This week I’m sharing another story from a member of our A-Team. Becka is an incredibly talented editor in television, who I try and work with as often as possible. Her story is unique to most of us struggling with weight in that she is a runner, and now, is pregnant with her second child. Find out why Becka decided to make the change to The Luminous way of eating and how she’s doing with her pregnancy. Here is her story:
I decided to join Sara’s A team as part of my New Years resolution in 2016 to be healthier. While being 20lbs heavier than I wanted to be was certainly a motivation, the big focus was I was tired of feeling ‘not well’ any more. It wasn’t that I felt sick but I never felt 100% most of the time. I was always exhausted, my stomach hurt most of the time, I was constantly bloated and uncomfortable.
Following the beginning of Sara’s journey had been incredibly inspiring as I work in the same stressful environment and understood many of her struggles. I am a working mom and running is my stress release, so exercise has never been an issue, but eating nutritious food gets easily lost in the daily shuffle. So starting a new year with a purpose seemed the perfect opportunity to reset my choices. The great news was I lost 15lbs in 3 months of being very organized with the planning meals ahead. Making sure my lunch was made on Sunday for the next 3 or 4 days allowed me one flexible day to eat something different. After awhile, having the consistency of already having lunch with me made life so much easier and I actually liked what I was eating without getting bored.
The interesting thing I found was if I ate anything loaded with sugar I had two different reactions: I either wasn’t wowed by it, in fact completely disappointed with it, and didn’t get the ‘treat’ fix I was looking for or I ate a small amount and then my body went into withdrawal mode and I desperately wanted more. When I ate things not on plan, my body really let me know and so it became easy to not eat those things because I knew how bad I would feel and it wasn’t worth it. Over the next few months I slowly lost the remaining 5lbs and managed to stay at goal and sometimes a bit under for over a year. I no longer have the blood sugar crashes that left me hangry (hungry +angry) and I didn’t need the snacks that I had trained myself into thinking I needed to keep my metabolism running. When I’m training for a longer distance run, fueling my body to function efficiently is a logical decision.
Reminding myself that I should be doing that all the time is what I’m still working on. But a huge part is the water! Drinking enough water throughout the day is key. It was definitely a huge factor in the weight loss phase but is just as important in the maintenance phase. I was never a big soda drinker but sometimes I do find myself craving the carbonation and seltzer does the trick. We got a soda stream for the house (to also minimized the amount of plastic bottles we were going through) because my 7 year old daughter drinks seltzer like crazy.
It has been easy cooking for a kid close to plan because she doesn’t know the difference. Sure, she has the kid staples when we go out but at home she’s a protein (meat) & veggie girl and has never complained about it. She’s even loving the salad bar at school now. So it shows we can teach our kids that healthy choices don’t have to be boring. Diet is not a word I use around her. I have to be careful not to use the words fat or skinny because she is already becoming aware of what they mean (which is depressing) so we try to stick with healthy/unhealthy and foods that make you strong.
I am currently five and a half months pregnant and still haven’t reached my heaviest weight. Unfortunately I did fall off the plan in the beginning as I felt so sick and all I could tolerate were cooked veggies not salads, but could handle chicken, as long as I didn’t have to cook it and I added potatoes back into the mix because they were bland enough and filled me up. Eating out, I ate more fried than I have in years but much of those choices came from making sure my food was cooked to minimize the chance of food poisoning. But for breakfast, eggs were hard and muffins seemed an easy choice even though my stomach hated me after. Starting to get back on track now with the healthier choices so hopefully that will help. Eggs are still a challenge but oatmeal is back in the mix so I add hemp seeds or quinoa to up to protein.
So almost 2 years in and for the most part, I’m still following the guidelines. The best part is no matter how many times you blur the lines it is always easy to come back. The maintenance part is actually easier than you think it can be. But having a support system is key! Whether it is your family and friends or The Luminous community, always reach out to someone. This is not something you need to do alone but find the support to help minimize the impact of those who may sabotage you, even when they don’t mean to. The main thing is to remember how good you feel when you’re eating the nutritious foods and it makes it easier to not make the old habit choices. This is not a quick fix weight loss plan, this truly is a lifestyle change that really is easy when you make it important in your life. Sara has plenty of great recipes in the cookbook and it’s all about making things ahead so you aren’t left deciding what to eat based on emotions.