Hi friends, I’m Alexa!
I am beyond excited to be joining Heidi on “The Hungry Stuntgirl” Blog! Today, I just want to share a little bit about me. Please be forewarned, I am in no way a poetic writer. This sort of thing is actually pretty far out of my comfort zone, BUT HEY, it’s 2020. I think we all know by now anything goes.
I recently graduated from Thomas Jefferson University’s College of Nursing and received my BSN. This past month, I passed my boards and became an RN (phew)! I know my job is going to definitely take an emotional toll on me some days, so what better way to relax than write about what I love most in this world....FOOD!
Honestly, I really would say that I love food more than the average person. I love looking at it, smelling it, cooking it, eating it, you name it! I’m that person that will get excited to go out to eat a week before it happens. I will literally spend time on yelp getting pumped up, looking at the menu, and drooling over pictures. As pathetic as that may sound, I am not kidding! I have had my love of food for as long as I could remember. It may have something to do with my grandmother feeding me pastina with marinara sauce as soon as I was able to eat solid foods.
I grew up with Italian and Slovakian grandparents. What more do you need than homemade ravioli and halupki?! My family was constantly cooking. I remember my grandmother making us mashed potatoes at 11:00 pm when my siblings and I stayed over because we were craving them (she’s the best)! My mom made us home cooked meals for dinner our whole lives.
I didn’t even realize that people ate things that came from a box or a can until I started having dinner at my friend’s houses. I think growing up around such amazing food gave me the idea that food equals comfort. The thing is, that way of thinking could easily become “toxic”.
I have been in a constant battle with food pretty much my entire life. I can 100% say I have a preoccupation with food; it leads to me overeating, eating when I’m not even hungry, and then hating myself afterwards. I’ve struggled with body dysmorphia for so long to the point of me not even realizing it wasn’t “normal” to feel the things I was feeling about myself until I spoke with a therapist in college.
Over the past few years, I’ve learned to turn this “toxic” trait into a positive one! I’ve come to find that I absolutely love cooking for myself, friends, and family! While I primarily try to cook healthy, I will have days where I treat myself. However, I am extra careful to get myself back on track after I have my fun.
I am not the person to meal prep one meal at the beginning of the week, and eat the same thing every single day. I can’t eat grilled chicken, brown rice, and steamed broccoli for dinner 7 days a week. If that works for you, more power to you! I can’t do that because I know I will end up eating half a bag of tortilla chips and salsa by Wednesday (anyone else with me?).
To combat my cravings, I am all about creating recipes that are healthy and will nourish your body! I love to use color coded portioning containers to help me along the way. They make things so much easier, and you can even bring them with you to help you portion when you go out to eat. I will be sharing more about them in an upcoming blog post along with recipes that include container counts!
Anyway, that’s just a little about me! I am so looking forward to sharing tips about cooking, portion control, exercise, and “dieting”. I hope this is a space I can share recipes and get some in return from fellow foodies. I also want to share stories and be completely transparent about my journey to a healthier lifestyle, and how I sometimes slip up (like a normal human)!! I hope you read along with me, and can appreciate what I have learned through my own personal experiences.
I am going to leave you with some tips that have helped me get on track!
1. BUY AN INSTANT POT! This little guy has saved my life countless times. It gives you no excuse to get takeout. You can make an entire meal in your “IP” from FROZEN in, well, and instant! It is extra helpful if you have a busy job, kids, or if you are a student. I have lots of instant pot recipes to share with you! (It is ALSO talked about on Episode 7 of The Hungry Stuntgirl Podcast!)
2. Drink plenty of water! A tip I have yet to master myself. If you’re feeling hungry, have some water! Our bodies often mistaken thirst for hunger!
3. Chew sugar-free gum! You’re not hungry…just bored!! Sometimes, for me, it helps just to chew on something. If you have a “preoccupation with food” like I mentioned I do, this may help!
4. Prep veggies! Wash and cut up some celery, cucumbers, carrots, etc. and have them on hand for when you get snackish! It will prevent you from reaching into the cabinet for carb filled snacks with a high glycemic index. You can even scoop out a tablespoon of hummus if you hate eating your veggies plain.
5. Don’t deprive yourself! Give yourself some grace during these weird times. Stress also causes hunger and weight gain! You can have a day where you have a beer, some nachos, or ice cream. Just don’t make it a regular occurrence! We all know this, but sometimes I think it’s a good reminder. If you had a “cheat day” yesterday, today is the day to get your life back together queen! Don’t beat yourself up for that one day! Every day you get a new chance to live your best life!