5 Things I learned From my Nutrition Coach- (My Wellness Journey Part 2)
Wow. I am beyond grateful and amazed at the response to this wellness journey. It’s so crazy to think about how nervous I actually was talking about my journey and you all have been nothing but inspiring sharing your stories with me, supportive of mine, and just all-around kind. I am so lucky to have a community like you all. THANK YOU for being here because we still have a lot to talk about.
You have the backstory and series of events that led me to have a shift in my mindset, so let’s keep working. A critical piece in achieving your fitness goals is actually the diet. I read a statistic one time that said the key to success is 80% diet and 20% exercise, which is usually the opposite of what most people think. (Doing the opposite of what you actually think will work is going to be the theme in this post. You’ll see that more below.)
Intuitive Eating and Reset Diet
I mentioned in my first post a few things I did to change what I was previously doing. I started off with a juice cleanse that was actually more of a reset diet because it did involve food as well. I loved (as much as one can love doing one of these resets) that this really helped me to tune into my body. Am I actually hungry right now? Do I actually need more food? This is called intuitive eating, and I honestly think this first step was a game-changer for me. I used the GunnerMade Reset Diet and followed it exactly for a week. It suggests two weeks, but I knew a week was enough for me.
I continued using this intuitive eating method along with a paleo diet and intermittent fasting (as well as an intense workout schedule). I did start to see results. Not only did I start losing weight, but I began to have more energy. Remember, this is a wellness journey- not just weight loss. I was feeling good and really started to regain my confidence, but I did start to question what I was doing. I’ve never in my entire life believed in any fad “diets” so I wondered if being paleo was a fad diet. Am I doing the right thing for me or am I just messing my metabolism up? My viewpoint on food has always been simple- cut the sugar, eat whole foods, eliminate processed junk, and do it all in moderation. I still have this view point. I still don’t believe in eliminating carbs for the sake of losing weight, however, if a food like grains or gluten is not agreeing with your body, that’s an entirely different story. I wanted to make sure I was on the right path and doing things that are going to help me in the long run, not just in the immediate time.
Isn’t it funny how timing of things work out sometimes? I actually had been following Obsidian Wellness Fitness and Healing because they are a small, local, wellness, fitness, and healing company in Pittsburgh. My friends Brea and Kelly have talked about them on their social media so I knew it was a good company to follow.
As if timing couldn’t be more perfect, Elisabeth, one of the owners, reached out to see if I would be interested in partnering with them. As nervous as I knew I would be to share my story with you all, I knew I wanted to so I opted for working with Matt, Elisabeth’s husband and nutrition coach to fine tune what I had been doing. To be honest, I ended up having a second conversation with Matt and Elisabeth because I was so wishy-washy on the collaboration because it would mean I had to get vulnerable and actually HAVE to tell my story. In true Elisabeth and Matt fashion- they were so encouraging and incredibly supportive on how I wanted to handle my story. They both know what it’s like to struggle with your health and wellness, which is exactly why they are so passionate about what they do. In fact, Matt had actually lost 100 lbs and has kept it off. Even Elisabeth could relate to some of my struggles after having a baby.
5 Things I learned From My Nutrition Coach
There was a lot that went into my nutrition plan that even carried over to my fitness routine. I think that’s one of the best parts about working with Obsidian Wellness- they cover all the bases with mental healing, fitness, nutrition, and overall wellness. You can check out all of their services here including yoga, personal training, and even Reiki.
I opted for the 6 week Nutrition Plan here that was completely tailored to my needs, fitness level, and goals. Matt took the time to have weekly check-ins with me and adjust things as needed.
- The Ideal Diet/Fitness Routine is Like a Puzzle– This could not be more accurate. Every person has different needs and different goals so Matt and I discussed in depth what I was currently doing, eating, and what I wanted to get from a customized plan for me. There is no such thing as a one size fits all plan, so the key to this process it to be patient and sometimes trial and error. With Matt’s knowledge and experience, he helped me adjust my macros as needed and made recommendations based on how I was feeling and energy levels- things I wouldn’t have known how to do on my own.
- Trust the Process– Matt is probably laughing at me while reading this– because I had a really, really difficult time trusting the process. I cannot tell you how many times Matt told me to do this and how many times I resisted wanting to do this. A lot of what I needed to try was opposite of what I was thinking would work. Matt got where I was coming from and so did Elisabeth. They worked with me on baby steps to get me more comfortable with this concept and guided me along the way.
- Maybe You Are Doing Too Much– Is that even possible? The fact is, it could be possible. I was doing very intense workouts for several months. I’m talking lots of cardio, lots of strength training, 5-6 times a week. When we had been a few weeks into the program, Matt kept saying maybe I need to drop down my intensity level. Naturally, I resisted this because I like working out hard. It’s a stress reliever for me and this just seemed like I would be taking myself backwards instead of forward. Eventually, I took these words to heart and I finally took a step back. I still do weights, barre class, and some cardio but definitely on a less intense level. I actually was talking to my husband the other day and was saying how it’s so crazy that I feel like my muscles look more toned now than they had been in a really long time. I have been doing less workouts and less intensity on the workouts. Trust the process.
- What You Were Doing Before Is No Longer Working– Similar to your fitness routine, you have to change up your nutrition. Early on I learned about switching up your fitness routine- I believe it was called muscle confusion so your body doesn’t get too used to what you are doing. Our bodies are pretty incredible because they adapt so well- sometimes too well if they aren’t doing what we want them to do. The same goes with your nutrition. We all know by now you shouldn’t do the same exercises every single day and nutrition falls in line with that. It’s important to remember to switch things up because I’m learning as we get older our bodies have different needs and what worked before may not work now. Matt taught me a lot about figuring out where your “baseline” is – which is the starting point of how many calories you need to function. From there we worked on a few different ways of increasing my metabolism- which involved more calories that I had been used to (YIKES) and then adjusting my macros and caloric intake every couple of weeks. Another “trust the process” moment, but in the end there was certainly progress that was made.
- Be Flexible/Patient– We all know the old quote “Rome wasn’t built in a day,” so you know I’m going to say what you don’t want to hear right now. In a world of instant gratification at the click of a button, changes to your body don’t come instantly. When something isn’t working- as long as you’ve given it a fair chance, change it up. It’s really about trial and error and finding the perfect combination. Then knowing, eventually you’ll have to find a new perfect combination, too. Be flexible.
Keep in mind that the Nutrition plan was built for 6 weeks. I did end up working with Matt for a few more weeks over that plan and gained some very helpful knowledge. My personality is to be such a processor and I’m motivated by progress (even if it is only a little bit). After we completed our last conversation I took a week off to process everything Matt had been telling me and teaching me. I combined that with some of what I was doing before- I went back to Paleo because at the end of the day my body just feels better eliminating most grains from my diet, the majority of the time. Since then, I’ve started to see some progress and I couldn’t be happier. The journey isn’t over yet and I plan to continue to build off the knowledge I’ve gained from working with Obsidian Wellness Fitness and Healing. I’m so grateful for Matt and Elisabeth!