This is the third part of a series on my wellness journey working with Val from Equestrian Wellness.  I will be talking about our calls, homework and my results over this series of articles.  Perhaps seeing my journey will help you begin your own journey to paying attention to your own wellness (either with Val, or with another coach).

Call #3 was all about the observations of the food diary…and there were some HUGE realizations for me.  Most of those revolved around how I ate when I didn’t get much sleep the night before because of the baby.  Funny how not sleeping makes you unable to control your snacking impulses and you just feel ravenous.  Knowing that it was sleep my body was craving and not that popcorn or chocolate chip cookie is helpful on those days.  I now know that food will not actually solve the problem.  Only a nap will (though sometimes it is certainly easier to grab a cookie…).

One thing I really liked that Val said about eating  (I was embarrassed by the gelato I had for lunch one day…) was that I should think about it like “quality over quantity” for food.  That I should consider instead how food feels rather than how many calories are in it.  When you eat, you should feel good and enjoy eating the food.  If that is gelato, then that’s fine.

We also discussed a particular emotional problem I had with food that many have…and that is feeling guilty about not cleaning your plate.  This went along with the previous discussion…that it’s how you feel eating the food an how you are enjoying it.  Becoming a healthier eater is all about changing habits.  The biggest and most important change I’ve gotten from our talks is this:

The first few bites of anything taste the best.  After that, you’re just eating.  If you’re not really enjoying that pasta anymore, you don’t have to eat the rest of it out of obligation.  Eat to satisfaction and really pay attention to when you start to feel full vs. just eating because it’s there.   

This is a big item of homework for me…for life.

We then went over a big obvious thing in my daily eating that needed to be addressed.  And that was simply that I needed to mix it up for breakfast.  I have…almost religiously…eaten the same exact cereal with soy milk for breakfast for years and years and years.  I rarely eat anything else.  My homework this next week was to continue my diary and go shopping and find other interesting things to try for breakfast that would satisfy me and also be quick and easy.  The goal was to eat something new every day.

She also asked me to consider adding more green veggies to my diet based on what she was seeing.  There was plenty of fruit in there, but not many green veggies.

That coming weekend I had a horse show, so that would be an interesting test of my adjustments I had made so far.