Note: You can sign up for the Clean Eating Boot Camp here, completely free!
Let’s make it happen, y’all!
Yes, yes, y’all… welcome!
It is with great pleasure that I introduce you to Clean Eating Boot Camp 2013, converting you from microwaveable heat-n-eat lovers to full blown “Wow, you should have your own cooking show!” all-star chefs.
I’m a staunch advocate for clean eating for anyone who is trying to overcome an emotional eating habit, anyone who wants to lose weight and anyone who simply wants to learn to eat healthier and live a little bit closer to the Earth.
(Oh, you thought I wasn’t going to slip my Earth Mother schtick in here? Chile….)
The reality is that, while there are many people who grew up without making the unhealthy connections to and habits involving processed food, people who can healthily manage their weight and control themselves and their health; I’d also have to surmise that a great deal of us struggle, and for those of us who can admit to struggling, clean eating can be a viable way to overcome that struggle.
I don’t know about you, but my battle with emotional eating was preventing me from being able to, really… be free. I didn’t ever think about being happy or doing things that specifically made me happy anywhere near as much as I thought about using food to make me happy, and it was partly because of the food I was eating, and secondarily because of the way the food was engineered to make me feel. I became addicted to it. I struggled with being able to control myself and I blamed myself for my behavior and my inability to do what, apparently, so many others around me could do.
Removing the processed foods from my life, learning how to cook, understanding and developing a taste for food from different cultures, being able to appreciate what food truly is and what it does… man, listen. I feel free. I feel so unafraid to walk in my kitchen, grab whatever I feel like, and go to work. I feel so unafraid to nourish my body. I don’t feel shame or guilt when I actually enjoy what I’m eating. I don’t have to fear my ability to experience pleasure from food. All of these hang ups I had, all of a sudden weren’t anywhere near as important as they’d once felt. It made it so much easier to move forward.
Now, I’m much smaller, much healthier, much more fit and I have different goals. I’m on a completely different career path. I’m working towards my first real competition – yes, still… building muscle takes time, man! – but now, with certifications under my belt, I’m more capable of sharing how I’ve done what I’ve done, how it works, and how others can use clean eating to their advantage and make it happen.
As a nutritionist, I can now talk about food in a different way. I have more tools to help people get the understanding they need. I have greater understanding. Aside from coming up on my own personal five year anniversary of beginning my journey, I’m also celebrating my new-found abilities.
This version of the boot camp, I’m gonna make you eat the damn vegetables. I’m gonna teach you to buy seasonal because it’s cheapest. I’m teaching you how to cook those seasonal vegetables. I’m gonna tell you to buy a butternut squash, and I’m gonna teach you to roast that bad boy so well that it tastes like sweet potato. I might even tell you to drop some blue cheese crumbles on top of it. (Afraid to work with fresh cheeses? We’ll talk about that, too.) And only a few crumbles, because quite frankly blue cheese is not, in fact, cheap. (That’s another clean eating tip: spice up inexpensive veggies by using high quality, flavorful additions sparingly. Mmhmm.)
I’m also gonna tell you what that butternut squash can do for your hair, your skin and your colon. I’m gonna show you how to sautee it, and I’m gonna tell you that, if you don’t have inexpensive butternut squash near you, you can always get it on sale and frozen one place in particular.
I’m gonna tell you that it goes great with that god-forsaken kale that everyone struggles with. I’m gonna tell you that it’s a great quick lunch with chickpeas. And, I’m also gonna tell you that it tastes magical. And, if you still don’t like it, that’s okay. I’ll tell you how to spice it in different ways so that you CAN like it and use its cheap ass to your benefit. It doesn’t matter. You’re gonna eat it, though.
This isn’t a four-week-long program. It’s several weeks. It might even be a few months, but we’re all going to do it together. Complete with check-ins and progress reports, good and bad.
And, for this first week, we’re going to shoot for one glass of water every hour. It doesn’t matter the size, it doesn’t matter how much. Just make sure that, for every hour, you’re getting in at LEAST one glass. Set an alarm on your phone, something. Anything. But get in that water!
And, if you want a head’s up on next week’s challenge, here’s the question for the day: how many days a week do you eat fast food or dine out?