Here we go!  Nothing November!!!!!  Last year’s challenge was so cool; I had to repeat it again for everyone that has joined The Pep Talk.

What is it and why are we doing it?  
Beginning today and through November 25th, the challenge is to consume No Sugar, No Gluten, and No Alcohol.  I’ve had tons of questions via Twitter, so I’ll outline some basics.

When it comes to sugar, be aggressive!  This is where you can make the biggest changes.  Let’s talk about what you CAN have!  You can eat fruit.  Fruit rocks.  Why would I ever tell you to not eat fruit?!  You can eat things like yogurt, bars, and gluten-free crackers as long as they have less than 10 grams of sugar that comes from a natural source like dates and not from a processed source like fructose.  Can you eat a sweet potato?  Of course!  It’s from the ground!!!  Can you eat sorbet that is sweetened with cane sugar?  Ummm, no. Cane sugar is the same white granulated sugar that you add to cupcake frosting.    Can you eat a square of 70% or higher dark chocolate? YES! Did you know that one teaspoon of white sugar is equal to 4 grams of sugar?  That means in one can of Coke there are just over 9 teaspoons of white sugar.  UGH and GROSS! Want some impressive visuals?  Visit Sugar Stacks.

Don’t drink any.  Need some cough syrup?  Go ahead.  Otherwise, no adult beverages.  Need to go to an event?  Ask for a glass of sparkling water with a twist of lime.  I promise you that NO ONE will care!

Gluten is the big one!!!  You need to cut out the obvious offenders.  Things like pasta, bread, cakes, muffins, crackers and the like are out.  Do you need to eliminate things where gluten is hiding like soy sauce?  Only if you want to be meticulous.  The idea is to cut a lot of the CRAP out of our daily routines.  When it comes to gluten, people imagine a life without carbs.  If I told you that tortilla chips don’t have sugar or gluten would you feel better?  Don’t freak!  There are a LOT of things that are gluten free.   For a cheat sheet of gluten containing foods, click HERE.   For a list of gluten-free foods, including which grains are gluten-free, click HERE.

WHY are we doing this?
There are a few reasons to complete this 25-day challenge.  The first one is that it will give you a running start into the holidays.  The average American gains 5-10 pounds from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day.  WTF?  Ummm…NO!  Let’s just say that you completed this challenge and went cray cray for the rest of 2015.  If you were super committed to #NothingNovember, you would probably lose 5-10 pounds depending on how much sugar, alcohol and gluten you currently eat.  Therefore, you will end 2015 at the same weight you are today.  That would be pretty cool, right?  Reason number two is that the next 25 days will reset your taste buds.  That’s right.  You are so accustomed to overly sweet food that ALL fruit tastes sour to you.  You add agave to everything.  Your coffee needs a ton of sweetener.  You crave sugar after every meal.  You don’t enjoy dessert because a chocolate soufflé tastes the same as a Hershey bar.  You don’t even enjoy it anymore.  Getting off of sugar will allow you to taste your food again.  The same with alcohol.  Many of you feel that you neeeeeeed it to unwind, go to sleep, destress, celebrate, or soothe yourself.  You need these 25 days to get off of that habit.  It’s doing none of the above.  In fact, it is doing the opposite.  If you really listen to how your body feels and take some time to see what it looks like, getting off of the gluten might be the biggest shocker.  When I initially gave it up 17 months ago, I had no idea how good my skin would look, how many of my aches and pains would disappear, and how my mood would even out.  I swear!  What started out as a challenge became a lifestyle game changer for me.

There you have it!  The ins and outs of #NothingNovember.  I did a Periscope on the subject that you can watch HERE.  It’s about 25 minutes long, but I give some more tips and motivation.  Speaking of motivation, #NothingNovember is better when you do it with a friend.  Grab one!  I want to know who is doing it, so tag me on some Instagram shots of your food.  Use the hashtag #NothingNovember.

It’s 25 days!  You can do anything for 25 days. You are an adult.  You do not need to worry about hurting someone’s feeling because you didn’t eat the dinner rolls passed to you at a party.  You need to make your HEALTH a top priority.  NOT their feelings.  I don’t care if you think you are hungry.  You aren’t hungry.  You are addicted to sugar, alcohol and/or processed food.  You are detoxing and sometimes it’s a little uncomfortable.  It’s 25 days!!!!  Done and done.  No tears.


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