Every year we set out to do something drastic or make a change to our lifestyle, be that health, or fitness. I often find so many of us take great lengths to make a big change and sadly fall short of our aim. One of my 2012 new year resolutions, was to eat clean and exercise well. No fad diets, nothing drastic but to just work out what makes my body perform at the best level. With that it became an experiment and one i could set at my own pace. My husband thought I was crazy and still thinks I am. Every week, I would say “For the next 10 days, or for the next 4 weeks, I’m doing this differently, or cutting that out, or introducing this”. I sat down with a few people I know who are experts in the field of nutrition and asked them questions. I ordered what they ordered. I picked their well researched brains. Then i challenged myself, my mind, my physical fitness and have loved the feedback from my body. I originally cut out dairy (due to our baby boy being lactose intolerant when I was breast feeding). This wasn’t something I had planned but the results were astounding. I dropped weight, felt better and much less bloated. I discovered rice and almond milk and i realised how much dairy we consume in a seemingly regular diet. I started having warm water with my cereal (that may sound bland and boring but believe me it really is cleansing). I became a vegetarian for 3 weeks and felt lighter and cleaner; it made me realise how much meat i was eating. I started drinking tea. I stopped caffeine for blocks of time and just recently after dropping the coffee again, I had serious headaches which told me my body had become addicted to having an espresso per day. I thought of all the vegetables and fruits i really disliked like carrots, capsicum, watermelon, spinach and started throwing them all in the blender with a cup of warm water and then drinking it as a smoothie. I even threw avocado in there and the drink would last me most of the morning. It was a really good way to jam them all into my system. It’s like having one big vitamin shot in the morning.In short, I tried lots of different ways, foods and experiments and after trying them all, I know what works with my body and how I can perform at my optimum level. I’ve seen first hand a close girlfriend of mine lose 25kg in one year from pure hard work and eating clean; no diet, no fad, just a new attitude and outlook on the way she saw herself. I’ve also seen my eldest sister choose conscious eating and the right amount of exercise to now look amazing after having 2 babies. The big point here is that we don’t necessarily need to do diets, or quick detox – you purely need to TWEAK your eating habits, start off slow and see what result your body gives back to you. I’ve set myself the challenge for the next 10 days to be really clean as we enter the festive season so I can really let loose on Christmas and boxing day. Work out what works best for you, not the latest book or what your girlfriend is doing. Every person has a different body, metabolism and will to achieve how they want to look, feel and function. Next time you think of making a big drastic change, just remember to tweak. and tweaking your food habits will lead to a longer lasting process!