My Journey to Health

I am a little buzzed off of this endorphin-high right now, so pardon my enthusiasm. I just took a kick-ass spin/core/stretch class at Results Fitness Nashville (only THE best).

On the way home I was realizing how it is officially holiday season already. Which makes everyone all sentimental and all that ooey-gooey stuff that I totally feel too. I was thinking about how the best gift I am going to have this holiday season is health.

A year ago I moved into my current apartment, began learning a lot about nutrition, and began “training” myself. I was greatly encouraged by a friend who was studying personal training. I worked out for hours a day. I started eating strategic meals, focusing on what specific foods and nutrients my body NEEDED to recover and perform. I then found a gym that has inspired me 10 times more. They have kicked my butt, changed my body, & encouraged my passion.

One extremely important point is that I was never aiming for skinny or a certain weight. My goal is health. I  was careful along the way to never starve my body or over-work it. That wont give you health. My favorite foods are chocolate & tex-mex/southwestern. I still eat those all of the time! But I cook at home with whole, organic foods and just have about 1 oz of dark chocolate. 🙂

A year ago, I was at my heaviest weight of my life, that I can recall. I felt beautiful, and I was beautiful. I have always loved having curves and have no desire to be thin, but I knew I wasn’t my healthiest. Now, I am an ATHLETE. I was the girl who skipped PE in high school & wore very unflattering clothes haha. Now, fitness is fun for me. Before, I was scared to run, honestly, but now its therapeutic! I am constantly challenging myself, which was never part of my personality before.

I decided that in 2012 I was not going to let fear have any hold on my life. THIS WAS THE BEST DECISION I HAVE MADE in my 24 years (Ok, following Jesus as the ultimate best!). At this point, I am nearly fearless. Which makes life so much more peaceful & joyful. It is easier to discover new passions!

I also made this a year of “self-care” in ALL aspects of health. I make sure I get great rest. I take time for ME. That has become a necessity. I can’t tell you how important it is to sloowww down your schedule. I am putting my Trust in Jesus & my spiritual growth is a top priority. I am learning new things. I spend time with friends & family. My family has been so greatly blessed this year. We have never been closer. I am so grateful for the things we have learned this year. Most importantly that family is there to support you.

I hope that others can be inspired to pursue things that they have wanted to do for years. I prayed for probably 10 years that God would be my strength & teach me the discipline to get healthy. His timing has been PERFECT. His blessings have been unbelievable. I have been gifted with so many wonderful people and things in my life that got me here. I am so grateful!

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….Now I will got rinse off this sweat I’ve been sitting in. ew. 🙂

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Healthified Broccoli Slaw

I had broccoli slaw for the first time a couple weeks ago at my cousins bridal shower. I DO NOT normally like raw broccoli. It’s one of the few foods I can’t handle (raw at least), but this stuff is amazing!! I love to edit recipes to make them actually GOOD for you so that you can enjoy them often. I focus on proteins, healthy fats, and good-for-you carbs. The original recipe says to serve it immediately, but I prefer it the next day when the broccoli softens a little and the flavors are more united. I encourage the use of organic food items, but do as you wish! I will warn you now, I kind of “wing” recipes, I rarely measure when I make my own stuff and I don’t really get as detailed as some. Sorry 🙂 Feel free to make your own changes and let me know what you like! Here is the link of the original recipe I used:

http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/crunchy-broccoli-slaw-10000001875871/

Here is my Version:

  • 8 slices turkey bacon (I like Applegate Farms)
  • 1 large head broccoli
  • 1 small red onion, minced (1/2 cup)
  • 1/3 cup raisins (golden or regular)
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt (I used Stoneyfield)
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Cook turkey bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crispy. Cut into small pieces.
  2. Cut florets from broccoli stems and chop into small pieces. I cut them pretty small.
  3. In a bowl, mix greek yogurt, honey, and vinegar until evenly mixed. (I actually bought regular balsamic vinegar instead of WHITE as the original recipe called for, but it still tasted great!) Add broccoli, bacon,  raisins, and onion. Mix well. Add salt & pepper to taste.

Pardon my iPhone picture 🙂

I get most of my original recipes from Pinterest (I am slightly obsessed. ok, extremely). Follow me on Pinterest to see my health, food, drinks, fashion, and inspirational pins! http://pinterest.com/leighminnigan/

Side note: I started a program to become a Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Nutrition Specialist about 3 weeks ago. I am LOVING it! I hope to take the Exam by January. I am doing it with the National Academy of Sports Medicine. I am so excited about this new part of my journey, that I have quickly become so passionate about.

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