Friday, February 25, 2011
I like to think of starting a new adventure as being something truly noteworthy: learning to ride a bike, a first kiss, a newborn child...replete with thrills, chills, and spills. The kind of thing you won't forget; something that lives on and on in your memory, where the mere mention of it captivates and excites you.
Well...not this time, dammit.
No, this particular adventure (if you can call it that) travels down the same road, harbors the same dangers, the same mistakes, the same ol' blah-dee blah, blah, blah. One that has become so repetitive, in fact, that it's more of a chore than anything, like coming to work five days a week and/or doing dishes. Craptastic stuff, really.
I want to change my lifestyle. All of it. Not even kidding.
I'm a passively passionate person about self-improvement. I "know" all the tricks of the trade, read all the books, been through all the motions. One item in particular-healthy living-has so effectively alluded me that I wonder why I even bother at all. I
love the idea of it...rising at 6 a.m., taking a deep breath, knowing that I slept well and feel it in every inch of the marrow of my bones, partaking in a good bout of cardiovascular activity for 20-30 minutes, hopping into the shower, dressing and then cooking a scrumptious, well-balanced breakfast, then coming to work happy as hell because I am the picture of beaming health and NOTHING could get me down.
Ah, fairy tales. Aren't they NEAT?
As a full-time working mother of two and the proud owner of an anxiety disorder, my lifestyle, as it sits, is condusive to all manner of worrying, flipping out, giving up, and wondering just what the hell I did to deserve such a scattered mind. I mean, really. When I'm calm, I am the master of my environment-organized, proficient; productive. I have a great, analytical mind. It's just that my brain is also like an ADHD child that hasn't had their medicine, in like, a week. The slightest inkling of excitement is enough to utterly demolish any good intention or worthy goal I ever entertained, just like that.
Have you ever seen a tizzy fit? They're really neat, too.
However, there is reason to hope. My second to youngest sister and her husband are currently participating in a program called Crossfit (which, to me, sounds like a cross between Navy Seals boot-camp and Dante's seventh ring of hell) to amazing results. Being tired of being tired, and wanting to live my fairy tale, I spent some time with her inquiring about what particular changes to their lifestyle have contributed to their continuing success and "beaming health." Although I am moderately arthritic (damn you, genetics!) and really want no part of Sgt. Pepper's pound-your-body-til-you-puke regimen, I did have some questions about the particular diet they have been partaking. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: the Paleo diet.
Also known as the "Caveman" (oogah!) diet...a diet supposedly indulged in by the hunter-gatherers of 10,000 years past and what, evolutionarily speaking, we as human beings are genetically engineered to process with the least amount of worry. Hoahkay...? Annoyingly enough, I have done enough research and endless poring over nutritional resources from recognized authorites out there to be a bit skeptical. Nonetheless, I carried on with my Paleo fact-finding: Oh, yay! I can eat meat! Oh, yay! I can eat a boatload of fruits and vegetables! Oh, yay! Healthy fats? Not a problem. No grains or dairy? Now wait...what the hell...?
Years of examining this thing called the "food pyramid" brought me to a screeching halt. No dairy (with the exception of ice cream) isn't really a big deal. Dairy is host to all manner of inflammatory agents, of which would contribute to my debilitating flare-ups. There are other means of obtaining calcium for the body. Meh. But no WHOLE GRAINS? WTF? No neat little things that scrub your arteries and intestinal tract clean? I dunno about this...
Sis was so excited about having a fellow "cavegirl" in the family she couldn't stand it. I, myself, was excited to try something new. But wiggling in the back of my brain was the question of how removing complex carbohydrates, the fuel of mind and body, could be good in any way, shape, or form. In fact, a debate took shape of comments to a status update from myself on Facebook about it...then the fight was on. My sister-in-law, bless her soul, got the opportunity to wave around her B.S. (b.s...har har har!) in Nutrition and Public Health, championing the Food Pyramid. Seeing the benefits of both systems, I'm stuck. Gotta do more homework...more homework...
I've come to the conclusion that I can't live without ANY whole grains. Note: whole grains. A bowl of steel cut oats, every morning. A good compromise. Also duly noted was the Paleo's adversion to processed/refined foods. As somewhat of a food purist (if only in thought right now) I approved of that wholeheartedly. I can make that adjustment to my diet, too. Now, just add exercise, and...violá! My fairy tale! Right? Right????
We'll see. I'm pretty pragmatic. I know my limitations and my weaknesses. (NO BEER? KILL ME NOW!) I am in day 3 of my altered diet, and I like it. I need change...I actually crave it. But this journey is such a one note fiddle that I can only hope I don't lose my infatuation with it. This blog will document my progress, regress, and everything in between. Like I said...HOLD ON TO YER BUTZ; it's gonna be a wild ride.
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