Waiting for Savasana


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New Year, New Me

Happy New Year. While I am happy to see 2013. I didn’t mind 2012 either. Last night we had a cozy time at home. Movies and video games. A nice family dinner. I had a final glass of wine before beginning my 2nd Whole30 today.
Yep, you read that right, no booze on Whole30. I was concerned that this would be a problem during my first Whole30 in November but it really wasn’t at all. There were times that I missed a nice glass of red wine in the evening but I didn’t crave it.
I like to stay positive when I talk about Whole30, so I will start by telling you what I CAN eat. You ready?
Meat, fruit and vegetables (except no potatoes, no corn and no legumes-Darn it! I still had to tell you what I can’t eat!).
And that’s it.
30 days. No grains, no added sugar, no dairy-including butter, no weird seed oils (canola, corn, grape) of any kind.
I switched it up and started using coconut oil in everything. Oh coconut oil. How I love you!
Was it hard?
No. Not like you would think. For me, it was more of a mental game. I got a lot of complaining from my subconscious in the beginning.
My first two weeks of Whole30, I craved cupcakes. Every night I dreamed of eating cupcakes. I would be sitting at a table full of cupcakes and just munching away. And then I would feel horribly guilty. “Hey! I’m not supposed to be eating these!”
One night, I decided I must be dreaming, so I tried to pinch myself and it didn’t hurt so I realized I was asleep. It was such a relief! I did not want to go off plan in any way. No way!
See, if you mess up and go off plan, you are supposed to start over at day one.
The prospect of starting over made the cupcake dreams seem like a nightmare until I pinched myself.
So what do I eat on Whole30? A lot of meat, quite a bit of eggs, a lot of vegetables and some fruit. Mid-afternoon munchies switched from a scone or cookie or crackers and cheese to a banana or some nuts (but not peanuts-they’re legumes).
My husband made his amazing salsa and I put it on everything. I dipped my meat in it.
I still drink coffee but I stopped putting sugar in it. If I need to change it up, I add a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg.
It was tough initially but eventually, I got used to it.
I also bought the book “Well Fed” and with it, I learned to make some incredible meals for myself and my family. With sauces and garnishes too! My sons’ favorite is a little recipe called “The Best Chicken You Will Ever Eat”. They call it “The World’s Best Chicken” and I swear, they beg for it. Side dishes are vegetables. My kids haven’t even asked for pasta or rice. They don’t seem to miss it.*
*I need to clarify that my children are not doing Whole30. Their lunches include grains and dairy (cheese glorious cheese!) and even some sugar at times, but they eat dinner with me so they get to eat what I eat.
Whole30 changed the way I think about food. And it has changed my family too.
And yes, I had almost immediate results. I dropped ten pounds in mere weeks. It was pretty amazing in and of itself especially since after that trip to the endocrinologist, I had kind of resigned myself to being the weight I had been fighting for two long years. My hair was shinier. My skin was brighter. My eyes even look clearer than they did before. I’m also sleeping much better than I have in years.
There’s a science to all of this. The creators of Whole30 wrote an excellent book that explains all of our chemical and hormonal reactions to the foods we eat in their book “It Starts With Food”. I bought it for my Nook and read it at the beach in one sitting. Eye opening stuff.
But the most interesting thing happened when I finished my Whole30 and began adding in the foods I had eliminated. I will tell you more about that later. I’ll tell you now it was definitely an eyeopener when my new diet became a crazy science experiment.
And you probably think I ran to the bakery for a cupcake the minute I was done with my Whole30. But I didn’t. I still haven’t had a cupcake, even a month after finishing. Even with the holidays. Cupcake free! And I have a surprisingly good reason for staying away.
So today marks my first day of doing this all over again. So far, so good. Eating right and drinking my bubbly water. I feel pretty good.
I even got a workout today. I had coffee with a friend near my yoga studio. On a whim, I checked their schedule before heading home and there was a Yin class starting in 15 minutes. I’ve never done Yin before. It was ok. It felt like an hour of stretchy shavasana. Meh. I guess I like to work harder than I thought. Who knew? Whatever, it’s New Year’s Day. I decided to begin my year with a meditative whisper. That’s ok.
However, I think tomorrow is a run day. So if you see a chubby teenager running down the street with two kids on scooters and her crazy dog in tow.  Yeah…that’s probably me.  Be kind when you drive by.  We’re all doing the best we can.

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Another Year, Another Blog

Years ago, I was a mommy blogger, but then it got weird.  I realized that in all likelihood, my children would not enjoy reading my musings on their young lives.  And so with a bit of a heavy heart, I shut that blog down and I didn’t look back.  And I’m glad I did it too because now you can’t find a single item in the cache…although I’m sure it’s all out there somewhere.  I was relieved to get away from it all relatively unscathed.

Until this year when I turned forty.  Forty.

Forty.

Who thought I would ever get here?  Certainly not me.

I remember my mom turning forty.  I was ten.  After we sang the song and she blew out the candles, I asked her, “Does this mean you are over the hill, Mom?”

She rolled her eyes at me.  If I were her, I would have smacked me silly.

Forty has been a bit rough on me.  Don’t get me wrong, my husband and I celebrated my actual birthday big time.  We left the kids at home and spent a week in Europe.  We saved every penny, every credit card point and air miles credit we could scrounge to do it too.  And we had a lovely time in the City of Light.  It was glorious.  I even wrote “Forty is FABULOUS” on my Facebook status.

And then the vacation was over and we had to come home, back to reality.

And the reality for me is that forty hurts.  No really, it physically HURTS.

My back hurts, my neck hurts, my head hurts.  I find myself slower at forty, more lethargic and less involved in life.

Besides the white hairs that seem to be multiplying daily, I hurt in places I didn’t know existed before forty.

This year has not been easy for me.  It culminated in me breaking down crying in the endocrinologist’s office when she told me there was nothing she could do for my weird hormonal levels that seemed to be contributing to my weight gain and fatigue, despite my desperate battle to run from the fat monster that has been pursuing me for the last ten years.

I knew, walking out of there that warm July day, that I could not do this anymore.  I needed to change my life.

But there is one problem, I am horribly lazy.  No really.  I hate to exercise.  I hate to eat right.  I hate doing the work I need to do to be where I want to be.

But I hate being fat and slow and in pain even more.  Or at least, I think I do.

I hope I do.

I’ve started to run again and I joined a yoga center and have been practicing yoga at least three times a week since September.  I hate love it.

I have also changed my eating.  I did my first Whole30 in November and…yeah…I rocked it.  More on that, later.

But none of this has come easily for me.  And it is frustrating to see how easy it is to talk myself out of that 3 mile run and into a cupcake with cream cheese frosting.

Running.  Ugh! Running.  I love it and I hate it.  I’ve been running since 2007.  I’ve actually run a couple of full marathons and quite a few half marathons.  I run them very, very slowly.  But I finish, and my times are not humiliating but they are not great or even what you would call “good” either.  But I still do it.  I run.  Mostly.  I like my intervals.

You know what I love about interval running?  The walk breaks.  Mmm…delicious walk breaks.  I get one minute for every four.  Worth it.  So…worth it.

And you know what I love about yoga?  Shavasana.  Otherwise known as “Corpse Pose”. It’s the time you get, usually at the end of the practice, when you just lay there and do nothing.  It is my motivation. Sometimes, Shavasana is the only thing that gets me there and keeps me going.

So that is my intention for this blog.  I don’t want to sound melodramatic  but I feel like I am fighting for my life here because my body is very directly telling me that I have got to get off my tush or face some serious consequences.

I am starting Round 2 of Whole30 tomorrow and I plan to blog every day in January.  But still a big part of my brain is saying, “Ugh!  Really?  Can’t you just eat another cookie, throw in the towel and call it a day?”

We will see.  Bring on Shavasana.