The Advocare 24 day challenge I participated in with an awesome group of people is now over. It ended Wednesday, October 30th. Just in time to derail all progress with candy from my kid's trick or treat basket….. Just kidding. I did have a few pieces, but nothing too major. Anyway, I really enjoyed the challenge. I also signed up as a distributor so that I could get a discount on the products, (best way to do it) so any link I post will be directly to my page.
Here are my thoughts after the challenge (I wrote this in an email to my Advocare advisor who hosted the Holiday Hustle 24 Day Challenge, and it was LONG- so I am just copying the exact text here):
I can tell you I lost 10 pounds during the challenge. I can also tell you that my jeans are too big (as are my bras, but I'm not as excited about that one!). I am very happy about the weight loss and the clothing changes, but the main changes have been internal for me- and these are the ones I'm most happy about.
First of all, sleep. I have struggled with sleep issues for as long as I can remember. I was not able to fall asleep. It took hours, literally (and I mean the real definition of literally, not the trendy way people use it now!!!) for my brain to wind down so I could fall asleep. I have tried/taken everything short of prescription sleeping pills (because I was afraid of becoming dependent/all the crazy stories I've heard about what people do in their sleep while taking those). I have eaten "clean" before, I've been paleo/primal, etc. so the dietary changes weren't necessarily new to me. That has helped other things in the past, but never changed the sleep issues. I make it a point to not drink anything caffeinated past noon, and have for a very long time. Longer story shorter- while on this 24 day challenge, and adding in Sleep Works/Nighttime Recovery, I can now fall asleep within 30-45 minutes of taking it. This is unheard of for me. I also wake up without the "hangover" or fog that I had when I'd take other things (Tylenol PM or even Benadryl when I was desperate for sleep). Which is so amazing. Because the side effect of taking hours to fall asleep means you are still exhausted when you wake up after a few hours of sleep. And that lack of energy/fatigue carries into the day.
Which brings me to the next benefit. Energy. I actually have it. And not the crazy, jittery energy that makes your heart race and you can't focus that I've experienced from other supplements/energy drinks. I have tried a weight loss formula (supposedly all natural) before where 6 hours after I took it, my heart rate was 103, and I was just sitting still. However, this is controlled, focused energy that allows you to think clearly and get stuff done! This is something I have not experienced in quite some time. I have existed in a fatigued state for probably the past decade (actually, probably longer). I have needed this energy back for so many reasons. My husband owns his own business and travels extensively. That means I'm home raising our daughter. And for much of her life, I've not had the energy to be the parent she needs me to be. Which has made me feel like a huge hypocrite, since I work with children and their families and counsel parents to be involved! Don't get me wrong, she has never once been neglected and she has what she needs, plus gets to participate in many activities and I'm always there for those. But I truly just wanted to "check out" mentally and was so exhausted I just wanted to go home. And at home I would just want to lounge around and watch TV or read, which is fine to a point. But it consumed me, because I was exhausted the majority of the time.
Another good thing? Focus and mental clarity. I have ADHD (actual diagnosis), but only the inattentive type, not the hyperactivity. I've tried prescription medications, supplements, naturopathic, homeopathic, chiropractic, etc. treatments, and nothing made it better. I'm not saying I'm 100% "cured" from this, I still have my moments. But I have noticed a difference in my ability to focus and my mental clarity. Which is a bonus when you have to listen to people for a living!
Health-wise I have noticed a drastic change in my digestive system. I am more regular, I don't have the after I eat stomach distress/discomfort (unless I eat JUNK). My husband made the comment about me actually getting through a meal and not saying almost immediately afterward, "my stomach hurts." It's nice to not have to include Maalox as one of my main food groups anymore. That was something I relied on, even if it was what one would consider a "good" or "clean" meal.
Anyway, I will wrap it up. I know this is long, but I am really happy with my results. I wish I would have worked out harder during the challenge, but I had been training for the trail race that fell in the middle of the challenge, and have been trying to avoid re-injury so I could continue my running, and I made that a priority over other exercise. I don't have regrets about that necessarily, because I feel I made the right choice for me during that time. I am definitely continuing on with the products, and am planning on introducing a few new ones into the mix.So, there's that.