Thankful from the bottom of my stomach

Do you ever feel like your life is MISSING something if you or someone you know can’t eat conventional foods?

Do you feel like other people are UNHAPPY in their lives if they don’t eat the way most people seem to?

Do you feel like something is LACKING, if you’ve ever been prescribed a way of eating that is supposed to help your body to heal?

Do you ever look at anyone with “dietary requirements” and feel a little DISGRUNTLED?

You can admit it if you do, it’s okay…

While I try not to make a fuss of it, I often get some side-glances when people find out I eat a largely gluten-, dairy-, refined-sugar free way – without apples, onions, garlic and other high “fodmaps” (Google it)!

But before you freak, I’ll let you in on a little secret…

I am not missing a thing.

In 2014, I experienced more severe symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I’ll spare you the details, except to say, I was enraged.

I felt betrayed by my body and I couldn’t understand what was going on! For years I had eaten what I wanted without (m)any repercussions and I thought my eating habits were up to scratch but everything I ate felt like junk… including foods you wouldn’t normally expect – like apples and onions… when “an apple a day keeps the doctor away…” #notsomuch

That’s when I started working with Lily Nichols, RDN.

Lily helped to uncover a whole new world for me…

She helped me work out the foods that were likely causing inflammation in my body; she helped clarify my mental battles and work out a way of eating that best suited MY body, and not what everyone else advised (which by the way is why you shouldn’t take ‘blanket’ diet advice).

Lily is one of the catalysts for helping me to learn to appreciate and be genuinely GRATEFUL for my body and food – as painful and inconvenient as it felt at the time – and she helped me to heal my body bit by bit.

You can read more about that here.

This journey is one of the reasons I get so excited about food.

I will never be completely free of IBS and I have to maintain a good attention to what’s in my food but I am lacking NOTHING at all.

3 reasons I am grateful to eat the way I do:

  1. I appreciate all the foods I have access to.

There’s an abundance of food and yet not everyone has access to it. I appreciate the beautiful foods we have.

We have such wonderful wisdom and education where I live to know what great food IS. I’m grateful we have people like Lily who clear up the garbage we are fed by conventional un-wisdom.

By paying attention to my food, I’ve learnt a new appreciation for our beautiful farmers and the complex world of food production and security.

I also learnt to cook, which I think my husband liked (even though he’s the better cook in our house!!)

  1. I rarely if ever crave junk food.

I DO NOT enjoy the way junk makes me feel and it feels AMAZING to not eat it. If someone offers me food I “can’t” or don’t want to eat, I don’t feel like I am lacking anything, as I always have a stash of food I CAN eat.

It’s too easy to get stuck in what we DON’T or CAN’T have…

But we have plenty.

To have that access is a gift.

I hope someday to share that with more people.

  1. Eating the way I do makes me feel NOURISHED, STRONG and SATIATED with a happy, happy belly.

That doesn’t mean I miss out on luxurious foods whatsoever.

It means I might not be “normal” but I never want to be anyway. I am happy to be different and be on a path that rocks my socks off.

I eat what I know my body enjoys.

One of the best parts of life is EATING FOOD!!

‘Getting to’ and ‘being able to’ eat nourishing foods, is a pathway to feeling FREEDOM, FLOW, HAPPINESS, and CONNECTION. It’s exciting.

I am so grateful for people like Freeman’s Fitness Training Studio – Hornsby and Lily Nichols, who opened me to a fabulous world of food. Thank you from the bottom of my stomach!!

✨ “Be content with what you have;
rejoice in the way things are.
When you realise there is nothing lacking,
the whole world belongs to you.”
– Lao Tzu ✨

Is it time you listened to your body and not the crowd?

Is it time you did a little more digging into the best way of eating for you?

Is it time to feel awesome about your body and your food!?

I am a Precision Nutrition coach but I am not a medical professional. What I write should not be taken as a substitute for medical advice. I recommend speaking with a trained nutritionist for more information.

Some good places to start:

Resources:

Mental Health LIFE: You Really Do Matter

October is Mental Health Month…

But for me, it’s every day.

We each wrangle fears, pain, suffering, sadness, stress, mental, and physical games, and our own demons…

It’s what makes us human.

Though that makes it no less painful, it’s given me hope at the times I’ve surprised myself with how far ‘down in the dumps’ I can go… where the lights are turned off.

I’m lucky that I’ve always had an inkling, that even there, there’s a way to make light or fire, even when I’ve lost the energy to create a solution. Maybe you’ve been there or ARE there now and I send my love to you.

There’s so much worth fighting for and I am grateful for every time I’ve been pulled out of that place…

Though I could never have done so alone.

When in that place, there’s nothing quite like an unwavering anchor – a support person, an organisation, nature, a counsellor, a reason to live, something to love, whatever it is – and each time I’ve gone to that place, I’m grateful for the anchor that’s helped me to regain my strength.

And I know I’m not unique in this.

Each day, many of us fight for the light within.

It’s not just for the empaths and feelers like myself, but every one of us in different ways.

At our most vulnerable, there’s a special few who step up and their kindness changes the world. Thanks to how they live, they inspire me. They’ve helped me and taught me so much through their care. If it’s you, thank you.

One of the special few is Daniel Freeman.

In my darkest moments – or even just nervous nelly dizziness – Daniel steps up, knows what to say to calm me, understands my psychology better than I do, and CARES deeply. It makes a difference and I am so grateful for him.

He’s helped me get through and wade through the mess…

He’s a bit of a legend.

On the flipside, I’ve learnt endless wisdom thanks to the journey with his own mental health that he shares in his first book, Fit for Life.

It means a lot to read those words on those pages…

Because every one of us is attached to someone who may be experiencing their own stress, anxiety or depression…

And I am grateful to those of us who give it a voice.

(Plug: http://www.freemansfitness.com.au/fitforlife)

I want to say it’s taken guts to share what he has – and though I’m deeply proud of it, I don’t want you to ever feel as though you have to be courageous or brave to speak up or seek help if you are feeling vulnerable or don’t know where to look. You may feel like all hope is lost… that there’s no courageous or gutsy bone in your body.

And in that case, I hope simply to shine a new light…

Perhaps on what IS beautiful in this world.

Or what is beautiful in YOU…

I see how many of us fight in the silence…

And that’s why I write this.

If you are in the shadows, please know you matter.

It sounds vague, meaningless even, but listen, or I will.

You really do, matter.

You might be weird and wonderful in ways others don’t seem to understand but that’s okay.

You’re not alone.

We live in a truly weird and whacky place. While human psychology and life endlessly inspires, fascinates and causes deep child-like wonder and awe in me, it also baffles and devastates me. There’s plenty of things out of balance in this world, but that’s why we need sensitive and caring souls who want things to be better, who know, who have the creative minds to contribute and inspire this place.

I am grateful for all the people who’ve ever pushed through their own demons to show us all what is possible.

The world would be far poorer had we always listened to the poison parrots on our shoulders.

I hope you’ll hear me when I say, let’s ride this together.

I am here to fight with you.

Being alive, as cliche as it may sound, is a wonder.

I hope to share that with you much longer.

None of us are immune to fear or darkness.

I wrangle my beast and settle it often, by living my life the way I do – hiking, weight training, writing, et cetera – and I am grateful for the angels who – by stepping into their power – walk this earth and remind me just how beautiful life is, in all its dichotomies, especially when I lose my way.

If it helps…

Remember…

I have two ears to listen,
And two eyes to see,
That your life matters, and
You’ve got plenty reason to be.

Keep trying to light the fire in the darkness…
Share with someone who’s lost their power…

Reach out.

Together, we power up.

Stay with you, stay with me.

What is your reason for keeping fit?

On the way up the hill from Berowra towards Cowan yesterday, I remembered a moment about 5 years ago, when I said to myself, “I will never be this unfit again.” What prompted it?

I was out with my fire brigade and we were completing a navigation exercise on the same hill we walked yesterday. My fit colleagues were bolting up the hill and I was lagging behind, feeling completely and utterly exhausted. Sure I have short legs, but it was a physical and mental incapacity that I couldn’t stand.

It was a feeling I truly despised, but such great motivation…

I imagined how this would play out in a real-life emergency. Would it be okay for me to be this unfit? No way…

It wouldn’t just be incredibly hard for me in a situation like that – with fast action required – I would be letting my team down and that would be unacceptable and potentially life-threatening for us all.

Even though no one said anything, it was a lesson I’ll never forget!

It was a moment of motivation and awakening – and though I’m still no mountain lion, I am grateful for every opportunity to stay fit and reminders of how important it is for me, but also people around me.

It’s my feeling that one of the best ways we can care for others is to care for our fitness and maintain it at the highest level we can…

That doesn’t mean someone else’s highest level, but our own.

I will never be as fit or fast as others, but I can improve my fitness and hopefully be in the best state I can be to carry out my life in service.

I am grateful for the fire brigade and the fit and strong leaders who, without even knowing, taught me many reasons to stay fit – and helped prompt me into the life-changing action of maintaining my fitness!

 

 

Would you like to be fit as a fiddle to fight fires with determination and strength?

BUY FIT FOR LIFE NOW.