The Story Of The Green Monster

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I will not deprive you any longer of The Story Of The Green Monster. It should have been told many moons ago…

Early in January 2009, I sustained a pelvic injury that took me out of my marathon training. In addition to this, I was also experiencing chronic stress in my job that seemed to be getting worse and worse. In fact, it was at an all time high. As you may have read in my A Year Can Change A Lot series, during this time I was going through a really tough emotional time even though I could not talk about it on the blog.

The stress was eating away at me.

I lost my glow, my hair and nails were dry, and my eating disorder was starting to resurface. I consider myself to be recovered from my eating disorder, however, from time to time, my disordered eating behaviours resurface when the stress got to be too much. Off and on in December and January, I started restricting my food intake and counting calories which I had not done in months.

This really scared me.

I hated what the stress was doing to me. I felt so empty inside and some days so…dead. I felt so torn. I had Oh She Glows that gave me such an inner peace and happiness, but I felt like I couldn’t fully enjoy it because my full-time gig was casting a dark storm cloud over my entire life.

You probably don’t realize this, but the reason I started making green monsters was because of this void I felt in my life early in 2009. I had no energy. I was often up late at night until 3 or 4 in the morning worrying about work. I dragged all day long and I was turning into someone I didn’t recognize anymore.

After reading Kris Carr’s Crazy Sexy Cancer book for the third time, I was inspired by her Goddess juices that she made. If Kris was drinking green juice, then so would I.

I love that girl. Ever since the first time I saw her on the Crazy Sexy Cancer series on TLC.

So much in fact, I ended up interviewing her on OSG back in March 2009!!! The first celebrity on OSG, aside from Sketchie of course…;)

Back to the story…

It was a frigid, yet sunny day on January 20th 2009. Despite the cool and crisp weather outside, my disposition was not very sunny on the inside…

However, on this day, the Green Monster as we know it was born.

Determined to feel alive once again, I crammed the healthiest foods into my blender and I blended my little heart out. Of course, the first few attempts looked horrific and they tasted no better. But, I didn’t care. I drank every last drop of those green monsters before I made the long commute to work each morning. The green monster not only gave me energy, but it represented something much deeper than that- inner peace and self-love. I knew that the stress I had put myself through over the past few years was nothing short of damaging to every cell in my body. I created the Green Monsters as a way to take time out for my health. Even if I knew it was going to be a hellish day, getting in my Green Monster in the morning provided me with a sense of calm in my life.

This was one of my first concoctions:

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No almond milk, nothing. Just veggies. ;)

Many of you were super grossed out. I had to be strong for all of us…

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Trust me, I had attempts way worse than that…

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Classic Blueberry Gelification, right there folks…

Things at work got worse, until I had reached my limit one day.

On January 26, 2009, I gave my two weeks notice at my job. It was a very, very bad week. I drank those green monsters every single morning despite everything going on. I imagined that I was Popeye with superhuman strength. And boy did I need it.

Here is what I blogged about that night when I got home:

“I did it guys. It took every ounce of courage inside me and every ounce of strength and nerve, but I did it.

I gave my two weeks notice today.

I know, I still can’t believe it. I was in shock before, during, and after. I think my body knew something big was happening because I haven’t slept in the past few days and this morning I felt so sick to my stomach before leaving for work. I knew what I needed to do. I was at my breaking point and I knew that I finally, finally needed to put my happiness first after a long and hard year.

I feel relieved, I really do. I want to be doing something that I feel fulfilled in. I think we all want that. I have heard so many of your stories over the past few months and you all gave me hope. Why do I, or anyone else, deserve to be miserable in a job? We don’t, and the fact is, we can take steps to get there one way or another. I now have hope that I will find something that is my true calling. My passions have been awakened with this website and it has really made me realize that I come alive when I am helping others with respect to well-being, health, nutrition, fitness, and self-esteem. It makes me get up in the morning so to speak. And I need to find that in a job as well.

It was scary as hell today and I’m still not quite sure how I mustered up the courage. Sometimes we surprise ourselves and sometimes our own bodies tell us when enough is enough. We all know when we have personally hit out ‘limit’. I truly do feel like a million pounds have been lifted off my shoulder though.

My last day is Feb 6th- only 9 working days away! Here is to a less stressful and happier time ahead!!!! icon smile   The Story Of The Green Monster

We only get one crack at this life- why waste it being unhappy???

I know that I am going to look back on this time in my life and see it as a big turning point.

Wow…I can’t read that without crying because I remember how scared and afraid I felt that night.

This is the quote that I left in that post on January 26th:

“Today is not yesterday: we ourselves change; how can our works and thoughts, if they are always to be the fittest, continue always the same? Change, indeed is painful; yet ever needful; and if memory have its force and worth, so also has hope.”
~Thomas Carlyle

So as you can see the Green Monster is not just a drink that I have every morning.

It represents strength, self-confidence, inner peace, and a healthy glow.

It taught me to stop and breathe and to remember that there is only one ME and I had to take care of me…or no one else would.

It represents a new beginning.

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Each morning when I drink my Green Monster, I feel like it is a fresh start. A new day filled with many possibilities.

It represents health and self-love.

I no longer starve myself or skip breakfast in the morning. I don’t count calories or look in the mirror and cringe.

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It represents the journey and not the destination.

What’s your Green Monster story?

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica @ How Sweet It Is November 12, 2009

The green monster story is beautiful, and makes you even more inspiring than you already are. :)

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nicolene November 13, 2009

great story chick!!!!! yes in this crazy world filled with uncertainties we need to take control of the things that we have control over!!!!! The green monster is one step in the right direction
xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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Vanessa (Last Night's Leftovers) November 12, 2009

That is quite the story. So glad you found the Green Monster, and the strength to quit the job you hated. You’re one brave/strong chick!

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Meghan@traveleatlove November 12, 2009

I had to laugh looking at your blueberry GM. I did the same thing this summer, tried to take a sip, and the whole thing came out in a big glob onto my face!
I have been slacking on my GM drinking and my skin is back to being awful! It took about a month, but ever since May my skin has been perfect. Must get back into this great habit!

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Jackie @ TriToLose November 12, 2009

I love it. Thanks for sharing. You are truly an inspiration. :)

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Anna November 12, 2009

I had no idea this kind of story was behind such a nutritious beverage. Thank you for telling this story and I will definitely be trying my hand at a green monster in the very near future!

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Ameena November 12, 2009

Thank you for sharing such an important story!

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Ashley November 12, 2009

I have no story, but my SO does make fun of me for drinking my “lawn bag”.

You’re such an inspiration Ang! Hope you know that lady!

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Susan November 12, 2009

I love reading your blog and appreciate your honesty everyday!

I was wondering when it was that you created a “green monster” that actually tasted good? What was that AH Ha moment and what was in it?

Just curious, maybe I missed it above. . .

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Angela (Oh She Glows) November 13, 2009

it was adding the almond milk….make it less sludgy!

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Katie November 12, 2009

What great timing for this post! I’ve been super stressed at work lately and my mantra has been “carbs, carbs, carbs”! It’s starting to really take it’s toll on me. Just tonight I went to the store to stock up on spinach and produce to start making green monsters for breakfast again!

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Allison November 13, 2009

such a touching story. And you’ve made it into such a huge thing for so many people. i love having my GM’s after a work out in the morning, makes me feel energized and it makes me feel good that i am putting something good into my body.
I am glad you found yourself and didnt get stuck in a deep rut, we can all relate!

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Ryan @ Greens for Good November 13, 2009

I thank you from the bottom of my heart for creating those first GM’s. I remember thinking, I’d never drink that, the first day you made one. Then, as you started adding almond milk and bananas I got up my own courage. I’ve been drinking them since February and wouldn’t have it any other way :)

In fact, your GM’s were an inspiration for some recent projects I’ve been doing for grad school. I’ll send them your way when I’m finished!!

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Nikki T November 13, 2009

No wonder you always put your Green Monster in a fancy glass-it deserves nothing less :)
Now when I drink my Green Monsters, I will think about what they really represent!

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Hope November 13, 2009

Thanks for writing this up – I was inspired! I’ve been having a rough time at work this month so I might try these to perk back up.

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Kris November 13, 2009

Thanks for introducing me to GMs!!!! I love them and start every day with one :)

Cheers!

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Jessica @ Dairy Free Betty November 13, 2009

You are amazing! What an inspiring story… :)
You go girl.. you have inspired so many people!!

YAY YOU!!

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Jolene November 13, 2009

Thanks for writing about this! I just did a post today about my Green Monster obsession :-)

I was inspired to try one quite a while ago, because of your blog. I haven’t had a single mishap yet – and I have mixed a variety of concoctions (*Knocks on wood*).

So what is your “usual” everyday recipe for the Green Monster?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) November 13, 2009

The usual for me is the following:

1 cup hemp milk
3 cups cooked kale or spinach
1/3 frozen banana
1 scoop wheatgrass powder
Kyolic garlic (couple drops)
1 T peanut or almond butter
1 T chia seeds
3-4 ice cubes

Perfecto!!!!

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Jolene November 13, 2009

Do you taste the garlic at all?
I use 1 whole banana … when you use 1/3 do you taste the spinach or kale?

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Leanne November 13, 2009

This is great, Angela! I love drinking green monsters in front of people who have never even thought about putting veggies in a smoothie, let alone tried one before. They look so grossed out but intrigued at the same time. If only they knew the power!! ha ha

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Tania @ Moment Anew November 13, 2009

I love it! So inspirational!

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Janna (Just Flourishing) November 13, 2009

I haven’t had a GM in so long!

I definitely started making them right when you introduced them on your blog! I remember introducing them to my friends and they were so hesitant to try them but now they make them all the time too!

What a great story. Thank you for sharing :)

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Sana November 13, 2009

Maybe you will get a book deal too? You are one inspiring chica :)

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Megan November 13, 2009

What an amazingly honest and inspiring background story!!!

I also loved the Crazy Sexy Cancer documentary on TLC – funnily enough it was brought up in conversation today.

You’re SO close to convincing me to try a green monster! (I’m very stubborn, haha)

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Diana November 13, 2009

I’ve actually never tried a green monster. Maybe someday. :)

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JessicaR November 13, 2009

That’s such a great story! Thanks for sharing :)

My first experience with GMs were when I read a book a few years ago called “Green for Life” by Victoria Boutenko. She calls hers Green Smoothies, but they are similar, although I think yours taste much better with nut milk added :) My story isn’t quite as inspiring, but they really did change the amount of greens I eat — who knew spinach could be so easily disguised?!

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Laura November 13, 2009

You are always inspiring me with your stories! Thanks for sharing so much. I have been enjoying the green monsters for a few months now and will never live without them. Also, you have completely inspired me to move away from calorie counting and just focusing on nutrition. I haven’t gone vegan yet, I am not quite ready, but definitely a more vegetarian diet. I just cannot give up egg whites and Greek yogurt!
Keep up the good work – you rock!

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Whitney @ Lettuce Love November 13, 2009

Great story — you are so inspiring. I look forward to reading your blog every single day ;)

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Shannon November 13, 2009

Great story! I need to make these more often. I made many in the summer, but the colder it gets, the less I want to drink something cold. But my skin, hair and nails will probably appreciate it!

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Juli November 13, 2009

Angela-

Your honesty is beautiful and moving. What is even more inspirational is that over the past 5 months I fell into unhealthy eating and exercise habits, gained weight, and felt demoralized and down. I had not been reading blogs for months, but out of no where I remembered GMs. The turning point for me was when I started to make Green Monsters in the morning. I felt fresh. I felt light. I felt like I could turn things around: my health, my fitness, my attitude, my spirit.

So thank you for sharing your story and for giving us all a gift that represents strength, self-confidence, inner peace, a healthy glow and a new beginning.

I also LOOVE that I read this, sitting in my classroom, drinking my green monster :)

Love,
Juli

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Aisha November 13, 2009

You are such an inspiration to me and this story is beautiful. Thanks to you, I actually had a green monster for the first time in ages, recently I have felt like I have lost my glow and I am determined to get it back.
You seriously rule, you are such a great role model and are just amazing.
I am so glad you started this blog and that I found it, you inspire me all the time and remind me that happiness if achievable by working hard and trying.

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Paige @ Running Around Normal November 13, 2009

What a great story! I’m so glad Green Monsters helped give you the energy to do what you had to do! I drink a Green Monster every day before work now. I talk about them at work, and a lot of people are super grossed out, but I also have a couple people who are willing to try them :D When I make them, I just feel SO good about all those cancer-fighting ingredients working away in my body.

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Katie November 13, 2009

My one green monster was a disaster. My green monster though is running. Somedays the only thing that makes me eat 3 meals is that i KNOW I can’t run if I am hungry. I KNOW it leads to injury. Still it’s not easy on the days when you don’t feel pretty because you can’t change your hair, your face, w/e is bothering you, but weight you can always control.

Kudos for keep on keeping on and I’m glad you found something to keep things in perspective and control. They looks so healthy.

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Deva (Voracious Vorilee) November 13, 2009

This is so inspiring. Your first attempts made me smile – I love that you kept trucking along until you found a recipe that works for you. I need to get out the blender and pick up some spinach and try my hand at a green monster.

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RunToTheFinish November 13, 2009

oh that was a great story about how it was born!! I started drinking them because they seemed like a great way to get the nutrients my body so desperately needed during marathon training. They helped me to have more energy after running because my body could absorb it all so quickly

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Katy November 13, 2009

Ange, you always have such great timing! I’m sharing this post with my husband, who quit his job about 3 weeks ago. He just wasn’t happy or fulfilled, and finally decided to take the leap.

He’s trying to figure out what he wants to do — he’s a licenses architect who is passionate about beer. Not sure how he’ll marry the two :) but I told him that your story should inspire him to believe that his dreams CAN come true.

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Heather November 13, 2009

Thanks again for sharing your story! I’m torn between inspired and jealous – as usual. I SO MUCH want to quit my job and move into a more fulfilling life… but the practicalities (like, um, money and bills) are keeping me from the leap right now. One day though…

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Natalie (body-n-balance.blogspot.com) November 13, 2009

Thanks for the post, I just quit basically the job of my dreams a week ago because I have been feeling too stressed lately with working 2 jobs, going to school full time, and taking care of my hubby, so I finally got the courage and humbled myself to quit and I cannot tell you how relieved I feel!! It is amazing the difference can be when you lessen stress in your life and are optimistic about what is happening in your life too. I am a better wife, sister, daughter, friend, and best of all I am getting things done that I WANT to get done and it makes me feel just great!!!

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Shannon (The Daily Balance) November 13, 2009

love the story — so interesting and INSPIRATIONAL! ;)

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Beth @ DiningAndDishing November 13, 2009

Another great post Angela!! I can relate to this so much. Thank you once again for your honesty. It is so inspiring!

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Linzi (destination26.2) November 13, 2009

Angela, thank you for sharing this amazing story and drink. I have been hooked since making my first monster and have spread it on to all of my family and friends. I have never felt so energized before. This little guy is the star of every morning. Thank you!!! And on special days I add a scoop of peanut butter. Ohhhhh yum!

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Kimberly Lee November 13, 2009

My green monster story is simple. I found your blog while looking for interesting smoothie receipes…. I was apprehensive about drinking something “green”. But after the first one, I was hooked. Since then GM’s have helped to raise my hemoglobin levels to the point where I could donate blood, and now that I am pregnant, they are helping to keep my iron levels high enough that I do not have to take a dreaded iron supplement.

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natalie November 13, 2009

This is so awesome. Thank you for sharing. I Loved it. My GM story is so similar. Although I didn’t quit my job, and change my career…drinking my first green monster was a turning point in my life. I actually feel the same way about the drink. It is more than just a green drink. When I decided to make my first GM I thought if “she” (you) and many others can do this so can I. I can love myself, I change. My first green monster made me feel like I was making changes. I knew I would be able to eliminate my unhealthy thinking. I learned that I can drink a 200 or 300 calorie drink and not worry about the calories but be thankful for what I am feeding my body. I totally relate to your story and feel so many similar things! Thanks so much for sharing this. It is so wonderful to realize that there are so many of us out there on the same page going through the same things. Maybe we are a step ahead or behind each other but we can gain strength through each other!! xoxo

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