I like to challenge myself over the lent period. This year it was giving up chocolate and cheese. And it was pretty tough - not the chocolate part (that's actually pretty straightforward, although I had to turn down at least two very yummy looking and smelling slices of birthday cake).
Giving up cheese was hard! I chose it because I have been eating a lot, especially since Christmas...
I missed it really badly. Cheese is in a lot of my favourite foods like lasagne and macaroni cheese. I use cheese all the time in cooking - adding a small amount the dishes often makes it tastier. Plus, I've been finding new and amazing cheeses (a current favourite is gorgonzola).
One of the trickiest times was meeting friends at an Italian restaurant. I had to study the menu for a dish that wasn't either cheese flavoured or topped with cheese.
But it has been a positive experience and I've learnt a few useful things:
- you can cook without cheese! Fajitas, pasta bakes, etc all taste surprisingly good without added grated cheese.
- soured cream is my cheese craving substitute. I loved this stuff anyway, but in the last few weeks it has become my lifesaver for those I-really-want-cheese-now moments.
- sometimes it's good to be more adventurous with food choices, and giving up something you love certainly encourages you to do that.
- I do actually have some willpower. I was beginning to wonder (especially since I pretty much stopped running) if I had any left at all. It's good to know that I do!