What I Learned From Traveling

01 Apr 2014

As most of you know, I have been traveling quite a bit lately and my life has been all sorts of crazy. I have been here, there, back in London, traveling some more, moving house, living out of suitcases, more travel and finally a big, big move coming up this Sunday! All very exciting stuff. However it’s led me to not lead as healthy of a lifestyle as I once have nor the one that I promote. Yet, I have learned more about myself than I could have imagined possible during these travels and I would like to share a lot of this with you.

  1. Your primary ‘food’ is more important than the actual food you eat. I am currently studying at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, which is a one year long program on becoming a health coach. I will go into it more in another post but one very interesting thing that I have been learning is that our primary foods are not actually the foods we put in our body but our relationships with others, our jobs, …. that affect us more. This has been such an interesting concept for me because of how intensely healthy I was this past summer eating perfectly, exercising 6 days a week and yet I wasn’t happy. My skin was awful and I was actually pretty depressed. Cut to  now where I am lucky if I can workout 2-3x a week at the moment, mainly running and yoga at that. My diet is not what it once was of green smoothies every morning, rather I am having 2-3 meals a day, little snacking and a bit more alcohol than I would like… the difference? My skin is amazing, my body is not bloated even though I’m not eating as well and I am just beaming with positive energy. Sometimes we forget that it’s not the food we eat rather who we are with that can make us happy or unhappy. I challenge you all look at your own life in terms your jobs, relationships…. and what small changes you could make to start having your primary food nourish you more.
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    A dinner party I threw for my close friends in London. It’s important to share your time and love with others.

  2. Just because you don’t workout as hard as you once did, doesn’t mean that you can’t get back into your normal routine. As mentioned above, I am not exercising nearly as hard as I once was and I know this is just a period in my life of chaos. I also know it will end and I will get routine back. Therefore I am not scared about the fact that I’m only doing yoga and running. In fact it’s making me appreciate the time I do get to the gym for some HIIT training or weights. I look back at the previous two months of all the amazing traveling I’ve done, the experiences I’ve had, all the amazing time with my friends and I realize that those times are the ones I will remember years down the line, not the fact that I did or didn’t workout 5 days a week. I know that I will get back into everything though and be able to balance it all.
  3. Traveling should equal fun: new experiences, new food, no worries. For some reason it is so hard for many of us to accept the fact that when we travel we probably will break our ‘diet’ whatever it consists of and that gives us stress. We seem to think that we need to be perfect all the time, including when we are visiting new cultures and while I appreciate this because I do the same, I also full heartedly believe that when you are flying somewhere new that you should let go and appreciate the place you are going. For me, in the past few months I have been to Rome, Austria, France, America and Brazil… now if I wanted to keep my diet I could have, but what fun is that when I am going new places for the first time and experiencing these wonderful cultures with divine food. Sometimes we need to just understand that you might not be eating as perfect as you wish, but you will be gaining life experience! Not only that but when I asked for gluten free/dairy free things in Brazil or Austria…. they kind of looked at me like I was mental. Not everyone in this world can speak your language or understand what you want which means you might end up having to eat something anyways, so just chill out, relax and enjoy it!
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    Enjoying wine in Paris during lunch. No guilt because I didn’t over indulge.

  4. We all go through ups and downs in life; try to grow from the bad experiences. I have been stressed as I have pretty much been living out of a suitcase for the past few months and being a human, I like routine which I don’t have. Work has been so busy, I have barely had time to do blogs or videos, things I absolutely love and I’m not feeling ‘settled.’ Yet I know that everything that happens has a meaning and if I keep my eyes open I can learn from it, grow, and appreciate the mistakes I have made. So while I yearn for stability,  structure and routine, I have learned how to keep myself sane, stable, and healthy while I have none of the above. It’s about just going with the flow in life and realizing that you will not always be able to control everything but to know in your heart that through everything if you can keep a positive mind and an open heart that you will get through it and things will get better and help you grow as a person.
  5. Appreciate your friends, family and loved ones. One of the biggest things I have learned through the past few months is that I spent too much time this summer working 7 days a week, spending no time with my friends and not allowing myself to open up to my family. It not only hurt me because I would end up getting depressed and binge eat, but it created tension with my friends because they didn’t feel I wanted to see them. So I changed it all recently and I am now traveling with my boyfriend and enjoying every moment of it, going out to dinners with girlfriends and just trying to be a good friend and daughter to my parents. I am learning about myself and others through the process and realize that life is not always about the food we eat and how much exercise we have to get the perfect body. Rather it really is about the experiences that we have with others and giving yourself to the people you love.
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A delicious acai bowl I had in Rio de Janeiro

So with that I hope you have learned a bit more about becoming a better person, enjoying yourself and realizing that it’s totally normal to eat bad, not workout, and just want to ‘live life’ every once in a while.

I will be posting some stuff soon about how to stay healthy while staying in hotels as well as a video from Brazil among other goodies.

Much love,

Nikki

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