Why I decided to “go vegan” Part 1

This will be a two part serious so as to break up the length of the post. For now, let’s start from the beginning.

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Potato wedges and a salad with a homemade cilantro-cashew cream dressing. All vegan.

Up until this year (2016) I’ve eaten the standard omnivore diet. When I was 19 I moved into my first apartment by myself and started buying organic produce, especially spinach and chicken. I stop buying Raisin Bran and started buying plain bran cereal and plan raisins separately to cut out the added sugars that coat the raisins in the traditional cereal. I also started buying only organic skim milk after trying a diet plan from Jillian Michaels and reading her thoughts on organic vs. traditional milk and the hormones in conventional milk.

3-4 years later I still only bought organic skim milk, organic/”free range” chicken and eggs, and bought bran cereal without raisins. I’ve always had an interest in trying new health fads because they give me something to focus on similar to a hobby and because I’ve dealt with body issues that stemmed from being compared to my cousins and negative comments that came from a boyfriend I was with for three years.

I’ve tried Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred which was a good starter when I was 19 and new to fitness and meal plans; counting macros on my own, and meal plans/fitness plans that I found on sites like Popsugar and Blogilates. I have even tried the 21 Day Fix Extreme, which I gave up after two weeks because it had me on 1,300 calories based on my activity level and height and that did not work AT ALL. I became super grumpy and super obsessed with food and what I could and could not eat. I felt tortured even though I was in a support group—tortured because I wanted to do well and finally have results but kept obsessing over my yellow containers and how little carbs I was allowed to eat.

It wasn’t until I tried Kayla’s BBG 1.0 that I found something I could stick to. I started it [the guides] in March 2015 after debating for months if I should spend the $160+ for the workout guides and nutrition plan. I made it through 4 weeks of pre-training and then 8 weeks of the guide before I stopped on July 4th because it was the holidays and I was also starting a new job two days later. After completing my first Tough Mudder run (which I HIGHLY recommend because it’s all about teamwork and not about time; plus there’s nothing uncomfortable about having strangers

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After my 1st Tough Mudder run with the flu.

hike you up over a 20 foot wall by your butt when you’re covered in mud) I decided to start BB 1.0 again and finally completed it two days before my 23rd birthday. To this day, Kayla’s BBG is the only program I’ve stuck to all the way through, but I couldn’t stick to the nutrition plan (at the time was only an omnivore diet; since though she’s released an app that has a meal plan for every kind of diet) which is why I think my progress wasn’t like the girls on her Instagram.

Like I said, I’ve always been interested in health fads because I’m always looking for a hobby. I never could get my mind into viewing them as a lifestyle change which is probably why I gave up so quickly.

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Week 6 of BBG 1.0. I was eating an omnivore diet, not following the meal plan, but getting in every workout in the guide.

My family’s health history on both sides is not the best by far. On my Dad’s side there is severe diabetes, heart disease, obesity, glaucoma, mental health issues, thyroid problems, and cancer. On my Mom’s side there is a lot of heart disease; stroke (my mom had one at 16); diabetes; brain, breast, uterine, kidney, and skin cancers;  arthritis; gout; hypertension; migraines (which I suffer from too); and finally mental health issues like depression and dementia.

Needless to say, all of those health issues are not anything that I want to deal with at any point in my lifetime but it wasn’t until my Dad’s mom (my Grandma, who meant a lot to me) was diagnosed last fall with Stage IV lung cancer that I finally realized I need to be in control of my body and my health.

To be continued in Part 2…

 

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