Signals your body wants to you to know
“Stop looking outside for scraps of pleasure or fulfillment, for validation, security, or love- you have a treasure within that is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.”
-Eckhart Tolle, spiritual teacher, author of ‘The Power of Now’
Easy to say, not always easy to put into practice. Especially as we’re running around, out and about, tasks need to get done, family obligations, work obligations, trip coming up- and you need to fit in time at the gym, focus on not eating that food or those extra glasses of alcohol you enjoy so much, all while also finding time to relax, meditate, and show the world you’re doing just fine. And don’t forget to smile!!
And then ever notice how this backfires? Or works for a little bit then we’re back where we started? That diet you never tried before was supposed to work, and now that you’re going to the gym multiple times a week and still feel/look the same? Super frustrating.. I get that. There are also many diets that pop up that give us hope that this time will be different- Keto, Paleo, low carb, Mediterranean, Atkins, South Beach, Weight Watchers, 5:2 (eat like crap 5 days a week, super healthy & restricted for 2), the Zone, Raw foods, Vegetarian, Pescatarian, Vegan, Intermittent Fasting, Blood Type Diet, etc. These diets can get us started, as what they all generally have in common is a focus on eating whole, unprocessed foods. However, we are all incredibly unique, as none of us have lives or emotions, and sure as heck don’t have the same DNA! The media also pretty much tells us we’re the same, or try to put us into categories- all taken with a grain of (Himalayan) sea salt.
Consider how something like tomatoes are touted to be super healthy and full of antioxidants, but aren’t good for many people because they’re a nightshade and can create inflammation. Coffee is full of antioxidants and supports brain function, but not good for people who can’t metabolize caffeine. Avocados are full of healthy fats, good source of protein, and high in magnesium and B vitamins, all very beneficial to our body (especially our endocrine system), yet some people just don’t like them (I actually didn’t eat them until college) and doesn’t mean there isn’t a plethora of other nutritious foods to consume.
However, what we do have is the ability to listen to our body. Unfortunately what’s not publicized is HOW we can do that. Our body knows the perfect diet, and lifestyle! It can take some trial and error, but when we know how to tune in on what to look for, we realize we have the answers all along:
Inhaling foods- Ever feel like you eat a food, it tastes good, and you want more? Like a lot more- so much so that you’re just beyond chewing right now, it’s just so good, and you can’t stop until you’re pretty close to stuffed? Or beyond that point because you didn’t realize how much you consumed? This is a food acting on your opioid receptors, the same ones that trigger dopamine (your reward hormone) to light up your brain and give you that feeling of alertness. Otherwise known as a drug/food intolerance. It can be a healthy food too like nuts- for example, roasted nuts tend to be in poor quality oils or processed with other ingredients, versus raw nuts. Yes nuts are healthy, but not always in how they’re prepared.
Fatigue post-workout- This is more common than you may think. We’re told to workout, go hard, bootcamps 24/7, yet at some point the number on the scale increases (or doesn’t budge), wonky sleep, food cravings arise, and just more irritable than usual. Stop. Cut down on all that cardio. If you want to go to sleep after a workout, you are stressing your body, increasing cortisol, and our abdomen is 4x more receptive to cortisol (can make us gain weight) than any other place on our body. Exercise like walking, yoga (all but bikram), and pilates will actually be more restorative & decrease cortisol . Consider lifting weights (no more that 5-8 reps with the heaviest weight you can go), which actually increases metabolism over time, as well as a personal trainer too for a program and ensuring proper form.
The diet doesn’t match what you want out of life- Consistency is key when it comes to achieving any health goal. Planting a seed in a garden takes time to grow into it’s final form- and all plants need regular proper resources & care to do so. Like us! ‘Cheating’ on a fad diet or lifestyle can bring up feelings of guilt and self-loathing, versus the empowering feeling of taking responsibility then reflecting that we ate something or pushed too hard in a workout and just don't feel fantastic. What can I do differently next time? What did this bring up? What would it take to regularly feel on top of the world?
This also all brings up something called intrinsic motivation, where we find that unresounding why that no one, or no amount of media can shift us away from what we know about how our body works. Science explains so much to an exponential degree, yet it also can have those same amount of reasons for both why things work and why it doesn’t. Ever notice how you can find the answer to literally anything? The answers we need are within us, and once we get crystal clear, our body responds with more energy, clarity, feeling lighter, better sleep, and not everything seems like a chore. Know this may bring up some stuff and old patterns too- super common. Connect with me on Instagram and Facebook too for additional signals in listening your body, and let me know what’s worked for you!