Are You Listening?
Everyday your body talks to you. Do you know it’s voice?
This past weekend I actually heard mine talk to me. Well, actually, it screamed at me.
Quite a few times.
This weekend, Cinco de Mayo to be exact, I celebrated my 37th birthday. This meant that I strayed a bit from my normal, healthy way of eating. Okay, maybe strayed isn’t the best word to describe what I did. A better word would be abandoned.
How in the world does my birthday have anything to do with hearing your body speak to you? Amuse me for a bit while I go over a few things.
Friday we celebrated my birthday with the kids by going to our favorite, local pizzeria. Pepperoni pizza and a salad with ranch dressing. I think my reverse osmosis water that I brought from home was the healthiest thing I ate that night.
Saturday, my actual birthday, started wonderfully with my Hubby making pancakes (his version, not mine) and eggs with a glass of whole milk.
I enjoyed snacking on chocolate chip cookies (my version of New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookies). I probably visited the cookie jar 23 more times than I should have. To this day I say that it was worth it.
For dinner, Hubby and I went out for dinner and dessert. Dinner was at a little local Mexican restaurant called El Tepehaun. They have wonderful burritos we call El Burros, chips and super hot, yet addicting salsa. Somehow I ate all of it.
There I sat at this quaint little counter watching this lady meticulously arranging these fabulous desserts. I sat there in pure amazement as she painted the white, square plates with chocolate sauce, cilantro and perfectly round scoops of ice cream set upon pellet sized chocolate balls. I was anxiously awaiting my order of churros with ice cream accompanied by a hot mocha, with the foam sitting there with a perfect design drawn in it as Hubby waited for his layered chocolate cake and chocolate malt.
We chose the healthy options off the menu, can’t you tell?
Then they arrived. For a brief moment I though I heard angels singing. My goodness – what better way to end my birthday evening than to consume churros with chocolate dipping sauce? Deep fried goodness covered in cinnamon and sugar. I’m sure everything I ate was refined and overly processed. Hubby’s chocolate cake was absolutely amazing. Dense, moist and not too rich. I’m not sure I’ve ever tasted such a tasty chocolate cake.
I was only able to eat 2 of the 3 churros, because they were so rich. They actually melted in my mouth as I bit into them. So, I took my lone churro home and realized at 10:30 pm that I should eat the left over, award winning churro – since it definitely wouldn’t taste as good the next day.
I laid in bed that night feeling like I had 3 bowling balls sitting inside my stomach. My body was not accustomed to all this heavy food.
I managed to actually sleep that night and vowed I wouldn’t eat food for the next 2 days.
Sunday morning I did good by eating Wheat Farina for breakfast – it felt good eating real food again.
Then it went downhill from there. Again. After church I stopped by the grand opening of our new Coffee / Book Shop. Of course I supported our church and ordered a small latte. Then it was leftover pizza for lunch and some organic, chocolate cake that Hubby made on Saturday for dessert. After a little afternoon hike at Mt. Falcon, we made our routine ‘after hiking’ trip for ice cream.
I figured I’d keep it simple by getting just a single scoop, but messed it all up by getting a chocolate dipped waffle cone to hold my Sleepless In Seattle ice cream scoop. By the time we got home all I could manage to do was drag myself around and accomplish nothing.
This is the point of my ramblings.
I heard my body talking to me. More like scream at me, but non-the-less, my body was not happy with the choices I made all weekend and it was letting me know. I ignored it and ignored it good. I had no energy, my stomach was so heavy and I seemed really tired throughout the day, when normally that doesn’t hit me until the evening. My husband was even a tad concerned and kept making sure I was okay since he isn’t use to seeing me just sit and do nothing. I told him that I didn’t eat anything over the course of the weekend that actually provided my body with energy.
As I sat there in what people call a ‘food coma’ I realized something. It was enlightening.
This is how people live everyday of their lives. They eat out all the time, consuming heavy, refined and processed foods in excessive amounts, get no exercise, they’re tired, sleepy and lacking energy all the time and they don’t get restful sleep at night. In order to combat the physical side of this, they drown themselves with coffee, energy drinks or sugar-laden foods to get those quick bursts of energy. But those are short lived and in the end, people never do anything to change this vicious cycle.
Everyday our bodies speak to us, but are we listening?
It was so clear to me by the end of this weekend that I can tell when I am feeding my body foods that my body needs and can do something with – as oppose to eating foods that are hard on my digestive system, drain energy from me and provide little to no nourishment. I think so many people are so accustomed to feeling ‘bad’ that it’s actually ‘normal’ to them. Most people may not even wake up to hearing what their bodies are saying until they take some time to eliminate their SAD diet (Standard American Diet) and allow their bodies to start with a clean slate.
This is why I encourage and recommend for all my clients to make certain changes to their eating habits, such as eliminating processed foods, refined flours and sugars, soda and more. I also have them go grain-free for at least 3 weeks. This serves many purposes, but it’s a great way to give your digestive system a rest, so once you start introducing grains back in, you’ll be able to tell how they are actually affecting the body. Most people find that that when they try to go back to eating their old way – their body rebels – and rightfully so!
We need to come to terms with the truth that our body was created to function a certain way. It requires specific nutrients to remain healthy, thriving and strong. If we neglect to give our body what it needs, then issues began surfacing. If only we realized that just because we don’t like it, it doesn’t mean our body doesn’t need it AND just because we like it, doesn’t mean our body needs it. How profound.
Don’t get me wrong – I enjoyed my weekend with my family, date night with Hubby and all the great-tasting food! It just reminded me that eating this way cannot be a daily thing for me. When I enjoy these foods and outings on special occasions, I do just fine. It’s when I try to live off those foods that my body speaks up and firmly tells me STOP! I’ve learned the importance of listening to my body (not my mind and physical cravings) and it has benefited me in more ways then I could possibly express.
Are you listening to your body today?
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