At 9 months postpartum, and 37 years of age, this mother of 3 was feeling tired. And not just the type of tired that comes with being a mother of 3, but the type that can’t be cured by sleeping in, or going to bed at 8 o’clock with the kids. It was a fatigue that was all encompassing and fueled by 2 strong cups of French press coffee a day. Besides the fatigue, I was experiencing chronic back pain that sometimes left me so miserable at night I could hardly sleep, and in general, I just didn’t feel right.
For months I told myself my body was still just adjusting, after giving birth to my 3rd child, but the longer it went on, the more I felt like I needed to try and do something to remedy this situation of feeling just crappy overall. Especially since I exercised on a regular basis. Emotionally and spiritually, I was happy, in love with my baby, and felt a sense of peace with how our family of 5 was settling into this new life, but physically I felt worse than I knew I should.
By chance one day, I read a book review of Gwyneth Paltrow’s new book It’s All Good, and the subtitle of the book, Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great, couldn’t help but catch my attention. Now I’ll admit that Gwyneth Paltrow is one of my least favorite celebrities. You can read exactly why here. But I’ll also admit that the woman has taste and talent, and most anything she does is all good. So I hunted down a copy of the cookbook at a not-so-local library, and have been cooking up a storm since, for the past few weeks now.
Many of the recipes are simple and delicious, and are getting me to cook dairy-free, vegan, gluten free, and sometimes even sugar-free without even thinking about it. This way of cooking intimidated me beyond belief before, but Gwynnie and her co-author Julia Turshen have broken it down into a format and have created recipes that are relatable and delicious. Most everything comes off without a hitch, but there have been the occasional cooking disasters. Overall, it’s getting me to truly explore the world of clean eating, something I’ve longed to do for a while but always been terrified to delve into.
She also got me to stop paying $8 per juice at the local hipster juice bar, and pushed me to start making my own fresh pressed juices on an almost daily basis.
I’m excited to share my journey with you all, as I navigate my way through trying to make some healthy lifestyle changes that will hopefully help me feel as spry as I did in my early 30′s, and look as good as Gwyneth. In my column here, I’ll not only talk about the recipes I create from the book, but will also cover exercise, juicing, the cost involved in moving to this healthier way of life, and the fumbles along the way. And let’s not forget about the family. I’ll be sharing details of my struggles to get them hooked off of frozen waffles and spreadable margarine.
So did Gwyneth really get me to make all these changes? Yes, and no. I’ve always been interested in healthy eating, and always tried my best to cook and offer a balanced diet to my family. But that diet has always been laced with Costco sized tubs of spreadable margarine and bags of potato chips. I allowed these things because as a family, we’re active and healthy, so why not indulge? Gwyneth is getting me to see though, that clean eating can be an indulgence too, and not torture, as I always thought it to be. While she still drives me a bit crazy, with her urgings to get me to buy $9 boxes of salt, and make cookies that cost over $20 per batch, one way or another she’s gotten me to love being in the kitchen again, and even try Vegenaise. I can’t wait to share my adventures with you here on Babble, and discuss all the things that Gwyneth is making me do.
If you’re interested, you can follow me on Instagram @gwynethmademedoit to see all the things I’m cooking up, and struggling with on a daily basis.