We all know the majority of new year resolutions regard losing weight; there’s something about welcoming a new year that gives us hope we can actually stick to it this time around and make it happen. I’ve been one of those people. In fact, I almost became one of those people in 2016, too. But I’ve come to realize I don’t need to be a new me. I like me!… Hell, I LOVE me! My fiancé loves me, my family and friends love me. Why should I change me? I shouldn’t, and you shouldn’t either, more than likely. But I do firmly believe I need to change the way I think about food.
In order to get out of the rut I’m in, I needed to know what helped get me here. And I know exactly what it was. You may end up knowing more about me than you’d like if you read this portion of the post, so, feel free to skip ahead. Around this time two and a half years ago I was feeling amazing, and along with feeling amazing came fitting into my size 6 pants, medium shirts, and wearing a two-piece swim suit with pride and confidence. I had tons of energy, I was exercising daily, and I was eating healthy food and drinking loads of water. Then something happened. I found out I was pregnant. Whoa! I was a mere four weeks along, to the day. My head was spinning; I went from feeling disbelief, to numb, to panic, to calm. I told Randy, and he was amazing, but only after saying “no you’re not” a few hundred times. The following day, I felt different, and not in a good way. Something was preparing me for another blow; I just knew it. I began to cramp, and I’ll spare you the details from there. I went to see my doctor, and he confirmed the pregnancy would likely end in a miscarriage. He recommended letting nature run its course. And it did on July 4th. After days and days of blood work, ultrasounds, and several tests, I was told to pretend I was never pregnant, that doing that would be easiest for myself. *Insert eye roll here* It didn’t make it easier. I wasn’t ready for a child, I didn’t want a child; Randy didn’t either. But none of that made the loss any easier to cope with, and I went into a downward spiral of self hatred, blame, and depression. That’s when I stopped caring about myself. I blamed myself. And within a 48 hour period I had managed to feel more emotions than I ever had before. It was mentally exhausting. Added to my grief was the fact that three co-workers were expecting babies, and they all were due within a week or two of when my due date would have been. They were daily reminders of what could have been, and it hurt. But I had an incredible support system to help get me back on track. Randy had his own feelings to sort through, but he managed to put mine first. He was there for me when I needed him to be, and backed off when I needed to be alone. It took me a while to feel like myself again. A change in jobs helped tremendously, supportive friends and family helped more than they’ll ever know, and Randy was my rock. It took a while, but I stopped blaming myself. And I realize some things just don’t work out sometimes, and it’s almost always for the best. Before I came to realize all of this, and within those months of self loathing, I had managed to lose nearly all of my energy and to gain 60 pounds. Yes, 60. I’ve been able to lose 10 or so here and there, but I haven’t done what I need to do in order to keep it off, lose more, and up my energy level. As previously mentioned in another post, 2016 will be a huge year for me. I’ll be 29 on April 1st, Randy and I will be getting married on October 29th, and I think it’s a great year to get back to living a healthy life; that’s my goal. My goal isn’t to lose a certain amount of weight within a certain amount of time, but instead is to get healthy. I want my energy back, I want to know I’m doing what I can to ensure I live a long, healthy, and happy life. And that’s exactly what I’m doing.
I know there’ll be hiccups along the way. I know I may give in every once in a while to temptation and eat the ice cream, or fries, or both. And that’s okay. In the meantime, a few tools that have helped me tremendously are listed below. These tools are helping to keep me on track, and helping me achieve my goal of living a healthier life. It’s all about finding what works for YOU, and I hope one (or all!) of the following can help you, too. With that being said, cheers to a healthier us, my friends!
Eat to Live, by Joel Fuhrman, M.D. – I read this book a few years ago and it really hit home. Back then, my goal was strictly losing weight; I didn’t much care about the whole getting healthy thing, I just wanted to look great in a bikini. Now though, with a goal of being healthy, it becomes useful again. Dr. Joel Fuhrman is a board-certified family physician who specializes in preventing and reversing disease through nutritional and natural methods. His other books include Super Immunity and Eat for Health. Eat to Live makes sense, and it helped me understand the importance of nutrient dense food. It’s geared towards helping people lose weight, but it’s a great read for anyone wanting help with choosing healthier food options. There are shopping lists, meal plans, numerous success stories, and loads of information in here that I find valuable. I keep this book on our kitchen counter now; it serves as a reminder and helps me pick healthier options like a banana or orange instead of reaching for that bag of cookies in the cabinet.
Where to purchase: I found my copy on eBay for only $7.00.
Meal Prep Haven, Three Compartment Food Containers – I stay on track a lot more easily when I have taken the time to plan meals, especially for lunch. One of my goals is to take lunch to work, and not eat out. I received these containers for review from the friendly people over at Meal Prep Haven, and they couldn’t have come at a better time! You may think a food container is a food container and any will do, but that’s just not true. Quality does matter. Meal Prep Haven offers containers that are:
They’re reusable and help save cabinet space by being stackable. But one of the best things about Meal Prep Haven is they offer a LIFETIME GUARANTEE for all of their products. That alone speaks volumes. There are multiple designs to choose from, from single compartments to three. And they even offer a portion control container kit, which is something I’m going to purchase when they restock them. All containers are airtight and leak proof. They’re built for long-term use and reinforced to prevent cracking. I really can’t say enough positive things about these containers. They’ve been a huge help.
Where to purchase: Visit Meal Prep Haven to take a look at their containers. They’re having an amazing sale at the moment, and some container options have already sold out, so grab them while you can!
If you’d prefer to purchase these via Amazon, use code VWURQ5TJ during checkout to save 10% off your purchase!
Aroma Rice Cooker & Food Steamer – I love steaming raw veggies. All of the steamers I looked at were big, and I wanted a smaller unit, something that wouldn’t take up too much storage space. This one is perfect! I’ve had this steamer for years, I’ve used it hundreds of times, no problems and perfect food every single time.
Where to purchase: I purchased mine from Target for around $22.00.
My Fitness Pal – Nearly everyone has heard about My Fitness Pal and used it at some point in their lives. It’s my favorite health app. It keeps me on track, and I love that I can enter my own recipes. If you don’t want to download and use an app on your phone, I highly recommend keeping some form of a food journal. You’d be surprised by how much food you eat sometimes, snacks you forget about; journals can put that into perspective and help curb impulse eating.
Where to purchase: My Fitness Pal is free in the app store!
Herbal Tea – I drink herbal tea every day. Whether it be a blend specifically created for women’s health, immune support, or healthy skin, I drink it. It relaxes me, helps keep me hydrated, and I notice positive changes in my skin, mood, and overall well being when I drink my teas. I’m a big fan of red clover blossom, marshmallow root, milk thistle, and chai roobius. Do your research, find the blends that will help with your goals and make you feel best. Yogi Tea, Celebration Herbals, and Alvita are some of my favorite brands. It’s best to choose organic and caffeine free, if possible.
Where to purchase: I purchase all of my teas from Vitacost. Their prices are amazing! You’ll find a little bit of everything there; it’s one of my favorite sites.