Whether you’re a bride or groom to be, or you’re visiting this blog because you saw our post on our social medias; hope this helps and guides you to the results you desire.
Though we have always been amazed by the before and after transformation photos we’ve seen, never did we imagine we would be making a post like this ourselves. We didn’t do this because we saw others doing it. Instead, we went down this path because we didn’t feel good about where our bodies were and where they were going; our health and energy were impacted. Our eating habits, by choice and by circumstance, were making things worse and setting an example for the girls that we weren’t proud of. Knowing our parents have diabetes and blood pressure problems, we wanted to be preventive.
Jas and I talked about making a change on and off for years. However, this time around we had a goal in mind, we wanted to look good for a wedding we’re attending in August. 🙂 I’m trying not to make this a sales pitch, so I’ll just get to how we got into the program and highlight what we did for our transformation, what results we’ve seen so far and what our goals are for the future.
How we started and our coach
It was almost serendipitous how we ran into our friends, Jacob McDougal and his wife Danelle after several years and we started talking about how they turned their lifestyle around. Actually, a few years back, Jacob tried to talk to us through Facebook and share his story with us, but we weren’t ready then (or I should say Jas wasn’t ready 😉 ). Once our calendars finally aligned, we were able to talk and learn more about the Advocare 24 Day Challenge.
We started the 24 Day Challenge on March 28, 2017 with Jacob and Danelle as our coaches. Jacob came over the night before we started and walked us through the challenge again and then went on to take our measurements (neck, shoulders, arms, chest, waist, hips, thighs and calves) and then weighed us on the scale he brought with him. He warned us, a lot of folks don’t see a difference on the scale but they notice a difference in inches. He also warned us, that the results will vary from his own, or from the posts we see online and even from each others.
The first phase of the challenge is a 10 day cleanse. Once we started, we already felt a difference in our energy within a few days. When we got on the scale on the 11th day, we noticed a difference in the numbers. We have heard some folks say the cleanse is all they do and they’ll do it every 90 days. However, for us we needed more and so we were going to complete the 24 days. The second phase of the 24 days is introducing nutrients to your body. What we’ve learned about the Advocare products in a nutshell is, it’s shaping and training the body to our new lifestyle. In simplest terms it involves, popping lots of vitamins and nutritional pills, supplements and shakes, a clean eating diet (vegan, veg or non-veg), drinking water and physically moving (also known as exercise).
You’re probably wondering, great how much is this going to cost? Will I be paying for this for the rest of my life if I want to stay fit? The answer is: it will cost as much as you want it to. You determine when you want to use the products and how much. If you want to stop after the 24 days, you can. Then all you need to do is maintain the amount of water you intake daily and maintain your healthy eating habits and you will maintain your fitness. We would strongly recommend you work with a coach (like Jacob and Danelle) because they will be able to help guide you through it, help you customize it and then help you maintain it. You do NOT pay for their time! The only cost is the products you purchase.
Jas started the program at 186 lbs and I was at 168 lbs, today (4/28/2017) the scale reads at 161 lbs for Jas and 152 lbs for me. I’m not ready to share my photo yet 🙂 I will when I get it where I want to be.
How we use to eat
We use to start all mornings with coffee with a ton of sugar and milk or creamer. There were several visits a week to Starbucks, I’m afraid to look back at our spending at Starbucks alone. In addition to coffee, we would have pastries, lemon cake or bagels for breakfast. Then lunch always varied from fast food to Indian cooking at home for Jas if he was home; we did transition to sandwiches only for lunch. And we thought that was a great step in the right direction. 🙂 Key thing I would like to point out is the gap between our meals, it would vary from 4 to 6 hours, sometimes longer. Coke and Pepsi were always a must at lunch, unless we had sandwiches but even with the sandwiches we would have the soft drinks when we felt like it. Then dinner would be frozen pizzas, frozen chicken strips, frozen pasta packets (you get the idea) and a lot of pizza deliveries, sometimes a couple of times a week. Several visits a week to Panda Express and Taco Bell and soda every night. We stay up late several nights a week, that meant we would partake in snacks before bedtime. The snack was always a pint of milk for Jas and 8 oz for me, with Chips Ahoy or Oreos.
That was when we were home. Wedding days, just forget about it. We weren’t eating meals at all most times; miss a breakfast or miss lunch or miss dinner or depending on the day our meals would just be the fried appetizers (samosas, pakoras, etc).
And finally our water intake varied from 16 oz to roughly 36 oz a day, and it was even worse on wedding days.
How we eat now and Advocare
If you decide to look into the 24 Day Challenge, you will see how we incorporate Advocare into our daily routine and what some of the products are. I’m not going to mention the products we’re on because it can be customized and it changes between the first 10 days and the last 14 days and to the 90 Day Challenge, which we’re on now. The following is what we did during the first 24 days, our eating is the same now, bar the Advocare products we take are different. Exercise is a key component that we’re lacking on, we get most our exercise by walking and running around during the photoshoots and wedding events.
In a nutshell we cut out: sugar, salt, dairy, processed meat and foods and bad carbs. No alcohol. No soda and juices. We drink more water; half our body weight in oz per day. Now that I think of it, we only have water all day as our liquid intake. How strict you are or aren’t will affect your results. We were super strict and I think that made a difference for us. We were horrible before we started, so that definitely made a difference for us. 🙂
The morning starts with Spark mixed in 8 oz of water soon after we wake up. We then continue getting ready and wait 30 minutes to have breakfast.
Our breakfast is low carb, whole grain toast, egg white, greek yogurt, fruit or a supplement protein shake. We do the shake most often because our mornings are always rushed, either because of a school day or a wedding day. We love our sleep, so getting up early isn’t the best option for us 🙂
We also had fiber on the cleanse along with our breakfast.
Then 2/3 hours later we have our morning snack; we’ll change it up and have either fruit, nuts, snack bars with low sodium and sugar, veggies like carrots, celery, or broccoli (no ranch for dipping, but instead hummus is great or peanut butter after the 10 days is okay) or a couple of boiled eggs. There are lots of other options, this is just what we do.
2/3 hours later is lunch. Lunch should be protein, complex carbs and vegetables. If you can meal prep beforehand for the week, you’ll be golden. With our schedules, we don’t have time to prep. Slow cooker would be a life saver, I need to work that into our schedule. Jacob and Danelle told us some ways to get around with eating out. This works for dinner too. These are our go-to options when we’re out.
The obvious and easiest is finding a salad and asking them for the right amount of protein. No creamy dressings.
Chipotle. We get their bowls or salads with brown rice, black beans, grilled veggies, chicken (double, especially if we know we won’t have protein at dinner) and their pico de gallo (the mild salsa). No corn for the cleanse phase and no cheese or sour cream during the challenge.
Carls Jr or In-and-Out low carb/lettuce wrapped burger. No cheese and no condiments or special sauce, mustard only if you must.
Side note: Since we’ve been on the challenge, we have had the lettuce wrapped burger a couple of times, when we didn’t have time for anything else and we have Chipotle, but we don’t feel so good after either. We feel heavy/bloated and stuffed. We’re better when we go salad route or when we have dinner that we’ve made at home. I know what all the ingredients are and we control the amount of salt and grease.
Keyword is “clean eating”
2/3 hours later is afternoon snack.
2/3 hours later is dinner. Dinner again should be protein, complex carbs (if you didn’t have at lunch) and veggies. For us, it has been home cooked, chicken or ground turkey with veggies and some form of complex carb (mostly potatoes because they’re the easiest). I use olive oil only. I’m not adding salt, if I must it’s sea salt and we use Mrs. Dash for seasoning.
If we’re up late, we’ll do a snack. Which is either veggies with hummus or fruit or a greek yogurt.
And we’ve been having water through out the day, easily hitting our target (half our body weight in oz per day).
How we plan to eat in the future
We completed the 24 Day Challenge on April 20, 2017 and transitioned into the 90 Day Challenge. We’re at day 32 as of today (4/28/2017). We aimed for a physical transformation, but we got more than that. We’re aiming now for better health and improved energy.
We plan to be strict during the remaining days till we finish the 90 Day Challenge. After we’re done with the challenge, we might do just the 10 day cleanse again, if we feel like we need that final push.
Our eating habits will stay the same with slight room for the not so good things. We discussed that we will have 2/3 cheat meals a week. By cheat meals we mean, pasta, pizza (papa murphy’s take and bake), tacos or a dessert after a good meal.
We will continue with our water in take and keep with the schedule of having our meals and snacks every 2/3 hours.
We need to be better about incorporating exercise.