Lately, I have been reading a lot of books about running. Not just
your run of the mill (no pun intended) ‘How To Run’ type of books, but books that relate stories about personal achievement, overcoming great odds, the nature of running, and ultra-running (with an undercurrent theme of being a vegetarian/vegan). Books and blogs like “No Meat Athlete” by Matt Frazier, “Born to Run” by Chistopher McDougall, “Finding Ultra” by Rich Roll and last but not least, “Eat &
Run” by Scott Jurek. All of these books focus not only on running itself, but how to do it in the more natural way (i.e. injury free) and all the while being a vegetarian/vegan (or Plant Powered as Rich Roll prefers to say). All of these books border on self-help/self-discovery/spiritual too in a way. Through running these people have found the ‘quiet zone’ the zen like mental place where you are actually living in the moment. The past and future doesn’t matter, just the here and now.
I first read “Born to Run” a few months ago after it was recommended by a few friends. Not just a couple of buddies that I hang with, but friends from a very diverse spectrum of people in my life. If these diverse people that I greatly respect have taken some life changing view from this book, maybe there is something to look into. (I trust my friends)
Secondly, I’ve been needing/wanting to lose weight for a while (like for years and years). After I went cold turkey (again, sorry, but no pun was intended there) on eating meat in early 2011, I did it right. I began eating the right kinds of vegetarian food. Slowly, fresh produce and whole grains began to replace processed foods, meat and dairy products (well, ah, almost all dairy products…). I lost weight. I went down from 220 pounds to around 208-210. Then I added exercise. That dropped me down to about 200. Then I started running and now I am in flux. I swing back and forth between 198 – 202 pounds. Its frustrating! People might say that I’m just gaining muscle and that is heavier than fat, but really? I still have visible areas (namely my belly and chest) where I could lose a lot of poundage.
So here comes my own personal 30 Day Experiment. I’m going to cut out all the remaining dairy products left in my diet. (I have a soft spot for pizza and fancy cheese with crackers). I’m going to cut out the alcohol. No more wine, rye, whisky, gin, vodka or beer. I feel that this move will make the biggest difference and probably the most important. I will replace drinking with running and eating well. I will also exercise every day. I will run not for time, nor distance, but for me. I will ride my bike whenever possible to do errands and I will do it all on a Plant Powered diet.
As of the beginning of this journey, June 10th, I ran 4.5 miles in 54 minutes (in 85-90 degree heat…) and I weigh exactly 200 pounds. Now, I’m not going to obsess about the weight, however I am more curious as to how my weight will change on a strict Plant Powered diet with regular exercise. I’m also curious to see how my attitude and demeanor will change. Will I become happier? Healthier? Will this 30-Day Experiment be the beginning of a lifestyle change? Will alcohol rage back into my life in 30 days? (or can I even go 30 days without drinking…)
Stay tuned for my progress. I hope to see some improvements along this journey. I’ll share my experiences with you and I hope you’ll share your own endeavors as you move to achieve your personal goals!
Have fun and Be Safe!