Dashing Diva Ditches Dairy

Don’t you just love alliteration? Clearly, I do!

Okay, so there are two parts to this post, and one of them is a giveaway! I promise, we’re not giving away dairy. Although, I’ve got some nice brie in my fridge…

Ditching Dairy

If you follow me on Twitter (@just_bec_), you may have seen my daily rants about the struggle of going dairy-free. And if you’ve read this blog for a while, you’ve no doubt heard me wax poetic about my love of cheese. So, how do these things go together? Hint: Not well.

Based on a pre-existing medical condition I have, my new doctors recommended doing some elimination dieting to see if we can determine what causes my issues. (That made it sound super ominous and serious, huh? It’s not, I promise, I’m fine!) And since dairy is a common culprit, that is where they wanted to start. Enter me having to give up all dairy for two months. ALL dairy. Even cheese Even ice cream.

I'll miss you, buddy!

I’ll miss you, buddy!

SIGH.

After a few false starts, I’ve made it through two full days. Not easily, and not without complaint, but I did it. I attempted Whole 30 last year, so it’s not surprising to me how many things contain dairy. But I only made it to Whole 4, mainly because of cream in my coffee. I’ve gotten a few recs so far for good dairy alternatives. I already liked almond milk, so that was cool. Oreos are vegan, so that’s a bonus. American Flatbread Vegan Harvest Pizza is pretty tasty, especially if you put pepperoni on it (don’t judge). And I even made some really delicious Dairy Free Banana Chocolate Chip muffins (those actually are vegan, so does that redeem me?).

With all that said, I can’t spend the next two months eating Oreos and frozen pizza. I mean, I could, but I don’t want to. And depending on how the test goes, this could be a very long term thing.

So, I’m going to need a little help here. Anyone have awesome dairy alternatives? (Meaning cheese or ice cream, because no other dairy really matters, amiright?) Or recipes you love that are inherently dairy-free? A plant based protein powder you love that doesn’t taste like grass? Or if you’ve successfully given up dairy, and you have tips to share, those would also be lovely.

Dashing Divas

Let’s move on to more pleasant topics, shall we? Diva Dash!

Shape2

 

If you don’t know anything about Diva Dash, it’s a women only obstacle 5K. Think lots of costumes. Think LOTS of tutus! And some running and climbing on things and fun. And also, think charity. For 2015, the charity partner for the Shape Diva Dash is Girls on the Run. Awesome.

Shape

I’ve posted about Diva Dash before. I did my first Diva Dash in 2012. This was pre-Scoot, so to give you some background, 2012 was the year that I started running. I had been Couch to 5King since February, went to Atlantic City in April and did a 7K while Mer and Cam did the half, signed up for a couple of colorful runs over the summer, and when I saw this video, I knew I wanted to do Diva Dash.


Looks so fun, right? And challenging!

So I signed up, with every intention of spending the summer getting ready for obstacles and running. And then July came. And heat came. And running stopped. And by the time September rolled around, I was not at all ready.

I did it anyway, and it was fun, but by the end I was dying, and literally had medics pulling me aside and asking if I was okay. (I was fine, I just get really red in the face). Not exactly the experience I wanted to have.

Still, when sign up time came in 2013, I jumped right on it, planning to spend the summer getting ready. I think you can guess what happened. I went into the 2013 race with so much anxiety, and I wound up skipping a bunch of obstacles because I was nervous. Again, fun, but not the experience I wanted.

2014, I signed up again, and I don’t think I need to tell you what my plan was, or how it went. When race day dawned and it was 95 degrees and I was still suffering from PF, I just said screw it.

So, when I saw the sign ups for 2015, and I got the urge to sign up, I realized something. Diva Dash is my Moby Dick race. I have to conquer it! And, since I wanted to make sure I stayed good and motivated this year, I signed up to be a Shape Diva Dash Ambassador!

What does this mean for me? It means I’ve really got to stick with it this summer, so I can have the experience I want to have.

What does it mean for you? Well, if you live near (or want to travel to) any of the upcoming race locations this year (Washington, D.C. on 9/12, BOSTON on 9/26 or New York Metro on 10/10), you can use Discount Code AXSCOOT to get $10 off your registration. I highly reccommend Boston, since I live there, and that is the race I will be at, and you can come give me a hug.

And, since the Diva Dash ladies rock hard, they are letting us give away one free race entry! Awesome? Awesome. This giveaway will stay open until 6/19/15.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck, Divas!

7 thoughts on “Dashing Diva Ditches Dairy

  1. Love this. After I did the 2013 Dash, my left knee acted up to the point I went in for an MRI. I had surgery on it in 2002 and really thought I aggravated it. Tests came back clean and he gave me some PT exercises.
    I didn’t do 2014 out of fear it would return, and had planned to skip 2o15, but this post so motivates me to go for it again, especially remembering how proud I was of the accomplishment. I only skipped two obstacles (the monkey bars since I had wrist surgery 6mo before, and the wall since I was a wuss). But what a rush to cross the finish line, right?
    I also had a bout with lactose intolerance a few years ago. I have no idea what caused it, or why it came and went in a little under a year, but for those 11 or so months, I bought Lactaid, and had to double check with waitstaff whether fish and chicken were coated with milk before being baked (Word to the wise: avoid the Baked Scrod at the 99). There a fantastic alternatives since it’s *such* a huge allergy these days. Check out Buzzfeed. I subscribe to their foodie emails and have seen a ton of vegan recipes and dairy-free ideas. Also look into recipes with frozen bananas as a base to satisfy that craving. I’ve done it with bananas and sunbutter and it is amazing.
    BRB gotta go train…

  2. This race looks like so much fun! I did a half marathon but have been looking for something a bit different. This would be perfect!

  3. I’m not dairy-free, but I’m trying to expand my non-dairy “milk” consumption. Coconut milk (unflavored or vanilla) is good in coffee, but it is a little thinner texture-wise; So Delicious also makes a coconut milk “ice cream” that is pretty good. (There is a brand that makes coconut milk-based bars, but I can’t remember the name…something about bliss? Coconut bliss?) There are some artisan vegan “cheese” products out there. I like the Daiya “cheddar” slices, but only melted on my veggie burgers (I do not like them very much cold on sandwiches). The slices stretch and melt like cheese, so I put my heated veggie burger in the microwave, put the slice on top, and nuke for 30 seconds. Go Veggie! brand makes a spreadable that is supposed to be a replacement for cream cheese, which I love (which is funny, because I hate cream cheese). I’ve never warmed it or tried to cook with it, but it is good on sandwiches and crackers. Tofutti Cuties are a good ice cream sandwich replacement, though not everyone agrees with me on that point. I’ve had some cultured soy products in place of yogurt.

    You might look up EcoVeganGal’s blog, as I bet she has some great dairy replacements.

  4. Congrats on giving up dairy! I was a 20+ yr vegetarian before going vegan, and I struggled a long time to give up dairy. I found a local vegan group and that helped me discover TONS of new food options. The best advice I can give you: Don’t think of it as: I’m giving something up (Negative Association). Think of it as: I GET TO DISCOVER so many new HEALTHIER food options (Positive Association). I never realized how much I relied on dairy, and it disgusts me that I did for so long. So focus on ‘crowding’ your plate with other delicious foods and try new ones. Traditional Asian foods do not contain dairy – and Asian countries boast many of the highest longevity rates in the world, and most of the lowest incidences of heart disease, diabetes, cancers, etc. That’s not a coincidence! It’s the food! I wish someone had told me: Don’t let going dairy-free became about finding a ‘substitute’ that tastes just the same. If that is your aim, you will be disappointed. I have four different types of ice cream in my freezer: soy, coconut, almond, and rice. They all are delicious! And I never would have found them without giving up dairy. I even make my own cheese now (from raw cashews). But if you really crave cheese right away: try Kite Hill (Whole Foods) and Daiya (not very good cold – but it melts beautifully) I’m not a fan of Go Veggie due to the taste, plus most of those are not vegan. For gourmet vegan ‘cheeses’, try SunRawise – they are amazing! Daiya also makes a cheesecake that I reviewed on my blog. Tasty! If you haven’t already – check out some food documentaries for more info (and motivation to stay on the path): Forks Over Knives, Food Inc, Vegucated, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Cowspiracy (environmental side) and Earthlings (ethical side). For dining out: check out HappyCow.net. If you like to cook: follow Happy Herbivore for lots of beginner recipes. If you have a sweet tooth: Chocolate Covered Katie has an amazing blog of decadent dairy-free desserts. GOOD LUCK on this journey!

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