On my first day of this veganaut adventure I published a post titled: A Journey of 1000 Miles Begins with a Single Banana. After years of Atkins style dieting, a fructose filled banana seemed like the most amazing magical breakfast food; that’s how I started my journey to find my inner herbivore.
The original decision was based almost exclusively on weight loss and better health. I knew it would be tough giving up meat, dairy, eggs and everything else animal related that I loved so much. However, with my health and personal longevity in the balance I knew it was worth it. Vegans might eat only rabbit food, I decided, but it was the path to the healthy life that I wanted.
The reality I discovered was much more intense. As it turns out vegans are freakin’ amazing cooks. It is almost like they have something to prove to the omnivore community and they are doing everything in their power to throw hella-deliciousness in their doubtful faces. I have learned to love cuisine that is Indian, Thai, Vietnamese, as well as food from completely different sections of the menu when lunching at Mexican and sushi joints. I’m afraid that now there are even more ways to let a love of food and a lack of portion control pack on the pounds (or Kilos for you global veganauts reading along).
Recently, I have not been living a plant based lifestyle- I’ve spent the summer as a sturdy veganaut with a few blemishes on my vegan report card; but that doesn’t mean I’ve been making healthy choices. Along with these bad choices, I’ve been leading an air-conditioned, sedentary lifestyle with occasional bouts of activity. There is a simple ‘energy in/ energy out’ equation which has been way out of whack in the last few months and my tight wardrobe proves it.
It should be said, however, that most of my old health problems are still gone. Gout, colitis, diverticulitis, acid reflux, and the rest are still at bay thanks to herbivore living. Blood pressure is more tied to weight, and while my numbers are still in the normal range I don’t want to jeopardize my progress in that area or loose any more ground on the weight loss battle…. so, exercise to the rescue!
As someone who is committed to being the best veganaut I can be- and as someone who loves the entire world of delicious foods that has opened up to me- I think it would be much easier to increase my exercise level than it would be to drastically decrease my intake of delicious sweet potato sushi and Mellow Mushroom calzones.
That’s why Shannon and I launched this personal challenge. We are literally starting on a journey of 1000 miles and if that isn’t exciting enough, we are challenging ourselves further. We plan to finish in under a year. *dramatic sound clip* Even at 5K a day the 1000 mile journey will take about a year. This may be laughable mileage for many of you marathon runners out there but it is a monumental change in routine for us… and a steady energy burn for many, many months to come.
Our first step in this challenge was a walking paced 5K earlier today. It’s not that we haven’t been walking all summer… okay, I’m afraid that’s exactly what it is. However, 5K-a-day isn’t a new concept in our household. Shannon and I had a month and a half at that pace late last year and it was very effective at burning up the food intake and the stored energy (stored energy sounds so much better than fat).
There will certainly be days where we don’t log any distance, and other days where we may triple the average. In either case we’ll be keeping close track of our thousand mile journey and keeping you up-to-date on how far along we are. We’ll be using the MapMyFitness app to track the progress and I’ll be sharing highlights of the journey with you good people here. If you’re interested in following a slow, lumbering journey, this is one to keep your eye on.
We don’t embark on this journey lightly. It is something we plan to start and finish within the year. If all goes well, as soon as we reach the 1000 mile mark, we’ll continue on with the goal of tackling that 10,000 mile benchmark… but for now, we’ll settle for a virtual stroll from Orlando to New York.
Until next time, keep your laces tight and your plates covered with vegetables.