Saturday, August 22, 2009

30-Day Throw Down!

BULLETIN UPDATE! How great to see so many coming in and wanting to do the healthy dance! Please don't forget if you've commented "I'm in," you need to click the "FOLLOW" button to be entered into the drawing for the $100 Amazon Gift Card (unless you already follow). If you're not sure, just click the follow button and it will let you know. THANK YOU!


So, I told you we were working on something. Here it comes. And I'm SO hoping you'll help me spread the word.

What Is It?

A challenge. And a chance at a $100 Amazon Gift Card.

Is It Complicated?

No, it’s simple and it’s free. It’s SO simple it’ll drive you crazy and you’ll want to add all kinds of rules and complicated information. I think simplicity is so simple it’s hard. Is that perfectly clear now?

This is a challenge for 30 Days – only 30 Days - to THROW DOWN FAST FOOD.

Launch Date: September 1, 2009.

(An “appetizing” example of the Not-So-Great American Diet.)


Are You Nuts?

Yes. Thanks for asking.

But we’ll eat healthier food, undoubtedly feel better, maybe increase our energy, or quit giving our scales a nervous breakdown every time they see us coming. Personally, mine is in therapy. It’s the least I could do after all the trauma I’ve caused it. I’ve also been known to avoid the doctor because people there insist on weighing me. Lately, I refuse unless they let me strip down to my underwear in the middle of the office. I didn’t eat my jeans. Why should I have to weigh them? Try it. They will never ask to weigh you again.

But I do realize I have a few issues. (See the answer to the question, “Are You Nuts?”)

Uh, How Do You Define “FAST FOOD?”

It isn’t only our favorite burger or taco place. It’s processed foods, too. Not swinging through “Big and Beefy – And That’s Just YOU!” doesn’t really work if we go home, throw a frozen dinner covered in plastic into the microwave, and slam a soda. That’s fast food from the grocery store.

My family and I wanted to see if we could MAKE ourselves, if only for 30 Days, know WHAT we’re eating and try to eat whole foods as much as possible. We already shop at Farmers’ Markets, buy locally grown most of the time, look for organic sources, and like to think we care about what’s going in our guts. Because trust me, when we look down, we realize…..they hold a LOT, so that’s important.

Okay, You Sound Holy. So, What’s Your Problem, Man?

We’re lying to ourselves. We are converts in our heads and total heathens in our guts. We still fast food it way too much. A pizza here, a cheeseburger there, a taco or burrito anywhere. And of course, my 14-year-old son’s favorite - imitation processed cheese product look-a-like that you pour over GMO (genetically modified organism) corn chips. (Any real relation to actual food is completely coincidental. Product restrictions may apply. Void where prohibited.)

And the reality is, when we do this, we don’t feel good. I mean, we REALLY don’t feel good. And why would we? What God put on this earth to feed us has been so adulterated, it’s hardly recognizable anymore.

Who Elected YOU The Big Food Sheriff?

I’m not challenging you because I have already arrived. I’m fat. I’m barreling down life’s highway seriously over the legal cheeseburger limit. I’m operating heavy machinery while in a pizza induced state. I’m driving while indoctrinated. I have allowed myself to believe that fast food and processed food can stand in as a decent substitute in a pinch. Well, I actually haven’t believed that for years but denial is a gift and it allows you to skip meal preparation or grocery shopping. And busyness and health issues offer yet more opportunities to fall by the wayside.

But this isn’t a beat-you-up, guilt inducing 30-day trek. This is a wake-up call. This is a belief that most of us can do almost anything for 30 days to improve our lives. Unless you don’t need to.

Maybe you live remotely and NEVER eat fast or processed foods. You are so far removed from this nonsense you can’t even identify with me. Maybe you grow your own food. If so, I’m in love with you and you have my undying admiration. May I stay with you for six months while I detox? It could get ugly. When do you want me?

But if your more like me than you want to admit publicly (and I am not offended if you prefer to act as though you’ve never even heard my name, not once in your whole life........including today), then you might want to do something about it.

The rules are amazingly simple.


DO THE BEST YOU CAN. (But no, REALLY do the best you can.) And if no one will do it with you, do the best you can. See? Simple.

How Do We Pull THIS off?

The first question my son asked was, “What if I’m with somebody else and their parents take us to a fast food place?” We believe, for the most part, unless the meal is laced with out-an-out e-coli, mad cow disease, a known allergen, or arsenic, one meal probably isn’t going to derail you. However, we advised him to make as healthy a choice as possible. Choose a salad, see if they have fruit, opt for grilled cheese, reach for water, try the yogurt.

And we aren’t saying don’t eat out at all. But choose a real-food restaurant if you do. Opt for salads with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing. Utilize real cheeses, not processed cheese products. Get whole cuts of meat instead of ground (at least it comes from only one source unless you know they grind their own on the premises). Go for the baked potato or wild rice instead of french fries. Avoid “farmed” fish and ask for wild caught. Share a fruit dessert or something dark chocolate. Or, in the interest of cutting down on sugar (another highly processed food), forego it altogether.

Daily, plan ahead with the old brown bag. Fill it with healthy, whole choices the night before. Include raw veggies and fruits. Choose organic and local, if at all possible. Say NO to soda, including diet. Drink filtered water or, if you just HAVE to, top it off with a little bit of fruit juice while you adjust to foregoing the soda. Cruise through your favorite coffee place and enjoy your daily cup-of-the-Joe, Americano, or tea, but blow off the cafe-latte-dahs and froo-froo drinks packed with sweeteners of all kinds.

Now, this is where it can get harder but, if at all possible, avoid factory-farmed meats and look to local growers, or those who farm sustainably and who have grazing cattle eating grasses and herbs, pigs that can forage and root, or chickens that are free-range. That’s how animals are designed to eat.

I realize this isn’t always possible with meat, due to costs. It isn’t for us either, believe me, but we try to eat meat like this if we find good bargains and sometimes we absolutely do. Every little change, and every meal, adds up – for your health…..or not.


Meal plan with fresh, whole foods as much as possible. Buy organic IF you can – buy local IF you can. The End. Keep it simple. If you can’t, make your best selections and say, “Yahoo!” because you’re still FAR AHEAD of the fast food game and your consistently moving toward better and better eating.

We can do this. It’s only 30 DAYS. Quit on September 30th if you’re suffering and feel miserable. (I’m betting you won’t be, on either count.) By the way, this isn’t a political idea. I have no hidden agendas. All my agendas are available for public viewing and parades, as well as limited soapbox and high-horse engagements. I am not a vegetarian and will not become one. You’ll go insane trying to convert me and I would hate that for you. I KNOW all the choices. This one is mine. But if you are a vegetarian, you are highly esteemed. Please send me recipes to make my veggies all that they can be and help them realize their full potential.


Now, if life happens, and it does, here’s your contingency plan: know in advance where you can find quick, healthier food vs. fast food. In some areas of California, Pizza Fusion offers organic pizza and sandwiches. Chipotle dishes up super fast service and healthy choices including offering meat from animals raised humanely and sustainably. (You’ll be AMAZED at their philosophy and their food when I post about it.) You might want to forego the white rice in their burritos and get more beans, peppers, onions, salsa, lettuce, and lean meat. And these burritos are huge. You can easily share one and cut your costs in half, though they are already extremely reasonable. Whole Foods has a salad bar with EVERYthing, though the prices can be a little steeper. Trader Joe’s has a salad-in-a-box for $3.00 or so. Look for organic any time you can. And these recommendations aren’t even the tip of the iceberg. Options are regional. Your thoughts are needed and welcome about what’s available in your area. Share what you find in the comments section or email me. I’ll post it here and we’ll help each other.

And if you’re concerned that you might find yourself caught between a rock and a cheeseburger, reference the advice to my 14-year-old son and then go one step farther: Plan ahead. Pull up the websites of the fast food restaurants you normally frequent and look at the calorie and nutrition content of their foods, ask where their meat is coming from, and find out how it’s prepared. Based on that, make healthier choices ahead of time.

These ideas will freak out the purists among us who won’t think this goes nearly far enough. But I believe in keeping the MAIN THING the MAIN THING. And this IS our main thing – for 30 DAYS. Nearly everything you read about healthier eating changes everything about your life almost immediately. Personally, that hasn’t worked for me. It’s often an “all or nothing” or “pass and fail.” But most of us can’t eat, won’t eat, or DON’T eat perfectly every day. This is a nod to real life. IT happens. If you fall off the wagon, RUN (you’ll burn a calorie), and get back on. Don’t let it leave without you. And if you fall off, you haven’t failed so DON’T give up. This is about the process. This is about 30-Day increments.

What Gave You THIS Hare-brained Idea?

One thing, among many others, was watching the movie “Food, Inc.” I highly recommend it and if it’s not already, it should be out on DVD very shortly. Through the years we’ve watched similar movies or documentaries and felt they were eye-opening. But in Food, Inc. I heard things I already knew, found out things I needed to know, and heard my own food beliefs echoed. I did chafe at an example they used which I felt was not well thought out. (I’ll talk about it and give them the FIX in my next 30-Day Throwdown! post.)

It got us talking and debating, and tickled our cerebellums, or amygdalas, or pre-frontal cortexes. Whatever it was, we found our brains still working and decided to utilize them. I required my kids to watch it as part of their school curriculum. I’ve been proselytizing about many of the ideas for years. But sometimes they (read I) need to see it and hear it from an outside source. It worked.

So, Is This a Food Blog?

Nope. Not even close. This is usually a humor blog, if I’m lucky. It’s about everything, and will continue to be. But every day of our lives includes food that fuels us, or not, so it seems relevant. And anytime we join together and support one another, it’s easier, more fun, and we’re accountable.

What’s In It For Me?

A healthier lifestyle. Being in touch with what you’re eating. Maybe losing some weight. Maybe not. You can still get fat on too much good, healthy food even though your body is better nourished. Trust me. I’ve gotten fat any way possible. (Considering portions is a good idea whatever you’re eating. And I’ve considered them. I just haven’t considered limiting them nearly often enough.) But this isn’t about changing EVERYthing. This is about changing a couple of things, making it doable, and taking first steps. When we end up evaluating ourselves at the end of 30 Days, we, our family, will continue on, adding more healthy habits in the aforementioned 30 Day increments.

You can come with us. In a year, we’ll be more aware, healthier, leaner, and we’ll even save a BOAT LOAD of garbage. (Think of how much we throw away with every fast food visit.) So it’s even a green idea.

Where Does The $100 Amazon Gift Card Come In?

If we do it, I truly believe we’ll all win. But one person, on October 1st, 2009, will win a $100 Amazon gift card. How you might ask? So glad you did.

1. Sign up to follow AND leave a comment saying you did. That’s a must. I’ll collect names everyday during our 30 Day Throw Down! and add them to the drawing. All you have to write is: “I’m following and I’ll do it!” Feel free to write more if you’re inspired. (The follow button is to the right – over the photos of other followers, and the comment button appears at the end of this post. Just click on it to comment. Sorry if that’s highly detailed but I’ve had people who truly didn’t realize how they CAN comment and I don’t want anyone left out.)

2. If you already follow, THANK YOU!! But you still need to leave a comment letting me know, “I’ll do it!”

3. If you BLOG about it on your site and link your readers back to this article by using this code - leave me a comment with a link to your post and, I'll enter you again! (I hope you deem this worthy of sharing with your readers.)

THE WINNER OF THE GIFT CARD WILL BE INTERVIEWED HERE ON THEIR MONTH-LONG JOURNEY AND HAVE A POST DEDICATED TO THEM. (Privacy and identifying details will be respected unless you love the limelight! Then, I’ll link everyone to your blog, if you have one.)

That’s it. Let’s THROWDOWN!! For 30-DAYS!

Copyright 2009 - 30-Day Throw Down! Copyright 2009


  1. Count me in! I think my husband will be glad to participate also. Your post is full of the truth. Last November I went on a no sugar no flour diet, lots of veggies and homemade-almost as thick as chili-soups...and kept it up for 3 months...losing about 15 pounds and felt and looked like a new person. I had a goal however, a new very expensive wool carder, (which hubby bought me, he's a sweetheart!) But..while out shopping in Feb.he came out to the car with a bag of very reduced Val.candy and thus began my downfall. Now I've gained my 15 lbs back and maybe a few more. This is a great challenge...I need help getting myself 'inhand' again. I just told him I needed an incentive to get started again...even with no gift card possibility I would join you thanks for thinking this up. Maggie

  2. I'm in too :) I won't begin to describe for you the "diet" we were on growing up, but it started when my mother decided to take all sugar out of our diet :) I truly can't eat much in the way of processed foods as it literally leaves me feeling sick! I'll find a day to post and link back to you and then I'll come back and tell you!!

    Fabulous idea and tons of research and effort went into this... maybe you can find a food sponsor? Healthy choice? Whole foods? Chipotle? I'll be excited to see what develops!

  3. Robynn, I'll have to come back today after my hike (I leave in a few minutes and got caught with this long post) and answer you. I am also in, but for me it's easy: I don't eat fast food and I am a "pescatarian" (only eat fish flesh, not pig, not cow, not sheep, not chicken, not turkey). I read "The Omnivore's Dilemma" and make a huge effort to eat local foods, I won't even buy yogurt that comes from out of state. But what I WILL do is become more conscious of where my food comes from and will get back to you with a report on Sept 20!!!

  4. Hi Robynn, I have posted about the Challenge and linked back to you. also became a follower of your blog. Thanks for this challenge. Boy, do I need it! I've been cutting back on shortening when baking...but thats not enough! Have a great day...=)

  5. I'm in! Great idea! And the motivator is fun too!

    We already buy our meat homegrown/grass fed from a local farmer and we did the processing ourselves. Our garden and Grandpa's garden provide a lot of extra's for our table, too. I'm going to keep track, you've motivated me. :D

  6. WOW! What an idea. I cut out fast food 2 months ago. If the family wants fast food, I opt for a salad. I think I'm in, or at least, I'll try. I've been making everything at home,cause I'm trying to control my husbands sugar, so this might not be to hard.

  7. This ones easy. I rarely eat fast food.

  8. What a great idea. Count me in too. I will do my best to follow this too. It's hard with a husband like mine who won't eat anything good for him. But that doesn't mean I have to eat that way too. I am looking forward to this already.

  9. I was nodding my head the whole way through like a bobble-head doll. You hit on a lot of the stuff that I've finally come around to over the past couple of months.

    I'm in... but I'm already doing all these things, so I see it more as a continuation of the status quo.

    Great job, Robynn. As usual.

  10. "I'll do it"...I eat for all the reasons you mentioned and a few you didn't!!!

    I've known for sometime now I have to change my way of eating, I've gained almost a whole person...up until 10 years ago I was a total health and exercise fanatic and loved it, I felt so much better than I do now, not to mention considerably thinner..things happen and life changes!

    I will do my best Robynn..

  11. I'm in! We mostly do this anyway, but I've been sewing, so being lacadaisical about it. I was planning on renewing my vim and vigor on September 1st anyhoo-how.

    A few tips from a 19 year veteran of diabetes...

    KEEP A FOOD LOG!! I can't stress this enough. I've done this for large portions of my life, and should have done it for all... my weight is NEVER a problem when I do this, and I always eat healthier. Have someone review your food log... I'm telling you, you'll drop your head in shame the day you chose M&Ms over an apple, but if you have the right mindset, you count it as a mistake, and do better next time.

    Also I try to always use my small plates and bowls when I serve our meals. It really helps!! We rarely use the big ones any more.

    And, really pay attention to the food pyramid... in fact, put it on your fridge. Then, when you go to get a snack or fix a meal, you can quickly evaluate what you still need (fruits/veggies/protien/wheats-wise) while you are standing in front of the fridge.

  12. Oh yeah, I was going to say... there's a really great, inexpensive butcher down there my sis buys all her meat from... if you want I can find the name of them out. I've been trying to learn to cook with the cheaper cuts of meat to save a little dough...

  13. I'm all for it! Another way to get MORE healthy idea's. There is soooo much to process. When I talk about it I get exhausted.
    Poor Kim L. last week at dinner, I think she was ready to pull her hair out. Great idea and challenge!

  14. AMEN, amen, and again I say AMEN!
    ROBYNN.......I'm with you! I am so much with you I've actually started this already nearly 100%. After being at a family bible camp last and not eating the best and then having digestive issues once home...the thought of a restaurant or anything over processed / nutrient deficient gives me the willy's!!!
    I'm going to POST your CHALLENGE on my blog - and lets see if I can accomplish the copy screen mode and put your link in like that...something new to learn. I always forget what my son or husband says how to do. I think I do it and it doesn't work..drats! And here's a link to read on my blog for YA' all to read ...this goes right along with Robynn's challenge. How one man lost 150 lbs gained his health back by heeding his mothers intuition and reading Dr. Westin A. Prices book called "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration" can read all about it at the link I left with directives to links.

  15. Fast food?? what the heck is that? There isn't a fast food join within 30 miles around here.
    I think fast food would be opening a can of something that we didn't plow up the ground, plant, hoe, water, pull weeds, pick, shell, freeze, or can the stuff.

    But really, I think it sounds like a wonderful idea.
    I am so thankful we are able to grow and eat so many of our foods here. I also believe it is why we haven't spend hardly any time in a doctor's office. And I do mean rarely!
    P.S. I do have a weakness for a pizza once in a blue moon, though!

    Great post.

  16. Oh Robynn........Chipolte is probably the best choice out there for eating out.....Hmm, I add that in from a previous posting of mine for the challenge!
    I'm off now to fill pint jars and water bath somewhere around 36 or so jars of organic chili sauce I've got simmering!

  17. Good luck to everyone ... I dont eat fast food ... I dont eat meat ... and if you'd like to come stay with me for 6 months to de-tox, you are more than welcome ... but be prepared to eat a lot of fish, veggies and fruit ...oh yeah and grains vs pasta

  18. Robynn,

    We love you for doing this, but of course we just love you anyway!

    I dont wish to be entered into the contest as I dont think it would be fair to others who make the change. You see we made the change away from processed foods as well as meat (which is terrible for your digestive system) after I read a book by my good friend Jill at Forever n Ever n Alwyas. Its called Breaking Free truths for healthy living.

    This book changed our lives, and with no excercise at all I have lost 36 lbs. already. The exercise is my thing now that i have just committed to.

    THis is a great challenge and its easier said than done, but if we can do it anyone can.

    So get on board people! Start putting the things into your body that God intended it to have. Fruits and vegetables! The things that he put here to grow for us. Not the things that others make that contaminate our bodies causing illness.

    Good Luck Robynn! I know you can do it!

    Love and Prayers,


  19. Count me in!


  20. I posted the throw down on my blog and even my hubby is going to do it with me:)Hugs Darcy

  21. Can I still do it if I absolutely refuse to even attempt to give up diet soda? It's the only thing keeping me awake these days (I hate coffee) and until they introduce injectable caffeine to the mass market it's all I got. Still, even if I'm disqualified for my Diet Pepsi addiction, I think I will participate. We don't eat fast food from a restaurant more than once or twice a month (I'm no saint-it's for budgetary reasons) but I do make a lot of frozen/prepackaged dinners and I've been meaning to get away from that lately and back to some good 'scratch' meals.

    I've also been thinking about returning to vegetarianism (just me, not the whole family). I was vegetarian for 6 years and I felt so good back then! Maybe I've just gotten older, but I really think that meat doesn't mix well with my stomach.

    Anywho, long ramblings short, if I'm not disqualified I'm in! And of course I already follow. And naturally I'm going to link to you either way because this is a fabulous idea!

  22. I'm in! I've been in training for this for 10 months, I think I am ready. ;) Though I know I will be eating once at Chick Fil A (boys getting their haircut) I do get the chargrill chicken and no fries. OK, I do eat 2-3 of Andy's fries. I am only human! Do cookies from scratch count?

  23. You know I follow you, often. And I am IN. I could really use that Amazon card, I still have one appliance I have to get, my K-cup coffee maker. I am gonna win. Actually we will all win if we get healthier. I am all about healthier.

    I will blog about this tonight and link to your post and I am also gonna post about it on facebook, if that's OK with you?

  24. I'm in on the 30 day throw down! Saw Food INC, eye opener. We need to change our eating habits. Its bad when it's cheaper to eat at McDonald's than to buy fresh fruits and veggi's...Shop at Farmers market's and buy organic! We have power at the check stand.

  25. No Fair!!!!
    We eat only traditional foods, per Weston A Price, and so never eat fast food.
    Oh well, I will let those that need to do this, join in.

    60% of my diet consists of saturated fats, so I am shrinking away!!! Ask me how!!!
    ps, Seeds of nutrition is my mother ;o)

  26. Maybe... OK? I'll let you know soon. That is a pretty big one for me. I NEED it but I want to commit if I do it.

  27. I'm typing through tears, Robynn, but they aren't from laughter although that's what usually happens when I read your post. I won't go into all the gory details (and there are TONS) but I will tell you that I'm using your 'challenge' as incentive to get off my 'pity potty' and get healthier .. and lose some weight. I will post your link on my blog and use your post/challenge to write about my struggle with weight. Thank you, dear friend, count me in!!

  28. I am in the doctor is putting me on a low carb higher protein and veggie diet for my arthritis and stuff, so it sounds like a good plan. Hubby says he is in too.

  29. Yo sista, you know I'm in! What a great challenge! I'm already working on menu plans for the month, so I won't be tempted to stray. Also on Sunday afternoons I'm preparing lunches and snacks for the kids for an entire week. That way it's already there, ready to go, in individual servings. Plus, I've tossed any packaged c-rap from my house so we can't grab the junk in a moment of weakness. I think being prepared is the key. But I still have to keep practicing these efforts, it's not always easy.

    Game on!

  30. Your idea has come at the ideal time for me. I'm currently forcing myself to exercise daily for one week on my stationary bike and at the end of the week I'll see how I'm feeling and take things from there. After a battle with breast cancer, I know I need to live a better life.

    I've already begun to eat better and think about food before I eat it (novel idea, no?)and knowing that other people will be doing this with me will help.


  31. Robynn

    I'm following and I'm in! Our spring starts on September 1 so it is a perfect time for me to start shedding a few kilos (goal: 8kgs). I have a walking partner and we have a 5km route that we walk (when the weather is good, 5 days a week).
    Bring it on! I've just declared on my blog that I must stop trying recipes that I see on blogs. Honestly there is some goooood food out there to be made and had! we will eat healthy, whole foods and see how we go.

    Cheers - Joolz

  32. My family would never give up fast food! LOL

    Have a good Friday.

  33. here is the link to my blog post

    and I also plurked, twitted and facebooked a link to the blog post as well.

  34. I'm already a follower Robynn and you can count me in!

  35. Robynn, between you and good ole Aunt Kathy...I may just be able to do this.

    Soooooooooooo, without further ado,
    I'm IN like Flynn!

    And you know I'm a follower, as hard as you might try - to throw me off your trail.

  36. I blogged it here Robynn - wish me luck! Hey, if things go really well, maybe I'll even post before and after photo's. *Snort* If'n you believe that, I've got some property you might be interested in! LOL

  37. I feel like I'm cheating saying I'll do this... you know, since I can't leave the house I never go get fast food :) This is the easiest challenge in the world!

  38. Hmmm. Have you been talking to the Hunter. You know we don't buy meat at the store? Any way. I'll try. I don't eat out much. It's just I usually eat what the baby eats. Hot dogs, baked chicken nuggets, mac and cheese. You get the picture.

  39. Robynn...I'm still too new at all of this!
    Ok... I posted the link to your blog post on my blog., I don't know how to post my "post link" back to you! lol lol!!!! SO here is your notice! I blogged it! Ha Ha Ha!!
    Kim Ps Kay Kay's going to be with us on this adventure as well. She's such a good girl!!

  40. SASS, just take my name out of the hat right now. I'm not sure I could live for 30 days without my Velveeta and Rotel dip with taco chips... maybe a week...

    Ms. Thang, I was born and raised in Oklahoma, with fried food and Butter with a capital B. and you have the nerve to ask me to give all that up? Why not just make it easy and ask me to cut my own throat... and I'm getting an invite to dinner at some new friends home next week... what if they serve pizza... Oh, right. It's just one meal. Run on my wounded knee and jump my fat heinnie back on the wagon. Who are you talking to here, 50 year olds?

    Well all I can say is it takes some nerve to ask something like this of an old woman who has eating habits set in stone...

    You do know I'm pulling your leg don't you? Except about the Velveeta cheese dip... oh, man. Okay, Robynn, I'll try. But don't expect too much, alright? I'll try. I'm no cook but I can cook a pot of beans. I'll just have to remember not to cut up hot dogs and put them in...

    You are a brave woman, I'll say that for you.

    Love you SASS! Even if I do a lot of lutating (the w.v. word)


  41. ROBYNNNNNN.. I just remembered I've got a wedding to go to in September... My niece (one of many)and the reception is at the Ft. Worth Club not to mention the wedding cake.

    Crap. This is going to be work.


  42. Holy cow woman! 41 comments and counting! I'm not sure I'll do it, but I'll talk to the fam.. At least Kevin would have to do it with me! It's a great idea. I have quit caffiene except for one minor jump off of the wagon! Scary, but I'm going to think about it. Glad I have 'til Sept. 1!!

  43. I'm in! (and I already follow)I am glad I have a few days though, being sick my shopping and good eating habits have disappeared. If I am not better by Sept 1, I have bigger things to worry about!!

    My word verification is "bless"!

  44. I'm a follower now, but I'm not sure I can be in. I have no problem avoiding the fast food. I pretty much only eat it during road trips a few times per year. The processed food bit I am trying to get away from. But I cannot give up my Coke Zero each day! I know my limits!

    Best wishes for your 30 days; it is such a great idea!

  45. I just clicked the follower button and I AM IN!!!! This week the county fair is 3 blocks from my house and I am feeling the PAIN of bad choices, and that's only once a day! YIKES!!!!! I will be blogging about you, but I think a picture of one of my discressions from the fair would be quite telling. As an added piece of info, the author Kingslover addresses some of the food selection issues and has been recommended to me as a life changing must read. It's the next book on my list.

    THANK YOU for giving me just one more reason to put ME first.

  46. You do write it so well. I am totally in...I do make all my meals though...well gosh football season is coming up and guess which male person of this family will want coke and pizza????? male person. Just saying.

    I am in on this..and well I follow already.

  47. I wrote you up here woman :)

  48. Hi All!

    THANK YOU for your tremendous response and enthusiasm! I am excited to think about how we'll be encouraging one another. Even if you don't feel you can do this "perfectly" DON'T STRESS! Success doesn't look like perfection. I really do hope we cut out the fast food. Period. Processed foods are harder because the category is so broad.

    For instance, canned tomato sauce is a staple here and will continue to be, along with canned beans, etc. I buy the organic variety but these are still processed foods. However, that looks far different than frozen burritos loaded with meat from who-knows-what country, fats that will kill us, and ingredients I don't recognize without a food dictionary sitting by my side. If there are more than six ingredients to describe what's IN the package you're about to purchase and you can't tell what they are, you might want to consider passing.

    If you CAN'T do the soda - do everything else! (Don't let that derail you - you never know how healthy changes today might change your mind about soda tomorrow.)

    And "Can I still have a cookie?" was a question. Nothing is off-limits. This is guilt free. But sugar is hard on the body and is highly processed. So if you can't eliminate it (and I know I won't at every turn), restrict it as much as possible. But don't beat yourself up! That's a recipe for failure and that's NOT what I'm cookin' up here!

    LOVE all the comments, questions, and ideas. Please bear with me as I keep reclocking the post over the next few days to give all the new visitors a chance to get the skinny on the info.

    OH! And just in the event you don't want to participate but still think it's worth passing on, I greatly appreciate you giving your readers and friends the chance to be part of this fun and healthy group effort. :)

  49. That's a great idea Robynn. People in Europe do not have the same eating culture as American people, although even here fast food chains are becoming more and more popular. But we don't go out to a fast food restaurant to have breakfast like you folks. If we do go out for breakfast, they tend to be a lot more balanced and healthy.

    But being more aware of what we eat, cook from scratch with healthier ingredients is indeed a great lifestyle!

  50. Great idea! I have the feeling that you guys over in the US have much more access to processed foods and fast food. We have a pizzeria that bakes pizzas in a stone oven the old-fashioned way - and that's it!

    We don't buy processed foods, unless you count soya sausages - which are almost impossible to make at home!

    And as vegetarians, I think we more naturally migrate towards lots of fruit, veggies and organic foods...

  51. Robynn, You're Brilliant! I'm in! We don't do fast food often, but have been known to grab a bowl of chili at Wendy's from time to time. I've recently read the book "Real Food" and well as two books by Michael Pollan, and it's stunning what's going on with the food chain!

    Also, I'm now totally looking forward to my next doctor check up so I can tell them that I want to remove my jeans before being weighed. :-) I especially want to say your line about, "I didn't eat my jeans, why do I have to weigh them!" Oh man, now I'm laughing again.

    In closing, I'm so glad you stopped by my blog tonight. Your posts haven't been appearing in my Google Reader, so I didn't know you had been posting! I'll play catch up tomorrow!

    Again, BRILLIANT idea to put out there into the blogsphere! Perhaps my scale will also come out of rehab! :-)

  52. Oh, what a great idea! I wish I had thought about it...LOL. I am IN!

    On a totally off-topic note, comments are working now. Sassy and I have both checked how it looks in IE no wand can see it fine. And my sister can as well. Not sure what is going on with yours, wonder if it is screen settings. Will keep playing around with it since I still have a couple of other tweeks to make.

  53. Robynn you are amazing. I love your ravings.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog with your encouraging words.

    Many Blessings
    B.J. Brooks

  54. Okay. I'm in.
    But I may be delusional.
    Because it is 5:56 AM and I'm not hungry yet. Or near a Panda Express.
    But I'm in.

  55. Hi Robynn ~ I'm DEFINITELY in! I was actually eating leftover pizza while I was reading this (at 8:26 a.m. I might add!). This is a perfect jump-start for me and knowing others are doing it, too, makes it more fun and encouraging. My husband works for a grocery chain here in St. Louis so that's where I shop out of loyalty, but there are plenty of healthy choices and alternatives to choose from, so people should be very encouraged that they can buy most of their things (even local things) from a major chain! LOVE this idea and I'll post in a couple days on my blog and let you know when I do. Thanks for doing this ~ ♥ P.S. I'm already a follower. ☺

  56. At this point, I can't commit to this. While I AM working on cutting out the processed food, etc., I won't cut out my morning Diet Dr Pepper unless I don't "need" it. Quite simply, I'll stand with you, but my focus is a bit different. Right now, my focus is to eat healthier, one step at a time, which does correlate in several places with what you're doing, it's not the same thing. But know that I won't be making as many trips around the local fast food restaurants!

  57. Being the rule-follower that I am, I did the "follow" thing even though I don't really use it, and just use my Reader. I'm in!

  58. Thanks to Aunt Kathy for sharing the Throw Down on FB; I am IN!

    Haven't seen Food, Inc., yet, but am looking forward to it. There are also two books recommended by the Humane Society of the US that are along the same lines that I want to read.

    We can do this! Especially now when the local farmer's markets are full of such wonderful goodies. I'm blessed to be able to walk a few blocks from work on Tuesdays to bring home a bag of such wonderful things as beets, radishes, red butter lettuce, oyster mushrooms, corn, basil and cilantro. It's fun trying new things!

    Thank you, Robynn! Thanks, AK!

  59. Count me in.

    I have to admit that the non-farmed meat will be a problem (my future son-in-law raises pigs . . . about 10,000 a year), so . . .

    The funny thing is that we do a WW@Work. I am the coordinator for our workplace. Because we couldn't accomodate a meeting this week, I "challenged" our group to a simple seven day challenge from this past Tuesday to our next meeting. It consisted of us trying not to have any of the following:

    ~High Fat Dairy
    ~Low Fiber white flour products (white rice, white/bleached bread, pasta, muffins, bagels, etc), ~Refined sugars - (doughnuts, cookies, candy, ice cream and non-diet sodas, there are also refined sugars in many food items you would not be aware of crackers, canned soups, salad dressings)
    ~Fast Food, chips, etc.

    The challenge being that we would all eat healthy, fresh, fiber rich foods.  Go to this link to find WW's filling foods All the foods on this list are, low fat, full of fiber, unprocessed, and very filling - not to mention delicious. These foods are what we should all be focusing on. 

    Out of fifteen people, only two of us agreed to the challenge. Amazing. And the biggest challenge was the fast food. Seriously, these people pay a weekly fee to go to Weight Watchers and they won't give up fast food. LOL.

    My new most favorite place is Panera Bread. I get a soup (usually the french onion or veggie black bean) and an apple with iced tea.

    Anyway, I am up for the challenge. I will blog about your challenge and will send you the link.

  60. Robynn,

    I have blogged about your challenge. You can find it here.

  61. Good for you!! “I’m following and I’ll do it!” But, I have to admit - I don't eat fast food! I will have to give up my Cinnamon Dolce' Latte's - AHHHHH!!!! But I've been needing to cut back on the sugar anyway. Maybe I'll just get latte's with no sugar or I'll add my xylitol.

    This could really get some people started on some great habits.

    I wrote down the name to the movie you mentioned. I love things like that. Have you seen the movie, A Beautiful Truth. VERY good!

    You should come up with a 30-Day Throw Down Button! I'll put it up on my blog if you do. Let me know.

    Have a lovely day! (and you ARE funny!)


  62. Oh Darlin'.... count me in. I don't know how I'll hold up to the challenge (after Costco and all) but I will give it the old college try - I swear it! If you can do it... so can I, because we have the Eagle powers, my friend!!
    I've been at a cross-roads myself, after reading Barbara Kingsolvers "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" and we've made some fairly big changes around here already... but this may just be the kick in the pants I need to take it a step or 2 further.

    I'm full of trepidation, because I know that it's gonna be hard, but hey... with the fast-food diet I've been eating, (it HAS been cut down considerably after AVM - (see above) but I guess being full of trepidation is better than being full of crap!
    So yes...I'm putting my money where my mouth is! Or the cart before the horse, or carrying coals to newcastle or whatever.

    C'mon girl...Let's DO THIS THING!!!

    (and posting on Lib's and not yours yesterday? Connection probs... pure and simple. It made me go to bed in a snit, early last night... which was a change of pace from going to bed in my jammies like I usually do...

    wv... "holie" which I'm gonna take as a sign, eh' my sweet "slipping toast under the door" friend?

  63. Count me in. Since I enjoy a big garden and we raise all of our own meat I almost feel like I'm cheating here. And it's amazing how much you can do with fresh milk from your own cows. Cheese, yogurt, butter etc etc.

    I think I'll have to work on portion control. That a challenge for me and I definitely need to lose a few pounds.

  64. I DID IT! The post is up and I'm getting set to summon my Eagle Powers!

    wv? ables

    We are ables to do this my friend!!! Now get that corn outta my face!

  65. I pretty much stay away from fast food and do my best to stick with the fruits and veggies and organically grown meats. It's rough when I deploy with HSUS - Humane Society - (I'm a volunteer with them) - recently went to Texas to bust a puppy mill - and there is NO TIME for anything but fast food. YECCH! I really feel how quickly it trashes my body. Read about my most recent adventure here:

  66. I'm in! Thanks Robynn its just what I needed! Oh and of course I follow! Its been a tough year for me, I'll be glad to get back on track!

  67. oh by the way I blogged about it too!

  68. What does it say about me that I was eating a burger, fries, and a coffee milkshake as I logged on to your blog? I had NO idea what was ahead of me!


    Okay, *whispering*... I'm in.

  69. I've also blogged you too. Work it, work it :D

  70. Eight years ago I moved from living in central London to a small, sleepy island. I hadn't foreseen the severe withdrawals I'd experience from being wrenched away from my millions of take-away's and favourite restaurants!

    We inherited a mature,large garden which already had virtually every fruit and vegetable introduced to it, plus it has an enormous greenhouse here, too.

    I leaned how to can and bottle the overspill, and we discovered the delights of organically "fresh from the garden to the pot" produce. All our meat is grown locally here. I stress, we never gave a thought to what we ate before this was thrust upon us.

    I am just under 50lbs lighter now than when I lived in London - and it's made a huge impact on my health and happiness. I still indulge in far too much wine, and I smoke too, so I am far from a health freak - but I definitely know we are what we eat, and I would never go back to our old ways again.

  71. I'm one of those annoying people who hasn't had fast food in years and grows my own food. At first I craved it and missed it and now I don't. I hope I can still enter.

  72. Oh dear that's a hard one! I LOVE me some taco bell! :)

    Happy sits day saturday sharefest! :)

  73. Sorry to be dragging up the rear once again. Seems that's all I do lately.

    It's been a tough roller-coaster week (lost a dear friend one day, welcomed a new baby into our extended family the next!). My part time job is ramping up and I'm getting so far behind with blogging, that I think I'll never catch up!

    OK, to the issue at hand--of course I'm in! I gave up fast food years ago so this should be easy. The hard part for me will be to start exercising again! But, I'll do it!

    Trouble is, if I'm so lucky as to be the winner of the drawing, I won't be around to find out! I'll be out of the country in October! Oh, well. I'm not gonna worry about that! Just count me in. And when I can get back to blogging again, I'll put a link up to your challenge!

    So glad you took the bull by the horns and are doing this, Robynn! We ALL really do need this!

  74. I'm in. I've struggled with this for years. And I became a follower.

  75. I am in. My family has reverted to fast and easy since I went back to school, and we have stayed there ever since. It is time to eat more vegetables and fewer from-the-box foods. 30 days isn't really that long, is it?

  76. It's sad, but I don't know if I can do it. I love grease too much. but man, I need to do it.

  77. I never saw the movie, but I've been serving my family identifiable foods for years. With 9 kids I refused to spend the outrageous amount of money it would take to stock my larder with twinkies and ring-dings and oreos, and my kids are pretty sure I've caused them misery in their lives. In the last few years, I've become angry over sliced bread (it's my 2nd son's fault, because he throws out everything that's one day before its "sell by" date and hollers as he does so, and everyone refuses to eat not only the heels but the first or last 2 slices in a loaf, and I'm sick of them throwing out that much money) so I make my own. The kids bellow, I tell them to buy their own. I do believe the last time I went through a drive through was 1993. Great challenge, get more people eating like I do!

  78. i am folling and i will do it my mommy told me i had to lol

  79. WOW Robynn..this posting sure hit the comments "Bigtime"!

  80. "I’ve also been known to avoid the doctor because people there insist on weighing me..." This is me!!!

    I really need to do this and think I will BUT!!! the part about the sugar..."in the interest of cutting down on sugar (another highly processed food), forgo it altogether." ~ This part frightens me a LOT!!! Do you think I'll die???

    I'm going to play BUT! the sugar part....I don't know. Do you really think that is a good idea? Forgo it all together??? YICKS!

    Oh! I follow ~ Who doesn't?
    and I'm in

  81. What a great idea and kind-of ironic (for me at least). I hadn't had fast food in over a year before I got pregnant. Once the morning sickness hit, I couldn't eat anything but fast food. Don't ask why because I don't know. And now I'm at least 10 pounds heavier (that's not all baby weight either - it's Taco Bell weight) and I'm getting back to my "normal" eating. It's good to be back.

  82. I posted this a while ago, but here is the link to my blog mention~

  83. Just letting you know that I'm gearing up, looking forward, and I'm hardly even gnashing my teeth anymore.
    Well yes I am, actually. I'm gnashing like crazy. What in the world was I thinking, especially with this coming so soon after my 14 Costco drought?
    I have ALMOND ROCA here and I either have to become a glutton and eat 2 pounds of the stuff in the next few days, or give it away to someone... because my willpower left town along with my taut tummy, years ago.

    I just hope I still love you after this first 30 days.

    My w.v: peretem

    My chins? Why yes, I have a peretem! ;-)

  84. Well, I have to say I am already probably about the healthiest eater I know, DH calls me a food snob because if it isn't fresh & healthy I won't eat it. I have always despised fast food, the only drive through I go to is the coffee shop & only Americanos! LOL! so there isn't much else I can do-unless you think I should give up chocolate?? It isn't fast food is it Robynne! I already cook from scratch, no fried foods & lots of fresh[organic if possible]fruit & veges, avoiding red meat, use olive oil no purchased salad dressings!
    But I can be EVEN MORE careful I suppose.Love Trader Joe's & Sunflower market & the roadside stalls whenever they are around. Good luck to everyone else who is inspired to choose better food options, America needs this.I will post about it & let you know.

  85. Count me in, I'm following! :) I've been needing a "nudge" to get healthier! :)

  86. Do you realize that because I'm in Australia, I'm a day AHEAD of you?
    Does this mean that I can start a day later than I planned, or should I start nn the 1st and just say neener neener?
    I gotta say, that pic of a typical take-out meal is looking better and better to me, but I AM having a simple Denver Omelette tonight... I swear by all that is Nacho!

  87. I am in the same boat as one of the other commenters. I hope you don't mind me joining in.

  88. I forgot to say: I’m following and I’ll do it!

  89. I've really enjoyed having a look around your blog today, keep up the good work!