Okay, wow. Sorry for being MIA. I disappeared to Wanderlust Fest (full post coming soon) and I was so busy! Here’s a semi-roundup of how the rest of my One Week of Vegan challenge went.
So I’m going to sum this up as best as I can. For a more detailed post about Wanderlust Fest, click here (link coming soon!).
First off, I want to mention that yes, there is a lack of food here. Wanderlust is crazy and we pretty much snacked on free samples all day because there is absolutely no time to eat! I also cannot remember for the life of me what I ate on Wednesday, but I guarantee it was all vegan.
Thursday was hectic. My mom and I were packed and off to Wanderlust. For breakfast I had cereal (Kashi, very few ingredients!) with homemade almond milk. We went to Target to get some other snacks. I picked out a Godiva dark chocolate bar (no milk of course) with almonds and some fruit. For dinner we stopped at The Green Truck in the Wanderlust Coop and I got an awesome veggie burger with a beet sauce.
It didn’t occur to me until later that the beet sauce might have some sort of cream or mayo in it, but I’m hoping it didn’t…
Friday I snarfed down a piece of peanut butter toast and went to our first activity of Wanderlust, a meditation with Sally Kempton. For lunch I got a sushi bowl (I can’t believe someone stole my genius idea!) with tofu. It was deliciousssssss. I’m normally not a tofu fan, but this one was cooked beautifully.
The woman that worked at the food truck said the “Mama’s Balls” were fried tofu. I’ve had them before, but that was over a year ago. After biting into one I’m prettttty certain there was crab (it tasted like substitute crab though) in it, so I blew it. Sorry guys!
Saturday was the hike from hell. I woke up, ate half an apple, then went on a four mile uphill hike to High Camp. Worst idea ever. Not only was the hike the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but I hadn’t eaten enough (obviously), the altitude made it difficult to breathe, and I was tore up from three hours the day before. I didn’t eat until around 3, and I got another sushi bowl (shortest line in the Coop) and a lavender Kombucha. I was kinda grumpy so I woofed down my food and then took an hour nap before dinner for my mom’s birthday. This is where I blew it the most. There wasn’t a single thing on the menu even remotely vegan. I wanted to order what I wanted and not make a fuss since it was my mom’s birthday dinner. So I ordered a beet salad (came with a goat cheese mousse… heaven), pea soup (ordered without pancetta) and a mushroom/tomato pasta (came with sausage but I ordered without; it also came with cheese but I took it off).
Sunday was our last day at Wanderlust and probably the most fun. I started the day with a free bowl of almond cereal from the Kashi booth, with no milk. After our activities for the day (SUP yoga, hooping, and a class led by MC Yogi and DJ Drez) we packed up and left. In the car I snacked on blueberries and (uh oh) Trader Joe’s Gorgonzola crackers. Ugh, I know! I was starving though from only eating once and they were all we had. But after the long drive home my mom and I came home to a home cooked bowl of (vegan) minestrone soup. Yay for daddy! I wish I took pictures, but I ate that shit so fast that I got a stomach ache.
So what did I think of being (almost completely…) vegan for one week?
Overall, I really enjoyed it. I did. I didn’t miss the things I thought I’d miss as much as I anticipated. I didn’t even think about it. Here are some things I loved most:
- Being thoughtful about my eating choices. I couldn’t just eat what I wanted. I couldn’t grab a candy bar from the jar at work. I had to pick my snacks wisely. I had to anticipate bringing food I could eat or just going hungry. All of this led to me being much more thoughtful and grateful for the food I put in my body.
- Cutting back on sneaky empty calories. A candy here and there at work, a handful of chips, a gummy chew my mom keeps in our home entrance, a mini drumstick after dinner… Yeah, it adds up. Not being able to eat any of these “small treats” daily really made a difference in my energy levels and body. I noticed within a few days that I was slimming down a bit. Not dramatically, but I feel much more confident in my body than I have been since starting my desk job,
- Feeling like a solution to the problem. This is probably where vegans can get that “holier than thou” attitude. At some points when asking if something was vegan or eating an alternative to animal products I did get that “I’m awesome” feeling. It really does feel good to feel like your helping the planet and hurting the factory farming industry by not consuming animal products.
- Feeling good. I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m still not convinced that not eating animal products contributed to my uplifted spirit and slimming down a bit. I think that it was more closely linked to eating more unprocessed foods like fruits and veggies. Basically, I think it was more what I was eating more than what I wasn’t.
- Getting creative. During my vegan week I got to get creative in the kitchen. From making a vegan dessert (that my dad is so obsessed with that he wants it for his birthday dessert now) to coming up with an alternative salad dressing (peach, red bell pepper, and avocado… YUM!!!). It made me overjoyed to see my parents going crazy for my creative kitchen creations. I swear they are more proud of what I do in the kitchen than my university grades.
Is this it? Am I going to stick to veganism now?
God I wish I had a more solid answer. I’d like to think so. I mostly want to say yes, but part of me struggles with giving up the farm culture I was raised with.
I think I’m going to be 90% vegan: that when I go to restaurants I’ll order vegan whenever possible first and foremost; that when I want to bake or cook I’ll make it vegan if possible; that when I go to the grocery store I’ll try and find exclusively vegan products.
The other 10% of the time will have to be when I have no choice. When my parents cook (at least while I’m living at home) or in other situations when I have to eat or be hungry. I think that when I live at school again I’ll have a better chance of being vegan because I get 100% say in what I eat.
I had fun with this. I’ll keep posting recipes (vegan, raw, gluten free, or one of more of the above) in my Food tab. Check it out ya’ll. I hope you guys enjoyed this short series.
Peace, love, and vegan desserts,