The Vegan Diet Experiment: Days 1 and 2 Tuesday, May 12 2009 

Thank you for all the comments!  I’ve had a few requests for updates on my vegan diet experiment, so here goes:

Day One:

Breakfast: Starbucks grande bold (soy milk and one Splenda, which is what I usually get anyway).  Plain bagel, no topping.  (I know, not the healthiest thing, but we have them for free at work every Monday.)

Lunch: Two apples.

Dinner (eaten at two different seatings a few hours apart): One vegan burger.  Two grape leaves.  Half a cup of baby carrots.  Four tablespoons of horseradish hummus.

Snack: Five Triscuits and two tablespoons of horseradish hummus (LOVE that stuff!).

Exercise: Walked home from work (45 minutes).  Took a brisk 70-minute walk around the neighborhood.  Did some planks, push-ups and sit-ups.

Net calories: 612

Day Two:

Breakfast: Starbucks grande bold. (I know, I know.)

Lunch/Workday food: Two apples.  One soy yogurt.

Dinner/Evening food: Four pieces of vegetable sushi. One grape leaf. Two-thirds of a cup of baby carrots. Six tablespoons horseradish hummus.

Exercise: Walked home from work (45 minutes). Took a brisk walk around the neighborhood (50 minutes).  Did some planks, push-ups, sit-ups and squats. Did 20 minutes of weights for my arms.

Net calories: 426

I’m keeping track through the iPhone, which recommends a 916-calorie day to lose two pounds a week and a 1,166-calorie day to lose one and a half pounds a week.

I didn’t crave anything unhealthy today, though I was a bit tempted to grab free pizza at a rally that Menino had today.

A few of the challenges that lie ahead: avoiding the office candy.  The desk next to mine is the unofficial “candy desk,” so I spend a LOT of time hearing people unwrap Twixes and Peppermint Patties and my favorite, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.  And my coworkers LOVE their street meat (aka Herrera’s, the best burritos in Boston from a cart on Washington St.).

Also, I have a work lunch out on Thursday, but I know the menu of this place and how to adapt what they have.  And more work dinners out next week, if I’m still going vegan by then.

I’m also going to make an attempt to strictly limit the alcohol — just in time for company drinks on Wednesday and a friend’s birthday party at a bar that I love on Friday.

In other news, my foot is doing SO much better — the tendinitis has more or less cleared up and I’m out of the boot, but it turns out that the arches in my feet are flattening.  Wearing arch supports is helping a lot, but I still get pain now and then.

But I have found a new love — therapeutic massage.  After just one visit, I am doing SO much better in my back, my foot and all the other parts of me that have been in pain over the past few months.  I can’t wait to go back tomorrow!!  I’m a fan of chiropractry, but this is so much better.

I will keep you posted…the veganism is easy on the second day, but let’s see if it can last!

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Vegan for Vegas Monday, May 11 2009 

A month from today, my friends and I leave for Vegas.  We’re starting to make the preliminary reservations — dinner at N9NE, cabana at Tao Beach — but the most important part MUST start now.

Operation Vegas.

We came about the term by accident.  I think it was Jen who initially came up with it.  But Operation Vegas refers to any kind of diet and exercise plan to lose weight, look good and feel fabulous by the time we stroll into the Palazzo on June 11.

Since I was a vegetarian for nine months last year and lost a ton of weight that way, I’ve decided to be a vegetarian (more like a pescatarian) for the final month.  I decided to limit alcohol, too, since that’s the easiest way to knock off the pounds.

I’ve done all that before, though.  What would be more of a challenge?

Going vegan.

I’ve read Skinny Bitch.  Hell, I own Skinny Bitch (thanks, Lisa!).  I know there are SO many benefits to going vegan.  If you do it right, it’s one of the healthiest diets you can have.  (If you do it wrong, eating nothing but bread, of course you’re going to gain weight and feel awful.)

But it is SO DIFFICULT!  You won’t believe some of the things that have milk or eggs in them, like my favorite fake chicken patties and even some multi-grain baked goods.  You have to read the labels on EVERYTHING.

It’s also tough for me because I’m a microwave cook and a grazer.  I used to love cooking in college, but now having no time, money or desire to do so, I just don’t, ever.

I went to Trader Joe’s and bought tons of supplies: vegetables, horseradish hummus (SO SO GOOD!!), soy yogurt, vegan vegetable fried rice, Tofurkey Italian sausage, vegan burgers, etc.

Also, some products would be vegan except that they are made in facilities that use milk and eggs.  I am allowing myself those, because without them, there would be ALMOST NOTHING.

I’m not going to go vegan for the whole month.  I’m going to try it for a week, through Sunday, and then go back to pescatarianism until we get to Vegas.  And then I’ll reward myself with caviar, a filet and a lobster tail at N9NE.

Let’s see how this works.  I’ll let you know if I succeed or ultimately fail in a very big way.