Life As Bad Yogi Popular

Why I’ve Gone (Part-Time) Vegan

Have you noticed a suspicious number of vegan recipes popping up on the blog over the past few months?
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Have you noticed that I’ve been significantly less vocal about my pizza consumption?

Well, that’s because I’ve gone rogue! Well, “rogue” in Bad Yogi Land… What I’m trying to say is that I’ve been about 90% vegan for the past 5 months or so and I’ve kept it on the down-low for a few reasons. I’m a part-time vegan. I’m a Flexitarian. I like putting names on this because I find it amusing 😉

Here’s what I’m afraid of happening by saying this out loud:
– People who’ve followed me for years are going to feel like they don’t “know” me anymore and get mad and leave me.
– People who have hated on me for years for being open about eating burgers and bacon are going to be mad at me for STILL eating meat sometimes because OMG AM I SOME KIND OF DEVIL SPAWN?!

I think I’m just afraid of people judging me in any direction, haha. And believe me: if you ever want to test the fortitude of your self-image, put yourself out there online and open the comments!

I’m rambling, but I’m being totally serious! Yes, I’m like, a part-time vegan 🙂 I’m not doing it because I have some moral obligation to cows (though I sort of do because they’re adorable!), but mainly for the health benefits. When we first moved to France I got REALLY lax with my diet and ate literally anything and everything. My skin broke out like CRAZY and I had a really hard time getting it under control. Once I cut out dairy and meat, it was like an overnight turn-around.

I just feel like this is what my body needs right now, and I’m rolling with it. Plus, I haven’t missed the meat or dairy, and the only thing I really crave is sugar and chocolate sometimes. I have plenty of energy, I feel good, and that’s exactly what I wanted 🙂

This is not a moral or political or social stance I’m taking.
I still eat everything, just in smaller quantities. For example, when we were on vacation, I literally ate gelato every day, had incredible roasted duck in Lyon, Swiss fondue, Austrian speck, and Italian bolognese, and I enjoyed every single item and every single bite to the MAX.

I don’t have any plans to go 100% vegan and this is not a “lifestyle” for me. I mean, I’m not gonna be joining any clubs or movements or picketing outside the corner store. It’s also not a sensitive subject and it does not offend or disgust me to sear a nice steak.
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Bottom line: It’s all about balance, and this is what “balance” means for today’s version of me.

And in case it needs to be re-iterated: it’s still business as usual around here and everyone is welcome whether you’re a kale-loving vegan or a prize-winning deer hunter.

Much love to ALL of you!

Now, I’d love to hear from you! Uhh, thoughts on this, please? 😉 Are you vegan or not? Have you ever tried a different style of eating than you currently have? What appeals to you and what totally turns you off?

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37 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Laura

    September 29, 2016 at 6:08 am

    Hi Erin!
    I honestly have thought of becoming vegan at some part but later the cravings of meat are bigger that my power of will to get things done and never succed, and also I love eggs to much even if I do not eat them so much. What I have been trying to leave is milk products and it is not that hais. But still I think that if I start eating only at home then my diet will look sort of vegetarian as I have to share kitchen with lots of people so I do not cook at home and only prepare things with water…at the end, I think this is healthier!
    =D

  2. Amanda

    Amanda

    September 29, 2016 at 11:01 am

    I get it! I’ve been 90% vegetarian for several years (though I’m 100% vegetarian right now and for the next few months as I prepare for and enter my 300 hr yoga teacher training) and very happy that way for now. I’m still helping the planet and my body by eating less meat, and when I do eat meat it’s usually fish or the grass-fed hormone-free kind my parents raise. I don’t eat dairy all the time, but leave room for the occasional ice cream or cheese. I prefer coconut milk to dairy milk, anyway, and I use coconut milk in all my baking/cooking, too, since my boyfriend is allergic to dairy. Nowadays, it’s really easier than ever to try a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, even part-time, with all the recipes, how-tos, and alternative products out there…and I do encourage people to try it just to see what it feels like. I still believe that our bodies are all different, and it may well be that some people’s bodies need meat more than others, I don’t know. But what we believe about what goes into our bodies matter, and there’s no space for anyone to shame anyone else’s eating habits. We do what’s best for ourselves according to where we are on this journey, and that’s just right.

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    Andrea

    September 29, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    Thanks for being real and more importantly thanks for being you! I have never gone vegan (or even vegetarian) and I highly doubt that I ever will. Eating meat works for ME and my body. But to each their own ? I don’t judge. ?✨

    1. Avatar

      Erin Motz

      September 29, 2016 at 4:33 pm

      Right on! I love that we have people on all ends of the spectrum here <3

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    Erin Hack

    September 29, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    Very cool! I’ve been vegan for over 3 years (and vegetarian for many more) and I feel great – but I’m always scared to say “I’m Vegan” because vegans can sometimes be nasty and judgmental (I usually use the term Plant-Based). I think people should do what works for them while also keeping in mind how great it is to eat a vegan diet – even part-time. Its great for your body, great for the animals, and great for the planet. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

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    Colleen

    September 29, 2016 at 12:44 pm

    Hi Erin. I think it’s best to do you, and what you need, rather than be stressed over what others think of you. I think that is what being a bad yogi is about – doing you no matter what others say. In the end, all of our bodies are different, and our environment too – which also effects our bodies.

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    Stacy Porter

    September 29, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    I was vegan all through college and then I got really sick after I studied abroad in Russia for a semester because vegan/vegetarian is Not part of their culture at all so I was pretty much surviving off of macaroni noodles and carrots. When I got home, I ate EVERYTHING with no judgement. I’m a bit of a flexitarian now. I think it’s a very personal choice because every single person’s body and nutritional needs are different. Keep being you, Erin! No judgement. Only love for you xoxo

    1. Amanda

      Amanda

      September 30, 2016 at 9:07 am

      I love the word flexitarian! I think that describes me, too. 🙂

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    Tina Landis

    September 29, 2016 at 12:48 pm

    I am Vegan about 50% of the time. I still eat meat sometimes, but I cannot eat dairy, so if I eat out or buy packaged food, I usually choose the vegan options.

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    Giulia

    September 29, 2016 at 12:52 pm

    Hi Erin!
    I totally agree with you because I’m in the same mood of that “balance” idea. I think that anyone could be a part time vegan without being judged because after all veg diet it’s a diet like any other diet in the world.
    So as you sometimes eat food that it’s not part of your diet you sometimes eat meat, and I think that this is totally normal!
    Vegans shouldn’t get angry if someone “takes” their diet and modify it, there shouldn’t be hate because you do it for health and not for ethic.
    If on 90% of the times I don’t eat dairy and meat and I don’t call myself a vegan do vegans get angry? Of corse not, so they shouldn’t accuse you just because you say that sometimes you are not vegan. You just don’t share their ideas, the world is beautiful because of diversity!

  9. Avatar

    Ken Kauffman

    September 29, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    Oh my God I’ve started almost the same thing. Imy eating only vegetables and fruits ,and some bread, until dinner and yes I feel amazing.

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    Megan

    September 29, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Hi Erin!
    Thanks for sharing your story and reasons! I’ve been pesceterian for a little over 3 years now and I’m so happy that I made this choice, but I will have a “cheat” meal every few months. I was 100% vegetarian for about a year, but I’ve found that eating meat every now and again gives my life better balance. I also made a rule that in other countries I get to take a pass. I want to eat local cuisine and enjoy my vacations, and a big part of vacations for me are food 🙂 Lastly, I’m training for my first marathon (eek, it’s in 30 days!) and sometimes about 20 miles into a run I start hallucinating cheeseburgers, so I’ve decided to do one meat meal a month while training.

    I think of lot of people do something similar to what you are doing but are afraid to speak up because of fear of not being a “pure” enough vegan or vegetarian. But I’m all for reducing meat consumption and eating in a way that makes you feel good!

    1. Avatar

      Erin Motz

      September 29, 2016 at 4:35 pm

      Totally LOL-ing at your cheeseburger comment! I have similar moments sometimes, haha! Thanks so much for the love & support! <3

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    Carolyn

    September 29, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    Hi Erin – I’ve been about 85% vegan for a couple of years now, but yes, sometimes I still eat meat. You mentioned that you do it for health reasons, which is great. I do it for both health and environmental reasons. I think a reduction in meat and cheese is way more attainable and less scary for people than being totally vegan. I wish more people would speak out like this. It doesn’t need to be all or nothing. Everyone can make a difference, in their bodies and in the world, by just reducing. For some, that might mean one vegan meal a week, meatless Monday, or 90% vegan. And all of that is great! I think more people would be willing to try it if there weren’t such a stigma around “failing”. Who knows, like you, they might find they don’t even miss it that much 🙂

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    Carolyn Franklin

    September 29, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    I’m deffanatly a meat Eater, thinking about a modified paleo because I am allergic to most fruit and vegetables. Most of them fresh cause my throat to swell and a few digestive tract problems.

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    Laura

    September 29, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    I think you really shouldn’t worry too much about people judging you for what you eat. I think most of the people like you because of your great personality and not your lifestyle. Even though I am a “fulltime” vegan (and got pretty excited about the news about you being part-time vegan) I believe that it’s everyones own choice how and what they eat as long as they feel good about it!

    1. Avatar

      Erin Motz

      September 29, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      Totally agree that most people wouldn’t think that way. It’s so easy to focus on the few comments that are negative instead of the many more that are positive. Thank you for the reminder and for the love 🙂

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    Mercedes

    September 29, 2016 at 2:26 pm

    I don’t think that is really any of my business what you eat or not. Your moral values and the principles you stand for ( acceptance, compassion, understanding….) are important. The rest… Well, I’m an adult. I am grateful for having you there…… Hey! Cheers for a good ice cream, fantastic steak, ratatouille…….

    1. Avatar

      Erin Motz

      September 29, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      Three cheers for all of this! <3

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    Kay

    September 29, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    Go for it. I’m also part time vegan…and full time no dairy…because I like to breathe. It’s your life…

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    Judy

    September 29, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    Hi Erin! I’m totally vegan and am thrilled with your choice. There are many paths in a beautiful life and you are traveling your paths well?

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    Shilo

    September 29, 2016 at 3:09 pm

    Yes! So, happy you posted this. I myself have started doing the same thing in the past month and I’m feeling changes for the better. I’ll still eat my favorite cheeseburger though when the urge strikes;)

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    Marcie

    September 29, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    I’ve done a lot of experimenting with food: I’ve been a full-time vegan, vegetarian, paleo, whole-30er .. you name it I’ve probably tried it. I quit at the end of each one because of feeling so tired of being told what I can and can’t eat. I only recently decided I would try the age old trick of eating what makes me feel good and not what a group of people tell me to eat. Coincidentally, I’ve been eating a “part-time” vegan diet as well as a result. But, when I made the original promise to stop following specific diet trends and just eat what makes my body feel healthy, I was really inspired by you! You’ve always struck me as someone who doesn’t abide by eating “rules” — you eat to energize, to be healthy, and to have fun 😀 So, no matter what you choose to eat every day and how people online may feel about it, know it’s your personality and overall openness that make us love you and bad yogi so much!

    1. Avatar

      Erin Motz

      September 29, 2016 at 4:38 pm

      this means so much to me, marcie! thank you so much for this! 🙂

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    Claire

    September 29, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    I’m vegan and have been for over five years, welcome! It’s sad that unfortunately *some* vegans have given us all a bad name, which seems to be happening more and more, being preachy and self righteous. At the end of the day, we’re lucky enough to be able to choose what we want and don’t want to eat, when some people have nothing. Each to their own, I don’t get why people are so concerned about what everyone else eats! Let’s all just chill and eat our cake. (Whether raw, vegan, pales etc!) x

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    Jessica

    September 29, 2016 at 7:26 pm

    Love, love, love your blog!! I am not vegan, vegetarian or anything else. I am a RYT 200 & love, love, love bread & pasta. However, like you I have started eliminating some things from my diet for the same reason, body breakouts & tummy issues. I am slowly taking away gluten from my diet. Not 100% but really tracking it & being mindful of how much goes into my body each day. I have a lot of friends who follow strict diets & I’m cool with that. To each his/her own.

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    Angela

    September 29, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    Well written! I’ve actually experienced something very similar. I used to swear I’d never “go paleo” and I’m absolutely, perilously, shockingly the closest thing to it. I’m gluten intolerant so that’s been in play for quite a few years no. But recently, like yours, my body was telling me things that I couldn’t ignore and now I have almost zero sugar (though on the rare day when something sweet sounds yummy I’ll have it) and precious little dairy (though once in a while I’ll have a little cheese if I want to). I agree – it’s all about B-A-L-A-N-C-E. I’m not planning to do an absolute paleo thing any time … well, ever. But right now this is helping me (and by right now I mean for the last 8 months), and I feel better. The best part to me is that I have ZERO food cravings and food doesn’t control me anymore.

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    Jen Carwardine

    September 30, 2016 at 2:56 am

    Hi Erin, I was having the same problem with my skin. I’m vegetarian and like to think I have a healthy diet yet was still having outbreaks along my jawline. I then read that dairy could be a cause of this so I stopped having my usual Greek yoghurt and honey for breakfast and have cut down on milk and…so far this month my skin hasn’t suffered! I have also replaced biscuits with coconut, dates and almond balls for when I am craving something sweet. Hopefully I have finally got it Sussed! However love cheese and haven’t cut this out of my diet. Let’s see..

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    Tijana

    September 30, 2016 at 4:52 am

    I love you bad yogi 🙂 After reading your articles I am finally not feeling like cheating someone, thinking I can actually be so into yoga and not into being stricktly vegan/vegetarian..I am not quite a meat eater eather but I am an omnivore and I don t like being extreme in any way. I Love and Enjoy all food and love eating healthy as well as indulging in snacks, candies etc. Thank you for giving a different approach and speaking at loud about your attitude. Following you from now on regularly!

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    Lisa Sherratt

    September 30, 2016 at 6:58 am

    Good for you! I must admit I find it very sad that you’ve had to write this and almost defend yourself when you are eating vegan for the best possible reasons – because it makes you feel good!
    Personally I am not vegan but I gave up dairy and gluten for health reasons about 18 months ago and feel like I’ve spent the whole time defending myself and my choices – even after people were telling me how great I looked because my skin was better and I lost over a stone in weight!
    Yay for eating well to feel well – totally all about the balance and enjoying life!

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    Kerri

    September 30, 2016 at 7:59 am

    I was vegetarian/vegan for over 10 years (from 13-23) but when had my son, all I wanted was a hamburger. Since then, I’ve eaten meat, but I really don’t care if it is there or not a lot of the time either. People don’t realize how much of what they already eat is vegan, or how simple changes can make a meal vegan. If I am not cooking for my son, I often will just make myself a giant bowl of veggies for dinner, or a meal without meat (tomatoes and basil on toast being my current obsession!). So I guess I am sort of part time vegan too, but I don’t care for the labels and the judgement that comes with it. It’s sad you need to hide it, or worry about judgement from others, but it’s true how people are. I only take issue with the type of vegans that act morally superior to others, and you are clearly not that, so you do you! 🙂

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    SIlvia

    September 30, 2016 at 1:21 pm

    Great! I needed to see this right now.. I’m considering do the same, i’m more like step by step and maybe eat fish for some time, I’ll eat eggs for sure, but I’m afraid its too difficult to have every nutrient under control. I’m into yoga and fitness and I don’t want to feel sick for it.
    I’m studying the situation hahaha
    How did you do it at the beginning?

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    Kat

    October 3, 2016 at 4:53 pm

    First of All I love following you! You are funny and you say stuff that people might be too shy to admit or say!
    I tried for 21 days go Vegan, at first it was really hard because I love meat! But after a few days and so many yummy recipes it was easier and easier. I saw some changes in my weight ( lost 3 lbs) and my skin was absolutely gorgeous!
    I need to admit that I still eat a steak once and a while, but I tend to stick with fish and sea food. I also tried to eat more organic and from local farms, the only thing was that it was expensive… but morally I told myself that the animals had a good life( free range), well that’s what I truly hope!!
    I love trying out new things, and new diets, just not only for the weight loss but to figure out which lifestyle I like best.
    thanks again for your amazing articles and videos! you are amazing!

  28. Avatar

    Anne

    October 4, 2016 at 3:02 am

    I really loved this post. The way you try to justify your choice to both sides feels very familiar to me. I have been a 99% vegetarian for 3 months for various reasons and I’ll stick to it because I feel great. My friends and family kind of accept this choice. But I do feel like it inconveniences them even though I always tell everyone I’ll eat what is there and don’t need extra meal options or to go to vegetarian restaurants.

    When on holidays abroad or treated to a 7-course dinner for an anniversary, I did and I will eat fish or meat because I think there’s no need to be radical about the whole issue. Still I felt like a bit of a traitor because even though I don’t call myself a vegetarian, still most of the time i don’t eat animals and then sometimes I do. And some of my fellow yogi vegans/vegetarians seem to find it strange how I am even still able to eat meat/fish.

    I can really relate to the choice you made. I don’t think I could be a full-on vegan because I like eating out with my meat-loving friends and many times in my home country restaurants have 1 or 2 vegetarian choices but nothing vegan. But being 85% vegan while eating at home or while it works sounds like something I’ll try some day soon.

  29. Pála Margrét

    Pála Margrét

    October 10, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    Thank you for sharing Erin! I actually have a vegan friend and sometimes joked about being part-time vegan, as I thought was very rational, but she did not like that at all, haha 😉 However, I like that word – flexiterian! Because that is definitely what I am! I know I feel the best when eating no gluten nor sugar and skipping dairy products as well, but I think I will never completely stop eating meat (or any of the other stuff actually, because that´s no fun!). I´m still confident that I need way less meat that I´m used to (I´m Icelandic and there it isn´t considered a healthy diet if you don´t have meat or fish at least once a day…) and I just took that to be true. However, as an exchange student, and mainly because I don´t like cooking complex meals for one person, I kind of substituted all my meat with eggs or chick peas and rarely bought any dairy. I felt great! I know that diet suits me, though I sometimes added both sausages and cheese to my veggie stirs because I was craving them. And that as well is ok! What I like about this kind of discussion about diet is that everything is completely free, everything is open and acceptable. We agree that we should eat as healthy as possibly for the sake of ourselves, but there are no rules, no one size fits all. Because the truth is that we should all be on our very personal diet. I´m on the Pála diet 😀 Mostly I eat a lot of vegetables (tomatoes are my new obsession!) but also I eat eggs, sausages and sometimes chocolate and ice cream. What I´ve learned with my diet experiments is that it will never suit me to forbid or decide to never eat some food ever again. And I also know that when I eat very healthy my “cheats” affect me less, while eating gluten or sugar all the time doesn´t suit my body at all. Anyway – super long comment – thank you Erin! 😀

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    Joey

    October 11, 2016 at 10:25 am

    Totally agree with the flexitarian label haha. I eat vegan at home for health, moral, enviromental feelings, but if out on vacation, a nice dinner, at a friends house and don’t want to seem difficult, or it’s just been a rough week and a cheeseburger just feels like the answer I’ll eat meat/dairy. I feel like people do judge the “flexibility”, as if you have to be 100% one side or the other. It’s all about balance.

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    alison

    June 14, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    Super late to the party here but glad I found your site, and this post in particular. I legit read through every single one of the comments in response to the post, and it’s nice to see the community that you’ve attracted–all over the yogi spectrum but kind, open and accepting, which is a nice reminder that that’s what yoga is really about. I’ve been debating for months (off and on for years, if I’m being honest) about getting my teacher certification, but I’ve always thought to be a “true” yogi you had to be a vegan or the puritans will burn you at the stake–pretty much the opposite of ahimsa, amiright? I keep chickens (for eggs and because they’re cute, not for meat) and bees (for honey and to help the population, also not for meat), and I’m married to a deer hunter (not an a-hole ‘killing for fun’ and ‘animals are trophies’ kind of hunter), so I’ve felt like that excluded me from the possibility of going through with teaching. It’s been a bit of an identity crisis, really, which feels so stupid. I’ve lost my instinct to just eat what I want/need for fear of being demonized or considered a fraud. ‘Tis a work in progress…

    So, to sum up my lil confessional here, thank you for your honesty and this rad community. My kinda peeps 🙂

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