Eating paleo with guest blogger Amy-May Hunt

Guest post – Why I Eat What I Eat, from Amy at The Creative Fitness Channel

We all know that while being a foodie fan, I’m a bit health conscious. After all, it was only last week that I wrote you a whole post on my relationship with food.

So when I got the opportunity to do a blog swap, who better than Amy-May Hunt from Purely Amy. She’s all about healthier choices and an active lifestyle. Oh, and she likes food! Here she is 🙂

I hope this posts gives you an insight of me personally, and also helps you learn about yourself too. My aim is to make you all accountable for your own bodies, by informing you that your weight is not about your genes or genetics or the fact that you can’t get up and exercise. It’s about what you put into your bodies, by means of food and exercise that shapes who you are, mentally and physically. Double-meaning wrapped up in there.

As you might expect from the title of my site, I’m a fitness fanatic and food addict.

Oh yes, I’ve used the ‘a’ word. The negative connotations on the word addict make it impossible to think anything other than ‘unhealthy’, whether that be of mind or body, but I use the word because… like most people I love food, I (of course) can’t live without it.
That doesn’t mean the choices I make are bad, but that I make a lot of them, I generally eat four or five meals a day and if by some twist of fate you’ve seen my Instagram you’ll know that they’re by no means small meals.

Guest-blogger Amy-May Hunt when she was younger
So, before I get into what I eat and why I eat it, let me tell you about me…

I am 24, I’m a health and fitness blogger/vlogger and foodstagrammer, which involves sitting down for large portions of the day, reading wonderful recipes on sites such as Ellen’s and being inspired to make healthier versions (if possible!) and writing articles for my own and other sites.

Yes, I have been big, I mean real big, like I couldn’t climb stairs without getting out of breath. I have been bulimic, iron deficient and on every diet under the sun. All of these things involve food, all of them changing me and eventually improving my life and my way of thinking and eating. So, of course food became a big part of who I was, it became my enemy and the love of my life at the same time and for a very long time I hated myself for having this addiction that I couldn’t control. I spent years trying to lose weight whilst eating poorly.

So at the end of the negative, sad, slow-mo music…
I’m now 33lbs lighter, a fitness fanatic and lover of food, because…food isn’t a part of my life, it makes my life. It gave me my weight and my self loathing but it also took it away, by making me struggle and educating myself I’m now a happier person and hopefully can help others become happier and healthier too.

Pearl of Wisdom #1: You’ll all have heard this a thousand times: “A healthy lifestyle is 80% healthy eating and 20% active living”. I’m not one for agreeing with, well, anything really, very argumentative and set in my own ways, but this little piece of wonder-dust… Oh my god they got it right!

I have been training like a mad woman for near enough three years. I did Insanity, the hardest workout on dvd, for 14 months and only lost 7lbs. I had calculated my meals and I was only eating 1,600 calories. What was I doing wrong? Eating the wrong foods. I was filling my body up on carbohydrates and dairy products, which I know and have always known my body doesn’t like! Back then though? All I wanted was the low fat, low calorie foods that would fill me up to do my workouts, and not the high energy high fat low carb foods that would fuel me to workout and recover properly.

So, I changed my eating habits and started eating healthily, what’ll ya know.. the weight fell off (I even stopped training for two weeks) because I could, I missed it though my HIIT workouts are the best part of my day, but it made me realise eating healthily was definitely the key and ‘eating healthy’ is different for everyone.

What is ‘Eating healthily’?
For me? It’s about cutting out foods that my body doesn’t like, doesn’t need and probably shouldn’t have. I have reduced carbs. I will never say ‘cut out’ because it’s an impossible feat, whether that’s because I’m drooling over that pizza slice my ever-so-loving partner has left or just because carbs are everywhere, it’s really impossible to cut them out completely (for me).

Eating paleo with guest blogger Amy-May Hunt

So, yes. I’m on a ‘diet’, but that’s because the word diet means “what you eat” – not the meaning that it has come to be “restricted foods to make me lose weight”. We are bombarded in the media to be on certain diets, but you in yourself know what’s good for you to eat, and if you don’t? Then that’s my job to teach you!

My diet is similar to paleo, except for the fact that I really just eat what I want when I feel like it but try and swerve away from processed foods, dairy and grains. Essentially it’s the paleo diet. Why did I choose this one? Like I said earlier, I have always known my body doesn’t like certain foods. Dairy – my body is lactose incapable (not intolerant) so I can’t eat much of it anyway. I can’t really eat greasy foods, my body acts similarly and just wants to get rid of it, not to mention I can’t workout the next day due to it still having an effect on my energy levels. As for grains, they make me painfully bloat and feel sluggish all day. So it just seems like common sense to reduce and exclude these.

Pearl of wisdom #2: With your eating plan, follow the same rules as I have. Note down when you feel rubbish and eventually you’ll work out what foods are a no-no and what foods you should reduce. Be as strict as you want to be but remember a healthy body is a happy one. Punishing yourself will get you nowhere. Positivity will get you to where you want to be.

That being said, Pearl of wisdom #3 I have to repeatedly tell myself, “do I need this?”, “will this get me closer to my goals or further away?”, whilst I’m reaching over the counter for my chocolate hobnobs. I really do think it helps.

A happy, healthy Amy-May Hunt now

In summary, I eat low carb foods. For my height and activity levels, I should consume 1400-1500 calories per day, whereas I consume around 1600-1800 calories a day. I train three times a week HIIT up to 400 calories a session and then a two hour jog. Occasionally me and my Mr. go hiking or rock climbing but really stay quite active. How can I not be a size 4 then? I hope you see where I’m going with this?

Yep, I overeat. Hence the curvy girl look I have going on. Yeah I’m not going for that, I just embrace it. Yes, I have toned arms and slim stomach and can out-bench press all of my guy friends but I have to work out extra hard because I do overeat, too much fruit not enough veg, but that’s just it! I know what is going into my body is healthy but I also know that it’s too much. By making informed decisions, by knowing what decisions you can make, it puts you back in control of your body, in control of your weight and in control of your life.

I’m happy, I’m healthy, I eat cakes (and those chocolate hobnobs!) when I want and I have lazy days too , where I can come on here and write, because if you choose the right foods and the right activity levels, you can do just that!

I hope my story and my pearls of wisdom will help you and inspire you to do what’s right for you, whether that be changing your habits slowly, ripping the bandaid off and just going for it, or whether you’ll start next month. Do it for you, be happy and above all, be healthy.

Amy blogs at Purely Amy. She can be found on Twitter at @AmyCreative_fit, on Instagram at AMYCREATIVE_FIT, and on Facebook at Purely Amy.

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