Onward & Upward
My journey started when I was listening to the Hunt Backcountry Podcast, when Kyle was on (Episode 124; May 9th, 2018). In January of 2019, my husband suggested that I listen to it while also asking me to go into the mountains on a hunting trip with him. I weighed in at 194 and was in no shape to keep up with him and I didn’t want to slow him down. In the podcast Kyle said "Contact me through the V2P site." I took the off chance and went to the V2P website and put in my email/message expressing interest in the program. Kyle quickly reached out, and I felt this was my time to get healthy and be able to “keep up with my family” rather than sitting on the sidelines.
I guess I’m a bit unique in the fact that it took me twice to fully succeed.
The first time was learning nutrition; what and how it worked for me. Kyle took me on a simple and easy to use approach by giving me a chart of different foods and how they fit into each of the macro categories. He taught me what a macro is; how to read packaging, and how to balance them out in my nutrition plan and with my home life. For example: I can make a tater tot dish for the whole family and make it work for me rather than wishing I could eat it with them. I can either substitute a serving of veggie tots in place of the regular tots, simply take them off, or pre-plan and budget for them in my macros. Through consistency and repetition, I’ve learned what fits and how to adjust to make it match my macros. I never feel that I can’t have something.
Something that worked well for me was a eating schedule as I tended to forget snacks, which are just as important as your core Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner meals. I use my snacks to help balance my day. If I’m lacking in one of my macro areas in one of the core meals, I balance it out with my snacks. I take pieces and parts of trail mixes or make my own mix based on my macro needs. Sometimes the balance is red licorice or Nutter Butters!
Kyle also taught me to not fear the carb! We, as a society, have always been taught and it has been hammered into our heads that carbs are bad. Nope! They are indeed a fuel for our bodies if used in correct ways. I’ve never been so in love with gummy gears.
My second time started in 2020. I started a journal and fully committed to not only the nutrition, but the mental piece of this journey. I decided I needed to write things down and to fully absorb what I was learning. I started making/measuring goals I could hit, and success soon followed. I started to completely trust the process and had personal growth along the way. I built confidence in myself to “know” the answer, to “know” how I can push past myself and my thoughts.
It’s been quoted a few times that this is 80% mental 20% nutrition. You must believe in yourself, what you’ve learned, and what you are capable of doing. Don’t collapse into crazy.
Learning (discipline portion of the journey created the opportunity to let go and be flexible later) how to use tracking to understand portion sizes.
First step: buy a scale. Once you do you won’t regret it and it’ll be your best friend. For me, the scale really helped with my portions as I can’t just “see” what it should be. I like having that concrete answer. The kids have also found it “fun” to use the scale to weigh things and help me meal prep.
I found that portion sizes are a tricky thing. They don’t “appear” to be that much, then you weigh something. At first when you weigh and track, you never think you’ll be full, but you know what, you’ll be perfect. You won’t feel neglected or starved and on the opposite spectrum you won’t be so over-stuffed that you can’t move. I really enjoy walking away from a meal “content” rather than rolling away from the table. The scale helps me really be cognizant of my choices/portions using the program. I used to think “everyone will stare” and sometimes they do, and I’ve learned that it’s ok. I’ve really learned and embraced the “you do you and I'll do me” motto.
The beauty of all this learning is to adjust the foods to meet your plan. It’s not what you can’t have; it’s how to get it to fit into your plan and lifestyle. It’s not a “quick fix” -it’s a lifelong event.
Where I am now…
Now, I am writing and setting goals all while having confidence to pursue whatever adventure awaits. Sometimes, even leading the family during our walks/hikes. I also went from barely running a mile and struggling to embrace the love of running to missing it when I don’t go. I’ve even set a high cloud 2021 goal to potentially run a half marathon again…. Onwards and Upwards Always.