In addition to the clutter clearing rampage I’ve been on in my house, I mentioned earlier on that I had decided to take on a fitness challenge. Basically, a few injuries and a few extra pounds took me to the point whereby eventually, I felt physically uncomfortable in my body.

It looked fine on the outside, but it simply didn’t feel like my body.

And while I clearly had taken my body completely for granted, once it disappeared under body a that wasn’t mine, it didn’t feel so great anymore.

I suddenly had awareness in an area where I have never placed awareness before. And in terms of personal transformation, this is always a good thing.

I had consistently been underweight and athletic my whole life, though being underweight was not an active choice I made. I figured that I could eat whatever I wanted for as long as I lived, as I’d been doing it for my whole life already.

(Haters gonna hate.)

Not true.

(Haters diggin it now.)

I signed up for a challenge.

The challenge was free, and as long as a challenger lost 20 pounds in six weeks, it would stay free. My objective was not to lose 20 pounds, but I talked my way into it anyway, because I did want to lose some weight, get back in shape, and, quite frankly, fit into a totally hot, age-inappropriate dress as part of my Halloween costume.

I didn’t have said dress when I signed up for the challenge, but I had a fairly clear idea of what I wanted to be, and I found the perfect dress about a third of the way in, and bought it, even though if I did not lose any more weight or tone up some, someone would have to wrap me in saran wrap, a team of people, perhaps, before I put it on unless something changed.

I’m two thirds of the way through the challenge, and what I want to tell you is, I completely kicked ass, have already lost every pound and inch I wanted to lose, and look like you could bounce a quarter off any part of my body. In fact, I have had several offers of sponsorship for weight training in my age category.

But this is not what I’m going to tell you, because it isn’t true.

What is true is, I have made good progress, but I learned a couple of key things I did not at all expect to learn, one of which is that eating with total awareness is life-changing.

Who knew?

As an organic, fresh veggie, health food, kombucha-drinking, refined sugar-avoiding hippie-inspired yogi, I was pretty sure I ate well.

Not so much.

The trainers gave me a new nutrition plan, a way to eat, that is so radically different from the way that I have eaten up until now that it has been a major eye-opener. I had no idea that I basically existed on carbs, but, let’s just put it out there: I basically just existed on carbs.

I have not messed up on the food plan all that much, because it feels good. I find that when I don’t eat according to the nutritional plan, I don’t feel as good. I’m taking in much more protein, and my stomach is never upset, I no longer have gas or bloating as I occasionally did before, and my body eliminates regularly and with ease. TMI? Yeah, well, keeping it real.

I strongly recommend that every single person on the planet who can get themselves to a nutritionist or personal trainer — to go over a nutritional plan that’s optimal for their body – do it. There are two specific things that make it great: one, of course, are the things that I already listed.

But there’s another: it’s eating with awareness, knowing exactly what’s going in your body and not eating mindlessly or by impulse. I didn’t realize how often I did this, but I did it, well, pretty much all the time.

Would you call that a lack of awareness? I would.

And when I go off the nutrition plan, there’s no denying it, no getting around it, it just is what it is. There’s a beautiful and sometimes challenging accountability in that.

And I like it.

Will I fit into that Halloween dress? At this point, that depends entirely on me. I’d call it a probable. The great news is, I’m not super attached to wearing it. I want to, and the changes in my body feel good, but while I thought that I’d beat myself up if I didn’t do everything I’ve been told to do, I feel super okay just with the awareness that’s been integrated into my world.

After all, that dress will totally work for New Year’s Eve. 😉