Month: September 2014

Relearning How to Eat Healthy

Over the past year I have been relearning how to eat. After years of dieting and restrictive eating, I have committed to learn to eat with a healthy mindset, and develop a healthy relationship towards food.

This has involved unlearning all of the rules regarding food that I have picked up through various diets and “healthy eating” restrictions. I have been learning to eat food non-judgementally, without guilt and shame. I am working at getting rid of the voice inside my head that tells me cookies are bad, and kale is good. That eating after 9:00 pm will make me fat, or eating 5 meals a day will make me skinny and happy.

I had been ignoring my body for so long and trying to control what I ate, and it has been really hard to let all of that go. It is crazy how many mindsets we have about different types of food, and how we should eat, without even realizing it. These ideas about food weren’t making me healthy, but unhappy, and obsessive. God has given my body the ability to tell me when I am hungry, and when I am full. I am attempting to eat by these signals.

what we eat

It isn’t what we eat that makes us healthy, but how, and why we eat it.

About five years ago, I got really committed to working out and eating a “healthy” clean diet.  I ate 5 regimented meals a day at set times. I carefully planned and prepared all of my food ahead of time. I wouldn’t let my husband cook anything for me. I needed to control all of the ingredients that went into what I made. I was so obsessed about food. I was stressed in social situations because I was worried that I would have to explain why I wasn’t eating certain things, like birthday cake. I also got anxious if I wasn’t able to eat at designated times.

I remember standing in a circle in a team meeting at work and scarfing down greek yogurt mixed with protein powder while my co-workers watched. I couldn’t have eaten it before the meeting because it wouldn’t have been three hours since the last time I ate. I was so embarrassed, but I felt like I just had to eat at that exact moment, or my whole diet would be ruined. I was so controlled by food! It was all I thought about, and it dictated my actions and the way that I lived me life.

During this time I lost a lot of weight, but I was so far from healthy. My hormones weren’t functioning properly, and I stopped getting my period. On the outside I looked like the picture of perfect health, on the inside I was so unhealthy, and becoming quite unhappy. Since this time in my life, I have had to gain weight so my body would function normally again. I had to quit working out for awhile. Now I am at a healthy weight and am able to exercise. I am trying to figure out what my personal healthy looks like.

I am not eating how I want to yet. I still have a lot of food rules and mindsets that need healing. I have come a long way in the past year, but I still struggle daily with listening to my body’s hunger cues. Sometimes I eat something because I think it would be “good” for me, not because it is something that I want. Other times I eat a lot of a food that I have restricted in the past, like cookies or chocolate, not because I want it, but because it is difficult to stop and realize that I can eat this food whenever I want to. I am realizing I don’t have to go crazy all at once.

birthday sushi

I have noticed a big change since I have stopped dieting and eating restrictively. I no longer feel guilt, or shame for overeating, or eating foods that I wouldn’t have allowed myself in the past. I can recognize my mistakes as areas for improvement, and get on with my life. This has been huge! In the past if I ate something “bad”, this would have triggered a binge, making me feel awful, and leading to more restrictive eating than I was already doing.

Below are a few steps that I have taken in order to heal my relationship with food and have healthier mindsets and eating habits

How I am learning to eat healthy

  • Letting go of the “food” rules that have dictated what I ate in the past
  • Listening to my body for cues about when to eat, what, and how much
  • Enjoying what I am eating, and not thinking about whether it is “bad” or “good”
  • Learning to love my body where it is at, and understanding that looking a certain way won’t make me happier or improve my life
  • Stopping comparing myself to others, and placing expectations on myself
  • Focusing on setting a good example for my daughter and demonstrating how to have a healthy relationship with food to her

How about you? What are some tips that help you eat more healthfully? (Remember I’m not talking about what you eat, but how and why you eat!)

A Family Weekend

Hope you all had a good weekend!

My weekend flew by as usual, but it was mostly a good one.

On Friday I made Josh’s favourite cookies. They were oatmeal chocolate chip, with a few secret ingredients. I will have to post the recipe sometime – it’s a good one! Lochlyn and I drove into Red Deer and visited Josh at work with our special delivery.

oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

Friday night was a tough one for us. Josh had to work really late, and Lochlyn and I had the evening to ourselves. Unfortunately, she decided that she wanted to stay up and party rather than sleep. It took her forever to go down! Normally I feed her to sleep at night and she falls asleep right away, but I was up with her until after midnight. Crazy baby. Josh didn’t get home from work until 1 am. We NEVER stay up past 11, (we are getting old! ha!) so it was a tired day on Saturday.

Saturday morning we went to get our hair cut. The rest of the day we hung out at home, had an easy dinner, and put Lochlyn to bed. Then, something amazing happened on Saturday night. Lochlyn fell asleep all by herself in her crib! Usually I have to feed her to sleep, but last night she woke up. We let her cry for a bit and she fell asleep by herself. This never happens! Lochlyn had some happy parents!

josh and lochlyn on couch

On Sunday my parents came up to visit for the day from Calgary. They took me out for a late birthday lunch. I got to choose the restaurant, so of course I chose sushi. It was so good! We went to a newer restaurant in town called Tokio Sushi. It is a big deal for us to have a sushi place, we used to have to drive to Red Deer (about 20 minutes away).

birthday lunch sushi unnamed-2

(It was hard to take good pictures in the restaurant – it was dark in there!)

parents playing with lochlyn

We hung out with my parents for a bit after lunch before they had to leave to drive home.

After dinner, Josh, Lochlyn, and I went to a friends’ house for a quick visit before Lochlyn had to go to bed. We usually go to our friends’ place on Sunday evenings – it’s kind of a thing :) They are really awesome, and they gave us their old Jolly Jumper! Lochlyn was in heaven. I have a feeling she will be spending a lot of time in it from now on.

jolly jumper lochlyn with haven

I have decided to start putting Lochlyn to bed awake and trying to teach her to fall asleep on her own. I thought this would be impossible, but last night I tried, and she fell asleep by herself again! I am hoping that soon we might be able to get a baby sitter for the evening and come home to a sleeping baby.

This week we don’t have anything too exciting planned. Sometimes not having plans is my favourite. It gives me the chance to get back into routine and get the house in order.

 What was the best part about your weekend?

Do you prefer to have a ton of plans, or an open agenda?

Nap Time Drama

Baby Lochlyn has always been an awesome sleeper at night. We have had our fair share of tough weeks (ugh, teething!) but overall she typically sleeps 11 hours without waking up. Nap time, however; is another story. Lochlyn is almost 7 months old, and she never naps for more than half an hour at a time. She usually has 2-3 naps a day. She never falls asleep by herself… ever!

When Lochlyn was a newborn, we had to work so hard to get her to fall asleep. The only thing that would make her happy when she was tired was running the stairs while holding her. I was a tired mama, but I guess I got my workouts in for the day! Running the stairs helped her calm down enough to fall asleep. Josh bought me a wrap style carrier and I would put her in there and run up and down the stairs during nap time. Putting her down in her crib once she fell asleep wasn’t an option, unless you were okay with her waking up and you having to run the stairs all over again. I definitely wasn’t.

0814newfamily

After quite a few weeks of stairs, a friend tipped us off on trying to use an exercise ball to put her to sleep. Lochlyn loved the motion of bouncing on an exercise ball. This was a win for me, it was so much easier. I would bounce her on the ball in the baby carrier in a dark room. Once she fell asleep I would watch Netflix while I held her. I watched A LOT of How I Met Your Mother.

newborn wrap

As much as I loved holding and cuddling my baby, it got old for every single nap. Nothing ever got done, and I never got a break. Babies sleep a lot! I soon discovered that I could carry Lochlyn’s car seat around with her in it, and she would fall asleep. This is where we are at right now. For every single nap, I buckle Lochlyn into the car seat and carry it around for about 15 minutes until she falls asleep. Those car seats are heavy! I usually turn on the blender, or the vacuum, as this helps her fall asleep faster. Once she is asleep, I can put the car seat down, and about 70% of the time she will sleep for half an hour without waking up. The other 30% of the time she wakes up and I have to start the whole process again.

unnamed-5

Gah! I am getting tired and I would love advice. I have tried putting Lochlyn down awake since she was a newborn, but rather than falling asleep she cries harder and harder until she is so worked up that there is no way she is having a nap. I have tried putting her down before she is tired, when she first starts getting tired, and when she is really tired. I have tried giving her a soother (she doesn’t like it). I have also tried staying with her in the room while she cries, hoping it will soothe her into going down, but it seems to make her more upset. I feel like I have tried everything … white noise, vibrations, a very dark room, swaddling, you name it!

unnamed-6 unnamed-7

Lochlyn is so good-natured. She is the calmest, and happiest baby ever until she gets tired. She is just so stubborn (wonder where she gets that from – me!). She has never slept in the car, or her baby swing. Rocking her to sleep or feeding her to sleep doesn’t work for naps either (I feed her to sleep at night).

Josh and Lochlyn

I am thankful for all the time Lochlyn and I have spent together while I put her to sleep as a newborn, but I think that she may be getting old enough to learn to fall asleep on her own. If you actually made it to the end of my rant I would love some advice!

Moms, how did you teach your baby to fall asleep on their own?

Any advice on staying sane while trying to teach your baby to sleep?

“Stop Feeling Crazy Around Food”

So I have an awesome link to share with you guys today, but before I do, here’s a little recap of my birthday yesterday…

unnamed-1

I really enjoyed my day with Lochlyn, even if it wasn’t too out of the ordinary. We started the day off by heading to our mom and baby group. It was the first one I have made it to since it resumed in the fall. It is always great hanging out with other moms and talking everything babies! In the afternoon I got some cleaning done around the house and headed to the gym. Pretty typical.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, we decided to order in for dinner. I really didn’t want to cook and to be honest I also didn’t feel like getting ready to go out anywhere. Sometimes ordering in and eating dinner in your p.j.’s is the best. My husband picked up Vietnamese noodle bowls for dinner and pumpkin pie blizzards from Dairy Queen for dessert. In case you were wondering, the pumpkin pie blizzards were pretty delicious! I forgot to snap a picture of mine! Even though it wasn’t too out of the ordinary, I had a great birthday!

unnamed-3

“Stop Feeling Crazy Around Food”

And … that’s enough about me. Click above for the link that I promised you!

This link comes from Isabel Foxen Duke. She has a video series that you have to check out. Two of the videos are available now and the third one will be posted tomorrow. I can’t wait! The link takes you to a promotional trailer video which is also great. You can sign up to receive the videos via e-mail. I hate giving my e-mail out just as much as the rest of you, but it is worth it, I promise you.

The first video, “Why Self Control is Not the Answer”, talks about the cycle of restricting and bingeing. Isabel Foxen Duke stresses the importance of fixing our mindsets to end this cycle rather than going on another diet. I completely agree with what she discusses. I know that every time I have gone on a “diet” and restrict what I allow myself to eat, I end up with less control in the long run. This explains why dieters almost always gain back the weight that they lose eventually and end up even crazier around food!

In the second video, “Why People Eat”, Isabel describes binge eating as “a reaction to perceived or real deprivation”. Often we deprive ourselves of certain foods, thinking it is “unhealthy” or will make us gain weight. When we do allow ourselves to have these foods, we don’t fully enjoy them because of our beliefs surrounding them, and we still deprive ourselves of the experience of eating them. This challenged me. I always thought of binge eating as uncontrollable eating, to the point that you are painfully full, and couldn’t possibly eat another bite. I think there must be different kinds of binge eating because I don’t binge the way that I used to, but Isabel’s definition makes me realize that I still sometimes binge eat, by eating foods and feeling guilt for eating them afterwards. This often leads to overeating these “shameful foods”. Don’t restrict your food people!

Sweaty selfie after the gym yesterday!

(sweaty selfie after the gym yesterday)

I am excited to hear Isabel’s last video in the series, but I feel like I have so many questions for her regarding food and our relationship to it. She has a conference call this Saturday that I won’t be able to participate in, but I encourage you guys to listen if this is something that interests you, and fill me in!

Also, please note that this post isn’t endorsed by Isabel Foxen Duke, I just loved the video series and believe watching it could benefit you. You can also check out her blog at IsabelFoxenDuke.com.

Did you check out the video series? If so what did you think? 

Do you prefer low key birthdays, or partying it up?

So, It’s My Birthday!

Happy birthday to me! I turn 28 today, which sounds a lot older than I feel, but I guess birthdays always feel that way. So far I have nothing exciting planned for the day. I need to make a trip to the library because my books will be overdue. I plan on making my usual visit to the gym. I may or may not attend the mom and baby group that I typically go to on Tuesdays. The only thing special that I have planned is that I don’t want to cook dinner! I think it will probably be a take-out kinda night.

unnamed

In celebration of my special day, I thought I would write my very first ever blog post. I have been thinking about what I want my first post to be about for awhile. I wanted it to be epic and amazing. Something that I might reference back to. Something to get me started on the right foot. I wanted it to be something that would represent the direction that I want my blog to take. I have so many ideas that I want to share, but I don’t know where to start. I guess I will start with a basic post to introduce the blog to you! (Not very epic).

For anyone reading, first off I want to say welcome to HonestlyAngela! You can learn more about me here, and about this blog here

Some topics that you will see on this blog are:

  • My family life and motherhood
  • Spirituality discussions
  • Work-outs and other fitness topics
  • Meal ideas, recipe reviews, and maybe even some recipe creations
  • Eating issues and my journey with intuitive eating
  • Positive body image
  • How I overcame Hypothalamic Amenorrhea

Some things that you won’t see on this blog are:

  • Judgemental statements about others
  • Posts that encourage dieting or any type of food restriction

I believe that my honesty is what will make this blog different. I don’t want to portray myself as an expert, or as someone who has their life together in any of these areas. I plan to discuss these areas because this is where I want to grow personally.

Thank you for taking the time to check HonestlyAngela out! Hope you stop in again soon!

Which of the above topics most interests you?

How did you find out about this blog?