Diet & Nutrition

Time to cleanse


After being pregnant for almost 40 weeks and then nursing for almost 15 months, my body has been through the wringer for almost two full years and is still a little out of whack.  I’ve been exercising, eating “mostly” clean, drinking lots of water and attempting to get enough sleep.  But those pre-baby summer-white skinny crops are still snug.  Okay, they barely go up over my hips.  And although this blog isn’t about weight loss and being “skinny,” it is about being healthy, whole and happy.  And I’ll be a whole lot happier if I can get back into those skinny crops at some point. 🙂

I remained “sugar free” for 21 days when prepping for my wedding day back in 2011 and did a TLS 21-Day Challenge (cleanse) shortly after my first son stopped nursing in 2014, but this will be my first time trying Advocare.  It is pretty popular in the fitness arena here in Columbus so I figured, why not?  I’m always up for trying something new!

For this cleanse, I have to do the following for the next 10 days:

  • Start each morning with the probiotic supplement, 30 minutes before breakfast, and a large glass of water
  • Before one meal daily, drink the fiber supplement mixed with 4 ounces of fluids, followed by an additional 8-16 ounces of water.  The packet states drinking it with 8 oz, but some veterans suggested mixing it with 4 to get it down faster!
  • Take the Omegaplex (Omega-3 fatty acid supplement) twice daily
  • At bedtime, take the herbal cleanse caplets with a full glass of water
  • Remain coffee free (yikes!) but can replace my love-of-caffeine with Advocare’s Spark Energy vitamin & amino acid supplement


As far as eating, just eat clean!  The thing I didn’t like about the TLS challenge was you couldn’t eat ANYTHING other than fruits and vegetables the first seven days.  I’m not a rabbit and I’m pretty active… I need protein!  The Advocare challenge allows you to have clean proteins and low GI complex carbs (in small portions and preferably early in the day) including sweet potatoes, brown rice and oatmeal.  In addition to eating clean, there are some “don’t consume these” rules…

  • No coffee (or if absolutely needed, at least drink it black)
  • No alcohol
  • No processed foods (whole/real foods only)
  • No added sugars, salts, condiments, marinades, etc

So what will I miss?  Coffee, wine, Quest bars – in that order.  Waking up to a warm cup o’ Joe is the reason I get out of bed at 5:55AM.  So that will definitely be the hardest.  I’ll also miss dairy (yogurt and cheese) & chocolate, but I already try to limit those, so 10 days should be doable. If we weren’t going on vacation in early June, I may have tried the 24 day challenge, but I wanted to be done before we started our travels to Florida.  I mean, what’s vacation without a non-fat, no-whip, half caff, two-pump caramel latte?

I stocked up on fresh produce & clean snacks (nuts, hummus) and plan to boil a bunch of eggs.  I read this post “Tips for a successful 10 day Advocare Cleanse” and mentally prepared myself.

My mother-in-law is starting tomorrow, so at least I’ll have a partner in crime.  I plan to also replace one meal a day with my go-to green smoothie recipe and drink at least 75 ounces of water per day.  Wish me luck!

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Have you cleansed before?  Tried Advocare or a similar product?  Send us your tips & suggestions! 

Week SEVEN of our Living Fit Winter Challenge

We are mid-week SEVEN of our winter challenge!  Only about ten+ days to go!

Don’t forget to log your calendar points.  Here are some weekly reminders…

  • Double Calendar Points = No sweets and/or no alcohol. In week three, you had to choose between the two, but this week you can earn double in BOTH! Remember, you do get a cheat day (so don’t count points on day seven), but you can earn 120 points in this category alone!
  • Bonus Challenges [Double week!  100 points MAX]
    • Attend a FIT event [25 points]
      • Thurs FIT Book Club
      • The Local Spot Yoga event on Saturday with lululemon polaris @ Zest
      • Bend Active events Saturday with Rachel Kerr [Power Vinyasa] or Rachel Wilson [barre-OM]
    • Log more miles or mat minutes than last week [25 points]
    • EAT CLEAN challenge – see “RULES” below
      • Follow Rules six days [100 points] or
      • Follow Rules five days [75 points] or
      • Follow Rules four days [50 points]

In addition to our double calendar points for no sweets, we wanted to take on the challenge of making better ‘diet’ choices.  We created a MODIFIED CLEAN challenge because most of us work 40-50+ hours a week, have children, are BUSY… food prep and eating 100% clean is sometimes not an option!  We are just looking to make good choices, we are not detoxing or cleansing or trying out for bikini contests.  🙂  It should be a bit challenging, but doable!

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“Modified” Living Fit Eat Clean Challenge  RULES


  • No sugary/fake overly-processed/packaged foods (sugar-laden granola bars & oats, fruit snacks, desserts, GMOs, etc ~ put down that chocolate!)
  • CAN have ‘clean’ packaged foods, just try to limit.  Think no GMOs, low sugar (10g or less), low sodium, etc ~ protein shakes, almond milk, Fage greek yogurt, even milk is on this list (although if you’re looking for quick results, eliminating dairy will help!)
  • Try to fill up on veggies!  Eat 2-3+ servings veggies per day. More if you can.  Like until you think you can’t eat one more veggie.  The benefits of vegetables are countless ~ antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, water content, fiber, cancer prevention… read more HERE.
  • Eat lean protein; healthy meats, tofu, beans ~ and clean supplements; protein shakes, almond milk, PB2, coconut milk… read more HERE.
  • Eat 2 (no more than 3) servings fruit per day.  If you prefer to have 3 bananas and 2 apples for breakfast [Lan], thats ok, as long as you burn it off.  Training for a marathon?  Then eat away. 🙂
  • Try to avoid foods with added sugar and high sugar ratios. If it has more than 10g per serving, try something else!  Even some packaged fruits (raisins, craisins, etc) have a lot of sugar.

Like to cook?  Check out ~ a great website for clean recipes. Whitney Carlson had an amazing transformation from changing her diet over time!

Eat Clean Transformation-Weight Loss-Clean Eating-He and She Eat Clean-Fitness-Exercise

So that’s it!

Good luck with week 7 and your clean eating!

Over here, we’re already on day 3!!

Bend Active-15Check those labels for GMOs and sugar!!

Healthy snack or sweet/sugary treat?


First, let me say I am NOT a dietician, nutritionist or any other type of fitness expert.  I’m a runner who 1243210.largeloves chocolate.  So please, take what I’m saying with a grain of salt.  Or sugar.  I have, however, tried a TON of clean eating challenges, TLS & Advocare supplements, been on a ‘crash wedding diet’ and lots of other weight loss & fitness journeys over the last twenty-some years.

We all question ‘how much sugar is ok?’ especially if starting a New Year’s resolution or a Living Fit challenge.  If your body doesn’t burn off the sugar, its stored as fat (or something complex like that!)  On our current challenge, you can earn 5 points daily for ‘refraining from sweets, sugary treats, desserts & alcohol’ ~ so this poses the question of ‘what is considered a treat?’  What if you’re injured and your husband/doctor prescribes self-medication of a tall glass of wine?  What if you bought a ‘healthy’ energy bar, only to find out it has 20 grams of sugar?

We polled some of our Living Fit members & did a bit of research on the ol’ sugar topic. Here are some tips & guidelines we came up with…

  • Experts recommend a daily sugar intake [maximum] of around 20-25g for women and 36-37.5g for men.
  • Natural sugars are best ~ try to avoid all added sugar, refined carbs, processed foods and ‘artificial’ sweetners. Whenever possible, stick to single ingredient, whole foods.
  • Sugar can produce similar brain activity to some drugs… what?!   And you CAN get addicted to it!
  • “Acceptable sweets” that we came up with collectively include; apple w/ nut butter, fresh fruit, Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 10.42.53 PMyogurt, avocado w/ sprinkled nuts & drizzle of honey, hot tea [try putting blueberries in your green tea], dried fruit & nuts, granola or snack bar (Quest and Lara have low sugar), Carob Spirulina energy squares, KIND bars.  Certain fruits have a lot more sugar, so keep this in mind if trying to be extremely strict with your sugar intake.  Those Craisins are still better than a cookie, but have 24g of sugar!!
  • Find small ways to cut sugar in everyday choices.  Ask for just TWO instead of four pumps of syrup in that grande latte.  Try your coffee black.  Eat a fresh apple instead of a bag of cookies (okay, that’s a tough one).  Do what you can to make better choices.

With all of this info, we also believe in the theory of ‘everything in moderation.’  Our winter challenge does allow one day of sweets with no penalty.  So don’t forget to let yourself enjoy life every now and then, you only get one of them!

Note:  If you have information or tips on diet, nutrition, runner-friendly healthy recipes, etc ~ send them our way!  We are pretty good about getting fitness & exercise related posts up, but need to work on our ‘diet’ posts ~ a lot of us RUN because we like to eat, drink & be merry!

Sources and articles for more info: