I Went Vegetarian For A Week and This Is What Happened

Spring is upon us and everyone is beginning to make healthier choices to feel fresh and renewed in the warm weather. I have always tried to find new ways to stay active and tried new healthy food trends around this time of year, but one thing I have never done is cut out meat completely. This week I decided to take the risk and become a vegetarian for a week (something I never thought I could do). Here’s what happened:

Day 1: After today’s morning classes I usually would get a bacon egg and cheese from the omelet station at the Tully, but today I had to change it up. Although I wanted the bacon when I first saw it, I ended up getting two fried eggs and putting them on avocado toast. 12/10 would recommend this combo, I did not miss the bacon at all. For dinner I hit up the Tully’s vegetarian station which had a pretty good orzo with lemon.

Day 2: Normally when I go to the Stag for lunch, I get a sandwich with turkey or salad with chicken. I decided to go for a salad today, but I was still very tempted to fill it with grilled chicken. I ended up substituting my usual chicken with chickpeas which are a great source of protein. I initially thought chickpeas were kind of gross and that I would not be full, but they tasted just as great as the chicken would have and it did not leave me feeling hungry at all. At dinner I did not find anything at the vegetarian station that caught my eye. I did not want to eat another salad, but I did not want to load up on carbs either. I noticed it was kind of hard finding something good, but still vegetarian. I settled on making stir fry but I was hungry again later that night.

Day 3: After only 2 days of no meat, I’ll admit I was definitely craving it. I found myself thinking about what I would eat after the week was over. A burger from Plan B, chicken parm from Molto, tacos from Taco Loco; the list was endless. I was still toughing it out though, because although hard at times, cutting out meat did make me feel a lot lighter and energized. I had more energy during the day and even though finding the right meal sometimes was tough, once you make a great salad or slice of avocado toast, it makes the day so much better. Today I had two eggs, fruit, a granola bar, and salad for dinner.

Day 4: Almost done!! Today was a lot easier. With my avocado toast, smoothie from the Rec Plex and very colorful salad at dinner, there are no complaints here. I began to get the hang of the vegetarian lifestyle. I noticed I was not as hungry as I used to be anymore.  

Day 5: Today was the last day and it was almost bittersweet. I enjoyed my usual bowl of fruit with two eggs on the side and a salad at dinner. I felt energized and ready to take on the weekend!

Overall, after being a vegetarian for only a week, I was still able to see how it has its benefits. Besides forcing me to go for healthier choices, it forced me to become more organized and that is definitely something that I benefit from. I took more care when planning out when I was going to eat, what I was going to eat, and when I could fit in the gym and studying. Thinking ahead for all these things made each day run a lot smoother and allowed me to stay on top of everything I had to do. I tried foods I normally would not think of eating and I am going to include them in my diet from now on. Although I missed meat a lot and will be going back to it, I appreciate vegetarians a lot more. It takes a lot of dedication and planning and I give props to people who do it everyday.