I can now officially call myself a graduate of the 21 day Ultimate Reset program and I am SO stinkin' proud of that. The Ultimate Reset is a program I have often thought about tackling but never built up the nerve to actually do. So I decided that having a two year old and four month old at home was a recipe for success with the program?! Although the program may have been a bit simpler if I had done it before having two little ones in the house, I made it through all 21 days and feel great!
On Facebook I asked friends if they had any questions about the program or how it worked for me, so I am going to answer those here along with sharing my review.
But, first things first. What IS the Ultimate Reset?
To put it simply, it is a 21 day nutrition program. To put it not-so-simply, it is 21 days of meal planning, meal prepping, eliminating foods that often leave us feeling bloated or sick (often when we don't even realize the food is the cause of that feeling) and bringing your body back to its 'factory settings'. No junk food, no alcohol, limited animal products and a heavy focus on fresh fruits and vegetables - that is the Ultimate Reset. It also comes with several supplements that help you be even more efficient and achieve more during your Reset.
Was it hard?
I'd be lying if I said it was a walk in the park. There were days I struggled more than others, and there were some days that were surprisingly easy to get through. The second and third days were probably the most difficult. I was exhausted in these days and felt like I was walking around in a fog. Which, in some ways, I was. It was just a mental fog created by junk food and other crappy choices leaving my body as the Reset started to do its job.
At about the start of week two I had another hard day. The amount of cooking and prepping I was doing was starting to wear on me, and I thought about throwing in the towel. (Gotta be honest!) I wrote to a couple friends and told them how I was feeling, and they gave me wonderful words of encouragement to keep me going. Plus, when I looked at that Ultimate Reset package I couldn't imagine throwing away the first week's work because of a bump in the road. So I persisted and stuck to it, and the last week and a half wasn't difficult to get through. Surprisingly, being at a SuperBowl party wasn't even the hardest day. I just put my blinders on, avoided the food tables and ate my Reset-approved meals.
Did I do it while nursing? Can you?
No, I did not do it while nursing. After having my son life came at my family pretty fast when my husband was in an accident at work and lost his arm. My mother watched my kids during the day the week he was in the hospital so I could be there with him, and so I after his release home I continued to pump but did not go back to nursing. By the time I started the Ultimate Reset I had also stopped pumping and my son was being exclusively formula fed.
It is not recommended to do the Ultimate Reset while pregnant, nursing or pumping. Because the Reset is a cleanse, you would not want to risk any of the toxins your body is releasing to go to your child. Also, each of these things (pregnancy, nursing, pumping and Ultimate Resetting) are a lot of work for your body, so it is best to do the Reset by itself.
Did your husband Reset with you?
In a word, no. While Jake ate several of the meals with me and enjoyed them, he also opted to make his own meals a lot of the times.
Why did I choose to do the Ultimate Reset? What did I hope to get out of it?
Honestly, this could be a blog post all by itself - or even several. To keep it short and sweet, though, the main reason I did it was because I needed a big change. Through pregnancy, then having a newborn, then Jake's accident and all the stress that came with that, my discipline over food had become very lax. I was making unhealthy choices far too often. Even when I would do normal meal planning, I would leave wiggle room for cheating, and the cheating would snowball into too many bad choices.
Before having my daughter I had lost 65 pounds, and I have that amount as my current goal as well. As I thought about what I had done differently that time, I thought about how I had started. Before knowing anything about Beachbody, I watched the documentary Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, and that changed everything. I did a 7 day juice fast and then jumped into doing Insanity as a workout program. Taking that GIANT leap into health and then easing back into having wiggle room in my meals and choices gave me the mental 'reset' that I needed in order to make better and healthier decisions. I thought that the Ultimate Reset could also do this for me. Time will have to be the judge of whether my logic was correct or not, but so far I believe it was.
I wanted to get a lot out of the effort I put into the Ultimate Reset:
- I wanted to kick my sugary/sweets cravings
- I wanted to re-learn how to just.say.no to food when it's not going to fuel my body as I need
- I wanted to get into the habit of having more vegetables
- I wanted to set myself up for success
- I was hoping to lose some weight and kick start my weight loss journey
- I wanted to get used to drinking more water
I truly believe I accomplished all of these things!
What were my biggest non-scale victories?
The scale can be a fickle friend. It truly can't be a great indicator of how our health is changing, but that is how so many of us rate our success. I had plenty of non-scale victories that I think are even more worthwhile than any change I saw on the scale.
- The bloating in my fingers FINALLY went down enough so I can once again wear my wedding ring. It had been probably nine months since I was able to wear it because of pregnancy bloating and weight gain, but since a week or so into the Reset I have had it on 24/7. This was probably my favorite victory!
- I am now cognizant of just how badly I was doing at getting in all my vegetable servings each day. In the Ultimate Reset you eat vegetables, vegetables and more vegetables - and stay full, too! Doing the Reset has completely changed how I approach my meal planning. Vegetables are first priority, then fruits, then adding in some beans, grains, eggs, dairy and saving meat for up to just 3 times a week. Before the Reset I would pick a meat dish, add in dairy and grains and then throw in some veggies if I thought of it. No wonder the weight was staying on and I wasn't seeing results! Our bodies need vegetables, and I plan to deliver!
- I stayed away from chocolate. I'm not even sure this needs an explanation. No chocolate for three weeks? This was a huge accomplishment for me!
- WATER. I used to struggle to get in 100+ ounces of water a day, but during the Reset it became pretty simple to do, just because of how meals are scheduled. I have continued to get in this much water each day, and it truly does help curb hunger and cravings.
- I learned how to say no. How to walk away. How to make better choices and how to be content with healthy food. That's huge!
- I do believe I have set myself up for success, but I suppose the next couple weeks and months will be the real test of this :)
But really, how about that scale?
Along with non-scale victories, I saw a pretty big scale victory as well!
Throughout the 21 days of the Ultimate Reset I lost 17.8 pounds and 5.25 inches. Before starting the Reset I set a goal to lose between 10 and 15 pounds, with a stretch goal of 20. If I had hit 20 pounds I would have added in a snack or two, simply because I didn't want to shock my body too much by losing so much weight so quickly. I didn't end up hitting 20 pounds, but I am extremely pleased with what I did lose!
I can see that my stomach shrunk in a bit, some of my back fat disappeared and I had a couple people comment that my face looks thinner - all in all, I'm happy!
So where do I go from here? Jump back into my old habits and gain it all back? No! That is absolutely something I am not planing on doing. I will be starting with a round of country heat and then transitioning into Core de Force workouts while also staying on top of my nutrition. I may do one or two rounds of each program; I will see how I feel when I have completed the first round. Yesterday I submitted my results to Beachbody so I can get my free Ultimate Reset shirt - whoo hoo!
Nutrition-wise, I am having Shakeology for breakfast (vegan tropical strawberry, water and frozen fruit), vegan lunches and healthy dinners. Up to three times a week I will incorporate meat into our dinners, and allowing one 'indulgent' meal a week. These will almost certainly be dinners, so Jake can enjoy them as well.
I'm curious about trying this...
If you have read this novel and would like to learn more about the Ultimate Reset and trying it out for yourself, I would love to chat with you! I have many more thoughts and experiences than I could ever hope to fit into a blog post and would love to have you pick my brain about it. If you decide to jump in, I'd love to work with you one-on-one as you navigate the booklet, your meal prepping and going through the program itself. Support and someone to lean on is so vitally important for success!!
If you're not quite sure you're up to the task of doing the Ultimate Reset but would like to get a better handle on your own health and fitness, I have a challenge group starting on March 13 and would love to have you in it!
For either thing, or if you have any questions at all, please feel free to comment on this post with your email address, email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form below and I will get back to you within the next 24 hours!
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