Three-Day Cleanse: Lessons Learned

three-day cleanse tips | kale and aleI just finished a three-day cleanse as part of my January reset (read about why I picked reset as my word of the month and what it means to me). I cringe at the word cleanse, as I feel it has negative connotations. The one I did was based on foods that are considered detoxifying and superfoods (like carrots, turmeric, garlic and greens), meant to give your body a chance to balance out. It had a smoothie and nuts for breakfast, snacks and full meals through the day. Water and tea were OK. Exactly what I was looking for.

I went on the cleanse because I was feeling bloated from the holidays and travel, and I was trying to have a refresh. I am planning a longer trip with plenty of food and drink in the late summer, and could see this cleanse coming in handy upon my return; I would do it again to get back on track and refresh my digestive system.

Tips For a Cleanse

I’ve gone a full day back after the cleanse, and I learned a few things for when I or you go on one:

  • Make meals simple, wholesome and filling when feeling like a mini-reset is needed
  • Eat less at night after dinner (no late-night nachos) and have more mindful snacking overall. The snacks were flavorful and filling: roasted chickpeas; raw vegetables and hummus; and cucumbers with cayenne, salt, lemon and olive oil.
  • Incorporate more smoothies into the mix. I found this great list of detox smoothies I went off, and plan to make a different one for breakfast every so often.
  • Continue to drink tea in the afternoon when I want to reach for coffee
  • Make more marinades, sauces and dressings myself. They’re easy, quick, flavorful and earlier than bottled, store-bought condiments.

Have you been on a cleanse? What did you think or do you have any tips you learned?

January 2017: Reset

My word for the month is “reset.” No better time than a new year to get back to a previous state.
While a lot of people were calling 2016 “the worst,” it was mostly very good to me: I began the year with a Caribbean beach vacation, got engaged, got asked to be in my brother’s wedding and got married. I joined two book clubs that have connected me with great women reading powerful books, got accepted to volunteer at Louie’s rescue organization and figured out more who I am and what I want in life.

After a great long start, the finally two months brought events that put me in a funk: My candidate lost the presidential election, which shocked me, and after a great Thanksgiving with close family, we suddenly lost one of those people 15 days later. This person lived a full life staying true to himself and giving to other people and organizations. Both events put me in a funk and reminded me I need to look outward, build stronger relationships, give to others and stand for what I believe.

Reset my food, attitude and expectations

And, although I’ve been working out more regularly recently, I feel like my health has gone off track. So this week I’m going through three days of cleaner eating. I hesitate to call it a cleanse. My neighbor suggested it’s a reset, and I like that. It’s filled with detoxifying foods and cuts out coffee and alcohol. I’ve never done anything like this and have had daily coffee for 20 years, so stay tuned on how it goes. The easiest way to watch is to follow my Instagram stories at @KaleAndAle.

So I’ve decided this month will be about resetting–my system, my attitude, my actions. And that starts right away. As spoofed after the election on Saturday Night Live, I need to get out of the bubble. Only this wasn’t funny, since it hot so close to home and wasn’t a parody.

What actions or attributes are you focusing on in the new month or year?

Focus: Word of 2016

focus word of 2016 KaleandAle.com

This week I noticed people talking about having a word of the year, so I inquired about it, as it’s a new concept to me. Have you heard of adopting a word of the year?

I really liked the idea and how it built on my 2016 goals. I’m still working on the goals, but love boiling what I want to work on—in all aspects of life—down to one word. Like setting an intention in yoga—something that means a lot to me—I want to choose a word that fits into all aspects of life. Like a phrase that speaks to me, “this is where I am now,” the best word to sum up my hopes for the year is “focus.” I want to apply this to all aspects of my life.

With focus I hope to:

  • Be in the present at all times
  • Realize what needs to be done to achieve the future I want
  • Prioritize in all parts of life

I make lists, multitask and sometimes overextend myself, not fully giving any one thing my attention. I know that’s not fair to any one thing or person. A bad habit I’m working on breaking is saying “what” when someone says something, not because I didn’t hear or understand, but because I was doing something else so it takes an extra second to process.

By focusing on one thing at a time I can give that my full attention. I’m looking forward to incorporating more focus into my life and remembering my intention for 2016.

Do you have a word of the year? How do you pick your it or how does it impact you through the year?

Looking to 2016

 

2016 goals | Resolutions | Kale and Ale

Flickr user Maurice took the original image, which has been modified.

How can it be 2016 already? 2015 was the year I’d been working toward for many years, so as long as 2016 stays about the same, I’ll be happy. What about you?

To get caught up, I’ve shared my 2015 recaps on food, drink and fitness. Looking forward to 2016, the main theme is to keep bettering and improving myself from within. I’ve never been one for resolutions, but with continuous growth comes evaluation and deciding if one is on the right path, or if the path needs to be adjusted. A new year is a great time for that assessment.

The key things I want to focus on are as follows. What do you hope to accomplish or improve?

Fitness

In 2015 I ran one race and fewer miles than any year since taking up running. I don’t have friends here that run races like I did in Florida. This year I hope to find a running community or make a point to run a longer-distace race (10k or above) to challenge myself.

With that, I want to work on weight training. The past few months I’ve been going to the gym three days a week and hope to devote one of those days to weight training. The goal is to lose some stubborn pounds that cold winters have brought on, and to tone and strengthen my body by adding an element to my workouts that cardio alone isn’t providing.

Food

This big thing here is to grow and expand my garden, both in physical size and what is being grown. Last year I ended up with a lot of tomatoes and peppers and hope to add more variety this year. What might you suggest I grow that works well for the upper Midwest?

Personal Growth

2015 brought me together with the Twin Cities blogging community, and I want to get more involved in 2016. The connections and support this group has is great. I also want to learn one new thing a month I can apply to my blog and communications overall.

Beyond that, I want to foster more in real life connections I have, meeting up with peers, making it a point to set aside time to see friends, and Skype those far away more often. This is where I get a lot of satisfaction, having a few well-developed friendships.

What are your goals/hopes/dreams for 2016? Please leave them in the comments below.

2015 In Review: Fitness

2015 year in review: Fitness | Kale and Ale

This is the second in a series featuring highlights from 2015. Today I take a look at activities and trips I’ve enjoyed this year. Monday we discussed food and Friday looks at drinks I’ve had and made this year. Share your highlights of each topic in the comments below!

Biking

This spring I bought a used bike when my old bike (and I mean old–its the only bike I’ve had since middle school) was damaged beyond repair. This hybrid bike serves my needs and then some, taking me on nice summer bike rides and getting me to and from beer events nearby. I love living near bike paths and having another alternative to a car.

Hiking

This year I took up hiking, in preparation for my summer trip to the Grand Canyon and Zion national parks! I have wanted to visit Zion for a while and go somewhere new, so when Aaron and I were looking for a trip we could fly direct from the Twin Cities and do something different, we decided to go to Vegas and visit the parks, making a big loop.

But first, we had to break in our hiking shoes, so this summer we went to state parks around the Twin Cities, hiking in the morning and stopping at a brewery or winery after. I hope to do more of this in the spring/summer of 2016, as it’s a great day trip and way to explore Minnesota. See write-ups of various day trips.

Back to Zion and Grand Canyon: the trip was amazing. There are no words, so I’ll leave a slideshow right here.

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Running

I only ran one race this year-something I need to change in 2016. The race was fun and unique: a trail run using nature as its obstacle course. It coincided with Oktoberfest, so at the end runners were rewarded with, as you can guess, a beer! Read more about my adventure running the Timber Trek.

Timber Trek end | KaleAndAle.com

A muddy, wet and hay filled mess. It was fun.

As I said, I hope to partake in more races next year. I don’t have the group who runs events here like I do in South Florida, but I want to push myself at a fun event. I think I’m going to run a Spartan Race [note: affiliate link] in 2016, specifically probably the short event in Minnesota next June. Who’s with me!?!? Seriously! To prep, I plan to do some weight training this winter.

If you want to run with me in June or another race in 2016, Spartan Race is giving away a free event to one reader of Kale and Ale! And even if you don’t win the giveaway below, there are deals going on now.

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Giveaway: Now closed

Spartan Race is giving one reader of Kale and Ale entry to a 2016 Spartan Race in the continental U.S., valued between $75 and $225, depending on the style and length of the race. The giveaway is good for open heats only, which is a non-confirmed start time.

You must be 18 or older to enter. The contest starts at midnight Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015, and runs until the end of Monday, Dec. 14, 2015, Central U.S. time. Winner will be picked at random via Rafflecopter. Learn more about Spartan Races [affiliate link] including styles, location and what to expect.

a Rafflecopter giveaway