Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Day in the Life

A year ago this week, I made the commitment to become a raw vegan.  Although I had only become vegan three months prior and still stumbling my way through food selections,  it wasn't a dramatic decision.  In fact, the choice to become raw just happened naturally.    I had been invited to participate in my first juice fast.  In preparation, my coach suggested that we eat raw the week leading up to Juice Day 1 to ease our way into the fast to avoid a jolting  "shock" to our systems.  Despite eating raw, as you'll recall, my first attempt did not go over so well (Rescuing Failure).   Keeping that episode in mind with  respect to the realization that that my body had begun to purge itself of toxins, the last thing I needed to do was consume cooked foods.  I began to eat raw and starting researching how to "eat raw properly".   I liked the way I felt after eating raw.  It was a noticeable difference.  I had energy, stamina, and a feeling of euphoria.  I did not experience the lethargy that accompanied a cooked meal.  I suddenly could practice yoga or even workout in the evenings if I were inclined to.  My second fast (Breaking Fast) was a success, most likely due to the fact that I had practically one full month of eating at least 75% raw.   What I discovered is that:

Better preparation leads to better results.

Wow.  All of that seemed so long ago.  Today, I am constantly asked what I eat in a day or how can I "be full after eating raw all day"?   It is not difficult to eat raw.  Yes, there is a gourmet raw version of  practically every cooked dish and it is fun to be creative.  However, keeping it simple is the easiest way to eat and maintain a raw diet from day to day.  I save the fancy raw meals for fancy times the same as anyone consuming cooked foods treat "going out" to eat.  A common mistake when transitioning is consuming high fat raw meals.  They are tasty and mimic cooked counterparts.  By keeping it simple, you can eat low fat raw with ease. Keeping it simple was the very first lesson I learned when I first converted, (What a Bargain), remembering to KISS my foods (Keeping It Short and Simple). Show your love as you give yourself a kiss with each meal.   You can, in fact, go about your tasks:

Kissing Yourself All Day

To demonstrate how easy it is, here is my picture diary of a typical, random day.  It is my KISS to you:

Early Morning 
Water                   Herbal Tea                           Water  
6am - I always start the day with a glass of water, keeping a full glass ready by my night stand. Meditation and  yoga followed by a cup of herbal tea.  Usually drink two glasses of water prior to daily 5k run. The morning is completed with weight training and a glass of water.

Breakfast to Mid Morning
Bananas & Pears        Water                        Apples              

Breakfast is either fruit, a fruit/vegetable smoothy, or a green juice followed by a glass of water.  Mid-morning snack is a mono-meal of fruit.

Lunch to Mid-Day
                   Salad                           Water          Red Bell Peppers
1pm -Lunch through mid-day is when I eat the largest meal, usually foods which are hard to digest or take longer than fruit to process. This is also when I will consume the majority of fat intake for the day. A glass of water is typical after lunch.
 The perfect mid-day snack is a mono-meal of a fruit or vegetable.

Herbal Tea                        Bananas                       Water
Afternoon is the beginning of "winding down".  A late day cup of herbal tea is wonderful.  A mono meal of fruit usually will hold me over until dinner followed by a glass of water.

Dinner to End of Day
Squash noodles/sauce         Tangerines        Herbal Tea
5pm - Dinner consists of a light vegetable meal.  Later, around 7pm, a mono meal of fruit.  The day completes with a quiet evening asana and a cup of soothing herbal tea. The evening ends by pouring a glass of water to sit, on the nightstand,
                                                                                 ready for the next morning's wake. 

Getting Started
As you can see, it isn't an arduous, formidable task. Some days, I eat fruit for every meal.  Other days, I drink thick juices or soups made from extracted fruits and vegetables.  It's up to you. The more simple you make it, the easier it is. To get started, I suggest to begin by substituting foods, one meal at a time.  Breakfast is probably the best meal to begin with.  After you have replaced a meal successfully and repetitively for at least one week or more, move on to substitute all mini-meals or snacks before you continue with the next major meal replacement until you feel comfortable.  To be honest, I did not do it this way.  I took the plunge and dove in head first, replacing 75% of all meals within the first week and moving to 95% within the first month.  Here are a few quick tips:

  1. Do what is best for you. Pick the fruits and vegetables you enjoy to get started.  If you eat something you like eating, it will be all the more easier to stick with it.
  2. If you fall off the wagon, dust off and jump back on.  There isn't going to be a test at the end of the day.
  3. As always, hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.  Not only is water "brain food", it is crucial to the digestion and will help elimination process through your body consistently and in a more efficient manner.   
  4. Eat frequently.  I eat an average of every 2 hours in a 12 hour span of time.  When you add that up, that is quite a considerable amount of food.  I am satiated and never "feel" hungry.  If hunger pangs hit you, a piece of fruit will always answer the call.   
  5. Phone a friend.  Find a coach or someone who is an established raw vegan who will be happy to aid,  guide you, or provide step by step resource materials as you need it.
  6. Discover new ways to prepare and eat foods previously cooked.  Explore! Throw away old fears - trying a new exotic fruit or vegetable you never had before.   
Enjoy yourself, have fun "uncooking" and seal it with a kiss.


Davina said...

Thank you for this!! I HAVE always wondered:-)

I am not ready to go vegan or even veg, but what I have been doing is eating *less* meat and animal products. It's a journey. I'm very grateful to you and Jo Ann for all your insights!

Yoga Girl said...

You are correct, walk your journey and everything shall happen in its time. Eating less of animal products is great. You will reap the benefits of doing just that. Continue your path with love, light, and positive energy. Happy to assist!

Anonymous said...

Thank you. This is just what I wanted to know as well. I have been replacing meals here and there. Thank you again. Love ya!

Yoga Girl said...


Most graciously welcome. I am happy to know you have begun your journey. I wish you peace and ease as you take one step at a time. May success shower your path with support and love.