Diary of a lifestyle change

The moment of clarity came in a hotel room with way too many mirrors. I caught a full-on view of my bare ass and it stopped me in my tracks. I had to do something, and fast. I'd been hemming and hawing for a long time, telling myself that my eating habits were "OK", but somehow (I blame medications, of course) I had gained 15 lbs in the last year and that ass, while never my best feature, had crossed the line to absolutely unacceptable. It doesn't help that I am pushing 50 and things are going... downhill fast.

Whatever was going to happen, it was going to have to be drastic.

It didn't take long for me to combine info I'd gleaned from a coworker who had recently gone vegan and a book I had recently bought to formulate my plan.

Here it is:
  • Eat as many veggies as I can stuff in my face, with leafy greens at the base of the pyramid. Salad, salad, salad!

  • Try to cut back animal protein to less than 10% of calories.

  • Eradicate as many refined carbs (sugar, white flour) as I can.

  • Be cautious with whole grains until I get a good chunk of weight off.

  • Eat a small amount of nuts, maybe 1-2 oz per day.

  • Wean myself off dairy (ah, butter! ah, cheese! oh, half&half! sob!)

  • And just in case that's not enough, decaffeinate while I'm at it. (That alone should take care of most of my little, ahem, half&half problem.)
So what's left to eat? Greens (lettuces, spinach, kale, etc.), just about any fruit & veggie you can think of although "starchy" ones are considered whole grains. Some brown rice and oatmeal; maybe whole wheat pasta. And beans, my new best friend!

No, I'm not going vegan -- I really really dislike the label and all it implies, and besides, I'm not that disciplined! It sounds scary to think about, but honestly, how can I go wrong basing my diet primarily on fruits and veggies, nuts and legumes, and eventually grains?

The hard part: Changing my cooking habits, especially on those weeknights when I get home, completely brain dead, with my young son at 5:45pm and have to get something on the table, pronto. Hate to admit it, but "Blue Box" comes in handy at times like that. I don't really like to cook much anyway, so this plan requires a lot more mental energy than I'm used to spending on producing food, at least initially. And I'm not restricting my son to the same foods so I have to plan for that too.

But when I start to waver, all I have to do is remember that moment in the hotel room. And I've lost 3 lbs in the first week, which makes it a little easier to take.

Besides, sharing the tedious minutiae of my process with the universe will be fun!

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