Freedom, Fasting and My 4th of July

It seems aIMAG0259 little odd that I would be blogging on a evening when most people are out eating barbecue or watching fireworks or at home getting ready to go to the Chosen Few picnic tomorrow. (It’s a Chicago thing and I’m not jealous at all. Well, maybe just a little.) My family is out eating barbeque as well. Me? I’m at home in my pajamas. It’s not because I’m vegan (although it can be rough on a sister at these Southern cookouts) but because I’m fasting.

I know. I know.

WHO IN THE WORLD FASTS ON THE 4TH OF JULY?

Me. It’s odd. Like me writing this post.

I am actually not on a “complete” fast. As a former anorexic, going without food on purpose is really, well, I just don’t want to go there. My Pastor agreed when I talked to him about this fast. He told me that I didn’t realize that I lived a “fasted life” in a lot of ways but he was curious as to what exactly I did eat. 🙂 Our church is doing a fast next week but I will be traveling to SCW Mania (if you’re going to be there, come by the Piloxing booth and say “hey!”) and need to have some food on my stomach so I decided to to it this week. And my seven day fast ends on 7/7 which happens to be my birthday and my first day back teaching Zumba in almost three months.

The timing is perfect.

Fasting is challenging. My daughter left the rest of my coconut ice cream in the freezer (I thought she had eaten it). Starbucks loaded my free birthday drink to my rewards card the FIRST morning of my fast (UGH!) and I have a truck load of Chia Bars that I brought back from FitBloggin that are calling my name. It’s also challenging because I have to face my habits like the things I just grab because I can, the lack of planning when I KNOW I’m going to be out all day, the demise of my creativity (why choose something different when I can just buy tofu and rice from the local Asian restaurant when I’m tired?), the fact that I don’t drink enough water, I drink WAY too many lattes (three a week is too many for me) and, even for a vegan, I don’t eat enough vegetables. Not nearly as many as I would like to.

Because I haven’t been feeling well lately, my body has been doing all sorts of things. I’ve noticed with pulling things out of my diet, I can separate what’s diet related and what’s not. I’ve noticed that if I eat food of quality then I don’t need to eat as much. I’ve noticed that food just TASTES better.

One thing that I DIDN’T do which is is HUGE for me was get on the scale and monitor my “weight loss.” I haven’t been on a scale since the morning of my surgery. (Well, I tried one day with one leg but, of course, the reading was wrong. I knew I had gone too far and I was done at that point.) This isn’t about weight loss. This is about habit loss. My mind feels more clear (this could have to do with quietly pulling away from Facebook some as well) and I’ve just been able to not “react” to things as I normally would. I feel more conscious and focused. I’m enjoying the rest and the down time. From a food addict to being able to fast on the 4th of July: that’s freedom.

Here’s a recipe I made with the fresh peaches and tomatoes we got from the Farmer’s Market.

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3 peaches
4 heirloom tomatoes
1/4 of red onion
1 jalapeno (this gives it some REAL kick. If you don’t like spicy, leave it out or use half)
1/4 cup of vegetable broth
2 tbsp. of cilantro
2 cloves of minced garlic
Herbmare and/or salt and pepper to taste

I used the pulse setting on my BlendTec (do you know you can buy a refurbished one on a payment plan now?) because I like mine a little chunky but you can blend to your preference.

Happy 4th of July!

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