I decided on my way back from Cabo San Lucas this past Monday to do this thing where I quit sugar and processed food for one year starting the day after I turn 39 (tomorrow). I decided it for a number of reasons, like:
- I feel like crap when I eat stuff my body doesn’t recognize as food. Seriously. I had a scone the other afternoon and it sat like a lump of charcoal in my stomach for, like, 2 hours. It also messes with my sleep and I think my emotions are more up and down. There is no real benefit.
- I’d like to normalize my weight. I’m not really sure where I’ll “settle” but I’d like to be at a place that I’m happy, especially in the leanness department. I’m tired of having discussions with my upper abdominal fat on long runs. Enough is enough.
- I’d like to just be normal around food in general. When I eat broccoli, I don’t think about “when I can have more broccoli” or “ooh that was good I’d like another broccoli”…I just eat it and move on. Sugar and processed stuff hijacks my wiring somehow.
However, my original plan, I think, needs some changes. First, I don’t think it’s realistic to eat just protein, veggies, fruit, nuts, and some dairy PLUS chemical bricks that are protein bars as well as protein powder for a year. As I’ve shared my plan with friends, I’ve gotten lots of suggestions. People are awesome at “helping” and I actually do like the back and forth discussions so thanks and keep the suggestions coming! My conclusion is that I think I can accomplish the three things above with the following modifications.
- I’m going to be OK with whole grains. Think brown rice and raw oats. No bread, no creating Frankenfoods out of the list of things I said is ok. But I think beans and rice can be a good meal and I am toying with the idea of overnight oats. So there you go.
- Same with legumes. Especially if I can learn to sprout my own. This sounds a little nutty, but also super cool.
- Two things I’m in “jury’s out” mode on are: potato chips (leaning towards no because, I mean, come on) and dark chocolate (leaning towards yes because hmm…it IS supposed to be good for me).
What I’m taking out, as sad as I feel about it, are the Quest bars. They are chemicals and the spirit of this is clean eating. I can’t in good faith keep them. Not to mention they seem to do the same thing cravings-wise as other sugary snacks do. So out they go. I’ll keep my low sugar protein powder, but I’ll evaluate as we go.
So whole, unprocessed grains and legumes are in. Chemical protein bars, sugar and processed crap is out. Potentially hello to dark chocolate. At this point, no thanks to potato chips. And of course, all of this starts Saturday. Between now and then, I’m inhaling any cake or ice cream that is presented to me because it is my birthday tomorrow and that’s how life SHOULD be. Thanks for reading!