Friday, May 25, 2012

My 30-Day Transformation

More than two weeks ago, I mentioned that I started a program that involves supplementation, eating right and exercise. I just finished that program about 4 days ago and here are the results. I never thought in my entire life that I had a 32.5 inch waistline until I converted it from centimeter. I had no excuse.

 

Many people wouldn’t notice that I’ve lost weight (abdominal fat instead of water and muscles) but I’m glad that a few people did. Best of all, I noticed the difference. Within those 30 days, I reprogrammed my mindset to eat whole and natural foods. But in this modern world that we're living today, it's almost impossible to get all your nutrients from whole foods alone, you need supplements to tune-up your metabolism and revitalize your health. And I also rediscover that fitness has been part of my life years ago and I came to this realization that teaching people how to have a healthy and beautiful yet strong and functional body is one of my goals and dreams.

 


I was doubtful at first and even deny that I don't need this program but our ability to burn fat slows down at a certain age. And I know that I need to reset my metabolism and optimize my body with nutrients in order for my body to be functional again. I cannot do the same thing over and over and expect different results. I have to do it a different way, that's why I engaged in this program for about a month. Today, I feel healthier, fitter and leaner and my confidence is boosted. There's more consistency with my energy levels, mental clarity and emotional balance. I also have this desire to maintain my physical fitness and an awareness of what happens in my body after having eaten the food.

I cannot do the same thing over and over, 
and expect different results.

I'm sure you want to improve your health but when was the last time you challenge yourself to do that? I know food is good and it's more fun to eat. Yes, I've been there. I used to have an appetite for 3 people. I also had my fair share of being insulted just because I am flabby than the rest of the my classmates and colleagues and I'm not even overweight.


I would rather spent my money now on my health rather than spent it later on medications, hospital bills and a football team of doctors. I've witness that with my own late-father.

As a late bloomer, I bloomed late in my career, relationships, finances, dreams, you name it. As a  matter of fact, I'm just starting to bloom and with so many talented young people in different walks and areas of life, I need to keep myself healthy, strong and vibrant.. And honestly, I felt so much better now than in my twenties. I would rather spent my money now on my health rather than spent it later on medications, hospital bills and a football team of doctors. I've witness that with my own late-father.

Teaching nutrition in a culinary school has been a challenge for me these past two years because not a lot of students are open to healthier options. And it's also because I didn't live what I preached. But I realized that I have to change first, inside and out, before I could change other people's mindset about what I'm teaching.


It wouldn't be a goal if there's no challenge, 
and if doesn't challenge me, then it won't change me.

You don't have a have a body like mine because you know what, I'm not yet done with my challenge. This is the body that is ideal for me because I feel great about it. Was it easy? No, it wasn't easy. It still requires commitment, dedication and decision on my part to change. But it was my goal to achieve that and a goal that excites me. It was a also real challenge but it wouldn't be a goal if there's no challenge, and if it doesn't challenge me, then it won't change me.

The question is, are you ready to transform your health? Because I challenge you. But I will be here to coach you and guide you during and even after the program. Your comments are always welcome because I missed them and for people here in the Philippines, you can contact me through Globe at (0917) 3499482 or SUN (0933) 3681882 or email me at divina.pe1176@gmail.com.




Saturday, May 12, 2012

Declutter

So, did you cross over?? Do you remember the word Attraversiamo from my last blog post??

Because I just did. Read on.


When I announced last week that I will deactivate my personal Facebook account, a few people asked me why, I answered back “why not?” But for some people I still have to explain why with follow up questions and comments. And I have to explain it to the point of – “don’t you get it” or “is that difficult to understand?” And I realized that making that explanation made it so stressful on my part. I never thought that deactivating it would be so complicated for other people. My account; my choice – is that simple. I know you yourself know the answer. I decided to deactivate because I know I need to discipline myself and start doing things more productive like writing for my blog more often.

And in a few days, I have to say goodbye to my Nikon D90 camera. I know it would be a pain not to have a DSLR to use for my blog but I have to let it go for now and make use of my point and shoot Canon IXUS. I have to decide which is more important, to keep the camera or financial freedom. The purpose of this blog would still be the same but there would be less of the pictures that I used to take.




I’m on my 21st day of my program. It is still a challenge but I’ve developed the discipline again to eat a decent breakfast and increase my intake of the plant-based ingredients. It takes 21 days to change a habit and I’m glad that in those days, my body has programmed to eat more natural and whole foods. While I was browsing on my past journals, I realized that I’ve lost track of my goals. Yes, I was first trained in classical cooking but I could never separate the fact that food and nutrition will go side by side no matter what. And now I am reminded why I started this blog in the first place back in 2009 – to teach people about the importance of wellness particularly using food as a tool to heal the body. Take care of your body now before it’s too late. An investment on your health today is well worth it instead of using all of your money to cure a symptom from a disease later on.

"Don't you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and who was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourselves but to God; he bought you for a price. So use your bodies for God's glory." 
(1 Corinthians 6:19-20 TEV)

For the past few days, I’ve actually lost my appetite on sweets. I don’t even like the smell of any rich dough bread. I only eat until I’m no longer hunger instead of eating until I’m full. I did have an appetite for three people. And last semester, students were surprised on how much I eat. But it’s different today. Yes, I still love good food. Who doesn’t? But I care more about what the food does and its effect on my well being after I’ve consumed it. I would like to quote from one of Patrick Holford’s book, “Health isn’t just an absence of illness, its’ the abundance of vitality. I believe there exists for all of us the tangible and achievable experience of a profound sense of well being. This is characterized by a consistent, clear and high level of energy, an emotional balance, a sharp mind, a desire to maintain physical fitness and a direct awareness of what suits our bodies, what enhances our health, and what our needs are in any given moment”. It’s exactly what I wanted to convey and I believe you also want that abounding health to manifest in your life.

As I celebrated my birthday yesterday, I know I have a clearer vision in my life. Sifting out the not so important things helps me to be more focus on my long-term goals. I may divert my direction once in a while to try out new things but I now realized what ignites my purpose or what awakens my inspiration as I walk through this journey of helping people to eat better and live healthier.

  

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Wanted: Inspiration

For the past few weeks, I’ve been busy developing recipes for my whole food cooking class this month. Unfortunately, not a lot of people are familiar with it. In a nutshell, whole foods are foods that are either unprocessed or unrefined. Although I teach people to eat more plant-based foods such as whole grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables, I realized that I don’t practice them at all. I mean, not at all. Being in a culinary school, most students are not interested to eat foods that are lower in salt, fat and sugar. I believe we need to reset our palate so that our taste buds will recover and soon enough simple, yet real, true flavors of plant based ingredients will become come satisfying. And being one of the teachers, I directed my focus more on teaching them to become better cooks but have forgotten the vision that I had before when my father passed away almost 5 years ago. And yes, you can still become a better cook and at the same time cook healthy dishes.


And just a few days ago, I just had my antioxidant levels scanned and I got a score of 22,000 (red and orange - low presence of skin carotenoids) which is almost near the red alert. An ideal score would be around 50,000 and up (green and blue - high presence of skin carotenoids). It only means that eating more fruits and vegetables plus supplements should be part of my lifestyle. You may belong to a family whose genetic disposition may lead to cancer, diabetes and heart disease. But I also believe that genes can be changed by the way you eat. I am very grateful that sometimes I am being mistaken for being 25 years old or being a student. But deep inside I know I have to do something about my health on a cellular level. I have to choose the right foods and right supplements so that my cells will absorb them right away. Remembering how much our company spent for my father’s recovery, I am reminded that prevention is still best than cure. I would rather invest on my health first than buy a very expensive signature item.


I still go to the gym a few times a week but when it comes to my eating and sleeping habits, I know I have to make some changes and that includes taking my nutritional supplements regularly. There were times that I feel tired and worn out when I wake up in the morning. I also experienced fatigue and the only thing I wanted to do after work is to lie down and take a nap. The same thing happens when I eat a huge meal for lunch just because I didn’t eat my breakfast: lethargic, sluggish and lazy. Few years ago, I’ve experience what it’s like to feel energized, vibrant, revitalized and inspired. And I want it back. Although I don’t rely on the weighing scale when it comes to my health, I was surprised that I am now 134 lbs which is my heaviest weight so far. People may agree that I look better when I gained the weight, but losing the fat and gaining some muscles would be a better idea.

Two weeks ago, I just started a 1 month program that involves nutrition, supplements and exercise. Sounds like a regular program that you’ve heard before. But if you don’t see result and still doing the same thing, then something needs to be changed. I’m not really the type of person who would go on program for a certain days or months. But it has changed because I know that if I want to feel great again, I would need a metabolic tune-up. My metabolism will function well again once I’ve provided my mitochondria (little factories in our cells that turn food and oxygen into energy and play a central role in our metabolism, our vitality and our well-being.) with the right environment to thrive. So far, within those two weeks, I've seen positive results which I will share after I'm done with the program.


 
Right now, I am still in the process of developing and trying recipes, but this time, it’s not only for the workshop, but also for me. And I realized that in the course of creating them, it was actually a challenge, because not only should they be healthy, they should also taste good. Being inspired is not a natural process for me; sometimes I have to work hard for it. But I learned that if you forced yourself to be inspired, you will never achieve it. So, just let it be and let it flow naturally, and it will come.

You know, food is not just a physical aspect; it affects you emotionally and mentally. When you are not your best on these three areas, rest assured, you won’t be inspired. As I’m writing this post, I recalled two posts that I’ve written before which is about leaving your comfort zone and finding your purpose in life. As I reread those posts, I’ve realized that I’ve come so far but not quite yet. Every day is a battle; every day is a journey; everyday is a surprise. Every day you can decide to cross over, translated from the Italian word Attraversiamo (from the book Eat Pray Love). It could be changing direction, location or our state of mind. Crossing over from being tired, worn out and sluggish to energized, vibrant and revitalized; Crossing over from being in-debt to debt free; crossing over for striving to thriving; crossing over from being discouraged to inspired; crossover being happily single to happily married.

In what area of your life would you like to cross over?