Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Reason #46: Guest Post - Blueprint Cleanse Review

When the warm weather hits New York City, I can always count on my friend Chrissie to meet me for lunch in Bryant Park. We sit at a table (if we can find one!), eat lunch, and gab about life for a treasured 45 minutes. Every time I see Chrissie she tells me of her latest travel (she has gone to Scotland, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas, the Democratic National Convention, and Cayman Islands in just the past six or so months), however, last lunch she was telling me about the Blueprint cleanse she went on. Of course, I was excited to hear all the details, and I immediately asked her to write a review for the blog. Happy and cheerful, like always, she agreed.

So ladies and gentlemen, here is Chrissie's review of the Blueprint cleanse:

With summer quickly approaching, I’ve been trying to motivate myself to do my usual “get in shape in 2 months” routine. Ever since I gained that freshman 15 (which increased over the years), each summer I work my butt of at the gym, eat extremely healthy and lose the weight. It’s a vicious cycle – why can’t I just be healthy all year around and not have to suffer a strict routine of the gym 6 days a week and a diet mainly consisting of salads.

After another one of my Scotland trips last year where I inevitably gain 5-8 pounds, I decided I really needed something to make me feel better. I had read about the Blueprint Cleanse in New York Mag and after an unsuccessful attempt at Master Cleanse (lasted one day – who wants to drink lemon, maple syrup and cayenne pepper for 7-10 days on top of taking a laxative each day? No thanks), I decided I would give this Blueprint Cleanse a try. Day 1 was absolutely horrible. It wasn’t because I was hungry, but more because the “green drink” was unbearable. But by the second day, perhaps because my body realized this was the only nourishment it was going to get, I embraced the green drink and gulped it down. It actually tasted good to me! In the end, I had lost the 5 pounds I had gained in Scotland after three days of the cleanse. What’s more is that I stayed motivated to eat healthy after and lost another 15lbs over the next 2 months. In the end however, I decided that while the cleanse was good, I did not think it was worth 200 dollars and wouldn’t do it again.

Fast-forward to the present – I gained all of the weight back (surprise, surprise) but am determined to get it off by July. After receiving a 25% discount off the hefty price tag and with a trip to Grand Cayman a week away, I took the plunge, convinced two colleagues to join me and ordered the drinks.

The cleanse is meant to get rid of your “body of impurities, regain an alkaline balance and normalize digestion and metabolism”. I’m not exactly sure how having just juice for three days and ingesting about 1000 calories helps you normalize metabolism but that wasn’t one of my priorities anyway. To start the cleanse, you can pick from three different levels: Renovation, Foundation and Excavation. From what I can tell, each level differs in terms of calorie intake, nutrients and sugar. I chose to go with the Foundation (the same one I did one year earlier). Each day, you drink a total of 6 drinks. I like to space them out and drink them every two hours starting at 9am. In between, you should drink at least 8 ounces of water. Glad I sit next to the bathroom!

The drinks arrived on Sunday night with each day’s nourishment neatly organized in handy lime green soft cooler. Each drink was numbered in the order you should drink it. In the days leading up to the cleanse, they advise you to cut out things like dairy and meat and focus on veggies and fruits. On Saturday, I followed the rules but on Sunday couldn’t resist when my boyfriend was ordering from our local fav, Max. I had a gigantic chicken cutlet and several oatmeal cookies with milk. Oops.

Day 1 – I started the day with warm water as the cleanse advises to “get things moving”. I then went on to my first green drink (spinach, romaine, green apple, celery) of the day. It tasted fine to me which was a relief. My colleagues on the other hand were suffering. One was threatening to quit and the other was convinced she was getting skin eruptions (one of the uncommon side effects). She wasn’t, she was just paranoid and looking for excuses! The second drink, one of my favorites is made with pineapple and mint. Following that, the green drink, a lemon drink, the green drink and a finally, a welcome treat which I like to call “the milkshake” before going to bed. This time, the lack of caffeine was killing me. I thought I could work out but that was impossible. After work I went right home and went to bed. At 7pm.

Day 2 – I feel really good, no headaches from lack of caffeine, more energy. I had lost 2.5 pounds and was able to stay up past 10 pm.

Day 3 – Final day! I had lost 4 pounds and felt good. I did have semi-extreme hunger pangs when I wasn’t drinking the juice, which hadn’t happened up until now.

Day 4 – First day off the cleanse. Lost a total of 5.5 pounds. I started the day with my colleagues “milk shake” after she had given up. I wasn’t hungry at all. For lunch, I had a salad with chicken and for dinner soup with a piece of bread. I didn’t have one coffee all day! I thought that would be the first thing I ran back to but here I am 5 days later and not needing an ounce of coffee.

People ask me all the time if I recommend the Blueprint Cleanse and I will say that it depends on what you are looking for it to do. If you are looking for a motivation to jumpstart a healthy lifestyle then I say yes. The pounds that come off may just be water weight, but if you like how you feel afterwards and don’t crave all those bad things, then I say it is worth it.

However, I think the price is absolutely ridiculous and I know I could have lost this weight myself from drinking my own smoothies. Also, the two creators of this, what exactly do they know about nutrition? One is a PR girl (hence all the good press) and the second one obtained her Certified Nutritional Consultant degree in Puerto Rico (which is different from a Registered Dietician in the sense that CNCs take a holistic approach while RDs work closely with doctors and stick to western medicine guidelines). Sounds suspicious to me. I have similar cynical feelings towards the writers of Skinny Bitch.

But for me, motivation is everything. I obviously would not cheat on something I just dropped 200 dollars on!

That said, if you don’t feel like spending the money for three days of juice you can apparently buy similar drinks at whole foods or at your local juice store. It all depends on if you have the willpower to create your own structure.

Chrissie and are now in discussions to create our own juice creations, and I am sure you will see future recipes for smoothies to come. Thanks so much for the great review Chrissie!

FYI, until next Monday I will be away from the blogosphere. Tonight is dinner and drinks with my out-of-town friends at CRISPO, and then Thursday I am flying out to South Carolina for the annual girls' lakehouse weekend!

Will it live up to 2008?


  1. $200 bones? Gesh! That sounds ridiculous.

  2. SO SO interesting about the cleanse.
    Ive never tried one....preferred living vicariously :)

  3. I'm really intrigued... I kind of want to do this now.

  4. I'm actually on this now. It's my first day, but i'm having issues with the green juice. Problem is that I don't like celery and this juice REEKS of celery. I've tried sucking it down in big gulps with a straw, but think I'll be skipping one of the green juices. I'm on the excavation cleanse, which is the hardest level and is basically all green juice plus one lemonade and one "milkshake." I know i'm supposed to be on this for nutritional benefits, but really i just want to jumpstart a few pound weightloss in advance of my Aruba trip 3 weeks from now. ;)

  5. Alejandra - I totally agree - it's the celery (and apple) on top of the spinach taste for me that made me barely able to get through the first day but I think you will find that the second day is easier. I tried straw vs gulps and found that gulps worked better if you wanted to get it over with. Good luck!


  6. I just ordered this for a June 1 start! I got the package with Exhale for a 60 min massage and 3 Core Fusion classes -- seemed like a great deal. I just Level 3 as well. I hate celery. But I am trying to get more celery juices in these days to get used to it. Thanks for inspiring me!

  7. Dori - I can not wait to hear about your experience on it. I was reading Marie Claire, and I saw that massage/fusion class/cleanse being offered - here is the link for anyone interested in doing it in the NYC area http://www.marieclaire.com/health-fitness/news/articles/exhale-spa-blueprint-cleanse. Also fitnessnyc.wordpress.com gives a good review on her experience!

  8. I saw that article too! I'm doing a cleanse next week :)

  9. I would like to know where you got a 25% coupon. I would definitely try it for a discount!

  10. I, of course, a newcomer to this blog, but the author does not agree