I knew it would be challenging to move closer to 100% plant-based diet. But I was doing really well in November/December. And in my head, it seemed a safe assumption that January would flow along as well if not better. So wrong!
I got to thinking about what my challenges are to healthy eating. I wonder what other people’s challenges are and what you’ve come up with to get past the challenge. If you have come up with strategies let me hear them, please.
Time – I feel like there are not enough hours in the day. (I always feel like that to some extent.) But lately, the boys have not been sleeping well, they’ve had colds, and I had some health issues. Basically, I’m going to bed too late, I’m up 3-4 times with the boys, and I’m coughing and stuffed up. When the darn alarm goes off in the morning I tend to re-set it for later! Not hitting snooze, but actually rationalizing how I can get ready faster and sleep longer. This will strike those who know me as hysterical, because I am time challenged on a good day. For me to pack food for the day, I absolutely need time. So, I’ve got to get up earlier or pack my lunch the night before. That’s got to be new rule number one.
Planning – I’m not a great planner. Or rather, I am an okay planner when I focus on it and make time for it. Last week I sat and made a grocery list and a menu for the boys’ meals for the week. That felt extremely good. It didn’t help me too much because they don’t eat the meals that I do. But it certainly helped my Mom as she is the one who feeds them while I’m at work. (Notice I said last week, because I didn’t make a menu this week and it’s not been so smooth at home.)
I need to apply the planning model to my own menu and then make food ahead for the week. One meal a day can be salad but the other needs a little heat during January/February in New England, brrrr. New rule number 2 is I need to cook ahead for the week on Sunday. I need something I can warm when I get home from work or else I will eat whatever my Mom has made for the kids.
Social Pressure – I am trying to do something good for myself. But I also live among friends and family who are not trying to convert their diets. I find it can be really challenging to follow my own path when sharing a meal with others. If I could solve my time/planning issue maybe this wouldn’t bug me so much. But right now it’s just one more challenge in what has been a challenging month! What do you do if you’re eating at a friend’s house and they’re serving a delicious meal with something you would rather not eat? How do you dance around tricky social situations involving your preferred diet? I don’t have a solution to this one yet.
Favorite Sins – I don’t know how else to classify this last challenge! There are some things that are really hard for me to give up. Chocolate and wine! I will pat myself on the back for weaning off dairy. That is my third favorite sin but I have actually made in-roads on that one. I’ve been avoiding cheese, and I replaced my end-of-day scoop of light ice cream with a scoop of Almond Dream or Soy Dream. So there’s a positive step. I still hanker for a little chocolate especially at certain times of the month, and I have a glass of wine about 3-4 nights per week. I am weak! What are your food weaknesses?
As always, it’s a journey and I’ve got to keep on truckin’! Good luck with whatever you’re working on in your life. If you are working on a healthier diet or like me, trying to eat a plant-based diet please follow the blog and let me know how you’re doing. It can be really helpful to find a community of like-minded folks.