Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Embrace

I came across this website for a documentary while reading this post on CleanandDelicious.com.  I read her post and then immediately went over to the website to watch the video.  It hit home.

I struggle with confidence and self esteem.  I guess digging REALLY deep I can say that I always have. In high school and unfortunately as young as junior high I turned to drugs for a sense of belonging in a group of people and to make me fun or fit in...  Luckily I got out of that crowd of people by my senior year of high school and before it ever became a real problem.

And then I think a lot of people get hit with the shock that who you were in high school doesn't matter in the real world anyway. That sense of belonging I had in my tiny town didn't matter when I graduated and moved away.

Then after high school I put on weight. At the time I thought it was the worst thing!  But now looking back- I think it was just me growing into my body.  I finally started to get hips and a butt. Now those are things I try to embrace.  Back then, I didn't love it.

Then of course started the ridiculous dieting cycle that I think most women go through.  The ups and downs and calorie restricting then putting the weight back on when I realized I can't maintain that forever.  I am just now realizing and accepting these patterns.

I have a huge problem with comparison.  I always have.  If only I could have her hair or her thighs.  That's what usually ends up bringing me down.  I think I mentioned before that I unfollowed a ton of people on Instagram recently because of this problem.

All of this is huge for me.  I have never admitted any of this out loud or even to myself until recently.  So I am working on it.  I am working on accepting me.  I am working on not turning to other people for my acceptance.  I am working on loving my body the way it is and working hard to become strong healthy and not just skinny.

I love the concept of this documentary and I think its something that women need to watch.  I hope they make it.  Its something we all need to see!!!

You can watch the video here.
You can contribute to the campaign here


XO,
Heather

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Intuitive Eating: My Thoughts

Now that you have a little backstory about what brought me to this book I want to talk about the book.



Here are the basic principles of the book:
source

The most informative section for me was the "reject the diet mentality" section.  It basically says the reason diets do not work is because we tell ourselves foods are good and bad.  We eat the good foods and stay away from the bad.  Then when the temptation gets too great we give into the "bad foods."  This causes us to feel bad about ourselves, like we are failures, which then causes us to binge.  The binge usually leads to more "bad" eating.  Then on Monday we vow to do better.

It also talks about the last supper mentality.  I know I've been guilty of this.  Sundays we stuff our face with everything because we are starting a new diet Monday.

It basically says to put weightloss on the back burner.  Your goal for eating this way should not be to lose weight.  It may happen. But it may not.  You should fall into your natural weight.  Your natural weight is what you maintain without trying.  

Another one of my favorite principles is "Exercise- feel the difference."  I like this because it says to find something you enjoy doing and do it.  Don't use exercise as a form of punishment.  Don't use exercise to burn X amount of calories because you were "bad" during the day.  I am VERY guilty of this.  I have 2 heart rate monitors and a fitbit.  I had been wearing one or the other or both all the time.  I wanted to see how many calories I burned to compare that to my eating in My Fitness Pal.  This is not the right way to look at exercise.

About two weeks ago when I started to try to change my thinking I decided to give those devices a rest.  I decided not to use them for a while.  I also decided instead of following a schedule for my workouts every day I would do what I wanted that day.  If I want to rest I will.  If I want to run instead of lift I will switch my days.  If I want to do yoga I will.  I am trying to change my thoughts about exercise. I used to enjoy running.  I did it almost every day because it was fun for me.  Exercise stopped being fun when it became about burning calories. I want it to be fun again.  For the past 2 weeks I have listened to my body every day to see what I wanted to do for movement that day.  This has felt so much better than telling myself well its back/bicep day so you better suck it up and do it whether you feel like it or not...

There is also a section on raising an intuitive eating child/ teenager.  I skipped that part.

The books has way more to offer.  These are just some of the chapters that stood out to me.

I think this book is great tool to start to see food, nutrition, and health from a different perspective.  Its the opposite of what we read every day in magazine, see on Instagram and social media, etc...  I have been trying to follow these principles daily, and I can say- I feel so much more free.  I haven't beat myself up about my eating habits since starting this.  I have overeaten a couple of times.  That is because at the time I let myself get too hungry before I ate again.  I would highly recommend it to anyone because it is just refreshing to see it all from a different view.

You can buy it here on Amazon.  Let me know if you read this book or have read it before and what you think!!

XO
Heather


I also wanted to include this AWESOME blogpost that I read yesterday about why this blogger stopped counting calories.  I honestly felt like I could've written it myself.  : 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Intuitive Eating: The Backstory

source



I figure I should start with the backstory of what brought me to this book.  I picked up this book last week on my way home from work after stalking Paige's blog, facebook, and instagram for suggestions on learning how to eat... I have been in a bit of a funk lately.  I feel like I have been on some type of diet for the past 2 years or so when I know I don't need to be.  At the time I did have some weight to lose and wasn't happy with my body.  I wasn't healthy.  I ate a lot of junk food and randomly did some kind of "work out" every once in a while.  That's when I found Tone It Up and running.  I lost the weight  and I enjoyed it all at the time.  But it sort of started a vicious cycle for me that I haven't quite learned how to recover from.  

But I honestly don't know how to eat.  This is a big thing for me to admit b/c I feel like amongst my friends and co-workers and family I am the go-to person for advice on healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle.  See, on the outside it may look like I have my shit together. I really don't. I mean, who does?!

My weight has fluctuated so much (according to the scale) for the past couple of years.  The crazy thing is that 1 year ago today I actually weighed 10 lbs more than right now but I wear the same size.  Its because I started lifting weights in November. So I know its MOSTLY muscle gain and some fat.  I let that scale # dictate my feelings about myself.  I know better. I don't know why I let it bother me.  Then it causes me to think I need to diet.  When in all reality I don't need to diet. I need to learn how to eat.- how to eat to fuel my body and maintain my weight.  I have no clue how to do that.

A few weeks ago this would be a typical day/ week for me:
Monday-Friday I would meal plan and bring my food to work every day.  Never eating out with co-workers or deviating from the plan.  I would eat at 7, 10, 12, 2, 5, and 7... Every day... Those exact times.  Regardless of whether I was hungry or starving I would eat at those times.  Because someone told me this is the way to eat.  Then if something unusual happened- like someone brought donuts- I would have 1, then another, then another... (True Story- this happened a few weeks ago).  I think its because I would tell myself "You can't have the donut. It is bad for you.  It is processed.  You are going to Mexico in a month."  But then after about 2 hours of telling myself that I would give in.  Then after having one I would get the f*ck it mentality b/c I already screwed up. So I would eat until I felt sick.
The weekends were a different story.  Because I was "good" all week I would splurge on the weekends.  Except I would splurge at every single meal.  We will eat out every meal Friday afternoon- Sunday night.  Add in some drinking with friends and I screwed up everything I did during the week.  So because I felt so bad about myself Sunday night I would vow to do better Monday and the cycle would start again.  I am positive I am not alone in this.

I had a realization a couple of weeks ago.  I honestly don't even remember  how it came about.  Maybe I looked at a picture of myself or something.  But at that moment I said to myself, "You look great. WTF is wrong with you?  You don't need to diet.  You need to learn how to eat."  So that is what I am on a quest to do... Learn how to properly eat and accept/love my body.

I went through and unfollowed a ton of people on Instagram.  I had to stop looking at everyone's pics of their abs in the morning.  I don't want to be a bikini competitor therefore I don't need to look to those people for inspiration or advice.  Its not practical.

Tone It Up was great in helping me initially lose the weight.  But now I need to learn how I can eat for the rest of my life.  Something that is easily sustainable.  Something that will make life easier and bring me joy and not stress.

So that is where I am right now.  Learning to listen to my body.  Stop dieting.  Stop restricting.  Learning to love to exercise again instead of doing it for calories burned.  Learning to love myself.  Learning to love my body.  Its a struggle.  Just yesterday I found myself looking at old pictures of myself thinking I needed to go on a diet before our trip to Mexico in 4 weeks b/c the scale says I'm 10lbs heavier than last year.

Next I'm going to do a book review/ overview of some of my thoughts on the book!

Have you ever tried Intuitive Eating?  Do you diet all the time?  Are you going through something similar?

XO,
Heather

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Journal

This is probably at least the 3rd time I have stopped blogging for a long period of time and restarted. I think it is because I don't know where I want to go with it. I need to stop trying to have a focus or a destination and just let it be.  I think that is something I struggle with in all aspects of my life.

So what inspired me to get started again this time?  Last night I had a realization- I don't feel balanced.     I am very successful at my job.  I have a successful position in my company.  I have amazing friends.  I am healthy and physically fit.  I am happy most of the time.  I have a great family.  Some things I feel like I don't have or can't find is creativity and fulfillment....  

Maybe I am looking at this all wrong.  I guess the term creativity is sort of relative.  I guess creativity can show up in many different forms.  I love the idea of doing creative things and making things. I'm  just not really good at it.  And that is where I struggle.  I'm not a good writer.  I definitely can't sing, or draw, or really make stuff.  I'm not very crafty.  I feel like I am lacking creativity altogether... Not just an outlet but the creative gene or something.

As far as fulfillment goes- I want to help people.  I want to find my purpose.  I have felt like it usually had something to do with helping people lose weight or get fit. {But honestly- I think that has caused more harm than good in my life.  More on that in another post.}  I don't know how to find my purpose.

Last night I googled "How to channel creative energy."  It brought me to a few articles about balancing your chakras.  This is something I never really looked into. But now I'm extremely intrigued. 

I'm thinking I need to focus on balancing the 2nd Chakra.  Hell I probably need to balance all of them.  For now this is what I am focusing on.    I found this info:

2nd chakra:
Balanced: Vibrant physical and emotional health, feeling of well being, laugh easily and often, healthy sexual and creative outlets

Unbalanced: Emotionally instable or numb, fear of change, sexual dysfunction, depression, anorexia, alcohol or drug abuse
Stepping up to the 2nd Chakra, it’s time to move out of the survival mode of the 1st Chakra’s focus on your basic physical needs and start having fun feeling sensual and sexy, and engaging your creative self. The 2nd Chakra attends to your desire for interpersonal relationships and invites others into your life to share your passions, sexuality, and creativity.


The 2nd Chakra level primarily focuses on emotional and sexual energies. Balanced emotions promote a sense of self-worth that allows one to accept all the good, including abundance and prosperity, into his or her life. And balanced sexual energy generates romance and healthy sexual relationships. The craving to create something physical, outside of oneself, develops at this level, and drawing, painting, writing, and music are excellent outlets for this desire.


A balanced 2nd Chakra leads to feelings of wellness, plenty, pleasure, and joy. You can see this exemplified by those who are fully connected and attuned to their physical and emotional centers. They are comfortable with their bodies and their emotions. Sexual and non-sexual relationships are healthy, and they are based on trust and mutual respect. There is a passion for life that is expressed in everything they do.


Imbalances in the 2nd Chakra are characterized by “living in your head,” being out of touch with what your body is telling you, and denying yourself pleasure. Anorexia, bulimia, drug and alcohol abuse, and other addictions are attempts to nurture oneself in this kind of emotionally disconnected or detached state. Sexual dysfunctions are also directly related to imbalances in the 2nd Chakra.


An overactive 2nd Chakra can result in lustful, arrogant, or conceited behavior, and an aggressive desire to control others; whereas an underdeveloped 2nd Chakra can manifest as distrust, resentment, fear, apathy, pessimism, and anti-social conduct. It can also show up as continually worrying about what others think and always following the crowd.


The 2nd Chakra is a very important building block in the Chakramid structure. As such, it is perfectly positioned and proportioned right above the root Chakra, which is the foundation or base of the Chakramid. Emotional awareness and connectedness will become more and more important as you ascend up the Chakramid, because emotions are the magnifying glass through which you will examine, study, evaluate (and ultimately communicate with) all of your Chakras.

So I am hoping this blog will help me let out some of that energy I feel like is built up.  I have no focus for the blog. Maybe people will read it. Maybe not.  I just need a place to be me.  I need a bigger sense of fulfillment.  Maybe this will give it to me.  Maybe not.  Maybe it will be a place that inspires me to do something else that will give me a sense of fulfillment in my life.  The title is "Diary of a Simple Life."  So that's what this will be- a diary... a journal of some sort... 

XO
Heather

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

21 Day Fix Results and Final Review


Well I did it!!  I finished the 21 Day Fix & was very pleased with my results.  Here were my final stats:
Starting 2/17:
Weight 134
Body fat: 20.7%
waist 25"
Hips 36"
Left thigh 21"
Right thigh 22"

3/10
Weight: 125.2
Body fat: 19.5%
Wait 24.5"
Hips 35.5"
Left Thigh 21"
Right 21.3"

I'm really not good with measuring.  I feel like I didn't measure in the same spots for my legs... 
I am extremely happy with my after pics.  I didn't have a lot to lose and my biggest goal was to get my body fat under 20% and I did that. I accomplished my goal!  I am blown away.  Everyone in my test group had crazy results.  Some lost as much as 15 pounds.  Some lost no pounds but a ton of inches and gained so much energy.  There are so  many different ways to measure your success.  I look at pictures and my body fat to measure my success.  

Final thoughts on the program:
-I didn't love the workouts enough to continue them after the program.  They were good- don't get me wrong.  Simple classic workout moves that are effective.  I just like going to the gym, running or doing T25 more.   
- The best part of this program is the meal system.  It opened my eyes to my eating habits and how my body responds to different foods.  I honestly felt so disappointed for so long b/c I felt like I was doing all that I could with my eating to see results.  I was lying to myself. I definitely wasn't. I was eating the right foods MOST of the time.  But the wrong portions and too much of one thing and not enough of the other.
- I ended with the 3 Day Quick Fix.  It is a SIMPLE BASIC 3 day program Autumn uses to get ready for a bikini competition.  No fruit, no dairy, VERY few carbs, lots of protein and veggies.  I learned my body responds really well to that. 
- The program is not gimmicky.  It is basic workout moves and basic fundamental nutrition.  I am actually following the program still to maintain my weight.  It takes the guesswork out of everything for me. Its just easier.  It can also work with any dietary needs.  I am using this with my knowledge from the Tone It Up Plan together.
-The knowledge I gained from this program was worth so much more than what I spent on it.

Here are some before and after pics.  










The program has actually sold out twice now because it's just such a great program for the price. Beach body really never disappoints. But this program is extra special because it focuses so much on nutrition.

I would love to help you reach your goals and get bikini ready! 

Xo, 
Heather