At the beginning of 2012, my husband and I determined we needed to get back to healthier eating. We would not have said our habits were totally unhealthy, but they definitely needed to be readjusted. This “reset” back to healthier eating has had me thinking and reflecting regularly throughout the process. So I have all these random thoughts I thought I would share.
We were eating unhealthier than we thought because we were not really aware of what we were eating. Does that mean we didn’t know what we were eating as we were eating it? No! When you eat from meal to meal, day to day, week to week and don’t keep track of what you are eating, the bad stuff sneaks in, and we tend to forget the last time we splurged.
This became evident the first 2 weeks when we put restrictions on foods we were eating. I would randomly think about getting something to eat and realize it wasn’t something I should eat. This happened enough to make me realize I was definitely not eating as healthy as I thought I was. I also was not intentional with vegetables. If I didn’t want to include them at a lunch or dinner, I didn’t. Now vegetables at lunch and dinner are a part of our daily eating.
I have seen a lot of benefits already in the last 7 weeks from healthy eating (and we have a week break in there for vacation). I have to admit that losing weight has been a huge benefit. When I admit to my excitement about losing weight, this isn’t just about how I look. It is also about seeing the physical results of what putting healthy foods into my body does for my body.
It is also about how I feel physically. The obvious one everyone always says is more energy. I don’t know if I can claim that I have tons of increased energy, but when I eat healthy foods and the right amounts, I don’t feel sluggish. You know that feeling after a big meal when you don’t want to move. I am energized by my meals and don’t feel the blahs or bloating or misery.
To me that is rewarding.
I have had some minor recurring health issues for years. This healthy reset has minimized some of those issues. On vacation, they came back. After getting back to it this week, they are once again, minimized.
My body is trying to tell me something! Right?
In the days leading up to our reset, I had read several articles on the benefits of different types of teas. I knew I was going to have to give up my flavored creamers on this eating plan, so I decided that it would be better to go off coffee and drink tea. This would avoid the disappointment of not having my morning coffee the way I want it, and tea would provide me with other healthy benefits.
What I realized? I have not missed coffee like I thought I would.
On vacation, I went back to drinking coffee as a treat, and I really did not enjoy it like I thought I would. I was actually excited about getting back to my tea. I love the variety I am drinking – green tea, English breakfast tea, earl grey, black tea, white tea, African roibus. The list can keep going. I actually had forgotten how much I enjoyed tea.
I have rediscovered my passion for cooking. I actually never lost it, but I just did not prioritize it. Our healthy reset requires me to cook regularly. I look forward to cooking again!
Last night, Greg was not going to be home for dinner, so I had planned on just having leftovers. I decided to cook a healthy meal anyway just because I knew I would enjoy it. I love not just the cooking, but the process…looking for new recipes, planning the meals, grocery shopping, and of course cooking them.
I especially enjoy the satisfaction when a healthy meal tastes amazing. It is such a misconception that we can’t enjoy healthy food because it doesn’t taste good.
Being healthy is easier when you are doing it with other people. I have always done significantly better with healthy eating when Greg and I commit to do it together. I have also found encouragement with my friend Rochelle. We both are on www.myfitnesspal.com, and the community aspect provides built in accountability.
The more I eat healthy, the easier it is to resist temptation. I walked by all kinds of goodies today at work. They always seem to be everywhere. I did not have the desire to indulge that I normally would have had.
The more I eat healthy, the more I crave it. I get excited about eating vegetables and fruit. eating the right foods puts my taste buds into “perspective” so that I have an appreciation for these foods.
We have a free day once a week. I love eating those treats without guilt knowing one day a week is moderation in practice. I’ll say it again. No guilt! When we were on this eating plan in the past, I remember my perfectionistic, over-achieving self finding freedom in the free day. We don’t call it cheating, because eating sweets or a juicy hamburger should not be associated with guilt when done in moderation!
There is a spiritual link to our eating. I don’t know if I can explain this in tangible words, and I am sure this looks different for everyone to different degrees. I have already posted in the past about emotional eating, but I am referring to something different in this statement. The spiritual link is related to how I feel God wants me to care for my body. I will just leave it at that for now and let you contemplate on what that might mean for you.
I know I probably could continue with more random thoughts, but I will stop here and let all of it simmer some more.
I am trying to figure out what the next phase of healthy eating looks like. Last time we did this eating plan, we continued it well beyond the 12 week challenge. Eventually, we got off track. It makes me wonder, will it be sustainable this time?
I would love to hear your thoughts on how healthy eating has impacted your life. Feel free to share even if your reflections on healthy eating have ended in frustration or failure.