Why. hello there!
Welcome to my little corner, ‘withahintofhoney’
You’re probably wondering who the heck I am?
If not, you need to be wondering what my dog is looking at! I know I am!
My name is Caitlyn. I am a 20-year-old girl living in Canada, with a passion for all things related to clean-eating, healthy living, exercise and overall wellness.
I – not unlike most bloggers I’ve been following – was not always interested in this sort of lifestyle. To me, the extent of healthy eating was getting a fat-ridden Caesar salad on the side of a McDonalds cheeseburger; exercise was a foreign concept, which I had absolutely no interest to educate myself in and I probably thought the words ‘clean-eating’ just meant eating on spotless china.
It was not until I became a high school graduate that I realized that I needed to make a change in my life. I am not sure if it was being pushed into a new situation (University) or letting myself develop unrequited feelings for someone who only saw me as a friend, but the moment I became an official adult my life took a really negative turn.
It started off completely healthy, I’m happy to admit. Being that I was not happy with who I saw when I looked in the mirror, I began to walk more frequently (which, was made easy as I was downtown, on foot more often than not) and tried to eat less junk foods. Before I knew it, the pounds were dropping. And more importantly, people were noticing a difference!
I could not have been more happy.
Unfortunately, that positive reinforcement only proved to have an adverse affect. Instead of helping me to continue a healthy lifestyle, it only began what would soon be a downward spiral of disordered eating and self-loathing. At first, I just limited my intake of food quite considerably. There was no order to it, or anything, I just didn’t eat very much. Then, I discovered how easy I was finding it and decided to become a little bit more serious.
One day, while home alone, I thought, “can I do it?” and discovered that I could.
Immediately after devouring a chocolate chip cookie, I walked my rear into my bathroom and did the best I could to ensure that that cookie would be in no way digested into my body. It didn’t take too long. It was kind of gross, but definitely something I could get used to. So, I did. Why? Because it gave me some kind of control. As backward as it sounds, I felt really good in those moments. This was something for me and me alone. In retrospect this mind set is completely botched.
Unfortunately, I’ve never been much of a sneak.
Soon my cover was blown and my friends began to follow me into the bathroom. This made it very different for a girl to do what she felt she needed to do. I decided that I needed to think of some way to continue my journey, without anyone knowing. So, I decided I’d keep my food down… but I’d just eat a whole heck of a lot less than it.
From there, I am sure you know the story.
I really don’t want to get into too much detail pertaining to my struggles, but I do want you to know that they were there.
Honey and beyond
First, I guess I’ll explain why I choose honey to represent the ‘food’ aspect of my blog. First and foremost, I love simplicity and sweetness. To me, honey represents just that: sweet and simple.
Furthermore, I love to put honey on virtually anything. Currently, I love the combination of honey, apricots, cinnamon and Greek Yogurt. I never really got onto the band wagon of agave, as I’m pretty much a honey advocate, so when it comes to sweetening up virtually anything, honey is the answer (It also is not unlike me to use it as salad dressing).
Now, let’s look past the beautiful nectar that is honey, and talk about food of all sorts, shall we?
I have had a pretty color past in regard to my diet. I’ve tried a raw diet, a vegan diet, vegetarian diet and now… here I am, pure and simply, an omnivore. I personally have absolutely nothing against any of the aforementioned diets. When done for the right reasons, all of them are great and healthy ways to live. But, what I had to learn is that not all bodies are made equal and not one diet fits all.
You see, when I was a vegan, I was not a happy herbivore. I felt lethargic and was never satisfied. Not only that, but I always felt a huge fit in the middle of my tummy. One sleepless night – at roughly one AM – it occurred to my why I was not happy as a vegan: I, Caitlyn Mearns, not only missed meats and dairy, but was also continuing the vegan lifestyle for the sole purpose that it gave me an excuse to restrict certain foods from my diet. Not good.
So, effective immediately, I returned to a meat-y diet and have never looked back.
First it was important for me to realize that there is nothing to be ashamed about in eating meats. First of all, much of this hemispheres population partake in the consumption of animal flesh. However there was always a small part of me that felt I was turning my back on the animal activist in me. So, as a compromise to both myself and the critters in the world, I try to eat mostly fish and poultry, excluding all red meats. I know it isn’t much, guys, but it is something.
Even with the return of meat into my diet, I still get a lot of questions about the way I eat. Why? Because I eat extremely clean. In a lot of ways I’ve adhered to the ‘clean eating diet’, and try to eat smaller meals (five to six) throughout the day, focusing on lean proteins (again, from dairy, legumes, poultry – turkey, usually – and seafoods), fruits and vegetables and healthy fats (mostly avocados, nuts and seeds).
It isn’t that I restrict starches, but I do limit them. My personal food philosophy is that it is not essential to eat breads, rices, potatoes and pastas, if you ensure you’re eating an adequate amount of fiber-rich vegetables (my favorites include broccoli, kale, brusselsprouts, asparagus, greens, mushrooms, etc) and healthy fats. The one starch you’ll never see this foodie part with, however, is oats. And quinoa. But I put quinoa in its own category. I love oatmeal.
One day I would love to get some sort of training in regard to nutrition in order to help those around me eat and live happily, as I feel everyone should!
Then I Decided to HIIT it a bit
Unlike most bloggers I’ve followed, instead of going from higher intensity exercise (running, spinning, etc) to a lower intensity (yoga, for example), I started off bending and stretching!
Every single day, I committed one hour and fifteen minutes to a vinyasa style of yoga. I loved it. Or, at the very least, I thought I loved it. In actuality it was becoming something I felt I needed, more than something I knew I wanted. I’m thankful that I can say my love for yoga has returned in a healthy and balanced way.
Exercise started off as something I absolutely despised. Yet, at the very same time, I couldn’t help be do it everyday.
First, I followed exercise DVDs like it was my job. I can’t even begin to describe how many I own! Now, while I still think at-home DVDs (like Jillian Micheals or Bob Harper) are amazing forms of fitness, and still partake in them from time to time, I am glad to say that my personal fitness regime has evolved quite a bit. Doing the same moves everyday can become extremely… boring.
That is what I discovered interval training!
Or, more importantly, high intensity interval training.
For those of you who are not familiar with the term HIIT (high intensity interval training), it is a form of exercise wherein the individual will do an activity (say, running) at their maximum effort for a short span of time (usually 20 seconds to three minutes) which will then be followed by a state of active recovery (light jog or march) for different set time (which is usually in ratio to the maximum effort interval time).
Since becoming fully into fitness, I’ve turned to online fitness gurus (such as ToneItUp, BodyRock and ZuzkaLight), good ol’ pinterest and my own gathered knowledge to come up with some very fun work out routines!
Now, I breathe and live exercise. Every moment down in my basement (where I sweat), working out is a good one. Nothing makes me feel more confident or more beautiful than my exercises.
My Honey Bears…
If you plan to follow this blog faithfully – which, I would love for you to – there are two little gremlins who are bound to make an appearance. For both of their sake’s (and upon their request) these will most likely be the only images of these two amazing individuals.
MamaBear : The Best Mama in the World World
This is my beautiful mother. Throughout my recovery she was my rock. To be quite truthful, without her I don’t know if I would be alive today. In the moments when I was bad – like, really bad – the thought of her always sent to me a feeling of ease and comfort. when I think about being around my mother I feel like anything is attainable.
Furthermore, she’s my best friend. I mean it. Her and I could be – and have been – compared to the characters of the Gilmore Girls on more than one occasion. At the risk of sounding cliche, this woman knows me more than I know myself. She will tell me the best way to handle a situation, I’ll argue, only to discover that she was absolutely correct. It’s embarrassing for me, but I’ve grown to accept it. I love her.
BabaBear: The Sweetest Guy I’ve ever Met
Although he came later in the recovery process, his role has been just as important. Growing up, I never expected to meet someone like that guy up there. Thoughtful, funny, caring, supportive, adorable… the list goes on. No one – I mean it – has ever made me feel the way he does. As cheesy and corny as it sounds, it was almost as if I knew long before we dated that this was the right fit for me. He’s given me the strength that I’ve needed to learn to love myself! He’s made me learn to love my fitness and use it for the right reasons, rather than for the wrong. I love him.
He, too, is my best friend, the love of my life and my future.
I guess that in many ways sums me up. Thank you so much for stopping by and please do not hesitate to message me with any questions or comments, or what-have-you!