Monday, March 19, 2012

My 15-Day Reboot, Part 1

I'm on a 15-day "reboot" right now, and day 3 is drawing to a close.  The decision to do this was inspired by my recent viewing of Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.  For those of you who haven't already seen it (and if you haven't, you should!  Find it on Netflix or check it out of the library!), the film follows a guy named Joe, who suffers from obesity and an autoimmune disorder and embarks upon a 60-day juice fast in an attempt to cure himself of both conditions.  The fast is a success, you see him lose weight as the film is being made, and about halfway through he inspires a random stranger, who is also obese and suffering from the same autoimmune disease, to do the 60-day juice fast. 

Since the film was completed, Joe has started this whole "reboot" concept - learn more on the Reboot Your Life website - which encourages people to embrace healthy eating and lifestyle changes by committing to a "reboot" in which they consume nothing but fruits and vegetables (as in no beans, no nuts, no grains), often in juice form only, so that the body can benefit from daily megadoses of phytonutrients.  I've been intrigued by the idea since watching the film, and I decided before running the Columbia Marathon that the second half of March would be the best time to give it a try, since I'm taking the rest of the month off from running and I just might benefit in ways I don't expect.  Last week I loaded up on protein (soy milk, cashews, big spoonfuls of peanut butter) because my sore muscles needed it right after the race.  Friday night Steve and I went to a St. Pat's pub crawl in the Vista, and my reboot started Saturday morning.  The "Classic Reboot" that I'm doing consists of 5 days of juicing plus eating fresh fruits and vegetables, 5 days of juice only and 5 days of juice plus eating.  I'm making up my own meal plans as I go and consuming however much I want while staying within the parameters of the reboot.

Since I went vegan a couple of months ago, I don't feel like I'm suffering as much as if I ate a lot of meat (or a lot of processed junk), but here and there it's been hard to deal with the hunger pangs.  As a runner - and as one who recently trained for and ran a marathon - I'm not used to letting myself go hungry.  I eat healthy snacks, but as a rule, as soon as I notice that I'm hungry, I take care of it.  At work this past weekend (days 1 and 2), I found myself having to gulp down extra water between juices, fruit snacks and meals in order to trick myself into thinking I was full.  Today I was off from work, so it wasn't so hard to poke my head in the fridge and see what I could snack on (like carrots) and to move around at my own relaxed pace, which I don't always get to do at work.  I'm thankful that I'll be off at least two of the five days of the juice fast, because I have a feeling that it's going to be rough.

Anyway, the Vegetarian Times must have caught wind of the fact that I bought four kabocha squash (similar to acorn squash) at Rosewood Market this morning, because this recipe showed up in my Facebook feed after I got home.  As soon as I saw it, I knew what I'd be making for dinner.  I mostly followed the recipe  but substituted fresh ginger, Rasam powder (a type of curry powder available in Indian grocery stores) and cayenne for the sherry and left the skin on the squash because it's perfectly edible and a colossal pain in the ass to peel when it's raw.  I found that by bringing it to a boil and then reducing the heat, rather than just bringing it to a simmer, it cooked even faster and was ready to go in the blender even before I was done getting everything together for the salad. 

The salad was simple: a couple of handfuls of spinach (one for each of us), about two ears' worth of baked husk-on corn, cut from the cob after cooling, one big, ripe tomato and one avocado.  Just arranged everything on two plates and poured over a dressing made of one tablespoon of lime juice, two tablespoons of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.  Yumminess!  Plus I made a double batch of the soup, so there will be plenty more to enjoy during the next couple of days before the juice fast begins!

One nice thing about still being able to consume things like sweet potatoes and winter squash, the usual way or in juice form, is that they provide a little extra bulk and natural sugar, so you don't feel completely deprived.  I've felt pretty okay today, but my fingers are crossed that I'll make it through the juice fast without killing anyone...

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