Well, it's been interesting! From everything I'd read online, including Optifast clients' blogs, the first 3 days are the hardest. I won't say they were easy but they were not, thankfully, as hard as I thought they would be. The biggest challenge time is between my 2nd meal replacement and lunch - and so I've started to save my ShapeWise Chew (basically an appetite curbing piece of candy with milk minerals and conjugated linoleic acid) until then and that helps.
Of the 5 flavors of shakes I got, the chocolate, chocolate hazelnut, sweet strawberry, sweet berry, and vanilla, the one I can drink the easiest is the plain chocolate. And yes, the water HAS to be very cold. So what I'm doing is making 1 shake before we leave as the water from the fridge is really cold plus I add some crushed ice to it and drink that on the drive in to work/gym. When I get to work I put water in the other blender cup and put that in fridge and then I alternate blender cups so there's always one with cold water in the fridge. That's been helping. They're still a little chalky tasting but tolerable.
One thing I tried is to make a pudding out of them. I did this Thursday night at home with the vanilla and let it set in the fridge during supper time and had it a bit before bed. Not too bad! The chocolate hazelnut I did at work and it also was much better than the shake version. Friday night I added a 1/2 tsp of sugar-free cheesecake flavored pudding to the vanilla shake mix and made a pudding with it - YUM!! Today I'll add some of that to the berry shake as a shake and see if that helps. I did also get some fat-free whipped cream (on the free foods list) to try with a berry pudding and I have some sugar-free Torani caramel syrup to add to something as well as powdered peanut butter. So tweaks to help make them better tasting! Definitely definitely cold cold cold water, though!
The fiber drinks come in Tart & Tangy mixed fruit drink and a Lemony Tea. The first time I drank the tea it tasted so BRIGHT. There is no other way to describe it. Just wow - it was a lot of power! The fruit drink the next day was tasty! I was a bit concerned as it smelled like Kool-Aid but it tasted like a fun beverage out on the town! I bet it'd be really good if I had a Soda Stream..... The second time I drank the tea it was much more palatable - and I think that means my palate is already changing a bit.
The meal bars I've had so far (I bought 2 variety boxes): I started with the cinnamon bar and I wasn't sure I'd like it but it was really good! Thursday was the Smores Bar - another winner! And Friday was the Caramel Cocoa - definitely no lack of chocolate for me!! All very good and I'm looking forward to trying the rest, too.
Suppers have been fun, too. Well, for me. Maybe not so much for Casey...but he's a really good sport! Wednesday night we had pork and a zucchini/squash/bell pepper blend (and don't tell anyone, but these bells? I may have not actively disliked!). Thursday was similar but with a fajita flair. (He asked me to get fajita seasoning, chicken and cheese and I forgot the chicken and cheese.....) Friday night we tried a Profile recipe, Roll in a Bowl. It's basically your meat and a coleslaw mix for the vegetables. Casey added he thinks 7 red pepper flakes from a spice jar - the kind one puts on pizza. Holy MOLY did that make it HOT HOT HOT!! But really tasty and I foresee this one being a favorite. Dad, bless him, has been all on board with the healthier suppers. He mentioned something about having gained a bit of weight since he retired... And he brought out some oatmeal cream cookie sandwiches and chocolate cakes for him and Casey last night but said if it bothered me he'd put them away. So that helps a lot - instead of joking/teasing he's trying to help. And I'm fortunate that generally "not within reach" means I won't be grabbing for the sweets. They kept them back by them and I enjoyed the cheesecake pudding.
I really thought the 64 ounces of water would be the hardest part - I don't like water, I much prefer my Diet Dr. Pepper. But I borrowed Casey's Bubba Keg - it holds 52 ounces!! and when I get to work I fill about 1/4 of the way with ice then top it with water to the top. It's been empty either just after lunch or before lunch! I have a 16-ounce glass at work that I then fill with again a small amount of ice and water and even that's been gone before I leave for the day. Now, it does help that it's bitter cold out and furnaces and heating systems and wood stoves are in full force so I'm super dry but it's still pretty impressive.
Thursday was my first coaching session and it was with Troy, the same coach I did the initial consultation with in November. He said he was glad to see I got signed up and was overall really nice. These can be scheduled on my lunch break at work and so that helps a lot. When the local branch opens up it might be trickier but my supervisor has already offered up 1-hour lunches if I need them. (I have a GREAT supervisor!!) We went over the basics and we'll dig deeper next week. I did forget to ask about invoices again but when I order next week I'll definitely remember!
I did get the lab results back and, as I suspected, they were not as good as we wanted. I'm borderline diabetic, my blood pressure was high (I was definitely dehydrated plus the machine was being wonky but still), my iron is low, and my cholesterol levels were high. So for now, an iron supplement + iron-rich foods, fish oil, and diet and exercise plus monitoring of my blood pressure. So when I go back in a few months it will be interesting to see the changes!!