Vegan 21 Day Fix | Days 7-9
I’m a dirty rotten cheater, but I have aspirations to clean up my act.
That sums up nicely days 7-9 of my vegan Fix.
Day 7 was a miracle day.
Because I woke up dreading my workout, but after coffee and a little bit of blog editing, I was FIRED UP.
The itch to sweat sort of crept up on me. Suddenly, I couldn’t WAIT to work out.
Day 7 exercise = I did Autumn’s 30-minute Plyo Fix video. This one is intense but doable, because you only have to jump and soar for thirty seconds at a time, and you get a thirty-second break between sets. Don’t get me wrong – my thighs were BURNING during this workout. But it was easier than I expected.
Then, I went for a run!!!! Yeah, ME. A regular workout AND a run. I ran 1.5 miles and then walked until I had reached 20 minutes on my little app. I use the Mapmywalk app. It’s great because it tracks your mileage, speed, and time, and it tells you how quickly you ran/walked each mile. The run wasn’t easy, but I did it because of the brownies and skittles and Pringles I’d eaten the night before.
After my workout, I edited my days 4-6 post for a few hours, published it, and then skipped out the door to head back to my mother’s house.
Some of my siblings were destined to be at my mother’s house on day 7, along with my niece and nephew and apparently $500 of fireworks.
They are having a small neighborhood chicken and fish fry at my parents’ house, too.
What will I be having?
Well, I don’t exactly know, yet.
I DID pack up some veggies and spinach and other things before I headed for my mother’s, though.
Mother and I discussed that we’d run to the grocery store on day 7. NOT FOR TREATS.
Well, maybe some treats.
But also, dairy-free chocolate chips. I am HOPING the store has them. Target used to be my go-to location for dairy-free chips (you know, those Enjoy Life chocolate chips), and then they just CEASED to stock them. WTF, Target?
West Michigan is seriously behind the healthy-eating curve. You have to drive FOREVER to reach a Trader Joes or Whole Foods.
Well, not forever. But those stores certainly aren’t close enough for ME to visit them.
Aldis is gaining momentum in the organic/healthy options movement. Every time I go back, there’s a new organic variation of something on the shelf/in the cooler! Love Aldis. LOVE. ALDIS.
Did I mention I had to kill a lightning-quick spider DURING my workout day 7 morning?
I wasn’t even going to include this picture, because it seems like cruel and unusual punishment to force YOU to see the spider, too.
I thought about it, though, and I was like, If someone else talked about killing a gross spider during a workout, I’d at least want to have the OPTION to see the spider.
Scroll quickly if you wish to avert your eyes!
Here he is:
That nasty troll came ZOOM scurrying out from behind my sofa chair. So fast, I almost didn’t see him.
But OF COURSE I saw him. Because I’ve got the peripherals of a criminal-catcher, remember?
And I zoomed right over to him and stomped on his head!
I couldn’t grab a tissue to squish him with because this SOB was FAST. I had to react.
Which meant I had to pick his hideous black legs out of my carpet fibers through a tissue before I could resume my workout.
Which I resumed and completed with utter paranoia that another black beast would come charging at me at any moment.
I practically RACED out the door for my run.
Anyway, when I finally made it to my mother’s house on day 7, we DID take a trip to the grocery store.
I knew I wanted to make cookies later, and since she doesn’t have flax seed, I picked some up at the store. Along with dairy-free chocolate chips.
WHICH ARE EXTREMELY EXPENSIVE, by the way.
Which I knew before I got to the store.
My 10 oz. bag of dairy-free chips cost nearly $6! Yeah!
I can’t recall how much the flax seed was, but it was reasonably priced.
I also bought this beautiful thing because I’ve seen these bars EVERYWHERE online and simply couldn’t resist:
Certified vegan! Yippee!
GUESS WHAT ELSE I FOUND AT THE STORE.
Certified vegan ice cream!!!!! Ignore the lengthy ingredients list just like I did.
FINALLY Brooke can shut up about wanting ice cream.
I’ll tell you how THAT glorious galaxy of euphoria tasted in a little bit.
When we returned home from the store, I made Spicy Red Lentil Dip. I followed the recipe’s cooking technique, but the spices were sort of an amalgam of whatever looked appealing in my mother’s cupboard.
Here are my beautiful red lentils. I bought this bag from Aldis a long time ago.
I spend a lot of time in Aldis.
These pictures showcase me bringing my lentils to a boil and then reducing and cooking them until most/all water is absorbed. Lentils cook very quickly (like 15-20 minutes).
After the lentils were cooked through, I added the following spices/seeds:
Not pictured: salt.
This is how much of each spice/seed I added:
I know you probably want me to tell you how much of each spice I added, but the truth is that I don’t measure spices when I add them to food.
Unless I’m mixing up some of my Healthy Homemade Taco Seasoning. I measure those spices out.
Since I had so few of the original recipe’s spices on hand for this lentil dip, I simply tossed in spices that I knew I liked.
I added them to the lentils in amounts that corresponded to how much I liked each spice.
Then, I tasted and added, tasted and added. If the lentils weren’t spicy enough, I added more cayenne. If I couldn’t taste the oregano, I tossed more in. If they needed more salt, that went in, too.
Lentils are quite versatile. Red lentils have a tomato taste to them. And they are kind of hearty. They taste similar to a thickened tomato sauce when you mash them up.
Anyway, once I finally reached a decently seasoned lentil dip, I got to mashing.
The lentils weren’t exactly mashing as well as I would have liked for a “dip.” Probably because I wasn’t using the right tools.
When scooped onto a whole grain cracker, however, this lentil “dip” is quite delicious!
I mean, it was OKAY.
It had a winter meal flavor to it. Hearty and warm. Soup-like, I guess. Though I don’t eat a lot of soup.
It wasn’t that great.
I mean, it wasn’t even close to being as good as HUMMUS, but it was tolerable.
I already had plans for that lentil dip.
I had plans to return to my apartment on day 8 and use my food processor or handheld immersion blender to blend those lentils up a little more.
And then, I had plans to add some olive oil and try to turn those lentils into something similar to this Red Lentil Hummus.
AND/OR I planned on adding some avocado and blending THAT into the lentils.
What’s great about lentils is that they count as a red container on the vegan 21 Day Fix!
That’s why I made the lentil dip in the first place.
Because how great is it that you can scoop your red container onto whole grain crackers and eat it like THAT?!
Anyway, after I tasted the lentils, I dug into my cashew milk ice cream.
And MY. GOD.
This ice cream.
OTHERWORLDLY, this ice cream is.
I mean, I would choose this ice cream over Ben & Jerry’s any day.
It was creamy and delicious. Slightly salty and filled with swirls of caramel and tiny pieces of chocolate.
I ate the whole thing.
NOT in one sitting.
But in one day.
I mean, I TRIED to save the second half for another day. It just didn’t turn out that way.
Because the second half was screaming at me from the freezer after dinner.
You know what I loved most about this ice cream?
That it didn’t leave that gummy, throat-clearing feeling inside my esophagus after I ate it.
Because it’s dairy-free!
No side effects of dairy!
I think I’ll choose it every time I choose ice cream from now on.
I was THAT impressed with the flavor. And I liked having a clear throat after eating it.
After I finished the first half of that ice cream container, I made and consumed cookie dough.
Because why not, right?
I “followed” the recipe on the back of my ridiculously expensive dairy-free chip back.
I halved the recipe because THOSE CHIPS WERE TOO EXPENSIVE TO USE THE WHOLE BAG AT ONCE.
Oh, and because I didn’t need to eat an entire batch of cookie dough.
Anyway, this is how I made the cookie dough:
I first created a flax egg. A flax egg is a vegan egg replacement. You simply mix 1 T. of flax meal with 3 T. of water and let that sit and congeal for about five minutes. A flax egg binds things together just like a real egg in the baking process, so it’s a go-to substitution for vegan baking.
I added 1/4 c. of white sugar (refined sugar is the devil, I know, but my coconut sugar was miles away at my apartment) and 1/8 c. of brown sugar to my flax egg and stirred.
Then, I poured 1 T. of vanilla into that mix and stirred. The more vanilla you add, the better. This is never untrue.
Then, I added 1/2 c. of peanut butter to that mixture and stirred.
Then, instead of adding all the flours listed on the chip bag, I just added 1 c. of oats.
Then, I added half my bag of dairy-free chips.
And voila – vegan chocolate chip oatmeal cookie dough!!!
When I first tasted this cookie dough, I thought, hmmmm, this is different.
Because it wasn’t like normal cookie dough.
And I wasn’t sure if I was tasting flax seed. I was pretty sure, though.
Kind of an unmistakable flavor, flax.
What I think I was REALLY tasting was a lack of butter/oil/egg.
But by the fifth bite (you know I’m not one to give up on something), I really, REALLY liked it.
I think I was just expecting Monster Cookie dough and did not get Monster Cookie dough. But once I let that wish go, the dough was good.
And I mean it had SUGAR in it, so you KNOW it was fairly delicious.
I ate almost the entire batch, because that’s the kind of mood I was in on day 8.
I also ate more brownies.
And some candy.
And a little more candy.
OH! And Monster Popcorn.
We eat a lot of monster things around my parents’ house.
Monster Popcorn = stove-cooked popcorn. You cook kernels in a thin layer of coconut oil/vegetable oil in a lidded pot over a high-heat burner until all kernels are popped. Then, if you’re not vegan/dieting, you pour melted butter and salt all over the popcorn.
If you’re vegan/Brooke, you pour melted coconut oil and sometimes kettle corn seasoning on top (sugar and salt = kettle corn seasoning).
Also, I ate more Triscuits.
And I was stuffed to the brim when I went to bed. Oops!
What I ate on Day 7:
- overnight oats = 1 yellow A, 1 orange
- 2 c. spinach + 1/4 c. quinoa taco “meat” = 2 green, 1/4 yellow A
- approx. 1/2 red of lentil dip + 4 whole grain crackers = 1/2 red, 1/2 yellow B
- strawberries = 1/2 purple
- 1 container of ice cream = is there a color for whale container?
- chocolate chip oatmeal cookie dough = 1.5 yellow A, CHEAT, CHEAT
- brownies = CHEAT
- candy = CHEAT
- popcorn = CHEAT
- Triscuits = CHEAT
- the moon
Day 7 totals:
0.5 red (of 3)
2 green (of 5)
3.25 yellow A
15 yellow B cheats
1/2 purple (of 1)
0 blue (of 1)
LOTS of teaspoons of peanut butter and coconut oil
This is getting embarrassing.
All foods were vegan.
And I decided that I’m going to try to get back on the straight-and-narrow for food starting day 8.
Because I need to take “progress pics” on day 11 (halfway through).
And I would like to see some actual PROGRESS in those pics.
Actually, despite my massive food consumption, I have maintained a five lb. weight-loss since I started this diet.
I mean, after day 7’s eats, the scale number might bump up a little bit. But still, five pounds!
I think it’s because of all of the running I’ve been forcing myself to do.
And the lack of dairy and meat in my diet.
Because one doesn’t get to eat like a whale and keep seeing a five-pound deficit on the scale!
Unless those pounds are going to catch up with her…
I was so tired on day 8. I’m always tired. Aren’t you annoyed with how tired I always am?
My tummy was angry with me on day 8.
“STOP EATING SO MUCH CRAP!” – my insides.
“FINE!” – me.
Around 7AM, I dragged my butt out of bed and dragged myself back to my apartment.
Then, I sat at my laptop and typed all of these words to you.
Then, I went for a run.
And I typed that BEFORE I went for the run, just to remove the option to NOT run.
Because BOY OH BOY was I getting clever with my I-don’t-need-to-work-out-today excuses on day 8.
Day 8 exercise = 30 minute run and a new personal goal met! I ran 3 miles in under 30 minutes. I haven’t done than before! Very proud of myself. Then, I did 50 lunges and 200 jump ropes straight through – no stopping. I felt REALLY good about myself after day 8’s workout.
As you can see, I KILLED that workout.
ESPECIALLY – and this cannot be understated – because I was very tired day 8 morning and praying for a reason to skip day 8’s workout.
Also, I have to say that Husband is the BEST cheerleader. He is just so genuinely proud of me for running and working out. His joy is truly infectious.
I told him I was going for a run, and when I glanced down at my phone on my way out the door, I saw that he had texted back, saying, “A run??? You’re killing it!!”
And suddenly I had wings on my feet.
He is so impressed with my running that it makes me doubly impressed with my running. Like, if Husband is impressed with what I’m doing, it must be pretty good.
And it IS. Because I’m STILL down five pounds since this vegan round of the Fix started.
EVEN THOUGH I KEEP EATING THINGS I SHOULD NOT BE.
I attribute my maintained-weight-loss-despite-chocolate to the running and to vegan cheats being much harder to come by.
I mean, I HAVE to make healthy cookie dough if I want cookie dough. Butter isn’t an option. Neither are a lot of pre-packaged things like cookies.
And I’m not allowed to have EGGS. So I have to eat superfood flax meal instead.
And I have to buy special ice cream that’s 180 calories per serving instead of 220 because you just can’t FIT that much fat into a VEGAN dessert.
These vegan sufferings are actually kind of nice for someone like me who has a tendency to take down a kingdom of nourishment in one evening.
I made and ate something ridiculous on day 8.
A Red Lentil Hummus Wrap.
Which is something I concocted completely on my own from the red lentils I cooked and seasoned on day 7.
This wrap…this wrap…
This wrap is one of the greatest things I’ve ever eaten in my life.
Because this wrap is so good, I am going to post the recipe for the hummus and the wrap in an entirely separate post!
I will share that post a few days after I share THIS one.
Here’s a sneak peek:
It was INCREDIBLE. And the hummus counts as a RED container! Because lentils are a protein on the vegan 21 Day Fix!
BAH the joy.
Vegan Fix = creativity = kitchen skill building = foodie bliss.
Anyway, sometime after that wrap, I made some more cookie dough by mixing 1 flax egg with 1/4 c. coconut palm sugar, adding 1/4 c. peanut butter, and adding 1 c. oats and a sprinkle of dairy-free chocolate chips.
I slowly ate this throughout the day.
There’s something about vegan cookie dough that just tastes like flax egg.
But don’t you worry – I finished it!
I also snacked on 10 asparagus spears, which = 1 green.
Later on, I busted out that Endangered Species chocolate bar I bought on day 7 and ate some of that.
I’m usually not crazy about salty/sweet combinations, but I’m finding that I’m starting to like them on the vegan Fix.
Interestingly, the salty/sweet combo seems to be popular when it comes to vegan sweets.
I made a small quinoa taco bowl for dinner and had some whole grain tortilla chips after that.
What I ate on Day 8:
- red lentil hummus wrap = 1 red, 1 green, 1 yellow B, 1 blue, part of an orange (sesame seeds)
- 10 asparagus spears = 1 green
- homemade cookie dough = 2 yellow A, lots of t. of peanut butter, plus chocolate and sugar
- chocolate bar = CHEAT
- 1/2 c. quinoa taco meat + diced bell peppers = 1 yellow A, 1/2 green
- tortilla chips = 1 yellow B
Day 8 totals:
1 red (of 3)
2.5 green (of 5)
3 yellow A
2 yellow B
0 purple (of 1)
1/8th ? orange
LOTS of teaspoons of peanut butter
I really need to reign it in. And I plan to do so starting day 9.
I know I said the same thing on day 8, but day 9 will be different, I swear.
Because the number on the scale is going to start creeping back up if I don’t start FOLLOWING this meal plan more closely.
Tomorrow, I’m going to make sure I get all of my reds in before I even start thinking about extra yellow Bs or chocolate.
I spent day 8 evening chatting with Husband and alternating between Scandal on Netflix and the next book in my massive library book stack, Panic by Lauren Oliver. Very intriguing concept in this book, and even though it’s an easy read, the pages keep surprising me with unexpected character behavior and plot twists. I’m gobbling it up. Hard to put this one down.
I woke up a few minutes before my 5AM alarm on day 9 and immediately made some coffee and did some blog work.
My butt muscles have been sore for the past week. It’s not TMI because IT IS THE TRUTH.
BUT I made you a promise that I’d work out every single day, so work out, I shall.
Day 9 exercise = Autumn’s 30-minute Cardio Fix video. This is the hardest video in her 21 Day Fix series, if you ask me. I’m always DRENCHED in sweat afterward, and I avoid this video like I avoid the spidery crevices of my apartment. This workout was doable today, though, which was nice, because doable = body is more in shape.
That workout sapped all my energy.
But you know what sapped my energy MORE?
Feeling like a WHALE on day 9.
And when I hopped on the scale, I was – gasp! – one pound heavier.
I knew all of that bad eating behavior would catch up with me. You can only run off so much food.
FOLLOW YOUR CONTAINERS FROM NOW ON! – I told myself this while I leered at the number on the scale this morning.
So, that’s what I intend to do.
I had overnight oats for breakfast.
Then, I packed my salad and celery for lunch. AND I packed a serving of my Vega One. Because remember? I need to get those reds in.
It’s just…I’m so SICK of eating BEANS.
Because they are wreaking havoc on my digestive system in the way beans do. YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN.
I know that’s TMI, but I’m not doing this vegan Fix and then KEEPING the truth from you.
The truth is that my body hates all the black beans and chickpeas.
I’m starting to hate them, too.
Honestly, I miss chicken.
I drove past Culver’s at 7:55AM this morning and felt my mouth water at the idea of a chicken sandwich.
HUGE note to Vega One drinkers: do NOT let your Vega One sit after you mix it with water.
Usually, I add water to my powder, shake it up, and guzzle it down.
Today, work got in the way, and I let my shaker bottle sit for half an hour.
The shake turned into this gooey, mushy, blobby MESS.
I had to SWALLOW it as though it were slightly solid.
Because it was.
Are you officially grossed out now?
Me too, after recounting how disgusting my experience with congealed Vega One was.
MIX AND GUZZLE, my friend.
SO, I was EXTREMELY GEEKED for day 9 dinner.
Because I planned to eat P A S T A.
What kind of pasta?
Look at that! The only two ingredients in that pasta are lentils and quinoa! It’s a vegan paradise in that box!
Guess where I got that pasta?
ALDIS! Are you surprised?
I bought it a while ago, though, and Aldis is always changing up their stock, so I can’t guarantee you’ll find it in an aisle.
For my pasta sauce? Guess what I’m going to use?
I’M GOING TO USE MY VEGAN LENTIL HUMMUS!!!!!
I know, it’s mean for me to keep raving about my hummus without sharing the recipe. Well, I just decided that I’ll share it with you TOMORROW. Because you shouldn’t go a day longer than tomorrow before tasting the delicacy that is spicy red lentil hummus.
GUESS WHAT ELSE I AM GOING TO ADD TO MY PASTA.
And that’s not even the best part.
This dinner should be illegal. Especially since I can count the pasta as half a red, half a yellow A.
But this dinner is NOT illegal.
It’s totally 21 Day Fix-approved.
What I ate on Day 9:
- overnight oats = 1 yellow A, 1 orange
- celery sticks = 1 green
- (salad) 1 c. spinach + a few cherry tomatoes + squirt of Dijon mustard + 1/2 c. quinoa taco “meat” = 1 green, 1 yellow A
- Vega One shake = 1 red
- apple = 1 purple
- 1 c. pasta + 1/2 c. red lentil hummus + 1 c. portobello mushrooms + 1 c. cooked green pepper and sun-dried tomatoes = 2 red, 1 yellow A, 2 green
- sweet potato = 1 yellow B
- 1/2 sleeve of whole wheat saltine crackers = 1 yellow B
- chocolate bar
Day 9 totals:
4 green (of 5)
3 yellow A
2 yellow B
2 teaspoons of coconut oil (cooked mushroom and green pepper and S-D tomatoes)
LOOK HOW WELL I DID ON DAY 9!!!!!!!
Did you see? Did you see that I ate all of my reds and almost all of my greens? And that I didn’t eat chocolate until all my yellow As and reds were in?
I am SO proud of myself.
I am doubly proud of myself because, while I was home on lunch, I really wanted to toss some chocolate chips into some peanut butter and snack on that, but instead, I ate an apple.
And the apple was perfect. It was exactly what I needed.
NOW, you know I took pictures of the pasta madness I’ve been screaming about.
Here’s my step-by-step process for making Red Lentil Hummus, Portobello, Green Pepper, and Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta!
First, cook 1 c. of diced green pepper and sun-dried tomatoes in a coconut-oiled pan over medium-high heat.
Also, dump a lot of Italian seasoning and pepper on top of your green pepper/S-D tomatoes.
Cook until peppers are soft. Then, add mushrooms. Spray mushrooms with coconut oil, too, if you want.
Oh, did I mention? Cook your pasta. And measure out 1 cup of it.
Because the pasta box’s nutritional label lists lentils as the first ingredient, lentils are the MAIN ingredient. That’s how ingredient labels work. The sequence in which ingredients are listed depends on how much of those ingredients are in the food. So, for example, if my pasta lists lentils first, that means that there are more LENTILS in the pasta than anything else.
So, I measured out 1 c. of my pasta, and I am going to call it 1 red and 1 yellow A. Because I don’t know how much of the pasta is quinoa, it’s safer to “hope” the pasta is half lentil flour, half quinoa flour. So I’m kind of rounding up on my red here. Like always *cough*.
Once your veggies are cooked through, add 1/2 c. of red lentil hummus. (Recipe will be published on the blog tomorrow, I promise!)
Coat your veggies with the hummus and stir it around until the hummus is warmed through.
Then, add pasta! Stir. And then marvel at how ugly it is.
Pour pasta into a bowl and sprinkle crushed red pepper flakes on top.
Then taste your pasta and realize that looks are deceiving, because this pasta is BOMB.
The mushrooms, the tangy, umami hints of sun-dried tomatoes, the poppy crunch of green pepper, the creamy richness of the red lentil hummus, the firm chew of perfectly cooked pasta…
This is what life is all about.
Making BOMB a** pasta in your kitchen and wolfing the whole thing down before you even remember that it doesn’t have any CHEESE in it.