Engine 2 – Prep Week!

Hello and happy fall! :-)

Brr, it’s finally getting chilly here in Austin, TX, with temperatures only in the 60′s degrees tonight, as I watched my 14-year-old son’s football team win another game, keeping them with an undefeated 6-0 record. I love cool weather fall football!

It’s another crazy busy this week, but I thought I would post a quick update for those of you who may be following my 28 Day Engine 2 Journey! :-)  I have only gotten through a few of the chapters in the book (I should be finished tomorrow), but the great thing about the book is that it is a quick, interesting and entertaining read. It is AMAZING what a long line of physicians the Esselstyn family comes from, making it hard not to be glued to every page!

After reading some of the book, and watching all of these videos, I decided that I should take a week, per their recommendation, as a preparation week. So, tomorrow I am having my blood drawn and I will share with everyone what the results are. I also am using this week to cut out all dairy, what little I was still rarely consuming.

I have had a few questions as I have “prepped”, so I turned to Natala, my Engine 2 mentor.  My questions were:

  • Can I still drink my daily Vega?  (Usually 1 scoop of Vega, a 1/2 frozen banana, some blueberries or Sabazon Acai, big handful of spinach and a cup of water)
  • I can still juice, right?

No more of you for a while! :(

The answers were shocking and I hesitate to share them with you. If you REALLLY want to know the answers, and why, then comment below…and I’ll consider telling you. ;-)

I have mentioned in previous posts, that it is hard for me to be a finatic about anything.  So, while I will go into this challenge using all of the rules of the diet for 28 days, I would be surprised if I ended the 28 days and never had a Vega shake or green juice again.  But, maybe as I end the 28 days, I will look at those more like they are treats.  Who knows – but what I do know is that I am excited to get started and excited to be held publically responsible for sticking with it, since some of you will be counting on me to do so!  ;-)   It will also be fun to post pre/post weight, and blood work results!  Well…maybe not the pre-weight? :-)

As I have told my other HealthyMammas, if I learn one thing from this experience – whether it is a few good recipes, or how my body reacts to absolutely no processed foods, dairy, meat or oils for 28 days – I will consider it a great success!

So, the bottom line is that DAY ONE for me is on Friday.  Why Friday?  Well, because I could say I will start on Monday, but then Monday is soccer practice, Tuesday is a football game, Wednesday is taking Allen (my 14-yr-old) to Wednesday worship at church, Thursday is………..well, you probably get the point.  There is just not really a good day to start, so why not Friday.  PLUS…. drum roll, please!

I found out that Greenling actually has a Engine 2 Diet Grocery Box!!  Oh, how excited I was to find this out!!!  Oh my gosh!  I will have 5 days of dinner for two that are pre-measured, pre-chopped, and recipe included!  They have an Engine 2 Box 1,2,3 and 4.  So, if I enjoy Box 1, I will order Box 2 the following week!  Did I mention that they deliver?  Oh ya, and everything is organic whenever possible!  Nice!  Make it a little easier for me!  It really helped that my delivery day was Thursday – hence talking me into starting Day 1 on Friday! :-)  I’m a busy, healthy mamma…so this is truly ideal for me.

Oh and a little tip, if you live in Austin and plan on doing this, use coupon code AW1X when you checkout and you’ll get 25% off of your order.  It works now, but I can’t promise it will work later.  I just used Google to find it.

Here will be my meal plan for Friday – Tuesday.  I guess I’ll be on my own for a couple of days after that until I get Box 2. :)

  • Day 1 – Sweet Potato Lasagna
  • Day 2 – Black Beans and Rice w/ Vegetable Relish
  • Day 3 – Confetti Couscous w/ Seasonal Mixed Vegetables
  • Day 4 – Two Bean Chili
  • Day 5 – Jammin’ Burritos

Who could resist?

Wish me luck as I start my journey – and I promise to post how I like the recipes, how I feel, and more. :)   And feel free to share with me how you are doing on the Engine 2 Diet.  I’d LOVE to know!

Life, love and, and laughter….


Don’t look back, it won’t do any good
Don’t look ahead you’ll just be misunderstood
Everything you need could be right in front of you
It doesn’t take much to see what is true
They say we are going to die if we go on like this
Who do you believe? Every story has a twist
Take a look around, tell me what you see
People in the world just trying to be free
What about all those things you could have done but you don’t?
They say things happen for a reason, you don’t do them, they won’t

I’m lookin for life, love and laughter, everything in between, and what happens after.

-Donavon Frankenreiter

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About Kim

I am the mother of two wonderful kiddos, Allen and Zane - and happily married to Lance (HealthyDaddy). :) I love learning about healthy eating and my journey led me to finding a way to keep all of this truly exciting information in one place. I found that I was forgetting recipes that I loved a year ago - or misplacing them. This website is a way to keep it together, while sharing with the world (Or the 5 people who will read this!) what I have learned. I'm trying to change the world...or at least our eating habits...one meal at a time. :)


  1. Stephanie Bodenhausen says:

    Yes, I want to know the answer to why you can’t have Vega or green juice! I checked the Engine 2 diet book out from the library recently and his father’s book on preventing and reversing heart disease. Probably the two key books which got me to cut out meat and dairy from my diet recently. Cutting out oils has really been the kicker. Will be eagerly following your progress. Good luck!

  2. Emily Villanueva says:

    Ummm…..yes. Must absolutely know why no Vega or no juicing. (I’m just going to quit deleting my ‘what the heck’ statements and wait for your answer :) ).

  3. Hannah says:

    I really must know! Why no Vega or green juice?

  4. Engine 2 says:

    We thought we’d chime in and answer.

    We do not encourage people to drink their food or get their caloric needs through liquid (of any kind). Unless someone is unable to chew because of a medical condition. This is why some elderly people consume their calories through liquid – there is a medical reason to do so. But we are guessing most people here are not in that situation, and have strong teeth ready to be used!

    Juicing is particularly not a good idea, as Dr. Esselstyn says – it is extracting mostly the sugar from the fruit/vegetable and just leaving sugar, getting rid of all of the fiber and many other important parts of the food. It is like (as he says) pouring liquid sugar down your throat. You are always better off consuming the WHOLE vegetable/fruit.

    *There are a few medical conditions in which an all water or juice fast might be beneficial at times but only in a supervised environment for specific medical conditions.

    Smoothies should be seen as an occasional treat (like a milkshake). Again, we want people chewing their food not drinking it. There is more and more mounting evidence about not consuming calories through liquid.

    This is especially important for people who have heart disease, diabetes, pre-diabetes, insulin resistance and or weight issues. Consuming that many calories so quickly in liquid form is not the best thing for the body.

    Simply consume food through eating it. We bet you will get used to it and you will probably see some good results.

    As for the protein powders – again, we want people to consume their protein through whole foods – whole grains, beans, vegetables and fruit. There is NO need to add protein powder to the diet, remember that the problem most of us have is getting too much protein, so there is no need to add it on top of a healthy plant-strong diet.

    Trust that eating whole plant-strong foods will be exactly what the body needs. There is no need to add to it, or to make things more complicated. Make it simple, at Engine 2 we are big fans of making this as simple as possible.

    Hope that helps! Great job Healthy Mamma’s!

    • Kim says:

      Thank you Engine 2!! As I mentioned in my post, there will be some varying opinions on this and for 28 days I will do it! However, I would be surprised if I got rid of my Vitamix or Vega permanently – I believe it’s all about putting together different things you learn throughout a process of finding what works best for your body and what makes you feel the best. I’m sure I’ll take a LOT out of the Engine 2 Diet, but can’t encourage everyone to throw out the Vitamix quite yet. :) Hugs to all – it’s a journey about empowering yourself with as much knowledge as possible and then incorporating the things you can stick with and the things that are best for you into your life! I TRULY believe that if a Vega (in your Vitamix :-) ) makes you happy and feel great in the morning, yet you consume most of your protein, fiber, vitamins, etc., through a low-fat (oil free or limited) Vegan diet, then you are going to be pretty darn healthy and doing better than at least 90% of the rest of the population. And I bet Engine 2 will still think you are on the right track! :)

  5. Indira Dejtiar says:

    I difinitely am eager to learn why no Vega or juicing. I was on the verge of getting a Vitamix. And since reading your blog I’ve tried Vega and loved it. I’m a little bummed but do tell.

  6. Jennifer says:

    Can’t wait to hear about it !

  7. Engine 2 says:

    We agree. We encourage everyone to do as much research as they can. We will say that as for smoothies/juices if someone has heart disease/diabetes/or is battling obesity smoothies and juicing will more than likely damage that persons health. So, if you are in a health crisis, we would suggest staying away from them. For others, as an occasional treat it would be okay, but for those in a health crisis, it could do more damage.

    For more information, there is a thread on Facebook that Jeff Novick (RD) talks about it, we encourage everyone to read the studies he links to – and then make informed decisions.

    Again, for people in good health – a smoothie every so often or even a juice is not going to do harm to them, but for someone in health crisis they will want to avoid liquid calories all together.


    Hope that makes some sense. And there are plenty of uses for your vitamix! :)

    It’s all a journey – every day simply make a few more healthy decisions and learn a little bit more.

  8. Melissa says:

    Wow ~ I’m loving this post AND this comment string!! :) I dove into my “oil-free” challenge on Monday…it’s going great so far…I’ll post more about my thoughts on Friday. I haven’t been able to afford a Vitamix yet…so, I’m not too sad about the smoothie thing. ;) Taking my green juice away from me…well, that’s a whole other story! I’m kicking and fighting that one…but, I promise to be a good non-juicing HealthyMamma for 28 days. :)

  9. Christy V. says:

    So excited to hear that Greenling offers an Engine 2 box. I’m going to check that out now. Can’t wait for Friday to see how your first day goes.

  10. Engine 2 says:

    Just give it a try and see what happens :) Again, it’s not that an occasional one is bad for you, especially if you are already healthy. It is when it becomes part of the regular diet and or if you are someone in a health crisis that it can be an unhealthy decision.

  11. Danielle M says:

    I did the E2 diet for almost 60 days. It was great. I lost about 18lbs post pregnancy. I felt great. I can’t wait to see if you talk about pooping during your 28-day experience. haha. The hard part for me is that my husband does not want to eat the E2 diet. He loves steak and animal protein. At that time, I was preparing a meal for me, a different meal for my baby (pureed foods) and my husband was cooking his meals. And I would end up trying to eat the E2 recipes and they would last an entire week for just one recipe. I was exhausted with all of the different meals going on. I would like to do it again because I felt great. Another hard thing for me was cooking things w/out oils. Stir Fry was sticking to the pan, even with water, and that was discouraging. I know that I will be doing it again, especially after reading, “The China Study.” I just need some better skills for cooking without oils and more efficiency in the kitchen with so many different meal requirements.

    • Pancho says:

      Danielle, cookware makes a huge difference. It might be a good time for an inventory. You do not have to buy a whole set, decide which piece you will use most and pick up a new piece. Do some research and shop smart. Read the information that comes with the new piece and follow it.

      • Danielle M says:

        I really don’t want to use Teflon. Any suggestions on cookware that isn’t dangerous to your health but can be good for no oil cooking?

        • Melissa says:

          Danielle, did you try sauteing with veggie broth? I’ve been doing an “oil free challenge” for the past week or so. I’m not having any problem cooking stove top without oil…I just use veggie broth. I keep a container right by the stove and use it generously as needed. The broth does disappear fast so I have to keep a close eye on things while they cook…but, other than that it works great! Now, baking has been a bit more of a challenge…and I still haven’t figured out how to roast veggies without tossing them in EVOO first…still working some kinks out in those areas. I’ll be posting more about this topic as I discover more ways to get around it. :)


  1. [...] 28 day “Oil-Free” challenge. I wanted to support and join my fellow HealthyMamma Kim on her Engine 2 Vegan Challenge but I’m already vegan…I’ve been dairy free for almost 2 years and meat free for [...]

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