I know what healthy foods are and I eat them because they give me energy and make me feel good. But you know what else makes me feel good? --Pizza (my favorite food) and ice cream. I am not going to tell myself I can’t eat something, because for what? All so I can make my body look a certain way? The thing is, I don’t workout because I hate my body. I don’t do anything because I hate my body. I love my body; I love everything about it. I workout and I eat healthy because I LOVE my body.
I’ve tried counting macros, I’ve tried cycling, I’ve even tried vegan. Nothing worked because nothing felt natural. What feels natural is listening to my body. Listening to when I am hungry, when I am full, and when I am just thirsty. I have become so attune to my body and it is the best change I have ever made in my life. I don’t worry about counting calories or anything like that. When I am hungry, I eat… The reason that I keep my figure while using this approach is because I make good choices and I exercise.
Along with this post, I decided to track everything I ate yesterday. I wanted some chips, so I told myself one handful was enough. My meal prep is going to go bad if I don't finish it all, so I threw some of my broccoli, ground turkey, and rice in with one egg and called it breakfast! I tried hummus with some bell pepper for lunch. And for dinner? Rachel wanted California Pizza Kitchen. Pizza is truly my favorite food. Yesterday, I knew that I had eaten so well, so I decided pizza was the way to go for dinner! Instead of getting our own pizza, we split a pizza and a salad! Our salad had some avocado, chicken, tomatoes, and egg on it and our pizza was just cheese! And after? You guessed it, Rachel and I LOVE ice cream so of course, we grabbed a kiddy cup! It is all about moderation and still making smart choices even when you are eating on the unhealthy side. There is not reason to call this a 'cheat' meal. Because I am not cheating on anything! I don't understand 'cheat' meals. If you just eat foods that fuel your body and you don't limit yourself, you won't feel obligated to binge on a box of donuts because you have been telling yourself no for so long. Don't deprive yourself, that is where problems start to arise!
Okay so here- for those of you that don’t know what intuitive eating is, it is basically eating foods that are healthy for you and but limiting yourself of the foods that make your soul happy. Let your body guide you.
There are 5 keys to intuitive eating:
Eat when you are hungry
Stop eating when you are full
Do not deprive yourself of anything
The point of intuitive eating is to learn how to listen to your body. Sometimes when we think we feel hunger, we are really just thirsty or bored. Sometimes we are full and we don’t realize it because we aren’t listening for the signs. It is something that takes time to learn. I’m not perfect at eating intuitively. Sometimes I eat too much and sometimes I don’t trust my body. We are all human, nothing we do is perfect; we just have to keep trying until we reach a comfortable spot for OUR bodies. Find YOUR happy spot.
I have myself on a eating schedule that I try my best to stick to. Justin always jokes about how I am always hungry. My schedule is trying to eat something every 2-3 hours. If I can’t meet this time frame, I will make sure I have some water on me so I can make sure to keep my metabolism in check. Everything I do: meal prep, plan workouts, plan my day out around when I will eat/workout; is because it keeps me on a set schedule. I have come to finally understand my body. I know when it is hungry, I know when I have enough energy to run, and I know if I will have enough energy in me to push through a lifting session. I know after a workout I need a mixture of carbohydrates and protein and the only reason I keep an eye on my dairy intake is because the bloating it gives me makes me feel uncomfortable.
The best change I ever made was becoming an intuitive eater. I love my major for really teaching me about this topic. I know about nutrition, I know about lifting weights, and I now know so much more about my body and what it can handle. I don’t shoot for a skinny look and I’m not constantly trying to remove every ounce of fat off my body. I am a woman. I am a healthy woman. My body fat percentage is in the healthy range and I am happy when I look in the mirror… must I really NEED to diet? I wish that I could share this new way of life with everyone. I feel so free in my choices and I am truly happy.
Don’t focus on lifting weights to tone under your arms. Don’t focus on eating a salad to become skinny. Don’t focus on running to lose fat.
Focus on lifting weights so you have strong bones, muscle strength, and a healthy body. Focus on eating a salad because you want to ADD more vegetables in your diet. And lastly, focus on running BECAUSE YOU ENJOY RUNNING! Stop making yourself live to the standards because society thinks you need to. If you want a beer, drink one. If you don’t want to go for a run, don’t go for a run. As long as you FEEL healthy, your doctor agrees that you are healthy, and you are in love with the person you are… then to me, everything will keep falling right into place.
Focus on yourself because you love yourself.