Full disclosure: I’m not much of a meat eater. I do love Italian smoked and cured meats. Especially in sandwich form. But honestly, I could easily do without. The reason I’ve never committed myself to a vegetarian lifestyle is because, well, I never wanted to limit myself or inconvenience anyone.
I don’t ever cook meat for myself, and I won’t go out of my way to order it when I’m out. However, I never wanted to be the person saying ‘No we can’t go out for burgers.’ or ‘Sorry, I can’t eat any of the chicken you prepared.’ Honestly, I don’t even really like chicken, but if someone has gone through the effort of cooking it, of course I’m going to eat it. And sure, there are times when I think “hmm I really would like a carnitas burrito“. I mean, I do enjoy meat from time to time, but it isn’t and has never been the be all end all for me.
Dairy is something else entirely. I don’t drink milk, but I love yogurt, ice cream, and cheese. This year, though, I’ve unintentionally reduced my dairy consumption simply because quality products are hard to come by.
I’ve been dealing with a lot of health issues this year, and I’m finally starting to feel strong again. At first, walking was a struggle. Then I started to introduce gentle cardio. Last month, I finally began running again, and I’m really pleased. I’m currently comfortable with running 2-3 miles each time. Is it where I thought I would be a year ago? No, but life throws hurdles at us and we overcome them and adjust.
So, in an effort to revamp my life and give myself a little health boost, I’m participating in an October Vegan Challenge with some friends. That means for the whole month I will be eating animal product free foods. Moreover, I will be trying to cook for myself creatively and healthfully.
As I’ve said before, I tend to eat how I feel. If I feel sick, I will eat poorly. I’m hoping that by improving my skills at cooking healthfully and quickly, I won’t ever feel the need to rely on pretzels and candy bars again when I’m ‘too sick’ to cook.
If this challenge is something that interests you, feel free to join along for the whole month, a week, or a day. This challenge is about being cruelty free towards animals and also nourishing and revitalizing for the body. I’m really excited about it.