How many times have you told yourself, or heard someone else say, “If I could just lose 10, 20, 50 pounds, I would feel so much better!” Then how many times have we all tried to do this with less than desirable results? Let’s face it, there are many of us that dieting doesn’t work for. Most of the diets out there are hard to maintain and most of us just give up. Trust me, when I start reading about one and the see the words “meal plan” or “meal replacement”, I immediately stop reading. I’m not going to deprive myself of the things I love, or drink my meals. I don’t have time to rearrange my schedule to accommodate a diet or meal plan. Nor do I habe the time to stop what I’m doing to make a shake or eat at a certain time. Some will see that as lazy or me not being serious about my health, I see it as real life and it’s just not for me. I have kids and a husband that would probably not eat 95% of what most of these plans include and I don’t have the time or money to make several different meals.
What if you tried to do it the other way around? What if you tried getting healthy first? Coming to terms with yourself and the body you’re in. Move a little more, drink more water, drink one less soda or energy drink today, pay attention to what you’re putting into your body and how it makes you feel. Be aware and conscious of your habits. Then, if you want to eat that cookie, cupcake or donut…EAT IT! Don’t deprive yourself of anything. Instead, understand what you are putting into your body and pay attention to how your body reacts to it.
A year and a half ago I knew nothing about gut health. I heard about it all the time but never really put much thought into it. Probiotics, prebiotics, vitamins, supplements…Eh…not gonna make much difference for me, I’m good. Well, I was completely wrong. I had no idea how something as simple as an antibiotic could wreak havoc on my system and at the same time finding the right pre/probiotic could have so many benefits. I had no idea how much I actually needed them until I started them.
I also didn’t know how many ailments, conditions and side effects could be eliminated by getting your gut right. Headaches, anxiety, joint pain, blood sugar, cholesterol, sleeplessness, lack of energy, mood, weight issues (underweight or overweight), allergies and that’s just to name a few. It is amazing how our body works and how much originates in our gut. I am still no expert but I do know how doing this has made me feel and what it has helped me with. I can only speak from personal experience, not from a PhD or degree of any kind.
I used to live on ibuprofen daily, all day. Headaches, joint pain, all over body pain. I would literally feel like I was 80 years old getting out of bed in the mornings. It took a good hour for my feet to feel like they could work normally. No matter how little or much sleep I got, i never ever felt rested when I woke up. I was groggy, tired all day, my mood sucked and I relied heavily on ibuprofen, coffee and energy drinks to get me through my day. My main focus every day was going through the motions to get through my day so I could just go to bed. Then lay there and wonder why I couldn’t fall asleep and then just do it all again the next day. I chalked it up to my job, having kids, getting older and just life in general. This was not living, this was existing and I just got to a point that I was done with it.
Right before I was getting ready to make a doctor appointment to go to get myself checked for some answers to all of my issues, my friend talked me into doing what she had been doing for the last year. She was coming off all her meds, her weight was down, she was actually feeling good. I was skeptical. Very much skeptical. How could a few supplements really make that much of a difference? I wasn’t one who favored taking pills all day long but was that really any different than what I was already doing with the ibuprofen, etc? These were natural, good for you, could make a difference in my overall existence and I was still hesitant in doing it. Funny how the brain works. I had someone literally offering me something that was going to help me but being a creature of habit with prescriptions and over the counter stuff, it seemed strange to me.
However, I was so desperate at this point I did it. I took her advice. I did what she told me to do. I started on my unknown journey. One little drink, once a day. No way was this really going to be beneficial. It was too simple. Everything else I had read about or been offered had a stick regimen. Do this at them time, do something else at this time, etc. To start this was just one thing, once a day at whatever time I wanted.
It took me one week. Just one. A few days after starting I was craving bananas, I don’t eat bananas. Come to find out my body was craving what it needed, not what o was used to putting into it. After about a week, I woke up and I actually wanted to get out of bed, and guess what? My feet worked like a normal person and I wasn’t aching all over and walking around like the hunchback of Notre Dame. After a few weeks I noticed that I hadn’t touched that bottle of ibuprofen and I hadn’t had a headache in a while. I was feeling good all day and I never even reached or longed for that second cup of coffee. I actually didn’t even want to drink the first cup. Coming from someone who drank more than a pot a day…that’s saying a lot.
That was it for me. After 30 days I was finally a believer. I was all in and I started adding other products. They still worked with my schedule. Still fit into my lifestyle. I don’t think I felt that good when I was in my 20’s. It wasn’t my job, wasn’t my kids and it wasn’t just life and me getting older. It was about getting my gut right. Paying attention to my body. Putting the right things into it and balancing it out. Now, after a year and a half, I’m down 35 pounds. I have had maybe 2 headaches. My cholesterol is normal. My mood is stableish. I don’t hurt all over all the time. I’m not tired and groggy all the time. I still have bad days but the good days completely outweigh those.
I’m not perfect. I still eat cake and steak and cheese. I don’t exercise regularly and I am still human. However, this was something that I could easily fit into MY schedule and life. This worked with me and my ever changing schedule. I didn’t have to change up my days or stop what I was doing. It is simple and it works.
So the truth is, none of us got unhealthy overnight. There is no magic pill that is going to make you lose 50 pounds in a week, and if there is it isn’t healthy and it’s not sustainable. It takes time, patience and consistency. It takes being human and taking responsibility for yourself. It takes you listening to someone who has gone through it and come out on the other side. It takes a leap of faith. It takes going against everything you’ve known and become accustomed to.
It’s not about getting skinny. It’s about getting healthy!