I am now home from my semester-long study abroad experience in Spain and my travels around Europe and am transitioning back into normal life here in the states.
When I got back, I was hit with a terrible sinus infection which made it hard to come back with all of the energy and vigor that I wanted to, but have since gotten much better.
I went through a period of a good 4-5 days where I really missed my life in Spain; all of the pretty sights and the endless things to do and see, which I’m sure I will always miss, but I am feeling better now and more adjusted. I am settling into my routine at home, enjoying working; teaching yoga, barre, and other group fitness classes, along with helping with Chiropractic rehab at North Suburban Healthcare. [Located in Coon Rapids, MN – shameless plug – come see us for all of your chiropractic and wellness needs].
While I was in Spain, my host mom was doing all of my cooking, and I made the decision to just “let go” and eat basically whatever was served to me for those four months. I am so glad that I did; I tried and learned so much, and was able to bond with my host mom over food and cooking. She taught me to make a couple of my favorite Spanish dishes like Tortilla, Paella, and the typical dish from our town of Segovia, Judiones de la Granja. If I make any of them I will make sure to share photos 🙂
I really stayed quite healthy during my trip, avoiding the sicknesses that were passed around my group, only to get sick right as I was coming back (after I had run out of my Vitamin D and Zinc supplements…hmm).
Although I stayed generally healthy, the out-of-the-norm eating combined with my lack of access to a gym while I was there led to me gaining about 8 pounds by the time that I had come back. While not anything too extreme, I did not feel my healthiest or like the way my body looked as much as I had in the past by the end of the trip. It can be easy to get frustrated or negative about weight gain, but I know that with adopting my normal routine of eating and exercise I will be back to feeling my best in no time.
I believe that a healthy body image is fundamental to mental and overall health, and that is something that I have been working on for a long time. I am currently in a place where while I might not be exactly satisfied with where I am at, I don’t allow myself to fixate or get down about it. I know what I need to do to change it, and positive thoughts are so key in that process.
Upon coming back to to States, I have decided to transition to a gluten-free and dairy free lifestyle in order to (hopefully) help me achieve some of my health goals, which are NOT simply loosing the 8 pounds that I happened to have gained. I started with the first meal that I had once I got off the plane (Chipotle) and have kept it up ever since, wiiith a couple of cheats. So far I have lost about 5 pounds (its amazing what happens when you quit eating bread with every meal and start working on building muscle again) and I feel great. I am definitely not perfect with it, but I am going to do my best for at least a month and see what happens. Gluten free and dairy free is something that I have felt the need to do for a very long time but have neglected it until now. I hope to share a bit of my journey in order to help others that currently are or are considering making this change to their lifestyle as well. Stay tuned for my next post where I will explain why I chose to make this transition with my eating, which is not focused on the scale, but overall HEALTH.
Thanks for reading!
May you love your body and fuel it well.