Worst. Blogger/Dieter. Ever.

Guys. I am awful at this. How long has it been since I posted?!?

I do have a few excuses though.

1. I moved back into school a little over a week ago and shit has been hectic. I’m in my last semester of a pre-professional degree program in Architecture, which basically makes my workload equivalent to that of a pre-law student. I’m doing my thesis, which has already consumed 4 months of my life and is about to consume 4 more. So stressful. And because I stress-eat, this challenge has been the last thing on my mind.

2. Being vegetarian at school is HARD. I mean, sure, we have a Chipotle. But have you HAD their barbacoa? How can I eat just peppers and onions and black beans and miss out on THAT? I’m going to try it though, so we shall see. I’ll update accordingly.

3. Even when cooking at my apartment, being vegetarian is insanely difficult. I should’ve foreseen this, but I was in a post-Jan-1 resolutionary haze. The thing is, I cook with my boyfriend who is a carnivore. A healthy carnivore, but a carnivore nonetheless. One of our favorites shared pastimes is cooking together, and when I can’t make meat, it kind of kills our favorite activity. We’re trying to work our way around this (Indian food definitely helps, he loves that stuff).

But that leads me to my big edit – vegetarianism isn’t working. I didn’t think it would feel like deprivation, but it does. I’m incredibly, incredibly disappointed to post this, but (and this is a big, big but) I am not giving up. I refuse to. I still have 50 pounds and 3 dress sizes to lose, and I’m not quitting until they’re gone.

I think the only path for me, though, is portion control. I’ve been reading a lot about my struggles, and I’ve realized that I can’t cut out the foods I love (such as meat) without feeling like I’m depriving myself, even if I do enjoy a vegetarian meal every now and then. What I need to do is carefully regulate my intake of everything. I know, this is a cop-out. But I’m trying to focus less on the fact that I abandoned a tenet of my yearlong challenge and more on the fact that I’m setting myself up for long-term sustainability. I’m not a terrible person, right? 😦

That being said…

I WENT TO THE GYM TODAY. Yes sir/ma’am, I went to the gym for the first time since October and it felt FREAKING AMAZING. I’m not one to champion exercise, I see it as a necessary chore. But working out (especially in this East Coast polar vortex, for some reason), felt absolutely incredible. I’m not quite where I was in October in terms of endurance and flexibility, but I will definitely get there.

I managed 4 miles on the elliptical, half a mile walking on the treadmill, and 6 reps on various ab machines (20-30 lb. weights). Very light, I know. But I’m easing myself back into it. And I’m so, so excited to keep it up. Damn, who knew working out felt so good? Of course, I’m going to hate it by tomorrow when the runner’s high wears off, but for right now…I feel a lot better about failing in vegetarianism. 😛

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Food: Dislikes and Weaknesses

Important to know about me: I’m unfortunately a picky eater. Despite being comfortable with vegetarianism (really, I’m going strong and not craving anything right now), there are more than a few things that I refuse to eat (I know, I know), and a couple things that may spell disaster for my new healthier lifestyle. You may ask why I didn’t list any Likes, but once you eliminate dislikes and weaknesses, it’s safe to assume I like everything else. 🙂

Dislikes:

Eggs – I know they’re a great source of protein, but I could never stand the smell or the texture. But I’m going to be lacking protein this year, so if I can figure out a way to mask the smell or hide egg in things, like fried rice, I may be able to stand them.

Tomatoes – I have never ever ever enjoyed tomatoes. I can eat them pureed or cooked down into sauce, but in pieces (either raw or cooked) they kind of make me gag. However I’ve become quite adept at picking them out of things, so this is just a fact of my existence now.

Bell Peppers – I don’t hate all vegetables, I swear. But store-bought green, red, and yellow bell peppers often have a really tough skin that I can’t quite stand. I find home grown or organic peppers to be a lot tastier, but as a poor college student I’m not sure I can afford those.

Coconut – I’m Indian! But I really don’t like coconut. I only bring this up because coconut is often used in savory applications in many South Indian vegetarian dishes, which would ideally be great for this challenge since many of them are incredibly healthy, but I just can’t stand them. That being said, coconut milk makes a great healthy alternative for heavy cream in many South and Southeast Asian curries and soups, so I will definitely be testing out that substitution this year.

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Weaknesses:

Potato Chips – I don’t even know how to explain how much I love potato chips, it’s that bad. They might account for a full 10% of my diet, which is gross. I need to make my potato chip intake significantly smaller. I should be having them less than once a week, if even that. Seriously, I’ll eat them in any flavor, any brand, with any meal. No limits. I need to keep them far, far away.

Indian fried snacks – all Indian people will hear me on this. They’re not healthy, they provide no nutritional value, and they are the most delicious thing in the world. There are a million different kinds, they’re all amazing. Thankfully good ones are hard to find at school, so these may be easy to avoid.

CHEESE – The worst part about cheese is that, in small amounts, it is quite healthy. Especially for someone who doesn’t drink milk regularly, cheese is a good source of calcium. Unfortunately I really, really love cheese. Any variety, though I prefer sharp cheddar. I heard somewhere that the serving size for cheese is the equivalent of 4 dice, which is much smaller than my usual intake. My biggest challenge will be eating the right amount.

If you want pizza, have it. [But] if you have too much or feel crappy afterward, own that choice. And if you don’t want to feel that way again, you know what to do.

– Sara Ramirez, Glamour Magazine

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