It's that time of year, for all of us. Some of you are heading into your summer season and will start eating lighter. For me summer is always about more grilled veggies, salads and smoothies - OK and ice-cream.
Further below, I will get into balance so we don't find ourselves so out of whack, that we binge and then pay emotionally for how we've treated ourselves, which can be a direct translation to what we bring to the mat, in a psychic smog kind of way.
For us northern hemisphere folks, and us Americans in particular, we are headed towards winter, heavier foods and Thanksgiving. This is a holiday which I celebrate every day, giving thanks. It just so happens that this year we will spend it with my family. My brother in Louisville, Kentucky loves to cook everything from scratch. He said those magic words that a kid like me loves to hear...I bake the pecan pie and cheesecakes (yes he used an 's' at the end of cheesecake) from scratch.
I was immediately thrust into an adrenalized joy-filled place with these words. Hello addict. Hello, I used to, not so much anymore, eat to numb out my emotions and then I would fast and starve myself and then my recovery program taught me HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired). Don't go into HALT they say. Sometimes, finding that middle ground takes practice.
Here is what I found out about my nutrition plan for my life. I have been through periods of time when I have been raw, vegan, vegetarian, pescetarian, flexitarian. I've thought, I teach yoga and I should do this or I am a bad example of that. Today, I listen to my body and my spirit and love. If we need to talk in numbers. I eat 70% less animal protein than I used to as I consider the lives of everything. I even go so far as to consider what an apple might feel as it's being picked from the very leaves and branches that help it grow. I also consider that sometimes, as I travel the world, people want to share their culture with me. I say thank you for sharing.
Other times, like when I am in teacher training, chicken and fish are an important part of my diet. I've tested it. I've tried other ways. It's even been trialed with some of the trainees. The result is the same. In order for me to maintain a high level of energy and good sleep schedule, that kind of diet is necessary. It keeps me out of HALT too. I am one of those people that needs to remember my top priority is my recovery and that I get to do what I do because I maintain my sobriety.
On top of all this is my love for food and that it should taste great, have fantastic textures that my mouth enjoys and food should feel good on the way down to the belly, as well as in my belly. Yes, we're talking about those 10 desserts some of us will be faced with and yes, I used to eat all 10. I thought giving thanks meant you had to hurt a little, like our fore mothers and fathers, who worked so hard so that we can have this amazing life. So, I choose 2 and I get really present with the people that I am around and completely connect to feeding and satisfying my spirit's emotions. A slice of pecan pie and cheesecake will do that for me. The work for me is to slow down so I can savor all the taste and recognize when I am full.
So this newsletter is an invitation to give yourself some homework, where ever you are in the world and whatever you are celebrating, or even if you choose to not celebrate, check in with what you are eating and why. Check in with quantity and check in with quality and by quality I mean this...I do not like pumpkin pie (except for your's Susan Macy - amazing). So, when faced with pumpkin pie or nothing, it took me a long time to recognize that when I did go for the pumpkin pie, I was discounting the quality of feeding my spirit and never felt satisfied and would often times go out seeking other drugs (pies) to satisfy me. The next day I would just eat watermelon or just drink water as punishment.
Whether you are enjoying cake pops or oatmeal with fruit, which was my breakfast today, pictured above, enjoy and nourish your everything. I just found out that oatmeal converts to sugar and that there are different kinds that are better for you. Instant, not so great; rolled oats are better and steel cut, the best. As you can tell from the picture, as I am trying to do with a lot of my life, I'm looking to sit in the middle, the middle path, find some balance. I work my nutrition the same way I work with everything that has options presented to me....it doesn't have to be this or that, no more black and white thinking. I'm looking for some color in between.
We'll post this newsletter on my website, www.lesleventhalyoga.com, as a blog post so you can refer back to it if you need to for anything in your life that needs this kind of care. When making nutrition choices that might affect allergies or health in general, it is good to consult a nutritionist and/or your doctor.
Also, for information on my 2018 teaching schedule, including registrations for teacher trainings, immersions and retreats, click on my website link above or the picture links below.Be sociable - click below to stay connected with me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and stay tuned for a special holiday sale/gift announcement for my yoga videos, also available on my site.