Stuff I Talk About

by Christina Ledbetter

The Stages of Cutting Out Sugar and Gluten and Happiness and Corn and Alcohol From My Diet for 45 Days

And the sad part is…I paid twenty bucks to enter this thing, y’all…

Day 1: Self-Righteousness

I put a sappy post on Facebook about how the children in Rwanda would LOVE to eat a banana and raw almonds for breakfast, so you all better stop complaining, you hear!? Seventy-three likes on my post. Self-righteous feelings swell. I will cut out sugar and gluten and corn and alcohol and red dye #5 – and heck, I might even cut out food altogether – and I will do it with gratitude.

Day 2: Can someone please explain this to me?

What am I suppose to eat as a snack?! There are literally no snacks in this pantry that I can eat.

Look! Almond butter!

Oh, it contains sugar.

Look – almonds! And here’s this cool YouTube video that shows how I can SO easily make my own almond butter.

Okay this isn’t exactly almond butter. This is, like, almondy crumbly stuff.

I smear it on a banana along with raw oats and text my team (they put us in teams so that we won’t start breaking light bulbs and cutting ourselves with the glass over the lack of sugar) a picture of it to illicit some encouragement.

almond butter

almond butter praise

I read the texts four times before going to bed.

Day 3: I don’t remember, but I know it was hard and I think I cried…

Day 4: Panic Attack at the Gym

I signed up for the 5:30 AM class. (I usually go to the 9:30 AM class with all the stay-at-home moms, even though I’m not a stay-at-home mom and just rather lazy). So it’s 5:30 in the morning…I load my weights onto my bar and when I finish, I make a really bad decision: I check to see how much weight other girls put on their bars.

Panic Attack


And that’s when my breathing got all wonky. It’s this pesky thing I deal with anytime I’m anxious – my esophagus is all, “Hey, I’m not really feelin’ this, so, I’m just gonna take a break, cool?”

I am about to have a panic attack in the middle of a gym. If this happens, I’ll be known as the girl with “that nervous thing” and people will be super cautious and encouraging around me. Which, now that I think of it could be cool; but no, I will not be the one to have a panic attack over back squats. Power snatch – maybe. But not back squats.

I try telling myself all the things I’ve read on Facebook posts, like, “This is YOUR workout, Christina,” and anything else inspirational I can think of. Benson and I are memorizing 1 John 3:1 right now, so I say that in my head for good measure. Then I pray.

And I lift the least weights.

Day 5: Going Out to Eat

Benson and I went to a new restaurant around the corner from our house. We can walk there, so I was hoping it’d be a really cool place and I could be all, “Hey guys! Oh us? We just walked here,” and it’d be just like we live in Brooklyn.

Plus, I was ready to show off some serious willpower. “Oh, I’ll just have the black bean burger, with no bun, and no cheese, and is this mayo vegan? And can you just put it over a bed of greens?”

And out comes some black refried beans-type dish over some chopped iceberg lettuce. And y’all, I’m not even kidding, the lady at the table next to me LAUGHED when she saw my plate and goes, “It’s just so SAD looking! Ha ha!” Then she took a big swig of her beer, still laughing, and motioning for her date (this dude in a shirt unbuttoned down to his nipples) to look at my plate. I try to tell myself that black beans are very nutritious and I should be thankful. Instead, I slouch.

Day 6: Creativity

How do they expect me to EAT!? Kroger humus has like seven ingredients I’m not allowed to have. You know, what?

I’ll make my OWN humus!

My own humus tastes like butt, or like lemony butt.



Day 7: I’m losing it, people.

Benson asks if I want to start drinking protein powder and I START CRYING.

Day 8: Fury

We receive an email from our coaches giving us an extra assignment. This assignment does not sit well with me…

They want us to hold a squat for ten minutes every day? No, I’m not even…I can’t. This is insane. I am NOT A PRISONER!

Benson rubs my shoulders and tells me I’m doing a great job. Then he proceeds to set a timer and squat while holding on to our footboard. I brush my teeth and rant about the injustice of this whole thing. I even throw in some scripture. I will not put my body above the LORD! I will NOT SQUAT FOR TEN MINUTES A DAY!

Benson quietly listens, still in a squat hold.

Day 9: Writing Therapy

I write a blog post detailing my participation in a 45-day challenge that initially sounded really exciting. Thirty-six days to go, folks…

Categories: Lifestyle, Matrimony

6 replies

  1. you are freakin’ hilarious

  2. Christina, why are you doing this to yourself? Did I miss the blog where you explained it? Also, why sugar, gluten, red dye 5, corn, and alcohol (ALCOHOL!! are you kidding?)?

    • David – it’s this kooky “challenge” our CrossFit gym is doing (I know, I know). The red dye #5 was just an example of things we can’t have – basically we’re avoiding processed foods, plus sugar, gluten, and I can’t even remember what else. Oh yeah – corn. I don’t know why we can’t have corn. Or gluten. We can’t have sugar because it’s killing America though. Actually, that’s the nice part of it because I was way addicted to sugar. We get one drink a week. I don’t know why. I just follow the crowd, David…

      On Tue, May 13, 2014 at 3:55 PM, Stuff I Talk About wrote:


  3. i just found this….what is it now? day 11 of the new challenge? this made me feel slightly less crazy and more like im not the only one who misses corn


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