It's officially right around the corner. That's right, the pesca vegan-ism ultimate 2011 Lenten challenge. As I'm constantly treating this blog as half food information and half dear diary and since this challenge is not only changing up my diet but my overall lifestyle, therefore bound to affect my moods, I want to document as much as possible. But have no fear, I'll keep posting recipes and will try to keep them as friendly as possible to all eaters of food, no matter personal preference. I'll also need an outlet to express myself and that just happens to be best said here. So here goes.
The Good News: I'm feeling a lot better than I was yesterday. I had been doubting a lot of things and feeling very set back, and with this challenge approaching, it wasn't helping. But making that great dinner last night that could easily be vegan* changed my mood a bit. And a lot of good things happened yesterday that I was able to fully digest today.
My Concerns: It's been a bit overwhelming because food is an important part of what makes me happy, and really it's not even the eating part that comprises the majority of my happiness but the preparing. I'm worried that I'll lose interest in food if I'm constantly eating the same thing, but I'm hoping this will also challenge me to try new dishes, especially fish or vegetables I've been scared to cook. I've been prepping for this by researching recipes, checking out vegan blogs and just checking myself over the past few weeks with what I make and asking if it could somehow be vegan. I'm also concerned about eating out, and sales lunches, dinners and parties are a big (fun) part of my job. This Thursday I actually have a lunch at one of my favorite steak houses which is beyond frustrating, but it's just part of the challenge and I'm grateful it's at least happening early on.
Be Happy: This morning I needed something to pick me up, even if it was slightly artificial, out of my bad mood. So I decided to change it up-wardrobe wise- and wore my new boots, a sunny spring dress and an old Marc Jacobs coat I haven't put on in at least 2 years. It immediately made me happy to put together a bright outfit that isn't a normal "go-to". And when I got to work the elevator security guard who I see nearly every day asked me if I worked in fashion because I always look so well dressed (I don't but I can fake it most days), and I took the compliment to heart. So I need to understand that doing this challenge is going to exacerbate my bad days, but I just need to remember that it's not the end of the world- as proven yesterday and I can control what makes me happy and it might be a great outfit (which let me tell you has totally changed my attitude about today) over a piece of cheese.
Remember: This is a lifestyle change, I'm challenging myself to make myself better. I have tons of support, from family, friends, coworkers and I find support through others on their own journeys. Also important to remember- the gym is my friend. I love it once I'm there and feel so much better after, but lately with work and my social calendar it's been hard to motivate. But no more compromise and excuses, just go.
*Yes, I'm aware most pasta has egg in it- but I want to get into the habit of eating and enjoying and even more importantly shopping for carbs with wheats and grains, so as a concession to my challenge it will include whole wheat pasta