Challenge No. 2 – No Sweets for 30 days
Began: 9th July 2017
Ended: 7th August 2017
Hurdles encountered: Week away on holiday
This feels like it was a rather mashed up challenge with going away for a week in the middle of it. However, although I’ve not been perfect I have now completed the challenge.
Aside from the week where I only ate chocolate three evenings I didn’t do too badly. Apart from two failings (as I see them because they are).
One was when I ended up buying a bag of Grasmere’s world renowned ginger biscuits and I began to have a biscuit every afternoon with a cup of tea without even thinking about it. When I say biscuit, they are not small! I actually got to day four before I suddenly realised I was no longer on holiday! So the three plus the four took me to the seven I’d given myself leniency for.
The other issue came after we had a water leak in our kitchen. The plumber came on a Saturday and was busy fixing the leak quite late into the evening. I was getting so fed up mid afternoon by holes being made in ceilings, and hungry that because I couldn’t get into the kitchen to grab a snack I went into the lounge instead and polished off the remaining chocolate from the holiday stash!
Do I feel any different from cutting down on the sweets at all? Short answer is no.
Have I lost any weight. No.
By removing sweets and sweet like food at weeks at a time I didn’t lose weight, even with an added reduction of alcohol consumption. That above all else is really frustrating but it also tells me that cutting anything out needs to happen over a longer period of time to enable my body to adjust to the change.
Changing the habit of using chocolate as a go-to when I’m really craving it has been the biggest change for me this last month. Rather than buying chocolate I find myself buying a lot more fruit. Anytime I even think about chocolate I grab either an apple of a nectarine. At work, I make sure to take at least two pieces of fruit with me so I can still have the argument in my head to just go and get a chocolate bar but actually, that wouldn’t be a great idea because sat in front of me is an apple. I can’t talk myself out of that answer very easily. So far it’s worked.
Fruit as a chocolate substitute has worked and eating the fruit has actually made me feel better. It’s just ensuring that I remember to buy enough fruit on a weekly basis. It takes a little planning to ensure I not only get enough but a variety (so I don’t get bored), but it does seem to be working.
Challenge No.3 – No processed food
This is going to be tricky.
First of all, I need a list to guide me. So this is my processed list of food I shall be avoiding for the next 30 days:
- Shop bought dips
- Sweets of any description (inc biscuits)
- Fizzy drinks
- Breakfast cereal
- Fruit juice
Food I’m not cutting out:
- Almond milk
- Bread (white and brown)
- Olive oil
- Soya products
Things I don’t eat anymore (so don’t need to cut out):
- Lunch meats
- Frozen meals
Out of the top list, crisps and mayonnaise will be the hardest to quit. My weekends currently consist of crisps and dip and a film. So I’ll need to exchange this feel good activity with something more healthy. Also, I slather my potatoes in mayo which I recently substituted for butter. Neither are healthy or plant-based. I’m going to have to drop mayo at some point but it’s trying to find a substitute (no, not the vegan ones as they don’t taste good). Also, I’ve recently discovered tuna and mayo sandwiches which I fell in love with quite quickly. Again, not an ideal habit to maintain for a lunch (although I’d argue still better than ham), so I need to look for a decent alternative.
This is certainly going to be an interesting 30 days! For this challenge I need to prepare so I’m not starting until Saturday, once the weekly shop is completed.
Challenge No. 3 – No Processed foods for 30 days
Begin: 19th August 2017
Ended: 17th September 2017