Over the weekend, I finished the AdvoCare 24-day challenge and I’m about to burst with the results.
I haven’t posted regular updates about the last 24 days. I’ve savored and struggled with those closest to me. During the challenge, I kept private video diaries and pictures on tumblr for my coach and friend Dani. I’ve unprotected them and you can check out all the nitty gritty details over here. I’m very happy to share a summary of the final results now.
First, I will let the photos speak for themselves.
No pushing out, no sucking in, no photoshopping (except for lighting). Just 24 days of change. I can see changes in my upper back, stomach, legs, backside and I really just feel FANTASTIC.
So, let’s jump in and review the past 24 days.
I posted a little introduction to AdvoCare here, but let me rehash a few things.
What is AdvoCare?
AdvoCare is a nutritional company. The idea is to add things like probiotics, Omega3 fatty acids, vitamins and cleansing products to make your body function properly. For some, it’s a weight loss program, but for many, it’s simply a way to make your body perform at its highest level. Practically speaking, AdvoCare is composed of pills, fiber drinks, energy drinks and meal replacement shakes.
What is the 24-Day Challenge?
The 24-Day Challenge is a sort of kick-off to the AdvoCare program. You can get products and use them without doing the challenge. The challenge puts a set of products together for you in two phases that puts your body into high-gear (forgive me, this is my newbie explanation). The first is a 10 day cleansing cycle to cleanse your bodies of toxins and then the second is called the Max Phase where it really ramps up your metabolism.
Can I do this without AdvoCare?
I wrote this answer before the challenge:
Absolutely. I’ve eaten clean before and stayed on a good exercise routine. However, this time I need help. I can’t seem to kick it on my own. This will put me on a regimen that will keep me accountable and give me extra tools to be successful.
I would now answer this yes and no. Yes, you can eat clean and exercise on your own but I truly do not think I’ve ever experienced the level of energy and clarity before and do not think I could do that without AdvoCare. Also, I don’t think I could or would have done the cleansing phase without AdvoCare. So, yes, I think it’s possible to lose weight but not feel as great.
What Else I Did Along with AdvoCare
Beyond taking the AdvoCare products, I quit sugar. I still have things like BBQ sauce and ketchup and put brown sugar on my sweet potato but I gave up things like cookies, cake, and ice cream which I was eating with abandon.
At the beginning of the challenge, my main goal was just to eliminate the desserts. Towards the middle, I started tracking calories and then, towards the end, I started paying attention to protein, carbs, fiber and sugar through MyFitnessPal.
A normal day before I started would be Starbucks and a banana for breakfast, waffles mid-morning, Taco Bell for lunch with a large Mountain Dew, two cookies in the afternoon with some chips, a decent dinner with the family and then chocolate ice cream with peanut butter for dessert. I can’t even imagine the number of calories. Oh, but I do miss my Mountain Dew!
Think about the exact opposite of that and that’s what I’m eating at this point. Basically just meat, nuts, veggies, fruit and dairy.
In addition, I started the 30 Day Shred so I was exercising just 20 minutes a day.
I also sometimes in front of my new light therapy box in the morning but wasn’t consistent. The light is also supposed to help with seasonal mood issues.
First and foremost, I must, must, must talk about how I FEEL. Before AdvoCare, I wrote in my notebook I felt:
- Lack of energy
- Bad memory
- Hard time concentrating
- Hungry – afternoons/evenings
- Crave sugar!
- “thick” (feeling, not physical looks—almost like living in molasses)
Now, I have more energy than I know what to do with at times. And it’s not just the caffeine in the system. I used to have coffee every morning even when I was eating clean and I have NEVER felt as good. I’m no longer drinking coffee but feel as if I have sustained energy throughout the day. I have normal tired days when I don’t get enough sleep but overall, I feel COMPLETELY different.
I wake up easier. I’ve been waking up in the mornings without an alarm and ready for my feet to hit the floor. Before, I was sluggish and tired in the mornings. Now I feel refreshed in the mornings.
My brain fog has completely lifted. I am thinking more clearly. I almost feel like I physically see the world more clearly. You know those allergy commercials where everything is fuzzy and then they swipe the screen for it to look more clear? That’s the way I feel at all times now. My head is clear.
I no longer feel lazy and unable to exercise, or even move to the next room.
I no longer feel hungry all the time. I don’t crave food and am not always impatiently waiting on the next time I get to eat something with carbs and sugar.
I feel peaceful and overall have a clean feeling of wellness.
I would do what I just did for the last 24 days many times over and pay double to feel how different I do now.
As for the numbers, I think you’ll be surprised to know I only lost 4.5 lbs. It doesn’t sound like much but between my chest, waist, hips and thighs, I lost a total of 6”!
Now, everyone asks if it’s AdvoCare that did it. I honestly don’t know. I did make quite a few changes at once. However, I can tell you I’ve done the other things before and have never felt this good.
Other Notes About AdvoCare
Here are some other general thoughts about AdvoCare products specifically:
- It’s A LOT of pills. You take hundreds of pills over the challenge. This TERRIFIED me when I started. I’m an awful pill taker and I really wasn’t sure I could get them down. My throat would tighten at just the sight of some of them. Over the 3 weeks though, I got REALLY good at taking pills. I now no longer fear taking pills. Just sit up straight, tilt your head up, breathe deeply before taking them and focus on something in front of you while you’re swallowing.
- The fiber drink in the cleanse phase is pretty disgusting but if you can handle pulpy orange juice, you can get this down. Just mix water and OJ with the fiber drink and guzzle with a straw!
- I didn’t use the meal replacement shakes because they are not gluten-free. We used a protein shake from our local health store. (Check out my full post on AdvoCare and Gluten)
- Neither Scott nor I could handle the RAW bar. It must be the oats that are not truly gluten-free. Thankfully, it’s not part of the regular system. (Check out my full post on AdvoCare and Gluten)
- We love the Rehydrate recovery drink.
- Fruit punch is my favorite Spark flavor—I LOVE that stuff.
- We did add in the optional Catalyst and ThermoPlus to the 24 days.
- I did have a very bad day where I felt shaky, anxious and as if I was going to faint. I did not eat according to the instructions and really paid for it. You have to stick to the program.
- AdvoCare is not made up of magic diet pills. You have to change the way you eat. That said, Scott changed very little about what he ate (he eats pretty well), did not exercise any more and still lost 1” in his waist.
After the Challenge
I love how I feel so much that I’m continuing on with AdvoCare. I’m going to do one more Max Phase and then probably go into maintenance with just ThermoPlus (promotes metabolism) and Catalyst (protects muscles).
I’ve talked to some people who hated AdvoCare, couldn’t stay on the system and didn’t like the way it felt. That is totally respectable. Not everyone is going to experience it the same.
While I had ups and downs, my experience turned out GREAT and when you feel GREAT you want others to feel GREAT. If you want to poke around at the products, link over to our shop.
I hate to sound like the plethora of weight loss schemes covering your Facebook wall but if you are battling weight loss or feel any of those terrible symptoms I had, I highly recommend you at least looking into it. I’d love to chat in the comments with questions or send me an email!
This post is not sponsored—just my results and personal opinion!