Why I’m taking part in Veganuary

I know, I’m not generally someone who joins in with these month-long pledges to give something up. But this year is different.

I love food. I am meat eater. I’ve butchered meat. I cook with offal. Cheese is awesome. I don’t think it’s wrong to eat meat, nor do I believe that anyone should be judged for their food choices. However, I do think that we should be more aware of where our food comes from and I also think that perhaps we should make an effort to eat a little less meat, not just for health reasons, but also for the environment.

 

burrito bowl

Supposed to be a burrito bowl, but I opened the wrong beans!

 

I also eat too much. I’ve not been running or exercising much due to my injury and I’ve done a lot of sitting about feeling sorry for myself. Add in mince pies, trips, food festivals, it became inevitable that I would put on weight. I knew I had put on some weight. On January 1st, I weighed myself and realised I’d put on over a stone. Not a disaster, but I’m someone who wants to be a stone lighter, not a stone heavier. I’ve got a bit fat. It’s easy to see how it happens and yet it’s so simple. Eat less, move more generally means weight loss. Not moving, eating more, often leads to weight gain. I thought I’d put on a few pounds, but putting on what I had was a bit of a nasty surprise. At least I know why my bras are no longer fitting me and it isn’t a random boob growth spurt…

Don’t get me wrong, I preach being body confident. You deserve to feel confident, attractive, and good about yourself, whatever your size. It is not for anyone else to judge. This is for me.

So Veganuary seemed like a good opportunity to re-evaluate my eating habits, while learning more about respecting where food comes from. At the moment, I’m not planning to follow a vegan diet indefinitely, but I’m learning about my body and realising that I was eating too much meat and cheese.

 

spinach and chickpea curry

Spinach and chickpea curry is so quick and easy!

 

I’m now ten days in and I’ve lost 5lb in weight. I’m not missing meat or dairy, nor am I finding it particularly difficult to create meals. I’m making an effort to drink more water and my skin is getting clearer. My period started this week and while this could just be coincidence, I only had a day of cramps, compared to my usual week of lethargy and being doubled over. In short, after ten days, I feel pretty damn good.

 

Helen and Rose

 

In terms of weight loss, I expect this to slow down, but as I sit here typing, I plan to start Couch to 5k again, to try to build up the strength in my ankle. There’s a half marathon at the end of the year that I desperately want to do, but only if I can do it injury free. I’m also religiously logging my calories on MyFitnessPal. This may sound particular, but I’m finding it useful to keep myself on track at the moment and it’s working.

So there we go. They may not be the most moral reasons for taking part in Veganuary but they are my reasons and I’m loving it so far. Hit me up with your favourite recipes – I made this banana loaf yesterday with added chocolate chips and it was divine. Well, what can I say, I will ALWAYS love cake…

 

banana bread

Mmmm, banana bread…

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