My More Than Enough Book celebrates 1 year soon!
Welcome to Live Free Creative, the podcast that provides inspiration and ideas for living a creative, adventurous, and intentional lifestyle. I’m your host Miranda Anderson. And I hope that each time you listen, you feel a little bit more free to live your life. Exactly the way you want to live it.
Hello. Welcome back to the show. Episode 98 of Live Free Creative podcast. It is July. It feels like this month has been a long time coming this year. We are finally halfway through 2020, for better or worse, right?
Folks, hold onto your hats for the last six months of 2020. Hoping that there are many wonderful things in store for you.
Today’s podcast episode is a fun conversation that I had a few weeks ago with my friend Talia Pollock from Party In Your Pants. We talk about the intersection of health and happiness, how to bring some simplicity and ease into both in your life.
I think you will love Talia’s energy and her perspective. I’ll make sure that we link to her website, her podcast, her new book, as well as her Instagram, all in the show notes. So head over to livefreecreative.co/podcast to find her and find out more about her and all of the wonderful resources she offers.
And I hope that you enjoy this conversation.
Before I share Talia with you all. I want to share just a quick life lately.
Segment: Life Lately
As I’m recording this episode, I am in Montana, near Hebgen Lake in my sister’s beautiful lake house with my family. We decided to do one summer vacation this year, since we’ve canceled like seven trips so far this year. Our July trip that we’ve planned for a year to come visit family. We felt like it was safe that we could take the necessary precautions to be safe and to be courteous to other people and to make this trip happen.
And we are so happy to be able to spend the next couple of weeks with our family in these beautiful outdoor spaces. So we’re going to spend a little bit of time in Utah, Dave and my family both live in Salt Lake City.
We’re going to spend this week near West Yellowstone. Today we went into Yellowstone National Park and saw the bison and went on a hike by the hotpots. We’re doing some lake time.
When we get back to Salt Lake next week, we’re going to spend a lot of time with Dave’s family hiking, going up into the mountains. We’re planning on doing s’mores up in the canyon one night.
It just feels like home. This is where Dave and I both spent most of our childhood growing up, being in the mountains, being with the fresh air in these huge wide open spaces. I think it’s something that we forget living in the East, that there are just like massive spaces where there’s nothing obstructing your view of the beautiful wilderness.
It has been really fun to spend so much time outside with our kids and with our families. I feel like this has been a great chance for me to just sort of press pause on my own ideas about what life is supposed to look like and just embrace being present.
It’s been really nice to be on vacation where the last several months have felt like they were supposed to feel like vacation because we were home. And, you know, Dave was kind of flexible with work, and work paused for a lot of people, but it didn’t feel like a vacation did it.
The corona quarantine hasn’t felt very much like a vacation at all. And this just really getting away and being, we love our home, but being outside has been so nice being with our family who we love and have missed so much interacting with adults and my kids interacting with kids honestly has been so healing for us.
And I have loved just feeling connected to myself and to my people.
A couple exciting things that are happening right now that I’m sort of getting ready for are that next week is the one year anniversary of my book being released More Than Enough, which came out on July 9th in 2019.
I have been so excited to celebrate. I’m going to get a little birthday cake. I have some fun surprises for you all for people on social media, as a fun couple of bonuses that are going to come.
For people who haven’t yet gotten a copy of the book, this is a great time to do it. In the next week during the birthdays extravaganza, I think I’m actually going to make all of the bonuses happen all month, starting on the ninth, going to the end of July.
And so I hope that you’ll tune in for that. It’s been really fun to think that a whole year has passed since More Than Enough released. My baby is growing up. She’s going to be one year old out there in the world.
Along with that, it’s been really fun since I mentioned the Live Free Creative writing camp or work writing retreat, that’s happening in November, we’ve sold another couple of registrations.
And so there’s only four spots left. There’s only four places available. If you’d like to come hang out with us in Outer Banks, North Carolina, November 4th through 8th, all of the details will be linked in the show notes on the website. There’s only four spots and I would love to have some more of you come and spend some time just getting some amazing creative work done.
In that November writing retreat is when I hope to really dig into the meat of my second book, which I’m hoping to release in the Spring/Summer of 2021. After months of feeling a little bit stalled out and a little bit confused and a little bit curious about how to pivot and where to go next, I am finally feeling like I have some space and clarity to just feel free to experiment.
And that is something that I hope that you feel when you listen to my show and you listen to the things that I’ve been doing and working on that you recognize that you really can just experiment and just try things and just play to enjoy your life.
Every day is something that we can all work towards. And that is what I’ve been learning, or remembering rather in my life lately.
Main Topic: Party In Your Plants with Talia Pollock
My friends, sit back and relax and enjoy this fun conversation with Talia Pollock from Party In My Pants.
Miranda: Talia, welcome to the show.
Talia: Thank you so much for having me. I’m happy to have you here.
Miranda: Okay. You have some of the best energy online. Wow. That I’ve ever seen. I mean, so good. So good. I’m so excited for people to find you we’ll make sure all of that information is available for them. Tell me a little bit about you and how you came with this bundle of energy.
Talia: Well, I didn’t always have this bundle of energy, so that was a great lead up. Thank you very much. For a lot of my life. I actually struggled with my health and I mean, there was an eight year period of time where I felt like crap.
I just, you know, it started with digestive issues and that led me to seek out help from every type of healer. I could think of multiple gastroenterologists, naturopathic doctors, chiropractors, acupuncturists, hypnotherapist, dieticians, nutritionists, everyone.
And the most, anyone told me was you have IBS, which really just means like p.s. here’s her life sentence, we don’t know how to help you, we don’t know what you have. Here you go take care of yourself. You kind of have a nothing.
But that wasn’t sufficient for me because I was in college while this was happening, when you’re supposed to be thriving and experimenting and learning and growing and socializing. And I just felt sick all the time.
And then when your guts messed up, you know, that really affects your immune system. So that led to a slew of weird health things throughout college, like ear infections. And I got herpes on my eyebrow in case, you know, that’s a thing is anyone was wondering that’s a thing, not a fun thing. And of course that leads to, um, lack of confidence.
You know, a little, little awkward to walk around with herpes on your eyebrow and feeling like sick. Every second, it led to anxiety. It led to depression.
And so here I was knowing that I had life force in me. Like I knew that I could be this person, but I wasn’t able to because I was being held back by my health.
So I naturally, as one does when they’re depressed and feeling like crap, I found comedy, uh, that became my relief. That became really a huge part of my healing. And I decided I wanted to be a comedian. I wanted to write humor.
I wanted to use my words to diffuse other people’s problems. You know, cause that’s what really is. We laugh when we recognize our struggles that the comedian is saying, and it makes us feel less alone and less weird and less bad.
And I loved it. I thought it was magic. So that led me to L.A. where I was interning for Adam Sandler’s production company. And in my spare time, I was seeking out all the wellness stuff that L.A. had to offer.
And one day I went to this healer who was like touching parts of my body and telling me what parasites I had and what expensive supplements I needed to purchase to heal myself. Cause I was so desperate to feel better.
And I was checking out with all my new supplements and I told the receptionist I was hungry. And she said, okay, go across the street to get this coconut smoothie. I said, okay. I go across the street for the smoothie, they hand it to me, it’s just like white frothy creamy thing. And I say, Oh, I’m so sorry. I can’t do dairy.
And the person says, no, sweetie, this is vegan.
Now I had no clue what that word meant. I had no idea. I’m like I had no idea. This was 2008 before it was in the normal lexicon before Beyonce was talking about it, right? So I drank the smoothie, just didn’t want to cause a scene, whatever, everything upsets my stomach anyway.
And it was the first time in over eight years I consumed something that made me feel good. That made me feel energized and made me feel alive. And obviously, when you have that kind of experience, how are you ever gonna not eat that way?
So I dove head first into the plants. It changed my health, gave me my energy. It was amazing, but I still had to finish out college. So I went back to school and I didn’t know how to balance this healthy lifestyle with normal college life.
I mean, my friends were off like doing keg stands and drinking box wine. And I was in my room like dehydrating kale and like juicing almonds, because you couldn’t, this was before they sold almond milk, right?
Miranda: I was going to just say like 2008, veganism. It not only isn’t in the normal lexicon, but you don’t find it in grocery stores, bakeries, cookbooks. Like how, how do you approach the idea of a lifestyle that you know nothing about when there’s no real, there’s like such few options?
Talia: Well, I mean, I spent a lot of my time sitting in Barnes & Noble with a yellow legal pad, just transcribing all, you know, niche books I could find there. This was before obviously Instagram, Facebook, YouTube.
There were a few blogs, but like barely. And I just, you know, I bought at one point Veg News existed, the magazine, and I literally ordered like 16 of their like archive. Like you could order magazines. And they showed up in a big box in my college dorm.
And I was just sitting there like learning through that material. I learned that if I want coconut water, like I had in California, I had to like take out a machete and cut open coconuts, which is what I did.
So I’m in college, cracking, open coconuts, drinking the water, scooping out the meat, putting it in a blender, making smoothies, make an ice cream while my friends are off being normal college students, right?
So obviously this led me to feel like a total outcast. It led me to start taking online classes from my on campus apartment. Cause I was too ashamed to go out in public with my little baggies of kale chips. Um, which now it’s so ridiculous. Cause it’s like trendy.
Miranda: Oh, so cool.
Talia: Yeah. Now you’re like the cool kid on campus if you got your kale chips. But then I was like a hermit. I called myself a health nut hermit. I deactivated from my sorority. I completely dropped out of life and I graduated healthier than ever, but more unhappy than ever.
Talia: And that that’s just where the whole thing started. So it was really fascinating how first I felt sick and then, and then, um, and unhappy, but then I felt better, but then I was still in a house, right?
Miranda: Yeah. I feel like a lot of people think this is the trade off and I’m excited because I know that it isn’t this way for you anymore.
I have gone through periods of my life where I did feel this way, that it was that healthy eating would make me unhappy because it was too hard, too expensive, too time consuming, or just generally frustrating or just didn’t taste as good, you know?
So how do you then reconcile the two of like, I want to be happy and I want to go out and I want to be with my friends and I want to live a great life, make things easy on myself, and I want to feel good inside my body by eating healthy or healthier.
Talia: So a few things. I mean, I’ll go with, with two main ones first.
So the first one is having my philosophy of just eat more plants in a given day snack lunch year, week, lifetime, eat more plants than you eat crap. And if you adopt just that simple philosophy, crap being chemical refined, artificial, and processed food, more plants, real food and crap, that’s it.
That takes away all the other stress and noise of, Do I go paleo? Do I go vegan? Vegetarian? No. Gluten free. Wait, wait. You don’t just quiet it out.
If your guiding principle is more plants than crap. I mean, even just me saying that right now just feels lighter. Like, you know, I’ve had so many people, I mean, that’s my whole body of work. Just calming people down.
There’s so much stress out there about perfect way to eat or all or nothing or eat this, not that. And it really boils down to just eat more plants than crap. So if you look at your plate and you have more real food than crap food processed food, like you’re good and you can, that ratio can change whatever throughout the day, throughout the week based on your life. But that’s all you really have to focus on, I think.
Miranda: Well, and right now, as we’re going into summer, this is, I feel like the very easiest time to kind of reset and use that. I mean, that’s such a simple ratio, right? More plants than crap. And I love your definition of, say it again, what is crap?
Talia: Chemical refined artificial and processed food. Just like so good and so simple, right?
Miranda: So we go into the summer, we have this plethora availability of plants that isn’t necessarily available in the other times of year. So great time.
And I know with the pandemic and the political things going on right now that people are feeling, I don’t know, my eating has been super out of whack. I know other people’s eating has been super out of whack just because everything has felt different about life in the last several months.
And there’s something so hopeful about the summertime, even if we are spending more time at home or more time physically distance from people or, you know, but just knowing that like the earth is continuing to bring forth produce. And I harvested my first cucumber from my very own backyard garden this morning.
It was like a spiritual experience. I grew a cucumber and then my children tonight ate it. And I was like, Oh my gosh, this is magic.
Talia: And it is such a good reminder. Because I think that we all can feel that way. And about plants that they’re magic. Like they came from the earth, they came from seeds. They’re like, we can recognize ourselves in them as like a true natural piece of how we all fit together in a way that we can’t necessarily with processed foods, you know, because you don’t see yourself in Cheetos.
Miranda: Right. Totally. I think it’s like a really fun time to remind, like, to just kind of have the touchstone of like, okay. Yeah, because more plants is good. Like more plants is possible, more plants is available and starting to actually just create some awareness around that rather than the default.
Do you feel like marketing and I mean just Big Food has made it so we feel like the easiest default is packaged foods rather than recognizing who’s profiting when you grow your own cucumber?
Talia: No. Well, no one is really profiting with plants. I mean farmers. Yes. But like there’s no, you know, I say in my book, like plants are foods with no celebrity endorsements, like are not foods with slogans and fancy packages that like a lot of people brainstorm the best way to make us want, right? Like no one profits when you eat kale from your farmer’s market, like that, there’s no big push on that.
Miranda: But you’re the celebrity, aren’t you? I mean, it’s just so fun to have like just a reminder. Cause I think that we know this. It’s not that we all would say no, it’s so much easier or better for me to eat crap all the time. Like, no, we know that plants are better for us. Like we know we know that inherently. But we don’t have someone consistently reminding us about that.
And so I’m curious. So there’s a couple of things. So let’s talk for a second about your book, Party In Your Pants, because it’s so good. Not only, I mean, it’s full of recipes that are all plant based and gluten-free for those people who need that as well.
But in and around the recipes, it’s like the rest of the recipes are like the scaffolding for your true message, which is that your life can be even more amazing when you pay attention to your health and that your health can be simple and that it can be fun and, and celebrated.
And one of my favorite pieces in the beginning of your book is where you talk about the discomfort of eating healthy and you address this. I love that you kind of give some examples and maybe you could give a few now of the reasons why people don’t want to eat healthy or they think that it’s going to be hard. Give us a few of them.
Talia: Well, cause that’s where my story stems from. You know, like I found the plants and I understood, wow, this stuff makes me feel amazing, but it was quite a buzzkill when I would want to eat my plants at a tailgate. My family’s from Pittsburgh and going to tailgates is part of our religion and, you know, Steelers tailgates.
So I would show up there and want to eat my plants. So actually before we’d go to a tailgate, I’d ask if we could do a Whole Foods run and everyone would moan and groan and roll their eyes. And I would have to like run in. And I felt so guilty that everyone was waiting in the car.
So I would just like grab the first thing I saw, which was like pineapple from like the register. And I would just be standing there in the Pittsburgh, freezing winter in my like, you know, sleeping bag, jacket, eating pineapple, you know, like while people looked at me like I was crazy.
So that’s where my struggle was. That’s where it started. And so I am a massive proponent of identifying where healthy eating sucks for you and then figuring out how to make it suck less because it is not a universal suckage.
For some people it’s having a husband who refuses to eat anything living or it’s having kids who, you know, I’m sure you’ve had your fair share of struggles to help your kids eat healthier, or it’s going to an office and you’re, you know, cubicle mate, Susie, always brings her fresh made scones. And it like really throws your day out of whack.
Or it’s that you don’t have much time to cook.
I mean, we each have our own forms of struggles. And so the book, what I’ve been doing actually with my business for seven years is when somebody joins my newsletter, I have them reply with their number one struggle.
So I have thousands of data points on what the universal struggles and what people’s struggles are. And a lot of them are social situations. Like not many people are like, Ugh, I just don’t like want to, or like, I just don’t like the taste of kale. It’s like these really unique to their social situations.
So I start off the book right away with like, yo, here’s my empathy. I understand that. It sucks because no one’s talking about how it sucks. Everyone’s just like, yay, make your smoothie. It’s easy, you know, spiralized zucchini and have it instead of pasta, no prob and I don’t think that that’s realistic or very helpful because spiralized zucchini is not the same thing as pasta. And so like, let’s just own that.
Miranda: Right, if people think that it’s easy or that it should be easy and then they try and it doesn’t feel easy for them, then they think, Oh, I guess I’m doing it wrong
So it’s really interesting to recognize all the struggles that come like when you’re trying to eat healthier. But I also love, like I flipped the page. I was like, yes, I’m with you. Like these things do feel hard sometimes and like money or understanding or access or all the different things.
And then I flip the page and you say, and we have to remember that like eating healthy also or not eating healthy also has these things that are hard and might feel yucky. Like you don’t feel good about yourself. You don’t feel like you’re like you have energy or that you’re not sleeping well.
Talia: This is the magic, this is what you have to do. You have to understand what negative experiences you’re having in your life that are coming from not eating well and you have to pinpoint them.
So I say, you know, lacking the energy to play kickball with your kids or too sluggish to play Scrabble with your nerdy kids. Feeling foggy in your brain, seeing everything, even full glasses, as half empty because you’re depressed. Um, you know, stuff like that. Looking years older than you are, needing to wear makeup to cover up all sorts of skin problems, relying on TicTacs or mouthwash or gum or antisocial tendencies to mask your stanky breath.
You know, all these things that really put, you know, the lack of health into your real life as well, because, and this was my number two for how to whatever we were talking about before, like, want to eat healthfully.
When you come in touch with your why, when you understand why you want to eat healthfully every day, it is the easiest thing in the world to do.
You know, I liken it to a cell phone. We want our cell phone to be charged. So we will go through extreme feats of creativity. We will buy a charger case. So we make sure it never runs out of juice. We will bring a charger with us no matter where we go, we’ll bring the bonus charger. We’ll make sure our car has a charger.
We will do whatever it takes to make sure that damn cell phone never runs out of battery because we want the full charge right now.
When we make the connection between why we want to feel good, why we want to have this health, then you will go through that stuff to make it happen. You know, you will show up to a tailgate like me with food that you joyfully made at home, you know, you will bring like me kombucha to a tailgate so I’m not just without a drink and I can still participate in pong, just with kombucha.
You will do the stuff it takes to reap the benefits. And so it’s just really about becoming clear on your personal desires for wanting to eat and fill your bath.
Miranda: Totally. I just think it’s really powerful to understand that the discomfort exists in both doing and not doing the thing. And this is not, I mean, this is true for everything. It’s not only true for food, although that’s what we’re talking about right now, but the discomfort of eating healthy and the discomfort of not eating healthy, like there’s both sides of it.
And most often what we do is we look at the discomfort of how hard it is to eat healthier. And we just focus in on that. And then we’re like, Oh, well, we don’t really want to choose that. But we forget that there is this discomfort that exists inherently in our lives when we aren’t eating, when we aren’t fueling our bodies, in the way that our bodies need to function properly.
And we are choosing that by default, when we don’t make at least a little effort in some of the time eating, according to what our bodies actually need in order to function. And I have to remind myself of that when I’m going to be a little bit uncomfortable either way.
But do I want to be uncomfortable in a way that keeps me further away from my ultimate goals? Or do I want to go through and accept the discomfort that moves me in the direction of where I want to head, which is being overall more healthy tomorrow than I am today, being overall more full of energy and joy and celebration and excitement and enthusiasm and ideas and creativity and all of those things in the future than I am now.
I’m moving in the direction of becoming a little bit better imperfectly, but a little bit better all the time, rather than consistently as I get a little older, getting a little more lax and a little bit taking care of myself worse, if that makes sense. So, I mean, it’s just so powerful to recognize you’re choosing discomfort either way.
And unfortunately, we’re human. So life is going to have some discomfort; it’s going to have joy and it’s going to have discomfort, but you can choose whether that discomfort moves you in the direction of health and happiness or whether it keeps you back from it.
Talia: I mean, gosh, this is the best conversation I’ve had about my book. And I lean on these, you get it so much. And I love it so much. Yeah. I look at plants as a tool. It’s a tool, you know, it’s a tool that helps us perform as better writers, as better mothers in your case, or dog mothers in my case, hives, you know, friends, daughters, sisters, you know.
Plants are a tool that help us be the best we can be in the rest of our life. And that is really what it comes down to. That is what I am so passionate about because I think a lot of people feel so overwhelmed with healthy eating. But when you look at it as a vehicle to your better life outside of the kitchen, why would you not want to put some more plants in your body?
Miranda: Yeah, yeah, totally. I mean, it can be that like, as simple as that link. So give us a couple, like your top three…let’s just assume the lowest common denominator, someone who isn’t super fluent in nutrition, goes to the regular grocery store and just sort of picks up what they normally do because that’s what their mom got. Those are the recipes that they’re used to eating at home or whatever.
Where’s the best place to start? And what are just a couple very simple things that people can implement starting now to eat more plants and less crap.
Talia: Yeah. So everything that you see in my book is normal grocery store food. That was very important to me. That’s how I live. You know, it’s not fancy. It’s not crazy. So I have a lot of pasta recipes in my book, and I think pasta is the best way to start eating more plants because everybody loves pasta.
And we’re living in this miraculous time now where they’re making crazy cool, healthy pastas, you know, like it’s mind blowing. You can obviously just get like a brown rice pasta, but now they make chick pea pastas or lentil pastas. So that means that within the pasta, you’re getting so much more protein, which means it’s going to fill you up, which means you’re going to need to eat less of it to be satisfied and feel strong.
So go to the store. Most stores sell some interesting variety of pasta, get a pasta. And then I have literally so many recipes, but one is Pesto is the Besto. I mean, literally I’m sure you love pesto.
Miranda: All different kinds. Like I like basil pesto, but I love arugala pesto. I love cilantro, but like any green ground up with some salt, like you can make.
Talia: And if you’re just making a basic basil pesto, you can add handfuls of spinach or kale and you will not know, nobody will know nobody. So there you go. That is literally packing plants. If you get a high protein, like planty pasta, pesto with lots of kale or spinach in it, you have the raw garlic, basil, and some lemon, it’s so easy.
And then you can also add plants into the pasta mix. Like I love peas, broccoli, cauliflower, any plants that tickle your people’s fancy. Frozen plants are amazing. And they’re so cheap. They’re frozen at peak ripeness. So they’re maximum nutrition and they don’t go bad. So you don’t have to worry, which is like a huge struggle with plant eating is that like you buy things and you forget about it, or you don’t eat it fast enough. And it goes bad. So frozen produce is amazing.
So I’ve tons of pasta. I mean, I have a butternut squash sauce. I have a lentil bolognese sauce, like so many positives. It is a great way to start, I would say.
Miranda: I love it. That’s a good starting point. And for the summer, actually, one of the recipes that I love from your book is a Greek, like a Mediterranean style, cold pasta, because that’s what I want to eat going into like picnics and stuff, just like that. Um, like a pasta salad style pasta, which is a great way to eat. I mean, you can even do your leftovers like that, if you want, just don’t heat them up the second time and turn them into kind of pasta salad, which is awesome. We all love pasta don’t we?
Talia: Yes. I don’t know what it is. It’s just fantastic. I mean, I also have a chickpea pizza recipe in the book where you just use chickpea flour to make a crust. So a lot of the food that I love to eat and recommend people eat is just like elevated versions of your normal food.
I’m not a huge fan of encouraging people to eat like weird, totally different things. But if you’re already eating pasta, you know, make it more planty, or I’m like looking around at all the different…I have a whole spread of all the photos for all the things in my book. I also have lots of sauces in the book.
I have, again, like a red pepper pesto that you could, um, dip crackers into. If you’re doing, you know, a cracker situation for picnics. Funny enough. I only have two salads in the whole book.
That’s the thing, like, you don’t have to eat salads to eat plants. If you squeeze plants into your normal food, then you’re good. You know, if you’re making a pizza, even if you’re getting like takeout pizza, bring it home, saute some veggies while you know, you’re waiting for it to be done, and add them onto the pizza when you get home. And now you have a plan to your pizza, you know, like that’s the name of the game. Just sneak the plants in.
Miranda: I love it. I love my, one of my other favorite spreads from your book is Toast 20 Ways, because I feel like that’s just such a good, easy thinge to eat. We all know toast, like put the bread in the toaster, right? Like we’ve got that. And then here’s 20 different ways.
And now in this day and age, we all know avocado toast, right? Like, so then that’s a great default. It really is a good default. But when you can add all of these different combinations and things you wouldn’t ever think of, but have that be your meal rather than just like a regular sandwich or whatever else, like a drive through. You know, toast.
Talia: Yeah. All the toast, all the toast. And another way, as we’re talking toast, made me think of all my baked goods in the book. I have black bean brownies, chick pea blondies. And I just did an interview yesterday where I was asked: How do you make healthy eating quick and easy and non sucky?
One of the things I recommend is like appliances. You know, you don’t have to go out and spend a bajillion dollars, but a food processor, which you can get a really small one for like $40 if you want, and then I have a bunch of recipes that you just make in it. And then you bake it after, like, you literally do the entire batter in the food processor, then bake it.
Or you can make banana ice cream in a food processor by just chopping up frozen bananas and blending it. And then you have soft serve ice cream.
Miranda: So good. Yeah. That is a plant. Fruits and vegetables. I once did a Whole 13. It was a whole 30, except for, I made it to Day 13 and my go-to was the frozen banana, but I would put roasted cocoa nibs in it. So then it was just like chocolate banana. It was so good. Yeah, that was probably the best part of my Whole 13.
This is a realistic question. I mean, because I know you’re, you’re not only an author, a cookbook author, and a comedian and a personality, but you also are a certified holistic nutritionist and a chef, right? Like these are all things that you you’ve gone to school. You have these like credentials.
I feel like people can be whatever they want without the credentials, but you also have these credentials and you’ve gone through all of the learning.
So here’s a valid question. When I did Whole 13, I was also training for a half marathon. And I felt like I couldn’t…the reason that I only got to 13 days with my Whole 13 was because I ran out of energy. And it felt more important to me to run my mileage, to keep up with my training for my race than it did to alter my diet in that way that I felt like I wasn’t getting enough carbohydrate.
Tell me, what would you have done if you’d been my personal nutritionist then?
Talia: I mean, I honestly would have done exactly what you did, listen to your body. And a lot of people wouldn’t have the courage to do that. A lot of people just say, well, I made a commitment. I’m sticking to it, but you listen to your body. And so that’s really what I would say.
I mean, what happened for me was I was vegan after that smoothie for four years. And I was known as the vegan in my world, “Hi, I’m Talia, nice to meet you. I’m a vegan.” That classic person, just my identity. I wore it like a tattoo on my face. And I started doing CrossFit and I started getting sick after every workout. And I would just do a workout and I’d be like bedridden for like a day or two because I was just exhausted.
And I learned that I just can’t keep putting in food. For me, I wasn’t getting enough to not get sick. And so interestingly, I started noticing on my then-boyfriend’s plate, like, wait those eggs. Like I think my body wants them. Wait, what? No, you’re a vegan, Talia, shut up.
For six months I stopped myself. Every time I’d have like a physical yearning for his eggs or his fish. And finally I’m like enough is enough, and I had like egg whites and like the world didn’t end, even though I thought it would. I was like, you know, this happened, Oh my God, are there cameras, I’m going to break my identity.
But I felt so much better. And now I would say, I’m a…if you give it a label…I’m a pescatarian. If I do a heavy strength workout, I will eat fish or eggs. If I’m just running, you’re a runner, you don’t need a ton after like just a general four mile run or something. So I’m, I’m perfectly chill with just the plants.
But it’s about listening to your body and picking up the signs and giving yourself what you need. Now I told this to a vegan on my podcast and she said, you probably weren’t getting enough calories. You could have worked harder to get more. You could have eaten a lot more calories. You could have really worked harder to like get the proper nutrition.
That’s great. That’s fine. That’s one approach. That wasn’t my approach. So I think we need to do what really feels right for us. And honestly, do you have regrets? I feel like you did exactly what your body asks for.
Miranda: No, I feel like, I feel like I am pretty good at trusting my body. I have a little bit of a background in nutrition as well. I’m a registered nurse in my previous life and I worked as a diabetes educator. So I did nutrition and exercise therapy with people with diabetes for five years.
And it’s so interesting because I feel like when you’re in it, you’re like really in it, you know, like we were eating so clean and because I was working all day and then I’d come home and I was doing all the shopping and all the cooking and, and so I was wrapped up in healthy eating nutrition.
You know, I was just like, nutrition is life. Like how could anything be different than that? And then when I stopped working and had my third child and we moved and it was like the less that I was inundated in the world of nutrition, the easier it felt to not eat as healthy because it just wasn’t top of mind all the time.
And so that’s why earlier in the episode, I just said it’s so good to just have the reminder because most of my audience, most people in the world are not living in a world of nutrition. Like they’re not thinking about it. They’re not reading about it. They’re not listening to it. Not everyone needs to be a nutritionist. Not everyone needs to think about it all the time. And so it’s really helpful to have little moments.
Like I think more of us could do a better job of trusting our bodies and trusting our bodies with some touchstones in our life of, you know, plants are good for you across the board.
Because I can listen to my body and eat a dozen donuts, too. You know what I mean? So I feel like finding that space where I’m trusting myself and also doing it within some sort of general guidelines of what will move me again towards my ultimate goals of health and happiness and not so far away.
Talia: Absolutely. I mean, I think trust your body or listen to your body is tricky because some people are like, Oh, well, my body is saying, I want the Oreos. Like my body’s calling out for the Doritos and the Cheetos.
I actually write about what I call my four block radius rule or whatever, which was that I, when I was living in Williamsburg and this was just crazy. I went from when I started eating plants, having to make my own almond milk right. In Williamsburg, just a few years ago. And I was writing the book, I had like six different vegan ice cream options in like a five block radius to me, like what was life? It was crazy. And I would find myself like finishing up dinner, like watching TV or whatever, and be like, Oh, I need ice cream.
And I had to pause, because there were times where I would then proceed out my door. No bra, flip-flops, sweat pants, like a zombie, you know, be like just listening to my body.
No. If I think if you asked to do like weird things like that, my body was not like we need ice cream in order to like thrive right now. You know? Like that was a craving. And so there’s like a difference between like manic, crazy cravings and what I call yearnings, you know?
So when I was looking at my husband’s eggs and my body was like, you need that, you know, that was a yearning, but when my mind or I’m scrolling on Instagram and I see a cookie and then I’m like, Ugh, I need cookies. That’s not listening to your body. So kind of learning the difference between that. Trusting the difference.
And also like you said, having it in the context of just eat more plants than crap, and making that your norm, I think then you’re pretty much good to go.
Miranda: I love thinking about that. Like what happens after I either satisfy this craving or I decide to just resist it, you know, like after the ice cream, do I then feel better or do I feel worse? And again, that’s choosing the discomfort because you can be in a little bit of discomfort thinking, Oh, I kind of want ice cream, but it’s midnight and I probably don’t need ice cream, even though I’m bingeing this Netflix special and it would be really nice.
But I can sit in this discomfort, or I can have the ice cream. You know, I think ice cream is great. I love ice cream, but do I then feel closer to the person that I want to be, or do I then feel further away because sometimes you have the ice cream and not only do you not feel well because it was midnight and you probably should have been sleeping instead of eating ice cream, but you also then feel guilty or you input.
I mean, that’s self-imposed right. But we have to recognize that if there’s some of that happening. Do I binge and then guilt trip myself and shame myself for the choices that I’m making.
Would it be easier for me to sit in discomfort or kind of experiment with the idea of resisting urges rather than always giving into my urges? And I mean, these are all just, it’s not only food.
Again, I like go back to how, Oh, these are all the same skills that we’re using in every part of our lives. In my course, the first lesson that we do in Live Free From Clutter is about responding versus reacting and creating that space to make an actual decision, rather than just trusting that every impulse we have is correct, because that is not true. Every impulse and urge and craving that we have is not for our betterment.
And when we create a little bit of space, we can start to see that. And then from that place, trust ourselves more than if we just re re react to everything that comes along. You know what I mean?
Talia: Yes, that is exactly what your whole book is about. Noticing how things make us feel. And I did a podcast episode when I moved, featuring your book and I love you and everything you do, but you really made it like guys, like look around at your items, how do they make you feel?
And that is the exact same philosophy that I have with food. Choose your food based on how it makes you feel the same way as you would choose an outfit. Does this shirt match the pants? Does this meal match how I want to feel?
And there are some times where I want to feel sluggish on the couch, watching Law and Order with ice cream. That’s fine, but it’s a conscious choice, right? That’s the difference. It’s a deliberate choice. It’s not just willy-nilly and Oh man, I feel like crap. Well, how did that happen? You know, it’s, it’s living a life where you are empowered to feel however you want to feel based on the choices that you make.
And that is exactly what your book does, but with more like physical items.
Miranda: We are so on the same page. I love it. It’s so true. I think that that is just it like your philosophy, your book, all of the information that you share is empowering. It’s giving people that information, the tools, this kind of touchstone, and also you just do it with such enthusiasm and such excitement that it’s not like another mama eat more plants, you know, it’s like you guys, this is so fun. It’s so cool. And it’s, you know, like it’s so fun.
Talia: I don’t know where this excitement comes from. Before this, I was just like chilling, going about my day. And then we started talking about it and all of a sudden I’m just like jacked up. I know what it’s like to not have energy. I know what it’s like to know your potential inside of you, but not be able to let it out due to how you feel or fear all that stuff. And when I started eating the plants and when I had the confidence to start doing that in real life situations, by owning who I was, it’s just magic and everyone can have that.
Miranda: It really is. I think it just comes down to whatever the entry point is for me, it was material goods. For you it was food. But the entry point into understanding how much control you have over the choices that you make in your life. So much of the despair that we can feel in our lives is feeling trapped and feeling like we don’t have choices.
And I know for me, the last couple of months with being in quarantine and the pandemic and school being canceled, one of my sort of go-to stories has been that a lot of my choices were removed and I don’t have the same amount of choices. And that has caused me to feel so sad sometimes in the last few months. And I’m like, Oh my gosh. Nothing about my ability to choose how I feel has changed.
I do that through little things, through still choosing what groceries I bring into my home, and what meals I prepare, and what I put into my body, and how I spend my energy, and how I spend my time.
Even though I’m not going out to the movies, which I really, really, really miss. I really miss it, but it’s okay because I can do so many other things, you know?
So, bringing it home or wrapping it up with the idea that like all of these things bleed into every area of your life. So as you choose to eat more plants, you also feel empowered, even though it feels like it has nothing to do with being intentional with your media consumption or with your material shopping habits or whatever, once you choose to be empowered and to make good decisions or more aligned decisions in one area of your life, you feel that same empowerment in all of the other areas of your life as well. It’s like the everything comes up.
Talia: Yes, that’s exactly it. I mean, that’s how it started for me. It started with me with food and then I realized, wait, the things I choose create the life I live. What if I apply this? I came to the items later. You know, when I was moving, I bought your book, listened to it like a thousand times in Ottawa. And I was like, wait, wow, that mirror makes me feel things, that color wall.
So I started living my entire life based on this philosophy of like, I get to choose, you get to choose your thoughts. We get to choose everything for the most part and get to align our life to match how we want to feel based on the choices we make. I mean, when you do that, you’re unstoppable
Miranda: Magic. It really is magic. So fun. Oh my gosh. Well, this has been so fun. I am going to link Party In Your Pants in the show notes and everywhere. So people can grab it because it’s not, it’s not just a recipe book. I mean, it’s for people who want to feel empowered, feel excited.
I love having the options and the inspiration. I actually just got my CSA and there’s like a million things in it that I don’t know how to use. So maybe Talia can help me with that. And also just like just the, just, it’s like a package of enthusiasm that we can bring into our everyday lives.
So I love that so much. Find Talia and follow along. She’s just the perfect touchstone for that reminder that you need in your feed. Here’s some fun things that you can eat that will make you feel better instead of worse.
Wasn’t that fun? I told you, you would love Talia. She is so energetic, so enthusiastic and really just empowers you, empowers me every time I see something she’s making, sharing, talking about to live more fully into the life that I want. Being as healthy as I can. And having it be part of my real whole life.
I love the simple advice to eat more plants than crap and heading into the summer is the perfect time to just take advantage of the incredible abundance of produce and plants that are available to you right now. I think we naturally shift that way in the summer.
And so just use this episode as some encouragement, to think of some creative ways or some really simple, easy ways that you can get more plants to help you feel a little bit healthier, a little bit happier, and have a little bit more energy for the summertime.
Talia’s new book Party In Your Plants is more like a story of empowerment and humor with incredible recipes sprinkled throughout. I absolutely love it. I’m a cookbook collector. I actually prefer cookbooks to just searching for recipes online. So I love having that, using it as a reference, getting some fun ideas from it, and I will make sure that it’s linked in the show notes so you can check it out as well.
That’s the show today, friends. Thank you so much for being here as always. If you love listening to Live Free Creative podcast, can I ask you if you would pop over and leave a written review on iTunes?
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We’re coming up on a hundred consecutive episodes of Live Free Creative, and I am so happy to have you here listening.
I hope that the show inspires you to live a more creative, adventurous and intentional lifestyle every single week. Happy July. Happy summer.
I’ll meet you here next week. Same time, same place to have a little one year birthday party for my book, More Than Enough. Until then, take care of yourself. Bye. Bye