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raquelpicToday we conclude Laura Wallace’s story in this column we’ve called, Fitspiration.

It’s about people who have taken the step towards a healthier choice or are on their way there.

Laura Wallace’s first step on this journey started on Sunday, April 7. She told LOVING ME it was something she wanted to do for a while as she was reaching a certain age and didn’t like how certain part of her body looked so she opted to go on a 7-day cleanse.

Find out what her decision was at the end of Day 7.

Day 5: The goodness

April 11

I’m always hearing about this goodness and I wonder really is there anything to it. I’m having a love affair with black olives. I never thought that something I despised before could taste so good. My body before was not giving it a change. Now it’s saying, “Hold up, am I missing something?” My guru speaks about the goodness and how the cleanse is a conduit for it to be experienced in your life. Here’s what my take on the goodness is since I started the cleanse 5 days ago.

To me, the goodness means going to the market and picking the ripest fruit imaginable. Getting your senses of touch and smell and sight involved when you choose your food and transplanting that in the other activities and interactions in your life. The goodness is deciding what you eat and considering carefully if what you put in your body is good for your body and by extension your mind and soul. The goodness is also savouring each texture and each aroma of everything you eat and as my favourite up and coming Bajan artiste, Adaeze (pronounced a daisy) says, your mind dances real slow…

*I’m having lunch at three in the afternoon. I just woke up from a deep and wonderful sleep induced by my diet and exercise regime. This afternoon at the gym is the boot camp edition and I am ready like Bunji. I will visualise my body and my work out to a higher level, contracting my abdominal muscles all the time to maximise the effects. For lunch, I’m having the rest of my shake that I made for breakfast, a salad of cucumbers, lettuce, sweet peppers, olives and raisins with my balsamic vinegar on top. For breakfast I had a shake which is made of flax, sunflower, sesame and pumpkin seeds with banana and almond milk. It is so filling. I also went to my vendor today and bought some tamarinds, gooseberries and plantain chips. I intend to put these chips with some tomato salsa as a snack later on. I’ve been asking myself if I should make this lifestyle change. I’m still divided. I have to meditate and listen to the musings of good friends tonight. I’m going to the Good Life first for their open mic and then to the Marina bar.

Day 6: Changing your body, loving yourself

April 12

Usually when some of my friends set out to lose a few pounds they use negative references to their body. This mechanism of hating something in order to lose it continues to be the means of coping with a weight loss situation. But when do you start to love your body and love your self again. Today I wanted to cover this full length mirror in my bedroom, because it is a visual reminder of what I consider to be my imperfections and I wonder: Why can’t I have a flat stomach? Why can’t my breasts be as high as they were before I had my child? Why? Why? Why?

Through these frustrating ordeals which occur in my thought processes, I have found a solution. Yes I hear negative references to my body parts from myself, family and friends … but I have to work past the initial sting. The sting which is similar to alcohol on a wound, but at the end it cleanses you. It makes you re-focus you perspective on life. My husband said, “The only problem area on you is your stomach, everything else is perfect. You should target your stomach in your diet and exercise routine.” I held on to the first part of his statement and felt the sting. But then I realised that he was trying to help in his further statement. Everything else is perfect. Target that area moreso in your routine. I’ve kept that in my psyche throughout this cleanse. To be able to have someone that is so frank with you in life, is a treasure.

*I know that I’m late from my blog but I just returned from my fruit picnic at the beach. We put mangoes, apples, strawberries and grapes with a 1.5 litre water bottle. My son looked so awesome eating his second mango on the beach. In fact the visitor on the adjoining blanket was disappointed when I ran out of mangoes. My skin felt fresh from the combination of the sea water, fresh water and fruit. For lunch I had a grilled vegetable salad with honey mustard dressing. The grilled vegetables were plantain, spinach, celery and black olives. I ate the last of the black olives. These were on a bed of mixed salad. For breakfast, I made a tropical smoothie with bananas, strawberries, papaya, mango and pineapple with just a pinch of cinnamon. It was fabulous. Tonight I’m treating myself to a garden salad with a side of “un” chicken and of course water. I had the same thing yesterday and it was awesome. Some of you may be wondering what “un” chicken tastes like or is made up of. It is a soya based product which simulates the taste of whatever meat… in this case it was chicken.

Tomorrow is my final day of the cleanse… or is it.

Day 7: The Ultimate Decision

April 14

In a good conclusion, you examine the main points in the body of the conversation, compare the end result with the beginning and then leave the reader with something to think about. I’ve been through a lot in this journey and when I look back from day one I see physical and emotional changes. The first day, I didn’t believe in myself, believe that this would work. In short I was openly sceptical from the supplements to the dietary restrictions. I put up many unnecessary barriers. In the middle, I really felt like giving up. Through the hardest part of the journey was disassociating myself from certain foods, comfort foods. Now I can watch Food Network without feeling malice to the chefs on the various programmes. I focus on the techniques which are used instead.

New foods came into my diet, especially black olives. I just bought a can and I can’t wait to devour them. I connected with my inner being through food as I carefully considered what I put into my body. I think, then debate the possible combinations of fruits and veggies. Experiment and experience! As a teacher I fully appreciate that teaching method. I’m running on the beach now and connecting with the ocean and experiencing beautiful moments with my son, because this experience has emphasised the importance of feeling and appreciating every moment. Today we touched jellyfish, which were washed up on the ocean. I had my vinegar on hand just in case we were stung. The expression on his face and in his eyes more importantly were extremely memorable.

After going through the experience today, I must tell you what I had for my meals. For breakfast another energising fruit smoothie, with strawberries, bananas, pineapple and papaya (no cinnamon this time) It was so fulfilling. I was drinking water today like it was going out of style. I couldn’t have enough at home and at the beach after my run. For lunch, I first prepared my son’s ham sandwich with a side of grapes and juice. I didn’t even feel annoyed at the sight of bread and ham. I just fed him like a good mother should. Then I prepared my salad, which consisted of spinach, mixed lettuce, carrots, pumpkin seeds and almond seeds. I bought some apple cider vinegar today. So I’m moving from my previous method of eating my green leafy vegetables doused in dressing.

*Where do I go from here? I spoke to family and friends and their opinions really helped to shape my decision.

I will continue living and eating in this manner. All my worries were unnecessary. Instead of a daily blog I will write every week, as a form of encouragement and as a coping mechanism. I have a wonderful family who supports me. I was afraid that I would be ridiculed, but they are helping me instead. They are intrigued by this change and they respect my decision. Fruits and vegetables will be the focal point in my diet. However, I will incorporate fish into my diet but they will be steamed or grilled or baked. In the summer vacation, I will try the 14 day female detox as a means to challenge my body, mind and soul.

I hope you enjoyed my journey. I’m heading to the Good Life Restaurant for more good food as I’ll be ordering “un” chicken again with the garden salad for dinner. I’ll be listening to good music and be around positive beings. The end of this journey marks the beginning of anewdae (a new day). Awesomeness!!

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