My mother used to tell me all the time: "you are what you eat". I know pretty much everyone in the world has heard this phrase at some point. But there was one time in particular that this really sunk in. My mother was living in a tiny town in Belgium, working on being the healthiest person she could to fight her cancer naturally. I was able to visit her pretty easily because I was playing baseball in France. One day we took a walk around the ancient town and talked about what that phrase actually meant.
It does not mean you will be an animal if you eat animals, or turn all green and wilt-y if you eat spinach. It does not even only mean what you physically eat as well. We talked about how it meant that every single thing you allow your body to take in, you take on the energy of those things. If you eat processed foods and surround yourself with negativity, well, you'll probably end up a pretty unhealthy person. If you eat a lot of meat and exercise profusely, you'll probably end up a little more aggressive in personality than if you ate a vegan diet and only took walks through the woods. Makes sense. It's not all that extreme if you just think about it at a base level. But, when you really start to break things down: your general health, your heart health, your attention span, your sleep levels, your stress, your ability to communicate, and on and on. You realize that your personality and what you "take in" in your life are very closely related. Some people just react more quickly/strongly to the outside influences that others. I know plenty of people who led WAY unhealthier childhoods than my mother, but they are alive and "well", while my mom died of cancer in her 50's.
No I didn't want this post to turn into a discussion about what actually defines health and un health; I'll go that route another day. What I wanted to get to was how this walk around town helped me realize that I could literally change not only my physical appearance, but my physiological make up (to a point) and my psychology based on what I "ate". All I had to do was pay very close attention to how things affected me. Very quickly, over the next two years, I found that gluten messed me up, as did dairy, and shell fish were tougher on me than other seafoods. I realized I had an extreme reaction to any sugars (basically anything that would very quickly metabolize as glucose in my body: desserts, alcohols, processed carbs). I have yet to go tot eh doctor and test all this stuff, which I know would benefit me like crazy. But, I know my body incredibly well. I know exactly what I need to do to lose weight, sleep better, reduce stress, get bigger, get tons of energy and so on. I know what to eat and when to eat it, how to train and mostly how to recover. It's just a matter of discipline to make sure I'm on top of things at all times. Side-note" I will be writing about the frustrations of discipline in one of my next 3 posts.
One of the biggest things I've found is that I retain liquids at an abnormal level. I know I've written about this before, but I find this so interesting. For all human beings, eating processed food and quickly metabolized glucose retains liquids. Liquid retention slows the metabolism down, a lot. This causes the process of nutrient distribution to slow down and sometimes not even occur. When your nutrients are not being distributed, your systems (nervous, hormonal, muscular, etc) all function at a less than optimal level and commonly understood negative things are more likely to occur, like: increased blood pressure, weight gain stress, slow strength gains, lack of sleep, weak immune system, and so on. Keep this trend going for most of your life and you find yourself at a much higher risk of heart disease, heart attack, diabetes, obesity, and the wonderful experience of death! Yay!
Step one in not allowing all this to happen? Drink more water! The simple act of drinking water allows the process of flushing-out. This moves things through your body and jump-starts all those natural processes. If you have a slow metabolism (and if you don't know if you do or not, just keep following my blog) drinking water is a HUGE first step. If you're like me, drinking almost 2 gallons daily and only headed to "take a number 1" about 4 times a day, you may have a problem. The second I stop consuming liquid-retaining-foods, my bathroom breaks skyrocket to about 15-20 a day. seem like a lot? Yeah, probably. But when things are flowing through me well, I all of a sudden don't crave so much water, and drink less. Then my breaks sit around 10 a day and I'm happy with that. And when I'm drinking about a gallon a day, eating pretty much ZERO foods/drinks that metabolize quickly as glucose in my body, incredible things happen. I sleep more deeply, I have less stress, fat literally melts off my body (like losing 12-16 pounds in 1 week. Yep, that actually happened to me), I recover SO fast, I have quicker and gains, and I am generally happier. And then more happens: I communicate with people better, I am less irritated, I feel more at peace with people and myself, I am more eager to do the things I know make me a better person. Being "disciplined" is not hard, it just happens.
I still have ups and downs. I am only human. But my downs are getting shorter and shorter. And my ups are feeling so much more natural.
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Get Discounts Below!