My dad frequently reminds me, "Olivia, most people eat to live, but you...you live to eat."
That's the truth. I love food. I always have and I always will.
It is quite apparent that food--as tasty as it can be--is also our own worst enemy. With any substance, abuse has the potential to cause harm or kill you. That's the reality of the modern American diet, which is made up of 70-percent processed "foods."
I believe eating food in its natural, pure form can not only cure the obesity epidemic, but can also alleviate daily struggles found in learning disabilities, anxiety, depression, stress and much more.
Another drug is not the answer. The answer is proper nutrition.
I learned the importance of health at a young age. My mom rarely let junk food in the house; she bought mostly organic foods and even all-natural deodorant. My friends had Fruit RolI-Ups in their lunch boxes, and I had sliced apples. She promoted a preservative-free diet ever since I can remember. Although healthy eating was ingrained in my lifestyle, I didn't understand the value of nutrition until recently.
Seemingly a bit "thicker" than girls my age, I dabbled in fad diets since 14. I have tried every diet imaginable. I lost weight on some, while I didn't on others. Regardless of my weight loss, I always gained it all back and more once I would return to normal eating habits.
I entered my freshman year of college at a healthy weight. After one too many nights of partying and late-night pizza deliveries, my body decided the "Freshman 15" wasn't enough, and I gained 23 pounds by the summer.
I was miserable, lethargic, overslept and constantly sick. It was not how much I weighed that made me feel this way; it was what I was putting into my body.
Over the following two years, my weight continued to fluctuate and it directly coincided with the structure of my life at that moment. When I was very involved in student organizations, I tended to perform better in my classes, eat healthier and exercise more often. On the contrary, when I would go out more often, my grades would suffer, as well as my diet, weight and overall happiness.
I have learned over the years that life is all about creating a balance fit for your lifestyle. You must be happy with yourself first before you can try to please those around you.
Start by finding your why. Why do you want to change? What drives you? Who motivates you? Find your why.
Liv Lang and Prosper is dedicated to help you lead a healthier lifestyle, change bad habits and develop beneficial behaviors. With each post--tip, recipe, workout, whatever it may be--I try to include an educational tidbit.
As a society, we must self-educate more about nutrition, fitness and wellness. And I'm here to help you. One, because it makes me happy and two, I have a lot of endorphins built up from lifting iron things (dumbbells). Oh, and I like to write, cook and eat a lot.
This past year, I set a goal to compete in a National Physique Committee (NPC) bodybuilding competition in the bikini division. Through a little blood, a lot of sweat and even some tears, I accomplished what I had once only dreamed of doing.
It's not about winning or losing, it's about letting go of your limits, expectations and negativity and finding your inner strength. Challenge your mind, body and soul.
Why? Because you CAN and you will.
Eat healthy. Be happy. LivFit.