A New Kind of Stress... Will there be enough?

 Lunch for Day 1 of the Challenge!

Lunch for Day 1 of the Challenge!

Day 1 of the CalFresh Challenge is complete!  I was pleasantly surprised to see that not only did I make it through the day, but I was also able to make it through a Spin workout w/ a decent amount of energy.  There were small tweaks made to my day: I spent an additional hour on food preparation and drank an extra 40 ounces of water to stay “full;” however, we were able to squeeze in 3.5 servings of fruits and vegetables, got lots of protein, and I even kept my daily dose of caffeine. 

Now to the stress… while we had a “great 1st day,”  it might have been too “great.”  I thought I had budgeted enough rice and beans to get us through four meals; however, I’m quickly realizing that we’ll need nearly double the amount I planned for!  What this means is that we’ll potentially need to decide between protein and produce later in the week.  A part of me had thought that we’d have an easier time taking advantage of economies of scale with two people participating in the Challenge; however, we are learning that no matter how well we plan, this allotment does not allow for an adequate food budget. No matter how creative we get, something has to be given up.

When I realized how much my partner needs to eat, my first thought was whether I could cut my portions to ensure he got enough.  While I recognize that trading my food security for his is not a healthy choice, it is one millions of Americans make each day, especially those with growing children.  Since noticing the potential shortage, my free thoughts are occupied figuring out how to shift and stretch what we have to “cover the gap.” I rarely spend this much time and energy on getting enough healthy food in my body.  Luckily we have PLENTY of carbs (5lbs of potatoes for $1 makes carb loading easy).  We’ll see what the rest of the week has in store…