Tag Archive | Clean eating

My Clean Eating Journey ~ Revamped for 2014

First, let’s define “clean eating”.  When I typed “clean eating definition” in my internet search engine, there were over 6.5 million results.  There seem to be as many definitions of this phrase as there are dieting techniques.  My understanding of eating clean is to avoid all processed foods, limit dairy, and avoid all sweets (in food and beverage form), including alcohol.  There are plenty of recipes out there for a clean version of anything you can think of.  I must say that I have been impressed with the ones that I’ve tried.

The summer of 2011, I was enthralled in the art of eating clean and incorporated making smoothies and soups.  It worked very well for me.  I started doing cardio on my lunch break at my office gym, and then I would add some strength training in the evening.  I lost 13 pounds in three weeks, mostly water weight, I’m sure, but it was a great way to kick-start my weight loss plan.  It actually worked too well for me – I got pregnant with my third child, and my way of eating fell by the wayside.  Now here I am, 20 months postpartum, and back to square one.  I am in need of a major overhaul – not just for aesthetic reasons, but for my health and quality of life.

This time around, I am personalizing my efforts.  I need to do what is best for me, not only what works for the masses.  Don’t get me wrong.  The main principles of clean eating are what make it so successful.  Processed foods don’t have any health benefits, and foods from the ground, including fruits and vegetables, do.  It’s pretty simple.  It isn’t so easy to stay on track.  That’s where my personal modifications will come in.  In order for me to remain consistent and keep my metabolism high, I have realized that protein is my best friend.  I don’t eat pork or beef, so I get the majority of my protein intake from poultry, seafood, and beans.  I believe that I have failed in the past because I thought that severely cutting all forms of carbohydrates and replacing most meals with a liquid equivalent would do the trick.  Well, I lost weight that way, but there was truly no way to maintain the weight loss.

I look forward to keeping it off this time.  In the coming weeks and months, there will be many posts related to eating clean, including weekly meal prep.

Nita

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365 Days of Fitness…Starting Now!

Today is my first day of 365 days of fitness.  This personal challenge was inspired by one of my favorite natural hair and fitness bloggers, Shelli of Hairscapades.  The main premise of my challenge is to incorporate a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity into each day, with no exceptions.  This physical activity can be broken up throughout the day.  On work days, I’m sure that this will be the best way to ensure I don’t fail to get it in.

This morning, I danced to two of YouTuber Keaira LaShae’s dance cardio videos – one was a 20-minute hip-hop/twerking video, and the other was a 5-minute 90’s dance video.  To reach my 30-minute goal, I danced to Beyoncé’s Flawless video.  I truly worked up a sweat!  During the first dance cardio video, I realized that I have gotten completely out of shape since relocating back to my hometown, 7 months ago.  I’ve never really needed to use the “modified” version of a workout video…until now.  It was disappointing that my body wasn’t in sync with the excitement going on in my mind.  Growing up, dance was my life!  I danced all throughout school, and now I enjoy dancing along to videos.

As far as my eating habits go, I avoided my morning coffee today, which was hard to do, yet not so hard, after all.  The hard part was only in my mind.  I typically drink one to two cups of coffee each morning, brewed with a teaspoon of cinnamon sprinkled on top, with evaporated milk and approximately three spoons of sugar mixed into each cup (yep, you read it right).  I have sugar substitute packets, but the coffee just doesn’t taste the same that way, in my opinion (obviously).  For breakfast, I drank flavored water and ate some chicken.  For lunch, I ate more chicken and some baby carrots dipped in beans and low-fat ranch dressing.  I ate some fresh pineapple for an afternoon snack.  For dinner, I am going to eat some turkey sausage and mixed veggies.

Overall, the first day is pretty much the worst day for me, since I basically ate without restriction, yesterday.  No withdrawal symptoms, just slightly hungry and “craving” some of the usual suspects.  For me, my cravings consist of whatever is on hand.  I wouldn’t go out of my way to get something bad to eat; I would simply indulge in what is available.  Since I am living with family at the moment, there are salty and sweet treats within an arm’s reach, all the time!!  This new eating plan of mine will require some major willpower, if I am going to stay on track.

With God’s assistance, anything and everything is possible.

Watch me work!!

Nita