Journey to wellness with Melyna Amyot

Melyna Amyotc (@melynaamyot) is a Toronto based Instagramer, whose journey to wellness began 3 years while going through a difficult time. What started as a 30 day challenge has now turn into a lifestyle. Here Melyna shares her story of how she got into wellness, how she stays motivated and and favor work out.

When did your interest in wellness begin?

I'd say my journey began roughly 3 years ago. I had just dropped out of Art School and was going through a difficult time which resulted in fostering this really negative relationship with my body and food in particular. I was sick, tired and unmotivated. A friend suggested I try going Vegan for a month and that's all it really took ! I had to really research what I was putting into my body to fuel it properly and the more I learned the more I became passionate about cooking and understanding the power of plant based food. 

From there it was only natural that as I felt better internally, I could only keep improving externally. And that part I'm still figuring out.

How would you describe your diet now?

Plant based/Experimental are the words I would use. I'm always very curious to understand people's  specific allergen restrictions or food sensitivities so I myself will personally go without wheat, soy, or whatever it may be to really identify and understand how to build proper meals around these modifications. As well as try and educate myself and introduce certain diets out there such as Keto or Paleo for instance while staying true to my plant based roots.

What is currently your favorite workout?

Circuit training and Boxing ! I'm obsessed with the inclusiveness and energy of group training but also love that empowering feeling of one on one time with my boxing coach.

How do you stay motivated (health, wellness, fitness)?

Set a schedule and stick to it ! Holding yourself accountable for your own progress is really what motivates me the most. Reminding myself that no one is going to make the changes I want to see  really puts me in that positive mindset.

Takes us through a day in life of food?

My day starts with half a litre of water and a coffee. Always.

Unless I have a prior morning engagements I practice fasted cardio, meaning I don't eat my first meal till right after my workout.

Breakfast is typically a Smoothie Bowl, loaded Oats or Chia Pudding. Often a  second coffee.

Afternoon snack is a protein shakes with almond milk and Sunwarrior protein.

Lunch is usually Raw. Weather it be a salad or some kind of concoction of whats left in my fridge.

Mid day snacks are veggies and hummus or rice cakes with avocado and nutritional yeast.

Dinner is more often then not some type of stir fry. Whatever is fresh and whatever is available. Usually over brown rice / quinoa or some type of spiralled vegetable. 

I usually end the day with some type of snack.

Where do you go food shopping?

I prefer to stick to local markets (Dufferin Grove is my fav !) but I also know how difficult sourcing locally year round can be so when I do shop at major grocery store I tend to pick up organic produce.

Who is (are) your favorite Food instagramer that you follow?

@ErinIreland ! Erin has been such a role model to me over the last few months. Her passion for food and vegan advocacy is so refreshing and inspiring. She seems like she has it all figured out.

How do you decide what to make, day-in-day out?

It's always a surprise. I never follow recipes and because I enjoy sourcing locally it's whatever's in season that hits the table. Sometimes it's a disaster but often then not I end up with something new and different.

Where do you get recipe inspiration?

Mostly Instagram. Obviously visual representation doesn't always mean it will taste good so I try and take inspiration from beautiful dishes and try my best to make them really flavourful and put my own vegan twist on them.

Favor dish to make?

Smoothie Bowls & Vegan Mac & Cheese !

What is your guiltiest pleasure?

1000% Chocolate. Zimt & Fitzy's are my favourite. (Both Plant based & Canadian !)

Favorite place to get  healthy food  in Toronto?

Hibiscus, One Love vegetarian, Calii Love & Sweethart Kitchen.

Advice for anyone struggling with getting into health and wellness lifestyle?

Whenever and wherever you decide to start, do so at your own pace. Listen to your body. Thank it everyday for deciding to begin, for being strong, for being able. Be patient and kind to it. It's your forever home.

Favor self-care ritual?

STRETCHING ! I often avoided this step when I first got into fitness and trust me I learned quickly to never skip a stretch again. 

When do you feel best in your body?

I feel best in my body those minutes following a tough workout. My face is red, Im struggling to catch my breath, I feel my heart racing in my chest, my hair has taken on a new life, my body is dripping with sweat and those are the moments you need to be thankful for. You brought yourself to that exact place. There is nothing more gratifying and beautiful to me. 

You can find more of Melyna and inspiration on her Instagram.