“So, like, what do you eat?”

When I was trying to decide how I wanted to get healthy, the food involved with each plan I considered was crucial to me.  I know that sounds obvious.  Duh, I want to eat.  Of course I’m going to consider what kind of food I can and can’t have.  As I was doing research on different plans, I began to realize just how emotionally attached to food we are as a culture.  We already know that our celebrations are linked to food–birthday cake, Thanksgiving turkey, Christmas cookies, and the like–but it’s not just that.  I found myself completely disregarding diet plans because of what they would force me to eliminate–and I don’t mean food.  I realized that with my young son, I had dreams of him and our relationship that revolved around food.  Pancakes on Saturday morning.  Homemade ice cream during summer break.  Christmas cookies for Santa.  Homemade brownies after school.

Now, I wasn’t planning on treats like this every day, but I realized how important these dreams were for me when I found myself frozen in my decision because I wanted to be able to have these experiences with my family guilt-free.  No offense to anyone out there, but making Santa gluten-free cookies just doesn’t seem like it would be the same.

This was a big part of why I chose 21 Day Fix for my healthy lifestyle.  I wanted something that I could do long term–not a diet, but a lifestyle.  Something that allows carbs every day and cheat meals every once in a while.  Something that allows you to build in treats without guilt and without feeling like you have to penalize yourself for having that treat.  Something that taught me about nutrition; not just eating less and losing weight, but really focusing on nourishment and wellness.

Recently, I’ve had several people talk to me about 21 Day Fix and nutrition, and I realized that people are under a false impression of how I actually eat.  I’m pretty sure some people think I eat only veggies and completely avoid pizza.  FALSE.  Some people seem to think that I must be starving myself and am hungry all the time.  FALSE.  Okay, I am hungry a lot, but I run a lot, too, people!  And, guess what: I EAT WHEN I’M HUNGRY.  I don’t just suffer in silence in the hopes that the scale will move downward.  I eat something nutritious and drink some water.  And sometimes I go to the drive-thru and get a sweet tea or chicken nuggets.  Or both.  I’m a woman with needs, okay?

Getting healthy isn’t about finding a diet you can follow for a specified time period until you hit your goal.  It’s not about finding a magic pill or secret sauce or special supplement or whatever else is out there in the weight loss world.  It’s about changing your habits.  It’s about working hard.  It’s about eating food that nourishes you, not just filling your belly.  It’s about being active every day. It’s about drinking more water than soda.  It’s about making small changes every day that slowly but surely add up to make you healthier tomorrow than you are today.

I eat food.  I eat real food.  I eat good food.  I eat when I’m hungry.  I just eat for my goals now.  I eat to feel energized.  I eat to keep my depression at bay.  I eat to thrive during my work hours. I eat to keep up with my little man.  I eat to feel good, inside and out.

Are you nourishing your body, or just filling it?  It’s never too late to make a change.  Start today!

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