On Beginning A Journey.
Something tragic happened to me last night, guys.
I had one of those workdays yesterday. You know, the kind where you end up just laughing slightly hysterically at your desk because you are in the middle of six projects, all on various looming deadlines, the emails are piling up in your inbox, you realize that you might be a little TOO caffeinated because you haven’t blinked in about 45 minutes, and all you want to do is throw some weight around and the weights are TEN FEET from your desk, but you forgot to bring workout clothes (yes, I forgot to bring workout clothes to the gym. Where I work. Every day. Facepalm.) – yeah, it was that kind of day. I shut my laptop at 8pm to head home, and all I could think about was the pulled pork in my crockpot. Luscious, flavorful, pastured (read: expensive) pulled pork. I hadn’t eaten since 11am. I was like those old Mickey Mouse cartoons where he smells something in the kitchen and floats through the air, pulled by the scent.
I walked to the kitchen and opened my crockpot* and……my pork shoulder was burned. BURNED TO A CRISP. This was beyond “seared” or “caramelized” – it was completely inedible.
I’m not proud to admit this, but whatever, it was the straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back. I cried. Actual tears. Heaving sobs over burned meat. The entire day had dumped a load of crap on me, and I’d done everything right, everything that I tell everyone else to do. I’d prepped a big batch of food, knowing I wouldn’t get home til late. I had sweet potatoes and greens to add to said batch of protein. I’d made it through the day like a champion!
So, I grieved. But what I did not do was a) order wings, which have been a go to dinner (hey! they’re
probably gluten free!) for me in the past more times than I care to admit b) sit on the couch with the jar of Sunbutter and a spoon and pretend I wasn’t really that hungry ANYWAY c) go to the corner store and get a pint of ice cream. Instead, while still doing that unattractive sniffle-heave-sniffle thing, I found a pound of grassfed ground beef in the fridge, along with a jar of salsa and half a packet of Trader Joe’s taco seasoning. I found the container of liver pate my husband and I made the night before and I found a cucumber. I found an avocado. I put all the things together. And it was good.
*My crockpot is usually my homie. I have no idea why this happened. I stand by my assertion that it is ALMOST impossible to ruin something in the crockpot. I’ve probably cooked 200 meals in it and I’ve ruined one. Fear not, new cooks. It’s still the up there with the Greatest Kitchen Implements You Can Own.
I say this because I’m finishing up my own Whole30, which is essentially another way of framing the BCCC. It’s not the first time I’ve done it, but it’s the first time I’ve experienced so many abiding realizations about my relationship with various foods. I’m going to avoid writing a novel here, but here are some of my thoughts. Remember, this is not necessarily what I think YOU should do or what YOU should be feeling as you set out on this journey.
1. I ate a lot of fruit over the past month – both fresh and dried – more than I’d been eating prior. In particular, dates are extremely problematic for me. I can eat a LOT of dates in one sitting (and for the record, 1 DATE contains 16 GRAMS of sugar. Oy.) Coincidentally, my extreme I’d-kidnap-your-kid-for-chocolate sugar cravings last until ummm…yesterday (okay, today. Today I thought about the chocolate bar in the fridge).
2. Speaking of my fridge, yeah. I can’t keep off-plan stuff there. A few things that popped up during the month of August (like birthday cake icing and fudge, specifically) I figured – oh, I’ll just freeze them and enjoy them after this is over! TERRIBLE IDEA. I have fixated on them multiple times per week. It’s made me crazy. They’re not worth it.
3. I really missed butter a lot for about three weeks.
4. I felt kind of sluggish and cranky and moody for about three weeks.
5. Then, I got some weird intestinal business going on for 2 straight days in which everything I ate went (ahem) right through me. But after that, I felt FANTASTIC and energetic. Not sure what was going on there.
6. When I discovered that Aki would make sushi for me without rice, I got unreasonably happy, because being able to go to a restaurant without having to ask a million questions about “what’s this cooked in” made me feel like I was part of the world again. And the only thing that sounded good to me on day 2 of my “situation” above was sushi.
7. I really didn’t train with any sort of consistency during this, just did stuff here and there.
8. I weighed 164.0 on Day 1. This morning I weighed 157. I’ve dipped as low as 155.4. My goal is to walk around comfortably in the 69kg weight class so I can go back to competing in Oly, and now I’m pretty close to that. Huh.
9. I found it very easy to stick to The Plan on my birthday, because my husband is awesome and made me all my favorite good foods at home. I found it very, very VERY difficult to stick to The Plan when I was in the Poconos over Labor Day weekend. There was a lot of ziti, a lot of beer/wine and a LOT of smores being made. I ate a lot of roast beef that I’d brought with me. Oh well.
10. I started this thing where I’m drinking coffee til REALLY late in the day (for me). No bueno.
11. For the first time I’m NOT counting down the minutes til 12:01 AM tonight when I can dive into a bowl of icing. I’ll probably have some wine this weekend when I visit my grandparents, I may treat myself to a Capogiro sorbet and bid farewell to summer, but that’s about it. I’m ready to take what I’ve learned and figure out how I can make it sustainable.
My Goals for the September BCCC
1. Train consistently and eat to support that.
2. See how I feel eating less fruit. Going to get my carbs from squashes/tubers/and a little white rice.
3. Continue avoiding sugar. See if it’s sustainable for me to say “I don’t keep sugary treats in the house, but I’ll have a treat if I go out to a restaurant.” (Which shouldn’t happen much anyway over the next month for me financially.)
4. See above re: cheese. Also wine.
5. I will add pastured butter back in as a cooking fat because I know it doesn’t bother me and it’s extremely nutrient dense.
6. MORE BROTH and fermented stuff, always.
7. Less coffee. I’m definitely exploring the idea of giving it up entirely. By Day 1 of the BCCC I’ll know if I’m ready for that.
8. I am continually trying to eat more mindfully. I have a nasty habit of skipping breakfast or eating at my desk or in front of the tv (full disclosure, I’m not perfect!)
SO – with all that said, post to comments! What are your hopes and dreams for the BCCC? Have you made a PLAN? Have you set a goal yet? Are you terrified? We want to hear it! September 16th is DAY ONE – so take the next few days to wrap your head around everything!
“Respect your dinner; idolize it, enjoy it properly. You will be by many hours in the week, many weeks in the years, and many years in your life the happier if you do.” – William Makepeace Thackeray