So I have something BIG to discuss regarding food today. While today’s post mostly shows what I ate on Monday, the real story stems from Sunday night.
I ate CHICKEN. Rotisserie chicken. Organic rotisserie chicken from Whole Foods. By choice. Because I woke up Sunday morning and decided I was going to buy an organic rotisserie chicken from Whole Foods and eat it for dinner for the first time in six years.
Now, I have gone through these organic rotisserie chicken phases in the past where I think maybe I should have it for dinner. I even get myself to Whole Foods to buy the chicken and then, no pun intended, I chicken out.
But this time, I went through with it.
Why? That’s a great question. I don’t totally know why. I can’t even say it was a craving. It was just on my mind like hey, let’s have a simple, old school dinner. Maybe you need more protein and should eat chicken like you used to. If you don’t like it, it’s not like you have to ever eat it again. You can easily go right back to eating a mostly vegetarian diet except for those random nights of sushi thrown in making you a pescatarian.
I think a large part of why I ate the rotisserie chicken was simply because for a brief second, it’s what I wanted to do.
So how did it go? Well, I took a bite and it tasted just as I remember rotisserie chicken to taste. In that moment, I think I liked it just how I liked it for the first 33 years of my life that I ate it before switching to a meatless diet.
On my dinner plate along with the rotisserie chicken was roasted vegetables, the same type of meal I would serve myself for years in the past.
What I noticed:
Contrary to popular belief, I was not immediately more full by eating a major increase in protein at dinner in comparison to my usual meals. It took a few hours before I realized I was still full, rather than get a little bit hungry. I had no digestion problems that I noticed, maybe just a heaviness in my stomach that felt a little different than usual. I did wonder several times why I ate the chicken though! Like what happened? Did I really just do that? Did I really want to do that? I don’t know that I want to do that again.
I had my usual small bowl of oatmeal before I ran but then once I was running, I HAD ZERO ENERGY. It was so extremely noticeable to me that I couldn’t understand what was wrong. I didn’t run on Sunday so what the heck?
Oh right, I had chicken for dinner with vegetables and no carbs.
In fact, I had a salad for lunch on Sunday followed by chicken and vegetables for dinner.
I need carbs to run and feel like myself. It was so oddly crazy for me to experience such a level of muscle lethargy. I can barely explain this or put it into the right words. I made it three miles before heading home. At first I didn’t understand what was wrong! I’ve been running solidly for about six years now with a meatless diet, a diet focused heavily on carbs.
I get dead legs on occasion but this was different. It took a few minutes for me to realize I should think about what I ate the day before! With the way my usual diet is, it’s very rare that I need to think about what I eat in terms of running. I have a tough stomach and always eat enough carbs to fuel my workouts so this was almost funny to me to see how quickly a lack of carbohydrates can affect me. And, it all made sense to me all over again as to why I never could run very much before I switched to a meatless diet. I remember so clearly the initial switch away from high protein to meatless and in turn, higher complex carbs! Running and muscle recovery/strength was amazing!
Of course I understand completely that this was NOT because I ate chicken. It was because I didn’t include carbs with my meals which is exactly what I used to not do in the past. I easily could have made a potato with my dinner Sunday night but I honestly was not even thinking about it or worrying about balancing my meals. I was simply eating what I felt like eating at the time.
Will I eat chicken again? I don’t plan on it. I’m over it.
Am I sorry that I ate it? No, not really. It’s totally okay to eat something if I want to try eating it.
I tried chicken for dinner after six years and now feel satisfied with my attempt. In fact, I think it helped me ever so quickly to remember why I LOVE and appreciate the usual nutrient-dense meatless foods that normally eat.
Believe me, I was super excited for my post-run oatmeal (in a jar!) after that terrible run. I even added banana to the usual mix. Give me all the carbs please.
After breakfast, I made a big pot of quinoa to have for lunches and dinners this week. Since quinoa is a plant-based complete source of protein, it’s something I want to make sure I am a little more mindful about eating more often. Usually I get lazy and just open a can of organic chickpeas rather than easily boil a pot of quinoa. Quinoa is so easy to make and I always have it in the pantry!
Big salad for lunch which also included some roasted sweet potatoes. I had a giant sweet potato to use so I used half for lunch and would use the other half with dinner.
Side note: Instead of combining let’s say chickpeas and brown rice in order to reach a complete source of plant-based protein, you can simply eat quinoa which is already complete with the essential amino acids. Make sense? See, I still know this stuff even though I don’t talk about it much. 🙂
For dinner I used more of the quinoa and the rest of a giant sweet potato for combined with roasted broccoli, peppers, tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese on top.
I’m even back to warmed apple slices with peanut butter and some chocolate at night as a snack!
I’ve talked about my meatless diet in the past and why I suddenly switched my diet six years ago. It all stemmed from a random stomach virus and was not at all thought out or planned in advance. I go into detail about it in this post which includes the many health benefits I noticed from eating a meatless diet, in case you are interested in reading it.
Meatless isn’t for everyone or it may be for you for only a short period of time. Or maybe you are meatless a majority of the time. I think everyone has to customize their diets based upon their own needs and beliefs and remember it’s okay for it to change. It’s also okay to think about changing and then not change or just try a switch to see if you want to change.
Like my friend said, I didn’t sign an agreement when I chose to stop eating meat and poultry. At any time, I am free to taste or try something again and then choose to not eat it in the future. I think that’s a huge point to remember and one that I never thought about until she said it.I ate chicken for the first time in years, here's what happened #ontheblog #WIAW #organic #organicchicken #wholefoods Click To Tweet
Any other meatless eaters out there? Have you thought about trying a piece of chicken or meat or anything recently?