lbs down, and completely used to the diet at this point she continued for 30 more days.

    Point being…….its 3:45 on day one and I want Taco Bell, hahaha. So, we shall see between my friend and this (awesome) blog I can manage to make it through. Ha

  • ginabad

    I think you’re brave to even try a juice cleanse for 3 whole days! Great read, I laughed all the way through 🙂 Glad it worked for you.

  • I could not do it. Good for you!

  • I laughed out loud reading your post. I tried fasting for a day and nearly gnawed my arm off. I love food too much to ever give it up for a liquid health beverage. Although, I do have 10 pounds to lose before I put on my bathing suit this summer….

  • mindfulmomma

    I’ve never tried a juice cleanse, however I’ve been doing a semi-fasting diet that involves eating only 500 calories (of solid food, not juice) for 2 days a week and then eating normally the rest of the week. It’s tough (and I get very HANGRY) but it’s working!

  • This is hilarious… And I will never try a juice cleanse. 😉 This also makes me antsy to read your book!

  • Have you tried https://www.juice-2-u.com ? They have great and different organic juice variance and the juices are non-HPP, which means they are bottled without high pressure processing. Their juices never have GMO’s or chemical additives or preservative. That is what I like about Juice 2 u product. You can check it out too.

  • Kristina_Wong

    This was great, and really funny. Thanks!!

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