It's a very slow process - two steps forward, one step back - but I'm inching in the right direction. - Rob Reiner

April 05, 2011

Soft Skin and Final Vegetarian Recap

Yesterday I came home to a beautiful package in the mail from Coy at First in Philly.  Coy swims and like most of us deals with the dry skin that comes along with the pool (and winter too of course).  She tried the new Dove Nutrium product and loved it so much she wanted to give a bottle away.  Wahoo for me – I won the bottle of Dove.

Look how happy I am with my bottle of Dove!

Isn't this a pretty package?  I thought it was cool!
I just tried it out for the first time this morning.  It does make your skin feel very soft.  It promises noticeable results in just 1 week.  I will let you know what I think about it after I’ve used it for awhile.  And who knows, maybe I’ll keep it going and giveaway a bottle as well.

If you don’t follow First in Philly – well then you totally should be.  She’s really funny.  She does awesome things on the treadmill – like the number below and she’s also trying to run distance in her VFFs.  Check out her blog!

Hope she doesn't mind me stealing her blog pic :)
Well, as most of you know I declared the month of March as “Michael’s March Madness Vegetarian Challenge”.  I was vegetarian from February 27 – April 3. 

So, I’m sure the biggest question is – am I now a vegetarian?  No, I am not.  I hope this doesn’t disappoint some of my vegetarian/vegan readers.  However, although I do not plan to call myself a vegetarian, this challenge will completely change the way I eat and feel about meat. 

During the entire time period I felt great.  I had tons of energy and I never felt like I was missing out on anything.  I posted some great run times and have been training regularly.  So I know it didn’t impact my training and if anything it honestly boosted my training.  My biggest issue with being a vegetarian was convenience.  I know that’s a pretty lame excuse, but it was difficult to eat out.  Sure there are salad options at almost any restaurant, but sometimes you want something other than a salad, and at several restaurants that was pretty much your only option.   I enjoy eating out and spending time with my husband, family, and friends – it’s just part of what we do.  I hated being the person constantly trying to find some place “I could eat”.  I got that question a lot when we went out, well “where can YOU eat?”.

While I am not going 100% vegetarian; I will probably now consider myself semi-vegetarian.  I realize  that I do not need meat everyday to survive – and certainly not at every meal.  I will eat meat on occasion, but it won’t be part of my everyday nutrition.  I loved trying new foods and coming up with creative new dinner recipes like my “Chipotle Inspired” burrito bowls.  This was one of my absolute favorites and mostly healthy (it would be healthier without the cheese and sour cream – but yum).  It’s just brown rice, black beans, fajita veggies, pico, roasted corn, cheese, light sour cream, and homemade guacamole (just an avocado mashed up with some salsa and lime juice).  I also made my own tortilla chips.  I took some corn tortillas and lightly brushed them with olive oil, sprinkled them with some sea salt, cut them into wedges, and baked them in the oven at 400 degrees for like 5 minutes.  They were great.  This was also one of Jim’s favorite meals.

Burrito Bowl without Chips

Burrito Bowl with homemade chips (color isn't very good)
 I can’t say I won’t eventually become vegetarian full time, but for now I am officially semi-vegetarian.  I really loved the experience, and I’m so glad I did this.

What do you do to keep your skin soft after hours in the pool?

What new changes have you made to your diet/nutrition plan?


  1. I have this great Origins lotion that my MIL gave me for Christmas and I love it (when I remember to use it...keepin gmy skin soft isn't really a proirity for me...opppps.)

  2. Congrats on the months. You are now a flexatarian. I am thrilled that this experiment has allowed you to view food differently as that is what it did for me.

    Just made Mexican Breakfast Tower. Will post recipe on Friday in the Mexican Challenge.

  3. I don't venture near a pool. :o)

    I seem to have been incorporating more cookies into my diet lately. Not good for me but they taste yummy.

  4. I'm calling myself a flexitarian! My fiance is a vegetarian though so I'm trying to meet him in the middle! :) I even did a blog post about this whole subject:

  5. First of all - what a cute picture of you - I love your wavy hair! I have been cross training in the pool 1 to 2 times a week and totally get the dry skin and hair, I'll have to look into the new dove.

    Congrats on your month of Vegetarianism. As you know, the other half of this, Sal, is a flexitarian (she eats fish). When I started weight watchers online a few weeks ago, I actually went a few days (not necessarily consecutively) but a few days without meat and just on vegetarian meals. I really enjoyed it and felt great. But like you, I won't stick with it on a full time basis. It's more of a convenience thing in going out to eat and cooking with my husband. But it is nice and freeing to know that I don't NEED meat and can feel great without it.

  6. that burrito bowl looks so delicious!! i think i know what we're having for dinner tomorrow night ( :

  7. Coy is awesome. She's really funny.

    I you ever get sick of people telling you how young you look. I suppose not. I know I wouldn't.

    My soft skin? Puh-leaze. My skin is not soft nor do Manly guys buy skin products. Actually, they probably do. I am just a dodo for not taking care of myself.

  8. No skin issues because i don't go near the pool unless injured and pool runnng. Even then I don't put my face in. Hope you like the Dove!
    Nice job going veg for March. I eat very little meat without thinking much of it. My veggie-centric regimen is in full swing...becoming a habit I hope!

  9. I don't know if I'd ever want to try to be a vegetarian but it sounds like you learned a lot from your experience!

    Just a tip: I grew up swimming and player water polo competitively for over 12 years. One of the best things you can do for your hair before you get in a chlorine pool is to soak it/rinse it in cold, clean water first. It closes the hair follicles and helps protect your hair so that they hold the CLEAN water and not the nasty chlorine water!

  10. I used to be a swimmer, a serious swim 2x a day my hair turned green kind of swimmer and for the skin the best was baby oil in the bath or shower, bath works better. now I use bath and body works SPA shea butter. I have crocodile skin and it works.

  11. Hey!!! Gald the Dove arrived in one piece! I taped it up at the end because I was mortified that you would be wiping the Dove cream out of the inside of the package :)

    That bowl of goodness looks great at the bottom of the blog! I love black beans and rice!

    Let us know how you like the Dove!

  12. You have beautiful skin!!! =D I could use that stuff...but just because it's dry here, and to plump up my wrinkles....

    Great job with the March Madness. I stopped (long ago), largely for the same reason. I'm happy it made a positive impact for you!

  13. Great job on your March Madness! The burrito bowl looks yummy!

  14. I am a guy, and I dont think about my skin after the pool, I should

    I love meat, I use to love it alot more, like I wont eat a meal unless it had meat. This year, I changed, I am done to meat just at dinner. Veggie style lunch, people dont believe i did it and question whos veggies are in hte fridge, but I have noticed a diffence

  15. I love Dove's great!
    I think it's awesome that you tried being a vegetarian and will still be a semi-vegetarian! :) You're so's really hard to find thing to eat when we go out to dinner. But, one thing I've learned is that I can change things on the menu pretty easily to meet my needs! But, sometimes it is a pain!

  16. After going raw for 30 days in January I've adapted a similar mentality to you. I can never be a full-blown vegetarian because I enjoy meat at times. Not as much as I once thought, and I certainly don't need to eat it on a daily basis. I just am not a big fan of labels or the pressure that goes along with being defined by one. I am more cognizant about where my meat source is and I think that's a huge issue.

  17. i have very picky and tempermental skin. the only stuff i use is vanicream.

    food allergies are even worse... basically there is no where i can eat. that's how it seems anyway.

    i'm not fully veg, but i could be. i rarely eat meat anyway.

  18. MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAATTTTT! YES!!!!!! Oh I mean, great job on your veggie thing sweetie! Cavemen rule!

  19. my skin and hair are a WRECK from swimming, havent found the solution yet.

    i REALLY need to work on my diet, especially after the gorgefest i had last weekend. i eat like crap most of the time. but its mostly about convenience for me too. i should try harder!

  20. Michael, your burrito bowls look *so* yummy! I'm going to have to try a variation of that here~ I think the troops would love it. Congratulation on winning the Dove Nutrium~ I'll look forward to hearing how you like it. Have a great rest of your week!