100 Days of Eating Clean – Week 12

Happy-Man-Eating-Bowl-Of-Fruits_smallerWeek 12 means that I’ve been at this for about 3 months now. The biggest thing that’s surprised me, that I’m kind of just realizing as I write this, is that I am more in the groove with clean eating than ever. Why is that a surprise?  Because it’s not like this is my first 12 weeks and I’m just trying this out. I’ve been on the clean eating path for years. Making the effort to specifically focus on this has made a difference.

Clean eating has been an important part of my life for a long time, but making it into a project like this shifted my perspective a little and changed my mental approach to it. It’s these little shifts over time that make a difference. There are people out there who experience things like this as more of a flip of a switch. One day they’re eating cheesy poofs in front of the boob tube…the next day they’re doing P90X and snacking on Greek yogurt and fresh berries and they never look back. I’ve always wished I was one of those people. But I think those folks are pretty rare.

Most of us will see an evolution of our fitness journey over time. My own evolution has been slow, but as I look back I can see how dramatically different I am from just a few years ago. If nothing else the fitness journey is about the long haul. You never get it done because it’s not a goal or a destination…it’s a life style.

This brings me to topic that’s been on my mind lately. I posted about it on my Facebook page earlier this week and got some great responses. I’d been hearing some comments about what it means to live a fitness life style. The things I was hearing expressed an attitude/belief that people think that living fit and losing weight means a miserable existence, giving up all the food and drink you love, deprivation and a forfeiting of life’s pleasures.

I admit, taking care of your health and fitness is not always easy. It takes commitment, consistency and yes even some sacrifice. But the rewards are invaluable and it certainly doesn’t mean a pleasure free life!

The biggest thing I take issue with is that this attitude implies that the only ways to enjoy yourself are to drink booze and eat junk. If those are the only (or the main) ways you get pleasure in life, then yes, fitness would seem pretty awful. But if those are your primary pleasures in life, maybe you should consider broadening your horizons. There’s so much more in the world to enjoy…things that support your well-being instead of  undermine it.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Does the fitness life style seem like a life of deprivation? Do you find that there are a lot of people in your life who feel that way? Are you a fitness minded person who’s found healthy pleasures (instead of guilty ones!)?

 

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2 Responses

  1. Matt says:

    Hi Laura,

    Like you, I started taking better care of myself years ago and you are 100% right, the more you do it the more it becomes second nature. Now, when I go out, I automatically order things that I know my body wants and that will leave me feeling good after I eat them. As you correctly said, it isn’t a hardship at all! I make the choices that make me feel good and then I FULLY enjoy the things that I do. I fully realize this winds up sounding “preachy” but it truly isn’t. Once you get “in the groove” of doing things that your body likes it is easy to stay with it.

    Keep up the great work.

    -Matt

    • Laura says:

      Thanks Matt! I have to say your comment didn’t strike me as preachy… just as another person who can attest to the fact that taking care of yourself can actually be an enjoyable and satisfying way to live. 🙂

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