Another year has been and gone and new one is upon us. There is definitely something about the New Year that really makes you think and reflect on the previous year and how you are living your life in general. Aspirations, desires to be better, brighter, happier, healthier than the previous one. The New Year does bring a sense of freshness with it, the opportunity for us all to start over, do better, be better.
That brings me to the question many people ask…so are your making any New Year Resolutions?..
- a firm decision to do or not do something.
- the quality of being determined or resolute
Sheesh, it really is pretty black and white when you look at it like that isn’t it and so many of us throw out the New Year Resolutions left, right and centre without really thinking about what’s involved to really achieve them…
Do you make them? New Year Resolutions? In previous years I always managed to conjure up a resolution or two when 1st Jan comes around. The usual ones like, I’ll lose that 5 kgs, I will exercise more, eat less crappy food, drink less coffee blah blah….pretty flaky really when I look at them. Of course, don’t get me wrong….we probably all drink too much coffee, could trim down a kg or two, move our bodies more and eat much cleaner. But I wonder more and more, why didn’t I stick to resolutions in years gone by. It’s pretty simple really, there was no PLAN of attack. I have realised that Goal Setting is what I really need to do…not to just make verbal New Year Resolutions willy nilly. I need to articulate my goals, yes, but more importantly I need to have a have a plan of attack, a strategy on how I will achieve them. So obvious but so many of us don’t have any strategy in place for our resolutions.
As I’ve gotten older I am beginning to think that the whole New Year Resolution thing is a bit of a cop out too. I’m not being negative Nancy here either….I mean, if I want to make a change, really make a change, why on Earth am I waiting until the next year to do this? I can take steps and start to make the change now, right now, today!
Classic example. I have been whinging to my hubby about how little exercise I seem to fit (or not fit) into my life these days. I aim to do my daily home yoga routine but that doesn’t always eventuate. I get out for the odd walk here and there but a woman in her 40s soon realises that the old body needs a bit more than the odd walk and irregular yoga class to keep feeling fit and fabulous. I really do love to exercise but these past few years I have hardly exercised regularly at all.
A few months back I had this compelling urge that I needed to get back into the gym and get myself a gym membership and thought I’d start it in 2017. The last time I joined the gym was well over 10 years ago. I vividly remember how much I loved classes, the buzz I got from the physical movement, lifting weights and cardio training, the strength I felt within my body was so empowering and healthy. Why did I stop doing this exercise? Was it the daily tasks that motherhood encompasses taking over, the amount of energy I needed to expel to run both a household plus put into growing and building my own business….or were these all excuses really? No, not excuses, they are my reality. It was and is also a reality that I love to exercise and that somehow that interest I had managed to slip away and become a distant memory of something I used to love doing once upon a time.
So back to the gym visit, off I went to our local gym. I sussed it out, took my 3 year old daughter with me and we perused the child care area as they offered free child minding as part of the membership. I checked out the gym, classes etc etc….all looked great, really great and for a few moments there I seriously thought about signing up, but….I didn’t. That was back in October.
Hubby came home one afternoon at the beginning of December and presented me with an early Christmas present…a 12 gym month membership. Woohoo, I was so happy! I decided then and there that I will make a 12 week challenge for myself to go 3 times a week. Nearly one month down and I have got to the gym 3 times a week. How have I done this? No more excuses and whinging but putting my energy toward positive thinking and planning!! I’ve allocated in regular classes on regular days, routine routine routine, consistency consistency consistency. It feels soooooo good to have started this “resolution” back in December and not wait until the New Year to get cracking on it, I feel like I’m already winning……I took action and made a plan to make it a habit. Moral of the story? Don’t wait until the New Year to make a change, do it NOW, you will feel so much more empowered and stronger for doing it sooner rather than later.
My other GOAL for 2017
EATING HABITS For the past few years I have been eating a mostly vegetarian diet. I do absolutely love fruit, vegetables, legumes and grains, eating this range of food is easy for me to enjoy. My body flourishes and functions very well when eating fresh whole foods. I feel better, look better, have more energy and am generally happier for doing so. I have been thinking of entirely eating plant based foods and thought again, in 2017 I’ll do it. Why wait though? The only two animal products I eat are occasionally eggs and cheese. I haven’t consumed cows milk products in eons and haven’t missed them one bit. My 4 year old daughter is highly allergic to dairy and eggs so she is a little inspiration to me.
So why “plant based” I hear you say? There are a few reasons I want to eat this way but I’ll keep it to these simple 5 reasons which are propelling me to do this. Let me prelude this by saying I am in no way writing this to place judgement on your eating choices if you do eat meat. Most of my family and friends eat meat and that’s totally ok. The reason I am writing this blog post is to help those that may be interested in switching to a plant based diet and give them my experiences and tips along the way.
Life is all about choice – the choices YOU make are your own. Not mine or anyone else to judge. You own your own choices, they are yours and nobody elses 🙂
Sooooo, back to the 5 main reasons I have decided to remove meat and animal products from my diet….
1) I feel healthier, more energetic and am much happier when I eat this way. I have always thought about what I am about to consume, where did it come from, what was the journey it had to get to my kitchen. When I put those thoughts at the forefront of my mind it easily makes me much more mindful of my food choices and that I want to eat cruelty free food choices.
2) It’s the best way I know how I can help animals. All animals deserve to live, don’t they? Well I think they do.
3) Eating meat genuinely upsets me. The thoughts that go through my head when I see raw and cooked meat is that this flesh was once a living being. This meat is from an animal whose entire life has been scarified to satisfy my hunger for what, a meal which will be devoured in a matter of minutes. That doesn’t sit well in my eyes, my head, my heart and definitely not well in my tummy. Here are some life spans of animals which may surprise you.
Did you know…
- The big beautiful cow has a natural life span of 18-22 years. Mooooooo
- A chicken can live for 8-10 years. Cock-a-doodle-doooo
- The intelligent pig can live up to 10 years. Oink oink, snort, squeal! I LOVE pigs.
- A salmon 4-7 years. Opps, not sure how to write a fish sound. 🙂
- A Barramundi up to 20 years. Far out hey
- A Snapper up to 60 years. I know, 60 years!!
- A Lobster up to 100 years – wow, far out hey, 100 years!
Doing my research and looking into how long the lives were of these animals who are typical meat foods that humans consume across the globe every second, saddened me. I dunno, maybe I think too much. Ohhhh but wait “Michelle, you do realise they are bred to be killed for food don’t you?”….said a family member to me recently. Oh yes, I am well aware of that. So, does that makes it OK then? Silence I was given. It;s simply my choice to not eat meat or animal products. I’m not here to argue the point, to try and convert others to eat a plant based diet or to become an extremist about the topic, absolutely not. Peace people, I’m all about living happy days with good vibrations for the planet and it’s beings.
It is a natural human instinct to avoid pain. I wonder sometimes if some people who do eat meat don’t want to know this sort of information (ie; that animals think, feel, have emotions etc) because it is very confronting and vert upsetting. No one wants to have these upsetting thoughts and to think that they are contributing to this pain. The thought of innocent animals, and let’s face it, that’s what they are, innocent beings who have had their lives created and ended so that their flesh could satisfy humans taste buds for a meal. No thanks, so hence there’ll be no mates on my plates. But again, let me reiterate, your eating choices are of course – your eating choices to make. I simply want to share my thoughts on why I choose to eat a plant based diet.
4) Vegan food is delicious! Ohhh yes, it really is. Don’t knock it til you try it. It’s not just all lettuce and carrots lol! The more colourful the food the better too. So much choice is out there to enjoy. It’s made me much more in tune with food. You expand you food horizons and discover new exciting meals. I’ve always appreciated food but have become more mindful when choosing to eat a plant based diet. It’s just an overall good feeling knowing that there is 100% cruelty free goodness going in and nourishing my body.
5) It’s cleaner in the kitchen! Cooking with meat is messy and grosses me out really. The residual animal fat that remains on the pan when it comes to cleaning up…no thank you. My mindset around how I look at meat has completely changed. It always comes back to the fact that the meat was once a living creature, who could have babies, is a parent, has feelings and emotions and it has been killed to satisfy my hunger for a meal or two. That thought alone just makes me sad and feel sick.
To share my meat and animal product free eating journey for 2017 I’ll post monthly blogs to stay in touch and discuss all things plant based. On these posts I’ll share recipes, food replacements, thoughts and feelings. Speaking of food, you can check out our Red Lentil Curry here!
Do you eat a plant based diet? Was it/is it a difficult transition or are you breezing through it? I’d love to hear from you, please feel free to reach out and discuss.
Until next time,