The Good-Food Challenge – Day 13 Update

August 13, 2010

Oi…how do the days end up flying by so quickly?? Seems like I need to do another 30-day Blog-A-Day Challenge after this… my intention to blog every other day hasn’t panned out.

So, Day 13 update of my No Caffeine/Alcohol/Refined Sugar/Processed Food/Red Meat/Dairy Challenge = I am feeling fabulous. I’ve been eating apples and almonds and spinach and asparagus and pears and swiss chard and cucumbers and carrots and summer squashes and chicken and dates (hmm a chicken and date dish…sounds nommy!).

I was walking around my office the other day & realized that I felt totally rested and relaxed. Not tired, not groggy, not tense, not anxious. I’m gonna guess the healthy eating is to blame – I don’t have the ups & downs of caffeine & alcohol & sugar, my body isn’t taxed digesting processed foods & red meat. Also, going out is less appealing when you’re not drinking, so I’ve been getting plenty of rest, and getting up early to walk or jog or do yoga. The other morning around 7am an old man yelled at me – “I SAW YOU SPRINT – INSPIRATIONAL!” A good way to start the day.

Alcohol & Caffeine: In the past 13 days I’ve had one non-alcoholic beer (which still has minute amounts of alc) and a decaf coffee (also has small). But aside from that, I’ve resisted offers for free drinks, bottles of booze lying around the house, and multiple urges to stop at Urth Cafe or Point Cafe or The Conservatory for Coffee or Vee’s Cafe for a tasty beverage. Can you tell this has been challenging for me?

Refined Sugar: I haven’t eaten any refined sugar in its most obvious forms – chocolate, desserts, ice cream, etc. I have had two “Cheat Meals,” out with friends, and one of them included TWO CUPCAKES…and I gave both of them away to co-workers!!! EVEN THOUGH it was a “cheat meal”!!! Imagine – two (basically free) cupcakes in my possession (one Red Velvet, and one Chocolate) that I carried all the way back to work and gave away without taking a bite. This is HUGE for me. (I actually didn’t get dessert at either of my cheat meals). So, I applaud myself on the sugar front.

Yesterday, I had to go to a work lunch (I got a salad), and for dessert they ordered Tiramisu and a beautiful-looking Strawberry Mousse. Again, I resisted temptation, though I’ll admit I felt a bit better when they started choking on the Tiramisu’s cocoa powder.

Processed Foods: Aside from my two Cheat Meals (involving sandwiches, and one involving fries), I haven’t had any fried, fast, frozen, or packaged foods. I have had whole-wheat pasta a few times (with non-dairy pesto and summer squash!), and though that’s technically packaged, it’s not considered “processed” since the flour hasn’t had its nutrients processed out of it. I had bread during my Cheat Meals, but aside from those 2 sandwiches I’ve only had a few bites here & there.

Dairy: I did break down and eat a few little cheese cubes at Whole Foods – they had samples of my FAVORITES, Campo de Montalban and Robusto. Ok, so maybe I have 15 or 20 FAVORITES, but those two are pretty high on the list. I have resisted ice cream on a few occasions, which is huge for me. Oh and I also resisted Garlic Cheesy Bread at Claim Jumpers. But I did have some Bocconcino cheese at the Point during my Cheat Meal. With little orange heirloom cherry tomatoes (do those even exist?). And it was delicious. My Cheat Meal sandwiches both had cheese.

Red meat: The only red meat I’ve had was bacon (bacon also falls into the Processed Food category) during my Cheat Meal. It was REALLY GOOD, perfectly crispy bacon. I have been wanting a hamburger. Or a steak. Or some ribs… Hopefully at Burning Man! (Am I gonna find any red meat at Burning Man, or are there too many hippies?).

So, I feel like I’m doing well. Out of 39 meals, I’ve only cheated on two, and aside from a few bites here and there, have pretty much stuck with my Challenge. Oh, one thing I forgot – in a moment of unconscious amnesia/habit, I accidentally took a bite of a Red Vine during Movie Night. I swallowed it but threw the rest away. It was stale anyways.

I have about 16 days to go. I’ll be doing just short of 30 days, cuz on Aug 30th I’ll be at Burning Man. Drinking booze and coffee and eating bacon and ribs and candy. And god knows what else.

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