Tuesday, July 9, 2013

July Clean Eating (personal) Challenge

Now that all the Fourth of July hoopla has come and gone (including much delicious food and desserts), it seems like a good time to rein things in a little bit and stop eating all the food that ever fed. In particular, all the yummy sweets and treats which are my nemesis.

In the big picture, I think I eat pretty clean. I would say about 90-95% of my weekday eating (by volume, not by calories, unfortunately) is good, healthy food. On the weekends the less spectacular foods do tend to increase, but that's not too bad considering that I do my long runs on the weekend and can absorb a few more calories.

Sometimes I fear, though, that my 5-10% of treats just undoes all the good stuff the rest of the time. Like a handful of jelly beans or some sample chunks of garlic French bread from the bakery at QFC will send my body into a frenzy of inflammation and fat storage. (This is all in my head, not based on any real scientific theories or anything!)

I also suspect (probably realistically) that these endless extras are coming between me and my happy weight which is 5-10 pounds away (not to be confused with my elusive goal weight, another 10 pounds further away).

So here's my plan. Through the end of July (perhaps longer, once I establish the habits), on weekdays I am going to stick with whole foods, lots of vegetables and some fruit, healthy proteins (emphasis on salmon and other fish), plain yogurt, some fats such as avocado, olive oil, and possibly light butter or light mayo on occasion (less whole but I'm allowing it), and modest amounts of whole grains.

I am going to limit foods with added sugar (though not scrutinize the ingredients of non-sweet foods too intensely), and eschew candy, cookies, cake, pie, ice cream...all the good stuff. I really don't eat a lot of sweets but I find it hard to resist office treats (when they are available) or bakery samples. And I'm going to avoid white carbs.

I don't drink sweet drinks or alcohol, so that's not a problem, and I've already eliminated diet pop except as a treat on the weekends, so no changes needed there. I drink a lot of Starbucks passion tea (unsweetened), and it would probably be good to drink more water. That will probably be easier now that the weather is warm.

I am not going to stop using cream in my (decaf) coffee. I am not going to stop using a little bit of Splenda (in coffee) and stevia (TruLemonade in my iced tea).

For my after work snack I am going to emphasize protein rather than carbs (e.g. boiled shrimp rather than a pocket thin with almond butter). For now I am going to keep having a Clif Z bar before I work out in the morning (convenience rules), but I may boil some eggs and go that route instead, eventually. For now, I am going to top snacking on almond butter unless it is on an English muffin for a pre-run breakfast.

I would kind of like to go all gangbusters on the weekend too, but it is harder because I spend time with Rod and the food, while generally healthy, tends to be less spartan than my personal choices. Since I'm not on some kind of serious diet, I don't really want to impose my requirements on him too brutally. Also, I do run long mileage on weekends, so I think I need more calories to fuel my runs anyway.

It's about 4:45 now, and I am feeling pretty hungry, so I'll be heading to QFC for some boiled shrimp. Dinner tonight is the same as last night (and already prepped)--baked salmon, Apple Cowboy Slaw made with broccoli slaw and light mayo, and half an ear of corn. I may throw on some asparagus too, as I spent good money on it and need to eat it before it gets old!

In running news, I am working on a recap from Seattle Rock 'n' Roll a few weeks back. Last weekend I ended up doing two long runs, 11 miles on Saturday and 8 on Sunday. That made five running days that week so my mileage was over 40 even though 11 miles was my longest. This morning I only managed 6.5 miles as I couldn't get myself out of bed early enough. L.A.Z.Y. It's nice and really light so early, I wish I had the fortitude to take advantage of it! Maybe Thursday....

Here is the pineapple upside down cake I made on Saturday, which contributed to my ban on sweets.

1 comment:

Renee said...

Good luck with your clean eating! I can't join you, as I am going back to the Midwest for 2.5 weeks. I will allow myself to indulge in the fantastic cooking and delicious food offered, while celebrating two weddings. Cheers!