The Slump

They say Day 10 & 11 will be potentially the worst day for Whole30 and I feel like “they” may be right. I woke up normal, did my workout, ate a normal meal, but my mood felt some sort of nasty. I also got my period, so I guess this is normal. Got through my day with the normal energy that I usually have with no true cravings.

It wasn’t until about an hour ago that I had a “KILL ALL OF THE THINGS” moment.  I went to my tailor with my wedding dress to ask her to take it out because I’m pretty sure, she tailored it too small (there is no way I was smaller than I am now when I initially went in). And she wasn’t there!  So, I came home, pissed off because I rushed out of work to see her and the rest of my week is filled *AHHH PARENT CONFERENCES. *AHHHH WEDDING PLANNING STRESS* I immediately wanted to seek comfort in food. I ate some almond butter and a banana, which normally for me is a guilty pleasure because almond butter is so high in calories. It’s the first day on the Whole30 that I’ve snacked, when I know I shouldn’t be. It was delicious, and worth it.  I’m still feeling some sort of way…and having my period is always this way on day one. Usually by day 2 of my period, I’m back to normal. But tomorrow is supposed to be another day in the “slump”. Although, I feel no true aggression towards Whole30, just everything else.

So, there I have it a combination of the monthly demon, Whole30 slump, and wedding planning stress. I knew this week would be busy as I mentioned in my beginning of the week post. I was prepared for at least 1 moment of total hatred for all things, and I guess this has been it. I even brought an apple as an after meal snack today because I knew today would be a challenge. I’ve been avoiding too much fruit, but I’m glad I “treated” myself today.

What I ate today:

Breakfast: Hardboiled eggs over a bed of mixed veggies and hot sauce.
Lunch: Tuna salad (olive oil, celery, green onion, grapes) and mixed greens (with lemon juice)
Dinner: Probably salmon with some configuration of vegetables that I have stocked.

Takeaways from a few moments of “kill all of the things”

  • I’m happy that almond butter and bananas exist
  • Even though I’ve worked on getting rid of “anger” in my meditation class, I know I have some ways to go.
  • I still am enjoying all of the things I’m eating on the Whole30
  • I’m hoping tomorrow will be a better day for me emotionally.
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The Dark and Uglies

Today was a pretty uneventful Whole30 day for me, no new foods, nothing new as far as symptoms go, but it was a very reflective day for me. I guess maybe I’ve been thinking about the symptoms that I’m “not” really feeling. First, I decided to do this during my cycle, so everything coincides with PMS, but then again, nothing has been AS bad as it normally is every month. Secondly, I’ve been contemplating if I’m simply denying the symptoms or if mentally, I feel so positive that what normally knocks me out, can’t bring me down. Get ready for pretty much my life story, so don’t go past this if you’re not into that :).

So, now I’ll get into WHY I’ve taken such an interest in my own physical health. I had a pretty adverse childhood that led to a lifetime of symptoms that can most closely be labeled (and have been) as depression and anxiety. The trauma that I took on led me tumbling through my developmental years and well into adulthood on a hazy path of self-destruction, self-doubt, and self-loathing. I started adulthood, pretty much the same way and realized through a series of very destructive patterns, that I needed to make a change.

Since,  I knew moving my body made me feel good (as swimming was my outlet through most of those years) I started taking yoga classes, and it pretty much saved my life. I learned to become much more present and grateful through taking care of my body. It didn’t dramatically change my life, but it taught me that a new mindset was possible. One filled with gratitude and self acceptance. Through this acceptance, I decided to take more healthy risks.

I went to a therapist, but she recommended medication, which I vehemently opposed to. It was at a time where I was very low, cried almost everyday and had suicidal thoughts. I knew also, that when I loved myself enough to take care of myself, those feelings  went away. So, I fought for myself and decided to workout regularly and that was around the time I became a pescatarian. Slowly, the feelings did subside and I started feeling better.

Then, I changed jobs and the new job set off many triggers for me and I was straight back to the dark and uglies. I knew at the time, I was doing everything right to take care of myself. I worked out and ate healthfully. However, the job was a land mine for old feelings, so I took a huge leap of faith and quit. For a while, I was really happy that I made a change and was working towards a goal.

Fast forward to pretty recently and again, I was sinking pretty deep back into this dark hole. I was using sleep as my coping mechanism and pretty much only woke up to go to work. I had no energy to workout and used sweets and alcohol to help me when I felt “too stressed” and would indulge after school or on the weekends. Even though, I knew both of these things pulled me further down. I had to push myself to attend social gatherings and dreaded that invisible judgment.

Which brings me to the present. I’ve realized about a few years ago, that my depression/anxiety symptoms will never just “go away” unless I actively try to do something about it. I also know now that I have very specific triggers that will shut down progress, if I don’t recognize them right away. I know that I have to actively make sure I’m using positive self-talk because my default is negative self-talk. I also know that scientifically, both depression and anxiety stem from a chemical imbalance. Although I have these symptoms, I have been able to stay resilient because I have always been optimistic. I know, it seems silly to equate depression to optimism, but depression isn’t an outlook on life. Optimism is.

THIS is the reason why I’m open to doing things like the Whole30 and I push myself to workout. Although, I know I’ll look good, boosting my self-esteem through appearance alone is hard for me since, well…negative self-talk. Because it’s kind of essential to my growth and mental health. I am very aware of my body and my mind and when it’s being pulled out of balance. I know that I may always stress out before EVERY social gathering and afterwards. I will probably constantly think my fiance is mad at me, when he’s not. I will also always have days of looming sadness that I have to find the trigger for. However, I am certain that managing those symptoms has to come through managing my physical well being. So, in short, whatever symptoms I’ve felt have really been “okay” so far because the self-love I have overpowers any minor physical discomfort.

I am also happy knowing that Whole30 is bringing whatever balance it means to all of my friends who are doing it and kicking a** at it :).

Week 2 – Day One

Welcome to a new week of my workout as well! I was working on recovery week for my workout plan last week, and this week it’s supposed to amp up to a higher level, and boy did it kick my butt! Maybe I’ll journal more about my physical fitness journey, but the one thing I have to say is I really do think working out consistently is helping me kick any major side effects of Whole30 out. That and the fact that my normal diet is relatively healthy and devoid of too much rich foods. Who knows, maybe I will still have major headaches and lash out cravings that will arise, but I hope the worst will pass before next weekend when I go to Texas.

Today, I survived 2 Whole30 milestones. The first milestone is, I said no to alcohol all night and still had fun last night (I guess this one is not a big deal). The second milestone is, I ate at a restaurant! Wohoo! I took my friend to her favorite pho restaurant to celebrate her belated birthday, and I managed to order a salad (no dressing) and I brought my own hard boiled egg to add to it. I packed an RX bar as a “just in case”, but it wasn’t needed.

With that said, today I’m EXHAUSTED! I stayed out way later than I normally do and still woke up at dawn.  I’m pretty protective of my sleep on a weekday because teaching children requires my full attention and energy. However, I do believe special occasions arise where it is worthy to lose a few hours of sleep that I can manage to sacrifice on the weekends. With that said, I also have a very busy week coming up and I’m anticipating the following challenges.

  • Having enough food prepped for the week. (This week I have parent conferences, so I’ll be at school later and my fiance has been tagging on my food, which has proven to be a bit of a struggle since, this is kind of a “me” thing).
  • Finding time to grocery shop for my snacks to bring to Austin, TX.
  • Hoping that no crazy side effects pop up.
  • Having my wits together to get through being observed by my mentor. (I hate being observed).
  • Probably a second weekend in a row of staying up late, which I’m more than excited about, but also obviously understand the consequence of.

Today I ate:

Breakfast – Mixed Vegetable leftover and Frittata leftovers.

Lunch – Hard boiled egg and salad

Dinner – Will be salmon with brussel sprouts (probably) and riced cauliflower (probably)

Eat with your Eyes!

After tonight, I will have successfully completed Week 1 of Whole30. I woke up this morning feeling nauseous, but I still woke up at around 5:30AM without any problems in my energy. I attribute the nausea to one of two things 1) sugar withdrawal 2) I ate way too early last night and not enough. Whatever the cause, after having my post breakfast tea, I was back to pretty much normal. I spent all day in a training today for work, and there were some snacks and pastries that I most definitely would’ve automatically grabbed before, but I didn’t (silent cheer). They even had healthy snacks like bananas and carrots, but I was able to hold over until lunch time.

I think my main craving struggle comes at about after 3PM (like my normal after school time). Today I had to stop by the mall to pick up something and Oh my GOODNESS the SMELLS!!! Cinnamon pretzels, french fries, Mrs. Fields, Panda Express, it was teeming with temptation. I took a huge whiff and thought to myself, just imagine how you’ll feel AFTER you eat those foods, which made it relatively easy to pass on. Even though I normally avoid the mall, this gave me more of a reason to avoid the mall if at all possible (which shouldn’t be hard).

Today was an exciting food day for me, I’m definitely an “eat with your eyes” person. If it looks pretty, it’ll taste even prettier to me. I loved the frittata I made for dinner, simply because it was pretty. I think because it was pretty, it made it taste even better!  I also picked up sweet purple potatoes last week and just roasted them and cut them up and portioned them in both my breakfast and lunch. If I could put that on something every day, I would. I didn’t even season them, but they’re freaking gorgeous…see?

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Taste and texture-wise, they’re similar to a japanese sweet potato, so a little drier and less fibrous and stringy than a yam. I didn’t season them at all and they were perfect for me (because I’ve said it before I’m a plain eater). After dinner today, my fiance and I both agreed, that we really don’t mind eating like this. (Although, he’s not following the plan with me, but from what he tastes so far).

So, here is my food laid out for the day:

Breakfast: Scrambled eggs with sauteed kale over a bed of arugula and purple sweet potatoes on top.

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Lunch: Tuna salad (same as yesterday) with avocado, spaghetti squash, mixed greens and some purple potatoes and carrots.

Dinner: Frittata with zucchini, tomatoes, onions and kale with avocado and mixed greens.

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Today’s Random Tidbits:

  • If you’re doing the Whole30, find ways to make your plate pretty and packed with color, most people psychologically eat with their eyes first.
  • I’m going to a bar tonight, but alcohol doesn’t have the same pull on me as donuts, so I’m hopeful I will be okay. I’m hoping they have hot water, so I can bring my own teabags, though for some herbal tea.
  • Tomorrow is the first time I will attempt at dining at a restaurant, I am prepared and I am bringing a backup meal.

1st minor meltdown

Today is my day 6 and I felt on top of THE WORLD this morning. Woke up, got my morning workout in, had my breakfast, jammed to work, etc. etc. Flew through the day, no cravings ate a delicious lunch, grocery shopped, came home and that’s when it happened. I grabbed the bag of nuts from Trader Joe’s that I’ve been eating all week, swore that canola oil was not in the ingredients for raisins, BUT IT WAS!!! But maybe it’s because the package I got is different (just the bag vs prepackaged handfuls)…I thought to myself. Immediately looked this up on the Whole30 rules etc and phew, it wasn’t the end of the word…canola oil is allowed, but discouraged.

Then, as I was browsing through the list, the very end said “you can skip the Chia Pudding” or something like that to which I PANICKED, because I’ve been eating that for breakfast with a hard boiled egg the past two days! Then, I dug deeper into the rules (I’m not a deep into the rule person) and realized that Almond Milk is not an “ideal” way to consume almonds nor is having nuts in general “ideal” to the diet. But, I’ve been eating nuts in my preworkout and postworkout snack. This is when a tiny panic mouse started running the gears in my brain, but it didn’t run for long because my rational self stepped in. This is a journey and a process that will require a learning curve. I haven’t set up my first few days to be “IDEAL”, but it doesn’t mean I haven’t been working towards a healthier self. The least healthy thing I could’ve done was to beat myself up in that situation.

Back to what I said in my first post, if this causes me more stress, it’s not worth it. So, I didn’t let this little illumination on the rules deter me. With that said, it seems I need to be focused on eating a LOT more proteins per serving than I initially imagined, and I already feel bloated and full all the time from what I’ve been eating.

With that said, today I had:
Breakfast:
Chia seed with almond milk, blackberries and hard boiled eggs
Lunch:
Steamed Kale, spaghetti squash, tuna salad (tuna, olive oil, lemon, celery, green onion, salt), with an avocado.
Dinner: Scallops with pesto and vegetable medley (eggplant, riced cauliflower, mixed hearty 8 vegetables from Trader Joe’s).

Today’s Lessons/Changes Noticed:

  • I need more vegetables in my breakfast.
  • Even though I’m not on the ideal plan, I’m still on track and compliant.
  • Tomorrow, I think I’m going to do a frittata for dinner. Seafood is expensive and I can NOT live on just canned tuna.
  • My skin definitely feels clearer (which is not normal because I usually breakout PMS time)
  • My energy levels have been great, I haven’t needed a nap (this change started after I started working out consistently, but dipped even around this time last month).
  • I miss taking my allergy medicine and I definitely have been a little congested since Day 1.

Sugar Fairy

I had my first sugar dream. This must be my subconscious telling me that I either want to eat sugar or am scared to eat out anywhere. In the dream, I was out at a restaurant and I asked the server if my meal would be Whole30 compliant. As I was digging into the delicious bowl of kale, it got tastier and tastier and before I knew it, I was eating soft chewy rice cakes. I was so scared that I broke my Whole30 plan and the only thing I could think of is “do I tell my two friends that I’m doing this with and let them down or keep it a secret?” Thank god it was just a dream. I hear during this plan, this might happen.

Luckily, in real life, I haven’t had any cravings, but I know I’m very good at suppressing things. I gave away my whole bag of Pirate’s Booty as prizes for treats to the class. The kids hated it because it was veggie flavored, so I ended up throwing away a few cups. Of course I wanted some, but it wasn’t a struggle to give them away. I am keeping a growth mindset throughout this and telling myself that I’m eating MORE healthy foods now, and however the food I was eating before made me feel, is not worth breaking the Whole30…and that’s pretty satisfying to my waking conscious. I also refuse to call this a diet, but I’m sure subconsciously that word slips out, but it’s not a diet because technically, I’m not cutting anything out.

I will say today, I feel a little bit woozier than normal, so I’m assuming my withdrawal from sugar and carbs is kicking in. I also do feel hungrier than I did the past two days, but my stomach feels a little bloated. I’m not sure whether this is PMS related or diet related. Usually when I feel this way, I reach for a sweet treat, then pass out immediately, because sugar makes me crash and I never get the high.

Today I ate:

Breakfast: Chia seed and almond milk with blackberries and almond butter and a hard boiled egg.

Lunch: Steamed Kale with Butternut Zig Zags, Guacamole, and a hard boiled egg.

Dinner: Will be sauteed shrimp with spaghetti squash and possibly a bag of mixed veggies.
Workout snack: Pre workout will most likely be a bag of nuts and postworkout will most likely be a hard boiled egg.

PMS

I’m on Whole30 Day 4 and whether you want to know or not, I’m going to talk about PMS. I’m about at that time of month, where my body and energy level crash significantly. Everything kind of seems overwhelming and I become more forgetful than normal (today I forgot my phone at home and that my class had a rehearsal for an upcoming performance). So, I can’t say whether this is due to Whole30 or my monthly hormonal cycle, but I’m at that point where I usually crave ALL of the sugar and food. I eat chocolate to abandon, if it’s in front of me (last month, I had 8 Hershey Kiss’s and a chocolate Santa Claus in one sitting from a Christmas stash my students gave me).

Why do I share this? Well as of now, I do not have the desire to repeat what I did last month. In fact, today a kind teacher gifted me some chocolates as a thank you, and I gave them as prizes to my students. My grief in parting with these chocolates was more that I was not getting the emotional reward from the little token of appreciation than it was me wanting the contents within. To be honest, I don’t really like plain chocolate in candy form, but I do eat it for emotional gratitude. So, yes, I hail that book in all of its glory when it states that our relationship with food is highly psychological.

I won’t deny, that today, I feel like my blood sugar level is dropping and that I feel slightly cooler (temperature wise) and airier than usual. I still completed a workout with the normal intensity that I do, but today has been a struggle. As I mentioned, this is totally normal around this time of month, but the one thing it has not come with it is my intense mood swings. Could it be that I’m still feeling high from not really having many cravings since Whole30 began? Or that I’m too drained to have emotions? Whatever the cause my be, my normal craving for sugar is really subdued compared to most times in PMS.

Today’s take aways:

  • I feel more in tune with my body than before Whole30.
  • I haven’t had any intense cravings.
  • I’m nervous for any feelings of discomfort that may (or may not) come.

The most exciting thing I had today was that almond milk I made yesterday…I don’t know why I’ve had only store bought almond milk until now, it’s truly life changing!

Today’s Breakdown:

Breakfast: Almond milk chia seed pudding with blackberries.
Lunch: The same as yesterday.
Dinner: Will be scallops with pesto and riced cauliflower sauteed with mixed vegetables.

Whole 30 Day 2&3

 

So far, so good…
I’m not sure how much I’ll continue posting the things I eat after the first two weeks because one thing about me is that I normally eat VERY plain. So, unless I have the occasional burst of inspiration, the food posts may taper off.  (But if that’s all you care to know now, skip ahead to that part). I’m a pretty boring eater. I could eat the same thing every single day, as long as it tastes good. To get an idea, even though I eat vegetables, my favorite vegetable is yukon gold potatoes and I could eat it every single day in any form it is cooked with minimal seasoning.

Which brings me to cutting out grains as a food group. Before Whole30 I would rely on bread often. My favorite is the flourless sprouted wheat from Trader Joe’s. I ate it plain, with regular butter or almond butter. I pretty much had one slice every day after teaching and I never got sick of it.

My most intense “craving” so far has been for bread and snacking (I’m a huge grazer, I hate eating full meals). To be honest though, I eat SO much more protein than I normally do on my now Whole28 that I don’t really feel the physiological need to eat more than the three meals. It really is a psychological thing that I’m so used to doing. So, the biggest benefit of Whole30 so far to me is mindful eating and mentally slapping my hands away from foods I shouldn’t be having. The temptation really is everywhere, one of my students even brought me a vegetable flavored Pirate’s Booty today and my fiance is in between knowing whether or not he wants to commit (so that BREAD is still here). Breaking the habit of stress snacking before the bell rings for class or recess is something I definitely have to consciously do, but has required very minimal effort thus far. Which brings me to thinking about my meals ahead of time. I really feel like in order to “survive” these next few weeks, I am putting significantly more thought into what I can prepare ahead of time, which feels like I’m taking care of myself, which feels good.

No real differences to note in my mood or energy levels. I did wake up tired this morning, but I have also been wedding planning and stressed about a number of things. One thing I’m hoping this clean eating does for me is helping me sleep through the night :D. I do feel really good about what I’m putting into my body, so that’s an added bonus to my health bank.

Here’s what I’ve eaten so far…*note, every morning I drink one English Breakfast Black Tea with breakfast and every evening I drink an herbal tea after dinner

Day 2:

Breakfast – Scrambled eggs over arugula with hot sauce with almond butter with bananas. I ate a little more than I normally would because I really didn’t feel like having to eat a post and pre workout snack.
Lunch – Wild Alaskan Salmon seasoned with harissa and mixed veggies.
Dinner- Rockfish made with clarified butter, mashed sweet potato, and roasted brussel sprout with tomatoes.

Day 3:

Breakfast- Scrambled eggs over arugula with hot sauce (again!)
Lunch- Salmon salad (the leftover salmon I had with lemon juice, olive oil, grapes, green onion, and celery) over a bed of greens with lemon juice and olive oil. [pictured below]IMG_7362.JPG
Preworkout Snack- Trader Joe’s mixed raw nuts handful
Postworkout Snack –  Carrot sticks
Dinner – I haven’t had it yet, but I know it’s going to be my leftovers from yesterday.

Yesterday, I prepped the leftover salmon salad, clarified butter, and some pesto (raw cashew, basil, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt) and almond milk. Almond milk is a lot of almonds for a very small, but delicious yield. It’s not the most attractive picture, but it was mixed with chia seeds for breakfast tomorrow.IMG_7358-1.JPGIMG_7361.JPG

 

The Whole30 Day 1

Good Morning World!
So, I spoke about the Whole30 last time, I guess I should use this space to share how it’s going. To preface, I eat a mainly vegetarian diet with the occasional seafood, so doing the Whole30 means adding more seafood to my diet to ensure I get the protein intake without overloading and getting sick of eating eggs. Because I’m not a fan of tofu to begin with, cutting out soy protein isn’t going to be a big deal for me. I suppose I’ll slowly introduce different food groups I ate before the Whole30 as I document my journey as to not overwhelm this post…so enough about my protein intake.

Yesterday, despite celebrating 2 birthdays, I was able to stay “compliant” the whole day. In the morning, I sauteed a mixed vegetables and scrambled an egg, had guacamole and hot sauce over it and of course had my daily English Breakfast Tea [sans soy creamer :(].

For Lunch, we surprised my older brother for his 30th at shabu shabu, and I had a vegetarian broth (just kelp and mushroom) with salmon and assorted vegetables. I skipped all sauces (and layered on the green onions, sesame seeds, and togarashi). Refreshingly, I didn’t have to explain what I was doing to anyone, since everyone was preoccupied with their own food/conversation.” My brother had a huge tub of lemon sorbet as a surprise, but I just politely declined (from two different people) and said that “I’m really full” and then when someone insisted, I said “I am just sensitive to sugar and get headaches” (which is true).

For Dinner, my brother offered to cook for my friend’s bday (who he also happens to be dating, tehehe). Since he was cooking steak and corn chowder (and I’m lactose intolerant), I was that dinner guest who shopped for myself and picked up a bag of riced cauliflower (mixed with broccoli and onions) and trout. We sous vide the trout and I just sauteed the riced cauliflower mix. I’m considering getting a sous vide machine so my fiance and I can cook steak and fish in the same pot without it ever having to touch. The fish came out perfectly cooked as well. On top of all of this, the mother of my friend kept offering me to eat sardines, so I politely had a bite after making sure that it was “compliant”. I had bought the birthday girl a cake and I was proud of myself for not even having one bite, despite really wanting a piece (since, coffee cake happens to be one of my favorites…drool). I even cut the cake, without even trying to lick off the frosting on my finger.

Takeaways so far:

  • I kind of hate the word compliant, but it is the easiest way to describe the ingredients that I’m supposed to be eating.
  • Explaining what I’m doing to people is challenging, especially when some people are still not over the fact that I’m a pescatarian (Oh, I keep forgetting you don’t eat things or I just don’t understand why…etc.)
  • I did find that the “I am cutting things out to see what I’m allergic to” as pretty effective.
  • Because people tend to judge (mainly older folks or new company) what they don’t understand,  I really have gotten pretty good at navigating my way through figuring out what to eat without making a big deal about it…but having to explain Whole30 to other people without sounding like a “health nut” is definitely not something I’m thrilled to take on.
  • I’m not sure how good I will be at meal prepping, I really hate eating leftovers and that’s what cooking food ahead of time feels like. I am good at planning my meals, I feel so I will continue with that.
  • I do find the processed (pre-cut) foods to be really convenient and that’s probably the most helpful prep that I’ll need. I will probably also pre-make any protein salad and hard boiled eggs that I can eat for the week since none of those have to be reheated.
  • I’m nervous about taking a trip to Texas at the beginning of March…I guess I can navigate this by making sure I bring snacks with me, just in case.
  • I will be compassionate with myself throughout this process. I feel like writing will help me process the challenges. Ultimately, if this causes me more stress than it does good, it’s not worth it. But, I really doubt that it will. I eat close to the Whole30 to begin with, so it’s just a few tweaks and known healthful sacrifices.

That was a lot of takeaways, and with that I’ve already had my first Whole 30 meal of Day 2 :).

“HI”atus

I do this with my writing often, I take massively long breaks. A really small part is due to me adjusting to a new schedule (which feels constant) and the other part is due to the overthinking that is my brain. I don’t know what to write, what the point of sharing my thoughts publicly is, etc…etc. Also, wedding planning and lesson planning are both pretty mundane topics that I don’t feel the need to extensively talk about.

But, this morning, I’m clearly inspired and I feel that I have a direct source of a personal journey that I would like to share. I enjoy writing about journeys. Spiritual, travel, health/fitness, life, etc. I suppose I’ll write to this new journey that I have embarked on. Well, it’s not necessarily new, it’s been following me my whole life, but it’s new for me to talk openly about. That is my journey through health and fitness.

A few years ago, I lost about 20lbs by changing my diet and working out pretty regularly. I wouldn’t say that I stuck to a strict regime, but I did work out a few times a week. I stopped eating all meats, for ethical reasons, (except for fish) and I felt a change in my body composition and energy. For me standing at about 5’8″ and weighing about 140LBS (a normal weight) for about 4 years (since gaining weight in college) consistently, it was hard for anyone to understand that I was a) dieting or b) felt the need to lose weight. But, I did…I lost 20LBS, which was way more than I had ever expected, but that definitely boosted my confidence as well as my general outlook on seizing opportunities and believing that change (in any form) is possible. I also felt that it was my most natural weight and I didn’t feel restricted on my “diet” if you could call it that.

At some point though, between the ups and downs of making a real career change, moving in with my fiance, and planning this wedding, I stopped taking care of myself. I indulged in things and told myself that I was just “enjoying life”. I would work out occasionally, but gave up easily because I was “tired” and “deserved a break”. The whole time, I was telling myself these things, I knew I was letting myself down and making excuses.

Which brings me to, me trying on my wedding dress at the tailor and her telling me that I had “gained weight”. I was the same weight on the scale, but I also knew that I hadn’t been working out as much as I should have been. So, instead of asking her to take out the dress for me, I decided to commit to working out consistently again. The first two weeks were horrible, I gained almost 6 pounds and felt so discouraged.

But, I didn’t give up, and now, two weeks later, I definitely see a progress, as evidenced below (2nd week, 3rd week, 4th week). There are another four weeks to this program, so maybe I’ll share the few weeks as I complete them.

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I share these pics because, I’m not a crazy gym rat who spends hours at the gym, this is 40 minutes a day, 6 days/ week. I also do not share because I think my body has achieved some perfection, more so that I really am a normal person that has committed to something and I can see a difference. I also do not share my workout plan because, I really feel that everyone has to find the one that is tailored to them, and I don’t want to be an advertisement to say one is better than any other. I’ve never felt that one diet, workout, lifestyle was better than any other, which is why I never push my feelings on what works for me on others. I truly feel that everyone’s body is different and I experiment with mine and stick to what works.

I guess, what I’m really trying to say connects to what my meditation teacher has been telling me, to stick to the plan, do the readings, follow the instructions, and I will achieve what the teachings are trying to tell me. I definitely have far more work to go through in my spiritual journey, but I now see how that applies to the simple health rule. Stick to a workout regime that works for you and a diet that is sustainable in supporting healthy habits.  All that it takes to stay healthy is to work out regularly and to eat healthy (which is a very basic nutritional outline)…but above all, stick to the plan.

Which brings me to how recently, a friend posted about the Whole30 and that is something I will also embark to journey through because I want to be able to control my cravings for things that cause me to feel immediately sick or disoriented (mainly sugar and alcohol). I love feeling clear-headed and energetic (who doesn’t?). So, we’ll see how that goes and I’ll share my journey as I work through it :).