I feel like eating clean and whole foods is like a little secret - you don't realize just how amazing you will feel until you do it.
We all know that eating real food is good and processed food is bad, but for so long, it didn't matter. I knew it but I wasn't ready to admit it.
Well I've stumbled upon this life-changing secret, and I can tell you that a few weeks after I declared my mission to get healthy, I've honestly never felt better.
I think about food differently.
For so long I ate because I was bored, or emotional, stressed, or lonely. I rarely thought about the connection between what I ate and how I felt. Subconsciously I knew that my eating habits were zapping my energy, but I didn't know where to start making changes.
But then a switch flipped, and I started making one healthy choice per meal, and slowly I started to feel (and see) real differences.
Feeling better, feeling lighter, feeling more awake and energized, has been such good motivation to keep it up!
I think about food less often.
I thought about food all the time. At work, sitting in front of the computer, I thought about what I wanted to eat, talked myself in and out of grabbing something from the food court. I ran to Starbucks for a muffin because I didn't plan my lunch well.
I feel like all I thought about was food. What I wanted to eat, what I should eat, convincing myself I deserve a treat, convincing myself to restrain.
Surprisingly, now that I've cut out so much processed food and crap from my diet (and eating to sustain my energy and health, instead of emotional eating), I've now started to crave veggies at lunch, smoothies in the morning, good stuff. I don't feel like I'm denying myself anything.
I eat more food.
It is amazing how much food you eat when you start eating real food.
I used to bring such horrible lunches - I never knew what to pack, and my measly lunch left me hungry (and running to the vending machine or food court) a few hours later.
I've seen a great shift in my eating now that I take a few minutes to plan our my food for the day. I have a smoothie in the morning (or make oatmeal at work if I'm in a rush). Today for lunch I packed a slice of lean turkey and a slice of cheese, celery and peanut butter, and a tomato and cucumber salad for lunch, I had grapes for a mid-morning snack, and I'll have an apple around 3:30. If I spread my lunch out over the course of the day, I am so much more inclined to eat healthy and not crave junk come 4pm.
I feel stronger.
I feel so good. Truly. I feel stronger and lighter. Things fit better. I've been sleeping better (although I still hate waking up). I've had more energy. And, my favorite part, I think I've been happier. I sometimes struggle with finding joy throughout the day, but as I've been treating myself better, I think my perspective and attitude has shifted for the better.
I have a happy stomach.
Ok, seriously, this is so amazing. I have had major tummy troubles in the past - like not being able to leave the house for fear of being too far from a bathroom. My insides were constantly shifting between being so very sick to being so very stopped-up. This may seem gross to some, but to those who struggle with stomach issues, it can be debilitating.
Since shifting my diet, my stomach has been amazing. No more fear of eating away from home. No more sluggish stomach aches.
Last night I did the first day of Couch to 5k. It was amazing. I ran through our neighborhood (so much better than on a treadmill) and loved being outside that I hardly noticed the time passing. I woke up actually looking forward to running today.
Wow, ok, so much good stuff happening. I haven't been this proud of myself in quite a while. I've been thinking a lot lately how I really do control the healthy habits of my family (organizing time exercising, grocery shopping, planning meals), and it's vital that I do the very best I can. This has been such an important realization for me as I walk this journey to a happier, healthier life.