You can look on any of my social platforms and see that I’ve been living this Paleo life for SEVEN years! It’s something that I write down but still can’t believe it at times. I vividly remember the first few days of being Paleo and how hard it seemed at first. I constantly said, “I miss the crunch!” Basically, meaning crackers and chips and anything that wasn’t a squishy grilled vegetable! I never thought at that moment that this was something that would truly become a lifestyle for me. It wasn’t the plan- not even close. We were supposed to hit it hard for thirty days and then be done.
However, a week later everything changed. EVERYTHING.
At the time, I was teaching at a homeschool co-op and would stop and get a Starbucks drink and pastry every-single-morning. Yep. I’d tell you about my Braum’s obsession but I think one confession is enough for now!
Okay, so clearly all that stopped when my husband and I started the Paleo Challenge, and the sugar detox was rough. But let me jump back to my car ride to work after I got my cute little coffee drink real quick. I would sit in the parking lot sipping on it, waiting until the last minute to do my… mascara! No lie. I had the WORST allergies in the morning and seriously would sneeze uncontrollably for the first hour of my morning. It sounds like no big deal but it sucked, y’all. I would be a red nosed watery-eyed snotty mess by the time I got to work and it would take a while to come out of that fog. Anyone with allergies (not the seasonal kind- the every freaking day rain-or-shine kind) knows exactly what I’m talking about! So, that’s why the mascara had to wait… that and I needed a few minutes before walking into a super toxic work environment!
Anyways, heading into week two of our Paleo journey, I remember grabbing my mascara to take with me like always, but this time there was no sneezing or watery eyes and I felt like I saw everything so clearly for the first time in years! Everything was crystal and I felt like a film was removed that I didn’t even know was there. My head was so clear and I felt better than I ever had.
Now If you can’t relate to the allergy struggle, then maybe the migraines will be more your speed. OH mercy. I would take allergies over these beasts any day but lucky me I had both. I had chronic migraines through college and into a year into our marriage. Not the kind that you can pop a pill for, but the ones that take you out at the knees. At least once a week, I would crawl into bed with a frozen water bottle on my neck, the highest dose of Excedrin and a prayer that I would make it through (dramatic much?) The pain was unreal and I had no way of telling what triggered them at the time. I would try everything and even included a food journal to see if something would stand out.
I missed a lot of life dealing with these and what do you know, PALEO FREAKING STOPPED THESE as well. I had no idea that nutrition (or lack of) would be the answer. Of course the first week of detoxing was rough and my head pounded a lot so I can’t say it was instant- but I’m telling you now, I can count on one hand how many migraines I’ve had since! Let me spell that out a little more. I went from having debilitating migraines once a week for about 3 years to having THREE in seven years.
I’m not crying, you are. No seriously,
I get emotional thinking about how much my life has changed and how I owe every breath I have to making sure people know that they don’t have to feel like complete garbage. Cue the coaching certification and previous four years of teaching people what I’ve learned!
Now, I place this last because I think most people would agree that living with some extra weight is doable, but when you feel like crap, that’s just the WORST. The weight loss. I tried to lose weight in many, many, many different ways but nothing worked. From eating “healthy,” cutting out sodas, hiring a personal trainer, not eating… and that list just goes south from there, nothing worked. I wasn’t morbidly obese but I was miserable in my body and had a good fifty extra pounds hanging around in places it didn’t belong. Part of the Paleo Challenge is to not weigh yourself until the very end… but I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t wait. I don’t remember when, but I’ll never forget where I was when I first stepped on the scale and saw results that made my jaw drop. I had lost eighteen pounds in less than thirty days! I couldn’t believe it- of course I re-weighed right before my twin sister and I walked into a pilates class. Feeling better about myself than I ever had, I knew my life was finally changing.
Fast forward to Thanksgiving (just two months into Paleo) and my husband and I were both down thirty-five+ pounds.
So what’s my motivation? It’s written above in a lot of words but basically because I FEEL amazing, I’m living my best life, I’m not on prescriptions constantly, and I don’t despise what I see in the mirror. I have a husband and toddler who need me at my best and future babies that need a mama who cares more about herself than a double scoop of cappuccino chocolate chunk ice cream with m&ms. Oh shoot. Looks like I snuck that confession in after all.
At eighteen years old, I learned that life is too dang short to live mediocrely and unhappily. At twenty-one, I changed all of that and started living life ABUNDANTLY (by the grace and strength from Jesus-Hallelujah.)
Which life are you living?