This is a personal log entry for my 30-day non-extreme undiet challenge. You can also keep me honest by tracking my current activity.

Just posting on April 1st makes be a bit itchy, but I can't question the great and mighty calendar. It really is Day 30 of my Undiet Challenge, although it technically won't be over until midnight, I suppose.

Five was more than I thought.

At 40, I figure I'm pretty good at counting, and I've got all my fingers and toes, but getting from 4/day to 5/day was a lot tougher than I expected, and I slipped a bit this past week. I really had the 1/meal + 1 snack down, but getting to 5 fruits/veggies means 2 snacks or doubling up at a meal.

I finally am getting the hang of the doubling-up, since it can be as simple as a big side salad (instead of just a side of hot vegetables), a side veggie and some soup, etc. It just took some doing to figure that out.

I built some habits.

I don't think 30 days is enough to declare victory, but I feel like it got easier, and I'm not feeling stressed about it or completely relieved to stop the challenge. I think I can keep this up - I'm sure I'll slip to 3-4 some days, but there are going to be some 5-6 fruit/veggie days, too. Meanwhile, some bad stuff got knocked out of my daily habits, as planned.

The daily planning definitely helped. It really ended up being small blocks of 5-10 minutes, in practice, and I don't think I have to keep doing it every day, but a few minutes here and there helped a lot. Since I work from home, just stopping and thinking "What am I going to eat?" before I realize it's 2pm and I haven't eaten lunch made a huge difference.

Bonus: I gave up soda.

This wasn't part of the challenge, but I quit soda for 30 days (including diet soda). I'll be honest - I'm not a huge soda drinker, but I binge on occasion, and it usually makes me feel like crap.

I'd like to say I feel magically delicious now that I'm soda-free for 30 days, but I really can't. I feel better, and I feel good about completing the challenge. I also don't believe for a second that carbonated, brown, acidic sugar water is good for me in any way, but I think some moderation is ok. I'm probably going to switch to a once/week "cheat" and slip in a soda now and then.

So, what's next?

I'm going to do a bit of a recap on the whole 30-day diet idea next week, and then announce a new 30-day challenge the week after, just in time for spring. This one will have an official start date, so I'm hoping to get a few of you to join in.