Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Living a Healthy Lifestyle

I recently wrote a post for 2000 Dollar Wedding about how I want to get back into pre-baby shape simply by living a healthy lifestyle (instead of doing crazy things like 6am boot camp). I'm eager to fit back into my clothes. I thought I could wear some of my maternity clothes in the meantime, but they are designed to accentuate your belly! Not a good idea when you aren't actually pregnant...

And swimsuit season is upon us. Enough said.

Plus, I'm going to a wedding this summer where I will get to reconnect with people I haven't seen in years. I would like to look my healthy best.

But so far, my attempts to live a healthy lifestyle are not going well. I think part of the problem is that I didn't eat refined sugar during my pregnancy. I resisted temptation after temptation (from cookies to cupcakes to brownies to hot chocolate). And now I'm like that kid whose parents never let him watch TV, so when he sleeps over at a friend's house he's totally obsessed with gazing at the forbidden object.

In other words, I now eat cupcakes and ice-cream--literally one after another.

So I really need to put a stop to it. And it's not just about the physical appearance of my body (despite all those reasons above). It's also about living my healthiest life and feeling my best.

I need to revisit the intentions I set for myself:
  1. I am the kind of person who avoids drinking unnecessary calories. I save caloric drinks for special occasions and instead drink water on a daily basis (and lots of it!).
  2. I avoid processed foods and artificial sweeteners and instead opt for whole foods.
  3. I eat three smaller meals throughout the day and two healthy snacks. When I eat my snacks, I prepare a small serving--I don't eat something straight out of the bag.
  4. I avoid tempting (but disgusting) foods that pop up at work all the time (e.g., grocery store birthday cake, chips, candy, etc.).
  5. I routinely avoid fried foods and instead opt for salads or fruit as my sides when we go out to eat. I limit my intake of unhealthy restaurant food, such as chips and bread before the meal.
  6. I try to eat dessert only once or twice a week, and when I eat it, I eat a very small portion, intentionally savoring each bite.
  7. I take my son and dog for an hour-long walk at least five times a week.
  8. I go to yoga once a week.

I think my main problem has been the desserts. Oh, the desserts! I am seriously addicted to eating Amy's ice-cream and then heading over to Crave for a cupcake. Oh vey!

Since I'm breast feeding, I need to eat extra calories, but not that many extra calories!

Having a partner who loves to eat out doesn't help the situation. I need to ask Matt to help me follow through with my intentions. I also think it will help if I have a plan for my snacks. It's not good when I just head to the fridge looking for something to eat. Additionally, I should put stickers on my calendar to track my walking. It can be so easy to skip a day because it's too hot or I'm too tired. If I track my walking more closely, I'll have a better sense of how often I'm actually doing it.

Okay, I am re-inspired! It's a lifestyle, not a diet. I can do this...

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GG said...

I get wicked, awful chocolate cravings before my period starts (I am SUCH a cliche), so I like to blend together a punnet of blueberries, a banana, around 1/4 cup of water and 2 tsp of beautifully rich Dutch cocoa powder. I get a full chocolate hit without any of the sugar. Highly recommended!

Kelsey said...

Wish we could meet to go walking more often! I also use the Lose it! app on my iPhone to track my diet it helps me to resist temptation when I know I have to record it.

Lucy said...

After both my pregnancies I had "splurge" days, usually twice a week (on Wednesdays and Sundays). When I would feel cravings the rest of the week, I'd just write the food items down and wait for eating day. When it came, I'd usually go out for ice-cream or order pizza but not eat everything off my list, it would have made me sick :)

I know we live in a country plagued with obesity, overconsumption and temptation for things and food we don't need. But I also think you really need to be kind with yourself (you just grew a human being without eating any refined sugar, that in itself is heroic). Resisting temptation is tiring on the body and the mind, and giving in once in a while can help relieve stress levels. Like having a long herbal bath or paying for a massage.

If you crave a cupcake, I would suggest by all means to have it. But keep it down to once or twice a week and eat very healthy the rest of the time. Matt can help you with this by planning whole, low-fat meals for the week and eating out only on "splurge days".
I feel like planning meals weekly helps a lot, that way all we have in the fridge is for the meals and I don't get tempted to snack all the time.

Good luck to you!

Jennie said...

I have zero faith in my ability to maintain healthy eating habits once this baby comes! I know I should be thinking positively, but I will definitely require major support to make sure I keep eating the salads and fruits I have made a habit of eating during the pregnancy. The hard part is that my mom is coming to 'help out' and has already made plans to do lots of baking. I love her, and her baking (!), but hopefully she'll be equally as excited to make salads and smoothies!

I'm also very jealous that you have days where it's 'too hot' to go for a walk! We keep waiting for the warm weather to hit us too!

PS Your family looks fantastic in the photo! I'm so glad you guys are health, happy and finding time to have outings together! :)

Anaïs said...

Hi Sarah, I actually eat dessert at every meals but they are: yogurt, home-made "compote" (I cook apples + pears/banana/mango/whatever other fruits I have to get ride off + spices: cinammon/star anise/ clove/pepper...), nuts, fruit salad, etc.

I was brought up with a three-course meal twice a day (+breakfast and healthy snacks), wether at school or at home (In french we call it "entrée, plat, dessert" but then usually you add cheese between the main course an dthe dessert).

We had only 2 less-healthy desserts a week: on saturday night (something bought) and on sunday at lunch (something home-made by us kids, usually a chocolate cake or lemon pie or any stuff more sugary than usual)

And so, I want to provide the same in my home to my future kid(s). Dessert can be healthy and delicious! Don't miss them so you won't be obsessed anymore :)

kacey said...

Who could blame you- you live in the land of tex-mex and amy's ice cream! Be gentle on yourself, have fun with Matt and the baby, and thank little Henry everyday for his help consuming those extra calories :)

Anastasia said...

You're definitely right about it being a lifestyle and it seems like you are taking the right direction! If you stick to whole foods, drink tons of water and continue with your walks and yoga you will see a difference.

Hang in there! You'll do awesome.

Mica said...

I don't know what Amy's or Crave is, but I bet I would have an equally hard time with them nearby.

If it's any help at all, when I first saw your healthy living intentions for yourself, I made sure to remember them. Now, I'm trying to use them when I'm having a tough moment because I know that that's what you're doing!

Jami said...

You CAN do it!

Cécy said...

I was going to say something along the lines of Anaïs, dessert is fine it depends what makes your dessert.
Some yogurt with fresh fruits in it, compote, a square of dark chocolate. Those add a nice little sweet touch to the end of the meal without being a splurge.
Last night I was craving something sweet. I tossed fresh straweberries with a little balsamic vinegar and some honey. It was so satisfiying and cut off my need for more food I seemed to have.

Catfish said...

I love your intentions - I haven't written mine down but have definitely been thinking "I am the kind of person who..." to motivate myself.

Liquid calories are my biggest temptation. I don't really like water and diet drinks are a chemical wasteland. I love coffee drinks, martinis, lemonade (oh, sweet, sweet lemonade). My friend got me a pitcher so that you can infuse water or iced tea with fresh fruit and that makes a nice change to plain water. Plus I can add some iced tea to lemonade and cut the calories.

nc said...

I've had a major post-partum sweet tooth - I blame breastfeeding. Now that I've eaten up all the Easter candy I'm trying to be good by limiting myself to trail mix, fruit, granola bars and small bits of dark chocolate. Ice cream is so very hard to resist, though...

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