Vegan Week, Day 2

I have made it through another successful day as a vegan! David and I did our own thing for most of the day, as we both had to be somewhat productive on our day off from school. I was able to go to coffee this morning with my roommates, where I tried my first ever vanilla soy latte. It was actually pretty delicious, so we know I won’t be wasting away from a caffeine deficiency this week. I was pretty apprehensive of the soy juice (it’s not milk) portion of the drink, but it all ended okay.

 

After coffee, I decided it was time to attempt a workout. I was a little concerned about this, since I hadn’t had my normal protein staples in my diet, but I headed to the gym anyways. Thankfully for myself and the other people at the gym the workout went great. I made it through an hour of cardio and some strength training without any adverse effects!

 

For lunch, I had a vegetable medley and some Wheat Thins, which I learned today are vegan! It was tasty, but lacking in protein, so I had a couple of almonds. I did witness one of my lovely roommates gnawing on a leftover rib in the kitchen. She didn’t flaunt it, but I smelt it’s sweet, bar-b-quey goodness. I didn’t feel challenged at all today until I smelled that wonderful leftover McClintock’s. I remained strong though and stuck to the vegetables!

 

For dinner, David and I did a bit of improvising. We opened up his fridge and just pulled out what looked good. The night’s menu ended up consisting of potato patties, salsa, black beans and my go to vegetable dish of zucchini, yellow squash, fresh garlic and onion, all sprinkled with a little cajun seasoning (I’ve had a variation of the zucchini sauté three times already. It’s time to brach out I think). We were quite pleased with ourselves- it was vegan, it was delicious, and we came up with it all on our own! For pictures of the meal, check out David’s blog (www.agrilifestyle.blogspot.com).

 

Today’s Food Log

Breakfast

Vanilla Soy Latte

almonds

 

Lunch

zucchini, yellow squash, broccoli, tomato, onion and garlic

Wheat Thins

 

Dinner

Potato patties with salt, pepper, basil and Cajun seasoning

zucchini, yellow squash, tomato, garlic and onion with Cajun seasoning

black beans

salsa

 

Dessert

Fresh pineapple

 

All in all, it was a solid day. Tomorrow, both David and I will have our first day at school since the vegan week started. We expect to have a few new challenges, seeing as our magazine office is currently stocked with Costco cookies, rum cake and pretzel m&ms, all of which just happen to be similar to kryptonite to David and I. Thankfully, we have the success of the last two days to keep us motivated and enthusiastic!

Thank you to all our supporters for following our progress and sharing encouragement and ideas. Without you guys, David and I would be having a much harder time!

 

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Tonight, I Ate Soy Chicken….

Yes, I ate soy chicken, and it was actually kind of good. I mean,  it was cooked in a special Thai sauce, but still. I ate soy chicken.

 

I sent a text message to my brother to tell him I ate soy chicken and his only response was, “Who are you?” I kinda had to ask myself that same question when I realized I liked it.

 

After David and I completed our vegan shopping adventure, I came home to find my lovely roommates baking oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, which just so happen to be my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE. In all fairness, they were baking them to take to our friend’s house tonight and as they so graciously put it, “It’s not like we’re cooking bacon or anything.” Ok, sure. Whatever you say. I am proud to say that even when those cookies began looking me directly in the face about an hour ago, I said no. No way I’m failing this week, because as I told David, he is clearly the weaker link.

 

This afternoon I was introduced via cyber space to @teddieleigh. She is a vegan who has been kind enough to offer advice, recipes and help promote our experiment this week. From black bean burritos to vegan cookies, she has already given us tons of ideas for the week!

 

As I mentioned before, David and I got Thai vegan food for dinner tonight. My roommates came along for the ride and of course did not abstain from meat, dairy or egg. However, both David and I thoroughly enjoyed our meals! I had a chow mein noodle dish with soy chicken and David picked a pad thai with vegan chicken for his first ever Thai meal. I was so proud of David. He didn’t act like a three year old once and really stepped out of his box to try something new.

 

While waiting for service, my roommate looked up vegan junk food for us. We are proud to report that Ritz crackers,  Fritos and Mike and Ikes are vegan. We may just make it through this week.

 

After dinner, David and I went our separate ways. I headed to a friend’s house, where everyone was eating cookies and drinking most likely non-vegan beer. I had a glass of water and took a big gulp of air. I still had fun but experienced my first social challenges with veganism. It kinda sucked at first, but I soon forgot that I wasn’t eating or drinking anything and was able to enjoy myself.

 

While the day was not easy, I still think it will probably end up being the easiest day. I’ll be going out to coffee in the morning,  so I will have my first run-in with soy beverage (It’s not milk. I have never seen a soybean lactate, nor do I know anyone who has). David and I don’t plan to meet up until dinner, so it will be a day of individual challenges, which is unfortunate since all the groceries somehow ended up at his house….

 

I haven’t felt any different yet, except for the fact that I got really tired really early tonight, but that is most likely not even the diet’s fault, more like a college student problem. Here is a list of what I ate today:

Fresh pineapple

16 oz Pomegranate Pleasure smoothie with soy protein boost

1 vegan chocolate chip cookie

A sauté of zucchini, yellow squash, tomato, spinach, garlic, onion and olive oil

a handful of walnuts

Thai vegan dish

a boat load of water

 

Don’t forget to check out David’s blog at http://www.agrilifestyle.blogspot.com and to follow us on twitter (@carrie_isaacson and @david_jones_). You can also read our blogs at http://www.agweb.com/blog/our_vegan_adventure/!

The Grocery Shopping Excursion

Well, David is already whining. This does not bode well for the rest of the week.

We spent the last three hours grocery shopping. We first hit  up the local health food store where we purchased blackbean burgers, vegan bread, tofu and some vegan crackers. I also found myself a vegan chocolate chip cookie, which I pretended tasted okay. David also had his first run in with vegan cheese and milk alternatives. He handled it a lot better than I imagined he would, but he was still clearly upset.

Soy cheese makes David sad.

Milk alternatives? I don't understand....

After the health food store we headed to my grocery store of choice, Vons. There we stocked up mainly on fruits and  vegetables (kale, zucchini, spinach, oranges, tomatoes and carrots). While we were waiting in the checkout line, David mentioned that he didn’t think all that food in the cart could feed him for a week. I then proceeded to point out that it would have to feed two of us for the week. David then proceeded to look like he might cry.

Lucky for me, I really like vegetables. I just whipped myself up a snack of spinach, zucchini, tomato and yellow squash, all sautéed in olive oil with a little onion and garlic. When David dropped me off at my house he mentioned something about frying some potatoes in vegetable oil to tide him over until dinner. I clearly have the dietary advantage here.

Throughout our shopping excursion, David and I kept making the same statement over and over: “This is hard.”

It really is. Never in my life have I had to read product ingredient lists in the store and have to determine if I was allowed to eat it. It was also rather expensive. Vegan foods are considered specialty items, which comes through in the cost. Because of this, we bought a lot of vegetables instead of stocking up on precooked meals and packaged products. This first shopping trip definitely opened my eyes to how difficult it is to eat vegan. Even with something as simple as bread, there was only one option in the entire bread aisle that was completely vegan. Everything else had egg or honey in it. Of course, the vegan bread also cost the most.

Is this vegan?

Is this vegan?

For dinner, we are going to a vegan Thai food restaurant called Thai Elephant. Again, I have had Thai food before, so this shouldn’t be too far out of my comfort zone, though I’ve never ordered anything vegan. David has never had any type of Thai food before, so I expect to take lots of pictures of his reactions to the various menu items.

Well, it turns out that my roommates are making oatmeal chocolate chip cookies right now. They’re my favorites. My roommates do have somewhat apologetic looks on their faces right now, but they’re still making them with me in the house. I think I need another vegan cookie, stat.

Vegan Meal One

I have finally been fed, though I am still hungry. David and I went to Jamba Juice and ordered off their vegan menu. David ordered the Five Fruit Frenzy with an immunity boost and an apple cinnamon pretzel (all vegan!) and I got the Pomegranate Pleasure with a soy protein boost (also all vegan).  David thoroughly enjoyed his smoothie, but I wish I had picked a different one- it has kind of a chalky texture to it that I assume is from the soy protein boost.

Now we’re headed to the grocery stores to stock up on vegan foods we can actually chew. We’re starting at New Frontiers, a health food store that I have been to before, but David has not. We also plan on checking Trader Joe’s and Von’s, just to see if it is possible to eat vegan if you don’t have a health food store nearby. We’ve also heard rumors that New Frontiers has vegan cupcakes, so I’m kind of excited!

 

I’m a vegan. Wait, what?????

I am officially a vegan.

 

I’ve been one for less than eleven hours (eight of which I was asleep) and I’m already feeling the challenge. It wasn’t until my roommates emerged from their rooms about an hour ago and started pouring themselves bowls of cereal and adding copious amounts of dairy to their morning beverages that it really hit: I can’t have ANY dairy this week. Or meat. Or eggs. Or any of my food staples.

 

I had pineapple for breakfast. That’s it. It is literally the only vegan breakfast food in my house right now. David and I desperately need to go grocery shopping today and stock up on fruits, vegetables, quinoa and tofu. Putting the two of us together in a health food store is bound to result in some funny situations, so keep your eyes open for a blog post or two about our grocery shopping escapades a little later today!

 

Currently, I am in self-imposed isolation. I locked myself in my room so I don’t have to watch my roommates eat their dairy-ful breakfasts. I guess I should just be thankful they haven’t started frying up bacon yet. David better get here soon, because I need some food.

 

While eating vegan is going to be difficult, it is nothing compared to adopting an entire vegan lifestyle. David and I decided to do a vegan diet experiment, not a vegan lifestyle experiment. If we were dedicated to lifestyle experiment, we would need to buy a new brand of toothpaste and laundry detergent and have to buy an entire new wardrobe just for the week, just to name a few. So as you read our blogs and tweets this week, be sure to remember we are simply doing a vegan lifestyle.

 

The Last Day

In about 13 hours, I go vegan for the next 7 days.

Being the protein loving gal that I am, I have carefully planned my “last meal,” and for those of you who have read my blog before, my choice should’t be a surprise. That’s right, David and I are heading to Firestone Grill for a tri-tip sandwich. Hopefully the glorious sandwich will get us through the next 7 days. David and I also plan to toast the week this evening with a glass of chocolate milk.

Pictures, tweets and more blogs to come!

Don’t forget to check David’s blog (www.agrilifestyle.blogspot.com) to follow his version of events and to check twitter (@carrie_isaacson and @david_jones_) for the most up to date experiences. You can also follow us on http://www.agweb.com under the “Our Vegan Adventure” blog!