So what does it mean to eat well and live wild?
For me, it’s simply a way of living that keeps you healthy, happy, and adventurous!
Eating well is about fueling your body with food and nutrients that are optimal for energy and performance. Your body is an incredible organism. Every second of the day, trillions of cells are working hard to ensure that your blood is flowing, your brain is pulsing with electricity, your muscles are moving, your digestion is regular, you can breathe, feel, and not just fight off illness but heal yourself. What an amazingly tough and delicate system that keeps us all alive. Eating well is the first step to ensuring that your body has everything it needs to thrive while minimalizing the intake of what creates the opposite effect.
For most of my life until recently I’ve been a “meat-eater” or rather just “normal” in the eyes of society. I grew up knowing very little about nutrition and health. I’ve seen family, friends, teachers, idols, celebrities, and even myself in and out the hospital for various “conditions.” The thought that we’re all doomed to be sick from a list of “hereditary” and “incurable” diseases bothered me. I started to become more interested in preventative medicine, rather than reactive.
For the last several years I’ve attempted pescatarianism, vegetarianism and veganism here and there, but not very seriously. I would go for a few weeks and then buy a chicken burrito one day and give up. Once I’d “fail” I’d think, “I guess this could never be me.” Those times I tried, I wasn’t truly prepared. I had no idea what I was doing, no help or support. I thought by “failing” it meant it wasn’t right for me. Somehow though, I could never quite let it go. It was always in the back of my mind that “eventually,” or “someday,” I’d be “strong enough” to make the commitment.
My last semester of college I took a rhetoric class that was required for my minor in communication studies. I put it off because I heard how difficult it was. I had no idea that class and my professor would completely change the direction of my life. She was a vegan feminist teaching about Socrates, The Sophists, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Quintillian, Madeleine de Scudéry, Habermas, Burke, Foucault, Debord, and other great thought leaders of the world. I became enthralled with each new perspective and gained a deeper understanding of myself and society. I learned to think critically about the influences that were affecting my own life. I spent time reading about veganism on the internet, talking with other vegans in my class, and considering the reasons why this might be the right decision for me. Finally, the choice to become vegan felt empowering and natural, rather than daunting and unattainable.
It’s important to note that I didn’t just wake up one day and say, “OK, I’m vegan now.” Honestly, it was an accumulation of all the practice and research I put into it. So what was the best advice I got through this process? You don’t have to be perfect, especially when you’re starting out. It sounds simple, but for some reason this really clicked with me. I was so worried about being the perfect vegan or claiming to be something I truly wasn’t yet, that I let it stop me from trying. The reality is, sometimes you’re going to cheat, sometimes you’re going to make a mistake, sometimes you’re going to eat something completely on accident! Unless you’re cooking 100% of your meals, it can be difficult to be sure. What I found is that once I adopted the idea that it’s ok if I slip up now and again, I’ve actually followed through with my goal and I’m more motivated and committed to this lifestyle than ever before. In fact, I’ve fallen in love with it and I hope you do to!
After graduating college and separating from the army at the same time, I had this realization of freedom. I spent so much time working towards that moment; contemplating what it would be like, where I would go next, what I really wanted out of life. It was liberating and terrifying all at the same time. I knew what I was passionate about; good food, good coffee, good company, and traveling the world. I wanted life to be an adventure, something I embraced at a young age. I was always the one wandering off on family trips (oops) and getting into trouble for one thing or another. For some reason, I just felt compelled to explore a little further.
My first experience leaving the country was when my high school Spanish teacher took five of us on a trip to England, France, and Spain to visit beautiful destinations in London, Paris, Barcelona, and Madrid. I fell in love with everything; the art, architecture, food, people, scenery, late nights, early mornings, train rides, all of it. Experiencing life from others’ perspectives was a blessing. It opened the door to begin to understand and appreciate cultures other than my own. Since then I’ve been to many more countries, traveling with family, friends, and even solo! I chose to live wild, to take risks and make changes that would push me forward on this path. Eat Well Live Wild is an expression of that choice, and hopefully for you it’s inspiration to do the same. By taking care of this vessel we exist in, we can harness our power to reach our goals and find happiness not in the end but in the journey.
So what’s the big idea?
My goal is to provide delicious plant-based recipes that are easy to follow and require little time or thought! My hope is that anyone who stumbles on my page can replicate a recipe without much (or any) kitchen experience. I’ve found one of the toughest aspects of being plant-based is the limited amount of options when going out to eat. What I love is that it’s forced me to learn how to cook amazing food at home. Now I save tons of money and typically prefer my own food to restaurants! (I do still have my favorites of course.) As someone who is still relatively new to the plant-based lifestyle I hope to give a fresh perspective for those of you considering the switch, and some renewed inspiration for those who’ve stayed dedicated! I also plan to share with you tips on traveling, backpacking, and road tripping including recommended destinations and how to save money and get the best deals! Have questions? Let me know and I’ll try to post a blog to answer them! Here’s to your health, happiness, and adventures!
Eat Well & Live Wild 😊