How You Should Be Eating and Exercising.
There are two common questions that I am asked often:
- What diet do I follow?
- What exercise program do I follow?
My answer: I don’t really follow any particular diet or exercise program. I eat intuitively and I exercise depending on what I feel my body needs.
To be honest, if I really had to get specific about my diet and label it, it’s pretty much a Meditteranean Diet – the majority is a mix of whole grains, vegetables, fruit, legumes/beans, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, and fish. I eat small amounts of dairy, eggs, poultry, dark chocolate, and very occasionally drink red wine and eat red meat. Instead of focusing on following a diet, labeling myself, and putting it all in a box, I instead eat what I feel my body needs and if I’m craving certain foods, I try to work out what my body really actually needs or wants.
I do my best to eat organic when possible and shop at my local farmers market most weekends for fruit and vegetables.
When it comes to my exercise routine I decide what type of exercise I’m going to do based on these four things:
- How are my energy levels today?
- Which phase of my menstrual cycle am I in?
- Which Soul Mode am I currently in? (more on this soon!)
- What do I actually feel like doing today?
It might seem complicated, but actually it makes it really easy. I’m fortunate that my hubby and I have an awesome home gym set up and I do 90% of my exercise at home. Before I decide what I’m going to do, I simply ask myself ‘what do I feel like doing?’ – if I’m feeling really motivated and a bit like superwoman and I’m buzzing with energy ill go for a run, do a HIIT workout or set up a challenging circuit. When I’m feeling much more beary and tired ill roll out my yoga mat for a yin yoga session that feels so delicious and nurturing rather than depleting.
I’m going to admit something right here – I’ve never been great at sticking to strict meal plans or exercise plans. Sure I can do it if I push myself and I have before, but it just doesn’t feel nice. It feels limiting and hard. It’s just not me and you know what….that’s ok!
Many of my clients come to me feeling deflated because they can never stick to a diet or exercise routine. They say that they feel like they are constantly being beaten and feel ashamed or embarrassed that everyone else seems to be able to do it but they cant.
It’s not until we begin unpacking things that they start to see that the reason they can’t do the things they want to do is not that they are weak or have no will power, but rather that they are perhaps more intuitive than they know and when resistance comes up it’s actually because they are turning into what they need – they just haven’t made the connection yet.
When we listen to what we actually need we can achieve so much more. We don’t burn yourselves out or run ourselves into the ground
Now, this certainly isn’t a free card out of eating well or exercising daily. No. This is about you listening to your body and doing what it’s asking from you.
When you feel energetic, strong, and motivated you to go for it. You exercise for longer, lift heavier weights and push yourself that little bit more. But when your energy starts to fade you go easy on yourself.
And when it comes to your diet you eat depending on what you feel that your body needs. And no sorry, blocks of chocolate and tubs of ice cream dont count. Im talking about real food here.
It should go without saying that you need to limit sugar, dairy, alcohol, caffeine, and processed foods. But when it comes to actually eating, trust what your body is asking for. Fill your plate with wholesome foods and enjoy them. Cook as much as you can and if you can’t cook or don’t like to cook try to find recipes that you enjoy cooking and try to get the family involved in helping if you can. You’ll be surprised how much children love to help in the kitchen.
Something you really need to consider when it comes to meals and following a particular diet – paleo, keto, vegetarian, Mediterranean, vegan, pescatarian, etc – is that there really is no one right way to eat. We all need different foods and we can all thrive eating different diets. I encourage you to focus mostly on ensuring that your meals contain protein, healthy fats, and fiber. Fill your plate with more veggies than anything else and remember to chew your food really well so that your digestive system can then absorb the most nutrients.
Trust your instinct and desires. Be kind and gentle with yourself. Eat well and exercise often because you love your body and you want to feel healthy, strong, and confident.
If you are interest in learning more I have two options for you: