Tuesday, September 6, 2011

CHALLENGE: Eat More Vegetables

I am not sure it is because summer is officially over that I have a renewed sense of motivation (you would think it would be the opposite, however I tend to blow off many of the things that I care about in order to spend as much time at the beach as possible). There are some major shifts happening in my life right now. In a nutshell: I came to the realization that my job (managing the marketing and operations for a few small businesses & graphic design on the side) does not interest me half as much as my hobby (learning how to prevent cancer), I started making fruit and vegetable smoothies every morning, I signed up for a year long program to get certified as a health coach, and I started writing this blog to force myself to generate content for my book and refine my ideas.

I tend to do this every so often (which my boyfriend is just learning- I think I scared him). I get sick of what I am doing and move on to something else. I graduated grad school four years ago and this will be my 4th "transition" into a different field. Well, I am not sure if this is going to be a phase (I hope not!) but judging by my motivation to learn and practice what I am preaching... I want to make this my career. I never really felt the need to help people- until Nani got sick. I never wanted to be a teacher (in the traditional sense) and, as little Lauren and my boyfriend witnessed, I am not a natural. I got frustrated trying to teach him how to use the cappuccino machine- there is one knob that has 2 settings. I became borderline angry to say the least. 

Lucky for me I can write!

Back to the topic at hand...eating more fruits and vegetables. In all of my reading and video watching, fruits and more so vegetables seem to be the cornerstone of cancer prevention. I just watched an interview earlier of Cherie Calbom, who earned a Master of Nutrition degree at Bastyr University, has practiced as a clinical nutritionist and a celebrity nutritionist, as well as written 17 books on nutrition and juicing. 

If you have about an hour to spare, this interview is a great introduction as to why it is so important to eat a variety of vegetables. My interest (obsession as my boyfriend would call it) started after reconnecting with a high school classmate (and holistic nutritionist- link to her blog Healthier You) a few weeks ago, who happens to eat 100% raw and has for five years. She told me of the amazing positive effects she witnessed in herself after trying a raw diet. The changes were so positive for her that she never went back to eating cooked food. This intrigued me to say the least. 

So I started making fruit smoothies with a handful of dark green leafy veggies, every day for the past week and a half now. I did a smoothie cleanse for the first day and a half, at which point I was so hungry and in need to chew something, that I broke down (I ate homemade hummus and organic corn chips not McDonald's). I apparently underestimated how much smoothie I would actually need to eat to sustain it, but I continued to make and drink an entire blender full of fruit and veggie smoothie a day. 

Let me backtrack and explain my motivation. These are the problems that I have that I think are diet related and can be eliminated by increasing the raw component in my diet (WARNING- I do not get embarrassed by talking about "gross" or "female" things):

  • acne
  • not able to loose weight (more explicitly fat) and keep it off
  • grey hairs
  • dark, thick, stubbly facial hair (omg)
  • dry skin
  • skin rashes
  • addicted to ChapStick 
  • allergies
  • irregular bowel movements (sometimes)
  • yeast infections
  • UTI's
  • horrendous periods
  • chronic fatigue
  • bad distance vision
I think that sums it up (an I am 28 and considered "healthy"?)!

I have read and heard about so many stories of people changing their lives dramatically by increasing the amount of raw foods they eat...SO...I am going to challenge myself. And I figure the best way to keep me on track is to publicly announce it. My goal is to drink green smoothies for breakfast and lunch for one month, with a healthy dinner of whatever I feel like eating. Now I have already been smoothie-ing for almost 2 weeks and I feel pretty good, however they have been mostly fruit based. I am going to venture into the land of vegetable based smoothies. 

I will do this from Friday, September 9th through my 29th birthday...October 9th- I need a few days to prepare for this venture (mentally and logistically). I will journal everyday about how I feel, what smoothies I drink and what foods I eat, the workouts I did, and will probably give a weekly recap of any changes (positive or negative). I am fortunate enough to exchange my website skills for my personal trainer's work out skills so I will have weekly documentation about my weight, hydration, body fat and muscle composition as I progress with my smoothie skills. I usually work out 1-2 hours a day, 2-4 times a week so I will be keeping that up. I have my previous weigh-ins documented so I will be able to compare this experiment vs. my usual on-and-off healthy diet. 

Now I'm sure I am going to get the usual "what the hell are you doing?" from certain people in my life. "You are just going to drink smoothies?" "You aren't eating enough protein!" "Just don't go to extremes." But the truth of the matter is, I am just going to (try to) keep my mouth shut, keep my head high, and see for myself whether this is all it's cracked up to be. I need to live it before I can preach it. 

Now I have a use for the abundance of dark green leafy vegetables I picked out of my garden (the spinach didn't do so well hence the bag of Dole) 
Wish me luck!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...