Monday, June 22, 2009

WTF I am

So this is what I've decided to feed myself with today...
B: Vega protein powder, unsweetened almond milk, strawberries, 2 tsp flax oil, 1 tbs raw cacao powder, 1 tsp crystal manna blue green algae.
L: multigrain pasta with cannelini beans, broccoli and faux cheese red star sauce
D: sunshine burger on an ezekiel bun with spinach, sprouts, red swiss chard and portobello mushrooms as a side dish
snacks: apples, carrots, jalapeno hummus.

Yup, this is how I have been eating lately (hippie food, anyone?). In some ways, it's a return to the comfort zone of my past---vegetarianism/veganism. I'm not the world's greatest meat eater, to be perfectly honest. In fact, I've been finding meat to be increasingly revolting for the past 6 months. I started eating fish in 2000 on the advice of three different acupuncture physicans and the bodybuilding community at large. The animal product eating "experiment" continued for most of my 30's and I've been ambivalent for most of that time. I've gone back to veganism, raw veganism or just good old vegetarianism over and over again but felt like I just couldn't get it right. I kept wanting to binge on cheese and dairy products. A lot of that had to do with my eating disordered ways and nothing to do with veganism itself. I've been silently cheering on the resurgence of veganism in the media---Oprah doing the Quantum Wellness challenge, Skinny Bitch (altho I have serious issues with that book), The Engine 2 Diet, the guys behind Precision Nutrition and Turbulence Training trying out plant based diets and even my favorite fitness blogger, Skwigg, has taken the plant-based plunge recently. For me, it goes beyond the whole "plant-based diet" phenomenon---it has to do with my spiritual growth. I cannot continue on the path I've been on without taking the leap to a more compassionate way of living that encompasses all living creatures.

I am also shifting my workout ideals and body image ideas. I worked with a personal trainer for the past few months who was simply AMAZING...she's a NPC figure competitor and there's a link to her on my blog. I learned so much from her in the short time I got to work with her. But during that time I also made some serious realizations about myself:

1. I have no desire to be a figure competitor, esp. since it seems to involve torture and tilapia, and not necessarily in that order.
2. I am tired of being in physical pain, and my workouts have been contributing to that level of pain for quite some time. My eating has been significantly contributing to that pain level by causing inflammation and emotional distress.
3. I am no longer willing to judge my self-worth by the numbers on the scale or by the size of my pants or by my age and physical appearance. I am an almost 40 year old woman and even when I was 16 I didn't look like some of the 16 year olds I see today. Trying to force myself to fit a beauty standard that is sick and discriminatory by nature is not happening for me anymore.
3. I hate eating fish. I fucking hate it.
4. My diet has been working against my spiritual growth. Period.
5. If I don't make some serious, permanent changes, my health will continue to decline and I will continue to be a miserable, sick, binge eater.
6. I engage in negative self talk in every area of my life all day long. My thought patterns hold me captive. They hinder me in every area of my life. My lack of acceptance/sheer hatred of myself is astonishing. I've been working with affirmations a lot lately.
7. I need to find a way to eat that makes me feel spiritually and physically good. This new way of eating will lead to weight loss by default, but it will also transform me on every level.
8. Support is 100% necessary for me. It needs to be non-judgemental and nurturing. I do well with 12 step recovery programs, so I am back in OA and have a wonderful new sponsor. I also will reach out for support online and through the vegan and Buddhist communities. If I need to, I will consult dietitians/nutritionists and therapists as well.
9. My workout programs need to be less punishing. I no longer have a desire to feel like I have been run over by a fleet of mack trucks on the day after I work out. I also don't want a workout this is so non-challenging that I feel like I just took a nap. I need a program that will develop a sense of ease and comfort in my own skin...something functional. I also need a hell of a lot of work on my flexibility and alignment. And my feet and ankles are still all jacked up, so whatever I choose needs to not hurt them in any way.
10. All of this can change at any moment. I reserve the right to continually revise my own "rules". I don't have to live by a rigid set of restrictions imposed upon me by the diet police, the vegan police or anyone else. I don't have to drive myself crazy with perfectionism or restriction.

Whew. That turned into quite the manifesto.

Anyway, I feel like I have reached a turning point and I am excited, thrilled and curious as to what the future will bring.

Off to work out---I am trying Turbulence Training and Baron Baptiste's 40 day yoga program right now. Might start logging my workouts and food now that I have a computer at home again.

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