The ups and downs of maintaining a healthy weight and more importantly a healthy self image. In my memory, I don’t ever remember being called too skinny. I was always, fine enough. I don’t ever remember being told that I was a picky eater. I always had a healthy enough body image. I was a tomboy for most of childhood even up to college. I would rather play sports with the boys than sit inside and hang with the girls. I wore mens’ shirts, everything fit loosely up until college. Eventually, I dressed like a girl. I guess, in this day and age, it means to wear clothes that accentuate your “girliness” . I think that’s when my unhealthy body image began to emerge. A muffin top that was invisible before was now visible. But I never gave a thought to my nutrition or health, I just victimized myself with my body image, like most girls do. Maybe that’s part of the problem. One needs to own the solution to the problem and not victimize themselves over it. Since college, I’ve been married and had two kids and my weight has fluctuated from fine enough to feeling extremely sick to my stomach when I would see photos of myself…still doing nothing about it.
In 2009, I was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. You lose so much weight and I WAS TOO SKINNY for the fist time in my life. I would’ve just enjoyed but it’s not just weight loss, it’s rapid heart rate and bulging eyes. I had to take medicine that would get my weight bouncing up and down for a few years until I was in remission. I chose not to remove my thyroid or do any other invasive treatments.
In 2014, I was approached by a colleague to try beachbody programs. I heard about P90X and Insanity Max 30 from my cousins but never realized that they were beachbody programs. She told me to try T25, and I knew I could not handle it. I was so NOT FIT for any exercise. I started with 21 day fix and started portion control with the containers. I was huffing and puffing during the warm up and barely able to walk after the first lower body workout. Since, then, I have lost over 20 lbs. I never thought I had 20 lbs to lose. I have done max 30 and many other advanced programs since then. I TOOK CONTROL of my body image for the first time in my life. Since then, I have gained 5-6 lbs. but I am not afraid of it, because I now know how to target it. Besides a sense of control I have gained a group of women in my life that I CAN TRULY rely on. Many of them I only see virtually but some are my colleagues at work. It’s a true sense of sisterhood that is unique unto itself. Being nomadic for most of my life and not having a true hometown, I’ve never been able to experience, “my high school friends or my college buddies”. This is my first experience. There is something to a shared journey of body image, nutrition, life’s ups and downs. We celebrate our successes and motivate through our stumbles.
Now, I understand how my body responds to foods. I know how food nourishes BODY and MIND. I still enjoy dinners out and a cocktail here and there, but I am smart about what I eat. I am committed to staying active whenever possible through these beachbody programs. My favorite quick thing that I make now for breakfast is overnight oats. It tastes likes the yummiest pudding AND is healthy. I am a teacher and once, my students talked about not having time for breakfast and I made overnight oats for two students. I put them in mason jars and hand delivered to their classrooms. They loved it. I impart my love of learning to my students and sometimes I impart my love of cooking and nutrition too.
Starting beachbody has helped me helped my daughters understand what a healthy body image is. They understand how nutrition works. They understand a healthy balance. Here’s a recipe for overnight oats that I have made. Add fruits if you want, change maple syrup to honey or agave if you want. I like the smokiness of maple syrup though. Add more milk for a loose porridge texture. Make it savory by not adding sweet, but avocado or nuts. Make it your own! This takes 5 minutes and you can make for 2 days ahead and leave in fridge. If you make more than one serving, it’s best to make servings separately to ensure each serving gets equal amounts of ingredients. It’s so easy, that my kids make it too. One loves it, the other not so much… but that’s life.
OVERLOAD ALMOND OVERNIGHT OATS( 1 serving)
- 1/2 cup oats( rolled or steel cut)
- 1/2 cup almond milk or cashew milk or whole milk
- 3/4 tbsp.. chia seeds
- 2 tbsp. almond butter or peanut butter or other of your choice
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- cute mason jar( no less than 8 oz.) , you could use Tupperware or ramekins
- Optional- fruits, nuts, flax seeds
- Place into mason jar in the order listed of ingredients. Stir well. Leave in fridge overnight.
- ENJOY THE NEXT MORNING.
- Add coconut flakes or fruits…all optional.
- There are fun ways to top…