What kind of nutritional role models were your parents? Where did you learn healthy eating? When?
I shared this story before but I will share it again since it was a while ago and I have some new readers. Growing up, I was very active and athletic. Besides when I seemed to hit puberty around 4th grade and put on weight, I was mainly a fit kid growing up. I didn't really think about food and exercise or know what healthy choices were out there. I didn't think about it. Fast forward to freshmen year of college, when I really started drinking and partying - add on 20 pounds. I was still hitting the gym, but not really aware, and was definitely self-conscious of my body for the first time, especially after looking around me. Going into sophomore year after a summer of drinking more, I was around 150 pounds, which was a lot for my 5"4 frame. I decided to go out for the crew team, and upon finding out above 130 was heavyweight/under 130 lightweight, I made it my goal to lose the weight for the spring season. I did so by cutting calories to 1100 everyday and making sure that I burned more calories than I ate everyday- so in addition to crew practice, I'd run, swim, do kickboxing, lift.. any type of exercise. The calories that I was eating were made of stir fry from the dining hall, veggie burgers, balance bars... that is probably all - my calories were severely low! I managed to lose more than 25 pounds in 6 months, which was gradual. From that point on, I developed a real awareness for what was going into my body and what I needed to do to maintain my weight. I also took a class on nutrition and was very interested.
The next few years my weight stayed in the 120s but I felt like my life was based on maintaining my weight and what I was going to eat next. This took a toll on my fun characteristics and happiness! That was about 10 years ago and I went through those years being fit most of the time but always conscious and always eating well, with some sweets in moderation of course. Although it is not as bad now as it was then, anytime I am not feeling good about my body, it is a big downer - sometimes I do feel like it plays too much of a role in my life and would like to not worry about it. I get there when I am in a good place w/ my body - but am still working on losing baby weight and it isn't fun. I'm trying to just eat well and keep up some kind of activity.
Back to role models - I want to be a good role model for my family. The Super Baby Food book is awesome, and I can't wait to use it. I feel like I am a great eater and am looking forward to serving my family healthy meals. I don't want to be a crazo and have my kids not know what something like OREOS are, but I don't want someone to look in my cabinets and see crap food.
Here I am down the shore at my grandparents house, and I get irritated when I open the cabinets. They are filled with foods from various aunts and uncles leaving things here: Doritos, Tastycakes, Poptarts, Sugary cereals. Nothing that I would eat unless I was on an island / starving and had nothing to eat. I don't know whose house doesn't have things like this in the cabinet - (well, mine doesn't), but I'm also not sure how to change things. I wish coming to the shore wasn't a deluge of junk food. I dream of going home to my parents' and relatives houses and finding the cabinets full of dried cranberries, kashi, nuts, protein powder, oatmeal, fresh fruit & veggies, quinoa? millet? wheat germ? ... alas.. I never see this happening. How to change things?
In running news, I barely made it over the 20 mile mark this week - and I could use a few days off, so I'm just running when I feel like it, and plan to swim by midweek!
Here's Nick at the beach - we're here for a long weekend: