Hello again! I’m sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted. The last update I shared was that I was planning to go 21 days Vegan. I did 🙂 . It went successfully for more than 21 days. I completed 32.5 days vegan! (Yes, the ‘.5’ counts! I’ll tell you why later on)
As far as the weight loss aspect of it goes, I did lose a few pounds on it. However, I found a few vegan restaurants and some amazing frozen vegan options. Unfortunately, not all of these items were really ‘healthy’ choices. That’s when the weight loss plateaued.
It was definitely a learning experience though! I enjoyed the way I felt for sure. I felt like I had more natural energy, and felt a reduced amount of water retention or sodium build up in my body. I felt my hands and feet shrink! It was kind of strange at first. I literally tripped myself walking many times because my flats (flats are slip-on simple shoes similar to ballet shoes that look good for work) were too lose!
I didn’t cook as often as I’d like because of what I will refer to as “The Big Move”. We packed up our apartment, put most of our items in storage, and are now staying with friends in order to save for a house. One of my goals (for those of you have read my prior blog about my goals), was to cook more often, and eat more vegan more often. That didn’t happen as often as I would have liked it to, because of the fact that most of my kitchen was (and still is) in boxes.
After the trial run, here’s what I’ve learned:
- Almost everything has oil! – I tried to also stay away from all added oils in the products and food I was buying. That was the most challenging part. Even cereal has oil!!!
- Salads taste AMAZING when you get used to eating them regularly. I was truly shocked as to how wonderful the flavors and textures were when I was starving and ready for lunch.
- I missed eating animal products a lot more than eating the actual animal… I craved cheese, chocolate and ice cream most of the time. I saw other people eating chicken, beef or seafood during the trial run and it didn’t bother me. But watching someone eat macaroni and cheese…THAT was difficult. I was literally talking myself out of stealing their food (out loud! Yes, like a crazy person).
- Food manufacturers put animal products in almost everything!!! Here are the top 3 things I was the most surprised to find out had animal products:
- BBQ Chips (they use chicken stock or chicken flavorings)
- Seltzer/Soda waters flavored – “Natural Flavors” could be Beaver’s butt… I’m not lying… Check it out: Castoreum Food Use
- Granola mixes.. Seems like a no-brainer to some people, but it surprised me. Honey = animal product. Almost all granola bars or granola mixes use honey.
Now, you’re probably wondering why did I add the .5 to the count of days? I decided at 21 days that I felt good and wanted to keep going. I figured I’d go until I absolutely couldn’t any more. Day 33 happened to be “The Big Move” Day. I had a quick vegan protein smoothie for breakfast, and ate a vegan burrito for lunch. Things seemed to be going alright at that point.. half a day done! Then we ended up moving and working into the late evening, so we missed dinner time.
We went to a restaurant to eat at around 8 pm that night. In looking at the menu the only items they had that were vegan friendly were 1) a side salad, minus the cheese…2)steamed broccoli . Neither sounded good. I had worked up quite an appetite moving boxes, and walking back and forth tons. I decided it was time for chicken! My dinner that night for my first non-vegan meal was southern chicken (breaded, fried chicken breasts), mashed potatoes with butter, broccoli cheese casserole. It seemed super blasted heavy! I ate less than half the chicken, about 3/4 the scoop of mashed potatoes and all of the broccoli cheese casserole. (That casserole was my favorite as it was loaded with cheese!)
The next morning I finally had the big breakfast burrito that I had been watching my family eat each morning we were moving. There’s this new Mexican Taco/Burrito shop near the new house. They serve ginormous burritos. Previously, I would ask for the veggie burrito and take off the sour cream, cheese and avocado. Which basically left rice, beans, lettuce, tomatoes and pico de gallo. When I bit into the big breakfast burrito it seemed like heaven. Fluffy flour tortilla packed to the max with eggs, cheese and potatoes.
I’m sorry, Reader. I probably shouldn’t write a blog about food when I’m hungry. lol. Ultimately, that’s why I count the half a day in my vegan trial counter. I was vegan for most of that day, until dinner.
What’s my plan moving forward? To eat animals and their products in moderation. I’d like to continue to eat vegan the majority of the time. Though, I see the benefits for both humans and animals alike, I’m not sure I’m passionate enough about saving animals, etc. to go full vegan for a lifetime. I have more respect now for those that are lifetime/lifestyle vegans!
I was very happy to have completed my 21 Day Vegan Challenge (and then some)!!! Something else that makes me extremely happy in a dorky, Monica from Friends, obsessive kind of way….. I got a label maker!! Finally! I’ve wanted one for years.
Here’s a picture of something I worked on with my label maker:
*day dreams about what else to label with her label maker*… Okay.. I’m back. Thank you again for journeying with me! This time through the vegan challenge and the Big Move!
I’ll start cooking again once my pantry and pots & pans are unpacked!