changes for a healthy lifestyle

Transformation Tuesday - 206 vs. 164.
2010 vs. 2017
It’s been a long journey and I’ve learned a lot in the process. I’m not done yet and I will keep pushing myself to be better, to do more and to grow. 🌱
That’s all you can ever do really… The time will pass anyway. Your life will go on. Make change, make progress and learn more about yourself. Don’t get frustrated if it takes longer than you’d like or if you have to restart (again and again).

Find your adventure and be who you want to be. The only person who can make this happen, is you. 😄

Work hard. Venture on. 💪🏞️

When changing your eating habits or attempting to lose weight - check in with yourself every once in a while and ask, “Is what I’m doing sustainable?” The answer will tell you if you’re on a temporary diet with temporary results (and possibly long term consequences) or if you’re making permanent healthy lifestyle changes. 

The ultimate lifestyle changing list.A healthy lifestyle doesn’t only consist of healthy eating and fitness. It also consists of goals, dreams, attitude, self-care and love, sleep and many more things. A healthy lifestyle also leads to a happy life and stressing about what you are eating or missing a gym session won’t be helping you stay healthy either. Yes, make healthy choices, but also lead a lifestyle that will lead up to a happy life.

15 things to remember:

1.   that thing you did that was kind of embarrassing and weird, everyone else forgot about that already

2.   you look fine today, if you can’t notice something on your face standing 6 feet from a mirror then nobody else will either.

3.   social lives can go through cycles sometimes, if you feel like your friends are all ignoring you for no reason they’re probably just busy with other things.

4.   if you can’t stop thinking about someone or something, read a book, paint your nails or watch a movie. it won’t solve any serious problems but you will feel better.

5.   listen with the intent to understand, not the intent to reply.

6.   if you want something, go get it. 

7.   drink lots of water, eat lots of fruit, exercise more, go outside, get enough sleep and think positive thoughts.

8.   if you don’t ask, the answer will always be no.

9.   throw away the idea of a perfect tomorrow and live in the moment.

10.  stop comparing yourself to others.

11.  a beautiful day begins with a beautiful mindset. It’s a privilege to simply be alive and healthy. Start acting like life is a blessing.

12.  act the way you’d like to be and soon you’ll be the way you’d like to act.

13.  you will change. You’re not the same person you were three years ago. you’re not even the same person you were three minutes ago and that’s okay. especially if you don’t like the person you were three minutes ago.

14.  you don’t have to open the curtains if you don’t want to.

15.  being happy is the most important thing.

“Taste the Rainbow” Red Sauce

Whether you’re planning to make a pasta, pizza, or casserole; many of them are held together by the life force of a red sauce–exactly like blood as one of our many connective tissues. Jarred sauce certainly could get the job done but variety is the spice of life. This red sauce features a cornucopia of different vegetables; some that aren’t really standard fare. Whether you’re trying to sneak more vegetables into your own diet, or perhaps have little ones, this is an incognito approach. Well–unless you’re my sister, who is the only person I’ve met who doesn’t like red sauce! There have been countless family arguments over this.

There’s nothing’ wrong with a tomato going solo but what’s more awesome than a bowl of pasta? A bowl of pasta that delivers me several more vitamins and minerals completely unannounced to me.

  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 3-5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced
  • 1 bell pepper (yellow, orange, or red), diced
  • ½-1 TBSP dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried marjoram
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp red chili flake
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • 4 oz red wine (optional, could use another liquid)
  • 2, 28 oz cans of crushed tomatoes (preferably no salt added)
  • 2 TBSP tomato paste
  • 1-2 TBSP of table sugar
  • 3 oz baby spinach (optional, but it’s part of the rainbow and you won’t see or notice it)

Directions: Have your vegetables prepared. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic, then saute until soft and fragrant. Next, add the carrot and celery and do the same. Give a pinch of salt, stir. Then, add the bell pepper and cook until soft. Add the basil, marjoram, oregano, red chili flake, and another dash of salt. Stir to coat vegetables and allow the spices to heat up. Hit it with the red wine; hopefully, you get that “szzzz” sound. We like that sound! Take the heat down to medium-low and add your crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. If your tomatoes are unsalted, give a generous lashing of salt now. If they’re salted, be modest here. Add black pepper as well. Stir well, then finish off with a bit of table sugar to take down the acidity (but we’re not making tomato candy), then finally add the spinach. Let the contents come up to a low bubble, then turn the heat down to low, and cover with a lid. Allow everything to simmer for at least 30 minutes before taking it off the heat and letting it cool down for a bit. Then, take an immersion blender and smooth everything out. See! No off colors or particles! Secret nutrition! 

September 16, 2017

Today marks 365 days since I started my weight-loss journey. Some of these photos I was very reluctant to post because I’ve never enjoyed showing my body or made myself so vulnerable on social media, but this is me and where I am today. There’s so many things I want to say and share about this past year, but I think what’s most important is that I’m happy and healthy. I had great support from friends and family, fought through tons of self doubt, and kept looking towards the finish line the entire time. They weren’t lying in health class, it really is all about eating right, drinking lots of water, and working out. As of now I have lost a total of 95lbs. A year ago today I made a choice, and I will never turn back. To the girl from a year ago, I want you to know that you were beautiful no matter what size you wore or what you weighed on the scale, and I’m glad you decided to change your lifestyle so you could be healthy and work on your physical and mental health. If only you could see now how much better you feel about yourself and about life. I hope I can share this and inspire some people no matter what it is they’re trying to achieve in life right now. Stick with it and believe in yourself. You can do it! ✨💪🏻🎉

Love yourself just as you are or love yourself as you change yourself. Your own happiness and health (mental or physical) are whats the most important.

Was looking back at my Camera Roll today and wanted to compare pictures from the start of this whole thing to the ones I took this morning. Wow.

Left picture was taken on January 6 this year. I think this was around my highest weight of 165. There’s almost a thirty-pound difference between these two pictures.

Building a Better Burger– Now, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the odd burger or two, but don’t you ever wish that the toppings inside your burger were a bit fresher? Maybe a little more wholesome? Dare I say–nutritious? As we know, most condiments and toppings are processed within an inch of their life. They might have been a vegetable in a past life but they only vaguely resemble them now. It’s a labor of love, but I tell ya’ there’s nothing really like topping up your favorite toasty treats with a few homemade touches.

Both of these recipes are vegan and gluten free, so no matter what kind of buns you eat, or what you eat between your buns; everyone will be able to enjoy a homemade and fresh condiment that might even sneak a few extra micronutrients into that sandwich you’re whipping up.

Ketchup

  • 2 -28 oz cans of crushed tomatoes (low or no sodium)
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ of a large yellow onion
  • 3 small cloves of garlic
  • 1 stalk of celery
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup of molasses (you can adjust the vinegar-to-sweetener ratio depending on your tastes; I like vinegar)
  • 1 ½ tsp salt (if tomatoes are salted, use less here
  • ¾ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground mustard

Directions: Prepare the vegetables with rough chops, it will all get blended out later. Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker, on high, and left uncovered. Stir every hour until it is reduced to the desired thickness. At least 6 hours, up to 10 hours. Blend the contents once they’ve cooled significantly. If you really feel like going through the Hell of smashing it through a sieve you can, but I really don’t care enough to make that sort of mess in my kitchen. I’m not afraid of a few seeds in my ketchup. Should make 48-60 (1 TBSP) servings depending on how much you let it reduce. I froze half and kept half in my fridge.

Pickles

  • 2 large cucumbers
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 lb of any sweet pepper that isn’t too spicy (I usually use pimientos but there weren’t any, so I grabbed poblanos this time. Red bell peppers would be delicious, too.)
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 3 cups of white vinegar
  • 3 cups of water
  • 6 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black peppercorns

Directions: Prepare the vegetables how you’ll like them. I made coins out of the cucumbers, straws out of the onions, and diced the peppers and garlic. Set the garlic aside for now.  In a large glass jar (such as a flour/sugar canister; it should hold 2 quarts) layer the vegetables and place a few of the black peppercorns between each layer. On the stove, bring the water to a boil. Next, lower the heat to low and place the garlic in. Simmer it for 5 minutes. Then, add the white vinegar and the salt, bring the heat back up to high, and let it boil. Let it boil until the salt completely dissolves. Finally, feed the liquid into the jar. If you have a funnel, use it! Splashing boiling vinegar is bound to suck. Now, cover the jar opening with the lid but don’t seal it just yet. Let it cool on the counter for a few hours before sealing it and placing it in your fridge. They’ll start getting super tasty in a day or two, but I tell you. Once you’re week 1 or even week 2 into your pickles. Holy crap. These should keep for up to three months, but you’ll eat them before then because they’re so frickin’ good.

Today, I wore a crop top for the first time in public.

360lbs before. I want to say there’s about 165lb and three year difference here.

Even though I had been obese my entire life I knew the day I took this picture that I was going to succeed. Be a visionary. Think about who you want to be, not what you want to weigh. Adopt a healthy and active lifestyle and you’ll see the results physically. :)

when i was 7, i hated my accent. I was the new girl in a texas school coming straight from new orleans. the kids made fun of me so I changed the way i talked to fit in.
when I was 9, my aunt lost custody of her daughter and my cousin came to live with us. she was of fair complexion, much like our mothers- with long, silky hair. when we would go out to the store people would stop us and say “my, your daughter is so beautiful, with all that pretty long hair” referring to my cousin. and i was there too. wanting to be seen. but my mother would say “that’s my niece and this is my daughter"… the looks on their face would change. I began to hate my skin at 10. My body was changing and so was my outlook on self esteem. when I was 12, I hated my body. I was fat. Every morning I stood in the mirror, I would shove 3 fingers down my throat, in hopes of cleansing my stomach of all fat. I went days without eating… just drinking water and throwing up. when i was 13, I was avidly playing sports. basketball, volleyball, tennis, softball… anything in hopes of losing weight. i made it to be 150lbs and still thought i was fat. when i was 14, I lost my virginity in the most unconventional way ever. i thought that sharing the most precious part of me was somehow tied to the attraction of others… and if they’d like me enough to want to have sex with me. I focused so much on maintaining external beauty that i was failing my inner self. by 17, I had contemplated suicide more than twice. I looked in the mirror and hated what I saw. The mirror became my enemy. at 20 years old, I entered a terribly toxic relationship. i felt that he was all I had, and if he left me… who would want me? I stayed through a lot of emotional abuse. through all of this, the number on the scale has constantly fluctuated. at 22, I am able to say that I’ve conquered myself. I’ve been through a lot and the journey of self love has been the most perilous. Every day, there is something new. A new fad, a new beauty standard- a new way to make yourself appear slimmer, a new tea, a new diet… whatever. none of those things will work if you don’t find and appreciate your own inner beauty. love yourself first. love yourself always. the number on the scale will change but you must continue to love yourself. lead a healthy lifestyle. take care of your body both physically and mentally. drink water. see a doctor. see a therapist. don’t deal with things on your own. someone will listen and someone will help.
don’t give up on yourself.
you are your greatest feat.

-B♥️
08.09.2017

For Wednesday, October 11th, 2017

Journal

Oh. Man. Wednesday was a rough day. For any newcomers, I talk about periods a lot–just so y’know. Anyway, this is only my second period since stopping my birth control. The first one wasn’t so bad, but I knew that shouldn’t be a sign of what’s to come because this one has been about back to what I remember. Every time I pee, it’s like pissing knives. Every time something even grazes my abdomen I wince. The cat, as good a little heater she is kept “making biscuits” right on my damn pelvis. The cramps aren’t so bad that I’m fainting or throwing up like I have in the past, but they’re bad enough that I make vocalizations. I’m so fatigued that getting up is an event.

I still got up and kept going, because I can really only slow down so much. I slept through my alarm so I wasn’t able to get to the gym and had to go ahead and get ready for the Lyft to come take me to therapy.

As future Meg, I can go ahead and tell you that I’m feeling a lot better today, but yesterday really was a challenge.

Nutrition

Apps featured include Fitbit and CRON-O-Meter.