4 years ago I started a new life. Today I wanted to share with you how I started my healthy living.
My lifestyle was…no bueno.
I have been a vegetarian since age 19.
There were some traumatic experiences involving animal cruelty that led me to stop eating meat. I just could not get over them for a while, then it became a habit to have a plant-based diet. During that time I also was a smoker, and became a sugar addict. I was a student and a musician. I had what some would call a bohemian lifestyle while being very poor, and having a 100 dollars for all my expenses a month while living in one of the most expensive cities in the world. I stayed up all night, partied at jazz gigs, and slept for a couple of hours before going to school. So…my diet consisted of pastries, cookies, cakes, and coffee. Since I was a smoker, I barely had any appetite. Coffee and sugar, and cigarettes every hour. Drinks at night, no exercise. For over 5 years. I felt happy but tired. I was dependent on cigarettes, coffee, and sugar. They made me happy. I barely ate any nutritious meals. Then things started to decline, slowly.
Need to say my skin never been clear, always very dry, and acne was a constant enemy in my life. My sleep was unhealthy, and tiredness was my best friend. Then add high blood pressure, belly fat, hormone imbalance, and mood swings. I would get sick often, was stressed all the time, and my relationship with myself wasn’t great. While I was proud of being a vegetarian, I knew there was something wrong with me. I always limited my food, and obsessed over calories. Yet I could binge eat 3 bags of popcorn while studying at 1 am.
And then one day I woke up and craved bacon. Seriously, “What is wrong with me?” – I thought. I lived with a host family at the time, and felt extremely embarrassed of even mentioning my desire to try a piece of meat. One night when everyone was sleeping, I went to the fridge and pulled out a piece of frozen, pre-cooked bacon from the freezer (Yikes, I know). It tasted so good. A few days later I confessed to my friends I have been a bacon thieve for a few nights. I decided to follow my gut ( literally), and implement some meaty bites to my diet. That was the time when I also learned all the truths about processed sugar and grains (Thanks Mark and Heather Lofquists!). At that time, I had quit smoking for 3 years, but barely did any exercise. Shopping was indeed my cardio. I started running. Hated, hated, hated it. Once my body started to detox, I got so much energy I only needed 4 hours of sleep for over a month! I felt amazing. My skin started to clear, I loved my food and mountains of veggies on my plate. Singed up for a half marathon, and that was a point of no return. I felt like a queen of the world. Need to say more self-love and realization what our body is capable of (by nature, not manufacturing) opened my mind. Changed my life, my self-attitude, my relationships with others to the better. I met an amazing guy just 6 months later, and in 4 more months we became a husband and wife. Sounds like a fairy tale? Well, that happened to me. Just 4 years ago.
No More Diets.
I will never go back. They say “Never say never”, but when one is so confident in success and methods that work, you can trust the statement. I look back, and find it preposterous – it took me 10 years of being a vegetarian, a smoker, an unhealthy person – to learn where the truth is. So far I am yet to meet a person who tried what I did 4 years ago, and reversed it back to the traditional “Low Fat, High Carb” crap. If the SAD (Standard American diet) worked, there would be no sad people. Get it?
Since then…I completed 4 full marathons, a few halves, moved across the country twice, started a business (almost twice), and many many other cool things happened to me. I love Paleo/Primal community, the knowledge it shares, the kindness of people’s spirits, and the love it creates in people’s lives. Don’t get me wrong – I have a lot of respect for vegetarians, but I do not follow it anymore.
This turned out to be quite emotional for my first post, haha. Just wanted to let you know…I am here for ya!