I began my start of healthy eating and living on Jan. 4. I’ve got to tell you, it was a lot easier than I thought it would be, but challenges certainly came up.
For healthy eating, I would eat breakfast in the morning. Each day was different, between oatmeal and almond milk, eggs or Bagel Thins. Then I would eat a midmorning snack, which was usually fruit, a high protein lunch that I prepped on Sunday, a snack in the afternoon, protein shake and a high protein dinner.
It was a lot of eating, but I needed to focus on getting my nutrients in and making sure my body could recover (protein) after working out. This mentality was hard for me to grasp at first, because up until this point I was counting calories.
Surprisingly, I still did pretty impressively in terms of calories, though this isn’t what I was focused on. I even felt full all week, which was also due to the protein, which helped me from snacking.
The challenges I had with healthy eating were few, but they became more prominent during the week. I discovered after three days of stomach cramping and pain that the protein shake I was taking had milk in it. Pair that with the side effects of the medicine I was taking, and I was not feeling good.
The protein shake I was taking from Max Muscle was delicious and it did what it was intended to do, but the milk didn’t set well in my stomach because I’m lactose intolerant. The store happily made an exchange and the new one I’m taking now is a delicious, solid milk-free shake.
I only caved in my healthy eating once, and it was the first day when I wasn’t as full as the days that followed. I happened to pass a chocolate aisle and get something.
Then came the workout. I recently joined Planet Fitness, where they emphasize no “gymitation” and making their gym a judgement-free zone. I used to be comfortable in a gym when I trained for soccer, but I was surprised at the relief I found with this attitude.
I started the week with meeting with their house trainer, who I happened to know. I was embarrassed by this at first, because I had to admit to her, a peer, all my goals, and I for one am still a little uncomfortable doing that. But together we came up with a lifting plan, something I don’t usually do, and I began that.
What was hard about the lifting was getting used to the machines. As a soccer player I always focused on legs and cardio — they had upper body training but now is a good time to admit to skipping those — so when my chest and arms day came, I was so confused! But the workers there were happy to help and I felt the burn! I then did a 20 minute cardio routine, something I plan to extend, and I felt good.
Overall, the week was hectic. Between work and preparing to get back to school, on top of not feeling good, there were days I didn’t want to go. But I did, and that little accomplishment has started to change my attitude about a healthy lifestyle.
With the support of my family and friends this week, I was able to lose about 10 pounds. I’m extremely proud of myself for this, but I know I have a long way to go. From my research in losing weight, I also know this won’t be the case every week — my body will only lose so many pounds a week. But I think I’m prepared for the long haul I have ahead of me.