Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mindful eating and self-love

I have a bit of catching up to do! Here's how the 52 Days til Summer challenge has been going:

Week 3 Challenge

Last week's challenge was to pay attention to your eating. As Ashley put it:

Is what you’re eating helping you reach your goals and hit your full potential? Are you eating mindfully and nourishing your body? Or are there things in your diet that need to go? How are you keeping track of it?

I admit that I did not give as much attention to this challenge as I have to the past ones. It was a whirlwind week that included my 9 year (!) anniversary with my BF and a trip home to Belleville for the long weekend, and my mind was in a place where I wanted to have fun and not think too much about what I was eating.

However, having the challenge in the back of my mind proved to help me make some wise eating choices without feeling deprived. My parent's fridge was stocked with veggies so I fit as many of those in as I could in meals at home, and tried to make healthy choices at meals out. There were indulgences (I cannot resist a trip to Slickers ice cream while on a shopping excursion in Prince Edward County, nor can I turn down a home-baked butter tart made by a family friend) but to me, being mindful about my eating does not mean excluding foods like this from my diet forever. It means keeping foods like this to exactly what they should be - occasional indulgences - and eating healthy, whole foods the rest of the time.

Even though it is now time to move onto a new challenge, the mindful eating challenge has proven to have some staying power. The other day at work I stared down a box of Timbits that a co-worker had brought into the office. Usually, I overindulge on Timbits - once I eat one, I just want more and more. But I looked in the box and realized that all my favourites had already been picked out, and thought, "why eat them if I don't even really want them?" It was a small but proud moment for me!

Week 4 Challenge

Week 4 already, wow! This week's challenge is to practice some self-love, specifically to try and counter negative thoughts with positive thoughts.

After some thinking on it, I decided the best place for me to start exercising some self love is when I am...exercising!

I tend to get frustrated with myself very quickly when it comes to exercising. I sometimes feel that I'm not seeing the results that I should be seeing and I have a tendency to blame myself - that I'm not working hard enough, or that I'm just not capable of becoming stronger and more fit. A good place to turn some negative thoughts into positive ones:

Instead of thinking, "My arms are so weak," I will think, "These arms used to have trouble with 2 pound weights and now they are lifting 5 pound weights. They have come a long way!"

Instead of thinking, "You can't even do a pushup yet, how sad," I will think, "It is great that you are committed to the goal of doing a pushup. Keep practicing and you will get there!"

Instead of thinking, "Why is this so hard for me? I should be better by now" I will think, "You are doing things that you never thought you would do, and pushing yourself instead of being content to stay at the level you are. Good for you!"

I need this kind of self love in my life. It will encourage me to keep exercising and not give up, to keep challenging myself, and to stop beating myself up over not being super fit yet, and instead appreciate that by becoming more active, I am doing something healthy and kind for myself.

Next week I will be traveling to Edmonton for work and then a visit with my lovely sister, for which I am super excited. It may not leave me with much time to blog but I will do what I can, and at the very least take lots of pictures so I can make an epic post when I return!

1 comment:

  1. Keep up the good work Laura! And have fun on your trip!