I love food. I do not believe in deprivation or starving yourself. My food philosophy is all about moderation and eating good, whole foods that taste great and are good for your body. The term “diet” bugs me to no end, especially the crash diets that cut out or limit one food group or another. Your body needs carbohydrates and fats to function properly; there is no need to be scared of them but for many years, I was. I have never been overweight but I struggled with my body image and was convinced that I needed to lose weight. I went on diet after diet, eating nothing but fruit and yogurt one day and surviving off of diet shakes another. Was I happy? Not at all. I was very unhappy and I was not healthy. Running and cooking saved me, as far as I am concerned. I found a passion for both but cooking came first. I found that I enjoyed it and I was actually really good at it! I poured my heart and soul into cooking and baking and developed a passion for it, especially baking cakes. Eventually, my goal is to make and sell custom wedding cakes.
I also started running in 2008 but it was not love at first run. It was HARD! Over time, once I began to see changes and see my endurance and physical fitness improve, I found my true love. I would happily bound out of bed in the mornings at 5:30A.M. to go for a run while others thought I was out of my mind. Reaching new personal records gave me the drive to want to do more and more and improve myself. But I also began to see the connection between what I ate and how I ran. When I gave my body the proper nutrients in the form of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, etc., cut out the “junk,” and limited refined sugar, I was absolutely amazed at how my endurance and fitness improved. Now I know that if I want my body to perform at it’s best ability, I have to be good to it, listen to it, and fuel it properly.
Now, I do not count calories; I know how much I should eat and I listen to my body and want it wants. I try to eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables, good fats, lean protein, and low fat dairy. I made a personal choice a long time ago to avoid red meat or pork but I do eat chicken (in moderation) and fish/seafood so I am not technically a vegetarian. I have a huge sweet tooth and I have “dessert” every day but it is not always something incredibly indulgent. Food should be enjoyed, it is not something that should cause stress and worry. I believe nutrition is important but most importantly, we should enjoy ourselves and eat what we enjoy!