10.3.12

The Secret to Being Skinny

We look in magazines every day and see all the thin, lean models. Every single one of us, whether you'll admit it or not, is thinking, "I waant that...I neeeed that...Life would be so much easier if i were skinny."

Let's be real for a sec. EVERY girl has gone through that thought process before. But we have to be real with ourselves.

First, not everyone was born with the naturally lean, skinny, stick-like body. I am one of those people, and it took me a while to accept it, but i did. Some of us just have more athletic bodies. THIS IS NOT A BAD THING. Being strong is NEVER a bad thing. It's just not as natural to be super super thin.

Again, this is NOT a bad thing.

Second, as women, it's easy to start to think about unhealthy things we can do to get skinny really fast. You know exactly what I'm talking about. It's like weird diets and eating disorder and being flaunted in our faces. if we aren't careful we'll start making stupid choices. I'm not going to lie to you, when I'm really desperate, I've had momentary thoughts about them. But just as fast as the thought pops in my head, I dismiss it. I'd never EVER do anything to harm my body, I PROMISE YOU.

However, I am guilty of the extreme diet experimentation. If you know me, you know I'm really into nutrition. And while Vegan or Vegetarian diets are perceived to be extremely healthy and help in weight loss, I just couldn't ever EVER go without meat. Because of this, i know i'll never ever in a thousand years even attempt either of these.

Over the last year, I've researched and tried a few diets I thought would change my body significantly, but they turned out to actually hurt me instead. Let me share these experiences with you:

'The Master Cleanse'
You've heard the the 'Master Cleanse', also known as the 'Lemonade Diet'. I've tried this multiple times. If you've been reading my blog for any significant amount of time, you've seen me start and stop this diet probably 5 times. How the diet works is you use certain laxative teas or a salt water flush to clean out your intestines, then you drink a lemon-based drink that tricks your body into thinking it's getting the nutrition you need while giving you the minimum amount of vitamins and minerals your body needs to function. After your body is cleansed, and you're no longer getting any real nutrition, your body starts to use its own mass to function. Thats how the weight loss happens. The most success I ever had with this diet is when I did it for a complete 3 days. It was the worst 3 days of my life, I tell you. AND I didn't lose any weight. BUT I will tell you something, after those 3 days, I felt healthier and replenished. Every time I ended that diet, I promised myself I'd never diet ever again. Then the next time I wanted to do it, I just convinced myself I was strong enough to handle it. When I'd fail once again, I'd look back on the promise I had made myself and just feel terrible. So I decided to give it up once and for all. I threw away my natural maple syrup, cayenne pepper pills, and deleted this gross desperate thing from my life.

Here's an article released by WebMD about why you should never do this diet ever ever. http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-lemonade-diet-master-cleanse-diet


The 'Eat Practically Nothing' Diet
You know those girls who are super tiny and can't hardly finish a whole In-n-Out Burger? Those girls make me sick. Those are the girls that make us think the way to get skinny is by not eating a whole lot. This is freaking borderline Anorexia and it is NOT a good thing. I thought, "hey, the whole thing to losing weight is burning more calories than you're consuming right? So I'll just eat a lot less calories than I will burn in the gym." HOLY MOLY was I wrong. This was probably one of the dumbest decisions I've ever made in my whole life. Here's basically how it went: Small breakfast, small snack, more small snack, lunch?, snack, some sorry excuse for dinner, and basically eating everything in site after 8 PM. Just terrible terrible all over epic fail.

The Smoothie Diet
This one made sense to me. Throw fruits, vegetables, and all the spinach i could find altogether, and BLEND! I actually really really liked this. Everything i put in my body was not only good for me, but absolutely delicious! (minus a few smoothies in which i overloaded on greek yogurt and ended up drinking a sour, brown, weird textured drink through a straw). This went on for about 2 weeks straight. This happened only last month, at the busiest time of my life. SO, being able to whip up a smoothie was kind of convenient! But before I even realized what had happened, I had lived 2 weeks on Spinach  Smoothies and Clif Bars. Probably the most unbalanced diet i had ever been on. Not only that, but i didn't go to the gym for 3 weeks. THREE WEEKS. ahh.
Moral of this story? Smoothies are good, yeah. But not for every meal all the time, and not only accompanied by a sugar-filled energy bar. (scam alert!)

So...
After year of this, i realized something. The times I think I've looked best, or the times when I've been in the best shape of my life, were NOT the times I was doing these weird diets. The times when I was healthiest, strongest, and happiest, were when I wasn't trying so hard to be losing weight, but just being conscious of what I was eating, and just living with a healthy lifestyle.



Here's the secret...
You want to know the real secret to 'being skinny' or as I'd like to say, 'being strong'? It's to stop thinking about being skinny and focus on being healthy. Eat the right foods. Exercise. Get enough sleep. I know you're thinking, 'NO THATS NOT ENOUGH!' Well, have you tried it? Here are some tips that might help you out.

1. Sleep is important. I know we're in college and we don't sleep at all. I'm probably worst at this. I'm a late to bed-early to rise type person. When you get enough sleep, you're prepared to accomplish what you want to the next day, and have the energy and motivation to achieve your goals. Here are some atricles about how sleep can help you in weight loss and staying healthy:

http://www.livestrong.com/article/119644-importance-sleep-weight-loss/
http://www.livestrong.com/article/213540-how-much-sleep-do-you-need-when-losing-weight/
http://www.livestrong.com/article/366526-exercise-lack-of-sleep/

2. Eating Healthy is easier than you thought. It's easy to make excuses like, 'healthy food is so expensive...' or 'I don't know how to make healthy meals...'. LIES. There are HUNDREDS of 'healthy eating' blogs and websites that will ROCK YOUR WORLD if you even read them. Not only that, but ALLrecipies has a phone app that will help you find quick meals to make with the stuff you already have. Download it here --> http://allrecipes.com/features/applications/dinner-spinner/

3. Small things make a BIG difference. There are small things you can change about your diet that will make not only make you feel better, but will benefit your body as well.


First: Don't eat late at night. As a college student, this is probably the hardest thing. The late night mexican food runs. Late night study sessions when you need a snack, and the closest thing is whatever you can find in the school vending machines. Not eating after 8 or 9 (depending on when you go to sleep) will make a WORLDS of difference. It's not necessarily that you're eating late at night (there are some debates about this) but the fact that when you eat late at night, your choices are significantly less healthy, and it just makes you feel like crud.

Second: Stop drinking soda. I don't know exactly why it's bad for you, but trust me, it is. I'll have a soda every once in a while because hey, I'm young! But i feel sick for the next few days. I promise you if you stop drinking soda on a regular basis, you'll feel better.

3. How to eat Breakfast. Be careful what you eat when you wake up. Protein (eggs) will make it so you are less hungry throughout the day. Not only that but eating a good source of fiber will fill you up fast. And it doesn't help to get some kind of sugary fruit in your system to start off the day!

4. Consistent Exercise. Going hard at the gym once a week or every once in a while will get you nowhere except in your bed the next morning because you're too sore to get up and walk to your statistics class. If you to the gym on a constant schedule, you'll see results. This doesn't mean go to the gym every day, go hard for about two hours, and be tired for the rest of your life. An hour a day is fine. 15 Minutes of free weights, 30 minutes of cardio, and a few minutes of stretching. Try going at least 3-4 days a week. Even if you just do cardio for 20 minutes a day, it'll a difference in your body. I PROMISE.

I'm NO expert at any of this stuff. I'm not professionally qualified. These are all the things i've learned from my own life that have helped me be healthy!
Okay now that i've flooded you with more nutrition information than you'd ever want to hear from me, I'd just encourage you to research on your own and learn what things are good for you, why they're good for you, and easy things that will fit your lifestyle!

(if you have any questions about this stuff or any other fitness stuff, ask away! I can't promise I'll know it, but I know some great sources!)


4 comments:

  1. You know, I was just looking at your facebook and thinking how beautiful you are. Lucky! ;) Great post, Brooke

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  2. great post! i definitely struggle with this because i love to eat! and i have yet to find the balance and self control i need but this was a huge help and great motivation! it's good to know i'm not the only one :)

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  3. Thank you for this post, Brooke. It was great to share it with my teenage daughter when she started talking about some of the dumb habits and diets that her friends are trying. Much appreciated!

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  4. Hey Brooke thanks for being so down to earth with the truth on being skinny. Your story sounds a lot like my life and after 13 years after trying everything and not succeeding at them I finally started the healthy living but you gave me the details I needed to continue. Thanks again!

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