Friday, April 23, 2010
Okay, here I am on the fifth day of not tracking my food. So far, so good. The first thing I noticed is that I enjoy my food more because I'm not worried about calories, carbs, fat, protein, whatever. I throw together some meat and veggies and call it a day.
Reading my body's signals is still tricky, but I think it will get better with time. Right now, I'm still in the mode of packing a breakfast, snack, and lunch, and then having dinner and a dessert. The bloating from this weekend's junk-food-fest is going away, though, so it's all good.
Here's what I've been eating: Monday, I don't remember, so it wasn't important. I do know that I had a migraine and thought maybe it was gluten-related, so food involved one slice of bread and some peanut butter. When it didn't help (or hurt), I just gave up on that line of thought.
Tuesday and Wednesday were the same. Root vegetable hash with one egg fried in coconut oil for breakfast, jicama and blackberries for a snack (Tuesday only), lemon-lime seafood salad with avocado , spinach, and homemade salsa for lunch (note to self -- don't bother with seafood if it's not packaged tuna or fresh -- anything packaged sucks), and dinner was chicken breast tenders coated in seasonings, fried in coconut oil, and served with steamed veggies. I think on Wednesday I tossed a Larabar into the mix, and I think on Tuesday there was a banana involved. I think Tuesday also involved an apple-snack from Cordain's book, which was just an apple, some raisins, some carrots, and some cinnamon for flavor. Oh, and Tuesday may have also involved the rest of the prunes. Or that may have been Monday. I don't actually remember. Then yesterday I had some more hash and egg for breakfast, jicama and blackberries for snack, the seafood stuff for lunch, and dinner was two chicken breast tenders fried up in butter and then tossed with some diced tomato, chopped okra, and various Italian herbs, served on riced cauliflower. My husband was jealous! My eyes were bigger than my stomach, though, so I ended up with what looked like two servings when it was all done. Hubby encouraged me to package up the extra for leftovers, but I figured, the chicken and fats were a good portion, it was the veg that was enormous, and really the veg wasn't going to kill me. So I ate the whole bowl. And then I topped it off with some frozen strawberries and coconut cream for dessert. Yum!
While I felt borderline stuffed after yesterday's dinner, I still woke up this morning hungry. So that says something. Today, I'll be making the same foods, but tonight I'll go a little lighter on the veg! And tomorrow, who knows, intermittent fast? I haven't done one this week, especially with the migraines, but I feel like one is in order. We'll see, though. Saturday might be a rough day for fasting.
P.S. I've also started to chew more when I eat. I'm not counting chews or anything, just taking the advice to chew thoroughly, until there are no chunks left. Sure enough, I feel more satisfied after each meal. But I also noticed that I crave water more. I've never craved water! But I suppose this could be me actually listening to my body for once.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
There seem to be a lot of blogs popping up about this topic, especially in the paleo/primal community. So I guess here's where I am coming from.
I have been lucky enough to always be naturally thin, but I have also been lucky enough to know that if I wasn't careful, I wouldn't always be thin. I didn't want to gain weight and then have to take it off, but since I had a raging metabolism as a kid, I could eat whatever I wanted and not worry. That changed around high school and college, which is actually when I started getting concerned about weight.
Yeah, a naturally thin girl being concerned about her weight. Actually, it was because I got jabs about being anorexic or bulimic. So I put on weight -- by eating a ton of chips. I put on 20 lbs., then quickly lost 10 it when I stopped eating late-night snacks. The new, heavier weight made me less embarrased when people asked me how much I weighed.
Then I got concerned with being "healthy" so I started running in the summer. Not during the school year. Just summer. Or, I would do this hip-hop workout off of MTV that I actually really liked, but I often did that workout when everybody else wasn't around (you know, so they wouldn't see me), and then follow it up with a big plate of plain pasta with some red pepper flakes. Yowza!
In college, I tried to eat healthy, but that stuff is nasty. I ended up doing the stereotypical cereal and milk in the morning, then grabbing what I could for lunch, and then hitting the dining hall for dinner. After two years in the dorm, I moved into an apartment and at least there started to experiment with cooking. My weight slowly crept up, although I'm proud to say I never gained the full freshman 10. More like the freshman 7.
My third year, I decided that I was going to get into really good shape, so I took some inspiration from my vegan roommate and went vegan myself. I also looked up a training course so I could run a marathon. All I ended up with was a stress fracture in my foot and five extra pounds. Thank goodness I found weight training. I switched to that, started eating meat again, and portioning my foods according to the ADA's recommended diet (although I was starving all the time, so I ended up replacing some of the carbs in the diety with more meat... I see some foreshadowing here...), and between that and SERIOUS weight-lifting (not the frou-frou moves you find in magazines), I got more toned and ended up back at my high school weight.
Then I moved to Texas to start my masters, and the amount of working out went down, and I made a food-a-holic friend, and I was separated from my boyfriend (now husband), so the weight came back. This time it was harder to get off. But after a year I started doing those diets in the magazines, lifting real weights, and doing lots of cardio again, and the weight came off. It was just always touch-and-go, though. I got back down to what I thought was my happy weight for my wedding, and then just put the weight back on. So here I am, yo-yo-ing because I know how to lose the weight, but I don't know how to maintain it.
Then, just before our one-year anniversary, I was reading Vogue, and there was an article about a supermodel, and it mentioned that she did jump rope. So I searched online for a good jump rope routine, found one, and the site also had an article about the paleo diet. So I researched it, read the book, started the diet, lost enough weight that I went below my high school weight, and never looked back.
But here's the thing. I've been doing the diet for almost a year now, and I've been using SparkPeople to count calories. I've had days where, even though 1800 is supposed to be the high end of my maintenance range, I still end up STARVING. But I'm good, I'm good, and then one day I'm like, "Hey, I have control over this, so why not?" and then go into vacuum mode. Seriously, if I'm stressed, I tend not to second guess myself because this diet really works for me. Yeah, it'll take a week or two for the bloating and the weight to go back down, but it'll go down.
I've had to stop and think, why am I doing this? Why am I doing that to myself? I don't feel guilty when I've eaten the junk, but I feel bad three days later when I'm still bloated and feeling less-than-attractive. That's why I've stopped using the SP nutrition tracker, at least as an experiment. Maybe if I listen to my body, eat when I'm hungry, stop when I'm full, and allow myself the occasional treat, then maybe I won't be as inclined to chow. Maybe if I am just more in touch with how my body feels, and how good it feels, I won't desire anything that makes it feel bad. It's a whole big bag full of maybes, but if there's one thing I think is true, it's that counting calories every day for the rest of my life is not sustainable or desirable. So maybe now, finally, for the first time, I really AM going into maintenance. For real.
Anyway, that's probably way too much info for anyone, but I needed to think that out. My body is telling me that it is hungry right now. I drank a small bottle of water just to make sure, and the tummy is like, "Yup, feed me." So jicama and berries, here I come!
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Wow, yesterday I had a killer migraine. I got all the wonderful stiff-neck symptoms before it hit, plus the sleepiness. I took an hour nap after my morning dentist appointment, took an hour and a half nap after school/work, and then still fell asleep by 10pm. No amount of painkillers could stop this one.
The funny thing is that I had a migraine last week on Monday. But I thought that one was caused by quitting caffeine cold turkey. I had assumed that not having any coffee was causing the headache. In two or three days, the headaches subsided, and I was fine. I still haven't had caffeine, so why the not-so-random Monday migraine again?
I honestly think it was the crap I ate over the weekend. I ate crap last weekend, and I ate crap this past weekend, and when Monday came and I went back to my normal eating habits, I ended up with a migraine. I did a wee bit of research, and what I could find said that the number one trigger of migraines is food, and the number one food they listed was gluten. Okay, gluten isn't a food, but gluten is found in foods that I generally don't eat any more. I didn't used to get headaches from it, but maybe, in spite of the binges, my body is like, okay, I'm over this gluten stuff. I'm not sure.
With my recital coming up a week from tomorrow, it is of the utmost importance that I maintain my diet through this weekend. So, if I wake up on Monday, having eaten all-primal all weekend, and I STILL get a migraine, there's something else at work there.
Maybe sleep? I did also read that too much or too little sleep can cause them in people who are susceptible. I never considered myself susceptible -- I only get them on occasion, separated by several months. But that's why I'm curious why I got one this week and one last week, both after bad weekends of eating junk food. That's also why I suspect the correlation. So, experiment number 1: eat well this week and see what happens on Monday!
Monday, April 19, 2010
Well, I hit the reset button on my SP goals again. I had another rough weekend, and I've decided that something I'm doing must not be working. So my goal is actually to not log in to my nutrition tracker for a little bit and see what happens. I still plan on eating primal, while allowing myself treats. I'll have to see what I can find as far as delicious decadent treats go, but while I manage to take the weight off after each binge, this is not a cycle I want to be in. So this will be my newest experiment. Now that the diet is pretty much natural (except for these binges), I'm really going to try and not restrict my calories. I don't need to lose weight. I just need to be healthy.
I say this because I have a raging headache right now, and I'm sure it's from all the sugar I had this weekend. Either that, or it's from running on the treadmill. Hmmm. It very well could be from the running, but I'm going to decide that it's from the sugar first and work with that.
I still plan on tracking my exercise and participating in my SparkTeams, but just no nutrition tracker. If I find that I start putting on weight, well, then it's time for the nutrition tracker again. But until then, let's make this eating style a life style and not something I need to track. That's the idea, isn't it?
Friday, April 16, 2010
Hubby is getting so close to his weight loss goals! He is now floating somewhere between 200-202 lbs. depending on the day, a big difference from just a few months ago when he weighed 220. The difference is OBVIOUS. He even proclaimed this morning that it was time for him to start wearing belts again. Hooray!
I am trying out SparkSavings in the hopes of getting our budget under control. We never get ourselves into serious debt, but we are not saving anything, either. We should have some wiggle room, but we don't because we're not always conscious of what we're spending. I figure, if SparkPeople worked for making portion control a habit for me, then hopefully SparkSavings will also make budgeting a habit.
Budgeting aside, I did encourage hubby to get himself a treat for losing 15 lbs. So he went and bought some used CDs. I figure he can spend $30 as a reward for losing some weight. He didn't really argue with me.
In spite of this new option that popped up, teaching at Ouachita Baptist University while doing my doctorate, we are still making plans for the navy. While the teaching credentials are cool and all, I just can't imagine being happy commuting for 4 1/2 hours, staying overnight in a guest house, teaching lessons the next day, and then driving 4 1/2 hours back. Given how much I love commuting just 45 minutes to teach my students down the street (I don't), I just can't see that I'd really like that job. I will still send in my CV this weekend and see what happens, but I'm just not feeling it. The navy, I'm still feeling that one.
Well, I think the one thing for certain is that something big is going to happen to shake things up, and that is wonderful. I just have to get through these next two weeks leading up to my recital, and it'll all be good.
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