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Nutrish November

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Let’s take a collective breath together. Ready? Go.

We made it through the week. Beat up and exhausted and charged, we’ve hobbled across the finish line. 

In this time fraught with discourse and hateful rhetoric, you might feel paralyzed, confused, unable to fathom moving forward into the unknown. I get it. I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to make moves and scrape the cement off my shoes.

This is where Nutrish November comes in. It’s a concept I wanted to adopt at the beginning of December (with an equally alliterate name like Delish December), right in the swing of the holiday season. But now is as good a time as any to get it started.

So, what is Nutrish November?

It’s not a food challenge. It’s not a quick fix. There is no "30-days to a slimmer body" element that keeps you focused for one month only to leave you spiraling the next. It’s simply a starting point. It’s a way to get your feet moving again, to gain momentum again, to take care of yourself so you can take care of others (you know, the whole “put your oxygen mask first before helping another” analogy). 

Then what IS it?!

Okay, I’m getting there! Nutrish November is built on one major pillar: you are in control of your health. You are in control of your body. You are in control of your life. As William Ernest Henley so poetically phrased it, "[You] are the master of your fate; [you] are the captain of your soul." We all have the potential to change our own destinies. We can make a difference in our own lives, which in turn might help change the life of another. Let that one sink in for a moment.

So let’s break it down. Nutrish November is comprised of three goals:

*Make one meal a day*

I’ve been wanting to eat nothing but junk all week. It was my default response. But, after binge eating an entire bag of sweet potato chips and a chocolate cookie, I felt worse than before. The comforts of gluttonous eating betrayed me! But of course it did. 

Eating a good meal is crucial for overall health, balance, and clarity. Eating a good meal makes you feel better. It will help you feel more energized to do your best, be strong in your resolve, and positive in a time when we need it the most. Making a good meal also reminds you that you have control over your own life and you can make your own decisions. 

Tofu, greens, and the sun. 

Tofu, greens, and the sun. 

Take some greens, add some protein, throw a little fat in there, and you’ve got yourself a good meal. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but it has to be made by you. There are plenty of recipes on my site to get you started! The picture above is my Nutrish November meal from this morning. Tofu, kale, broccoli, and (not pictured) a handful of almonds. It was delish as well as nutrish! (Bonus: if you can make this meal plant based, per the movement from the dynamic Jessica Murnane of the One Part Plant movement.

Side note about eating junk food: Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, has found in her research that there are those who can moderate their junk food intake and those who have to abstain from it all together. Figure out how you're programmed, and work with it! (Where are all my abstainers at?!) 

 *Sweat with a stranger* 

I attended a HIIT (high-intensity interval training) class last night in Brooklyn. I was a part of a beta group testing out a new concept gym, and I frankly didn't want to go. Staying curled up in bed seemed to be the only way to survive this week, and the thought of working out with a bunch of strangers didn't motivate me like it usually does. But I signed up and they were expecting me, so I went. And let me tell you, sweating with strangers is like medicine.

I can't begin to tell you how healing it was to swap endorphins with a bunch of people I didn't know. We all came in shy and unsure, stepping into the unfamiliar. And we all left with joy, power, and tired muscles. (A special thank you to Coach James Quigley for the inspiring and motivating workout!)

Find a gym, a community center, a fitness club, and sign up for a group class. Take a kickboxing class. Zumba. Crossfit. Yoga. Barry's Bootcamp. Whatever! Just sign up and go. Bring a friend or go it alone. Just go. Go ESPECIALLY because you don't want to go. And then meet someone you don't know. And encourage them. Encourage them to do one more rep, push a little bit further, dig a little bit deeper. Come alive in the company of strangers. Here is a link to a $19 trial of ClassPass to get started. 

 *Step into your comfort zone* 

I had a very productive talk with my good friend yesterday, in which we discussed ways to make a positive impact. We're not activists by nature; protesting and petitioning are a little outside of our wheelhouses, and the act of stepping into that arena doesn't feel genuine per our nature. But that doesn't excuse us, any of us, from participating and contributing. 

We all have talents. We all have qualities that we possess that just flow through us. We are writers, politicians, musicians, coaches, accountants, programmers. We all possess some skill worthy of sharing. It's time to share. Stop hiding it from us. Stop worrying if it's good enough. Just do the thing that is totally in your comfort zone. And do it now. If you're not sure what that something is, here are a few links to curated lists of organizations that need you:

One Green Planet - Here's How You Can Shape Our Environmental Future with Trump as President

Man Repeller - Post-Election To-Do List: How to Take Action, Donate, and Help

 Daily Kos - The Safety Pin Movement: American Edition (#SafetyPinUSA)

Jezebel - A List of Pro-Women, Pro-Immigrant, Pro-Earth, Anti-Bigotry Organizations That Need Your Support

That's it! Those are the only rules! Make a healthy meal, sweat with a stranger, and share your talents. The goal: make it a point to do AT LEAST one of these a day for the rest of November. And take pictures. And post them on all of your social medias! Tag them #nutrishnovember ! Show everyone out there that you're making moves. You're making things better in your own way. Send me a message to tell me how you're doing (hello@paleoishperez.com) or leave a comment below. We got this. Stronger Together.