Changes and Finding Confidence and Comfort

Good evening fellow food lovers! Smile I am so happy to hear that so many of you liked the recipes I have shared over the past few days! I love hearing positive feedback on my recipes and it makes me incredibly excited when someone tells me that they are actually going to try my recipe! Smile I consider that as a compliment as I take my cooking very seriously Winking smile It’s never a dull moment in my kitchen! Believe me! So be expecting more recipes coming your way because today was all about food prepping for the upcoming week! Smile I usually do food prep on the weekends, but I got pretty creative today and broke away from the “usuals” Winking smile

I have been going through quite a few changes lately and have been wanting to talk about them with all of you because I am extremely impressed with how I have been dealing with things.

One of the changes as all of you know is totally cutting out cardio and reducing my time at the gym for a month. I am no “cardio junkie”, but I was nervous about no longer doing my high intensity sprints on the treadmill (at least for now – throughout the LIVEFIT program cardio is reintroduced in the second phase). I definitely saw great results from doing HIIT, but I had to take a serious look my goals and revaluate what I was doing in order to achieve them. So, no cardio it is. I want muscle gain. I need to gain and this is how I am going about doing that. My thoughts of cutting out cardio were not that pleasant. I immediately thought that I was going to no longer see my abs and gain some serious weight very quickly. Despite such thoughts, I committed to the program and the plan because I know it is just ED thoughts telling me that I am going to gain weight too quickly. Now I am finishing up two weeks without cardio and haven’t gained a single ounce nor are my abs covered up by the “fat” ED was telling me I would soon put on. So there you have it friends, you do not have to be a slave to that treadmill! Of course cardio has it’s time and place, but now I think I am going to use cardio more as a “tool” than something I do weekly. When I want to lean out for a particular occasion I can incorporate some HIIT into my routines, but now I am just specifically focusing on gaining, so I will be eating clean and lifting heavy Smile

I have also changed my diet up recently. Other than incorporating complex carbohydrates into my dinner (meal five), I have also increased my carb intake in general. Carbs are so important and many people, too many people, are so confused about that. My friend and I had a long chat about this issue over a cup of tea the other night. I get very upset and frustrated when I read inaccurate information in the media regarding nutrition because people believe it. Trust me, I have been there. When I went through my ED I believed anything and everything I read even if I knew better!
I came across a really good article written by Michelle LeSueur the other day that I hope all of you take the time to read. It made me realize some things and it totally related to what was discussed over tea with my friend the other night, too! So ironic!

If you don’t have time to read the article, I will mention some of the things that have been on my mind lately and were also found within the article…

Somehow, I would love to educate others that fitness competitors and models do not look they way they do on stage and in picture at all times. They look like that for their show, photo shoot, or whatever it may be, but not throughout their daily lives. Fitness competitors go through extreme routines to look like that. It’s incredibly intense and seems exhausting (if you want to read about Naomi’s journey for prepping for a competition – check it out her blog!) I totally admire these individuals for being able to do something so intense, but it is important to note that, like I said, they do not look like this all of the time. I love that Naomi has a picture of herself on her blog termed as “Off – Season Naomi”. I admire her for doing that; showing others that she does not look like that all of the time because really, a person needs to drink water and if you drink water before a show – the competitors won’t look as “tight” as they do!

I’ll even admit, I love to see my abs on a daily basis, but really? It’s not a totally normal thing (especially for women). So, now that I am on my new training routine and diet consisting of more carbs and calories to promote weight gain I am reminding myself that I do not need to look like a cover model each and every day, or any day at all for that matter. I just need to look like Meg Smile Happy, healthy Meg Smile

It’s kind of crazy how well I am dealing with the changes, though. Especially since I am sitting a lot more lately due to studying for exams. Of course, there are days when all I feel like I do is eat, but hey! I love food! Smile I rather eat than not eat, right!? YES!

A huge accomplishment of mine lately has been being able to feel comfortable in my own skin. One thing that I have always struggled with is being able to rest my hands on my stomach. There was always something about that stomach area that I did not feel comfortable with. At times I couldn’t even wear t-shirts that grazed my lower abdominal area, but now – I am so comfortable with my bod and am actually able to appreciate my tummy Winking smile I realized how comfortable I became with myself when I read Tessa’s blog last week. She discussed how she would “grab” at herself feeling for “fat”. I could totally relate with this and how I used to to the exact same thing. It was such a bad habit. And then I realized… I do not do this anymore! From there I knew, I am much more comfortable with being me. Being in my skin and appreciating everything about it (even if that includes a little extra here or there) Smile

Something that reminds me to be confident in my own skin is this

christmastree 024

The red shoe. My favourite Christmas ornament Smile

christmastree 020

Last year, I attended a “Red Shoe Event”. It was a fashion show and dinner to promote body confidence because it is believed that red shoes are associated with boldness and self – confidence! I was given a beautiful bookmark at the event last year with a description of the meaning behind red shoes, but am unable to find it, so I will leave you with a beautiful quote that I found on the Rock Red Shoes website instead!

“You are not your bra-size, nor are you the width of your waist, nor are you the slenderness of your calves. You are not your hair color, your skin color, nor are you a shade of lipstick. Your shoe-size is of no consequence. You are not defined by the amount of attention you get from males, females, or any combination thereof. You are not the number of sit-ups you can do, nor are you the number of calories in a day. You are not your moustache. You are not the hair on your legs. You are not a little red dress. You are no amalgam of these things.
You are the content of your character. You are the ambitions that drive you. You are the goals that you set. You are the things that you laugh at and the words that you say. You are the thoughts you think and the things you wonder. You are beautiful and desirable not for the clique you attend, but for the spark of life within you that compels you to make your life a full and meaningful one. You are beautiful not for the shape of the vessel, but for the volume of the soul it carries.”

Have you ever heard about red shoes and their symbolism?
Do you own a pair of red shoes?
I don’t! But, I have my Christmas ornament Winking smile
Would you consider yourself to have good self-confidence or is it something you could work on? Like I said, I feel as though I have finally found comfort and confidence within myself, but we all have our days when things don’t seem so splendid, but those days are few and far apart for me!

Have a wonderful week friends! Chat tomorrow!

Meg
xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

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About Meg (A Dash of Meg)

Hello, my name is Meg. I am a 20-year-old passionate Foods & Nutrition student on my way to becoming a Registered Dietitian who loves food, cooking, fitness, seafood, and a nice cup of tea.

Posted on December 11, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 36 Comments.

  1. Your timing is impeccable! I love love love love love this.

  2. YAY!! Way to combat those bad thoughts girl! 😀
    Hope this newfound comfort and confidence carries you all the way through the week! 🙂

  3. Great post! Glad to hear you are feeling good about your body. I still sometimes notice myself grabbing at my stomach… ugh!

  4. I love this post! I’m trying to break that bad habit of grabbing at my ‘fats’ still… getting there, sort of! I need to gain weight and muscle too, but I can’t quite let go of running. It keeps me sane, in a way. And yes, carbs are SO IMPORTANT! I used to be carbo-phobic but now I’ve seen the light. 😉

  5. I love this post!! I have to say, being in the competition world; it’s true..not everyone looks like that at all times! I do pride myself on being able to do it the healthy way & yeah, I may not be at “tight” as some of the other competitors, but I know my body. And when my body tells me to eat a certain way for it to function properly; that is wayyy more important to me than how “tight” my abs are on stage. It’s all about balance & what makes you happy :]

  6. Awesome post! 🙂 I feel like self confidence is something I am working harder to gain back every day! I’ve never heard about the red shoes and their symbolism but I do have a pair of red heels and I always feel hot when I wear them!

  7. Awesome post, Meg! I’m just like you; not a ‘typical’ cardio junkie, but I love me some sprints (and swings!) You made a great point about models and figure competitors; they’re so dialed in that their ‘on stage’ look is there for a day or so, but we’re left with that image that so many people deem to be ‘perfect’. I like what you said about it.

    Nia Shanks wrote an awesome post earlier this week about strength and confidence that you reminded me of; I think you may like it: http://www.niashanks.com/blog/get-strong-get-confident

  8. loved this post. you’re doing incredible things and i’m so proud of you! and i LOVE the red shoe idea!!!! so cute. now i want one for my tree 🙂

  9. Aww I think this is your best post yet!! I read that article you linked the other day and it seriously shocked me! I knew most of the stuff already, but seeing it altogether in one article was kinda scary 😦

    You are growing so much every day, physically and mentally. You’re such an inspiration for those who have had EDs x

  10. This post seriously made my day. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
    I’m SO happy to hear that your new diet and exercise plan is going well. The fact that you’ve been able to gain such confidence in yourself and your body is beyond inspirational.
    I just had a looong conversation with my grandma this weekend about carbs. She avoids all carbs because she’s been conditioned to think carbohydrates=bad. It’s so frustrating! I spent forever explaining the difference between complex and simple carbs and I think she’s finally beginning to understand it. That article is perfect!
    I love your red shoe ornament! What an awesome symbol for confidence. I have a pair of red heels that I looove. ❤

  11. I love everything about this post. I used to have the same problem of over exercising and the constant fear of am I burning enough calories or the need to burn everything I ate.
    Now I do have those days/moments of ‘feeling fat’ but I’m glad I don’t slip back into old habits! Being comfortable in my own skin is something I continue to strive for everyday. Grabbing at my ‘fats’ is something I still do sometimes which sucks…but with time I want to stop this completely!

  12. LOVE this post Meg! Our tea date gave me a lot to think about too. I love our chats! 🙂

    I’m so so so happy for you that you’re feeling so confident lately. I know how hard it can be to build up that confidence after so many years of our ED telling us that we’re not good enough. So proud of you love! xoxo

  13. Wow that is such a beautiful quote and something I think all women should try to remember when they’re feeling a bit down about themselves! I have never heard of the symbol of the red shoes, so thanks for such an informative post!

  14. So much truth in this post!! I agree that I hate a lot of the media because the articles they post are horrible especially the ones where they say how little celebs eat in terms of calories. I read an article where one said she ate 1200 and the magazine was praising her for it!! I was like great now all her women fans are going to only eat that much!!
    In terms of self confidence, I have zero. BUT I’m working on it 🙂

  15. robert LeGuilloux

    you are so thoughtful..love you honey

  16. LOVE this post! You are so right about not being a slave to the treadmill. I feel so bad for girls that waste all of their time on the treadmill and don’t get results. Having confidence goes SUCH a long way 🙂

  17. StoriesAndSweetPotatoes

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  18. This is lovely . Just wish I could feel that way. I don’t feel I’m deserving of carbs or big calories when I need to gain weight but not exercise. I feel so sad.

    Do you have favorite blogs and websites and magazines that you draw inspiration from (with meal plans and ideas that give samples?)

  19. runningperspective

    girl THIS MAKES ME SO SO SO SO HAPPY!!!!! i am so inspired by your newfound confidence and ahh you are gonna be RIPPEDD by the end of this trainer!!<33333

  20. I love this quote!! It’s so true, and so many of us slip into that mindset where if we can’t work out/see our abs/weigh x amount/fit in x size, then we’re not worth it. I’m so glad you’ve found a workout program that gives you this confidence!! And I totally know how uncomfortable giving up cardio is – being a runner I’m def a cardio “junkie’ and so going without it the past week and a half has made for an antsy grumpy Kate lol! GOOD LUCK with the rest of your final exams this week!!!!

  21. what a good post meg!! i love that quote. everything you said is so very true, especially about what we see in magazines with women who are insanely fit. they can only hold that body fat percent for so long and stay that lean. its also about continuing to grow throughout life…yes we make goals and thats what keeps us motivated, but its a continuous process (at least for me). putting it in that perspective made me not be so hard on myself like i use to be years ago- theres room for learning, and forgiveness for what some would consider “cheating”. i consider it necessary for my sanity (like drinking wine without feeling guilty once in a while). and you know what? my results are better because it of. love your ornament!! i do have a pair of red heels that i break out during the christmas season 🙂

  22. I love this post….It’s funny you mention self confidence…During yoga tonight (and a lot lately actually) I have been thinking about this…I will be posting about it this week…

    The quick and dirty answer-I have more self confidence than I used to but I am not up to par yet. YET being the operative word. At the end of the day, I grew up fat and made fun of my whole life, it’s going to take some time for me to shake that off…but I’ll do it.

  23. Thanks for this reminder Meg! i have been getting into weightlifting and dreaming of looking like these fitness models i see on bodybuilding.com. i read what their diets are and i put myself up to those standards. I see that their calories sometimes are under 1000 per day! And I know it is completely unrealistic for me..someone who just had a baby 3 months ago, is breastfeeding and on top of that is weight-training & doing cardio 4-5x a week. I also beat myself up when I eat too many carbs even though they are healthy carbs-oatmeal, quinoa, sprouted bread etc. Thanks again for the reminder that these people are competing for contests and that unless our goals are the same its okay to be normal…fit 🙂 but normal..

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