I was VEGAN for two weeks and it FCKN SUCKED

A few weeks ago, I took on a challenge of being a vegan for two weeks for the Australian Youth Climate Coalition’s (AYCC) fundraiser For the Love Of.  The objective is to give up something you love for two weeks and raise money to go towards educational schemes run by the AYCC. Generally, people gave up things like beer, chocolate or coffee (for those of you that gave up coffee – I applaud you). So obviously I wasn’t going to give up coffee, and I felt like giving up the others were a bit too easy.

Then I discovered that they had a 3degree challenge. Where you give up sweets, wheat and meat. It is these industries that largely contribute towards CO2 emissions and degradation of our environment.

The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report said we could see a temperature rise of between 3 and 4 degrees by 2100.

I’ve been a vegetarian since the beginning of the year (you can read about my experiences here). So I’d already done the meat thing. How could I challenge myself even further? Become a VEGAN for two weeks. Easy! (Or so I thought). As much as I respect people who are vegan, it’s just definitely not something I could adopt as a lifestyle. So here’s my pros and cons of being a vegan and why my two weeks as a vegan fckn sucked.

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First rule. Source

CON: Shopping takes twice as long

Going grocery shopping takes forever because you’re constantly reading the ingredients list on every product! It’s not always obvious that an item is going to have milk products in it so you’ve got to get our your magnifying glass and actually read the label. I’m sure that after a while you become familiar with products you can and can’t eat and the whole experience is much easier.

PRO: You actually know what’s in your food. 

Because you read the label on everything you’re buying, you actually know what you’re putting in your mouth. Something I rarely did before hand. Being a vegan meant that I reduced the amount of processed foods I would usually buy and opt for fresh food.

CON: It’s expensive

So I only did this for two weeks and couldn’t accurately compare the differences in prices, but I definitely blew the budget on my grocery shopping for those two weeks.

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Yummy smoothies! Source

PRO: You discover new tasty and healthy foods

Because you can’t go to your usual breakfast of skim milk with Weet Bix, cheese melt for lunch or pizza for dinner, you are forced to think outside the box. Especially when it comes to replacing items. Three things that I’ve continued to buy is Almond milk, Coconut milk and the Oats and Chia. I’ve never been the biggest fan of milk so switching to almond milk has made me feel a lot lighter and my tummy a lot happier. The Oats and Chia is absolutely delicious! I have it for breakfast with a banana every morning and it keeps me going for ages. And coconut milk is perfect for curries! Where have you been all my life? This is something I never would’ve discovered if it wasn’t for being a vegan for two weeks.

CON: I literally felt depressed

For these two weeks, I literally felt depressed. Not seriously, but I really didn’t feel myself. It could have been a mixture of other things, but I also think that my diet heavily contributed towards feeling pretty down. One of my friends told me that it was a type of withdrawal experience. Whatever it was, it really sucked.

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Stir Frys are delicious and really easy to make vegan. Source

PRO: I felt healthy and ate yummy foods

Because I was so limited on what I could eat, it forced me to think outside the box and create new dishes. I found that I ate lots of fresh veggies, fruits, rice and beans. There’s nothing nicer than cooking a meal from a recipe you find online and it actually turns out to be amazing! Pinterest will have you covered for all of your vegan recipes!

CON: YOU CAN’T EAT CHEESE!!!

OK so this was the breaking point for me. I love cheese. It goes on everything and with everything. And I love all types of cheese. And telling me I can’t eat cheese for two weeks, well damn I don’t think I’ve ever been so hangry for something before.

VERDICT

I raised nearly $100 dollars for an amazing cause and I’d like to thank everyone who donated! Climate Change is happening and adopting a plant-based diet is definitely a way to reduce CO2 emissions. For those of you out there that are vegan – good on you! I tried it and it just wasn’t for me. I’m a vegetarian for the time being but with my travels to France coming closer and closer, it may be something I give up whilst I indulge on cultural traditions of eating the finest French food ever (and that involves meat).

But it’s not all doom and gloom! The following TED Talk is BRILLIANT! He talks about how we don’t necessarily have to sacrifice milk or meat, but we just have to reduce the amount we consume. I believe that our actions can make a difference and that we should be mindful that our actions and the food we eat can have negative effects on the environment around us. But I also believe that we have to be in it together and we all need to realise that we can’t keep consuming the amount of meat we are at the moment.

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Source

 

 

 

 

 

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: APRIL

April – where did you go? I genuinely cannot believe how quickly April has gone and how jam packed it has been! With eating challenges, 21st birthdays, numerous coffee dates, several visits from friends and family and interstate weekend away it was a pretty great month. Work has been as crazy as ever, I’ve even picked up another job… but as the days fly by and I counted that there’s a mere 55 days until I fly out, I know that it’s all worth it! So, without further adieu, my favourite things from April!

Adventures with my sister

I was lucky enough to have my sister come down for a weekend at the beginning of the month. Because she lives in Newcastle, I definitely don’t get to see her as much as I would like to. So when she came down for the weekend, it was filled with adventures and shopping (of course). A highlight was going to Fitzroy Falls. ‘How was that?’ I hear you ask? Well from the few meters ahead that we could see – it was pretty amazing!

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Fitzroy Falls through the mist. 

For The Love Of Challenge

For the love of our future is a fundraising challenge to raise money to fund educational schemes and political actions regarding Climate Change. The challenge can be as simple or as hard as you make it. People will generally either give up chocolate, beer or coffee (to those that gave up coffee, I applaud you). I decided to go VEGAN for the 2 week challenge. Already being a vegetarian, I naively thought that it wouldn’t be that big of a leap. Oh boy was I wrong! Being a vegan is hard! You have to read the contents of everything! You need to think and rethink what you can and can’t have which requires you to always be switched on. I’m planning on writing about my experience so watch this space. Long story short – going two weeks without cheese is just wrong! On the plus side, I raised just under $100 for an awesome cause!

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For the love of our future! You can find more information here!

My friends

So it was our lovely Nicola’s 21st birthday this month – which of course is celebrated with alcohol! And lots of it! We went to Pepe’s (a really chic place across from North Wollongong beach). Whilst I personally didn’t have the best night because I was a bit overstressed and over tired (sorry Nicola), one thing I love is this picture below. This picture just makes me so happy. And it’s a constant reminder to surround yourself with positive people who will always be there for you. And I’m so lucky that I have these two as housemates and the rest of my friends that were there that night because I honestly wouldn’t know what I would do without you guys 😘

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So grateful for my friends!

Blog Blog Blog Blog Blog Blog….

This month I worked on 2 posts that I’ve been working on for a while now. And finally publishing them and getting the reaction that I did was so rewarding! Top 5 Cafes in Wollongong and Making a Promo Video 101. Blogging is something I absolutely love doing, but there’s nothing quite like when people are engaged and interested with what I write. So a quick and sincere thank you to all of you out there who are reading this and following my journey!

 

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PROMO VIDEO MAKING 101

Anna Johnson-Hill’s Get Shit Done!

So I have this ridiculously talented friend who has this ridiculously awesome business centred around helping others be the best they can be. You can check out her website here. But the best thing is that she just launched this awesome e-course called ‘Getting Shit Done.’ And me being the slightly lazy and easily distracted human I am, I signed up. We’re nearly done with week 2 and so far it’s been amazing! There’s sooooooo much unique content and she really knows what she’s talking about because she draws from her own experiences. This week has been all about self love and her module has really made me take a step back and think about what makes me happy and how I can realistically implement strategies to achieve my goals! Can’t wait for the next 4 modules!

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My weekend getaway to BRISBANE

For the long weekend, I decided I wanted to get away. And where else to go but a warm city that seems to be home to friends and family… BRISBANE! You can read all about my weekend away here, but long story short – My sister and I travelled up there together, we stayed with one of my friends and we ate our way around Brisbane. Catching up with other friends, long lost friends, family and new born adorable babies! It was the perfect amount of time to get away from the stresses of reality and just chill out, eat amazing food, drink wine and spend some time with great company!

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My sister and I at the Barvarian Bier Cafe overlooking the river. 

Tunes

There’s something about how sweet and simple this song is, that I am absolutely loving! At uni the other day, my friend and I were sitting on the lawn having our lunch and there was a guitarist performing. He then sang this stripped back version and I commented how lovely it was. My friend asked if I had heard the twenty one pilots version of it, and oh my gosh you should’ve seen the look on her face when I said no. Ever since then it’s been on repeat!

This tune by Jack Garratt is super chilled an lovely. The video clip is especially amazing! I’ve been listening to a lot of Jack Garratt lately and I’d highly recommend jumping on board! You won’t regret it.

Blogs & Vlogs

Sam Evans Life. A Sydney sider whose Youtube account exploded after hanging out with Fun For Louis. And naturally, I just had to check his stuff out. Turns out, that it’s pretty damn amazing! At the moment I’m especially loving the video below – an epic highlights reel showcasing all of the wicked stuff he got up to in 2015. He’s got a really unique style about him, his photography is on point AND… my home town of Port Stephens even features in his highlights reel! I’m absolutely loving following his journey and watching his vlogs develop. Killin it Sam!

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So this isn’t really a quote, more of a motto, but at the moment I’m very centred around being grateful. I’m so blessed to be where I am and surrounded by people who love and support me unconditionally. I feel like lately I’ve been stressed out due to work and planning my big trip, but I never want to lose sight of what makes me happy and that is the relationships I have with so many incredible people. I feel like I’ve said it a few times in this post already, but I am so thankful and deeply grateful for everyone around me and I hope you know that I am always there for you as well when you need a hug, someone to laugh at or laugh with, or someone to encourage you to pursue your dreams.

I hope you had an equally amazing month and hope that you have an even better MAY! xxx

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