This is part cautionary tale, part inspirational story about changing the dialogue surrounding food, from reward to fuel.
I’ve been a pretty healthy woman for most of my adult life. Starting around 26, I was following a pescatarian lifestyle, practicing ashtanga yoga five times a week, and generally living my best life (although we didn’t call it that, back then). I prided myself on going from frozen burritos for dinner every night, to vegetable-centric, home cooked meals. I began working at a health food store that I shared many common causes with, went dairy-free and gluten-free to heal my gut, and cleared out the chemicals from my toiletry cabinet.
My skin glowed. My body was lean. I felt fantastic.
Years passed, and eventually I became pregnant. My cravings included seaweed salad and lemons. I indulged with an occasional (never more than once a week!) gluten-free cupcake or cookie. I gained 30lbs, and managed to lose all of it, while getting back into my size 4 jeans, in 18 months though, at the time, I was quite angry at myself for taking that long.
Within a few months of being in peak shape, feeling great, reclaiming my body and moving forward on my then-career path, I became pregnant. Unexpectedly.
This time was different. I was following a paleo lifestyle, but within weeks of becoming pregnant, I was ready to throw up at the mere thought of any type of meat or vegetable. I survived on crackers and cream cheese alone, for the first trimester. If you’ve read anything else I’ve written, chances are, you know the rest of the story: perinatal depression and anxiety, challenging times, blah blah. I ate my emotions instead of fuelling them, and got so busy doing a mid-career pivot, I lost Healthy Glynis.
Here’s the part of the puzzle that I’ve been struggling with: over the past 6 years, I almost always had someone feeding off me, in some way. Either I was pregnant or breastfeeding, with the exception of 3 months (when I got pregnant again) for five straight years, and I forgot how to eat for just one. How to fuel my body, instead of stuffing it with all the things.
When I ended up in the ER with a pinched nerve a year ago, faced with the decision of going opioids to quell the excruciating pain, or continuing with breastfeeding my 18-month-old son, I chose the meds. I don’t regret that, but facing health challenges while learning to take care of my body as a solo endeavour was something I just wasn’t equipped for, at the time.
The fact is, most of us have found ourselves in the position of realizing we haven’t been treating our bodies with the respect they deserve. Most of the time, it’s over the course of a holiday–maybe around Christmas, maybe during a particularly crazy summer–but sometimes? Sometimes that lack of respect takes on a life of its own. And enough time passes that you start to believe that you should keep disrespecting yourself, because it’s easier than finding your way back to health and self-respect.
It finally hit me, though, at the end of 2016. I fit into virtually nothing I owned. I felt disgusting, even though I was working out regularly at a gym. I was finding it harder to run. But eating and drinking felt so good. Then, I weighed myself, and I weighed more than when I was 9 months pregnant.
It was time for a reset.
I’ve been on a mission over the past 6+ weeks to find my way back to a healthy, balanced way of living. I did it before, right? It was my way of life, and motherhood eclipsed it temporarily. Since the start of 2017, though, it has become my top priority. Despite joining a gym and loving the workouts I do there, I finally realized that nutrition needed to be a larger part of the equation than I was making it at the time.
Thank god for Bulletproof360.
I’ve written about Bulletproof coffee before, because I love it. Well, for the first 3 months of 2017, I get to be a brand ambassador for them, trying out all sorts of products they’ve created that support a healthy lifestyle. Pretty convenient, right? The timing couldn’t have been better. Part of the challenge I’ve been facing is a higher than normal amount of hunger, due to the workouts I’ve been doing. My problem before was that I would go straight to sugary carbs to fill the void, mostly for the convenience factor. A muffin here, a few cookies there–none of it was nourishing me, or sustaining me.
The first step was getting back to treating food as fuel for my body. Food as fuel can still be delicious! But it needs to serve its intended function, right? So, my husband and I hopped on a 6 week meal plan with a holistic nutritionist, where all of the ingredients, all of the meals and snacks, everything was laid out for me, so that I could buy what was needed to make what was on my list. Thankfully, I was able to incorporate my favourite Bulletproof products into the plan.
Upgraded coffee beans, grass-fed ghee and Brain Octane. These three beautiful ingredients, when combined in a blender, create the creamiest, frothiest latte you’ve ever had, and it will sustain you for hours, without the awful caffeine crash later.
A green smoothie with a high quality protein powder is something I’ve come to love, now that my kids demand so much attention in the mornings. I remember, back when I was following the paleo lifestyle, doing a big cook up every morning, with eggs, sausage and vegetables. WHO HAS TIME FOR THAT? Not this mama. So smoothies that aren’t sugar bombs are key, for me. Have you looked at the ingredient list of any of the protein powders you can buy at the store? Fillers, sweeteners, all sorts of crap. You know what’s in Bulletproof’s collagen protein powder? Collagen from grass-fed cows. That’s it. No taste, so you can actually enjoy the taste of whatever you’re putting in your smoothie.
All of this has resulted in a 6-week journey back into my jeans. Back into clothes I was worried would never fit again. And using fats and proteins to sustain and fuel my body, like those Bulletproof offers, has helped me kick my sugar cravings to the curb. The 6 weeks are over, but I’m not stopping now, because this isn’t my diet. It’s my lifestyle
This post is brought to you by 3C Consulting. All opinions are my own, however!