It's The Season Of Diets And Exercise.
I wanted to share this piece here with you all. This is my January piece for www.lifeplus.ie which I am delighted to write for monthly since September and if you haven't been over for a read of the other talented women there you need to. Hope you enjoy !
It’s that time of year again when the Christmas season is over, I hope you all had a great one and the new Year has started. We all had fun and over indulged over the Christmas season, I know I did a lot and now it’s time for the guilt to kick in. For the next few weeks we will be bombarded with all the latest diets we have try, the latest and greatest exercise routines that we all need to take part in and why we all need to be two dress sizes at least smaller than we are. All of this to be honest just makes me feel miserable. I do not need to see someone who is photo shopped within an inch of their life, with not a lump or bump in sight telling me I can look like that if I eat/ exercise or diet because let’s face it, that is not going to happen.
What I can tell you though is a little story of how I found the best diet and I hate that word, I have ever tried. I have over the years tried them all, from Weight Watchers to Unislim and others in between and all they did was make me starve myself lose loads of weight only to put it all back on again and sometimes even more than when I started. Then about two years ago now I found out I am coeliac which for me means I can’t eat anything with Gluten. While I was having tests done I met a very blunt gastroenterologist who told me I was obese, it was completely my own fault and that no one had ever gotten fat eating fruit and vegetables. I left that consultants room in total shock, close to tears, with a long list of what foods I couldn’t eat and my backside firmly kicked. I was so mad that the consultant was right, it was my own fault because every food I had eaten I had chosen it and now I had to take my time with my food and food choices. My food choices now needed to be ones that would nourish my body and not because I wanted to satisfy my sweet tooth.
Over the following months I cut out all treats, caffeine and nearly all processed foods. I started to think more about my food choices, I ate all the fruit and vegetables I wanted, I had my fruit bars for my treats, I ate a huge breakfast, lunch and dinner but all the junk was gone and what surprised me the most was I wasn’t hungry at all.
I had full fat everything like milk, yoghurts, cheese butter and only gluten free brown bread no white bread, gluten free brown rice pasta and do you know what? It was the healthiest I felt in years!. I felt lighter, had more energy, my skin after a few months looked much better and I dropped two clothes sizes with no exercise only my usual day to day on the farm. Now why I am telling you this is after nearly a year of eating slower and more mindfully I found the world of gluten free chocolate, crisps and sweet treats and fell off the wagon totally and now I am back where I started two clothes sizes bigger again. I feel tired now all the time, my skin is dry and old looking and I don’t have the same energy as I had and it needs to change.
So it has to change, I need to go back to what I know makes me feel better and what better time to start than a new year. If you would like to join me in this slower and more mindful eating year I would be delighted with the support. This isn’t a diet and the end goal isn’t to drop dress sizes, it’s to feel better in our skin, to have more energy and be good to our bodies we only have the one.
Here is what my plan is for this year, you can try the same or make your own :
· To think about all the foods I eat, why I want it and will it nourish my body.
· Drink more water.
· Cut down sugar in tea/coffee to having none as soon as I can.
· Eat no diet/low fat foods as these sometimes contain more sugar than full fat.
· Eat more fruit and vegetables.
· When possible cook all my meals.
· When I am longing for something sweet and there will be times try to find a healthier alternative to what I would normally pick.
· Do not weigh myself.
· Try to move a little bit more everyday than I am now.
· Enjoy my food, make it a slow time in my day and look forward to feeling better.
I want to feel the way I did a year ago before I slipped back into my bad habits and now I have shared it with you all I am hoping you will join me in taking our time and being more mindful of what we nourish our bodies with.