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So, what are you?

“So what do you eat?”

This is my favorite question that people ask. I love talking about what I eat. I love talking about recipes. I love sharing nutritional information. I just really love food. And talking.

I do not however, love talking about my dietary label. More often than not when I discuss food with others, they want to know my label. They want to know ‘what’ I am.

This is a tough question to answer. I’m not a huge fan of labels, as there can be a lot of grey area with them. But I’ll do my best to explain the label I choose for myself.  Here it goes…

I don’t cook with animal products, but occasionally  I add dairy to my hubby’s dish if he’s asked for it. I cook most nights, but we love going out to dinner for date night on Fridays. And let’s be real, the last thing I want to do on a Friday night is cook! When I order, I avoid dairy and eggs and absolutely won’t order meat. Sometimes ordering a meal that may have been prepared with minuscule amounts of dairy and/or eggs is unavoidable. The vegetarian restaurant scene isn’t exactly a huge thing in our small town!

So how do I label myself?

For simplicity’s sake, yes, I call myself vegan. But in everyday real life, I’m just someone who eats consciously.

When I eat, I’m conscious of my health. How will the food I choose to consume impact my health (and the health of my family)?

When I eat, I’m conscious of the health of our planet. How will the food I choose to purchase impact the health of the planet we call home?

When I eat, I’m conscious of the lives of others. How will the food I choose to put in my mouth impact the lives of other animals (including other humans)?

Am I a perfect vegan? No. Absolutely not. But I’m working damn hard to be the best vegan I can be each and every day. And if I can influence one other person to eat a  few more veggies and less animal products in the process, that is enough for me.

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One week post show update

One week post show. I have been on such a high this week getting to indulge in things I haven’t indulged in for weeks. I’ve been getting creative with my cooking, feeling stronger in the gym, and taste-testing far too many of the dairy free Ben and Jerry’s flavors.

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Did I mention date night has made a comeback?! Kyle and I so enjoyed being able to go out for dinner and craft beers to one of our favorite local places last night (it isn’t exactly macro friendly, but has some plant-based options).

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Indulging is fun, but when I woke up this morning, I definitely felt like I have been going a bit overboard for a week. I didn’t have a set plan for a reverse diet and I am totally okay with that. I knew I’d give myself a week to go nuts and enjoy so many of the things I’ve been missing. But now, it’s time to get serious about my health and fitness goals again!

During this prep, I was following macros with high protein content. Up until the last month, carbs were high enough that I could still be somewhat creative with my cooking and enjoy more ‘recipes’ as opposed to bro-style foods (i.e., tofu and veggies). I knew that for where I was at and how much I still need to learn about the way my body reacts to food and cardio during prep, that following higher protein would yield the results I sought . But I also made a conscious decision to try to transition to more of a starch-based diet with less protein and fat than I’d previously been eating. For me, eating plant-based is all about health. From what I’ve read, high protein, even from plant sources, can still be damaging to my health.

So here it goes. Getting focused on eating more starchy whole foods with a lower fat and protein content. I’m interested to find out what effect it will have on my training and aesthetics.