The best advice I could give to anyone who wants to change their life would be to surround themselves with a positive group of people. I have made a conscious effort to distance myself from negative people and attach myself to positive ones. When I’m feeling discouraged or want to give up, these are the people I turn to and they help pick me back up.
First and foremost, my mom encourages me to live healthy and supports all of my endeavors. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her continued support. (Although she keeps a lot of junk in the house and temptations kill…..) She always asks me, “Should you reaaaaally be eating that!?” It’s that reassurance I need that she always provides!
Second, I believe it is truly a blessing to be able to share your love of health and fitness with someone. To be able to work towards leading a healthy lifestyle together. Finding someone who believes in you and supports your lifestyle is so incredibly important. A lot of what I have learned over the past 11 months came from Santo. Since we’ve started dating, he has enriched me with so much knowledge. He continuously supports my fitness journey and gives me the encouragement I’ve always needed. I will forever be grateful for his love and kindness.
Lastly, friends who share the same values as you are the exact kind of friends you need. Dominika and I started this blog because we have the same interests. She is the most positive and encouraging person and I am so grateful for our friendship. She’s given me so many tools to help me live a positive and productive life! Valene has been a constant support for me for 5 years. She reminds me that life is a blessing and that no matter what it throws at you, you can handle it. She helps give me the motivation I need to stick to my workouts and try new recipes! Smo makes sure I don’t eat “da bad sturf” and shares his knowledge with me about health and fitness related topics. I’ve learned so much from him in such a short amount of time!
Most of these people don’t realize the impact they’ve had on me. Most things they do may seem small, but to me, they are what keep me going. It’s the “I worked out this morning, when are you working out today?” The “Did you meal prep this week to help keep yourself on track?” It’s the “Okay, so you ate something bad. Tomorrow is a new day. One small set back isn’t going to derail all your progress.” These small things are what drive my motivation. I’m not just in this for myself, I’m in it for them too because although they support me, they have my endless support as well.
These kinds of people are those that you need to surround yourself with. Through everything you conquer in life, make sure that you have a few key people around you that support you endlessly. It’s their support that is going to keep you going.
Yesterday, in my Marketing Channels class, my professor explained to us that when dry goods get shipped from the production facility to the grocer, it usually takes about three months. THREE MONTHS. What on earth is in that food that makes it last so long? AND how on earth do those chemicals break down in your body when you consume them?
The consumer market is so deceiving that it’s very difficult to fully understand what exactly you are putting into your body. If chemicals are being put into goods to make them last longer, what affect are those chemicals going to have on your body? Before I heard my professor talk about this yesterday, I didn’t know how bad this actually was. I mean, I knew processed foods were bad for you but this reaaaaally put it into perspective.
Last semester, I also learned about green washing. Green washing is a term used to describe a process used by companies to advertise their goods as environmentally friendly when they aren’t. Because of this, I’ve only bought foods that show the following logos:
When goods have these logos on them, I can be assured that I am getting the quality food and nutrition my body needs. In addition to the above, I also opt for organic vegetables and fruit. I know the first thing that comes to your mind. Organic = cost. Although this is true, it’s worth it for the price you’ll have to pay in the long run after feeding your body with harmful chemicals.
What I’m trying to say is that you need to think about the food you’re putting into your body. Understand what goes into producing those goods. Look into how your body breaks down certain chemicals. I am not an expert and I have to look into these things too but being mindful and educating yourself is the first step.
If I could make any recommendation, it would be to buy local. Support your local economy and as a result, lead a healthier lifestyle.
Last night I made my first batch of overnight oats- carrot cake edition!
1/2 cup steel cut oats
3/4 cup almond milk
5 sliced almonds
1 cup chopped carrots
1 tbsp chia seeds
1/2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
- Combine all ingredients in a container that can be sealed and stir well.
- Refrigerate overnight.
- Enjoy hot or cold!
It doesn’t look the most appealing but once you try it, I promise you won’t be disappointed. I preferred mine warm because the flavours infused a little more! Have you made overnight oats before?
This past weekend I tried Santo’s mom’s chocolate zucchini bread and just HAD to get the recipe! Last week, my doctor informed me that I’m minorly lactose intolerant (whatever that means….) which made me super upset because cheese. BUT this loaf is completely dairy free and absolutely delicious! After posting a photo of the loaf on my Instagram earlier today, I said I would share the recipe and this is it!
1 cup oil
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup carrots, peeled and grated
1 cup zucchini, grated
3 cups sprouted buckwheat flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat eggs, oil, sugar and vanilla until creamy.
- Place grated carrots and zucchini in a clean dishtowel and squeeze out excess liquid. Stir into wet ingredients.
- In a separate medium bowl, stir together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, baking powder and ginger. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, stirring until just moistened.
- Spread evenly into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 50-60 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool completely.
I plan on making variations of the loaf in the future, making substitutions to see what works and what doesn’t! (ie. coconut sugar instead of white sugar) Having my knee injury has given me an opportunity to experiment more with food and that makes me super happy because I LOVE cooking and I also love to bake!
If you decide to make this recipe, and I highly encourage you to, please share a photo of your creation! Get creative with it and let your mind run wild!
(Bread always looks good, no matter the angle!!!)
You’re reading this blog which means you either have an interest in changing your life and living healthier OR you think you have nothing better to do. Either way, I’m hoping this post is going to give you the little kick you need.
When I tried to start BBG in 2015, I didn’t finish it. I asked myself repeatedly why I didn’t finish and couldn’t come to a conclusion until this year. I originally started it because others were doing it. I wanted to see results like others were receiving. When I didn’t, I gave up. This year I took a different approach. This time, I asked myself why I wanted to do the program and what I was hoping to get out of it. I realized that I wanted a fun way to incorporate exercise into my daily routine. When I started making myself a priority and focusing on the “why” of my actions, everything fell into place. In turn, I was able to commit fully to the program (and complete 3 rounds of it too!)
If you want to change your life, the first step is making a decision to do it for YOU. Do it for those jeans you’ve always wanted to fit into. Do it for the lifestyle you know you deserve. Do it for those days when you want to indulge in a cookie (or four!) Do it because YOU want to make a positive change in your life, not because you feel others expect you to. This is your life and you should live it in the best way possible.
Take some time today to think about where you want to go in life, why you want to go there, what you’re going to do to get there and how you’re going to do those things. Do you want to incorporate exercise into your daily routine? Do you want to learn how to make healthier food alternatives? Do you want to find happiness through a healthy life? Whatever it is you want, make sure YOU want it and that’s why you’re doing it. The why of everything you do is so important because that’s what will drive change.
At the end of the day, it’s YOU. You’re the person who’s going to be there for you 100% of the time. You’re the one who has to make the decision to change your life. YOU.
If you’re looking for guidance or you’re at a standstill, e-mail us. We can help you out the best that we can!
One recipe I love making when I’m ever in a rut is an oatmeal bowl! The best thing about this is that you can customize it to fill your interests. I’m a big sucker for bananas and peanut butter so this is my favourite!
I used to eat two cups of oatmeal before I started my fitness journey and now I can barely eat one. This is the perfect snack for those cold winter days when you’re laying around the house or if you are just looking for a new breakfast meal!
Here’s what I have included in my bowl:
- 1 cup dry oats
- 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk
- 1 banana
- 1 tbsp of peanut butter
- 1 tsp of chia seeds
- 1 tsp brown sugar
Instructions: Simply heat the oats and milk up in the microwave and add toppings as you wish!
Here is an image of another bowl I’ve made (can’t forget the bananas!)
UPDATE: I’ve learned that I LOVE almond butter way more than I love peanut butter.
What kind of oatmeal bowls have you made?
For as long as I can remember, food has been my safety blanket. It’s been the one thing that can make me happy after a stressful situation. It’s been my comfort. Over this past year, I’ve been working hard to heal the previous memories I have that lead me to food every time I am placed in a situation that leaves me feeling uneasy.
I can still remember coming home from school every day in high school and eating everything in sight because I got into a fight with one of my friends or because I did poorly on a test. I can still remember every argument with my parents where food was the only thing I could turn to. I can remember thinking that eating copious amounts of food when stressed was okay because that’s what everyone did. Right?
Wrong. I taught myself that binging on food was the norm. That it was healthy because it released small amounts of dopamine which made the stress leave. It only left temporarily. It was almost like some sort of drug… an addiction and habit I just couldn’t break.
Last April, I made a vow to change my life. I made the choice to eat healthier every chance I could. Most importantly, I never once told myself I couldn’t have something I wanted. Instead, I always gave myself a healthier alternative. I traded in ice cream for greek yoghurt. I chose almonds over chocolate. I opted for fresh fruit instead of candy. My life was slowly starting to change. I had more energy, I did better in school and I put myself out there more. Who knew that fuelling my body with the right nutrients was going to change my life that much?!
One of the most important things I learned during this process was that each person is different. I already knew that one person could eat junk all the time and be skinny and another person could do the same but be overweight. What I didn’t realize was that skinny doesn’t always mean healthy. Society places this image in our minds that being skinny is healthy but that isn’t the case 100% of the time. If you aren’t giving your body the nutrients it needs, you’re not healthy… no matter what you look like.
If I told you that I no longer have problems with food, I’d be lying. There are days, especially around exams, when I want to eat everything. Some days I do and I’m rewarded with a nice stomach ache and pounding head ache. Some days I push through and it feels really good. Food was always my comfort, but now I’ve found comfort in other things. My relationship with food is still an ongoing war but each day I get one step closer to taking over.
I know what it’s like to go to food because it’s always there and I know that there are days when you feel like you can’t handle the world. Don’t feel like you are alone (I did for a long time.) Channel that energy into something else- a new hobby, a new exercise routine, reading a good book or cooking (healthy meals!) I like to find distractions like after-dinner walks or throwing myself into my school work. One day when you are under pressure or stress, you’re going to look at that food and think… “there’s a better way to handle this situation.” Work towards that moment.