Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Let's Talk Food

I've decided to take on a food challenge in addition to my swimming challenge. I think I've got the swimming pretty well under control, and I've succeeded with fitness challenges before so I know I can push myself to get this one done too.

However, my eating has been - not so great. For instance, I had some graham crackers and milk for an evening snack on Sunday. I usually don't even buy processed foods. It's much easier to eat healthy when the stuff isn't in the house and it would take some major effort to get it. I only had the graham crackers because I bought s'mores fixings for the hiking/camping trip that never happened on the 4th. Granted, I only really had one meal Sunday, but the point isn't really the calorie intake, it's WHAT I'm eating that's the issue.

Over the past couple of weeks I've really let my eating slide and have taken in a fair amount of sugar and grains. It's really hard to remember in the moment that those types of foods make me feel bad. (TMI Alert->) When I cut out the carbs, I very rarely have gas or have any sort of upset stomach. When I eat carbs, all that comes rolling back.

Also, I've been drinking way, WAY too much Diet Coke. To the point that on a couple of days it's made me feel shaky. My favorite thing right now is Diet Coke with a packet of True Lime. I'm still a fan of True Lime (like a lime wedge in a packet!), but I need to lay off the Diet Coke. Need to remember: water with True Lime is tasty too.

I've decided to leap on Jenna at the Paleo Project's Whole30 Challenge. This is a challenge to eat Paleo for 30 days. Jenna's challenge started yesterday, but I'm starting today because we had friends in town and had a farewell dinner last night at a restaurant that has amazing desserts. Might as well end my crappy eating with a bang.

On the Paleo diet you cut out grains, sugar, legumes and dairy. I honestly think the dairy part will be the hardest for me because I love dairy. I use cheese a lot to accent my vegetable dishes and to spice up my salads. I've never noticed any type of physical reaction to dairy, so I'll try adding dairy back in after these 30 days and see if it has any effect on me. Fingers crossed that it doesn't and I can bring reasonable amounts of dairy back into my diet. But for these 30 days, I'm going to do the real challenge.

The Paleo diet also focuses on whole foods (thus, the WHOLE30 challenge). I generally eat whole foods anyway (occasional graham crackers notwithstanding) so the cooking and planning part won't be hard. It's just time-consuming. I've been swamped at work lately and I know the only way I will succeed is if I plan, use the crock pot more than I have been this summer, and PLAN.

Jason says he'll be happy to pick up my slack in the Diet Coke department. He's so giving.

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