It was Thursday the 23rd January. I had had leftover pasta with vegan pesto for breakfast and rice noodles in vegetable broth for lunch. It was pretty similar to what I’d had the day before.
I was feeling run down, grumpy, irritable and I was on my way to see my mum which involved a tube and train journey. And I was late. Putting someone like me in Waterloo Station with a growly stomach and 15 minutes to spare is a bad idea.
Having been vegan for 23 days for Veganuary and having taken on the 30ish.me 30 Day Vegan Challenge I felt cleaner and more clear-headed than I had done for ages. I knew what I could eat, knew what I couldn’t and had more recipes at the ready than you could shake a carrot at. So why had I eaten so badly the last week? Who knows, but something suddenly snapped. For the past week I had felt lethargic, slightly miserable and disinterested in food. At that moment at Waterloo Station, it suddenly hit me… I NEEDED MEAT. And I needed something now.
Cursing my colleague at work who put the idea of a ham and cheese toastie into my head, I speed-walked around the station like a desperate squirrel on the hunt for the last acorn of the season. Narrowing my eyes, I targeted Upper Crust and unwaveringly ordered a ham and cheese melted baguette. Once on the train and seated, I breathed a sigh of relief and spent the next 15 minutes savouring every bite. Cor blimey, it was good.
Yes, I felt guilty (ever since I discovered it was believed that pigs have the intelligence of a 3 year old, I’ve always imagined pigs being like toddlers. I was eating a toddler that very second), yet it tasted too good for me to stop. And it didn’t stop there. The next day, I took mum out for lunch and wolfed down a cheese burger. And then a scotch egg. Part of my excuse was that I was going to be attending the Xtreme Bootcamp which required more protein intake than I’d been having.
Why I fell off the ‘vagon’ (vegan + wagon = vagon)
I truly believe it was because I hadn’t prepared my meals as well as I had for the 30ish.me 30 Day Challenge. The first couple of weeks were absolutely fine, but then I somehow didn’t have time to prepare for my lunches and dinners the next day. So most of what I ate was rather spontaneous and resulted in a rather unbalanced diet packed full of carbs and little else. Also, with an Xtreme Bootcamp coming up I knew I needed to get more protein.
If I hadn’t felt so good after eating that ham and cheese melt, I would have continued with my vegan diet. However, after several days of eating meat and dairy (roast turkey, chilli con carne, prawns, chicken) I’ve realised I’m eating rubbish.
Plans for the future
Eating the way I have been the last few days hasn’t made me feel good. I’m eating more than I need and the food I’m eating has been rather junky. As the boyfriend said, ‘WHY ARE YOU EATING SO MUCH? BE VEGAN.’ And it’s true, I ate a lot less when vegan. However, having been anaemic before, I’m not about to let that happen again so I’m going to cut down on the meat, keep eggs and Total Yoghurt and the occasional fish. And then, once I’ve got that under control, I’ll see how it goes.