Thursday, July 27, 2017

My Thoughts After One Week Vegan

Another long blogging break and I really don't have a reason why. I am less busy and have scaled back on a lot of responsibilities to just slow down a bit. I am enjoying going to work (remember my 1.5 hour commute in the morning and 2 hour commute home on a good day) and being able to come home and just relax. I think it has improved my overall mental and emotional health and allowed me to make myself a priority again. I can't and won't do what I did to myself the last year or so. As someone said to me Shonda Rhimes had her year of yes, you need a year of NO! I agree, I have been more thoughtful in how and with whom I spend my time with and will keep that in mind going forward! Its all about self care.

Oh yeah! Chileeeeeeee!!! Imma Vegan!  LOL

Well with that extra time comes extra reading, sleeping and tv watching and I stumbled across this documentary on Netflix called What the Health . It is a lot of information and I would say if you know you don't want to change do not see it. It was very eye opening and someone recommended  I also watch Forks Over Knives both explain the benefits of a plant based diet to people, the animals and our planet. I am heart broken over the treatment of the animals. As a lifelong pet owner I was left asking myself what is the difference between that cow or goat we kill and eat and my cat?

They are all animals and none of God's creatures deserve to be treated that way. There really is no humane way to kill a living thing.

On top of the killings the actual conditions also got me. I won't quote some of the information because ultimately I am not trying to gross anyone out or convince anyone to do anything I am just sharing my journey, but I have been literally nauseous for the last week just looking a meat... frozen, raw, cooked any meat has made me physically ill. I can't shake it.

My initial plan was to "lean into it" and try to have seafood but again the smell made me so sick I had to throw a dish I made earlier out and had to jump into the Vegan Lifestyle feet first.

I was also troubled at the money trail as I am calling it. If you follow the money it paints a pretty grim picture and why most of the public has no idea what is really going on. Ignorance is bliss. I had a choice off taking the red or blue pill and I went all the way into the Matrix so I cannot see myself turning back. Especially after watching Earthlings. People are soooo wicked.

I did some research and came across a pretty huge black vegan community online! I have several vegans and vegetarians in  my family; its pretty common in Jamaica actually so it is not a foreign concept to me, even Bob Marley was strictly about his ital food ( Ital cuisine is usually vegetarian or vegan. Developed by Rastafarians, Ital food is a natural way of cooking that tries to avoid processed food, additives, oil, salt and sugar); but never looked into it seriously for myself because honestly I was someone who lived to eat not someone who would eat to live. Hence my battle with obesity. I have been listening to a lot of Law of Attraction weight loss You Tube videos by Abraham Hicks and this actually seems like the next natural step. I will do a different post on that but as Esther said --kinda like after the "There is no spoon" scene from the Matrix when Morpheus told Neo when to time comes you won't have to dodge the bullets... I'm am evolving and coming into alignment. HOW EXCITING! The Universe makes no mistakes. God's timing is perfect and I am here for all of this good stuff!!

A/w my favorite find was the Brown Vegan! She's awesome and I really loved what she posted on Instagram and saw she had an online Vegan 101 training program called Zero to Vegan. It was on sale for only $7 and so I purchased it and started going through the program immediately. Part of the package includes a private Facebook group as well and I jumped right in.  Ideally they say you can slowly convert but I didn't have that option with the nausea so here we are at Week 1 already! I really like the course it is very informative and she has some great recipes.

My initial thoughts...

1) Its a lot easier than I thought between apps, IG, Facebook and the Vegan community IRL and online there is a lot of support and sharing. Baltimore has a very active Black Vegan community! As well as several well known vegan restaurants like Land of Kush which I've tried before since it is near my law school. There's a new one called The GruB Factory and closer to home we have The Flying Avocado. I like cooking so does my husband so I think options (at home or eating out) will not be a big issue.

2)  My skin is jacked up. Lots of break outs but this is basically a "Daniel Fast"  (shout out to the church folk) and my old church used to do one every year so I am not shocked. You tend to get breakouts. I think between having done Daniel Fasts, Paleo and Whole 30 I know how to live this lifestyle so that is a plus.

3) Energy seems the same but sleep definitely feels better.

4) I don't feel full but I don't feel hungry. I was telling my husband last night I feel like the food isn't hitting the bottom of my stomach like with meat. But I do not miss feeling weighed down either.

5) The reactions!!! LOL People are angry/rude/ condescending about those of us giving up meat. I mean that is truly laughable. I will never get people who do that. I was saying to my husband the other day I am the kind of friend if my friend wants to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge I will be sure to buy the best bungee cords, check the wind speed and be there to take the cool pics. Why do people relish in being so negative?

It kind of reminds me of something someone told me once about my overzealous ways in groups. I always say do you, I'll do me... I am not judging but when I say I am going to do something I give it 110% but she pointed out when you do so much it highlights for others what they are not doing and that is uncomfortable for some people. Fair enough. I stated earlier and to others I am not here to convert anyone. We are all doing the best we can, with where we are and with what we know. So there should be no judgement on other side in my opinion.

In the immortal words of Jay Z "What you eat don't make me..."

Ok so some pics of the week. Please see my CyliaFitAndFab Instagram page for recipes! Everything came from Trader Joe's or Target. A quick google search for Vegan options at any store and you can find a great list. So helpful. So here are a few items

I am trying to do a mix of plant based and non GMO items to make a well rounded diet. Here are some helpful videos I just ordered Russell Simmons book The Happy Vegan and I am so impressed with his interviews here is one ~~> Today Show: Russell Simmons Perks of being a Vegan

Oprah did a special program with her staff Oprah's Staff Goes Vegan

Its all very eye opening and I am enjoying it! My workouts are on track and I will still be going to Weight Watchers for accountability because health and weight loss are still goals aside from everything. I weigh in Saturday but I can see based on tracking these points can still add up between the beans, starchy veggies, and high calories but good fat items like hummus, nuts and avocados add up!

Ok I'm out! I will be back to update this weekend!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Janet is my hero

Wait March.... *counting my fingers* Dang 3 months! My bad. I have been super, stupid busy with lots of other things besides my health... and it shows. I ain't been on... no plan or program... I tried to do a Whole 30 reset for one week I made it like 24 hours...barely. I made it back to the gym for like 3 days and my goal was 30. I've just been too stressed and preoccupied I mean all good things and working on good causes but am I not the best cause to work on? Its like that saying you cant pour from an empty cup. I am running on E.

I'm scattered with too many pots on the fire or however the saying goes... I'm Jamaican so I mix those sayings up. LOL

I am taking a lot of things off my plate. I need time to myself. My diet and workout plan re-starts tomorrow... I am going away on vacation for my birthday to my happy place for a total break. I am taking a sabbatical from social media something I've never done not even with the Lent folks. I'm going to get a tan, swim, eat fresh fruits, meditate, journal, read, sleep and then mid week enjoy time with family. I can't wait. In the mean while... My Goal...


 Eat clean, exercise and journal

Just like my hero Janet Jackson... Janet done lost 50 pounds in 5 months

It sounds soooo easyyyyyy... well mind over matter.. My daily affirmation will be "It is easy..."
And it is if you make time for yourself and your health. I've done it before. 

I don't like the way I feel right now. I feel sluggish and like I'm dragging. Its so silly when I do right, I feel right but this is easy in a way... eating what I want, drinking what I want, doing what I want. But its all about priorities and setting myself up for success. 

I'm done with my pep talk because at the end of the day I know talking only goes so far.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

That's not swagger...

DUDE!!! OMG I AM SO SORE!! I'm tipping toeing around my office like I'm in six inch stilettos but 1) I'm in flats 2) I'm boycotting all heels from now on except my I'm With Her kitten heels and I ain't shamed lol

I went back to my Personal Trainer Charles "Chizel It" Harris yesterday. So nuff said. I actually went back to the gym Saturday too and took his Chizel It class and it was just as hard as I remembered. I really wanted to do 45-1 hour every day but that's just not realistic for my schedule so to take the added stress off I'm shooting for 3-4 days a week for at least one hour.

I also went back to Weight Watchers. Ultimately I eat too much so I need structure and Smart Points gives me that structure. There's a new group leader and she is very nice. The one thing I noticed was she didn't look like most WW leaders. She mentioned being 10 pounds away from her goal. That set off an alarm. Well wouldn't you know it another change WW made was you can be a group leader as long as you lost 10% of your body weight and kept it off for 12 weeks! I was shocked but told her I remembered losing a lot of weight like 40 or 50 pounds and being told I could not be a leader unless I was in my proper height weight range which for me was 103-130 pounds!

TALK ABOUT NON-GOALS. I shared how someone who lost like 15 pounds came and became a leader and people kept telling me they could learn more from me than her and I took it off my vision board! I got to give WW  their props. That was a smart smart move. I will never be 103-130 pounds I'm just not built like that. There are people who can get there and those that want to get there I would not be willing or able to do what I would have to to get there and stay there. I'm ok with that. There's genetics involved and while I do not have a lot of heavy people in my family I feel like I clearly stayed longer in line while prepping for my assignment on earth  for things like IQ, good looks and modesty lol vs a fast metabolism. This is my thing so I have to work harder for half the results of others. I've made peace with it.

I don't like that I've been paying WW for like 4 months and not going to meetings. I could have donated that to a charity. So I was up 9 pounds. Not terrible. I can see it in my face. My pre pregnancy goal is now only 26 pounds!

The new leader is doing a Traveling journal so I volunteer to take it with me this week. Very cool concept. It was good to read the other entries and I'm filling mine week out so others can enjoy, learn and benefit from my week.

So there's that and I'm feeling good about this week. I like the app but I do think writing things down gives a more impactful visual lol 

So what's it about babies that get folks all riled up?! I mean I mention starting a family it seems like I dunno what. I had a conversation with two of my friends about a public vs a more private approach to this journey. 

I am pretty much an open book I think I stay away from some topics as a general rule but I never consider parenthood one of them that would need strict privacy. 

Some women/families I don't even know are pregnant until I get a baby shower invitation lol others take you along to every ultrasound. I guess I'll find a happy medium. 

As my guy friend said "When you put yourself out there you open yourself up to others,people's opinions." That's a fact. 
He added (I rephrased it lol) not everyone wants to see you "win" and they don't deserve to be in the audience.
That is also a fact.

I really struggled with this when I was dating because I was pretty open about my highs and lows over the years and I was always so encouraged when I saw loving couples I knew it inspired me to stay open to love. But I'll be dang gone if I posted a rant folks wouldn't be in my inbox, text on my post asking if it was relationship related . Like I can't have a bad day that's not man related??!! Lol 

Ultimately I was MORE public when it felt right and the positive feedback I received was enough to outweigh the negative. I have a lot of people who thank me for being open about my journey. Not saying that's for everyone but I'll talk more about that in my book.

I feel like being over 40, attempting to be a first time mother, career driven, active in the community and a pretty ambitious person I'm pretty relatable. The one thing I noticed about motherhood is there's a lot of secrets like I shouldn't be 41 and just learning about how Mom's suck snot out of babies noses!!! THAT IS A NASTY LITTLE SECRET. I call Motherhood a cult kinda like marriage when you are on the outside looking in you have no clue and women are not giving up information like that either! 

Let me say this I got off script with the snot sucking... My other friend voiced concerns all the possible problems that can occur and that being public. I was saying to her I totally missed that it was a thing to keep private lol I see now based on my social media research it's a thing like you don't tell people you are pregnant until the second trimester  (whenever that is) but Instagram goes ablaze after 11 weeks if you hashtag #BabyAnnouncement lol 

This totally reminds me of dating. I was saying to someone who was encouraging me to start now that now doesn't work for me. End of summer is my goal and I'm really in a good place where if it happens beautiful if it doesn't it's not God's will for our life I can accept that too.  Im not one of those girls who was planning a wedding as a teenager. I'm not a woman who would feel my life would be incomplete or I would feel less than if I could not have a child. I didn't know if I even wanted to be married until I was 33 and didn't know I wanted a child until I was 35. A Soror once said that while she was happy being a wife and mother she could totally see a parallel existence that would not have included marriage and kids and thinks her life could have been fulfilling and happy all the same. That always stuck with me. That's not a bad thing. It's not a thing most women would say at least not out loud lol but I'm living a great life right now and could totally see going this path and still experiencing joy and peace and love and a great life.

I felt like this when I said I was really ready to be married. I submitted to God's will and told Him "Lord I want to be married (here's my list of 120 things on my Soulmate Secret list lol) if it's not in your perfect will for my life I completely accept that and trust you Lord. Amen" I did add on the end "But I do want to get married so don't trip" Lol File that under Jesus is my Homeboy 

So that's that kids are a blessing, it's an awesome responsibility and in addition to cleaning dirty diapers you have to suck snot from their noses. 

Doesn't that make you want to go out and buy your Momma a house or a fancy car lol no wonder football players always give the "Love you Mom" shout out on TV lol 

So a girlfriend a few years ago suggested I blog this experience so I will in doses.

I mean there are 13 year olds out here with no education and no jobs becoming mothers so I'm just going to try and not over-think it.

I missed 7 countries since January in an effort to save leave. I cancelled at $300 airline ticket to South African in September in hope of things going well. You know I'm a founding member of the #PassportMafia so ish just got real...


Monday, March 13, 2017

Andddddd we're back... Oh baby!

Goodness it's already 2017! March 2017 at that. Time is flying. Lots of things going on. Good no great things. I was elected as the Vice President of my sorority chapter! Huge deal for me since that position coordinates the community service activities. It's been great so far. A lot of work but so worth it.

I'm up on the scale to my pre-Fall Whole 30 weight. To be honest I wasn't even trying to do right but kept the weight mostly off until the new year but today I woke up with lower back pain. I got up got dressed and went to the gym. Enough is enough. I'm not sure why I've been so unmotivated. Life is good I'm not feeling depressed or anxious I've been busy but what's new?! I guess I just need to do it and so I did. Last year I set a goal with my doctor to lose 30 pounds a pre-pregancy diet she called it. She said it's pretty common and so I got almost half way there then tapped out. Hmmm maybe there's a correlation... lol

I swear life is like that commercial that talks about when you get used to one stage you move on to the next. Maybe that's what I'm feeling. I'm loving this stage. I'm comfortable and truly enjoying myself.

So family planning has me motivates to lose these 30 pounds. My health is good but as always my weight is in need of improvement. So here we are. Had a great workout. Did 30 minutes on the elliptical and low and behold Planet Fitness does free 30 minute  group training sessions! I stumbled upon the class this morning and it was great! I'm going back to my personal trainer Charles  next week and I  set a goal of losing 30 pounds by September 2017. That's 5 pounds a month. Aggressive but doable.

So I did some major shopping at Trader Joe's and Wegman's and got a new pair of sneakers. They are calling for snow tomorrow so it will be an at home workout and I'm committed to at least 45 minutes to one hour per day.  Food is critical so I'm going back to Weight Watchers even though I've been paying for months without going. But that's the past... today is a new day not going to dwell on that!