Just thought I’d quickly update y’all on how it’s going…
Asher is hanging tough with me… I am so proud of that boy. He has been reading and researching the Daniel Plan website and has not only remembered what he learned, but is putting it into practice. Which is harder than it sounds.
His biggest challenge?
Staying away from white foods – white bread, white pasta and, his nemesis, white potatoes. But his fortitude is paying off. He’s found a new friend in whole wheat bread, natural peanut butter and all-fruit jelly. He has lost 11 pounds and has more energy than he has had in a long time.
My biggest challenge?
Staying away from sugar. Even though I have managed to stay away from obvious forms of sugar – which was a serious damper on my Valentine’s Day fun, let me tell ya – I find that even low-fat vanilla yogurt has enough sugar in it to make me crash afterwards. But I loooove it. So I need to find a replacement… ideas appreciated.
And I need to read my labels more carefully.
I also still really, really miss coffee. The Daniel Plan allows you to drink whatever you want – within reason of course – I have just chosen to stay away from coffee and sodas, and am sticking strictly to water. I am happy to report that I am developing a tolerance for water, if not a real affection. It helps that we have a pitcher full of filtered water in the fridge at all times. And that I carry my handy Fuji water bottle wherever I go. Bought it once and re-use the bottle every day to help track how much water I’m taking in.
This probably isn’t the cool way to do it. But I quit being cool about 20 years ago. And I’ve learned to live with it.
Another thing I’m trying to incorporate is exercise. Good golly, do I hate to work out. But there’s just no getting around it, exercise is good for you. So I’ve committed to 4 – 5 workouts a week, and I’m praying that it starts to get easier. And soon.
Go ahead and laugh, all you hard-core exercisers. I. Am. A. Weenie.
Other than the sugar in the yogurt affecting me negatively, and how stinkin’ tired I am after exercising, I’d say I feel significantly more energetic. And less moody, too. I really think my body is still getting over the years and years I sort of consumed whatever appealed to me, and drank copious amounts of caffeine and aspartame, but I’m thankful I’ve got the last six weeks behind me. The best is yet to come.
So, there you have it. I’ve lost 10 pounds and could really stand to lose another 10. By the time I hit the three month mark, I am hopeful that working out will be much more enjoyable, and foregoing my coffee will be much less painful.
And, although it might sounds like I’m waiting on a miracle, I have reason to hope. Rick Warren’s Daniel Plan study digs deeply into the Bible – about caring for our bodies, and honoring God with our bodies. And since He laid this on my heart and mind, I’m relying on Him in this. I just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
You have sooo much more “will power” than me!!! Very proud of you!!
Jolene (Homespun Heritage) says
Have you considered making your own yogurt? Definitely without sugar when you make it yourself! Its easy to do and I am sure your crew would LOVE it!
shelley smith says
Well, you wanted me to let you know what I decided to do….I have decided t stay on the FAST with dairy/eggs added. I also have switched to decaf coffee and have learned to really enjoy my one cup. I continue to see blessings come from the father. I still crave sugar and choclate, hopefully that will fade in time. Whole wheat really isn’t that bad once you submit. I am proud of Asher too, this is hard for even a truly disciplined person. Maybe he has more discipline than most adults. I like losing a few pounds as well!! I still haven’t tackled the exercise demon.
Thanks again for your inspiration and honesty.
Yay for you, Shelley!!
Like you, I am finding an appreciation for whole wheat that I’ve never had before 😉
Keep me posted on your progress, are you planning on sticking to this long-term?
Way to go!
shelley smith says
I would like to do this long term. I am going to concentrate on trying to hear what God would like me to do. If you are in need of a travel companion for your upcoming trip, I will volunteer my services as a sherpa. 😉
I sent you an email about something to try with the Daniel Fast.
Wow! I didn’t realize you were still doing this. Usually I’ve heard of people doing it for 21 days. In our Catholic tradition, we are about to embark upon another Lent. I have really learned to love Lent and to embrace sacrifice. So as of Wednesday I will be going caffeine free along with you (among some other things). I’ve been trying to wean myself off the past few days but I know it’s going to be rough. It’s a little discouraging to hear that you still miss it after 6 weeks because I am hoping to make this a permanent change with Christ’s help.
I know you aren’t really a food blogger, but any yummy ideas you have for meatless meals would be great. I’m going to be eating meatless most days during Lent.
Kim Swales says
I admire your commitment Stef. I am always trying to be healthier too through eating well and exercise but like you…I don’t really Love exercise.
Have you tried greek yogurt? I mix in some gluten free granola …YUM! Also Kate likes her with a drizzle of local organic honey (are you allowed that?).
Like your commenter above, I am praying about what to do for Lent. I have started one sacrifice already but am working on another.
Kim Swales says
I just wanted to come back to say that I know you are doing the Daniel fast to draw nearer to God not just for health. I only focused in the health stuff but I admire your spiritual commitment.
I admire YOUR spiritual commitment, my friend! I love how you bring the true meaning of Lent into focus yearly on your blog… can’t wait to see what you’re giving up this year.
I appreciate the Greek yogurt tip, will grab that next time I’m at the grocery!
P.S. And thanks for making me feel better about disliking exercise the way I do 🙂
Good for you! That is AWESOME! I gave up soda and tea for the entire year and it has been hard. But, I’m like you – drinking water has definitely made me feel better. The more I drink it, the more I crave it (I already liked water though – just liked a good diet coke too!). Keep up the good work!
ellie witt says
So impressed! I love to exercise but whenI did the Daniel fast it was so hard to exercise! Let us know what has changed in your life spiritually as well as feeling like you have more energy. I slept better while doing the Daniel fast.
Heather Peterson says
This may sound totally lame, but you made me CRY today! It just really inspires me that you are this person that makes decisions not based on your comfort. (11 kids) Giving up coffee is not on my list of to-do’s so I can only imagine what you are dealing with. I also HATE to exercise so I relate to that as well! You go girl! You really are setting an amazing example. I love it!
Not lame at all… totally sweet! And honestly, God has been tap, tap, tapping me for a while on all of this, I just finally LISTENED 😉
I drink Roastaroma herbal tea. Caffeine free by Celestial Seasonings. Has that coffee-ish flavor to it. I put creamed honey and milk in it just like coffee.
I don’t know much about the Daniel Plan, but as a substitute for vanilla yogurt, have you tried plan yogurt with sliced fruit? I usually do a banana or pineapple and melon, but I think just about anything would be yummy. I like to mix in some granola, but I’m not sure if that’s “allowed” for your fast. I eat it as a substitute for dessert frequently.
Plain greek yogurt w/ a touch of honey!
Hi Stefanie, Last summer after having a three day case of vertigo from thyroid issues I went gluten and sugar free and quit eating all processed foods(eating much like the Daniel Plan). It was the best thing I have ever done. I slipped up and stole some valentine candy from my kids and have been paying for it ever since. I can’t have any sugar in my diet. I even limit my fruit intake due to the crash afterwards. The funny thing is I was a coffee addict much like yourself. I only needed really one cup a morning, but didn’t feel like I could actually live without that one cup. Since I got rid of the gluten and sugar I have absolutely no desire for coffee. In fact, it gives me a metal like after taste if I drink it now.
So, I make tea instead and am content!
Keep up the good work!!
I’m a lurker just wanting to encourage you. : ) You go girl!
For the yogurt, get plain and then add a drop of vanilla extract, but don’t add sugar. It will be tart, but vanilla-ey! Or if all-fruit jelly is ok with you, mix a half-spoonful of that in–but that still might be too much sugar. I love plain yogurt with fruit, esp, blueberries and banana, so if you are doing whole fruits, try those!
And re: the water. Put a pitcher in the fridge with a little fresh lemon slices or sliced cucumber (or best yet, lemon cucumbers!). Orange would work well too. The water is oh-so-subtly flavored and so refreshing!
During Lent I give up sweets and tea, and last year gave up carbs in general, and it was tough, but I know it was really good for me, so I am doing it again this year. (not ready, though–too much “good” stuff still in the house! have to eat it all tomorrow I guess. ; )
Thanks for coming out of lurkdom, Blessed! Grateful for the tips, too 🙂
Blessings to you in the upcoming Lenten season!
Okay don’t be freaked out by this suggestion…RUNNING. It changed my life. I was SUPER WEENIE and then some. I started running with the Jeff Galloway program…”Half Marathon: You Can Do It” is the book that changed it all. You start with a run/walk/run method. You never get to where you are gasping for breath and feeling like you are going to die. Suddenly you are running more than walking and you don’t even remember when that happened. Running is VERY centering. It’s great for lean muscle mass and it helps you run after little munchkins who can scoot around much faster than we ever though they could!!! SEriously…Running. You won’t be sorry. And then when people say “Oh, you jog?” You can say..”No. I don’t jog. I’m a Runner…” *ahem* 😉 GO FOR IT!!!!!
Aaaaah. How I wish I could run. I used to run, many years and many children ago. But after running for several years, when I was finally up to being able to run more than 5 miles, my knee went out. Now I can’t run any distance at all without pain. And although I never loved running, I do prefer it to working out at home with a bunch of little eyes on me, all asking to go to the bathroom or pleading for a snack 😉
I second the homemade yogurt! It’s super easy in your crockpot (Yes, in the crockpot…go*gle it!) and you can add whatever you want. I add dry milk to up the calcium and make it thicker like greek. The kiddos balked at first, but now several LOVE it and others put up with it! The “put up with it” kid teases me about getting a cow on the balcony (We live in a very tall crowded housing tower) but I will not go back to buying the sugar-laden stuff. (:
Heading off to google it right now! Thanks, Melissa 🙂
No Greater Love says
Stephanie, Congratulations!!!!!! You are doing G.R.E.A.T.!!!!
I have made the crockpot yogurt…works like a charm. And you can just add fruit sweetened jelly to it. Yum!
Okay…I hesitate to write this, cause I totally want to encourage you…not be a bad guy….but, I keep reading that caffeinated coffee is really good for us. I can’t tell you how many articles I’ve read stating that. So, maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea to add coffee back in????
Yes, I’ve read that about coffee as well. But the Lord wants me to give it up – at least for now – regardless. Thanks for the encouragement, and I appreciate your candor 😉
International Mom says
A natural sweetner other than honey or fruit is Stevia. An herb that comes in granulated or liquid form. Can be found at any health food or vitamin store.
My husband and I have been doing a Daniel fast and on some days a juice fast as this seems to be a season for seriously seeking direction. My kids would agree I do much better when I’m on the Daniel fast than just juice : )
Whoa. How exactly do you DO everything! So inspired! I have tried the crock pot yogurt too. It was surprisingly rewarding. I felt like such a “Suzie Homemaker”.
I would encourage you to get a “real” water bottle to keep refilling. Many plastic water bottles leach bpa into the water over time, and just aren’t designed to be used over and over. And if you wash them in the dishwasher that breaks them down even more. Just something to check out.
Congratulations on these steps. WHAT brings you to health isn’t as important as just being there and respecting your body! Seconding Ali’s thoughts on the toxic water bottle though. Water bottles should be very washable and ideally stainless steel. Bacteria builds up in bottles very quickly and you never want to reuse it without a thorough wash and dry between. It is like drinking from a bottle of bacteria otherwise….gah.! 🙂
If you’re looking for a good BPA free water bottle that will help you keep track of water intake, and will help you down more water faster, I recommend the Contigo Auto Seal 1 Liter water bottle. When I was pregnant last year I had low fluid levels so had to make sure I was drinking enough and purchased both the Contigo and the CamelBak 1L water bottles. The CamelBak grossed me out when I found mold in the straw (I know, so gross, I don’t think I drank the mold though… I hope I didn’t). The Contigo has been my go-to bottle ever since and has withstood many drops on the ground, doesn’t leak, doesn’t get moldy, and has a useful carabiner clip.
Yay you guys! Suggestions for yogurt… I’m eating the Chobani plain Greek yogurt…you can get it in a huge container at Sam’s. I just add a little blueberry concentrate from the health food store (like…a tsp.), and some frozen blueberries. If I get REALLY excited, I might add some chopped almonds.
I’m currently using a Kleen Kanteen for my water, but only because zulily.com had a fab sale on them ages back and I got like four of them. Two big people ones, and two sippy ones for the hope chest. 🙂
I first read about the Daniel plan on your blog and since it is Lent, and I have been looking to make changes, my husband and I decided to take the plunge. I love the idea that God is part of it and we should use our bodies to His glory. That’s the part that has been missing for me, even though I have done WW’s and had success in the past. We also have read Dr. Andrew Weil’s books and this plan goes along with much of what he believes. I want to be around for a long time to see my girls grow up and taking care of myself is key to that – plus, at 49, I need the energy to keep up with twin 4 yr-olds! Thanks for the inspiration!