Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Happy Primal (Paleo) Anniversary to us!

Well here I am at my one year Primal/Paleo-ish anniversary!  I can hardly believe a year has gone by. On Memorial day in 2012, my husband turned to me and said, "I want us to stop eating sugar, gluten, soy, grains and all other processed foods."  I sooo wanted to strangle him at the time.  I was dealing with a one month old, breastfeeding and on maternity leave from a full-time job!  You can read more about that introduction to our diet here.   Also we had all just gotten over a nasty stomach virus. 

After I got a handle on my newborn and decided to stay home and ditch the job that wasn't making me happy, I got into a Paleo/Primal groove.  By November I was fully on-board.  In December I did a 21-day sugar-detox to help me gain control of my sweet cravings and get me over the weight loss plateau I was experiencing.  It worked too.  Such a crazy time to do it but I lost eight pounds while others were gaining the holiday cookie exchange pounds! January and February cruised by with great new recipes and more shedding of pounds.  Soon my clothes became too big for me and I started seeing muscle definition I have never seen on my body before.  March came and went.  In April we celebrated my daughter's first birthday.  Now May is over and we have completed a year of eating in Paleo/Primal ways.

What has a year done for me?  Well even beyond looks and weight loss, I honestly feel better now.  I sleep better.  I have less stress and more energy throughout the day (which is good since I'm chasing after two girls all the time!!)  My allergies aren't as bad.  My skin is the clearest it has ever been.  When I do exercise, I feel stronger and that I can last longer.  A year ago I could barely keep up with a Jillian Michael workout, run a mile or do yoga.  Now those routines are becoming too easy for me.  Now I am move into positions and run faster than I ever have in my life!!   I can hold side planks for minutes even while holding a 20-pound baby!   See for yourself below:

I could go on and on.  These are just a few examples of how going primal has been amazing for me.  Eating this way has touched every aspect of my life for the better.  When you feel good on the inside and outside your whole attitude and life becomes greater!  :-)

Now that's not to say it's a piece of gluten-free cake?!  I cook or prepare nearly three fresh meals a day for my family; plus add to that snacks and sometimes desserts too.  It's not easy!  I am in the kitchen a lot!  I run the dishwasher almost daily because I dirty so many dishes and storage containers.  But it's been worth it.  I have never felt better.  I haven't looked this good since my high school days.  I never thought I'd be giving away an entire wardrobe because it is too big for me!  Never!  Yet here I am going through it, giving it away and trying to sell a few pieces.  I keep track of my favorite meals here on this blog and I often look back at my meal planning post for ideas to prepare ahead for a month.

Yes my husband gets full credit for our lifestyle changes.  If it weren't for him, I'd still be using boxes of "healthy whole wheat pasta" and "healthy brown rice" with cans of spaghetti sauce loaded with sugar, soy and more.  *Shuddering thinking of how we used to eat!   He's brought sexy back in not just me but also in our diet.   I now eat vegetables that I hadn't eaten in years, such as asparagus.  Then I branched out and tried even more greens that I eat several times a month now, like roasted Brussels sprouts. Who knew veggies tasted so good?!  Crazy!

I'm proud of our family for doing this for our health.  I'm proud of us for sticking with this way of eating for a whole year.  I'm proud of me for not only losing all the baby weight from my second child but also shedding an additional twenty pounds, all within a year of Lana's 1st birthday!   I'm proud of my husband for being so passionate about his health and seeking into this natural way of eating to combat his issues.  Our methods of eating are working!  He feels so much better now - no more heartburn, acid reflux and extra heartbeats!  Thanks to the folks in the Primal/Paleo community, we have educated ourselves even further and feel like we're part of something bigger and greater than ourselves!

So what is ahead for the next year?  What's in store for my family and me and this blog?  More good recipes for sure!  Perhaps some new friends?  I just joined Paleo Pen Pals and am excited to find out more about that and anxious to virtually meet my first Paleo pal across the country!  Beyond that, I will continue to educate my girls on a healthy lifestyle. I will continue writing and sharing here when the mood strikes me.  Now that it's summer time here around Florida, I have my five year old in the kitchen helping me slice, crack eggs and more.  So you'll see her featured in my upcoming recipes and how I keep her busy in at home "summer school."  Stay tuned for more fun!  Thanks for being with me and for reading!  From my family to yours -- Be well and be good to yourself. 

Best wishes always,
Mandy and family

Hello there from my family - Tallest is daddy/husband Kirk.  That's me, Mandy in the blue.  I'm holding one year old daughter Lana Jane and the five year old daughter is Vivian Rose! 

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