It’s been a while since I provided you an update on my postpartum progress…or since I posted anything. Let me explain…
Since we last checked in, I am happy to report that many of the issues I had been facing since giving birth to baby Oliver have been resolved. I got back into working out, shed another few pounds, and was starting to feel better about myself…
…until I started to have pain in my right foot. X-rays revealed inflammation around the two small bones in the ball of my foot. After a number of treatments and finally, a minor surgical procedure, my foot is now back to normal. My podiatrist said that the problems were a result of being on my feet too much. A mom with two young boys on her feet too much?! 🙂
In addition to this setback, I have been suffering from a bit of postpartum depression. Despite being physically on the mend, I have many moments of feeling alone, lost, and disappointed in myself when I fail to balance everything in my life with a smile. Over the last few months in particular, this feeling had been intensifying, so in addition to regularly communicating with my doctor, I knew I needed to think more about my body in order to put my mind at ease…literally.
Working out helps to improve my mood immensely. Prior to my foot complications, I was getting up nearly every single morning, no matter how early or how tired, and getting moving before the rest of my family awoke. Thankfully, my podiatrist cleared me to start back up again! Sometimes I go for a jog, other times I complete a circuit on an app that I love, SWORKIT. I heard about SWORKIT on an episode of Shark Tank. It’s free, customizable, and contains a variety of workouts in different categories (Strength, Cardio, etc.). I choose how long I have to work out and can easily achieve a good sweat in just fifteen to twenty minutes.
As you know, working out is only part of the equation. I have found that following a plant-based diet and incorporating exercise into daily life (i.e. walking to the store instead of driving, etc.), I don’t have to work out for long or with an expensive program or gym membership to see results. I also don’t need to count calories or worry about food portions.
You also know that I am a big proponent of consuming a diet composed of primarily raw plants. I am truly happier and more energetic when I chow down a fruit salad or drink a green a smoothie. I’ve noticed that on the mornings I work out after having a heavy cooked dinner the night before, my routine is more difficult and I have to stop for breaks more often.
With that said, increased physical activity comes with a need for more calories, at least for me! So, I’ve been adding a healthy, dense, cooked protein to many of my raw salads or as a side to something else I’m eating: I am currently obsessed with shelled edamame.
Yea, I know, word on the street is you’re not supposed to have too much soy. Remember, my sister lives in Japan, where I’ve seen more tofu, soy sauce, miso, and tempeh in one place than I could ever eat in my lifetime and the Japanese are living long healthy lives, so I’m not going to obsess over it. In Japan, cancer rates are lower and life expectancy is greater…something is clearly going very well over there! Lately, I’ve been consuming roughly a half cup of shelled edamame a day, a few days a week. I’m certain I am ok. 🙂 (Just a reminder that I am not a health care professional. If you’re unsure about consuming soy—or any food, for that matter—ask your doctor.)
Why is this an amazing plant-based snack or meal add-on? For one, edamame is truly a heart-healthy super food. It is loaded with protein, fiber, manganese, copper, and vitamin K. In addition, it is neutral in flavor, so it is adaptable in endless applications. I throw it into salads and wraps containing both fruits and vegetables all the time. It fills me up and provides me with the extra energy I need for increased working out as I continue to tone up my post-baby bod. When I add it to raw plant foods, it’s just what I need to feel a little fuller with more calories to pound through my workout.
So, that’s what I’ve been up to for the past few months: healing, focusing on being happy, working out more, and eating edamame! Oh, and raising those two crazy little boys I have, too. 🙂 Check out these adorable jars of plant-based goodness for Baby Oliver!
Recipe/formula posts (for non-babies!) to return this week!