Real Food Challenge – Week One

Since one of my intentions for 2015 is for our family to eat cleaner, less processed foods, it was damn near providence that I saw 100 Days of Real Food‘s 14-week challenge, just in time for the new year. Talk about luck! After running by the weekly challenges with Dave (and having him totally and excitedly on board), I signed up.

So, here’s how it works. I’ll get an email every Thursday for the next 14 weeks (the actual eating challenge will start on Sunday or Monday for 7 days, so there are a couple of days of prep built in). Each email outlines the “rules” for that particular week. It’s up to the participant as to whether or not they’d like to try each week independently or build on top of the prior week. In other words, continue doing the prior weeks while attempting the new weeks, if that makes sense. There’s also a very active Facebook group that’s sharing and answering and supporting. 

I’m trying to be flexible in this while still adhering to the rules, so I can’t say whether I’ll be doing the “build-on” method or the “one week at a time” method. I will, however, be following the rules as best I can. To help with figuring out what groceries we need to get weekly, I’m trying to make a loose menu for each week. Here’s this week’s (which is to eat at least two fruits/vegetables with each meal): 

Real Food Challenge - Week One - image 08e4e-cleaneating1 on

Some explanation: Whole wheat wraps would also include a natural lunch meat like turkey or ham along with the ingredients listed (and probably something more); the sandwich would have a side of things like carrots/cauliflower/peppers to dip into hummus or a healthy ranch; all other items listed are homemade (not canned soup or bought pizza). 

We may end up substituting other dinners if we don’t feel like, say, veggie quesadillas or I don’t feel up to making something, but it’ll still be within the rules. Let’s just say we’re all salad people (Hadley’s even into them, with a little ranch) and all of the dinners would include an additional veg on the side. Oh, and you’ll also see that there aren’t always seven items for the week per mealtime; this is mainly because we’ll sometimes repeat a meal (like have oatmeal twice in a work week).

I’ll also have to make some substitutions for our two-year-old. He usually eats pancakes every morning during the work week, so I may continue this but ensuring that it’s a real fruit-based one with a banana or orange slices on the side (although he’ll probably devour a smoothie or omelet on the weekend when we’ve got the time). He’s also not quite at the “chewing a carrot” stage (he takes HUGE bites, so…no) so he’ll get cooked, frozen (organic) veggies along with a sandwich or a ham-and-cheese wrap with extra fruit and veggies.

Check out the above link to see if you’d like to see what the other weeks entail or if you are interested in signing up (better late than never!) There are a zillion ways to make this work for you and your family, so don’t take my loose menu as “the” way. And I hope to let you know how the first week goes next week (Thursday or Friday), along with my menu for the following week.

Happy eating!