Week One Completed With Ease (and energy to spare)!

I can’t say that I was really nervous about stepping in to the lifestyle challenge of going gluten-free vegan for a month.  Secretly, I love doing research.  Like, I can spend HOURS trolling the internet and picking through books to find out what what color the belly of a baby Tangier in Costa Rica is.  hmmmm…I think I may have just given myself a project…ANYHOW.  As of today I am successfully through week one.

Everything I’ve made to date is really good.  I’m especially liking learning about the new foods and spices I get to work with.  Seems that a large percentage of North African, Indian and Thai food is gluten-free and vegan (or can be very easily modified into vegan).  I’ve already learned how to make three different kinds of curries, several variations of hummus and am slowly getting comfortable with using lemongrass and miso!

Here’s some images from this week’s adventures:

The fixen's for Rockin' Morrocan Stew.

Rockin' Morrocan Stew.

Rockin’ Morrocan Stew.

Traditional Chickpea Hummus with a Kick

Traditional Chickpea Hummus with a Kick

Banana, Almond, Coconut, Cocoa Breakfast Smoothie...so gooooood.

Banana, Almond, Coconut, Cocoa Breakfast Smoothie…so gooooood.

So far I have not made it into the gym for a “formal” workout.  Yes, I’m lazy and bad.  BUT, I have gone out for several 2+ mile dance-walks to Owl City and Carley Rae Jepson (no ribs on my music taste…it’s eclectic and I like it that way).  I also throughly enjoy spinning on my indoor bike trainer while watching “Once Upon A Time” or “Revenge” on my laptop.  Once I get back into the gym, I’ll step on a scale and see what’s happening.  For now, it’s all subjective.

Overall, I’d say I’m enjoying my experience.  No real cravings or feelings of loss.  Well, except for sushi.  I really REALLY miss sushi right now.  No hunger.  In fact, I am LESS hungry than usual.  My energy level is up and I am sleeping well.  I’d like to note that I am recovering from a solid month of illness.  So, who knows if my increased energy level is related to the food choices, or the fact that I can actually breathe through my nose again and am able to sleep with my mouth shut.  Oh, sweet divinity…

On the menu for this coming week is:

On a side note, I have some interesting challenges in the upcoming weeks.  For those of you who do not know, when I am not venturing into the world of the gluten-free vegan foodie, I am selling wine.  Yes, you read it correctly, I get paid to play dress up and drink (except for this month).  Overall it’s a pretty friggen cool job.  Here’s the thing, though.  All of next week, the owner of our small distribution company is going to be in town.  I have been tasked with the job of taking him out for niblets and entertainment. The following week, I am hosting a wine maker and have the same job of feeding him and hosting wine tastings and wine dinners.  Shit.  This means that for the next two weeks, I’m either going to have to call ahead to my accounts and request special items be made for me, suck it up and eat what’s on the menu or eat lots of nuts in the car and just sip seltzer water while I snack on the mixed green salad.  I’l keep everyone posted on what bridges I decide to cross and which ones I opt to avoid.  Could be an interesting experiment to see how my body feels after not having had something for a little while…or it could just make me sick.

As always, feel free to leave comments, suggestions, words of wisdom or (more importantly), words of silliness and mayhem.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laura
    Apr 08, 2013 @ 03:58:51

    glad to hear your first week went well. I was thinking about you and how you were coming along. Stay with it, you’ll thank yourself for the effort in the end 🙂 even if you decide to add some items back to your menu. The experience will be well worth it!


  2. Tracey Thomas
    Apr 08, 2013 @ 04:06:12

    Thanks for the update, and the recipes! The Golden Beet Hummus looks amazing…..

    I don;t know what foods you ate before your challenge began, but, I know if I cut all all the junk (processed, heavy food), I feel lighter, and better!!!

    Personally, I still think it’s okay to call ahead and tell them of your ‘plight’. That might be easier in some cases to give them fair warning. Or, you can always find something on the menu..

    I’m going to be laid up for the last half of April, and making meals will be a challenge for me. I see smoothies and salads as my staples, which I guess is what I do now anyway. Just afraid of well-wishing friends and neighbors dropping off sweets and heavy meals…

    Was thinking just a few days ago of getting a bike trainer! Are they $$$? Can you recommend a brand?

    Thanks again for sharing your journey. Sounds like you have a good handle on it, and having fun with it. I’m ok with doing the research, but lazy with the cooking….you’ve inspired me!

    And, you’ll be fine with this coming week…..You’ll be pleasantly surprised how accomodating they will be.



    • justjillian72
      Apr 08, 2013 @ 04:21:56

      Thanks for the feedback, Tracey! If you need help with anything at the end of the month, let me know. I can make recommendations for fast and easy foods, or would be happy to drop off something not “sweet and heavy”. My snack foods have been veggies with rice crackers and whatever hummus or dip I’ve made for the week (I’ve got LOADS of recipes for stuff like this if you’d like). Cooking is definitely a passion of mine, so that part is easy. It’s the finding time to cook that is the challenge.

      Thank YOU for your positive reinforcement and great energy!

      I’ll send you a message via Facebook about trainers. They can be really expensive, but worth it when you live in a region like our with 9-month winters…


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