Monday, January 21, 2013

My Journey to Clean Eating

So I mentioned briefly in my last post about my decision to cut out gluten and dairy from my diet, but if you didn't read that post, I will recap it here.  At the beginning of the year, I made a decision to cut my diet significantly. This was only supposed to last a few days, but as I began getting further into it, I realized that this is an emotional issue not just a weight issue.  So I chose to stick with it.  I have previously read "Made to Crave" and I was reminded that I am craving food, not God like I am meant to do.

So I kept eating really clean.  I had basically just fruits, veggies, and nuts.  I would have some almond milk to get my calcium (and it tastes good!) and I would often add some pre-made fruit smoothies for breakfast.  I began to realize that by eating cleaner foods, I was really giving my body the things it needed! Not only do I feel so much better physically, but I have also lost over 10 pounds in just a few weeks.  I definitely did not expect that much of a change!

So why eat clean? Before I was eating clean, I was fine. I didn't notice that I was more tired than I should be or that my skin was breaking out because of my food choices.  I just thought it was a result of having a baby.  I also didn't have reactions to processed foods, because my body was so used to processed foods, that it didn't know any differently.
                                                                                    Ignorance is bliss, right?

Just because I didn't notice those things, didn't mean that they weren't there.  Since cleaning up my eating, I have seen such a change in my life.  I think more clearly, my skin has nearly completely cleared up, I have lost weight, I feel generally better, and I enjoy the things I eat more than I ever have! So, yes, all those processed foods are pretty tasty, but I have really learned to look at how they affect my body and have decided it's just not worth it!

What does eating clean mean? By choosing to eat clean, I am saying that I value the food the Lord has provided and therefore I am going to eat foods that are natural.  I eat fruits, vegetables, nuts, fish, and some lean meats (I choose to eat this minimally).  You can also have dairy and grains in there, but I keep those out of my personal diet. Eating clean is simply eating foods that are pesticide, preservative free and therefore giving your body the most nutrients you can give it!

Why gluten free? The biggest reason that I have chosen to take out gluten from my diet is because I am a carboholic! I absolutely love my breads and anything related to breads. So I felt it was important to simply take away the temptation.  I have added in a few gluten free carbs, however I eat those in moderation and try to be careful of how much of that I consume.  I also have felt that I get a little gassy when I have gluten (i.e. beer on new years eve).  So I have just chosen to avoid it.

Why dairy free? I think this one is even more important than the gluten.  I have read in several places that many people have a dairy intolerance to some level, but most people don't even realize it.  I have also read that taking out dairy can really help clear up your skin.  The largest reason I chose to keep it away it is because of simply how my body feels without it.  Adding dairy back in would result in me becoming really gassy, bloated, and feeling generally sluggish.  I could choose to have these on occasion if I wanted to, but I feel that it's simply easier to just not mess with it at all.

So what now? Now I begin to find new ways to eat that are incredibly tasty.  A typical day for me looks like this:
Breakfast- Green Goodness Fruit Smoothie or 2 egg whites with veggies and some almond milk
Lunch-leftovers typically or a salad or a cup of fruit smoothie
Dinner- a sweet/white potato and sauteed veggies or vegan, gluten free chili/soup
Snacks- snack bars, fruit and veggies, or a big glass of juice.

I don't count calories or feel as though my life is limited because of my diet.  In fact, I feel more free than I ever have been.  I no longer feel bloated after I have a meal or that I am missing out. Instead I know that by choosing to eat the food God has given me, I am becoming a better steward of my body and therefore enjoying my life even more!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

New Year, New Mentality

This year I want to make a change.  Well, not just one change but many. And not just for this year, but for my life in general. For so long I have lived my life wanting more out of it.  Wanting to be inspired, wanting to be healthier, wanting to look at life very different than most Americans look at life.  I want to be different.  But I just sat and did nothing.  I would talk all this talk and dream about how life would be, but I never really saw that my life could be that way right where I am at.

Maybe it's just knowing that we are getting out of the Army this year, or maybe it's just finally being able to look at my life objectively.  Whatever got my to where I am, I am thankful for it.  I feel like it has been a series of events that have all tied together.  But I want a change.  I want to live my life with intentionality and inspiration.  I always have...

After I had Marie, I was really ready to lose the baby weight, but for the first few months I would not actually do anything to meet that goal. Mostly because I was not emotionally ready, which was totally fine.  However, at the beginning of 2013 I decided I was going to make a dramatic change. I decided to cut out all Gluten products, Dairy Products, and Animal Proteins from my diet (So basically just eating things that were natural).  This was supposed to be only a few days, but it ended up being much bigger than I thought it would be.  After about 3 easy days, I hit my first wall. My mom made dinner one night that was all foods I loved.  I was at a crossroads.  I wanted to continue my diet, but up to this point it was just that, a diet.  So I didn't care about it as much as I thought I did. So I wanted the food she made as well.  For about an hour I walked around the house struggling constantly about whether or not to eat the food she made.  I finally decided that I needed to continue my diet change, however I realized that this was an emotional journey as well....

I am emotionally connected to food. I've known this for a long time. However, I never really thought of it as a bad thing until now.  I realized that it's not a healthy connection with food. So I decided to continue keeping gluten and dairy out of my diet.  This has been a welcomed challenge.  Not only am I relearning what food is good for me, how is it good for me, and how does it affect my body, I am also learning that the food I eat is so important for my overall health.

I have also begun exercising again.  I really want to work towards my goal of running a marathon at some point! So I joined a gym with childcare so that I can go as often as I can and have begun putting a focus on myself and trying to get my energy and feel better about myself! I absolutely miss running regularly.

My mom has always told me that not having organization costs you money. I have since learned that this is true. I have lost formula coupons, gift cards, and bills.  It also costs you in time and stress. I have spent hours trying to find things or just felt generally stressed when I walk into my room.

The other day I was watching "Clean Freaks" on TLC. It really inspired me to become more organized.  Now, I don't want to be THAT crazy! Sometimes I feel too much organization and structure is not a good thing.  However, I would like when I have my own place again, to walk into it and feel refreshed, not stressed. I want to have a way to keep my papers in order so that I can easily find the things that I need and don't have to search for a long time.

Part of organization is also keeping things clean.  I have really made an effort to keep up with picking things up after myself, wiping things off as they need to be, and not letting things sit on the counter or my bed. I realized that even though I'm not living in my own house right now, that I will never be used to taking care of a house, until I begin.  So I have started now. And trust me, my mom is loving it!

Art has always been very important to me. However, I lost my inspiration to do any kind of art over the last few years.  A lot has happened that has forced me to re-examine where and how art fit into my life.  The biggest part of it is Photography.  I have always loved being behind the camera and seeing something that someone else may not be able to see.

Recently I attended a fashion photography workshop that taught me about the business of photography as well as opened my eyes to a whole different world of possibilities!  I don't know yet what direction I want to take my photography business, however I am beginning to refocus and figure out exactly where I want to put all my attention. This new found inspiration is exactly what I needed to get myself back out there.  Now, I still have so much work ahead of me, but I got the push I needed.

I also learned that inspiration isn't always just in existence.  Some times you have to search it out.  You have to push forward and do things that aren't necessarily good, to get to a place of greatness.  That applies to every aspect of my life.

I have always wanted everything I do to feel inspired, and in all reality I need to focus on the moments between inspiration to reach a place that is truly great.


09 10 11 12
Blogging tips