You Can Get Fit!

How I Rewrote My Daily Routine

Posted on: June 8, 2010

Have you ever wanted a different perspective on life without too much commitment? I did. So, I decided to eat 100% vegan, but only committed to one day.

What was the draw?

  • My initial motivation was to tighten up my diet. I typically don’t consume much in the meat/dairy category as it is, but having to think about everything I eat makes me more conscious of everything that goes in my mouth.
  • But then, I discovered that forays into alternative eating habits just get me thinking differently about food. By combining foods in ways that I ordinarily would not (for instance, to make sure I eat enough protein during the day), I discover new flavor and nutrient combinations that will definitely become part of my diet, no matter the restrictions. This is a good thing!
  • And, I learned a heck of a lot about myself. While I’ve cooked multi-course vegan meals many times, I’ve never spent a whole day vegan until today.

Now that the day is almost over, what did I learn?

  • I thought I had planned enough. A little bit of planning goes a short way, but a lot of planning goes a really long way.
  • Lack of planning 1: I should’ve stuck with more tried-and-true recipes. A day where I have limited food resources is not a day to try multiple new recipes. I tried two today that I thought were going to be good, and they were just so-so. For one meal, I ended up doing what I promised I wouldn’t do – fruit and peanut butter on whole grain bread (yes, technically vegan, but creatively cheating!).
  • Lack of planning 2: I need to remember that main dishes that are mostly bean, veggie, and grain-heavy do not supply as many calories as my normal intake. Thus, I will get hungry more quickly. And that is OK.
  • I learned that stirring in a spoonful of peanut butter or almond butter does wonders for a mediocre stew.
  • And I learned that this type of diet, for me, takes as much discipline as the “write down everything you eat” weight loss diet. Lacto-ovo vegetarianism has been easy for me to follow in the past, but I realize how quick I am to garnish my soup with a dollop of yogurt, or to put more than a dab of butter on my baked sweet potato. Yes, there are vegan alternatives, but there’s that planning thing again…

I think I’ll try this again, soon. But I’ll menu plan a bit better, first.

My point? Making a change for a small amount of time gives you a new perspective, and you aren’t stuck with it forever. So now, it’s your turn! Is there anything you all want to try out for a day? It doesn’t have to be as time-intensive as veganism, but for example…

  • Eat the recommended 5-9 fruit and vegetable servings for one day, or more!
  • If you have time, try two exercise sessions in one day. Ignore the “I’m tired” voice in your head, so long as it’s only in your head.
  • Eliminate soda from your diet for a day. (Unless it’s your only caffeine source. And life without caffeine is just scary, in my world!)

You get the idea. Anyway, pick an idea, pick a day (this is the important thing – set a date for yourself, because “someday” never happens), and let us know about it in the Comments section!

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6 Responses to "How I Rewrote My Daily Routine"

I love the idea of taking a goal (or a new lifestyle) one step at a time! I know I’m not alone when I take it over the top and go at it full force only to give up after a short time! I also agree that lack of planning is one of the biggest road blocks when it comes to healthy eating! If I don’t plan AND prepare ahead, I end up eating whatever I have a craving for when I am starving! For example, I usually only eat my a homemade dressing but if I don’t take the time to make some for the week, I won’t eat salad at all and my veggie intake will be super low for the week!

Thanks for the great post!
~Andrea
yogabyandrea.com

Thanks for the comment, Andrea! I figured this would be a great way to “road-test” another way of eating for a bit. It’s only a day, which makes it totally possible! And, as we know, it’s the little screw-ups that teach us the most about ourselves. 🙂

i love that you tried going vegan for a day! it really isnt that hard, but like you said it takes some planning. do you think veganism is something that you are going to try to do regularly?

Hello hello! 🙂 Great seeing you here! I don’t think my body could routinely handle this, since I can’t tolerate much soy these days. It would take a lot of planning to work my life around beans and grains, and I think I would burn straight through that on my heavy workout days. Still, worth an experiment, at some point. When I get my planning act together, I might try 4 days on/3 days off.

I find it appealing to try something for a day or week, a month is way too long for such experiments for me at this point. I would love to give being a vegan a try.. maybe someday soon…? 🙂

Hi, Anne! 🙂
Yeah, it’s great to be able to try something out for a day, especially if it’s a healthy habit. You know you can probably make it through one day, right? And I surprised myself, because I now think I can make it through a few days in a row eating vegan. That was something I didn’t know before! (So, this is an experiment in self-discovery, too…)

Cheers from the other side of the pond!

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