Food & Fitness

January’s Nutrition Challenge: Detox

Hello friends! I am home from NYC and back at last to the blogging world.

I fully intended to blog all last week, but Mr. Science and I arrived home from New York late on Sunday night (the 18th), and then I was awake at 7am to begin my first day at my new job (squee!). It was an eight-hour day, immediately followed by a holiday party for my new office. Then I worked all day on Tuesday, followed by a happy visit with Westwood, who is home for the holidays. Then on Wednesday I worked all day, immediately followed by another holiday party for the vet clinic office (which I technically don’t work for anymore, but still got invited to since the mother dear is the owner ;)). On Thursday I worked all day again but was so exhausted from our amazing trip and then my wonderful week back that I wasn’t up for much of anything except for sitting back and reading. And then, of course, it was time to prepare for the holidays!

Therefore, I didn’t get around to doing any of the blogging that I had planned. I missed all of you 🙂

But I’m back now! And I shall post a recap of our trip to NYC soon. First of all, though, I’d like to talk a little bit about the Ultimate Nutrition Challenge, since it begins on Sunday (where did December go?!).

The Ultimate Nutrition Challenge

As I posted before, the Ultimate Nutrition Challenge is a new challenge I’ve created which is going to last for a full 12 months. Each month we will do a different nutrition challenge to nourish the mind and the body. I’m also going to set a new goal each month.

In order to make room for social events and to avoid feelings of deprivation, and also especially to make sure that Mr. Science doesn’t feel as though he’s being roped into some nutrition challenge he has no desire to be a part of but can’t really escape since we’re living together, I’m also allowing a few “free” meals each month. Meals, not days. That way there can be 1 – 4 meals each month where challenge participants can eat anything they like with their family or at a social event. But it’s just one meal, not the whole day, and if no social events occur, you certainly don’t need to “use up” those “free” meals. Basically, this is just a way to provide some leeway if it’s really needed and the challenge is harder than you thought to stick with.

January: Detox

From January 1 – 31, the nutrition challenge will be Detox. It’s a rather loose term, which means that if you are going to take the challenge with me, you can really make it whatever you want it to be. For me, the detox is about consuming natural, low-calorie, whole foods, primarily things like homemade soup, oatmeal, raw/lightly cooked vegetables and fruit, fruit smoothies and green shakes. I’m going to try to steer clear of gluten and dairy, and go with a mostly-vegan type of diet.

The detox will also focus on vastly limiting added salts and instead choosing naturally-occurring forms of sodium, such as seaweeds (after all, we can easily get by on 500 mg of sodium per day… not the 2,400 – 3,000 mg that most people consumer each day!). Added sugar will also be reduced.

I’ll post my daily meals on my Health Writer Eats blog, but I’ll also be talking a bit about them throughout the month of January on this blog.

January’s Goals

I have three goals for January:

1) Lose 6 lbs. I’ve gained a fair amount of weight over the past year and a half, which is likely partly due to happy relationship weight and partly due to the hectic constantly-changing, slightly stressful workload that I took on. But I’m determined to lose all that weight with my Ultimate Nutrition Challenge! And we’ll start with 6 lbs in four weeks.

2) Engage in yoga and/or stretching at least three times each week. Yoga and stretching are good for the body, but also for the mind and the soul. When you’re doing a detox it’s important to focus on the whole body. Detoxing can also be stressful on the body (particularly if you over-indulged during the holiday season!), and therefore we need to help ourselves by relaxing the mind and soothing the soul. Yoga, stretching and meditation exercises are all ways to accomplish that.

3) Strength train two to three times each week. While it’s best not to overload your body by engaging in super strenuous workouts during a detox, it’s equally good to make sure your body does get in a good workout! Choose lighter weights to begin with for a detox month. Also, by all means attend aerobics classes or go for a long run if you have lots of energy, but remember that with a detox you might not feel as though you have piles of energy at first. In that case, stick with walking or gentle jogging, or go to your aerobics classes but be a little easier on yourself. This month is all about listening to your body and adapting accordingly.

Are you going to partake in January’s Detox Challenge? What goals have you made for yourself for January? Share your thoughts and comments below!


  1. Ethan Jones

    January is the best month to begin our health resolution after holiday to get back to our normal habits such as in eating and working out. Thank you for sharing your health goals, it inspire me to do the same resolution and get the goals.

  2. Westwood

    I hate the idea of detox in principle. Or I thought I did. Then I realized that it isn’t the principle I hate, it is the name which is misleading. Especially since I plan to return to grapefruits, spinach, and couscous…

    1. Sagan Morrow

      Ha, that’s a good point. A lot of people refrain from using the word “diet” too, even though it just means a way of eating. I think that’s the reason WHY I like to use those words… it removes the stigma!

      Grapefruit, spinach and couscous sounds so good right now.

  3. Pingback: February's Nutrition Challenge: Real Food | Living Healthy in the Real World

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