I'm a couple of days late on this but a hearty Happy New Year to everyone! Hope 2009 is more prosperous for us all versus 2008 (though I doubt it).
As is my 4 year old tradition, I'll be giving up meat for the first 3 months of the year. This started back in 2004 when I went vegetarian for a month. Since then I've added a few weeks every year with the ultimate goal of going vegetarian 100% (as every good Buddhist should). It'll probably be a long time before I get there but it's partly about the journey and not just the destination. My last animal protein meal was a bowl of fish cake noodle soup made by mom. This is in contrast to last year's last hurrah meal of all you can eat meat at Espetus in the city. I used to have the impending feeling of meat withdrawals leading up to the New Year but have found that over the years, I start looking forward to taking a break from normal food. There are still certain foods that I absolutely crave like pho, but after the first few weeks, it gets easier and easier.
In the past, my vegetarian lifestyle didn't actually result in me losing weight. This is probably due to the extra carbs I eat to compensate for the lack of protein but this year, I'm gonna try to make an effort to use this time to get in better health. Got a recent blood test before the holidays and could definitely improve on my cholesterol, sugar, and fat levels. I'm also going to try and lose 20 pounds over the next three months. One cool iPhone app I saw was Weightbot which helps you track your weight each day. Definitely worth $0.99 for a clean and easy to use weight tracking app. UI is superb. I'll be posting my progress over the next three months so wish me luck!