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Donnie Toivola

Donnie Toivola – My Juicing Story

Donnie Toivola - before and after
Hi! I’m Donnie Toivola and this is my story about how I went on a juice fast and was able to get my life back. I’ve tried numerous diets, pills, and exercise routines in the past and through juicing I’ve learned that there is no shortcut to your health. What we eat has such a huge impact on our health and our lifestyle but we often give in to temptations that ultimately affect our lives in a very bad way. Why do we do this to ourselves? It’s so easy to go through the drive through as opposed to planning, cooking, eating, and cleaning up after a healthy home cooked meal. But is it worth it?

Donnie Toivola and How it all started

Donnie - Before the fast

Over a year ago I got up to the biggest I’ve ever been. I was in the worst shape of my life and years of abusing my body with junk foods, sodas, alcohol, and convenience foods were starting to take its toll. I was up to 235 pounds before I decided to start watching what I was putting into my body. I was on a number of different medications and was in a lot of pain. Over the next 6 months I was able to drop 20 pounds just by eating healthy and exercising but I hit a plateau and was still having to take all of my medications. To top things off I was also told by my doctor that I was going to need surgery on my back to fix my sciatica. I was very depressed as it seemed all the hard work I did didn’t do much for me. It was then that my friend Adam told me about juicing.

I looked into juicing and was immediately excited about the possibilities. I read from people like Joe Cross, Jason Vale, and Drew Canole. I thought if they could do it, so could I! So I did my research and tried my best to find out as much information as possible about juicing and the benefits of it. Information on Juicing was hard to find and it was discouraging that I couldn’t find a decent plan that included a well-organized shopping list. I eventually made my own and decided it’s time to give this juicing thing a shot.  I was a little nervous about going just on juice but I figured I could give anything a shot for a few days. What’s the worst that could happen?

Donnie Toivola - First Shopping for Juicing Experience

I ordered my juicer from Amazon and was excited to give it a go. I had a doctor’s appointment after work a few days later and my weight was 215 pounds. When I got home I was excited to see that my new juicer was on my door step. I didn’t even get out of the car. Instead I headed straight up to the store to get all my produce so I could start juicing immediately! After gathering up all of my produce and I felt a little funny putting 24 cucumbers and a shopping cart full of fruits and vegetables on the conveyor belt at the checkout line. I got a few weird looks and the cashier eye-balled me up and down before asking what I planned to do with all these cucumbers.  I just told her I was starting a juice fast.

Donnie Toivola – My First Juice

Tomorrows meals prepped for the next morning

After I got home and organized my produce, I opened up my juicer and had a rush of excitement run through me as I made my very first juice. I was surprised at the taste as it was actually good! That night I setup my routine and planned out how the next few days would work. I prepped my produce that night so I wouldn’t have to do any extra work in the morning.  Come the next morning I just grabbed my Ziploc bags that each contained a meal and began to juice them. I had a juice that morning and brought two juices to work with me that I kept in air tight thermoses and stored in the refrigerator at work.

My First Juice

See, the place that I worked at during my first juice fast had a fully stocked kitchen and they even catered in very nice lunches for us on a daily basis. As the day progressed I started to feel hungry so I grabbed a juice before lunch so I wouldn’t be tempted to get up and eat something when lunch arrived. Lunch had arrived. It was a freshly seared Ahi Tuna, mashed potatoes, fresh steamed broccoli, and an assortment of fruits and desserts! It was one of my favorite meals that would occasionally get catered in. I was very tempted to give in but I didn’t. Watching everyone around me dig into their food was making me seriously think about my juicing. The smell was really getting to me but I held my ground and didn’t give in to it. I was proud of myself for doing so. Now, I didn’t tell anyone at work that I was doing this in case I failed miserably on the first day. That was blown after a few people asked why I didn’t have a plate of this delicious food in front of me. A few people thought it was a really cool idea while some just thought I was crazy. I didn’t let that bother me though.

Ready for work with my juice

I drank my next juice a little too early and went 5 hours without being able to make my next juice. This was really a struggle but I learned that I either need to take more juice to work with me or not drink all my juice anytime I get a craving. Day 2 and 3 was a breeze as I didn’t have any symptoms besides a few cravings that I quickly learned to push aside. Day 4 I developed a slight headache that was easily fixed by taking a few ibuprofen throughout the day. I was finally getting into the swing of things and during lunch I found it amusing to just sit and watch people eat and chew while I kicked back and drank my juice.

Donnie had a tough day

By days 5 and 6 I had a good routine down and things were going great at work and at home. I’m a single father of two young boys and while I still had to cook and take them out to places it didn’t bother me anymore. I could be in front of food and not even get tempted. I thought I was on top of the world now and things were only going to get better. On top of that I was down to 200 pounds! When day 7 rolled around the design team which consisted of me and two amazing girls were called in for meeting. It was a meeting to tell us we were all being laid off and our department was going to be outsourced from now on. It was a huge shocking blow as I had been there over two years and was proud of the work we did.

What do most people do when they get laid off in groups? They go out to eat and drink. Well, I took the news as best as anyone can. I had a juice and went out with the girls but still stuck to my juice fast. I took the next few days to reflect on what I was doing and how to move forward from this unfortunate event.

Donnie Toivola – Results of my Juice Fast

After My Juice Fast

I had a doctor’s visit the next day and it was great. I was able to stop taking all of my medications and my blood pressure was down from the 210/110 range to 112/73. I was excited but I knew things were looking good because I couldn’t remember the last time I felt this amazing. I was down to 195 pounds, my hair was growing like crazy, and people even commented that my skin was shiny. I’m a guy so I never really paid attention to if my skin was shiny or not but I guess it was another symptom of the juice fast. It was not just helping me lose weight but it was taking such a huge positive effect on my overall health that I decided to focus my energy towards so I could help others have the same success that I was having and get information based on my experiences that was not available to me when I started.

Donnie Toivola Juicing pics

During the next week I continued to juice while experimenting with different recipes and ingredients. I was able to get down to 190 pounds and was very excited as I hadn’t weight this much since I could remember. Friends and family were amazed at the results I was getting. I was even able to convince my mother to go on a juice fast. She had some of her own really amazing results also! I decided to start incorporating solid fresh fruit and vegetables into my diet. I kept everything raw and over the next week and a half was down to 182 pounds. So I had lost 20 pounds through better eating choices and exercise over the course of 8 months. I then lost another 25 pounds in the two weeks while on the juice fast, and another 8 pounds while still juicing and including solids during the following week. So in a year I lost a total of 53 pounds and 33 of those pounds were from juicing and eating healthy afterwards.

I went from a size 38 to a size 32 in my pants and went from an XXL shirt down to a Large shirt size. I never realized how fun shopping for clothing was until I could actually get normal sized clothing. I was also able to get off my medications! I could chase my boys around the park without getting tired and actually keep up with them! I was feeling the best I had ever felt in my life and it’s all because I changed my habits and let the juice be my medicine.

I still juice today but I also eat normally and am careful about what goes into my body. I’m not a vegetarian as I do consume meat, just not at the frequency that I once did. I typically go on a juice fast once or twice a month and do between 3-7 days not because I have to, but because I want to. Juicing has become a normal part of my life and something that I will continue to do for the foreseeable future.

I hope my story empowers you to do your own juice fast and share your success with others as I have done. As Hippocrates once said; Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food.

I’m always here at JOJ if you have any questions. Feel free to post on the forum, remark in a comment, or even email me directly if you want. I wish you the best of luck in your health!

Before Donnie Toivola's Juice FastDonnie Toivola - After the Juice Fast

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  1. Hi Donnie, I hope you can provide me with some guidance… My husband and I decided to start juicing to lose weight. So we got everything we need and started 4 days ago. He gets on the scale every day and shows a loss of at least 2 pounds. After 4 days I’ve lost 1.4 pounds!! I know women lose slower than men, but I really thought I’d see a bigger loss especially in the first week (even if it’s just water). Is this normal? Am I just destined to a 1-2 pound loss per week? It’s so depressing when I had such high hopes of at least a few more pounds the first few days. People that he work with have been doing juicing and have had amazing results; what am I doing wrong?

  2. Hi Donny, Iv’e always heard that you should drink the juice as soon as it is made to get the highest nutrition. You mentioned bringing a thermos to work with your juice in it. Does it lose any nutrition doing that?

  3. itamay

    Hi Donny,I had already bought my juicer and have started to juice two days ago when I was looking for recipes and came on to your site, your story is fantastic and so inspirational, I am in my early fifties and am on blood pressure medication, I had bloods done a few days ago and now have an underactive thyroid too, on the plus side , I excerise everyday and meditate, I do a thing called callanetics which I love, it’s very empowering.
    I swore I would never diet again as I believe dieting has made me larger over the years, I have done the lot , weight watchers, slimming world, Atkins, you name it.
    After my bloods were done the other day I realised I needed to clean up my act and I genuinely thought of juicing as a way of cleaning my blood and liver etc, I really don’t want to go on more medication for cholesterol.
    I was thinking of just doing breakfast and lunch as juices then have a small dinner, so that I could get some good green stuff which my husband hates and still have a life, could I do this and get benefits?
    I could manage a three day fast some weeks as well, I never with myself now as I was going crazy doing numbers and I’m pleased with how my body is changing after six months of excerise but feeling more energetic and losing the middle age spread would be a bonus.Thank you.

  4. Hi Donny! I’m a first timer juicer and I feel clueless to what I have to do or where to start. I’ve been searching for juicer machines, but I suddenly start to feel overwhelm with how many they’re out there. Please help me out and what tips you have for new beginners.

    thank you from Desperate 4 a Change girl!

    • In my experience slow press juicers waste much less produce to give u the most out of your produce and a cleaner drink. I experimented with 2 centrifuge juicers before getting my slow press and even though when researching all the slow press juicers I came across were very expensive until I finally found the big boss slow press juicer at Walmart for $98. It can’t be washed in the dish washer or in too hot of water, but other then that it’s way easier to clean and you get a lot more juice and less waste then faster juicers. Good luck!

  5. Hi Donnie!

    Wow!What a great juicing story you got here! Congratulations! I am currently working on my weight loss. I’ve been exercising for 3 weeks now and started to eat less carbohydrates and sweets. I’m an Asian so I’m not that tall compare to western ladies. I’m 26 and I’m kinda heavy for my height. Anyway, I started to drink more green tea which I believe helped me a lot as I don’t crave for too much food anymore, thus results to my body improvement. I’m a teacher and my students have noticed that my face and body got slimmer in some way. Yes, I used to have a very chubby face, lol. But then of course, I’m excited to try the juicing effect. It might give me a faster result soon. I have watched Drew Canole’s juicing videos last month but did not get a juicer yet as I wanted to try the power of green tea, diet and exercise first.But then of course, with more people like you who strongly believe in the power of juicing, I’m encouraged more to try it.Thanks for your inspiring story! :)

  6. Congrats and good work Donnie! Amazing that you stuck to it after such devastating news! I am considering doing a fast of 30-45 days. I am in the military and I need to lose 45 ish lbs for an upcoming or test to pass. I do own a juicer and have dabbled into many times for 2-3 days here or there. I have been iincorporating veggies and fruit more but I need some sort of overhaul and I don’t want to join ppl at work with Atkins as I do see it being healthy. So my two main concerns are , can you workout a lot while juicing, and will it slow your metabolism . Total I need to lose 85lbs but 45 lbs to get my waist to pass. I want to juice 30-45 days and slowly go back to eating but I’m worried in two months after I’d gain all of it back quickly and be worse off. Obviously you are mainiting, so did you see this an issues at all?

    • Chris, thanks for your message, and thank you for serving! 45ish pounds within 30-45 days is very workable if you stick with it. While you can work out, it’s important to not over push yourself while juicing. If you listen to your body, you’ll know when enough is enough. Juicing will not slow your metabolism. If anything it will help it. You’ll only gain it back if you go back to your eating habits. Juicing will do much more than help you lose weight, it will help you manage eating habits and control your weight. I never had issues about weight gain and metabolism after I started including solids back into my diet. I’ve been more active now almost two years later than ever. Keep at it and keep me posted Chris. I’d love to hear back from you! Cheers!

  7. Hi Donnie, Ok today is my first day on JOJ and am excited about it! I got up at normal time and with no prep done ahead of time made breakfast juice and lunch and still got out of the house normal time after cleaning! I read your site this am again before juicing to get a good idea of a recipe and looked at one of your pictures where you put a bag in your juicer to save time on clean up! WOW how awesome was that idea! It saved a ton of time and I didn’t have to run the garbage disposal and wake up anyone else in the house!! So im 275# this am so Ill keep you posted on how progress goes these next few days! OH is there anything we shouldn’t juice? Anything that’s higher in calorie or anything that shouldn’t be used? I like pineapple but see no recipes with it in there….let me know your thoughts.

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