Just a little message..

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It’s been way too long since I’ve written you a love note! So, may I just say..

It’s all going to be okay. (whatever “it” is.)

The clouds will pass with time. Darkness always fades to light.

And laughter is waiting just around the corner.

You are enough.

Your life is a masterpiece.

You are beautiful, especially all the messy parts.

We are human, we are one.

Just a little message from a girl with a pen in her hand and a song in her soul..

I love you.

❀ Brittany

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Confessions of a “Foodaholic” (Part 2)

Hello friend! Thanks for stopping by!

This post is the second part to an earlier post last week. If you’ve not read it yet, I highly encourage you to start here πŸ™‚


Photo Credit: http://www.independent.co.uk/
Photo Credit: http://www.independent.co.uk/

So without further ado, I’ll continue on.. πŸ™‚


So you know how I told you that I’m a highly emotional person as well as an emotional eater?

Well, you may be able to see the point I’m trying to get across then:
These are 2 ingredients in a recipe for disaster!

Not to mention their potential to cause some major problems for me in my daily life. (Especially if I’m caught unaware of the behavior to begin with.)

So basically, any time that I feel an emotion whether:

  • Happy. πŸ™‚
  • Sad. 😦
  • EXCITED! πŸ˜€
  • Frustrated :-/
  • BORED πŸ˜›

I eat.

It’s not always unhealthy foods either, it’s just too much food.

So that’s THE BIG SECRET. My personal truth.

And I’m a health coach.

But I won’t hide it. I struggle too. And we’re all in this struggle together, you know.

It makes me feel better to think of it that way at least.

And I’ll tell you another thing – Sometimes I just own it. Like, I’ll be eating because I’m really nervous about something, and I’ll notice that I’m eating emotionally..

And then I keep doing it anyway.

But then I eventually stop. And my stomach will hurt.

That generally keeps me from doing it again for a long time.

Until the next time.

But I keep getting better.

In fact, I’ve learned a few tricks, rules, laws, principles, (whatever you want to call them) of eating that I’d love to share with you today.

These tiny adjustments in the way that I eat and think about food help me not only to notice when I start eating emotionally, but also to stop immediately (when I want to, of course.) πŸ˜‰

Sometimes I still fail.

But that’s okay.

It’s a process.

And there’s no use beating myself up over it either.


So here they are:

BRITTANY’S 10 RULES FOR EATING:

#1. Eat when hungry.

#2. Stop eating when satisfied. (Not bloated, but not hungry anymore either.)

#3. Before I take a bite of food, I ask myself: “Am I eating because I feel a hunger pain in my body?” If the answer is no, I PUT THE FOOD DOWN IMMEDIATELY AND BACK UP REAL SLOWLY.

#4. Use smaller serving dishes for meals.

#5. ALWAYS put food on a serving dish. Then only eat the serving I put on the plate.

#6. Never “snack” out of the pots and pans on the stove. (Overeating is inevitable at that point.)

#7. DON’T buy snack foods I don’t want to snack on when I’m at home, alone, weak & emotional.

#8. When I bake cookies, place the “extras” OUT OF SIGHT. I will eat them all if I see them. (I’ve got some severe sweet tooth problems, my friends!)

#9. When I notice I’m eating emotionally, drink water and go outside. Breathe fresh air, and think of all the things I’m grateful for.

#10. NEVER BEAT YOURSELF UP! It only makes things worse. I accept that I didn’t do my best, and I make a vow to do better next time.


So those are some little pieces of advice that help me to keep moving forward towards my goal of living a more health-filled life.


Some other nice things to think about..

ALWAYS REMEMBER: You are NOT alone.

Any problem, sad emotion, or upset feeling you ever get? Someone has been there before. Or is there now.

You will be okay.

Nothing lasts forever, including painful experiences.

Allow yourself to FEEL.

(Just don’t go and eat your whole kitchen because of your feelings. Not worth it.)

And remember that I love you. ❀


Now go take some much needed time to yourself πŸ™‚

Meditate.

Breathe deeply.

Think about every thing you have to be grateful for.

Smile.

Be grateful.

Love yourself.

Give to others.

Remember that you are absolutely and 100% beautiful.

With the most love and gratitude a heart can hold,
❀ Brittany


Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment or ask questions below. Reach out if you need help! Let me know what comes up for you while reading this. I’d love to hear from you πŸ™‚

“Now go feel alive! And don’t forget to LIVE WITH PASSION!”

How to Get Started (How I got started on my health journey)

Hi friend,

Today’s post isn’t about how my way is the only way. Or the “right” way. I won’t even tell you it’s the best way. No, today’s post will be bringing you insight to how I found my personal freedom in food and possible ways for you to find yours. These are the changes I made to create lasting and ongoing health for myself, and I’d be more than happy to share them with you! So without further ado:

    How I got started on my journey to vibrant health

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1. I quit processed food.

Nearly everything that comes in a box, a can, or a package is a processed food. And the processed foods I’ll be talking about more specifically, are the ones with ingredient lists a mile long. (I exaggerate a bit, but there are some crazy big lists out there friends, take a look for yourself!)

The main reason I avoid processed foods is because they aren’t nutrient-dense foods. Nutrient dense foods will be higher in nutrients, and relatively lower in calories (eg: “foods containing vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, lean protein, healthy fats.” –NIH Senior Health) .

If a packaged food item has well over 10-15 ingredients, and you can’t pronounce most of them, it’s safe to say that it most likely isn’t the best thing to put in your body.

Processed foods contain really high amounts of sodium, sugar and fat, all which contribute to the calorie content. They’re also low in vitamins & nutrients, and high in calories. So avoiding them can only be better for your health in the long run.

I try and shop for ~90% of my food on the ailes near the outer perimeter of the grocery store. This is where the fresh veggies and fruits are going to be stored, and your dairy-free milks will be located too.

I do shop on the inner aisles of the store, but only to buy bags of beans, rice, spices, (and the occasional dark chocolate bars. πŸ˜‰ ) Now sometimes I will peruse down the chip aisle looking for “healthier chips,” but I can’t allow myself to get too comfortable on that aisle, or else I get cravings. I start losing focus on my goals. That’s when I just walk away. Very quickly.

I used to eat a lot of the pre-made frozen meals and boxed “Just add water!” meals, but they tend to have WAY more sodium than I would ever DREAM of putting in my own food at home, so I just don’t go there anymore. It’s a convenient way to get food, but I’d rather cook a bulk pot of stew, rice & beans, or soup and have my convenient left-overs throughout the week πŸ™‚

If I ever do buy something, I make sure it’s an organic, low-sodium, low-sugar or unsweetened, plant-based item. These days, I mainly just prepare all of my food at home. I tend to trust myself more than a restaurant, or processing plant for the food I put into my body.

2. I quit eating animal products.

This includes animal by products, too. I stopped eating meat, cheese, cow’s milk, eggs, butter, honey, gelatin, and any processed foods containing these items. I replaced meat with beans, seeds, nuts, nut-butters, and meat alternatives like tempeh and tofu. And replaced cheese with nutritional yeast, and nut-cheeses. I replaced cow’s milk with a variety of plant-based milks like almond milk, coconut milk, soy milk and flax milk.

There are so many alternatives out there today that it’s almost too easy to make the switch from conventional animal products to cleaner, plant-based ones. And keep in mind, just because I quit eggs and milk, doesn’t mean I “miss out” on all my favorite treats! I still eat pancakes, muffins, brownies, ice cream, and biscuits & gravy. I just create them differently. And I feel much better for it too.

3. I incorporated cleaner foods into my lifestyle.

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And by clean foods, I mean simple, whole foods. More foods in their most natural state. Raw fruits and vegetables. Raw and sprouted nuts and seeds and grains. Raw fats and oils like extra-virgin coconut & olive oils, avocados, and fresh coconut meat or dried coconut. Homemade dressings, instead of highly processed, store-bought ones.

I’ve been through stages where I’ll avoid high-fat foods at all costs, because those foods have a lot more calories than other foods. But the truth is this: We all need fats in our diets. Period. And the best way to get those are through whole fats, in their natural state–uncooked, unheated. The way you know if an oil, for instance, is in it’s natural state is the label will generally have on it somewhere: “cold-pressed,” “raw,” or “extra-virgin.”

4. I learned that willpower is EVERYTHING.

It’s all in my head. In order for me to make true change a reality in my life, I realized that I must really decide, deep down, that this change is TRULY what I want. Not something that I’m being forced to do against my will. And know that it will benefit me in the end.

Change is uncomfortable. Habits are habits for a reason, we find comfort in them. For me, when I decide to bring change into my life, the ONLY way I stick with that change and achieve my goals is to keep track of what my goals even ARE. My vision.

Then, from there, each decision I make I ask myself questions like: “Is this action or decision in line with my goals? Is this action or decision helping me to get closer to my goals?”

If the answer is no, I just don’t do it. (Now this is the idea, but I’ve failed plenty at this step. I’m not perfect either!) But even when I want to do something, like really want to, and I know deep down it will not bring me closer to my goals, I have to stop myself. Sometimes tell myself out loud “NO.”

Then make a different choice. A better choice.

And keep in mind that it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. There will be those moments when you want to eat just one bite of that chocolate cake. Or greasy pizza. Or that french fry. There will be temptation. There will be others trying to get you to break your promises to yourself, & sabotage your goals. And your progress.

This is when a little determination comes in handy!

Just knowing these truths at the very beginning of your journey, will make you more prepared for it. You’ll have more lasting success by realizing up front that it will not be easy. It will take effort. It will take will-power. With knowledge, you gain power. You’re prepared for battle. You’re personal battle to achieve greatness.

And for me, it was a battle. A battle for my life! To take it back.


So that’s the basic recipe for my successes so far.

Now, I didn’t just magically make all these changes overnight. This was no “magical experience.” This wasn’t effortless on my part. I didn’t “have it easy because of X, Y, and Z.” It was a process.

A process over 2 years, (now 4 years) of constantly refining my diet. Checking in to my body and it’s signals. Taking notice when certain foods made me feel great and when certain foods made me feel terrible.

Reaching my health goals took (and still takes to this day): persistence, dedication, vision on the long-term goal, mindfulness, and purposeful action.

There’s more that has contributed to my success so far than just the food aspect of it, but I’ll get to that in another post. πŸ™‚

The food changes have been, by far, the biggest factors in my overall success. I wanted to share this information with you first, so that you might be able to gain insight and inspiration through my story and to begin your own personal success journey starting right now!


So go on and do it already! Make the changes you’ve wanted for so long.

Tell yourself “I CAN.” And believe it.

And please, let me know when you’re struggling with something. I’ll help talk you through whatever comes up for you in your journey. Let me walk with you.

I love you.

With gratitude and love,
❀ Brittany

There’s no better time than now to get started, contact me and tell me how I can help you!

Benefits of Change (why I keep going)

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Change is uncomfortable. I don’t like it. Being uncomfortable? Forget it. If I have a choice between pain and comfort, I will instinctually choose comfort over pain any day. It’s in my nature. It’s in all our nature.

But sometimes the pain of staying the same actually outweighs the pain of change. It is only until the pain of change outweighs the pain of staying the same that I make the choice to change (go through pain, be uncomfortable.) Because at that moment, I know –deep down– that I will see immediate and positive benefits in my life by doing so.

Here’s how my life has completely transformed since I made the decision to invite positive change into my life:

1. Weight Loss & Weight Stability

I lost over 60 pounds of unwanted fat over the course of 2 years. The first 20 pounds being in the first few months! I was pumped. I not only felt more amazing on the inside, but felt better about my appearance on the outside. I had more energy, and could fit into my clothes. I was a new person.

Now my weight is stable. (Well, apart from my random binges on chocolate, rice chips, or blueberry muffins!) I’m not perfect. I’m human. I still struggle with choosing healthy food over comfort junk food more than I’d like to admit. But for the most part, I’m to the point where I can recognize when my overconsumption on less clean foods is getting out of hand, and make the conscious decision to eat less of them. This is how I keep on track. It’s a constant struggle, but it’s worth it.

2. Skin Transformation

I used to have the worst acne. My cheeks, chin, forehead, (even my eyebrows!) had bumps and blemishes. They would be the deep, painful, blistery ones too. They hurt. They pained me when I looked in the mirror. I felt ugly. And I was uncomfortable! I would just sit and cry, asking “Why me?” ALL THE TIME.

I’m pretty sure I became ugly to others too, stemming from all my self-hate and pain that I was feeling and believing about myself on the inside. What you believe about yourself truly shows on the outside. Start believing positive and empowering thoughts about yourself and you’ll change your life. Don’t take my word for it, try it for yourself. πŸ™‚

Now, my skin is clear. I still get the occasional blemish or two around ‘that time of the month,’ or if I eat too much chocolate, (I just freaking love chocolate!) But never again have I had the excessive problem with my skin since I changed what I put in and on my body.

3. Mind Reparation

I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression since I can remember. As a young child, I would be so extremely terrified to go to school that I would cry every morning. My mom would have to feed me Mylanta, a medicine to calm the stomach, most mornings because my anxiety was that bad. I don’t know what I feared so much, but I just knew I feared something.

My depression started when I was 17. This is when I fell in love for the first time. Boys break hearts, and I got mine broken plenty. I didn’t know who I was or what my values were. I was in a constant search for approval. I started eating emotionally. I became a binge eater. I’d literally eat almost an entire 1/2 gallon container of ice cream in one sitting. Then I’d throw it up and eat more. I was a sad person. I was a scared person. I was confused and lonely and looking for answers. I was put on anti-depressants to help. And they did. Sometimes. I needed to change something at the root of the problem.

I now can say that I’m free from that anxiety. I’m free from that depression. Although I still struggle with both from time to time in an effort to be perfect, to not make mistakes, and to be better than everyone else. But when I’m real with myself, and feed myself empowering thoughts and life-giving food, I become balanced. My mind is repaired. It is in balance once again. And how freeing that feels!

4. Saving Animals & Compassion

I’ve always loved animals. Not just enjoyed or liked animals, but LOVED animals. Like, animals feed my soul kind of love. I’ve always felt very connected with them in some way. I see a part of me in them. The part of me that is scared, timid, territorial, kind, full of unconditional love.

But I never put two and two together. I ate meat and thought nothing of it. I consumed dairy products without thinking about how they got from the animal to the grocery store shelves.

I was asked once by Nathan, my once friend now husband-

Nathan: “So, do you like animals?”

Me: “Yes! I LOOOOVVVVE animals!!”

Nathan: “Oh, so are you a vegetarian?”

Me: “(blank look) Uhh..no. (*feelings of guilt)”

He didn’t mean to make me feel that way, it was just a logical thought pattern. If I truly loved and cared about animals, why would I kill them (pay others kill them for me) and eat them? Valid question. It would make logical sense that I would be vegetarian since I LOOOOOVED animals so much.

I look back and laugh. I did NOT change that day. In fact, I didn’t change until over 2 YEARS after that. I believed I couldn’t quit meat. It was my main source of food. My thoughts went something like this: “Why would I become vegetarian? That would be ridiculous!”

That was me then. Oh how the times have changed. How my life has changed. I keep going on my clean eating journey because I can now eat with a clear conscience. My dinner plate is full of compassion. It makes me feel good that I can save animals. Save the planet. All from the food choices I make each day.

I feel that now that I don’t eat animals, nor their by-products, I am now proving my word. Proving what I believe in. Doing what I believe in. Serving a higher purpose. Feeling good about where my food comes from and how it got to my plate. No animals harmed. And that’s the way I like it. ❀

5. Lasting energy

Now that I eat clean, I have the lasting energy I need to get through the day, even that 2:00pm slump! (and it’s not with the help from my old favorite energy drinks.) No. It doesn’t stem from the wings from RedBull or the “heart attack waiting to happen” from Redline. It’s honestly all from the food I fuel my body with.

I believe that if we stop looking at food as our friend, and start looking at food as our source of fuel to get us from Point A to Point B, we would have a completely changed perspective and a different motivation/drive in the foods we choose to eat.

I still have a problem with eating emotionally. I have ever since I was a teenager. I also just REALLY LOVE FOOD so I’ll keep eating when food tastes really good. I’ve gotten better at this, but still struggle with portion sizes. I’ve found my own tricks that work for me. For instance, sometimes I literally just have to walk out of the kitchen because I lack the self-control to stop eating. It’s crazy!

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Now I’m not saying that all of these exact benefits will happen for everyone if they make the same lifestyle changes I did. This is just my personal experience. My story. This is what happened when I started eating clean. When I stopped telling myself that I can’t, and replaced those warped thoughts that don’t serve me with the belief that I can.

Our minds are more powerful than we think. Try turning around some of your disempowering thoughts and feed your mind positivity and empowerment. Just try it out for yourself and let me know how it goes!

I’ve healed myself & found freedom in food. Join me today on your journey to vibrant and transformational health. Make a few changes in your day, and see how much your life could change and improve starting now!

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Thank you so much for reading!

I am so grateful for you. I love you so much!

Remember: I’m here for you. If anything I mentioned in this post resonates with you, let me know! Share in the comments what comes up for you when reading this, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

And as always, feel free to contact me. I can help you. Let’s set up a 15 minute call and get you started on your journey to true health and vibrancy.

With as much gratefulness a heart can hold,
❀ Brittany

Determination

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If you want real change-to be healthy, fit, & vibrant- you’ve got to want it bad enough that you’ll do ANYTHING for it!

If you really want vibrant health, you gotta start quitting. (Quitting’s not all bad, you know!) We’re taught all our lives that quitting is a terrible thing. Well, I’m here to tell you..it’s not. I’m here telling you to do the exact opposite. πŸ™‚

Here’s what I mean ==>

If you want to feel amazing, if you want to feel alive, here’s what you’ll do:

You’ll quitΒ your favorite sodas. You’ll quit your french fries and ice cream. You’ll quit your fried meats. You’ll quit your negative self-talk. You’ll quit your emotional eating patterns. You’ll quit lying to yourself that you’ll get healthy “later.” You’ll quit telling yourself “I can’t.”

Because you can! Being healthy is an everyday choice, stemming from actions you take every moment. Create your reality. Make your dreams come true. Start making healthier decisions, and you’ll be on your way to lasting SUCCESS!

But it all starts by quitting. πŸ˜‰

Peace & Love & Freedom in food,
❀ Brittany

UPDATE 2015-08-31: Oh! And one other thing…REPLACE what you quit with something positive! That is the 2nd most important part.

So, If you quit sugary foods, when you want that sugary food, replace it with water. Or an affirmation like “This craving will NOT beat me! I am strong. I can do this!”

Drink a hot tea. Go for a walk. Do 5 pushups every time you get the craving for something you’ve vowed to quit.

Whatever works for you, just DO IT! No more excuses, you got this. πŸ™‚