Slow and Steady

After doing more research about nutritional deficits in those of us with inflammatory conditions I am more convinced than ever that even though I am trying to improve my diet by eating lest processed food and increasing my veggies and fruits I’m not hitting my nutritional mark. According to some internet research I’ve been doing it is quite possible that I may need more than the average “healthy” person for my body to function at its optimum.  I have gone from counting calories, trying the primal diet, clean eating, ect all in an effort to get back to a healthy weight.  Right now I am about 25 lbs down from my heaviest and I still have at least 20 to go.  I’m sure I can go on some quick fix diet and lose the excess weight by summer only to find myself in a constant yo-yo state trying to maintain my target weight.  So I am about to Frankenstein a diet that I think will work for me.  I plan to go back to a vegetable based diet.  I will keep my carb count at 150 or less every day, and I will allow myself 1 fun size piece of candy a day to keep me from feeling too deprived.  I will continue to eat poultry and fish but stay away from red meat.  I have vegetarian leanings and I am hoping to one day completely phase meat out of my diet. Right now I’m afraid to do so because I hardly ever hit my recommended daily allowance of iron without giving up meat.  Until I find and incorporate enough iron rich veggies in my diet to meat at least half my recommended daily allowance I will be keeping some meat in my diet.  In addition to really concentrating on keeping my diet clean and vegetable based I will work out at least 3-4 times a week.

Health is a journey and unfortunately there is no quick fix.  I am going to have to understand there will be no 4 lbs lost in a week.  It will be slow and steady for me but I believe eating healthy and exercising will get me where I need to be.  I believe that the long term commitment needed to lose weight in this manner will become a habit and a way of life.  I want a healthy lifestyle more than to look good in a bathing suit this summer.  And who knows, I may even make it to my bikini body by late summer anyway.

This and That

This and That

So last Thursday I got a phone call at work. The message was incomplete but what was relayed to me was there had been a fire in my apartment complex and my apartment had been involved. So I broke a few laws speeding home imagining the worse only to find out that my apartment didn’t actually catch fire. It was the one beside me. Although my house was filled with smoke nothing was burned which was a huge relief. Even though my apartment was still standing it was filled with smoke to the point I had to sleep with the windows open in December! I had some cleaning to do to try and lessen the smokey smell but I was determined to make it to the Arthritis Foundation’s Jingle Bell Run.

It was everything I hopes it would be. It was a great boost to my spirits to see so many survivors of this horrible disease gather on a cold Saturday and defy the the beast by walking/jogging to raise awareness and monies to find a cure. I felt energized by the enthusiasm of the crowd and finished my 5k in 50 minutes. Next year I hope to come in at about 45 minutes.

And then I wrecked my car on Monday. So needless to say that the last week has been filled drama-some good and some bad. My RA has been behaving better than I expected. Sure I’ve been achy and had more pain than normal but I feel fortunate that I’ve not been pushed into a full blown flare.

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Still Here

Runners Take Your Mark

Runners Take Your Mark (Photo credit: Dru Bloomfield – At Home in Scottsdale)

Wow!  It’s been a while.  I’ve thought about blogging often but life (mainly work) has been getting in the way.  But on the plus side, I have not abandoned my journey to health.  Last month I signed up to walk the Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis. I’m really excited because this will be my first 5K ever!  No, I won’t be running.  I am not in good enough shape to even think about running.  Besides, as many arthritis sufferers know winter is not when we are at our peak.  Even though I am in “training” and I’m practicing walking 3 times a week I know my December 7 5K will be a challenge physically.  But I am still very enthusiastic about raising money to help find a cure for arthritis while improving my physical fitness at the same time.

I have discovered some interesting health related discoveries while I have been away.  I have been researching normal weight obesity, intermittent fasting, and resumed counting calories.  This doesn’t mean I have abandoned my goal of eating mostly clean, but the excess weight needs to go now.  I have set the small goal to lose 15 lbs by Christmas this year as a gift to myself. It’s doable.  I just have to apply myself and use every trick in my arsenal to get there.  I don’t want to do any fancy cleanse or fad diet that will have me regaining the 15 plus 5 more in a matter of months.  I am looking for habits that I can use throughout my weight loss and health journey.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Getting It

It’s hard when the people around you just don’t “get” where you are coming from.  And it seems especially difficult when those close to you don’t “get” the lifestyle changes that are necessary for you to be healthy.  During my detox fast and in the days since breaking my detox it has been difficult to get people in my circle to understand that I can’t return to my previous eating habits.

I will have to get used to co-workers peering into my packed lunch and making jokes about how my food choices will result in gas and frequent trips to the bathroom.  I will have to learn to smile at the jokes that are made claiming that all I eat are nuts and berries.  I will even learn to ignore the insistence that I should cheat almost daily or the concerns that I am not getting enough protein because I no longer eat meat every day.

After all I am the one who has the most to lose if I continue down the path that I was on that was leading me to poor health.  The extra weight and strain on my knees does not affect those close to me in any way.  They do not have to worry that the inflammatory foods that they consume on the regular basis only aggravate the autoimmune disease raging in their bodies.  That can’t rap their head around eating 6-8 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.  All my friends and family can see is that I am certainly not on the SAD diet anymore (Standard American Diet).

I am embracing a plant based diet the best way I know how.  The benefits, for me, were almost immediate. I just feel stronger.  My better nourished body seems to handle the daily ups and downs with RA better.  I haven’t seen a lessening of my symptoms.  But it does seem that I am able to deal with the aches and pains better.  It is as if even though one thing isn’t working right everything else is working so much better.  And I need this added strength that I am getting from my new lifestyle to deal with my increasing RA symptoms.

I guess what I am trying to say is that those around me don’t need to “get” my healthy journey.  All that matters is that I am slowly and surely figuring out what I need to do to have optimum health.