*If there is any blog post of mine I want you to read – THIS ONE IS IT. I know it’s a long one but I promise it’s worth it boo.
About a year ago I stepped entirely out of my comfort zone and attended the Hot and Healthy Habits Retreat in Nashville..alone. I tend to be a fairly outgoing person, if I’m around people I know and feel comfortable with. Put me in a room alone with strangers and I am a total introvert. I had previously spoken to many of the attendees online but it’s totally not the same. It took hardly any time before I felt comfortable with this group of amazing women to freely be myself entirely. I’m currently on a flight to my second retreat and I am excitedly awaiting one of the best reunions and weekends ever.
I want to share with the world what I have learned, experienced and taken away from the retreat and this community I’ve been so lucky to be a part of the last several years as it truly has been life changing to me in so many ways.
Do Fresh Work was created by Ander Wilson and Amanda Adams Rowland to educate women (and the world) the importance of balance and self care and that being healthy doesn’t require a diet, a number on the scale or a certain pant size. A few years back they launched an online course called Hot & Healthy Habits (where the name of the retreat originates) and I was lucky enough to be part of their Beta group for this course to test out and provide feedback to provide a better experience for future users.
Our community promotes intuitive eating (IE) and healthy at every size (HAES.) Intuitive Eating put simply is eat what you want, when you want it. Society and diet culture dictate so much information telling us what our weight or BMI should be or how often we need to exercise to be considered “healthy.” I’m here to share with you that it is ALL BULLSHIT.
Have you ever felt like you “fell of the wagon” of a diet? Yeah, we all have. Why? Because diets ARE NOT sustainable – any of them!! Atkins, South Beach, Keto, Clean Eating and yes even Weight Watchers.
We do ourselves more harm by restricting ourselves of certain things (not just food) than what following a diet can actually produce as a positive outcome. When you restrict your body long enough of anything, you end up bingeing it. And I have been there SO.MANY.TIMES….picture this:
You’re really craving something like cookies and have told yourself not to eat them because they “aren’t good for me” or don’t fit whatever stupid f*cking diet you’re on. So you crave and restrict long enough that you end up driving to a store at 9pm on a Tuesday to buy a GD box of Oreo’s and eat about half a container in 5 minutes. Cue self deprivation, a massive stomach ache, feelings of defeat that you just “cheated” on your diet and only brief enjoyment that you actually satisfied that craving. If you had just listened to your body of wanting a cookie or two, you could’ve actually enjoyed those cookies without ANY guilt or stomach ache and moved on with your life.
I guess the bottom line is, anything and everything can be consumed, enjoyed, experienced in moderation. These thoughts began around food and exercise and living a healthy lifestyle for me but have transferred into just about every aspect of my life at this point.
I’m not going to lie to you and tell you that escaping diet mentality is easy. It’s not. At all. For starters, the health industry is saturated with marketing to tell you otherwise. I have unfollowed sooo many accounts and subscriptions to help combat this. It’s still hard though. I still find myself checking labels for calories (why?) or feeling guilty that I didn’t make “better” food choices (like what? I mean seriously?!) It usually takes a good vent session to a friend or some journaling to realize I am doing the right thing by doing what is best FOR ME.
This is all very much still a process for me but I hope to write and share more along the way. We all deserve to be happy and feel confident in ourselves and our bodies. Diet culture wants to tell us we aren’t healthy or we are too fat or skinny or whatever stupid idea that doesn’t fit their slogan. Push that out of your mind, sight and social media feed and come to the other side with me!
TLDR: Takeaways from the retreat:
- If you can be anything in this world, be kind. We have zero clue what others’ struggles are in life so spread kindness and understanding. We all have our shit!
- Being healthy doesn’t mean you have to workout 5x a week, wear a size 2 or not eat sugar and sweets. What doe your labs say? Are you moving your body? How do you FEEL mentally and physically?
- BALANCE IS EVERYTHING!
- Self care should be at the top of your priority list, every freaking day.
- F**K diets!!
About to start an amazing weekend but will update with pics and resources later.