Food is fuel.
Food is fuel.
When I was in high school, I was constantly working out.
I didn’t have to worry about calories, and I was fortunate to eat a lot of home-cooked meals.
When I went to college, things changed.
I gained the FRESHMEN 15! (And that is being polite.)
See, I decided that I needed fewer obligations during college (I was burnt out from too many commitments in high school), so I went to the gym two to three times a week (elliptical for about 20 minutes) and ate what I thought was fairly healthy.
So, how did I gain the weight?! I thought pretzels and Powerade were healthy snacks. Then, I would go to dinner and have the chicken strips or raviolis from the cafeteria. I would eat the white bagels with peanut butter in the morning or skip it completely. Before I realized it, I was uncomfortable. My supposed healthy food choices were actually uneducated choices.
It took until my 3rd year of college to recognize how I was really feeling – uncomfortable and tired – all of the time…and how I was really looking – not physically fit! I had somehow convinced the person in the mirror that they weren’t gaining weight/weren’t uncomfortable.
I don’t remember why, but I decided things HAD to change…NOT living in the dorms and NOT having the mandatory meal plan at the cafeteria would certainly help.
I worked out 4 – 6 days a week (I planned it as a part of my daily schedule) and educated myself on what was really healthy.
I did NOT diet. I changed my mind to recogize, “Food is fuel.”
I tried to eat clean foods and eliminate the excessive “bad” carbohydrates. I lost the weight, but it was hard work.
During this time, I did let myself have one day a week (Saturday) when I had things I wanted/missed. It was my day to “fall off the wagon” and give myself permission to get back on. The irony, I eventually didn’t want bad days because my body began to crave the healthier choices/clean foods. I felt better when I used food as fuel instead of entertainment or enjoyment.
Working out is the first step in changing how you feel. Diet (as in proper food choices and not a temporary change to lose weight) is the next step.
You have to do both in order to achieve and maintain the results you desire.
It is important to be healthy on both the outside and inside.
Please don’t choose to “diet” but rather choose to change your diet to healthier choices.
And, if you fall of the wagon, don’t obsess over it and get back on!
And repeat – food is fuel!
*I am not a dietician or expert in nutrition. I am just writing about things that have worked for me.
A favorite SMOOTHIE recipe I make frequently:
*Fresh strawberries (or frozen)
*A little granola at the end if you choose.