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Hey loves!
 
Hope everyone is doing schnazy. It’s been so incredibly warm the last few days and I’m loving it. Hoping it’ll last through the weekend since last weekend I couldn’t enjoy it much because I was competing and also incredibly hungover … balance.
 
I have a couple of updates for you all.
 
I made this Sausage Lentil Kale soup the other day because I wasn’t feeling well and it turned out amazing. I honestly surprised myself with how tasty (and easy) it was! Check it out below.
 
I know I promised a new podcast episode soon (which hasn’t been the case) but we’re recording today and it’ll be live on itunes this weekend. I’m chatting with my friend, Madeline and it’s going to be a freakin’ riot.
 
I’ve been thinking about putting together a 30-day wellness reset. It’ll be a program to get people back on board with their health goals. I’m assuming space will be limited to keep it intimate and more personable. Any interest? Message or comment and I’ll get something pulled together!
 

 
Alright, so today I want to talk about our health journey and relationships. It’s been a question I’ve received a few times and also something I had to deal with pretty intensely. It can sometimes be difficult to be committed to your goals when those around you may not fully understand or question your motives. It can be equally frustrating as it is tiring. Believe me, I know. So I want to share my take on how I handle certain situations and what I found to be extremely helpful in gaining the support from those closest to you.
 
Situation #1: Dinner parties with family or friends
 
You’ve been invited over to someone’s home and they’re serving food … cue some slight anxiety. The questions start to flood in: I wonder what they’ll be eating? Can I eat anything? What am I going to say if I can’t eat anything? Do I just suck it up and eat?  But here are some tips to dealing with a situation like this that I found helpful:
 
  • If I think I’m going to have a hard time finding anything to eat or feel bad for suggesting other foods, I eat before. I don’t eat a ton, but enough to sustain me. Once I arrive and the food is ready, I will still try to munch on the salad and veggies. I do this to not completely stick out. But be aware that you’ll probably get the question, why aren’t you eating much? I usually just say that I ate a late lunch and I’m not super hungry.
  • If I’m going to a family event or a close friends, I’ll ask what I can bring. If they don’t say anything (I’ll usually jokingly demand that I bring something), I’ll still bring something – usually a really heavy salad (lots of veggies, protein, potatoes, etc.) or an appetizer (that I could potentially eat a ton of if there’s nothing else I can eat).
Situation #4: Eating out with family or friends
  • The dreaded restaurant conundrum. Most people would say, order the salad. But I hate salads. I usually go straight to the meats or burgers – ask for them to be prepared naked (no sauce/seasoning/cheese/bun) and go with steamed vegetables or a baked sweet potato. This won’t leave you starving and you’ll feel good about it.
Situation #2: Feeling rude for not eating
  • There are going to be times where you didn’t plan ahead and the food being served is not happening for you. First and foremost know that it is totally ok. Remember, it’s your body, your health, your choice. It’s still hard for me to ration with that sometimes. And I still feel rude. But I’ve found that in a situation like this, being completely honest is the best response. I’ve been having some issues and really trying to clean up my diet. Also know that the host or hostess may feel bad that you’re not eating (I mean, I would too!) Be conscious of that and let them know that you’re truly fine and are just excited and happy to be enjoying the company.
Situation #3: Being questioned for your choices
  • People are going to question, shame and make you feel guilty. And it sucks. But if you can try and look past their seemingly rude demeanor, know that they may just be confused (or wish they too had that motivation). Instead of responding negatively or letting it affect you, you can do two things: 1. Educate or 2. Joke. I’ve honestly found that to be the best response to questioning or guilting.  
     

    1. Let them know why you’re making these choices. I’ve explained to family members before that I can’t eat certain foods because I react badly from them. But I’ve found a lot of success in eliminating them and trying new foods. They respond so positively from this and begin to ask more (positive) questions about my journey and choices.
    2. Some people don’t want to be taught so the next option is to joke. I can’t even count the amount of times I’ve responded with a sly sarcastic joke. And that’s ok, too. Remember, remember, remember: it’s your health, so it’s your choice.
Here are a few other tips, depending on the situation and your comfort level with it:
 
  • If I’m super comfortable (say, at my Grandparents) I’ll just bring a seasoned piece of meat (like salmon) and pop it in the oven when I get there. Eat the salad/veggies. They’ve been around me enough though to know that I usually do that.
  • Lean on your support systems. It sounds a little passive and it doesn’t happen often, but sometimes it just gets tiring and stressful to continue to have to explain yourself over and over and over again. Because my support system understands WHY I have to eat this way (and have heard it all from me) they usually don’t have a problem telling someone on my behalf or speaking to their family about it pre-event.
  • Be honest – let friends and family know that you’re going through some changes, or really trying to stay committed to your goals – by putting it out there, it’ll be clear and present and the foods you eat or don’t eat may not be as questioned.

Again, always remember that it’s YOUR body.  It’s not always going to be easy, and some people won’t completely understand and that’s ok. It’s ok to be selfish to your health. You’re given that right. Even the people who love you may joke around or poke fun – but stand diligent and be prepared.
 

Sausage Lentil Kale Soup


Ingredients
sausage lentil kale soup
  • 1 box organic chicken broth
  • 1/2 c dry red wine
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp ground thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh herbs (I used a combination of rosemary, thyme and sage)
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 1 baking potato, diced
  • 1/3 cup diced red onion
  • 2 cups baby kale
  • 1 package organic pork sausage
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 1 tbs olive oil

 

Directions
 
  1. In a dutch oven (or large soup pot): combine broth, wine, cinnamon, cayenne, herbs and garlic. Set heat to low and let simmer.
  2. Slowly add in chopped potato, diced red onion and lentils. Let simmer.
  3. Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat pork sausage until fully cooked, remove from heat and drain excess grease.
  4. Add sausage to dutch oven, stir and let simmer.
  5. Place heat on low, cover and let soup simmer slowly for 20-30 minutes or until lentils are fully cooked through.
  6. Turn off heat, add kale and olive oil. Stir and serve.
  7. Enjoy!

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