two weeks

written by alison

It’s been two full weeks since I gave up eating sugar, alcohol, dairy, grains, canned beans, canned tomatoes, soy and corn. Even though 14 days isn’t very long, I’ve learned a lot about myself in this short time period.

As my best friend sat at my kitchen island eating a slice of mac and cheese pizza with ranch sauce for dipping, I realized that I’m stronger than I give myself credit for. Since starting this process I have gone to the movie theater and not eaten popcorn, not caved to pizza in front of me, avoided running a train on the french onion dip just to my left at a party, and ordered tea at Starbucks twice instead of getting a tasty hot chocolate.

My resolve to give this theory a shot to work has shattered my belief that I “need” to eat certain foods or that I should reward myself with carbs on carbs on carbs. Food is for nourishing, this is my new focus.

I also learned that I love the kitchen — even though I have routine meltdowns in it. Because this experiment takes meal prep to an extreme. In fact, I don’t think it counts as meal prep if you do it every single day. Isn’t the point to meal prep one day a week? I digress.

It’s not uncommon for me to spend 4 hours a day cooking. Mornings are usually 90 minutes of general prep for the day and eating a meal large enough to keep my stomach safe from the pile of meds. I try to speed up lunch but need to include time for my snacks, yes, plural. Dinner rounds out with 1-2 hours especially when I try to clean while I cook.

I designed the kitchen. I literally envisioned the space and made it reality. I love love love my kitchen. But when I have to decide between having enough food to eat, getting work done, having time to relax or sleeping, I can get emotional. I know this is not forever, it just feels like it at the moment.

Yet, even when I burst into tears talking about how much time I spend cooking, I find myself wanting to walk by the refrigerator and get to work. There’s also something so incredibly rewarding about creating truly nourishing meals with your bare hands. And my favorite part of all, there’s no computer in the kitchen.

Just like I learned that I’m stronger than I originally thought, having to document every calorie I consume taught me that I’m able to take on new habits immediately. I predicted that I would suck at logging food and would have to apologize to my doctor for only having 1 or 2 complete days each week. Instead, I’ve been diligent about logging every single crumb before or just after eating it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m excited to not have to do this anymore, but within 24 hours it was a non-negotiable part of my day. Who’s to say I can’t use that mental dedication to add in fitness, reading, writing or global domination? Maybe next year.

I’ve gotten a few questions about how I’m doing 2 weeks in. Aside from the urgent care visit, my headaches have been primarily mild. I had 2 spikes but they followed 2 stressful events. However, if you math, that means out of 14 days, over 20% have been bad pain days. Not the percentage I was hoping for. But it’s early, cause detoxing from Diet Coke and carbs on carbs on carbs has to take at least 3 weeks, right? Seriously though, I’m still optimistic.

If you ignore the headaches, which I try to, my health otherwise has been pretty amazing. So I’m hopeful that’s a sign of things to come. If not, you’re all invited to a carbs on carbs on carbs party. I’ll even show you the kitchen that I love so much.