Staying off wheat, diary, caffeine, and alcohol for 21 days is no easy task.... If you're thinking of starting a detox or want to build new nutritional habits, here are my 5 top tips for helping you win:
Be accountable: Sharing what I was doing with others, and writing in my food and activity planner kept me committed to my challenge.
But the fear of being spotted by another detoxer munching into something "off-plan" was the real motivator - breaking a promise you've made to someone else feels so much worse than one you've just made to yourself. So get sharing!
Preparation is essential: The days I struggled were when I hadn't packed my lunch or planned enough time in my day to find somewhere close by to work to grab something nutritious. Ditto re breakfast - however hard boiled eggs done the night before were brilliant for a grab and go breakfast to take to work, and a protein shake made with almond butter (excellent fat source) and organic protein powder kept me full. On unplanned days it was office cake or go hungry = #detoxfails
Cultivate micro-habits: The little things that we do everything become habits and eventually ways of being for our entire lives! I started taking the stairs instead of the lift (again fear of being spotted being a lazy bones helped...). Where could YOU improve your life by 5%?
Walking is wondrous! Squeeze it in where ever you can. I loved how one of the group started walking with her son in the evening - what a lovely way to connect and get moving.
I started walking to a tube stop 25 mins away rather than one 5 mins away after work. Pounding the pavement cleared my mind after a busy day. Plus no need to spend time packing and changing into gym gear; backpack on and straight out the door!
Sometimes you win. Sometimes you learn: We're all only human and some days detox perfection isn't possible - especially in social situs (for me a weekend on holiday in the land of carbs and prosecco aka Italy). Don't beat yourself up, remember all of the positives from that week, observe, make a change, and move forwards.
If anything in this post is helpful or resonates with you, I'd love to hear from you.