So in a desperate plight to kick my bad eating habits (that have gone into overdrive since being back in Canada), shed the Christmas weight that refuses to leave (despite working out ALL the time), and clear up my skin, I thought I’d take on the wild rose cleanse.

I’ve done it once before but that was a LONG time ago and I’m not even sure I managed the whole 12 days.

If you’re new to this cleanse, here’s the basic scoop: 12 days of herbs and a tincture meant to “clean out toxins” – not something I particularly subscribe to but the aforementioned list of things I want to achieve are also apparently achievable and so, here we are.

What you can’t eat

On this cleanse you do not eat any yeast, gluten, fermented foods, red meat, dairy, alcohol (with distilled liquor in a very small amount being the exception), or sugar. Nothing processed. Minimal fruit.

I know. It’s a hellscape. But I was determined.Β I figured some of you might be curious what this looks like over nearly two weeks, and since I love to overshare, here we are!

I forgot to take before photos but honestly who cares. I’ll tell you how I feel and how much weight I lose at the end and that should suffice for us all. Right?

Here we go…!

Day 1

I got this. A disgusting tincture and 6 giant horse pills down the hatch. No biggie. A bit hangry but not doing too bad. Missing condiments more than sugar. Is Safeway sushi allowed? F-it. I’m eating it regardless.

Worked out in the am before starting the cleanse, then did a power walk at lunch. Was feeling pretty beat by bedtime but I did have to work a few extra hours so that could account for it.

Day 2

Healthy food is kind of bland? I need to up my cooking game. And preparedness. I miss sugar. Less tired today than yesterday, though, so that’s good. But damn. Almonds without salt or honey or roasting are booorrrriinnnngggg you guys.

Felt guilty for sleeping in TWO HOURS beyond normal.Β Took the pug for a big walk but can’t find the energy to actually work out. Cleaned the house – does that count? And made a huge batch of cleanse-friendly pea soup so at least my lunch prospect tomorrow is looking good.

Day 3

Sluggish. Hazy. Tired. It is St. Paddy’s though and I plan to drink some vodka (allowed, in moderation) so hopefully that will perk me up! And not make me sick.. :-/

Guys, in possibly the most impressive accomplishment of my life, I managed to drink all night and NOT EAT EVEN ONE bad thing. Nothing! I didn’t steal a french fry or dig into the amazing nachos set before me. In full confession, I definitely drank more than the two ounces of the distilled beverages the cleanse condones – but I drank them all without any sugar additives so frankly, I’m pretty proud of myself.

Day 4

Hangover trumps any bodily feelings induced by the cleanse. I feel mostly fine while also less than great.

Day 5

My appetite has really started to wane and probably in no small part because I’m not pumped about any of the food I’m eating. It’s all fine – good even – but it’s not exciting. It’s not sexy. It’s no pizza, you guys. I had to force myself to have breakfast just so I could take the herbal pills.

Day 6

I want to cheat today like no other day. I crave pizza and chocolate and lattes and…fruit! Ahhhhhh. I actually had a double portion of fruit yesterday because the cravings were coming on strong (you’re only “allowed” one serving of fruit a day on the cleanse). I figure if a few dark cherries are my biggest cheat of this whole experiment I’m not doing so bad, right?

Did have a weird tummy bout tonight though…not sure what that was about, but it was unpleasant. Really feeling like those herbs are, um, clearing out the ol’ system…

Day 7

I triedΒ on some jeans that I haven’t been able to wear in a few months and…they fit! And not squished and squeezed fit – normal fit. I haven’t stepped on a scale since Day 1, but if I’m essentially down a pants size in a week then colour me happy! I feel boosted to carry on and finish out the cleanse.

My energy is starting to come back to me…I did a power walk at lunch and went for a short run after work. I missed my runs!

Update: The scale says I’m down 7 pounds!

Day 8

So the last couple of evenings I’ve had some cramps. It’s nothing compared with being a woman once a month, just for perspective, but it is kind of unpleasant when coupled with a little extra time in the washroom. I suppose this is the stage of the cleanse where those intestines are really getting scraped clean, huh?

TMI?

On the upside? Feeling less tired today and actually got up with my alarm at 6am for the first time since starting this cleanse. A little yoga and meditation got me feelin’ good for today!

Day 9

My appetite has really dropped off, like, noticeably. But the thing is, I don’t feel tired or deprived. I feel good, actually. I think this goes to show that we actually need to consume a lot less than we think we do – especially if we’re consuming the right things.

Today my diet consisted of a green and berry smoothie for breakfast, homemade hummus and veggies for lunch, and a power bar thingie for dinner*. That’s it. Well, plus coffee. But no snacks. And I felt good. Not full, but not hangry either. And just two weeks ago that would have been maybe half of what I was eating in a day – the snacking portion lol.

*This is a cheat and not allowed on the cleanse. I was scrambling to get to a work event that was slated to last all night and couldn’t fathom speaking to a bunch of people while my tummy grumbled into the microphone.

Day 10

Back on track today, though after last night’s cheat I woke up with a gurgly, hungry tummy for the first time in a week. Interesting…

Day 11

Another cheat. It’s so much harder when you know the end is nigh! The cheat was a small piece of Grandma’s berry pie after a day of running errands (and missing lunch) and I have to say: I don’t regret it.

Also, I noticed right away that I seem a touch more bloated than I have lately. Could be something else, but I’m inclined to think it’s the sugar…

Day 12

Final day! Woke up feeling hungry but went for a 4.5km run – my best outdoor run in over a year! Made myself up a giant batch of roasted potatoes and egg white omelette for breakfast. Delish.

Maybe because of the sugar last night, but I did feel snackier today. Oh well. Lunch was a snack of chickpeas and dinner was basically breakfast all over again but with a few pieces of tofu as well.

Tomorrow morning is D-Day. I weigh in and we shall see how this whole thing went down!

final results

I lost 10 pounds! I feel really pleased with that. I didn’t see any drastic improvement in my skin, but nor did it worsen in any respect.

Also importantly, I feel healthier and lighter on my feet (yes, I did just say that), and like my portions are back under control. This has been good!

recommended?

Honestly, this won’t be for everyone. Because I already eat vegetarian (bordering on vegan), I didn’t find all of the changes super hard to stick to most days. Others might find it trickier.

That said, I think the results and a general “refresh” on eating habits is a good idea for anyone! Just make sure to plan out some meals and cook in advance – you’re sure to go off the rails if you’re unprepared.

Let me know if you try it so we can compare notes! Happy spring…cleaning…😏

Talk to me, yo!