Wish me luck on a new quest for a healthier lifestyle

When I started this blog, it was mostly about health – or at least dietary intake (which admittedly was not always healthy) and fitness training. I think I reached the pinnacle of my health in February 2012 – thanks to a stint with Amy Layne on the DAMY bikini body plan, I had developed a very healthy attitude towards my diet and fitness, I loved my body, I was lean and strong, I ate a good amount of both healthy (fruit, veg, whole grains, nuts) and unhealthy (alcohol, cupcakes) things, and I was fit enough to run and complete a tough mudder. Pretty good all around.

Tough Mudder game face

Tough Mudder game face

Then things slid – I moved to Houston, I got pregnant and due to polyhydramnios was taken off all exercise, I finished my 12 week DAMY program and did not sign back up, I had a baby, I accepted I was allergic to fruit, I became a faculty member at an R1 institution at the time of great funding crises, I became a working mother and acquired a stay at home husband, to whom I charged the family cooking. A million and one wonderful excuses that kept me from living a healthy lifestyle.

I don’t think I realized how far things had slid until Amy Layne (my old DAMY coach) facebooked me out of the blue and asked how I was. Good question Amy, good question. Amy works hard with her clients to look after their mental and physical selves. I worked hard with Amy on body acceptance, and healthy (normal?) eating attitudes: how to listen to my body, how to remove guilt, but focus on health, how to relax (I still have my Heavenly accupressure mat that she sent me!). And still I love my body, I have stayed away from my eating demons, I am happy. But. BUT. The physical side? Ummmm…. yeah…. A McDonalds EVERY day (seriously, I did this)? A maximum of 1 serving of fruit or veg a day? Liquid intake consisting of ONLY Diet Coke and coffee? Carbs made up almost exclusively of vanilla goldfish and Cadbury’s Fingers? Seriously, my diet was exactly that: sugary hits of nutrient depleted food. And exercise? Forget it… it was firmly on the ‘to do’ list, never on the ‘done’ list.

What could I tell Amy? That she had spent 12 weeks coaching me, and working with me, emailing me and helping me for no show? That although I attribute recovering so quickly after my hemorrhage to my body fitness she gave me, I had let it slide? Seriously – eeek! You don’t know Amy, she cares so deeply about her clients (hence she still emails them 2 years later), I knew she would be upset and I couldn’t do it.

So, that was my turning point…. my kick up the backside. My ‘I need to do something’. Sadly (or maybe not so sadly) I am no longer in a place (mentally or otherwise) where I feel I want to make sudden drastic overhauls to my lifestyle.  And anyway, working with Amy made me swear off radical quick fixes (I am looking at you Master Cleanse. *shudder*). And my years of living badly and surviving have also made me fearless in the face of cupcakes and fries, so it’s not like I can be motivated to cut them out completely. So, I am making slow, manageable changes. A vegetable smoothie for breakfast in the morning….

1/2 avocado 1/2 cucumber 1/2 bunch fresh spinach 1 c coconut water 3 tsbp Fage 2%

1/2 avocado
1/2 cucumber
1/2 bunch fresh spinach
1 c coconut water
3 tsbp Fage 2%

(anyone who has smoothie recipes that don’t involve fruit – please share!)

And at least 2 veggie snacks a day (carrots, peppers or tomatoes). I don’t care if my other snacks are indeed goldfish, I have to eat veggies twice a day. And I am aiming for one salad a day as well. Considering that my BMI is healthy, I figure that that takes care of my diet fairly well – how badly can I eat around that? (Hey, don’t answer that).

I am drinking a lot more water and a lot less Diet Coke (the jury is pretty out on whether this is good for you or not, but hey, surely it can’t hurt?). And exercise…. hmmmmm… well, I am getting out of the house every night and planning to run three times a week (kinda only making it once a week, but hey…). I have a million excuses reasons why my exercise plan is not going as it should, but I’ll save you from them. Suffice to say that for 40 minutes every evening I am least upright, outside, moving and not on the sofa eating chips.

Sam and Ellie benefit from the walking too

Sam and Ellie benefit from the walking too

Small steps, but please, wish me luck sticking to them! I am amazed at how I have changed from telling people they can do anything health related, to openly struggling to make the very basics of a healthy lifestyle mine. I want to get back to my ‘old self’ now that I am settled into Houston, motherhood, faculty life, home ownership and whatnot. I want to have a healthy lifestyle. I can do this, right?

15 thoughts on “Wish me luck on a new quest for a healthier lifestyle

  1. autismthoughts

    I eat veggie crackers and use veggie pasta to help out with my veggie intake because I’ve never been very good at eating enough vegetables. A friend gave me some pea pods as a snack though and they were so delicious that I could definitely eat those every day.
    Good luck with your steps to get healthier. You can do it! 🙂


  2. frances

    I hear you. I got down to 134lbs before managing to conceive and now I’m back up at 150lbs. Very depressing. So September’s regime is zumba once a week with the odd exception for socialising and fewer tea and cake stops! Should help on the money front too.


  3. Me Post author

    Those are great tips!! I am going to try them (my son actually has the veggie pasta, so I can just eat his!). I’ll try the pea pods – that’s a neat idea. Thank you 🙂


  4. Chic in Academia

    You can totally do it!! I fell off the wagon, but planning to hop right back on any day now. 😋 I love how I feel when I’m in shape, but I had a lot to get off my to-do list leaving little time to work out. Change is a comin’ though!!


  5. Holistic Wayfarer

    Really proud of you. We are given one body this side of heaven. It’s up to us to stop making excuses and take ownership of our health and life. We also want to stick around for our grandkids. Impressive…the mudder, eh? =)

    Keep on!


  6. Me Post author

    Thank you!! Yes, it can be so hard to make time for it when work is busy and kids stop you having such a flexible schedule… I am committed though 🙂


  7. Me Post author

    Thank you. Every bit of encouragement stops me flaking out in these early, hard days 🙂 Yes, I did and completed the mudder. It was actually awesome and I miss feeling that fit and strong. What you say about ownership is perfect – I need to write that on my gym bag!


  8. Holistic Wayfarer

    Ha ha – write it! A bunch of guys from my church survived the mudder. CrAzY! The drinks you prepare yourself are for the most part wonderful.


    The How to Eat page explains that one protein and one fat at a time are best for the G.I.

    Hope that helps.


  9. Pingback: Health kick update | A Scientist's Life

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