What I Ate Wednesday #125: After Effects of Vegan

My Valentine’s Day dinner was the first time going back to meat and dairy after 2 weeks of eating completely vegan. To be honest, I haven’t looked back. It wasn’t so much that I didn’t like my experience or could never fathom having a vegan meal again, but I just really enjoy pretty much all things meat and dairy. Egg whites in my oatmeal, crispy bits of roast chicken, a nice bowl of yogurt with bananas and cinnamon. YUM!

My experiences have adjusted the way I’ve been eating, however, and I’ve really been enjoying these changes. If you recall, Cyrus had me on a 70/15/15 diet focusing on 70% carbs coming from fruits and vegetables. I’ve been using MyFitnessPal to track my macros and am doing my best to try to hit that 70/15/15 breakdown but in reality have been getting closer to a 60/20/20 split; certainly not the end of the world! And aside from my oatmeal, I’ve been sticking with the fruits and veggies source of carbs.

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Breakfast]
Protein Oats Egg White Oatmeal Banana Peanut Butter

Protein Oats Egg White Oatmeal Mango Papaya Pineapple Peanut Butter
I seriously missed my oatmeal with melty nut butters! The basic idea of this breakfast has remained the same but I’ve added some extra fruit on top. I will typically mash up 1/2 of a banana into the oats and now slice up the other half on top. Or I grab some frozen mango/papaya/pineapple frozen mix when I’m out of bananas.

[Lunch]
Sweet Potato GTs Kombucha Multi Green Quinoa Beet Burger

Sweet Potato Tuna Fava Beans
Lunch has definitely seen the biggest change. I’ve swapped my daily big ass salad for a bunch of roasted sweet potatoes and some source of protein on the side like quinoa beet burgers, tuna, or shredded chicken.

Cyrus mentioned that lunch is the time to really load up on carbs in order to fuel the rest of your day, A salad, while obviously healthy, is typically a lower carb option full of ingredients that will essentially fill space in your stomach but not provide the source of energy that your body needs. I’m in loveee with sweet potatoes so this has not posed any issue for me at all.

[Dinner]
Half Baked Harvest Quinoa Crusted Chicken Tenders Roasted Potatoes Brussels Sprouts Sriracha BBQ Ketchup

Orange Sesame Chicken Breast Russet Potatoes Salad
Speaking of potatoes, we’ve basically been eating roasted russets every night with dinner. Nathan is certainly happy; variations on chicken and potatoes might be one of his favorite meals!

[Snacks]
Typical snacks throughout the day include bananas [sometimes up to 3 per day!], apples, and the occasional bar. I know bars aren’t always ideal and I definitely used to rely on them more than I do now. I didn’t want to have too much sugar, even the natural stuff, but since increasing my carbs, a banana is the perfect snack to take with me to work. And sometimes if I’m home, I’ll dip into a little nut butter too 😉

Any changes?
I was most curious to see if I’d notice any changes in my body, skin, weight, etc. by going vegan. In the first week, I lost 2 lbs and saw an increase in ab definition. I was also super crabby, low energy, having trouble getting through my workouts, and just generally exhausted by the end of the day. I wasn’t eating enough.

Cyrus explained to me that my RMR [Resting Metabolic Rate] is about 1600 calories per day and after adding in my workouts, active lifestyle, and simply the energy expended from my body digesting my food, I should be taking in about 3000 calories per day. I’m not sure I ever hit 3000 calories, but once I started eating more, the 2 lbs came back and the extra definition was lost. Was I bummed? A little. But at the same time, I actually had my energy back!

I plan on keeping up the increase in carbs, mostly because I love sweet potatoes and bananas. In terms of noticeable physical changes, I really don’t see a difference and I happen to be much happier not limiting myself in my diet. If I want a vegan meal, great! I’ll have one. If I want a huge cheesesteak [Nathan got one while I was eating vegan and said it was the best of his life], I’ll eat a huge cheesesteak! I just enjoy food and the experiences I have with Nathan trying new things entirely too much to give it up.

It was a great experiment and I’m glad I did it. I think it’s important for me to experience different diets, workouts, etc. to be able to speak to it if someone asks. I’m up for a challenge and I’d try another if the opportunity presents itself.

Food for Thought

What’s the most extreme change in diet you’ve tried before?

What I Ate Wednesday #123: Vegan. Week 2.

Sunday I had a really serious conversation with my nutritionist, Cyrus. As you may recall, he has me experimenting with a high-carb [70% carb, 15% fat, 15% protein], vegan diet for 14 days. At the start of week 2, I met with him and told him my main concern—I’m not eating the right foods for lunch to hold me over; especially when I’m out of the house all day at work. I just ended up being completely exhausted by late afternoon. I’m just not packing enough. His solution? Eat more. And eat starchy! Lose the greens at lunch; they’re just taking up valuable real estate in my stomach that I need for energizing carbs.

This past week, I’ve made a few adjustments to my meals, in particular, eating more. Lots more! Yesterday was the big test; I was working 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. with just two 1-hour breaks in between hitting all 3 jobs. I knew it was important to pack a lot and really take into account what Cyrus had to say. And let me tell you, I found a way to just. keep. eating.

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Breakfast]
I’ve tried a couple breakfasts from Cyrus’ plan but this one was my staple.
Bananas Blueberries Papaya Cinnamon Chia Seeds

  • 2 bananas
  • 1/2 papaya
  • 1 mango OR a bunch of blueberries
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds + 2 tbsp hemp protein soaked 10+ mins in 1/2 cup almond milk

Adding in the protein powder definitely helped keep me full longer. And you’re welcome for snapping a picture pre-chia/protein mix.

[Morning Snack]
Garbanzo Beans Chickpeas
I went to barre after training my first client, but unfortunately could only stay for 30 minutes before heading onto my next job. That said, it was a killer 30 minutes! and I was famished. Chick peas. Because apparently that’s a normal snack? But clearly not enough to hold me over for too long.. Cashew Cookie Larabar to the rescue!
Cashew Cookie Larabar
Larabars have been great because they’re just fruit and nuts. No extra sweeteners, grains, etc.

[Lunch]
Sweet Potato
Admittedly, I’m still getting used to such a high starchy carb load, but eating a ton of sweet potatoes? I can’t really complain.. Seriously. Just straight roasted sweet potatoes. Twas delicious.

[Afternoon Snack……sssss]
Gingerbread Larabar
I had a hell of a time staying full. Must have been all of my running around! In between job 2 and 3, I snacked on an apple with 1 tbsp peanut butter. A couple hours later, my very last Gingerbread Larabar made an appearance. And finally, a blood orange. I told you, I was hungry!

[Dinner]
Collards Kale Spinach Mushrooms Lentils
A long day required an easy dinner. Same as the night before—mushrooms and lentils with mustard dressing over mixed greens.

[Evening Snack]
I must’ve really worked up an appetite because even after all of that, my stomach was still growling before bed. I reached for a banana.. might as well end the day in a similar fashion to how it started!

Damn. That’s a lot of carbs! Haha they are quite tasty, though, so it’s hard to argue. Just a few days left to finish off my 2 week experiment!

Food for Thought

Which meal would be your favorite?
Have you ever considered or tried a high carb diet?

A Restful Week[end] & Gingerbread Molasses Oatmeal

Happy New Year week! I don’t know about you, but I have some big plans for this week.

Last week I got sick and it knocked me on my butt for longer than I had expected. It pretty much hit Monday night and I was out of commission for a few days; though that didn’t stop my Christmas plans! It did, however, stop me from hitting the gym. I went Monday after work, but haven’t been back since. I know I needed to rest and not push my body; I know I needed to just let whatever was in my system play out and not stress about getting in a workout. And I’m sure my body was craving a full week of rest.. the last time I took this long off, it was for the honeymoon! So we took time off and we relaxed. A lot.

We made a roaring fire!
Fire Place TV

We baked some get-better quick chocolate chip cookies [I swear, they worked!] with a side of Goose Island Bourbon County Stout and Ratatouille.. the movie, not the dish 😉
Goose Island Bourbon County Stout NY Times Chocolate Chip Cookies Pixar Ratatouille

We had a quiet Saturday and a nice lunch out.
Southie Ahi Tuna Salad

And we made a special Sunday morning trip for fresh bread and breakfast. [I need to make some 5-grain porridge!]
Bartavella Cafe 5 Grain Sweet Porridge Coffee

I have thoroughly enjoyed all of my rest and relaxation. There was something just so nice about not having to set my alarm each night to make sure I get in my workout before our day’s plans. That said, it’s time to get back on track. But I’m lacking some serious motivation. I have my workout plan in place for the week and my big goal for the week with my diet is to chillax on the extra snacking. I think once I get back into the gym for the first time, I’ll get back into the swing of things, but I’m also hoping I can count on some extra push from all of you! Commit to 30 minutes of fitness each day this week with me, will ya? Let’s start off 2015 on the right foot!

And start your day off on the right foot too; don’t forget to eat breakfast everyday. Need a new oatmeal recipe? This one uses my favorite flavors of the season and is packed with protein and fiber.

Gingerbread Molasses Oatmeal

Serves 1
Gingerbread Molasses Oatmeal | Barr & Table

Ingredients
– 1/2 banana; mashed
– 1/3 cup almond milk [I love Califia Farms Coconut Almond Milk]
– 1/3 cup water
– 1 tsp ground cinnamon
– 1/4 tsp ground ginger
– 1/8 tsp ground allspice
– 1 tsp blackstrap molasses
– 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
– 5 egg whites

Direction
Place a small pot over medium high heat and add the mashed banana, almond milk, water, and spices. Bring to a boil, stir in the oats, and lower the heat to medium low. Allow the oats to cook for a few minutes until they begin to thicken up. Add the egg whites and stir continuously so the whites to set.

When the oats setup to the thickness that you like, about another 5-7 minutes, remove from heat and scoop into a bowl. Top with your favorite toppings and enjoy! I topped mine with a sprinkle of sea salt, golden raisins, candied ginger, and coconut flakes.

Nutritional Information
Per bowl of oatmeal without toppings

278 Calories / 4g Fat / 42g Carbs / 9g Fiber / 13g Sugar / 22g Protein

Looking for some more #MeatlessMonday inspiration? Check out Tina’s weekly link up!

Don’t forget a successful week also comes from a bit of planning. I like to have a set plan for our dinners, not only to know what’s on the menu each night, but it also helps to save money at the store so we don’t just pick up random items. We also have a bunch of leftovers from last week/weekend cooking so we’ll be taking full advantage of that this week too!

Weekly Meal Plan

SundayMoroccan chicken stew with rice pilaf [Nathan] & zucchini noodles [me]
Monday – Leftovers
TuesdayTurkey bolognese with zucchini noodles
Wednesday – NYE!
Thursday – Leftovers
Friday – Out!
Saturday – Leftovers

Alrighty, friends. Let’s do this thing! I’ll be posting my workings on Instagram all week.. feel free to check up on me and call me out if I miss my 30 minutes 😉

Sprint 2 the Table

Food for Thought

How do you keep yourself accountable?
Will you be joining me to hit 30 minutes of activity everyday this week?