Well, he made it! Zak has completed his personal juice fast challenge of consuming nothing but fresh fruit and vegetable juice for 40 days straight. The produce drawer in the fridge is less packed, his pants are looser and I made coffee for both of us this morning.
Here he is at the start of his fast, 40 long days ago. April 22, weighing in at 195 lbs.
And today, June 1 – 41 days later and 32 pounds lighter.
You can find more photos of his progression in the 4 weeks update, and some frequently asked questions in the 2 week update as well.
Here’s the updated version of his weight loss trend graph, he lost 16.6 % of his body weight according to our home scale.
He won his office Biggest Loser competition too – according to the scale at work he lost 15.48% of his body weight. (The second and third place winners lost 4.42% and 3.6%.) It was a $25 entry fee to be a part of the contest. Winner takes the pot. With 13 participants, he’s now $325 richer
After we took his “Before” picture on Day 1, he took a couple pictures of his belt buckle too.
Almost at the very end of its rope there… he pointed out that the end of the belt couldn’t even reach the belt loop.
(It also took me a second to realize that his hand is in the picture because he’s holding his belly out of the way.)
He took an “after” picture of his belt today, with the belt hole punch because he needed to add a new hole!
(The same belt hole punch that was used to add holes to the other end of the belt.)
Moving forward, his plan for the next 40 days is to ease back into eating regular food by juicing for breakfast, having a salad for lunch and something with protein for dinner. No gluten, no dairy, no sugar. After juice and (black) coffee this morning, his first solid meal was a simple salad made arugula straight from the garden and carrots tossed in a dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salad booster.
Good news, he remembered how to chew!
As for physical activity, now that he’s eating more calories, fat and protein, he plans to continue walking, to start doing yoga once a week as well as one short, high intensity workout per week. He hopes to continue to lose some fat while building muscle and improving his fitness. He says he feels like he could still use to lose another 10 lbs of fat, but doesn’t want to be overly concerned with what the scale says and is in no rush for his body fat percentage to drop further.
A few noteworthy items for anyone who might embark on a similar fast some day:
About two weeks into the fast he got a canker sore that was painful and slow to heal. We initially guessed it was from drinking so much citrus, so he cut back on the lemons, limes and oranges in his juice. I later found some anecdotal evidence in a blog post and more information in a juice fasting article that said his canker sore was an expected detox symptom. It did eventually heal and did not return, and just like that blog post mentions, frequent tooth brushing did help with pain relief. He said he noticed the feeling of a “coated tongue” that both of those sites mention, and that his tongue did feel different the entire time.
If you don’t want to read about bowel movements, start scrolling down now! At first he was having bowel movements every other day (still solid) but they did decrease in frequency over the course of the juice fast. It wasn’t that he was uncomfortably constipated, but there has just been very solid matter to… uhhh, you know – poop out.
A few other points, straight from Zak who says we should start a Juice Club.
The Rules of Juice Club
Rule 1 – Tell people about Juice Club. If you are going to set a juice fast goal for yourself, make it public. This goes for any goal. If you tell people about it, it helps hold you accountable and makes it easier to muster up the willpower to follow through with it.
(I’ve written about it here obviously, but he also announced it on his personal Facebook page.)
Rule 2 – Wash your juicer immediately. The juicer is a pain to wash but is much easier to clean before the juice and fiber has time to dry. Make washing the juicer your last step of making juice. Don’t even drink your juice until the juicer is washed.
Rule 3 – Only one beet per glass. Too many beets can have a laxative effect. Some people use this as a detox method, but if you are planning on going out or any place where you don’t have easy, fast access to the bathroom, I recommend 1 beet at a time. 1 beet with beet greens is fine.
(Should we ask him how he knows this?)
Rule 4 – Be mindful while juicing. It’s important to pay attention to your energy levels, what your body needs and how hydrated you feel. There is no such thing as being too mindful. Check in with yourself and how you’re feeling as frequently as you can.
And with that, Zak’s juice fast has come to an end. (Thank God, I’m ready for him to start eating again! I’ve missed sharing meals and being able to go out to eat together!)
Do you have any questions or remarks for him? Fire away in the comments, or feel free to send an email as well. He’ll gladly share about his experience and respond to you on or off the blog.