If the Klingons won’t eat qagh on Meatless Monday, then neither will I.

17 08 2009

I’ve been reading “The Complete Book of Running” by Amby Burfoot along with my personal bible, “Run Less, Run Faster” , and was initially surprised at some of the nutrition advice.  Amby comes right out and says runners should be vegetarians while Bill Pierce suggest a mostly plant-based diet.  As someone who has always been more of a strength-training devotee than a runner, I’m used to being told to chow on meat by the fistful after maybe waving a piece of spinach over it.

The virtues of produce are many.    The indigestible parts of the plant bundle up with dietary cholesterol and carry it out of the body before it can be recycled from the colon and float around the bloodstream looking for an artery to clog.  Plants are a source of moisture which is invaluable to us “ugly bags of mostly water” in our quest to stay hydrated.  And all that fiber helps you poop, which is very important in preventing diverticulosis and other nasty colonic consequences.

I toyed with vegetarianism once before, back in the early 1990s, and actually went over a year without eating meat.  At the time I did it for weight control and cholesterol reduction, although it accomplished neither.  I ended up eating a lot of omelets, cheese subs and pasta—-managing to stay fat with a total cholesterol in the 180s, rather than 150s I assumed it would achieve.  When I transferred from community college to the University, I went back to eating meat for the sake of convenience.  Given the fact that I went to school during the day, worked in the evening and studied all night, I didn’t have much time to cook and soon tired of eating French fries at the drive-through.

Lately I’ve been hearing a lot about Meatless Mondays, proposed by Johns Hopkins in 2003 to ease the planetary burden of raising animals for food consumption as well as improve the health of those who eat them.  It’s been knocking around in my brain as “something I should do” to help achieve both of those aims.  I tried it last week and it worked out mostly okay.  I ended up eating a little bit of chicken at lunch but was meatless otherwise the entire day.  I did it again today and was 100% successful.  I managed to eat eggs without meat for breakfast (something I rarely ever do), with bruschetta and a salad for lunch, followed by a wonderful homemade vegetable barley soup made by my dear sweet Fred.  I snacked on fruit throughout the day, and it was as sweet as any chocolate I might have reached for instead.

I like Meatless Mondays, and will incorporate them into my weekly menu-planning.  It’s a great way to get more variety in my diet, and I think it will make me feel better too.  I feel somehow lighter and more energetic today, unless that’s my imagination. 

As far as my training plan goes, today ended up being an unexpected day off due to foot pain.  I’m seeing the podiatrist tomorrow and will hopefully just shift my workout plans forward by one day.

More later…..


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