freezer cooking – day 1

In retrospect, organizing, cooking, and packing for a vacation in another country for both our family unit and the grandparents, then coming home and immediately starting two college courses the minute I walked in our door…. might not have been one of my better ideas. Add to that the fact that the cupboards are were bare, the kids go back to school next week, and I’ve made a promise to myself to jump back on the fitness wagon as soon as humanly possible, and WELL, you can probably guess how harried and stressed I’m feeling right now. I know that in a couple weeks I’ll have found my stride once more — in my college classes, in my mom-life, in my fitness life, et al — but for  now I feel like I’m floundering.

So why in the name of Julia Child am I planning for an all-weekend cooking session???? I don’t know. Insanity, probably.

A few weeks ago, some friends and I decided to really commit to menu planning in the coming months. If I plan, I’m more likely to eat on plan and less likely to order out for pizza. Not one to ease into things, I had the brilliant idea to plan for, shop for, and cook for an entire month. In one weekend.

This weekend.

freezercooking1This evening, we did a mammoth shopping spree. $383 later, this is what my kitchen looked like. Not included in this panoramic view are the cleaning supplies I stocked up on.

It sounds crazy, I know. But I’m spurred on, imagining all the time I won’t be spending in the kitchen during September. A freezer full of home-cooked meals just warms the cockles of my heart. The perfectly portioned meals, with a crisp green salad on the side and fruit for dessert,  will allow me to naturally apply portion control measures and help me avoid the hell of having to resort to obsessive calorie counting . Not having to spend an hour or so in the kitchen every day means I’ll have that time to put to running and lifting again. At least in theory. We’ll see how reality compares to my idyllic vision.

The beans are soaking, my chopping list is made. I’ll let you know how tomorrow goes. I’m hoping to get the majority of the cooking done tomorrow and have just a couple baking items left to finish on Sunday. Wish me luck!

five days in

So, today is day five, and I’m beginning to adjust. Tidbits from this week:

  • I went shopping on Wednesday for some new workout gear. There was an old man hanging out in the local sporting goods store, meticulously folding women’s booty shorts. It kind of freaked me out.
  • I actually bought a pair of booty shorts. Not from the section he was folding. And no you cannot have photographic proof.
  • I was pleasantly surprised to myself in my new workout gear in the mirror. I don’t look as bad as I thought. Then I took a picture and the lighting definitely illuminated my problem areas. But we’ll forget that and just stick with the mirror image, shall we?
  • I feel really good. Aside from a nagging heading on day 3.
  • I went down a notch on my belt. Goodbye, bloat!
  • I had to go into the grocery store a day or two ago to get some fresh veg and meat. The smell of fresh baked croissants wafting from the bakery section hit me in the face like a sledgehammer. I am still amazed that I walked out of that store with only what I went in to buy.
  • I think the husband is subconsciously trying to sabotage me. He’s offered me cheese, bread, desserts…. Today he gave me a coffee with sugar. I NEVER drink coffee with sugar. Ever.
  • Apparently I have some latent guilt over eating animals again. Last night I dreamed that for penance I had to spend the afternoon inside a warehouse watching chickens be slaughtered.
  • I’m sore as hell from circuit training earlier in the week. And lucky me, as soon as I’m done writing, I get to do it all over again 🙂
  • I’m getting sick of plain chicken, but it’s been so long since I’ve cooked it I don’t know what to do with it. And I don’t have any regular cookbooks anymore. This weekend I need to scour the interwebs.

This weekend my goal is to find some new recipes to try, make a menu, and do as much bulk cooking as possible to make this next week easier. Any suggestions?

pulling a 180

So… due to operator error, I can no longer access my Blogger account. That’s okay, because Blogger kept defaulting to Dutch and my Dutch? Ik spreek geen Nederlands. I don’t speak Dutch. Besides, the old I’m good enough just the way I am vibe doesn’t mesh well with the I’m on a mission vibe I’m feeling now. 

Funny thing, motivation. It comes and goes. And when it’s gone, it’s long gone. And complacency sets in. Brooke and I have discussed that phenomenon many times. We’ve labeled it “I want to want to do it, but I don’t want to do it.” That’s where I was. I knew I needed to make a change, clean up some habits, confront some troublesome behaviors. I wanted to do all those things. But deep down, where it really counted, I couldn’t find the motivation to start. I didn’t want to want to do it. 

For some reason, I want to do it now. I’ve found my drive again. Of course it’s popped back into the picture at pretty much the worst possible time. Naturally. We’re leaving on vacation in two weeks. It’s the hottest part of the summer – 37 (98) degrees right now and it’s not even 11AM. It’s summer vacation and I either have my boys with me, or I’m running to and fro taking them to activities and home again. It’s finals week at school. Whatever. When motivation comes knocking, you don’t tell it to come back at a more convenient time.

I’ve been sitting here for ten minutes wondering how to start this next paragraph. I feel like I’m either going to wound someone to the core. Or be met with derision. Or that you all will be sitting there wisely nodding your head, saying it’s about bloody time. And in a way I feel like I’ve kind of failed. But I know none of you would actually do/be any of those things, so I don’t know why I hesitate. Anyway…

It’s complicated, but I think I’ve come to the conclusion that veganism doesn’t work for me. My fingernails are shredding away, peeling off in sheets, and have been for a long time now – a year, maybe more. I’m bloated and uncomfortable. It requires copious amounts of coffee to get me through a day. And the sugar cravings? Oh my word, the sugar cravings. I’m no expert (yet) but I think this is nutrition-related. But the thing is, I eat the healthiest vegan fare there is to eat. Too much of it, no doubt, but always high quality stuff. Lots of variety, lots of colour. I supplement the necessary things to supplement. But something is off, and I know it. 

After several weeks of reflection, I’ve decided to try adding meats and egss back into my diet. Not just out and about, as has been the case up until now, but at home as well. I’ve also decided to omit – at least temporarily – grains and see if that helps with the bloating and uncomfortableness. I’ve got my eye on the clean eating style promoted by Whole30. So consider these next two weeks my Whole15 – a trial run at this way of eating before taking off for our vacation. 

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Additionally, I’m going to be taking circuit training classes at my gym once the boys go back to school at the end of August! I already have a new friend (amazing how quickly you can make Facebook/Twitter friends, eh?) who will make sure I don’t back out just because I’m intimidated. There’s even a Cross Fit box available to me now, and I’m contemplating giving that a go. Someone hold me! Between now and then, I’m going to be doing some circuit training on my own – not that I have any illusion that I can somehow get myself into shape for Cross Fit. More like so I don’t sit on my ass for the next four weeks. The motivation is here now, I’m going to do what I can do now. Of course I’m going to continue with my walking, as I still have plans for some two and four day events in my future. But I’m feeling a little more badass than that. I love walking, but I also love sweating and working hard and being strong and proving to myself I am more than I think I am.

So, in summary: formerly vegan, now eating meat again; walker, ready to lift and sweat with the big boys. That’s quite a 180, wouldn’t you say?