This is how The Complete Plate came to be. My name is Lauren. I am wife and a mom to a very captivating a bubbly little girl with the most precious blonde curls. I currently call Calgary home.
Physical fitness has always been a priority for me from the time I was young. In 1994 I entered into the world of competitive swimming. Within a few years I began to excel at the sport, setting club records, obtaining qualifying times, and attending high level training camps with Olympic coaches. I was swimming up to nine times a week and five to ten kilometers a day.
In 2002 I transitioned in the sport I loved so much from an athlete to a coach. When I graduated from high school I realized that fitness was such an important and integral part of my life so I went to University to become a personal fitness trainer (PFT). In 2008, I graduated with my PFT and immediately started working with clients, teaching bootcamps, and running some dryland programs for the swim club.
In 2012, my husband and I found out the very exciting news that we were expecting our first baby! Around week 15 of my pregnancy I noticed that I was having really bad heart palpitations. After numerous tests I was diagnosed with a rare heart condition called arrhythmogenic right ventricle cardiomyopathy (ARVC).
The result of this diagnosis has completely turned my life upside down. I am no longer allowed to exercise, my career as a personal trainer is over, I am not allowed to have anymore babies, and to add insult to injury I have given up all caffeine.
As a result of not being allowed to exercise for the rest of my life, I now have to manage my weight by some means other than fitness. I don't have the luxury of relying on a 'quick fix' by starting a fad diet or detox. I need to develop long-term, sustainable healthy eating habits. I need to develop a lifestyle.
My weight loss from thoughtfully planned meals, with strict portion control, and a variety of foods has been extremely encouraging. However, I have noticed a couple of trends over the course of the journey. When my meals are all balanced and considerate of macronutrient composition and micronutrient quantities the weight comes off easily without any exercise. I also never crave sugary treats (this is huge because I have the worst sweet tooth ever).
As soon as I stop being strict and I don't have time to sit down and plan out my week through diet analysis I begin to gain the weight back. However I am still eating healthy and avoiding energy dense foods. This inspired me to write a book! You can read more here.
While my story is focused on weight loss that is only a small chapter of the story. Weight loss and a certain body image are not by any means a reflection of successfully establishing a healthy lifestyle. My journey has just highlighted the tremendous importance that meal planning, nutrition and cooking play in the ability to attain food wellness. My hope is to equip you with the necessary tools to successfully establish sustainable healthy eating habits, to develop positive relationships with food, and to find joy in the process!
Macronutrients - Dietary Fat, Carbohydrates & Proteins
Micronutrients - Vitamins & Minerals
Nutrient Dense - Foods that are rich in micronutrients but low in calories
Energy Dense - Foods that poor in micronutrients but high in calories