While my husband and I were on vacation our diet and exercise game started out strong. We did Body Beast before we hit the road, drank Shakeology, ate healthy snacks and a salad for dinner. He went for a daily bike ride and I worked out with my mom. We drank our Shakeology every day, so at least we got some super foods each day. Toward the end of our trip, things got a little off track as I suspected they would. Thankfully I had the foresight to order the 3 Day Refresh.
Needless to say we both felt like crap after days of eating like crap and not exercising. We got back on a Wednesday, I worked on Thursday then had Friday, Saturday and Sunday off and my husband was still on leave. That made it the ideal time to do the refresh.
What is the 3-day refresh? It’s basically a mini detox/cleanse. It’s a great way to give your system a refresh, especially if you’re trying to stop bad eating habits. It includes 4 daily shakes plus small servings of certain fruits, vegetables & healthy fat, with dinner being the largest meal. The plan comes with a guide that includes a list of foods that are allowed along with the portion sizes, and several recipes for the dinner option.
Each day follows the following formula:
• Drink 8 – 10 oz. of filtered water upon waking
• Within 1 hour of waking have your first shake + 1 fruit option
• Mid-morning tea (optional) unsweet or sweetened with Stevia – at least 1 hour after breakfast
• 2nd daily shake – at least 1 hour after tea
• Lunch – shake + 1 fruit option + 1 veggie option + 1 healthy fat option
• Mid-afternoon snack: 1 veggie option + 1 healthy fat option
• Dinner: 1 serving of dinner option recipes (recipes include 3 servings of veggies + 2 servings healthy fat) + optional 1 cup of vegetable broth
• Non-caffeinated herbal tea unsweet or sweetened with Stevia
• Lots of filtered water throughout the day – at least ½ your weight in ounces
What did we think of the experience? Overall, not bad for what it is. It is a cleanse/detox, not really a “diet”. It was a bit tough to function on such a small amount of calories, but my husband and I both really wanted to rid our systems of the junk we ate while on vacation so we stuck with it. Both my husband and I experienced bloating during the refresh, which is likely due to the gasses being emitted by the bacteria we were starving off us, lol. We both agree that we liked the flavors and textures of the shakes. I’ve read other reviews that say the shakes taste awful, but I honestly disagree. Vegan chocolate Shakeology is my favorite flavor, and it mixes really well whether it’s blended, mixed with almond milk or water. The fiber sweep shake is a citrus-flavored, high fiber shake. It tasted mostly like water with a hint of citrus flavor and you could tell that it had texture but it wasn’t super-gritty like some shakes are. The vanilla fresh shake was really good in my opinion. It was even better when I added some cinnamon and ginger. It makes me wonder why there isn’t a vegan vanilla Shakeology! We tried two of the nine dinner recipes that came with the plan booklet. The spinach salad was really good, as was the coconut steamed veggies. We did not try any of the juice option recipes, but I would like to try them soon because they sound good.
Day 1 was by far the toughest for me. The beginning of the day was fine. We had our shakes, fruit option, tea and fiber shake before leaving to run errands. When we got home I was famished, but we had our snack and I felt much better so I started cleaning the house. Then we had our “mid-afternoon” snack at dinner time and I cleaned some more. We ate dinner very late, and by that time I had no energy, developed a headache and a stomach ache. Unfortunately, this is how you know you’re detoxing! It was uncomfortable yes, but I had my eye on the prize so I dealt with it. However, both my husband and I had to add one extra serving of fruit and I also added one serving of fat. If I hadn’t I would not have been able to sleep due to the ravenous hunger I was feeling.
Day 2 was a bit better, probably because my husband and I both decided we were going to up our portions a bit. The portions are extremely small, so we doubled our lunch, snack and dinner portions. That didn’t add many calories, mind you, but it was just enough to be able to function. We even did 30 minutes of yoga that day. Other than that and doing some laundry, we were not very active. Neither of us had much energy.
Day 3 I woke up feeling, pardon the pun, “refreshed” and energized. I finished the laundry, did 20 minutes of yoga, did some business planning, cooked beans to get ready for the Adrenal Reset Diet I started Monday to keep my 3 Day Refresh results going, and catered to my husband, who awoke with a headache. He said his stomach was cramping too. Toward the end of the day, however, he was feeling much better.
I lost 2 lbs and 1 inch total (¼ inch from my natural waist, ¼ inch from my belly, ¼ inch from my hips and ¼ inch from my butt). As of this morning I have not gained any of it back. I don’t expect to since I’m now following the Adrenal Reset Diet (review to come) and exercising daily. My husband lost 4 lbs and ½ an inch off his waist (his other measurements stayed the same). As of this morning, he has lost 4 more pounds. It’s worth noting that he’s now back to cycling so that could be the reason he’s continued to lose weight, though it’s the same intensity level, distance, etc. that was not contributing to weight loss for him prior to completing the 3 Day Refresh. It’s highly possible that the cleanse gave his metabolism a boost, or it could be a coincidence. It’s hard to say so I’m going to refrain from making any claims one way or the other.
Recommendations: DO NOT do this if you are participating in a strenuous workout program! You will not have enough calories or energy! Do practice gentle exercises like Yoga or Pilates while on the 3 Day Refresh. If you are accustomed to eating healthy foods following this should be a bit easier for you than it would for someone who is just getting started with healthy foods. That’s not to say that it would be impossible for someone who normally eats unhealthy food, just more challenging. If you’re going to do it, I recommend getting rid of junk food from your house if you have it so you’re not tempted to cheat! If you must eat more than the plan allows, add one serving of allowed foods (preferably from the vegetable list), drink an 8 oz glass of water and give it yourself at least 30 minutes before you eat anything else. If you have to eat more than that, only eat foods that are allowed on the plan.
If you have a family, make sure you have their support, even if they’re not doing the 3 day refresh with you. The last thing you need is someone eating a scrumptious dessert or a bag of chips in front of you! Encourage them to try some of the foods that you’re eating. They might just like it! If it’s unrealistic to expect your family to completely avoid treats you can’t have on the plan, ask them to at least consume them in another room so you aren’t tempted to have something you shouldn’t. That would defeat the purpose!
Bottom Line: If you do this program make sure you are committed to sticking with it and you have the support of your family. It was tough to get through but because my husband and I were both committed, we supported each other and stuck with it. It wasn’t easy but it was definitely worth it. If you’re trying to break the cycle of bad eating habits, this is a great way to get there! If you’re interested in giving this program a try, I’d love to help support you in your efforts. If you have questions, please complete the contact form below. Thanks for taking the time to read this!