Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Italian Diet

I don't try to do it on purpose, but I always seem to lose a few pounds when I go on vacation.  
I recently had the amazing opportunity to visit Italy with my sister-in-law and nieces and was surprised when I jumped on the scale the day after my return. I thought my husband played a joke on me and adjusted the scale. How could I have lost weight on a diet of Italian wine, pizza, pasta, gelato, limoncello and other various vacation delights?  Might it possibly have been the thousands of steps we took daily sightseeing or our running from one train to another with our suitcases in tow as we ventured from city to city?
I am sure the 10,000 plus steps a day had something to do with it.  But what I think it was more than anything was the way I approached the vacation. I knew that it might be a little crazy on the trip traveling to a new city every one to three days.  I kept an open mind to enjoy whatever it was we were doing and wherever it was we were going, soaking in all that Italy had to offer.  From the creamy gelato to the wonders of Michelangelo's David, I enjoyed every moment by just observing and absorbing everything around me (as well as taking a few hundred pictures!).  When we slow down like this we can enjoy what we are experiencing.  There is less stress (and less overeating).  Unlike when we are running from one activity to another. 
That is when our creativity really has time to work too - when we take some quiet time to just observe, to think or not think and let our mind wander to experience everything that is around us.  The breathing exercises in yoga assist us in developing our focus skills.  
A girlfriend recently surprised me with a lighted glitter lava lamp that I had admired on her desk.  It plugs into the USB port on your computer.  With a shake, (which is sometimes what we need to get started or to change a mood), the glitter starts to flow and the colors slowly change in the encased liquid.  I find it relaxing, beautiful as well as a great reminder to slow down and enjoy the moment - to stop and let a few creative ideas have a moment to settle into my brain.