I’m back!!! I’m three weeks post-partum and FINALLY feeling partially human again and have a second to write down some thoughts for you!  Here’s some updates-

Our bundles of joy!

Babies are doing FANTASTIC! Keegan O’Conner Austin was born 6 lbs and Kayden Robert Austin was born 5 lbs 10 oz on June 24, 2017.
I had a C-Section 🙁 Babies flipped a BUNCH last minute (that’s a whole blog post in itself!)
I’m recovering well from the c-section, it actually wasn’t too bad (also another blog post).
I’m nursing and supplementing with some formula, but YAY for being able to breastfeed longer than with my first son and TWINS at that!
I’ve been eating alright and getting back on track fitness wise (not cleared to workout yet, so I’m resting and recovering).

Ok, so those updates out of the way…

I’m so glad to be BACK and helping others with their health and fitness! This week we released a FREE Clean Eating Challenge group on Facebook, and it got me thinking… If I had to call our “diet” anything, if I had to relate our meal plans to any one diet, I would call it Common Sense… I don’t prescribe to any one “diet” and only try to use common sense to eat and here are my reasons why…

I HATE DIETS!! I always have! This goes way back to middle school where I started to have a “relationship” with food.  I was SUPER skinny as a child and people always commented on it. So, to prove to people that I actually ate, I went overboard and ate for attention. I remember vividly stuffing a whole sleeve of chocolate donuts down my throat as the entire cafeteria looked on in amazement. Or, asking my friends if there were going to finish their food as they just sat down to eat and finishing off everyones leftovers as if I was a garbage disposal just for the reactions! Then, high school hit… I still LOVED eating bad food, mostly to show people that I could eat whatever I wanted and not gain weight. People would always comment that that would some day “catch up to me”.  I was also an athlete in cross country. Junior year being an athlete and my relationship with food took a turn for the worse when my coach said that I was getting a little too heavy to be a runner.  Unfortunately, I listened to him (along with some of my fellow runners) and began to restrict my food… at one point I was packing my lunch and only putting an apple because I knew I hated apples and would only take a bite and then be done.  Finally, I experienced a time where I had eaten poorly for lunch (a taco salad) and was running and in my mind decided if I just puked it out I would be faster and wouldn’t feel so bad.  That was the point I said, “NO! No more of this, if I go down this path there is no coming back.”  I battled back to health ever since.  So, NO, no diets for me please! Anything that stinks of a diet, I refuse to come near! Food is super mental for me.

Fast forward to present day, how can I be a “health and fitness coach” if I don’t believe in diets? Because diets don’t WORK! Healthy eating and habits do! Now, we can debate about what “healthy eating” entails, but to me it means saying NO to extremes! Here are some of our guidelines:

KEEP IT CLEAN!!! The one small (although it may seem like a big step at first) step we can take towards eating healthy and meeting out fitness goals is to look at what you are currently eating and figure out what changes you can make to insure that those foods are CLEAN. What does that mean? Should we literally wash our food? Well, yes, but it’s more than that! When we think of clean foods we should think of FRESH, LOCAL, ORGANIC, WHOLE, and SIMPLE (FLOWS for short, heehee)! Today, I want you to look inside your pantry and your fridge and ask yourself the following questions about what’s inside:

1) Is this fresh? Can it sit on the shelf FOREVER and not get bad? (This is acceptable in SOME cases, but most of your food should be able to go bad at some point. i.e. McDonald’s Hamburgers never “go bad” and can last through a nuclear explosion, that’s probably not good for you…  )

2) Is this local? Where was my food made? Where does it come from? This is important because the farther from the source your food comes from the less nutrients it has for you. Here’s an article on these first two questions to look at: http://www.foodandnutrition.org/…/Whole-Foods-vs-Processed…/

3) Is this organic? I know organic and non-GMO foods are all the rage right now. So, you can basically get your Fruit Loops organic and non-GMO, but that does NOT mean you can eat Fruit Loops or foods just because they are organic. Organic junk food is STILL junk food! It’s a bonus and probably a given that your healthy foods are also organic and non-GMO.

4) Is this a whole food? This basically mean get rid of everything processed and everything with ingredients that you cannot pronounce!

5) Is this food simple? Get rid of those “boxed dinners”, yes they promise to be more simple for you, BUT they are NOT simple for your body. Our meals usually contain a few main ingredients, again, not a ton of ingredients! Those boxed dinners have preservatives up the wazuu! Look for canned and boxed items that leave out the extras, and have lists like “water and main ingredient,” or “whole grains and nuts”.

If you follow these 5 basic questions, and use portion control and balance, you are prescribing to our “diet”.  I eat 5 times every day- a LOT more food than when I was actually “dieting” and anywhere from 1600-2000+ calories depending on my goals and current fitness program, although I NEVER count calories.  We go by portions and basically “macros”, but again, I stay away from labeling it that because (1) mentally I can’t handle it and (2) we include micronutrients and several other markers besides just fats, carbs, and proteins.

Eating this way did NOT come over night for me and continues to be an everyday struggle/process.  But now, instead of having a negative relationship with food, I love learning new things and recipes and helping others do the same! I think our “anti-diet” diet works too because we got some awesome reviews from our FREE clean eating challenge group! Our challengers lost from 2-5 lbs in five days and LOVED our variety of recipes/foods and never felt hungry! This is a total win for us! We are out to tell the world to STOP dieting and start loving your body with healthy foods that ROCK!

Interested in getting our free clean eating meal plan or joining our next free eating challenge group? Send us an email or comment below!