Monday, October 08, 2012
I finally feel like I'm back in the game 100 %. There is no secret formula or short cut to get your spark back and get motivated and focused again. I've learned that you just have to start doing things like tracking your meals and working out even if you don't feel like it. That's the only way to get your spark back! :) So, I've been working out and eating right and I'm so motivated to start losing weight again. This month, I'm going to challenge myself and push myself a little harder than usual. I'm setting myself four small goals for the rest of the month and if I don't break the streak, I'll reward myself when the month is over. My goals are:
1. Don't eat any candy before Halloween.
Everyone who knows me knows that I have the BIGGEST sweet tooth!! But I feel like I need to challenge myself to give up sweets and sugary treats for just a few weeks to get back control over it. So: no candy (chocolate included, obviously!) before Halloween - and then I'm allowed some sweet treats in moderation.
2. Go for a walk every day.
This is something that is ESSENTIAL for both my physical and mental well-being. Going outside for a nice, brisk walk makes my stress disappear (and I need that right now because of the hair loss issue I wrote about before) and makes my body feel great as well.
3. Track what you eat every day.
This makes all the difference in the world, I've learned. It can seem time-consuming, especially if you haven't done it in a while but once you get in the habit of tracking everything you eat, it becomes automatic and you don't even think about it. And it will make losing weight SO MUCH EASIER!
4. Do just 10 minutes of strength training every day.
I need to start doing strength training regularly again, and I'm going to join follow SparkGuy's example and start a streak: just 10 minutes of strength training a day can make a huge difference (especially mentally!). Some lunges, push ups, crunches and squats and that's 10 minutes right there! :)
So these are the goals for the rest of October. I wrote them down on a piece of paper and put it where I can see it every day. That way I can always be reminded of what I want and track my progress.
Wish me luck!
Thursday, October 04, 2012
So, as I wrote a while back, I went to the doctor this week to try and figure out the cause of my sudden, increased hair loss. They ran some tests and checked my thyroid and hormone levels as they can affect hair loss, and they also checked my cholesterol levels because I asked. I've wanted to know for quite a while now because my dad has had high cholesterol all his life and has suffered from heart disease (and has also had some cardiac surgery). I was scared to find out if my cholesterol was also too high but at the same time I really wanted to know.
Well, today the doctor called with the results. Turns out my thyroid and hormone levels are fine which basically means that something else is causing the hair loss. We are now trying to figure out what it could be. But it also turns out my cholesterol is a bit too high. Nothing too alarming as it's almost in the normal range. I don't know if they use the same units in the US as they do here but she said mine is 5.3 when it should be lower than 5.
I can't say I'm surprised because I had a feeling that might be the case. Now I'm going to focus on lowering my cholesterol by eating right and working out regularly. I'll make sure my saturated fat intake is as low as possible and focus on getting enough unsaturated fats instead (but obviously not too much of that either). I'll eat more fruits and veggies as well as soluble fiber. Also, nuts, green tea, soy, low-fat dairy products, canola oil, olive oil and avocados are all good for lowering cholesterol. In addition to that I know I also need to eat more fish and I'm planning to have salmon with some steamed veggies for dinner on the weekend. My goal is to get my cholesterol down to the healthy range as quickly as possible. I wonder how long that will take? I'll need to schedule a follow-up blood test in a few months I guess. Is it too early to expect results by then?
Are any of you guys dealing with high cholesterol? Do you have any tips or ideas for me to start lowering mine besides the ones I just mentioned? :)
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Well, actually, it's not that sudden. Here's the deal: a couple of months ago I noticed that I was shedding a lot more hair than I normally do during the day. Long strands of dark hair were suddenly everywhere: on the floor, on my pillow, on my shirt and my hairbrush... And when I took a shower, lots of hair fell off. I wasn't sure if it was just a phase (I've read somewhere that people can sometimes shed a lot of hair really quickly but it's normal and the hair will recover) or if it was something to worry about. Over the past month or so, however, the shedding has increased dramatically. My hair wasn't thick to begin with and now it's visibly a lot thinner than it used to be. THIS IS SO DEPRESSING! I don' know what's going on. I dread washing my hair because every time I do, the shower floor is COVERED in my hair and it really scares me :(
I have been eating biotin, multivitamin and calcium supplements since the shedding increased but so far it's not helping. I'm going to see a doctor about this on Monday and he'll probably run some tests (thyroid and hormone levels) to figure out what's going on.
This makes me so sad. I know things could be a lot worse but it's still very scary and depressing. What if I lose all of my hair? I've been reading A LOT (and I'm not kidding, I've been online reading about hair loss for hours almost every day) about this and I know that there is this disease called alopecia and it can cause sudden hair loss. There is no cure for it.
I just hope the doctor finds a reason for this - a reason that can be treated with medication. I know that stress can also cause hair loss and admittedly, I've been very stressed lately with the move and everything else and should definitely look into some stress relief methods. But I don't think stress is the reason for this. Sometimes sudden and drastic weight loss can also cause hair loss but my weight loss has been slow and gradual, and I've been monitoring my intake very closely to make sure I get enough of nutrients as well as calories.
When I style my hair properly it almost looks like I haven't lost any hair at all, but I can feel it and see it when I look myself in the mirror or run my fingers through my hair. It wasn't until now that I realized how much I love my hair (I often used to complain about it for not being thick or long enough) and I swear if this problem goes away I will NEVER EVER complain about my hair again.
I'm trying not to think about this too much but it's very difficult. I can't wait until Monday and I hope the doctor will be able to help me with this.
Have any of you ever struggled with this problem? Any advice or insight would be greatly appreciated!
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