I'm sitting here at my desk, with just a few minutes before the lunch bell rings and my students flood back into the classroom. Normally at this time I'm trying to gear up - relax the shoulders, read one last blog, inhale a bite of who-remembers-what. But not today.
Today, I feel ready. Despite the sleepy corners of my brain, the rest of me is rejuvenated and ready to go. Something that rarely happens in my 30 minutes of lunch. And I think the difference today is entirely related to the vegan cleanse in which I am participating.
It's day 8. For breakfast I had a slice of multigrain toast with almond butter and a banana. Lunch is a collard green and butternut squash soup, and in my lunch bag is a green smoothie for a snack this afternoon. Dinner will be some yummy whole grains, lots of veggies and some form of plant protein. Instead of sugar-filled hot cocoa, there will be a teapot full of herbal tea.
As I said from the beginning, I have no intention of becoming a full-time lifetime vegan. But I am noticing little changes in how my body and brain feel when I eat this way. My skin feels softer, I don't feel heavy after a meal, and my spirit feels good knowing that I am making deliberate choices to eat healthy, whole foods. And honestly, I think the "wholeness" of the foods is what is making as much as a difference as the lack of animal products. The lack of processed foods (although I did have a few potato chips the other day) has been good, and the cutting out of sugar has been great. A week in, and the cravings are gone. Not that sugar still doesn't sound good - but I don't need it.
Tonight I'll go for a run. And tomorrow I will fill my body with more food that makes me feel energetic and happy and satisfied. And I never would have guessed that would be how I would be feeling. What a great surprise! I can't wait to see what the next 22 days brings.