Monday, October 26, 2009
Just letting you in on my thoughts today!
Yes, you know I did the 7 Day Raw Vegan Detox recently, and it was great. I discovered that I CAN do what I set my mind to doing! I already knew that! I am very good at carrying through with what I say I will do, even if I doubt myself all the way! I am working on that one too and one day I will no longer be so doubtful of my abilities. Hah!
This past week, I began adding other than raw to my diet again, gradually, while maintaining about 70% raw and NO meat at all. Like one day I had some nonfat plain yogurt. Another day I had some natural peanut butter or nuts on my vegie salad. Then I had half a slice of bread with nonfat cheese. Still doing very well caloriewise. I did notice a slump in my energy and do not like it! Anyway, what I have decided, for now, is to slowly clear out the things that I had purchased BEFORE I got excited about the Raw Vegan way of eating. I will do another 7-day detox down the road a bit. And then I will return to probably 85-90% raw produce with an occasional, what do I call it? Hmm, I want to say slip, but it will be an on purpose and planned sidestep. I am not comfortable with saying I will do 100% because I do have a taste for some things that are not vegan that I consider healthy and deliberate choices. I also recognize that some of our social obligations will make it extremely difficult to maintain a raw vegan lifestyle of eating. Anyway, I am convinced this will help me reach some of my healthy goals with which I´ve been struggling for too long.
I have the remaining months of 2009 planned out, just need to map the steps to complete the things I must get done. I have my sights aimed on January and the first months of 2010 when I will define MY 2010 goals and map out my plans for reaching them. I am delighted that this is getting to be easier and that in my 3+ years with SparkPeople I have gained momentum in other areas of my life besides the health choices and goals. One year before our son was taken from us in death, I found myself completely stuck and unable to get a grip on my purpose. When he died, although I really was realistic in dealing with all the ramifications of our life turned inside out, it has taken me these ten years to find my bearings, redefine MY purpose in life, begin to make my own life choices, not allow others to do that FOR me or to define who I am, and to move in the direction of my goals. It is liberating and I have begun to feel excited about each day that I´ve been given. After all, THIS is MY life!
This morning I read SparkFriend AZIMAT´s blog that encouraged me, so I share it with YOU.
Have a great new week, SparkBuds and perusers!
Sunday, October 18, 2009
I’m in love with fresh produce!
For the past seven days, I have been doing an experiment of 1 – ME! I have been super-frustrated that (1) last year I reached 161 and size 12/14 M – 40 lbs lighter by May and then, on our 6+ month leave to the U.S., I slowly gained 10 lbs. giving in to the amazing temptations I had not seen in a good while. I figured, hey, I’ll get this off quickly once we are back home and I have access to all that wonderful tropical produce. Then, (2) we returned home, and a number of difficult things happened so that I was delayed on really getting started. Now, mind you, I was making healthy choices all along and exercising fairly regularly, but our lives were interrupted, first with hubby´s eye problems and subsequent surgeries, then my dad’s hospitalization, diagnose, surgery, recuperation and my trip to help out for a month. (3) I keep struggling with sleep and wonder if the one cup of coffee in the morning is making this difficult. And, (4) On one of hubby´s absences from home for his eye, I decided to take a 7 day exercise vacation and worked hard at it. With each notice on my Nutrition Tracker page that I needed to increase my calories to accompany the increased cardio I was doing, I decided to check various articles and info to figure out how much. I increased it. The next time I weighed in (I usually weigh only on the first of the month), I was another 5 lbs over what I was last May!!! Talk about ultra-frustration!!!
Okay, so I cut back again on the exercise and began to watch my calories more carefully. What else to do? I’m not a trainer or nutritionist and haven’t been able to figure this out. I have read a lot of online info and find many differing opinions on losing weight. I figure the only thing I can do is high a trainer or nutritionist. Well, our income is strapped tight and so it’s not an option right now.
I have thought about eating more strictly vegetarian for many, many years. So when a new SparkFriend (FLORIDASUN) found me and began to share in her blogs about doing a Raw Vegan Detox, I thought, hey, I think I can do that, too! So I looked for online info on how to do that and then, with three cloth totes and a big red produce box, I went shopping for a variety of produce. That trip, I bought – mangoes, lemons, oranges, pok choi, basil, red lettuce, arugula, radishes, apples, red peppers, tomatoes, honeydew melon, pineapple, carrots, chayote, cucumbers, parsley, and cilantro – all fresh! Hubby picked up bananas later because I couldn’t find the particular ones that I prefer. And, a friend who works at the grapes orchards brought us a box of premium seedless green grapes! Impeccable timing!
We shopped two other times to pick up more bananas and pineapple. I’ve also used some things I already had in the fridge and freezer – watermelon, green peppers, corn (the last two days in my salad), and some frozen fruit pulp (strawberry, açaí, and acerola cherry).
The plan: eat what I need to eat of only raw fruits and vegetables trying to stay within calorie limits as suggested by SparkPeople. Suggested - fruit breakfast and after supper snack, salads lunch and supper. I tried to stick to that pretty much. My favorite snack is now 2 frozen bananas blended with açai pulp with a little cold water.
I have eaten nothing else, no spices, no salt, no sugar or sweeteners. I have drunk only water, lemon in water, smoothies made from that produce, and once a fizzy mineral water. Oh, and on the very first morning, I did drink a cup of unsweetened green tea for my headache. THEN, I discovered that I should not be drinking any teas and took it off my mental list of drinks. I have tried to get in at least 8 glasses of water and have exceeded that on all but one day.
How did I feel?
Day One – hunger pangs early in the day, exhaustion and headache, blurriness and a floaty kind of sensation, and coughing a bit more phlegm than usual (I have an undiagnosed problem with my larynx). Skipped exercise. Slept 7 ½ hours.
Day Two – very sleepy early in the day so napped twice with thoughts throughout the day of bread and cheese! Strength Exercises. Slept 9 hours.
Day Three – headache all day. Elliptical Trainer. Slept 9 hours.
Day Four – woke with a headache that quickly passed and a bit of middle backache. Strength Exercises. Slept 6 hours.
Day Five – nothing significant, except that every time I saw my image in the mirror, it seemed to shine. I kept thinking of Daniel when he spoke to the king’s headman asking that he and his friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, could just eat vegetables and drink water. When they were in doubt about it, he said that they could test them for ten days and compare them to the other young men. After ten days, they looked healthy and better nourished than all the others. Elliptical Trainer. Slept 5 hours.
Day Six – cramps in my calf woke me in the morning; I was gassy and felt pretty tired by 7:30 in the evening. Strength Exercises. Slept 10 hours.
Day Seven – nothing significant. Elliptical Trainer. Slept 8 hours.
Today – I feel great but have a bit of tension in my shoulders, which I am certain is stress over the project on which I’ve been working. I decided to measure today. In these 7 days, I have lost 3.5 lbs, ½” I my waist and calves, and dropped from 30 to 27.38% body fat! I think it’s party time, don’t you?
FINALLY, after a year and a half of struggle, I am moving back to where I was almost a year and a half ago!!!!
Starting today, I will gradually add a few things back to my plan. Don’t want to overdo it and don’t want to stress my insides, so I will be careful. After all, this is MY Life!
Sleeping Beauty? How You Can – and Why You Should – Sleep Like a French Woman, by Mireille Guiliano
Get off of caffeine and why
Sunday, October 11, 2009
That´s funny - I don´t know that I ever have been on my rocker, if ya know what I mean!
WARNING: What follows is NOT a plan recommended by SparkPeople. I am going to do the Raw Vegan eating for just 7 days and then decide if I will continue. I love my seeds, nuts, sprouts, and homemade bread, so I´m pretty sure those will make a comeback!
Well, I’ve done it! I have begun a Raw Vegan Detox. I skipped my 10 min/day cardio streak because I decided not to overload my bod´s reaction to this.
Last night, we went to a meeting where we were served (actually, in order to hide that I was not eating, I got up and helped to serve) a hot, very sweet corn pudding. It was made by one of the sweet ladies in our group. I’ve had this before so I know how yummy it is. Everyone else thought it was too bad that we had a neighborhood power outage just before starting the meeting. I was grateful to be unseen in the dark! Candles were lit but not enough to make faces visible. I stayed quiet and sipped on my bottle of mineral water. I had a peeled and sectioned tangerine in my purse just in case I felt hungry. I didn’t. Just had that tangerine as part of my supper tonight!
I have considered doing this for many years. Just never felt like I could do it without running into a lot of criticism. Much has changed in that regard – people who did that have moved on and hubby pretty much does his own thing in regard to meals – his choices and his choice. So, after a sweet new SparkFriend shared all about her recent experience, I decided now is the time! Did some online investigation of how to go about it – besides what FLORIDASUN (Thank YOU, sweet lady) shared in her blogs, I found some great resources.
Made my shopping list and went to find what is available on Friday. Can’t fit all of it in the refrigerator so left a basketful unwashed hoping it will make it through perhaps Wednesday when I will go out again to replenish my supply. I really do not know how much I will eat. Wished for celery and berries but none of those. Besides the normal things, I did find fresh basil, radishes, and arugula. The kind of bananas I prefer were not available, but hubby went out Saturday and found some for me.
So I fasted until supper, only drinking water and sipped on a cup of green tea. Wouldn’t have gotten the tea except I felt exhausted, had several spells of blurry vision with a kind of floaty feeling. I stopped my normal morning coffee on Friday and so wasn’t expecting any kind of withdrawal sensations. Also had a headache part of the day and am coughing up icky phlegm. I have a problem with my larynx, it seems and will have that checked once my dental work is completed. Took an hour nap with a cat. Felt hungry off and on especially when feeding the cats. Funny how appealing that chicken smelled!
This evening after eating my fill of fruit, I feel so satisfied and pleased that I was able to do this today. I didn’t accompany hubby when he went out this evening. Thought it best to rest and eat properly, probably going to bed early. Even though tomorrow is a holiday, I won’t be taking one – have some things to take care of and hope to finish that little project that I set aside on Saturday.
“I only have one life. I just want to wake up every morning happy to be waking up and excited about what I’m going to do that day. That’s all I ask. That’s my goal.”
Interview of Tonya Kay by Frederic Patenaude www.fredericpatenaude.com/pdf/tonyak
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Today, I was searching for a particular blog of mine and didn´t find it! I must´ve made those comments on a message board somewhere! Oh well! I got caught up in the number of comments made to each one of MY blogs. On April Fool´s Day (4/1) 2006, I reluctantly started My SparkBlog, a little while after I became a SparkPerson.
What struck ME today is that not very many comments were made to my blogs until months later. From that first blog until July 14, 2007, over a year later, out of my 80 blogs, 16 had comments. My first 41 only one had one comment. I made only 2 to 4 blogs a month, most of them very short.
It was such a lonely beginning! It was a very lonely first SparkYear! I did have some SparkFriends, I had joined a few teams, and I frequented many message boards.
Nowadays, it amazes me when I discover a Sparker who has few or no SparkFriends! It just doesn´t make sense to me anymore. I don´t know why this happens because we do have many opportunities to reach out to one another. Maybe it´s just shyness. Many changes have been made to the site since I began and I am most grateful for all of it!
I know that I am guilty of not visiting my own SparkFriends as often as I´d like. What a delight to find others responding and relating to my blogs. I love reading others blogs. I am impatient to hear from my SparkBuds with encouraging words that boost me in many ways! I hope I do that for each one as well. If only I had more time, I´d search out those lonely ones who are determined to walk their SparkJourney even if it means alone or against their peers or family.
Yep, sometimes it is a lonely walk facing our challenging days. I know the payoffs are worth it and that´s why I plan to continue my SparkJourney on purpose! After all, This is MY Life!
Monday, September 28, 2009
This past weekend, starting on Friday, two of my SparkFriends, AM.GIRLINBRAZIL and BRZLLASS (actually I´ve known these ladies for a lot longer than the time we´ve been together on SP!) were able to get together for some fun and chatter, food and laughter, at MY house! We started with a barbecue for lunch, counting everyone we had 9 people. Lots of wonderful conversation and laughter! I decided I would be careful and that I would not deprive myself of anything I really wanted. Did well in that respect - the only thing that I would´ave otherwise avoided was the hamburger bun. It was all soo good! AM.GIRL brought the best potato salad - it´s been a long time since I´ve had that!
Saturday morning, BRZLLASS and I went downtown for a fast walk and through the fabric stores to pick out material for her new bedspread and curtains that I am going to make! Can´t wait to finish my other projects so I can do this one for fun! I do love creating things! Then Sunday morning, we took a 3 mile walk with Leslie in the a/c! Remember it´s beginning our hottest time of the year here in the southern hemisphere!
One of the most important things that SparkPeople has done for ME is to provide the incentive that comes from the encouragement of others to make healthy choices. It is great when I find that it has added new dimensions to the lives of long time friends as well! I hope YOU find it so in your life too! After all, we only get this one lifetime to do it right, and, this is what I am choosing for MY Life!
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