January 26, 2016

Day 26: Free From the Wagon

old covered wagon

Over the course of this journey to better health one piece of advice that I have learned is that the focus of our efforts shouldn't be on what we are putting into our stomachs.  The focus should be on what we are feeding our brain. Having a healthy attitude about the changes you are making and why, will make all the difference.

I came across a wonderful quote from Holly on the I Quit Sugar Team website:

 “Being healthy isn’t all or nothing. Ditch the wagon altogether and remember that health is a journey...I choose not to get into the “wagon” in the first place. For me, “the wagon” represents a set of strict rules used to control our behaviors and relationship towards food. When you surround yourself with restriction and give food morality, you’re giving food unnecessary power which ends up resulting in guilt and pain for you. Being free of the “wagon” means understanding that being healthy isn’t an all or nothing approach. It’s a journey about understanding what is right for your body and giving it the things it needs to be happy, healthy and strong.”


Its not about whether or not you are on or off the wagon. The point is that you summoned the courage to start on a journey. What is your vision for your health? 


Picture yourself in your kitchen, the smell of your favorite spices wafting from the pan on the stove.  The people you love are surrounding you, each helping in some way: chopping, peeling and adding ingredients to your freshly cooked meal.  No guilt because you are eating exactly what you want to be eating. There is laughter, talking, a little bantering. You are happy.  You feel pleased that you are serving up not just a nutritious meal, but a memory.  And food is what has brought you together.   

supermarket isle
Imagine walking the isles of the grocery store with purpose, knowing that you are in control of what goes into your cart. You are excited to buy the ingredients on your list because you know what you will be preparing for the week. Will you cook every single night? Not likely, but you are working towards something even bigger than your daily menu. You are working towards better health for you and your family. 

This is the vision I have for myself.  I am not on a wagon. I am on the road to better health. I am walking and occasionally running this journey! I am not a passive rider on anyone's wagon. I am not perfect. And that is ok. There are nights when I serve something from the freezer and that’s just fine because I add a few fresh cut vegetables on the side and we all enjoy together. 

I cannot stress enough how important it is to understand for yourself that better health is a lifelong journey.  It is one step at a time.  It is two steps forward and one step back.  You are good enough to have a healthy body. Better health is not a quick-fix weight-loss program.  I believe that one of the most rewarding feelings is to be able to actually hear and understand your own body - what it needs, likes, and does not want. 


I love the part at the end of Holly’s quote, that you give your body what it needs to be happy, healthy and strong.  Sometimes my body really wants a treat to be happy. And that’s ok. I’m just going to redefine “treat” and find a better way to give a special food reward to my body than regular grocery store junk food. I’m going to give my body what it needs to be healthy, which I know starts with a good foundation of fresh vegetables and fruits.  I’m going to keep my body strong by giving myself adequate rest and exercise as often as I can. 

I am not into fad diets or weight-loss crazes at all.  However, I do believe that at certain times for certain reasons our bodies need a chance to reset. To re-calibrate and find a clean slate once again in order to hear what our bodies are really telling us. For me, doing the I Quit Sugar program for 8 weeks was exactly what I needed to do.  I would love for you to come back tomorrow and read more in depth about the details of that journey and how I believe I have now given myself a clean slate and what I am going to do with it going forward.  I will answer the burning question of whether or not I will ever taste a (insert favorite-can’t-live-without-dessert here) chocolate chip cookie ever again in my life. 

Just remember, you got this. You are worth it and you can do it! Cheers!!

xo-Heather

 #MoreFoodLessCrap @MorFoodLessCrap 
#NewYear #Food #Health #IQuitSugar

2 comments:

  1. Haha, the wagon is evil. Last time I "fell off the wagon," it was a broken down, flat-tired thing, that SHOVED me off the side, and I landed in the mud, rolled around...and LIKED it. I have now gotten up out of the puddle, wiped the toffee crumbs off my face after Christmas, taken a long shower and climbed back on the...but you're right! No more wagon.

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    1. Oh, Amy... Haven't we all wallowed in the mire for a time messy with chocolate and guilt! I love this analogy! So funny because we've all been there. Most of the time we believe that its all or nothing with nutrition. Once we break the addictions, making good choices isn't such roller coaster obsession. We enjoy a treat made with love once in a while, then we enjoy our delicious nutritious foods the rest of the time. No more mud puddles!

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