Did you make a New Year's Resolution?
I couldn't help but be reminded this past week; it seems everywhere I went I'd overhear that question (and tried to casually linger long enough to hear the reply!) Those related to weight-loss garnered a bit more of my attention.
Two that hold a special place for me? In a few days, we'll start our next 9-week Challenge at Goals in Motion, and of course, the beginning of 2015 has also been marked by the kick-off of Lyn-Genet's The Plan, for the group of us participating from Hawthorn University.
Today, as people braved the cold to have their “before” pictures taken at Goals, I couldn't help but think, it was three years ago, January 2012, that I too started down the road to better health.
Looking back at that season, I realize it wasn't a quest for weight-loss per se, although that certainly was part of the equation. Instead, I desperately wanted to change my life, learn how to be present, and start living.
There was a weariness in my spirit, from the years of my weight, and all the issues that came with it, running as a continuous conversation in the back of my mind. At 40 + it was time to stop defining my worth by the size of my hips, put an end to the white-knuckling and calorie-counting, and the inevitable guilt that followed when I'd surrender to a box of cookies a midnight
A healthier mindset had to be part of the equation for being a better me
I can't help but think of all of the lists I'd started over the years, with their implied beginnings and then endings. Tomorrow I'll start, and when I have my new body, I'm sure I'll have all the traits of the kind of person I want to be. It'll give me a new love (!) a new life (!)
Inevitably, I'd find myself a few weeks later, waving the white flag over a cookie, a plate of pasta with butter and parmesan cheese, or a chocolate cake. The only course of action being, to retreat into myself defeated, realizing I was a mere inch away from where I was the day I started. Resigning myself to the idea that maybe this will have to be good enough
Though I didn't set out to, somewhere, in the midst of it all, I'm so thankful to have found my way, along with the gift of grace. It seems sweeter, and truer to my heart, to have finally stopped
Instead of creating lists of how things will be better when, I try to create some new changes, big or small, every day. Realizing the simple act of creating, is change
When I find myself playing old tapes in my mind, I'm conscious about saying nice words to myself, out loud
Instead of waging war with my flatware, I've begun thinking of each meal as nourishment and fuel
Instead of counting calories and obsessing about every morsel of food I put into my mouth, I'm focusing instead on better health and my well being
Instead of worrying about how my skinny jeans fit today, I'm putting that energy into loving my body and being kind to my spirit
Instead of diets and resolutions, and always waiting for my happiest life to start, I'm learning to simply live and love every day, from a mindset of abundance.
It's one of the hardest things I've ever done, practicing the art of being present. Especially in a world that tells us if we're going to matter, we have to be thin. It's hard to stay the course
But what I know for sure is, it's one of the best decisions I've ever made.
Those who follow The Veggies know I've been following Lyn-Gene's The Plan, and today I'm starting Day 9.
A quick recap
I've discovered I'm mildly reactive to rye crackers (which are a gateway to other bread products, which I've yet to test). Also, I'm mildly reactive to egg whites. How do I know? The average weight loss on the plan is .5 lbs/day. Anything below that will more than likely be a sign that a reactionary food was eaten the day before.
Chicken and goat cheese are friendly for me
To date, I've lost six pounds
The symptoms of detox weren't as severe as others I've tried. I'm so thankful
The food is delicious, although the prep work is non-trivial
I haven't found myself hungry too terribly often
(much more to come .. )
This recipe for apple streusel is on the menu as a breakfast option for The Plan. It's simple to make, delicious, and has been a wonderful change of pace from flax granola.
ps: For a few more thoughts about The Plan .. here
~ Adapted from The Plan by Lyn-Genet Recitas
Apple Streusel (The Plan)
- Streusel Topping
- 1 ½ cup almond flour
- ⅛ cup natural sugar (Sugar in the Raw or Turbinado)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ cup butter, at room temp (or coconut oil, melted, but not hot)
- Apple Filling
- 3 apples, cored and chopped into ½" pieces
- ⅛ cup natural sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ tsp cloves
- Preheat oven to 350° F
- Prepare 4 (8 oz) baking ramekins (I've used two 6" cast-iron skillets)
- In a small bowl, add all of the streusel topping ingredients and mix until they combined (the topping will be crumbly)
- In a medium bowl, add all of the ingredients for the apple filling and toss to combine. Distribute the apple mix between the ramekins, or into whatever baking vessel you're using.
- Top with streusel topping.
- Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until the streusel topping is lightly browned.
- Serve warm or refrigerate