Monday, January 30, 2012

My Health Journey and the 30 Day Challenge

Over the past 15 years, I have been on a trek for two things. 1) to be happy and 2) to be healthy. While number one is very important and that journey is certainly a great story that needs telling, I would like to talk with you about the latter today, to be healthy. First, I needed to ask myself, "What is health and what does it mean to be healthy?". Webter's Dictionary defines health as: 

Certainly, I could agree with that definition and so I set out to make it so for my life. To give you some perspective here, I was 21 and gaining weight at an average of 10 pounds a year. At my worst I reached 185 pounds, way too much for my 5'3" frame. Add to that a relationship that was not good for either of us and being deliberately separated from God; I was NOT of sound body, mind or spirit.

Here's the thing about making change (real, lasting change) you can't try to change only one aspect of your life (i.e.: body) and expect the other areas can remain the unchanged (i.e.: mind and spirit). This is why, no matter how hard I would try (working out everyday and watching what I ate), I was going no-where and getting worse really. The rest of my life was so messed up. It would take me 5 long years to even begin to figure this out. 

Ultimately, it took me opening my life up to God again before any real positive change could happen. This change was painful, very painful and it all seemed to happen so fast, (it's long a story I can share another time). With my mind on the right track and my walk with God growing I was finally able to see success in the body. While I did loose 40 pounds in total, not all of it was done in a healthy way and I had gained a bit back because of that. I owe so much of it to God doing the hard work, me learning to love kick-boxing and the support of good friends (Mike and LaLa) and the man who is now my husband (love you Deryk).
Now, after having 3 children I have managed to keep the weight under some control, resting at about 157 pounds. Still more than is "healthy" for my body. Ideally, our bodies are deigned, by God, to heal what ails us, but because of our poor choices and the junk in our environment, our bodies are simply overwhelmed and we are all getting sick (i.e.: cancer, diabetes, fatty-liver, fibromyalgia, high blood-pressure to name a few that affect my family).

With the mind and spirit in a great place and the knowledge I have picked up on diet end exercise over the last 15 years, I feel more ready than ever to put forth the next phase. We are so blessed to have a great group of friends and health care providers (Provencher Family Chiropractic Centre) who care about whole health (mind, body and spirit) helping us in this journey. 

Since I am usually the one to get the ball rolling on health in our family, I was a bit surprised when my husband brought up doing this challenge. With him on board I know we can all do this. The idea behind this Maximized Living 30 Day Challenge is focusing on using the right foods "...to reduce inflammation, restore cell and membrane function in order to aid in detoxification, regulate hormones and promote fat as the body's primary source of energy.". Please know that I am NOT a person who does the fad diets (never have, never will). That is not what this is. We are retraining how we look at food and what types of food we allow in our bodies. There are two plans; the Core and Advanced. We are doing the Advanced Plan. Here's a basic outline of what we are doing:
1) Fat: Increase intake of healthy fats.
2) Protein: Moderate intake of protein.
3) Carbohydrates: Eliminate grains, sugars and fruit.

Go organic whenever possible. This will be tough for us financially, but we will certainly try. Especially for the thin skin vegetables. Got to say though, when cauliflower is $2 regular and almost $5 organic it's not possible right now for us to go organic (we needed 3 heads). We'll do our best and know that this summer we will grow our own.This originally started in January, but we needed more time to plan out our way to succeed. I have researched recipes, sought out ingredients and made menu plans to help us succeed. For the children, we will be much more lenient, but for the most part they could use to not be so carb addicted anyway. I will be posting recipes and the process we make as we go!