The 21-Day Challenge officially ended yesterday. As I mentioned in a previous post, I rocked the challenge up until the point I didn’t. :) However, as far as I am concerned, the challenge got me to where I wanted to go, namely, I’m back down to a weight where my clothes fit me comfortably, and my faith in the value of eating clean, whole, non-dairy, non-gluten foods has been restored. Tracking my intake for 3 weeks helped me realize how easy it is to eat too many carbs if you allow yourself to go off-plan even just once/day. To keep myself feeling good, I’m going to have to restrict the splurges to once or twice a week instead of once or twice a day. Tracking my intake has also made me more aware of eating for nutrition instead of convenience or tastiness. Overall, I consider the challenge a win! I think my coworkers would consider it a win too. They have both lost several pounds and are jazzed that they can eat without being bloated after every single meal.
I listened to Chris Kresser’s podcast recently, and he mentioned that he is working on a 14-day reset plan. I’m anxious to check that out. I think next time I’m ready for a clean-up, I will do that one. Fourteen days of perfection sounds quite a bit easier than 21! Plus I think it’s good to mix things up a bit to keep your body surprised.
My coworker had a celebratory supper last night, to commemorate the end of the challenge. She made 2 different kinds of brisket, stuffed mushrooms, and a cucumber, onion, and tomato salad. Her boyfriend made some rum punch that knocked me out after 2 small glasses. My contribution to the party (besides my hilarious wit and insightful observations) were these two dishes:
Sweet Potato Breakfast Cookies – These are SUPER tasty. However. Well, they turned out bright green for some reason. Yeah. Maybe it’s the sweet potatoes?? For the mix-ins I used 1 cup of shredded coconut, 1/2 cup of walnuts and 1/2 cup raisins. I didn’t have any pumpkin pie spice, so I mixed 1.5 t of cinnamon, .5 t of nutmeg, .25 t of cloves, and .5 t of ginger. They definitely LOOK a little weird, but they taste really good. Oh! And I didn’t have any almond butter, so I used sunbutter. You want to be careful to not overeat these, however. I put the recipe in PaleoTrack, and one cookie (I got 18 out of my batch) is 194 calories, with 12 grams of carbs.
Creamy Cucumber Dill Salad – This recipe was very simple, and it turned out very light and tasty. Tim suggested adding tomatoes, which I think is a great idea.
During the challenge I have been avoiding regular coffee. There are a few reasons for this. Tim has stopped drinking coffee because the caffeine freaks him out, so I was the only one drinking coffee in the morning. The coffee accouterments take up A LOT of room on the counter, which seems ridiculous for one person who drinks coffee. Also, I’m more sensitive to caffeine than I used to be, and I wasn’t sure how the caffeine was affecting my adrenals. So, I decided to take a break from it. I found out that while I love green tea, I really miss coffee. When we stayed with our relatives over Christmas, they had this Aeropress, which they LOVE. It’s very compact, easy-to-use, and it makes excellent coffee. So I ordered one from Amazon and picked up a bag of decaf beans from our favorite coffee place, Red Band.
I have to say, I LOVE this little thing. Tim and I have been drinking all sort of decaf and half-caf coffee all weekend. Today I made a decaf and mixed it with about 1/4 cup of hot coconut milk to make a paleo latte. It was incredibly delicious.
And….that’s about all my news. I have to go blow-dry my hair while it’s the perfect level of crispiness (fellow curly-haired folk will understand what I mean). Adios!