Monday, 15 July 2013

Choosing the right course...

In 54 years of living, I have never been away on my own.
But when you decide your life has more value than you realised, you do strange things.
You may even have adventures.
Last week, on a spur of the moment impulse, I left husband and daughter behind and had my very first solo-away-adventure. 
And I loved it.
I traveled north to Mission Beach, amidst wild winds and unseasonal rain and storms.
In a secluded cabin...

...with rainforest behind me and the beach in front of me...

...I prayed, read, stitched, cooked, and reflected on the sum of my life.
The wisest thing I did was leave behind the laptop and all 'work' distractions. This was time to slow right down in order to hear God and my heart.

I enjoyed a lovely rich block of dark chocolate during my stay, and did not beat myself up about it because a life separated from occasional treats is not really a life is it?
But, aware that both body and mind are nourished when we take time to think about what we eat and drink, the rest of the time I made healthy and tasty choices with what was available locally...

The bringing together of two things - nourishing foods and uninterrupted rest - gave me what I've badly needed for the last year. It's incredible how a few days like this can recharge and refresh the emotions, whilst also clearing negative thoughts and adjusting out-of-sync priorities. 
I came back changed for the better, yet still on a journey.

One thing about my daily diet that seemed clearer was the importance of taste.
Natural taste.
You see I love wholefoods, raw foods, fermented foods, sour doughs, nuts, seeds and fresh from the farmer/garden produce - but as good as that sounds (and tastes!) it has a downside.

To diet one needs to restrict calories. This can lead to a growling, empty tummy. In order to fill the empty tummy one gets from those lower calories, one needs to the lower the calorie content of the food eaten in order to eat more so that tummy can be filled to satisfaction. At least that's how it works for me.
BUT...I don't want to eat diet yoghurt. I don't want to eat fake sugar (and I do use stevia but it's not as nice as I'd like it to be), and I don't want to cut out wholegrain sour dough breads, nuts, olive oil or seeds.

I used to tell myself, "eat the low-cal stuff until you've lost the weight, and then maintain it with healthy foods".
But when I was away I knew I couldn't do that on any level.

When I eat wholefoods I fill up for longer, and I am happily satisfied in taste and appetite. I *feel* healthy, and my body functions better.

My nails are stronger, my hair thickens and gleams, I get less migraines, sleep more soundly, have no digestive issues, and my knee and ankle joints don't ache.
But I don't lose any weight. 

When I eat 'diet' foods I get way more migraines, sleep fitfully, lose handfuls of hair, and my nails 'peel' off in layers.

Answer for me: exercise more, eat wholefoods for three meals a day, don't snack.

Sounds simple, but isn't (I love snacks). However, the pay off is sooooooo worth it. Healthy inners, strong outers, and less migraines.

So back on the treadmill this morning (haven't been on in 13 days) and a more consistent approach to cleaning the house a bit deeper each day (good for the body, the soul, and weight loss). Also adding in some very basic stretches from a beginner yoga app on my iPad.
Wholefoods and exercise, plus a good dose of fresh air and time out with my husband...perfect.

Might even look at growing some more things in pots outside. Having health at your back door is wonderful. This morning's crop of tomatoes sort of inspires that thinking...

How are you going? What things trip you up in your desire to live and eat healthy and lose excess weight?


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