The top 10 changes I have made

Posted: April 21, 2011 in Fitness/Exercise, Food, General, Gluten Free

Thought I would come on for an update, it’s been a busy week!

I have new (temporary) hours at work, 8am to 4pm, which changed my schedule (gym, eating, sleeping) a bit. I actually really like these hours though, I get tons more done in the day and I have less I have to worry about getting to on the weekend. I can see people after work and I can actually enjoy my weekend as oppose to doing laundry, getting groceries, cleaning up.. So lots of good changes this week along with the launch of a new website(Ottawa Sun) and the new TV station (Sun News). Combined it has made for a very interesting week.

I was thinking about all the changes I have made in my life. There was a time when I hated change and would bend over backwards to avoid it. Now it seems that each week there’s a new change. Change is good!

I have worked hard trying to find easier ways to do things in the past couple of years, as well as foods that I like, that are healthy and help with my weight-loss efforts. Here is a list of changes I have made in the past few years, some recent, some I made right away.

1. Gluten Free – This is one of the more recent changes, though I have gone gluten-free before. I didn’t realize how much better I felt when I was gluten-free. Small things like headaches, aching joints, blurry vision, seemed to have crept back into my life and it went unnoticed until it got worse. I also forgot about how hard going gluten-free is at first on my body. As the gluten goes away, the healing process begins and at this point, everything seems to bother me. I get a cold, I get infections, I can’t drink milk without getting cramps.. my stomach just gets very picky, so I have had to make some other food changes along with the gluten-free for the time being.. in a few months I will start feeling much better again, can’t wait!

Freezer2. Freezer foods – I don’t mean the kind you just buy from the grocery store, I’m talking about making your own meals and freezing them for quick & healthy options throughout the week. This has changed the way I eat and I can’t think of a time when I wouldn’t do this.. I love my freezer!

Poutine3. Eating out – I use to eat out every day, lunch (every day) and supper a couple of times a week – my how things have changed! Now, I go out to eat 1 maybe 2 times a month. Everything I eat I make myself, at home. I have brought a lunch to work everyday for the past couple years

Water bottles4. Water – never use to drink it, unless it was in the form of juice. Now I drink it all day, every day! The juice I have is cranberry juice(no sugar added) I add water to my cranberry juice though cause it’s very strong! I also drink coconut water (great for after workouts) and once in a while I’ll have a sip(not a whole glass) of other juices (apple or pineapple) but a big bottle of apple juice will last me forever!

5. Sugar/Sweeteners – I was a candy addict, sour candy was my favourite (still is) but I don’t indulge very often and usually when I do it’s too sweet and I only end up eating 1 or 2. When I cook I use honey, stevia or cane sugar. I stay away from High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sweetnlow, sucralose, NutraSweet, Splenda, Saccharin.. I just don’t believe they are good for you and do more harm than good to our bodies.

6. Chocolate – I am not huge on chocolate but I do enjoy it once in a while.. these days I actually eat chocolate more often than I use to but small pieces and only Dark Chocolate – between 70 and 85% cocoa.. I always look to make sure it has no soy in it though, the less additives the better!

7. Processed foods – I stay away from processed foods, the less ingredients the better I say. When I shop in the grocery store I stay close to the outer aisles(Fruits, veggies, dairy, meat). I’ll venture into some aisles for spices, breakfast food like oatmeal, household items and cat litter but that’s it. It’s especially important for people who are gluten-free to avoid processed foods because the ingredient lists on most products are so vast and they put gluten in the oddest thing these days. It saves me tons of time buying less processed foods, just because I don’t have to read labels, plus I don’t like eating foods that I can’t even pronounce or couldn’t buy in a grocery store myself.

8. Coconut – This is a new thing for me, I can’t say I was ever a huge fan of coconut and I won’t go into long detail about why coconut is so healthy because I am actually working on an entire blog post just on coconut. But I have to say, lately I am using coconut oil, water, milk often. It’s a great and healthy addition to my list of foods!

9. Eating Raw/Natural foods – Most of my meals include natural raw foods, the ingredients aren’t highly processed and I am trying to go more organic, especially with fruits/veggies that you eat the skin. Grass-fed cattle and free-range chicken and eggs… I have read a lot about the benefits of organic foods and think that trying to incorporate them as much as possible is important.

10. Exercise – I don’t know why I left this to the last but not all the changes in my life has to do with food. I think that for healthy weight loss most of the changes that need to be made are with your food but the rest is in exercise. At the beginning the food and exercise are both very challenging. I would make small changes and add more as I got use to the change. At first as long as I was getting to the gym 3-4 times a week and getting in 30 minutes at the least, that was good. As I have come closer to my goals, the less pounds I have to lose, the more focus is on exercise. The food for me I have down pat, it’s the exercise I always struggle with just because, well I don’t really know. I am not a fan of exercise, never have been. What I am a fan of is how I feel afterwards and of course the benefits it has to my waistline!

That’s it, so what are your top 10 things you have changed or are hoping to change? I can’t say I made all these changes in one day. Each week I strive to make new changes, whether it’s with my exercise or with the foods I eat. You become more aware of what is good for you and what your body doesn’t like as you go through the process. Knowledge is power for everything, including weight-loss!

  1. Carrie says:

    This is a great topic T. So many people have a hard time with change and it helps to read what others are going through and to know that someone else struggles with change as well.

    I am a creature of habit and sometimes have a hard time with change, but these recent changes are just so exciting for me that I’m adjusting well.

    Here are my 10 changes:

    1) Quit smoking (7 weeks ago!)
    2) Quit drinking Pepsi (6 weeks ago) Used to drink it all day every day. About 12/day
    3) Quit eating take-out and junk food. I used to eat ONLY junk food. I’m not joking.
    4) Eat lots of fruits, veggies, lean meat
    5) Take multi-vitamins & omega 3 supplements
    6) Drink lots of water. I never drank water before. Now, I don’t go anywhere without my trusty water bottle.
    7) No sugar (or very very little)
    8) Food prep. I used to make my lunch in a rush in the mornings, which led to grabbing something really unhealthy or getting take out at lunch. Now I spend up to 2 hours on Sunday evenings preparing meals for the week for myself and my family. I actually enjoy this time and listen to music and share a few things with the dog (who sits at my feet anxiously waiting for a bit) Food prep makes for much more organized mornings and healthy eating during the week.
    9) Exercise! I used to get NO exercise. I mean it, none. Now I walk 1.5 miles every day at lunch and another 1.5 or 2 miles (depending on the route) with my dog every evening. I also do an exercise class 1 night a week and go to the gym for cardio/strength 2 or 3 times/week
    10) Sleep. I make an effort to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Rest is essential to good health and without it, I’m a zombie in a nasty mood!

    Thanks T :) That was actually fun. Each of those items are a triumph and putting them into writing so they are visible makes me very proud of myself.

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