Thursday, August 15, 2013

Going Vegan

Before all you carnivore paleo, gluten free or just normal people start the " you wont get enough protein", you need blah, blah, blah..... just let me try this again.  I was a vegetarian for years, which is quite easy as you have dairy- which means yogurt, cheese, chocolate etc... I was a vegan for a short time but I was not a good vegan, I did not like rough green veggies or beans- which are both critical for a healthy vegan diet.  I was also very poor so buying high quality food was a challenge - I was a starch vegan and that did not work.  I was a vegetarian for a while, during my early running career, and was injured frequently. At the time I was convinced by others that my injuries were due to my diet .... but now I know they were due to over striding in running- shin splints, stress fractures- classic injuries form poor form.

On our recent vacation (more about that later) I read Scott Jurek's recent book Eat & Run.  First off, the guy is an animal (but does not eat them)  Amazing to read about his Ultra running career. So impressive.  He eats a plant based diet and the book takes you through his choices and transformation. Riley has gone vegan and it seems I was leaning toward Paleo, but fundamentally the treatment of animals is not always that fair and can easily be manipulated. So then I wrestle with I can buy healthy but still the animal living conditions, hormones and impact on the environment (pigs)  really bothers me.  While I can buy organic and "free range" that still does not ensure fair treatment of animals, (for the majority of the population buys regular meat, poultry etc...  Read   Eating Animals for a good insight.

So why vegan....because of inhumane treatment of animals or because a plant based diet maybe better for me.  Both!  I want to try it and see....

Day 1-  this does not include beverages (water, electrolytes etc)
Coffee- almond milk and splash of whole foods non dairy hazelnut creamer
Lara Bar before my bike ride - dates, peanuts, unsweetened chocolate, sugar, cocoa butter, vanilla and sea salt.
Spinach ( no egg whites which is my staple) , EVO, salt, chopped almonds
grapes, nectarine
large salad- mixed greens, tofu, beets, spinach, peppers, mushrooms, shredded unsweetened coconut, sugar snap peas-
dried fruit and nuts
1/2 whole wheat bagel with almond cheese
Lara bar - no non dairy sweets in the house (just returned from vacation - have not gone shopping)

Day 2 (so far)
Lara Bar pre crossfit + same coffee mixture
grapes - too many
more coffee
dried fruit and nuts (Costco sells the most amazing fruit and nut mix)
large bowl of tomatoes - I usually toss with balsamic, sea salt and feta - ah no feta so I mixed it up with hummus- worked well!! needed more salt but was good
Amy's Vegan pizza- (sprouts) shared with Riley and it was good- note that no cheese pizzas burn quickly on the top
Dinner planning on:
Sweet Potato Bean Burgers:  Steam or boil 2 medium peeled and chopped sweet potatoes until tender. Let cool, then mash together with 1 can (14 ounces) drained white navy beans. Stir in 2/3 cup wheat germ will sub flax seed , 1/2 cup chopped red onion, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Form into 6 patties and grill 4 minutes per side, or until crust is crispy. In a blender, combine 1 cup parsley, 1/3 cup olive oil, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 chopped garlic clove, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Blend until smooth and spoon onto burgers.
- Edamame roasted corn, tomato, black bean, red pepper salad, avocado salad


Goal is plant based - 3 weeks AND to avoid processed foods when I can. 

Lara Bar processed?  maybe but with 6 ingredients I feel okay
Amy's pizza- yes processed but organic and natural- 100% non GMO wheat flour dough topped with roasted veggies.