Lets recap the last 5 weeks of our Fitness Friday’s.
In week 1 I introduced the long forgotten, calorie burning, toosh tightening and heart pumping friend called the stairs. We partnered this with portion control and the beauty in being conscious of how much and what you’re actually eating.
Week 2 brought a game of Pick-Up-Sticks in which we labeled popsicle sticks with different workouts that are placed in a jar. This little set up encourages you to pull one out and get on it! The nutrition thought of that week was to keep your food as close to its original state as possible!
The dirty secret of Aspartame was revealed in Week 3 along with its side effects and my challenge to avoid it for 7 days. Hopefully you felt better! During those 7 days I reminded us of the cheap and easy workout of walking. Go for a long walk or simply park farther from the front door, but get your feet moving!
After attacking the Aspartame challenge, we set out to limit all sugars in Week 4. It’s amazing how sweet whole foods can be when the processed junk is eliminated from our taste buds. For the physical challenge, I linked you to a convenient workout link from Self.com
Week 5 brought attention to something we all have, posture! I truly hope most of you gave a valid try to at least be more aware of how you stand, sit and sleep… it makes a difference! This post was also about food prep, the simple task that makes eating healthy so much easier.
This week I want to discuss hunger. We think we know what it is, where it comes from and how to cure it…. but let’s look into it a bit deeper.
Webster dictionary says hunger is a feeling of discomfort or weakness caused by lack of food, coupled with the desire to eat.
What does hunger feel like? For most of us, you have experienced at least one or all of these symptoms; Fatigue, hunger pangs, nausea, irritability (aka “hangry”), headache, emptiness and difficulty concentrating.
What causes hunger? The obvious answer is lack of food. The deeper answer might get you thinking before you take your next bite. All of our senses can trigger an idea of hunger, some examples:
Sight – “I wasn’t hungry until I saw that crepe!”
Smell – “I know we just ate lunch but that Cinnabon smells so good!”
Sound – “Is that popcorn I hear popping? Scrumptious!”
Taste – “Didn’t think I could eat anymore until I tasted the coconut cream pie!”
Touch – “It’s so hot out, ice cream would be so cold and yummy right now!”
Even if we’re not in need of more nutrients, the above examples show how we can deceive ourselves into believing so.
Our brain is also a powerful helper in convincing us that we need food, if it be a memory, association, the simple thought of a food or most common… emotions.
To sum up an awesome book I read called Mindful Eating, there are 5 types of hunger. If we can distinguish between them, our relationship with food will become healthy and more clear.
Here are the types of hunger we have all experienced:
Mouth hunger – maybe you call it a sweet tooth or craving, no matter what you title it, this doesn’t mean you’re hungry.
Stomach hunger – notice if you’re stomach is full or not after each bite.
Heart hunger – are you eating from sadness, memories or emotions?
Mind hunger – you KNOW if what you’re about to eat is from hunger or desire, so ask your head, “should I eat this?”
Cellular hunger – to be aware of what the food is doing to your body on a cellular level. The way a brightly colored fresh salad might feel compared to a tan bun with a brown hamburger inside. What it takes to filter a sugary drink compared to the hydration you get from pure water.
Now since you know the different ways our body can be triggered into thinking (or truly being) hungry, here are 3 questions to ask yourself at 3 different times. You’ll ask the following before you take your first bite, again in the middle of your meal and once more at the end.
1. What type of hunger do I have? (Review the 5 types and find the one matching yours. This will better help decide a healthy decision.)
Fun fact: my husband and I will openly say, “I’ve got mouth hunger!” This occurs most often during a Netflix night or a road trip.
2. Will eating help meet my hunger? (Am I full or just continuing to eat for social, emotional or boredom reasons?)
3. What type of food, if any, would best satisfy my hunger? (Is another bite worth it and if so, is this specific bite of food what I need?)
So there you have it friends. Quite a bit of food for thought (pun intended). If this topic intrigues you farther than my blog, please take a look at the book. It’s an easy read that introduces a fresh way of connecting to what fuels your body.The physical challenge for this week is basic but brilliant! Add a set of reps of anything to your daily routine. Make things that don’t usually belong a new part of your habits. Examples:
-10 squats every time you go to the bathroom.
-20 pushups when you get out of bed and 20 more before you go to bed.
-50 jumping jacks before you turn on the TV and 50 more when it goes off.
-Stand on your toes while doing the dishes or brushing your teeth.
-Hold a plank while you’re scanning Facebook.
-Throw in some crunches before every shower.
Those are just a few examples but feel free to fill in your own numbers and actions. You’d be surprised how you’ll feel at the end of the day!