New mindset. New foods.

fresh foodTo my vegetarian and healthy eating friends… I get it. I understand. Not sure why it took me so long.

As we ate along side each other, I saw your choices. Respected them, even admired your “will power” not to eat the yummy fried shrimp basket or hamburger with french fries that I was having. I couldn’t eat that healthy all the time. Sure a few meals now and then, but the food that was normal to me tasted SO good!

Late last summer, I was shopping for my cousin’s wedding on the beach. My plus size limited my choices (for those not aware, there are about 1/5 the choices in stores for plus size women). Of course to get to the plus size section, I usually had to walk by the hundreds of adorable options in the regular sizes. I found an outfit, but it wasn’t what I really wanted to wear.

Something had to change. Not just because of the clothes, but of ALL the options I left on the table. Running on the beach or in the yard with my daughter, feeling like a million bucks, having the energy all day I needed to be a great mom and wife, not having pain in my feet at the end of the day. And mostly, setting a better example for my daughter. I want her to have a confident and active mom who doesn’t shy away from photos with her. I was leaving that option out too.

I had tried many other ways to lose weight before, but none stuck. A friend shared a program with me that focuses mostly on what I eat. I gave it a shot and haven’t been the same woman since.

In the first 24 Days, I lost 16 pounds! Over the last five months, I’ve lost 38 and still counting. This summer, I will be able to shop in the normal clothes section. But there’s more… I had the energy I was seeking the first few days (thanks, Spark!), I felt amazing with a skip in my step by day 10. My feet stopped hurting in the second week. My daughter and I run in the yard and I even did a cartwheel for the first time since my 20s.

All this because I changed what I eat. There’s been some exercise too, but the focus has been squarely on the fuel I put in my body.

What do I eat? Fruits, veggies, lean meats, whole grains, beans, eggs, nuts, almond milk, almond butter, olives and pickles. A short list to remember and so many varieties of food. It wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be.

Why did I eat all the other foods prior to this focus? Probably because they were convenient, in front of me, tasted good to my taste buds, and it was a habit. These are also very social foods and what’s most common at restaurants and social gatherings.

I’ve made new habits and learned how to make healthy food convenient and on-the-go. New mindset. And it only took a few weeks for this new way of thinking to feel “normal.” It has become a lifestyle choice for me, not a diet. And THAT alone is refreshing.

So to my healthy eating friends… I am in your camp. I get it. There is still lots for me to learn about vegetables and recipes to uncover. Feel free to share with me your favorite healthy recipes. And for those that order a hamburger when I order a salad, I get that too. And some days, I may order the hamburger and fries with you. 🙂