MONDAY MOTIVATION: 5 WAYS TO SHAKE UP YOUR DIET

Happy Monday! I woke up at 5, had a client at 6, and then walked home at 7. Ben was getting ready to head to the gym, so I quickly changed my shirt and walked to Starbucks with him, where his iced coffee was waiting for him, and he introduced me to his Starbucks 'Guy,' Matthew. WTF? Here I thought I was the Starbucks Star in our house... Apparently not...

So, I've been home from Greece exactly a week today, and I'm just now STARTING to feel I'm getting back into the swing of things, with one major exception. I'm dealing with a setback right now. I haven't talked about this on the blog, but I have mild scoliosis and live mostly pain-free, but every few years it seems to rear its ugly head. In college, I had bad back pain and went to the clinic, where the doctor there gave me some mysterious medicine shrink wrapped in plastic, like candy. To this day I have no idea what the hell it was, but I took it and the pain disappeared. In 2012, when I was doing a lot of SoulCycle, the pain came back and I went to a chiropractor for 6 weeks, and the pain went away again. In 2014, right after my mom died, I had so much neck and shoulder pain from the grief; there were days I literally couldn't pick my head up. I went to physical therapy for 6 weeks, and voila, better.

So there's definitely a pattern when it comes to my back, and I'm always careful. But shit happens, and now I have a bulging disc in my lumbar spine. UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I just finished my pack of high dosage anti-inflammatory steroids and I'm in physical therapy. This could be so much worse and I'm grateful that the issue is solvable without surgery. But it definitely put a damper on our vacation and it's putting a serious cramp in my style. I haven't been exercising because I'd rather wait until I get clearance from my doctor. It's not worth it to me. But I'm going a little crazy right now. 

Getting to or being at your idea weight comes from two factors: diet and exercise. So if you're not seeing the scale budge but feel like you're giving it your all in the gym, here are 5 ways to shake up your diet.

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1. Eliminate something. At the beginning of this year, I cut out grains for two weeks and it pretty much changed my life. I have since learned that my body much prefers to live without gluten. I'm not celiac but there's no denying how much my joints ache after having bread or most any other kind of grain. I feel awful! Currently I'm trying to live without dairy as well which is much more challenging for me. If you're thinking of going Paleo, trying Whole30, or something else along those lines, consider eliminating one thing (grains, dairy, or gluten perhaps) for two weeks and seeing how you feel.

2. Redefine your 'healthy' choices. Health is subjective, and the foods you choose should reflect what you want in your life, whether that's to sleep better, lose weight or gain mass. The more I talk to clients, the more I realize that we could all stand to scrutinize what we're eating (how on earth did Kind bars and avocado toast get the reps of "superfoods"...) and rethink some of our choices. Personally, I'm no longer buying gluten-free cereals because I realized it was a mindless food for me and wasn't really giving me anything other than something to munch on when I was bored. What foods in your refrigerator or pantry could you stand to replace?

3. Change your meal scheme. Right now I'm trying to focus on eating three square meals, because I feel like when I eat mini meals, I end up eating more than I need because I'm eating every few hours.

4. Cut out alcohol. This is everyone's least favorite, but I highly recommend trying this. Give yourself a set amount of time. If you're not quite ready to delve into Whole30, make your own 'Semi30' and cut out alcohol and one other thing for a month. Chances are you'll see a difference in how you look, feel and perform in 30 days!

5. Follow me on Snapchat. Here's the shameless plug you've been waiting for! I post most of my meals on Snapchat (username = teddisetgo). I see that some of you have been screen-shotting my meals which excites me. That's awesome. I eat a lot of different things (mostly Paleo/Paleo-ish) that I hope will inspire you in your own kitchen. Screen shot away! But if you screen shot a selfie of me, like someone did on Saturday, I will block you. Because that's just odd.

P.S. The first photo is the view we had from breakfast each day at our resort in Santorini and the second photo is takeout from Pitogyros (and the best tzatziki I've ever had!). I miss pita, but I do not miss how sluggish I felt after eating it... 

Gluten. You bastard.