Hello friends, followers and fellow bloggers!
I am sad to notice that it has been over a year and a half since my last post. The last time I posted here, I was about to run a half marathon. I'm proud to say I did complete that half marathon, and it was an amazing experience. I didn't do it in an impressive amount of time (it was just shy of 3 hours), but I did finish that race and I'm still very proud of that accomplishment. It's something I will never forget.
On the flip side, I have been in a slump for the last year. I haven't been working out regularly, and I certainly haven't been eating to compensate for that. There are a lot of reasons for this, but they seem like only excuses at this point. I'm disappointed in myself for letting all the hard work that I did to become healthier slip away.
So, I am taking new steps to improve my health and quality of life. Starting yesterday, my sweet boyfriend and I are embarking on a 21-day clean eating challenge. This means: no gluten, no dairy, no soy, no sugar, no artificial sweeteners, and no alcohol. For 3 weeks. We know that it is going to take a lot longer than 3 weeks to get where we want to be, but we want this to be our kick start project.
Here's some background on why we decided to go this route. I often struggle with making good food choices - in my opinion, it is the hardest thing about losing weight. I find it much easier to go to the gym than to say no to chips or a few beers. In fact, I'm that person that says "I worked out today, so I can eat all this cheese (substitute your favorite guilty pleasure food here)!" So, by making a concrete decision to avoid those foods for awhile, I think it will force me to make good food decisions, and hopefully teach my body (and brain) to crave healthy things instead of unhealthy ones. After these 21 days, it is my personal hope that we can follow this clean eating diet 80% of the time. You cannot go through life denying yourself of everything all the time - it just doesn't work in the long term. But by following the rules most of the time, and indulging yourself on occasion, you can keep a healthy (and sane) lifestyle. There were also MANY things I read about the benefits of clean eating, but I will save those for another blog. BECAUSE ....
Over the next 21 days I will be posting EVERYTHING I EAT RIGHT HERE. I'm doing this for two important reasons. 1 - to hold myself accountable. 2 - to hopefully give someone who might be considering a clean eating diet some food ideas (recipes will be included). At the end of the 21 days, I will also post an update on how my body changed with weight and measurements. Cool? Ok - here we go!
Monday, November 4
7:00am - rise and shine!
8:00am - 2 scrambled eggs with salsa (made fresh by HEB, NOT from a bottle!), salt and pepper. Coffee sweetened with stevia. (If you don't know about stevia, it's a totally natural sweetener that is not sugar, so it is ok to use on this diet! It's awesome!)
11:30am - chicken fajita salad. Grilled chicken with grilled onions & bell peppers, seasoned with cumin, oregano, salt and peper. Serve over lettuce with 1/2 an avocado. Homemade dressing - olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, dry mustard. Full recipe here: http://localfoods.about.com/od/salads/r/LemonGarlicDres.htm. Water.
3:00pm - Cappuccino larabar. Carbonated water with 2 slices of lime. (Larabars are an amazing invention - they're in the nutrition aisle of your grocery store, most likely, with all the granola bars & protein bars. But they're made of JUST fruit and nuts, sometimes raw chocolate depending on the flavor you choose. Certainly preferable to most protein bars that have a bunch of processed stuff in them. The cappuccino one has the following ingredients: dates, almonds, cashews, fair trade coffee & vanilla extract, for about 200 calories. They are a great easy snack that requires no prep from you. May I also suggest the blueberry muffin, banana bread, and peanut butter cookie flavors.)
6:00pm - grapes, strawberries, about 20 almonds. Water.
9:00pm - 6 ounces of baked salmon, seasoned to your liking. Spaghetti squash. Asparagus with lemon juice and olive oil. Water.
11:30pm - bed!
As a side note - my boyfriend (Ryan) has to work late a few days this week, which is why we had such a late dinner. Ideally, I would like to eat much earlier than this. I also want to state for the record that overall throughout the day I had energy and did not feel excessively hungry. I did get a little tired about 8:00pm, but I think that's due to the fact that we ate later than we normally would.
And that's it! Leave your comments & questions below if you feel so inclined!