I used to tell myself all the time that everything is okay in moderation. That’s how I would justify that piece of chocolate cake or the hard cider (or two) I’d have with dinner or the piece of pumpkin pie (or two) I’d have as a mid-afternoon snack. But you know what happens when you use this justification? It doesn’t become a once-in-a-while thing. It becomes an everyday thing. It creeps up on you. I know it crept up on me. Starting around Thanksgiving until this past Sunday, everything was “in moderation.” And it was okay because it was the holidays. Right? Well, for me, that meant increased break-outs, horrible sleep patterns, exhaustion, terrible mood swings (sorry Scott), and just in general feeling like crap. And while I was still working out, I didn’t like the way I looked or how much I weighed. Now, I don’t normally weigh myself, but Scott and I started a Whole30 program on Sunday, January 11th. That required taking before pictures and weighing ourselves. Needless to say, I am so happy to be doing this program! I am not happy with where I am right now!
Now you may be asking, what exactly is a Whole30 program? Check out the whole program here http://whole30.com/. But to sum it up, it’s basically a short-term nutritional reset of your system over a period of 30 days. It is set up to help you stop unhealthy cravings and habits (mine are sweets and alcohol), restore a healthy metabolism, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system. It removes certain food groups, like sugar (alcohol is included in this category), grains, dairy, and legumes that could be having an adverse effect on your health and fitness. The best way to see if they are affecting you is to remove them from your diet! The 30 day time period gives your body a chance to reset and heal itself. And it’s easy. You just eat real, whole food! More (and more) vegetables, some fruit, more protein, more seafood, eggs, and plenty of good fats from oils, nuts, and seeds. And it’s only for 30 days! This isn’t meant to be a life-long eating plan, just a short-term nutritional reset! The best part is you don’t have to count calories! You don’t weigh yourself every day! You eat when you’re hungry and you stop when you’re full! You just make sure to eat foods that have a short ingredient list, or better yet, no ingredient list at all!! Today, for lunch, I had Brussel sprouts, asparagus, and a deer stew with a bunch of veggies, plus a salad with guacamole. It was delicious! And kept me full all afternoon!
This will be my third Whole30 I’ve done. I’m on day three and so far, I’m doing well. I’m a bit more hungry than normal as my body adjusts to less carbs and fewer empty calories. I’ll admit, I was having a lot of fun over this past month or so (since Thanksgiving). I definitely enjoyed all the goodies that were brought over for Thanksgiving dinner, including mac and cheese and all the sweets. And I more than enjoyed all the Christmas baked goods that were brought into the office and brought home. And I slowly got back into the habit of having one (or two) hard ciders every night with dinner. With a move sandwiched in between the holidays, plus lots of unpacking, the drinks started going down easier and easier. Except my sleep starting become more and more sparse and my mood swings starting getting worse and worse. Seriously, I’d get mad for no reason…and I’d stay mad, not knowing what was actually wrong.
So needless to say, this Whole30 is definitely needed. My body doesn’t handle sugar and/or alcohol the way it used to (or the way I thought it used to). I have very quick, very negative affects when I have it. And it was becoming a daily habit! Worse, I was starting to crave it! I wanted something sweet every day, sometimes multiple times a day. And it was super easy to crack a hard cider as soon as I got home from the gym. I used to be an occasional drinker or an occasional sweets person. But over this past month, it became an everyday thing. And that’s what happens when you use the justification that everything is okay in moderation. Don’t get me wrong, I know that after the Whole30 is done, I will probably have a drink or some sweets every now and again. But I’ll also know that I feel better, sleep better, look better, act better, when I don’t have them all the time. And it will be easier to say no because I’ll have just done it for 30 days!!
What do you think? Could you use a Whole30? Let me know your thoughts on this type of program. Does it make sense to you? It’s definitely a great program, but I know it can be difficult to follow, especially when eating out or going to parties. Find a group, ask a friend, or ask me to help you with it! It can be done! And you will see great results!!
On another note, Scott and I got a new washer and dryer yesterday :) Yes, it’s totally the little things that make me super happy!
I hope you all are having an amazing week! Day three has been super easy…I’ve had a couple sweet cravings on days 1 and 2, but I’ve resisted and kept myself super full so I don’t slip up. Let me know how I can help. I’d love to help you out with your program and reset :)
With love and wellness,
So our house had a little mishap today. My boyfriend’s 5-year old daughter was playing with the husky, Eli, with a massive rope toy. She was swinging it around, hitting the coffee table and sofa. I asked/told her twice to stop and get away from the furniture. Both times, she moved away from the couch, but after the second time, I walked back into the kitchen and the next thing I heard was a loud crash. I immediately knew what it was based on the sound. I walked around the corner and the tree was on the ground. I immediately knew some of the ornaments had been broken. See, this year, we used my small 4.5′ fake tree because we were in the process of moving (Scott and I moved in together) and knew we wouldn’t have time for anything else. On that note, we also only used my ornaments because we knew exactly where they were and wouldn’t have to get anything else from the attic.
I have to admit, I was devastated cleaning up the mess. My heart was broken as we picked up the tree and all the little pieces of the broken ornaments. I have LOTS of pug ornaments that I’ve accumulated over the years (thanks mom and Court). I wanted to cry. But I realized as we were cleaning up, me and Scott and his two sons, that this mess…this disaster, had brought all of us together to work together to clean up. Scott and his oldest son helped find pieces of the ornaments and glue them back together. In all, we actually only lost one ornament that had shattered into several pieces. The ones we glued back together, while they may have a little part missing from here and there, are still usable. It actually turned into a fun afternoon putting everything away and figuring out what pieces went to which ornaments.
But in going through this, I realized how much I have grown up (yes, it’s taken me a long time to realize that, LOL). In the past, I would have been so angry and upset and crying and been very ugly about the whole situation. In fact, I think Scott was more upset about it because he knew how much my ornaments meant to me (they all have some sentimental value of some sort…I have lots of them with my pugs’ names on them…luckily, none of those broke). I told him, “It’s fine, sweetheart. The tree is fine and the ornaments are just things. She’s not hurt and the dog’s not hurt and nothing is seriously damaged. It’s okay.” And I really meant it.
I don’t know why I felt the need to share this with you all, but it’s part of my 2015 resolutions. I want to focus more on the positives in my life and stop complaining so much. I have so much to be thankful and grateful for. I could’ve been angry and upset and made the situation so much worse. Scott’s daughter was crying and I walked up to her and told her that it upset me that she knocked the tree down, but that I was glad she was okay. I wiped her eyes and helped her blow her nose and got her something to drink. I calmed her down and in the end, she came over and helped us put the ornaments away. And that, all of us, working and laughing together, is what I’m so grateful for. It made it all worth it.
Bad things happen…mistakes happen. That’s life. But it’s how you handle it that really makes you who you are. Focus on the good things that come out of those mistakes and you will be much happier. And on the plus side, our Christmas decorations are down and we can get them stored in the attic :) One less project for this weekend.
I hope you all have an amazing weekend and focus on all the positives in your life! Write down one to two things a day that you are grateful for and you’ll start to see a positive shift in your attitude and your life.
With love and wellness,
Do you ever feel like a failure when it comes to eating? I know I do. Especially around this time of year. All those delicious treats, full of sugar and chocolate and yummy goodness. For the most part, I eat pretty healthy. And I’ll indulge every now and again on something sweet. But lately it seems like I’ve been going crazy on the indulging. And when I do, I feel like a failure and I beat myself up over it. Take this morning for instance. My office picks a week around Christmas where people bring in treats every day. So there are a ton of yummy treats in our break room. So back to this morning. I get to work and have the best of intentions to stay away from the break room. I start out really well and have a banana. But it’s like the break room is calling my name. I can hear the cookies calling me. So I walk by (I have to walk past it to get to the printer) and oops. I grabbed a cookie. And I enjoyed it. It was delicious. But then I immediately felt like a failure and felt ashamed for giving in. Which is crazy!! It’s food!! It’s not a drug or alcohol or something totally harmful. Except… It is. Sugar is a drug. It is addictive. And once you start, you can’t stop. I know that’s true for me. I’ve done a few sugar detoxes because I know I’m addicted. And when I don’t eat it, I feel better, my face is clearer, and I don’t have the guilt associated with eating it. Even better, I don’t crave it when I don’t eat it!!
But the real thing I struggle with is beating myself up over it. I struggle with this idea of being perfect. Or what I think “perfect” should look like. I should eat healthy, be happy all the time, have clear skin, be fit and toned with zero flaws, always look my best, etc, etc. But let’s be realistic. That. Is. Impossible. And all it does is create anxiety and unhappiness and stress!! Because here’s the harsh truth. Nobody is perfect!!! I seriously struggled with this for years! I thought I had to get good grades or my parents would be disappointed. I thought I had to please all my friends and family or they would be mad at me. I thought I had to have clear, flawless skin or I wouldn’t be loved. I thought I had to be successful in my career/life or I would be a failure. I thought I had to rush to get married and have kids or I wasn’t as good as everyone else who had that. Can you imagine how stressful this thinking is?? I was miserable!!!! And worse, I didn’t like how I treated myself.
The long and the short of it is that I had to learn to love and accept myself. I had to recognize and accept that I am not perfect. And that it’s okay!! I had to focus on progress instead of perfection. I had to calm down my overthinking and my OCD. I won’t lie to you. It wasn’t easy and it took some learning and growing and some great friends to listen to me. I learned that I put so much pressure on myself to maintain good grades and a well put together life because I didn’t want to disappoint my family, in particular, my parents. I still struggle with this and care too much about what others think about me. What I tell myself every day is that I am the only person who can live my life. And everyone is going to judge and have an opinion. Not everyone is going to agree with my decisions. But who cares!!! It’s MY life. I’m the one who has to live with my decisions and choices. And the only person I should focus on making happy is myself. Because I am not responsible for other people’s happiness. No, I’m not going to purposefully make someone miserable, but every person is responsible for their own happiness. You have to find that within yourself first, otherwise you won’t be happy with anyone else either.
So I totally went off on a tangent there since I started with cookies and over-indulging. But it’s all related. It’s a continuous struggle to be okay with having a treat every now and again. And it’s been an ongoing battle to make my own decisions without worrying about what others will think. I’ve definitely improved drastically from where I used to be. And I continue to improve every day. But it’s still a struggle. One that I haven’t shared with many people because I felt ashamed that I lacked the self control to not eat (or overeat) the yummy treats. I also felt ashamed that I wasn’t perfect…that I couldn’t live up to this “ideal” woman.
But I’ll be the first person to tell you that I am SO MUCH happier without those thoughts. I am not perfect. And I am 100% okay with that. So I enjoy a sweet treat every now and again…big deal. I eat it slowly and really savor what I’m eating. There’s no sense in making myself feel bad for doing so. Enjoy life!! We only live it once!! But do it wisely and mindfully. Take care of your body and your mind and it will take care of you. I know that overindulging negatively affects me, so I have to be mindful of how I’m eating. Oh. And to be clear on my overindulging, I had one cookie yesterday and one today. That doesn’t make me a bad person!! It makes me someone who likes cookies. But who doesn’t?!?!
The main takeaway is that you should be happy and healthy however that works for you. And don’t beat yourself up for little slip-ups. Give yourself permission to enjoy those treats!! And give yourself permission to NOT be perfect!!! You know all those things you didn’t get done today? They will still be there tomorrow!! You don’t have to be superwoman (or man) and get everything done all at once. All you can do is take it one step at a time.
Smile :-). It’s another beautiful day!! And you are amazing exactly as you are!!
With love and wellness,