One Month Challenge: Gone Meatless, Week 4

[Everyone’s got a vice, a bad habit, something they know they need to change. Unfortunately, everyone also has a million excuses why they just can’t do it. Not anymore. Every month we will be following a different CollegeCandy writer as she takes on a personal challenge. This month, Emmy’s going 31 days without beef. Or chicken. Or turkey. Or….you get the idea. Last week’s attempts at tofu didn’t go so well, so how did she fare this week?]

Okay, so it’s been kind of a busy fall season so far, and I haven’t had a ton of time (read: any time where I wasn’t either studying or drinking) to call home (delinquent daughter… whoops!). Anyway, my family had no idea that I was going meatless for a month, and I just mentioned it in passing to my mom on the phone, and she laughed. She thought I was joking.

To be fair, my mom knows that I LOVE meat, and so she was really concerned that something was wrong because there was no other plausible explanation in her mind as to why else I would stop eating it. So after some intense mother calming (during which I was chowing down on some delicious hummus), and multiple reassurances that I was still getting plenty of protein and not about to pass out at any moment, my mom finally let up on the whole issue.

To be honest, hearing other people’s reactions when they realize that I’m not eating meat for a month has been one of the most interesting parts of this meatless commitment. It seems like eighty percent of people that I encounter respond with something along the lines of, “Oh my gosh, I could NEVER do that, why in the world are you doing that?” I’m not even a full-time vegetarian, and I’m still rather offended by the way people speak to me about it. I mean, honestly, I say more power to vegetarians; it is so much healthier for you and your body, and there are countless environmental, humanitarian, not to mention nutritional reasons to make the choice to be a vegetarian or even a vegan. While, yes, obviously I will be the first person to admit that meat is incredibly delicious… it still doesn’t seem appropriate for strangers to insult or question someone’s life choices, even if it isn’t meant in an intentionally harmful way.

Vegetarians out there, is this something that bothers you, or something that you’re just used to by now?

On other vegetarian related issues, everyone told me that not having as much protein would make me feel more tired and lagging (that was one of my mom’s main concerns), but I haven’t noticed it at all. On the contrary, despite the fact that October has been an insanely busy month for me  (a ridiculous amount of midterms, our sorority’s new members preparing for initiation, health and safety checks that I have to perform as an RA, and a general lack of sleep), I am not any more tired than I was when I was eating meat. That makes me wonder if I’d have even more energy if I maintained this diet during a more normal month.

Finally, just during this past week, a huge group of my friends went out to Flat Top (a stir fry restaurant), and I tried cooked tofu there. It was a considerable improvement from my attempt at cooking it, but I’m still not particularly crazy about the texture. There’s just something a little off there for me, but the taste is not nearly as bad as I was expecting it to be and I didn’t feel as overstuffed and lethargic as I normally do when I fill my bowl with meat, meat and more meat.

Looking back on my challenge so far, I’m honestly a little shocked that I have made it 23 days without meat! There are only eight days left until I can chow down on beef once again and while I am seriously considering limiting my meat consumption once October is over, I know I’m going to end this whole thing about 12 hours early. Why? Uh, free burritos at Chipotle on Halloween, that’s why. Yes, they do have lots of veggie options, but the steak there just calls out to me. Loud and clear. It’s been hard enough to turn it down when I have to pay for it, but it’s FREE!

What can I say? I’m only human.

So, only eight days to go. I just hope that, after 30 days sans meat, indulging in it won’t make me feel icky (as I’ve heard it does). But at the end of the day, that’s a risk I’m willing to take. I mean, it’s FREE CHIPOTLE. If there’s one thing that’s worth a little pain, that would be it.

Candy Dish: Fashion & Beauty
Candy Dish: Fashion & Beauty
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