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5 Lbs of Beets

June 11, 2012

Well look, nobody has ever called me a mathematician.  I got a little bit confused while getting ready for this week.  And thank God.  Turns out it takes 10 lbs of beets to get to 2000 calories.  I thought it was 5 lbs.  That’s why I am still here to write this blog, and why the whites of my eyes are still white and not red.

Let’s just start with a picture.

That’s 5 lbs of beets.  That’s what I ate.  I think it was enough.

I love(d) beets.  I think they are delicious.  Laura says they taste like dirt.  I think they have a wonderfully complex earthy flavor.  I threw all five lbs in a pot and boiled them with a sense of anticipation.  The whole house smelled delicious and the water in the pot turned red.  I figured it would be a great day.

At breakfast I ate my fill, and felt just fine.  I was hungry about thirty minutes later.  I toughed it out.

Just before lunch I was shocked to discover that my pee was not its normal color.  Not even close.  Here’s a picture.

I don’t always garnish and ice it…

Lunch I ate all the beets I could hold.  I put a good face on it and acted like I was enjoying myself, but that complex earthy flavor was starting to be more similar to red dirt.

I experienced something that I remembered from carrots, the feeling of being both stuffed and hungry.  It’s very strange and highly unpleasant.

Well, during the afternoon I suffered some nausea, and a headache.  I was also somewhat lethargic.  I had a giant snack of big boiled beets and had some caffeine, which knocked out the headache.

I have a friend who put himself through college and had very little money.  He grew a huge garden and ate his own produce to cut down on food costs.  He claims that when beets were in season he ate them for every meal and drank the juice in between.  This, he says, left all of his white t-shirts with pink stains in the underarms.  I thought this sounded a bit far fetched, but after stuffing beets in my face all day I planned to run in a white t-shirt and see what happened.  Lo and behold:

One run, and my white shirt is already turning pink from beet tinged sweat.  Holy smokes!  This stuff is potent.

After the run I had about a pound and a half to go.  I met some friends at Panera Bread for dinner.  They ate delicious soups and salads.  I ate beets.  And shivered.

“You ok?” One friend asked.

“Yeah, thanks for asking”

“Because you look terrible…”

“Oh, well, weird because I feel OK.”

“Maybe it’s just your hair,” he said, trying to smooth the akward situation over… like my hair indicates how I’m feeling about my diet.

I feel excellent!

Truth is I was freezing.  I couldn’t warm up.  After the run I took a quick creek swim to cool off.  My fingers immediately turned white and went numb and for the next four hours June felt like January.  I guess I just didn’t have the calories available to get my body going.

And I was nauseous.  So, for the record, sometimes I lie to people when they ask stupid questions and I am trying to eat beets for dinner without barfing red die all over a restaurant.

So I know you are wondering about the poop.  Well, it was unbelievable.  First time I ate a lot of beets I honestly thought I was dying after viewing the aftermath.  I was prepared this time, but it was still amazing.  The whole toilet bowl was filled with color.  Deep complex color that swirled and shifted.  I grabbed my camera and took about a dozen disgusting pictures, which I later deleted.  But I did accidentally leave my camera in the bathroom.  I’ll leave you with a little gem I found when I checked the pictures:

Judging by the angle, the glimpse of wallpaper, and the smile, I can say with authority that he is sitting on the toilet.

Taste: Complex and earthy slowly fading to mud.

Cost: $10

Fulness Factor: I only ate one thousand calories, and was very hungry.  I don’t think I could have eaten much more though.

Performance:  I ran six miles with friends and around a 9 minute pace.  I was tired, but felt pretty good on the whole… for the only time that day.

X factor:  Purple spit, red pee, poop that would have had me calling 911 if I didn’t know better… a truly colorful day.

Ps.  I can’t lie, I am starting to get a little bit tired of being sick one day a week.


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  1. Judy maxwell permalink

    Just so relieved it wasn’t terrapin stew. I agree with Laura that beets taste like dirt and I have felt that way since the first time I tasted them. It is a very good thing that I didn’t have to grow all my own food through college because I would probably have died of malnutrition rather than eat

  2. Collin permalink

    I love beets.

    Next time you want them (if that ever happens) you should go to lancaster county where you can purchase them at a rate of 5 bunches per dollar (and they are pulled out of the ground while you wait).

  3. I doubt anyone will blame you for taking a break or quitting. It’s been a pretty awesome run… No pun intended… Okay, maybe intended.

    Plus, I bet there are other death-defying ventures you could undertake to keep up the writing that involve less physical illness.

    • With a higher RX you suohld have someone with your to fit them. Online they only need your RX and your PD. With an optician they SHOULD take an OC height Which is where your pupil lies in the frame it’s self, and also vertex distance suohld be taken in to consideration. These can only be taken with the frame on and a person sitting with you to take the measurement. Another thing si that if you have issues, you can go in and have the frame adjusted and worked on by the person who helped you with it. Online places just can not do that for you. I never recommend it for a perscription like yours at all. If you rely on your glasses and contacts as much as I do, you really suohld take the time and money to invest in things to be done the right way. Plus, your warranties are usually better at a private practice as well, and not that great online. To put it mildly, you are getting what you pay for. I would hate to see you buy them online and then have to turn around a buy some again at the optician close to you just becuase the online place could not get things right. I never ever would do this nor would I tell anyone to. I know that people that read this are going to say that I am an optician so I do not want anyone to buy online. For the record, I get paid the same no matter what I sell, or how much I sell. So, the thing here is that I do see and fix issues from online ordering, or orders from cheapie places. I help fix the problems for free, and I was never even paid for the original purchase becuase they were bought from a cheaper place. So, I guess what I am saying is that I see patients buy things from places that are cheaper, I end up doing the trouble shooting, and then they end up buying what they suohld have gotten form me in the first place. Online eyewear ordering is just not that great of an idea. You really suohld be treating your eyes, and not your wallet on this one. Good luck!

  4. Stalena permalink

    So, I just realized you had this blog and have been giggling for the last 30 minutes reading your posts. My roommate has been asking me over and over, “What are you laughing at?” I then had to read her a bit of your adventures:) I have to say, from what I’ve read so far, I think the butter is the most disgusting, although the milk post was pretty gross too.

    All this to say, I have thoroughly enjoyed the descriptions of your food dealings!! I’d say keep it up, but I’m not sure how much more your body wants you to keep going;)


  5. I used to THINK you were a mathematician.

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