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Nutrition Bootcamp: The Cheese Wheel Turned into Fondue….and Wine

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Nutrition Boot Camp

nutrition boot campIt’s been a tough six weeks. Not because of the boot camp I was participating in at Saint Mary’s Fitness Center, but because, as often happens, life fell apart. Kids got hurt, I got hurt, family members died, work exploded, tax season came to a nasty head…you get it. That being said, I don’t think it was a complete failure (despite the fact that I barely had time to breathe, let alone blog weekly). While “boot camp” isn’t necessarily the phrase I would use to describe the experience (because when I think “boot camp,” I think hard core, miserable-but-for-a-good-cause, self deprivation and that was definitely not the case here), “educational” certainly sums it up. When I said we were “easing into it” in my last blog….it pretty much stayed at that pace. But….because it wasn’t some crazy, starve-yourself, carbs-are-the-Devil, six-week-long hell; it was easy to stay caught up despite the fact that we both had to miss a few classes. And even better, our instructor Elise made up each of the classes with a one-on-one session for us (and anyone else who couldn’t make it), which was one of my favorite parts and allows each boot camper to get his or her money worth. It allowed us to ask a lot of questions that are specific to our lifestyle and get involved in a deeper conversation that was more applicable to us. It also allowed me a chance to debunk so many of the myths that we tend to get caught up in, especially when we’re working toward any type of goal.

As I said in my previous post, I’m relatively savvy when it comes to food and nutrition and this class really just reinforced the fact that it’s my own fault I’m getting fat. Because despite the level of knowledge I have about food and the fact that I know how to make really good healthy food, I choose not to. I eat like shit. I haven’t been working out and there were at least two fondue appearances during the six-week window (I mean seriously?!? Who eats fondue multiple times in six weeks?!? And don’t forget the bottle [or two] of wine that may or may not have accompanied said pot-o-cheese). So anyway….we screw ourselves. Period. Life is about choices and what you put in your mouth falls into that category. Like we learned on Day 1: it takes 100% effort, not 100% time. The effort is up to you (or in this case, me).

Outside of the fondue, funeral food and large quantity of alcohol that was consumed during said funeral week, we didn’t do too poorly. Elise’s main emphasis was on balance, which I wholeheartedly agree with. Because this extreme, fitness competition-level nutrition and training routine that is everywhere these days is insane and I’m so over it. Plus I have yet to know anyone who has completed that regimen, achieved his or her goal and then stayed with it. All of them immediately went back to their normal routine, gained weight and said “bye bye” to the six pack and spray tan. Point being…it’s not maintainable. And that’s what getting healthy is really about. Maintenance. Not aesthetics. Not deprivation. Not eating plain chicken and steamed vegetables and drinking 120 ounces of water every day for the rest of your life. It’s about having the knowledge to make smart, healthy choices at all times; being able to “shop the pantry” and create a healthy, well-balanced meal; being forced to eat fast food after a long day and knowing how to modify the meal to make it a healthier choice; being able to make your own salad dressing that’s not only healthier than anything you’ll find at the store but tastes better too. This was a focal point of Elise’s curriculum throughout the boot camp and one that really resonated with everyone.

Another one of the most helpful things we learned, which I think really benefited the group as a whole, was the emphasis on avoiding extremes. This point really resonated with me because we talked several times about setting an example with food habits. By talking about all the food you “can’t have,” limiting calories, eliminating foods from your diet and being so hard on yourself that you put yourself into pass/fail categories you are teaching your kids to feel that way about food. It’s important not only to be healthy but to have a healthy relationship with food. Know that sometimes you’re going to eat well and sometimes you’re not and that’s ok. You have to forgive yourself every now and then. One of the phrases that resonated with me most (especially because I have lymphadema and am covered in surgical scars) is “each person, each body.” Essentially, everyone is different; and more importantly, no one is perfect.

If there is only one lesson you take away from St. Mary’s Nutrition Boot Camp it is this one. But fortunately, there were way more helpful tips than just this. In fact, there were so many that this blog became really, really long. So now you can stay tuned for next week’s piece featuring our top tips from Nutrition Boot Camp. And if you’re really excited, you can sign up for the next Boot Camp class that starts Monday, May 18. Tell them Reno Moms Blog sent you…

nutrition boot camp

Series Navigation<< Nutrition Bootcamp: Riding the Cheese Wheel to Success!Nutrition Boot Camp: Top Tips For Shaping Up Your Diet >>

About Betsy McDonald

Betsy McDonald
Betsy McDonald is a soon-to-be wife and stepmother to two teenagers, ages 16 and 14, both of whom are taller than she. She spends her days doing PR, marketing and event planning, and her nights boxing, dancing and attempting a variety of unorthodox work outs that require a little more balance than she actually possesses. In the meantime, she spends plenty of time at Lake Tahoe and is working on perfecting the lacrosse mom persona, golfing, attempting SUP yoga, remodeling a home with her fiancé, planning her wedding, and maintaining the overall health, wealth and happiness of her newly found family. As a child growing up in Nebraska, Betsy’s dad would travel to Lake Tahoe to ski, bringing home pennant flags, T-shirts and a variety of other Reno-Tahoe-related paraphernalia. This prompted her to desire to find out just what “the Biggest Little City in the World” actually meant. By chance, she would end up here thanks to a job transfer to Gardnerville for her mom and the Millennium Scholarship. As a 14-year resident of the Biggest Little City, she’s proud to live and love in Reno. Betsy is an athlete, a writer and a cancer survivor – and hopefully an amazing stepmom. Stay tuned….

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