Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 29

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 29

I have not done what I set out to do in September.  I have not followed the plan, I have not kept detailed records, and I have not put any effort into what I needed to do this week at all.

The Monster is winning this week.  It is crushing the soul of my inner beauty. What am I going to do about it?

I have to refocus.  I have to make the efforts I need to make to have results.  I am not perfect, and although I was going to try my best, I fell short.  Like not even falling off the wagon, because I never climbed on it in the first place.

What am I NOT going to do about it?  Make excuses.

I am better than that.  I am better than the monster inside that convinced me it was a great idea to eat chips and Fudgsicles this week.  I am better than the monster that is telling me it is OK to eat whatever I want to because I am really hungry and don’t have time to wait for a healthier option to be ready to eat.  I am worth the effort of drowning out the monster with my inner beauty.  I need to let it shine, and help me find the way to becoming a healthier version of myself.

I need to have a plan, not just the THM plan, although that is a part of what I need to do, it needs to be a complete plan that encompasses everything I am working on and makes me want to work at this.  On me.  It is bigger than me just writing about it.  I need to DO it.  So this weekend, I am going to set aside a few hours to get this set up.

Part of the reason is that I am very skilled at making excuses.  I need to stop it.  Right now.  I am on such a roll with my writing that I do not want to stop.  I want to keep moving forward in all aspects of my life and live it to the fullest.  I will also avoid things and just do what I want to do instead of what I need to do if it is easier.  This is not a good way to do what I want to do, which is to lead by example.  I am not feeling the leader vibe this week.  I need to change things and make this happen.

Now. OK, on the weekend, as I am a tad bit busy with the writing and the entrepreneurial dreams and projects I am working on to change my whole life for the better.  The problem with letting the monster win is that I am leaving out a very important aspect of this dream, and that is me.  I need to rank myself higher on the list of things to be taken care of, so the inner beauty has the chance to glow and outshine the monster forever.

I am making a commitment here to have this ready to go for Monday.  I am going to hold myself accountable for taking the steps to make things happen.  Only I can make the necessary plans and changes to have this work.  It is time to take action and stop listening to the monster that keeps me from being the healthiest version of myself.  It is time to open the cage that traps my inner beauty so far inside me that I cannot find it anymore.  I need to let it out and nurture it until it is as bright as the sun.  I need to keep telling myself that I am worth it until I believe it.  Louder than the monster.  Brighter than the stars in the sky.  Over and over again, until I really get it.  And then you will see that I am doing this in front of all who witness it, and I will be accomplishing the dream of leading by example, by working hard to achieve my personal and professional goals.  Other things are starting to fall into place.  This is just the next thing I am on the verge of succeeding at.  Time to shine.

If you are following this series, and like what you read, thank you.  If you have your own story to share, please contact me.  I have accepted other people’s stories in this category and would love to have more stories than my own to share here.  I don’t want to bore everyone with my stories EVERY week, so if this is something YOU want to do, reach out to me.  There is a contact page for that very reason.  I am also willing to work with people to write a story based on an informal interview or having some discussions about their issues, to help other people deal with their own issues, and helping people understand what it is really like to have issues on EITHER END of the scale.  I would be happy to share your experiences, issues, successes, and tips here in the future.  Stop thinking about it.  Stop making excuses.  Let’s work together to change ourselves and the lives we live.  Our inner beauties deserve to be free and thriving.  We are worth every bit of the effort.  Let’s drop-kick those monsters to the curb. Together.  If I can do this, so can you.

Trust Your Gut.

 

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 19

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 19

I got on the scale this morning.  The number wasn’t as bad as I was worried it would be, but it is still not in twoville.  I knew I would not see good news, but as I expected, there were no surprises there.  I know by how I feel what is happening, without getting on the scale every day.  It had been a while, and I needed a reference.

I am having trouble in my kitchen this week.  There has been an invasion of ants.  I have declared war, and I think we are winning.  It is a slow progress kind of war, and it has distracted me from my personal tasks and goals.

I have not had an ant free day in my kitchen all week.  I am seeing less and less ants, and the ones I saw today seemed to be slower than those in the last few days, so I am tentatively hopeful that this means the war is almost over.  I have not wanted to make anything to eat in my kitchen all week, as a result of this.

My healthy lifestyle has become a casualty of war.  It could have gone in two different directions.  One being I stopped eating anything because I am so grossed out about the ants being in my kitchen.  This is not realistic.  I have to eat.  So I did it again.  I ate take out all week.  Let me tell you, I am not thrilled about this, but I felt like it was the only way I could eat because of the ants.

Is it a legitimate thing to do?  Yes.  Is it an excuse to eat out and go the easy route for the week? Yes.  Is it productive and conducive towards my personal goals for living a healthier lifestyle? No.  Is it a budget friendly option? No.  Is it a logical solution? Maybe.  I write that because when I haven’t been cooking, I have been hunting and cleaning up the countertop that the ants are crawling on.  That means all the hard work I did cleaning the whole winter, my coffee station, and the countertops all have to be emptied and wiped clean AGAIN.  For the millionth time this week.  Ugh.

I have made progress in other areas of my life in the last month.  I have been cleaning and purging stuff.  I have been writing about that in my Weekend Warrior Category.  I am preparing to write books, and have been practising on my blog, getting into the habit of writing.  I have done well with both of these projects, and I can let myself be proud of the progress I am making in those areas.  So why is it OK for me to let myself down in the most important part of my life, my health and well being?  It’s not.

I had a genuine blood sugar low today at work.  My sugars were at 3.9 when I tested, and I was in full panic mode when I did.  I can feel it happening in my body.  I start feeling a wave of uneasiness, and I start to panic.  When it is an actual blood sugar low, I get weak and shaky.  My head and scalp perspire profusely.  I mean buckets.  I get a little confused and have a really hard time focusing. I was in a meeting when I started to feel it happen, and I rushed out asap and tested while chewing up suckers and drinking a juice box.  I got some extra candy from some colleagues, and I overcompensated because I was panicked.  It took me about two to two and a half hours to recover from that episode.  I am much better this evening.

I know why it happened.  I went to Zumba last night, and it had been a few weeks since the last class.  I started to get my regular exercise routine back.  I took my normal amount of insulin this morning.  But my body was doing that thing it does when I am trying to watch what I am doing, and it became sensitive to the insulin again.  It is great that it works better sometimes, but it is not so great when I happen to have that in between adjustment period that causes me to have lows and have to lower my doses of insulin.  Which is also good, because it means that I am achieving better control over my blood sugars.  But what a roller coaster ride that can be!

It is hard to adjust to everything all at once.  I am a fighter, and I am still able to do what needs to be done.  Sometimes I need to remind myself that it is not OK to put my own health and wellness on the bottom of my list.  Because it needs to be as important as everything else I invest my time in.  I tell people all the time that I am tougher than I look.  I believe it.  But I also know that I am a human being and that I am not supposed to be perfect.  All I can do is get up every morning and do the best I can in all aspects of my life.  It is a work in progress, and progress is progress, so I will take it and run with it.  Until I can’t catch my breath.  And then I will keep moving in the right direction.  One step at a time.

 

 

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 15

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 15

Up to now, I have been sharing my story and the stories of others with their issues regarding weight.  That means if you are reading this week’s story, and have been since I started writing, you know that I am struggling.  Sometimes week to week other times day to day, but it could literally be bite to bite.  I wake up thinking about food.  I go to bed thinking about how tired I am or am not, and this is usually related to what I ate that day.  When I dream about food, it wakes me up to go test my blood sugar.  If it is OK, then it was just a dream.  Sometimes it is my body telling me that I need to get a glass of juice.

Today was no different than any other Wednesday.  I got up, went to work, went to Zumba, and then I came home.  Where I knew I had meat in the fridge, both cooked and ready to be cooked, but I could not bring myself to start making a healthy meal.  I wanted the easy way out.  I sent an SOS to my husband for fast food.  I was tired when I got home today.  Bone tired.  I decided that I would nap until he arrived home.

Sometimes it is the only way to accomplish everything that you need to do, taking the easy way.  But taking the easy way is not the healthy way to live.  I am living proof of that.  The easy way is not the path less travelled.  The easy way is the way to childhood obesity and the epidemic that I happen to be a statistic of, the Type 2 Diabetes crisis that is blowing up all over the world right now.  If you continually choose the easy meal, the easy snacks, the sugar, the preservatives, the chemicals and the toxins you will not live a healthy life.  It isn’t possible.  It’s called junk food for a reason.

What is the alternative? Hard work.  If you put in the time and effort into yourself, it will pay off.  It doesn’t matter if you stray from the path when life happens.  What matters is that you value yourself enough to go back to the path you have chosen to follow because you strive towards living a healthier lifestyle.  There are always going to be days when you are too tired to cook.  I have had days where I am so tired and hungry that I can’t even decide which restaurant I want to go to.  The main thing is that I don’t give up forever.  I keep trying.  I keep pushing myself to do better.  And I keep celebrating every little success along the way.

I cannot stress the importance of planning ahead and prep cooking enough.  If I had made that casserole last night, I would have had supper planned, and this helps me to make healthy choices.  Sometimes I am too busy.  I planned my lunch today but found I was very cold at work, so I bought soup and BBQ chips to give my circulation a little kick in the pants with some mild spices.  Would I do that again tomorrow?  Not unless I felt the exact same way I did today.  I am usually bundled up in layers at work, but there are limits to what I am able to wear and what they will allow me to wear to stay warm at my desk.  Today I was maxed out on layers, and still cold.  I did what I needed to do to adapt to the day.  It worked.  Tomorrow may be a different story, yesterday I found it a little cold, but tolerable.  Today I could not get warmed up.  This is a side effect of having thyroid disease, sometimes I am cold when I should be warm.

When I am out of ideas for lunch, I plan scrambled eggs and cheese.  I can cook it in the microwave, and I can eat vegetables with it.  I almost made that for lunch today, but I changed my mind and made good old PB&J on sprouted bread.  I am not the biggest fan of this sandwich, so I am using regular peanut butter.  I bought the kind that has no sugar,  which must be stored in the fridge.  It was left too long and dried out.  So for the few times that I make it, I am using regular peanut butter.  When I decide to make something that has a need for peanut butter that is on plan, I will buy more that is made with just peanuts and salt.  I use sugar-free jam.  The sprouted bread is on plan.  2 out of 3 ain’t bad, to quote a song by Meatloaf.  I ate my sandwich after Zumba class, to hold me over until the fast food was here to eat.

If you are struggling like me, then neither of us is alone.  It can be a solitary journey if you are hiding behind closed doors or sneaking around to feed the monster inside.  I am calling it what it is.  A monster that is obsessed with food, and thrives off of sugar.  It does not mean that I am a monster.  It does mean that I have to fight it. The harder I fight, the smaller it will be.  It will reflect on the outside what is happening on the inside.  And that is where the beauty hides.  The beauty that is inside all of us needs to be nurtured and loved.  It will flourish and bloom if we give it the attention that it deserves.  When this happens, you start to glow from the inside out, and the monster shrinks inside.  Just as the monster scares your inner beauty, the glow from that inner beauty outshines the monster if we let it.  As someone who loves to sparkle and shine, I am going to focus on that for the next week, and see where it takes me.

Trust Your Gut is my weekly series that I have decided to publish on Thursdays.  I think it is time to I gave it a hashtag of its own.  Help me to get the word out to other people that may need to read these stories and know that they are not alone.  Help me to reach out to other people that want to help by sharing their own stories.  All it takes is an idea to create something big that matters and can help people.  I am starting that now.
Together we can help people, just like you and me.

#TrustYourGutThursday and #TYGT

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 14

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 14

Getting back on track is easier said than done.  It takes determination and effort.  I have missed a few Zumba classes.  I went today.  I was eating anything and everything, the last few weeks.  I prep cooked earlier in the week.  My insulin is now working well enough to lower my doses again.  Some days it is a fight just to get motivated to do what I should be doing.  Other days I feel prepared to tackle everything.  I am gearing up for another run at living a healthier lifestyle.

Last week I was watching the scale climb.  This week it is starting to go down.  I am working hard to try and stay on plan as much as I can, and it is working.

The last few months I have been consciously trying to drink more water.  It is a good idea, not just for me, but for everyone.  It would be better if I enjoyed drinking water.  I have to force myself to drink water, sometimes.  I have a drinking buddy, my straw!  I need to get it in quickly or I won’t drink as much water in a day.  Straws certainly help with that.

It is time to get out the measuring tape again.  Still, nothing to report.  With the last few weeks of being sick, I will have to take the number on the scale moving down as my encouragement.  It is good that it is going the right way again.

My heart rate was steady in class.  I do love that I can check it.  Now I have to keep a better focus on what I eat and how much insulin I am taking because my body has come around to responding to it well, again.  That happens when I work hard.  I feel better so I want to do more and I do that and I feel even better.  It is possible.  Just not when I am sick. Everything goes out the window when I am sick.

I did go to the doctor last week.  He gave me a different antibiotic.  I bought a probiotic to take with it because we all know the warnings about what happens when you take one antibiotic, and now I have had to take two.  It has been a little challenging to keep track of when I have to take what medicine.  The good news is that it appears to be working, and worth the trouble.

This week I am feeling more optimistic.  When I feel like doing things, there is a better chance that they will get done.  I am finally feeling like trying again.  So lesson learned.  When my sugars are skyrocketing out of control, it is not me, or what I am or am not eating; I am probably sick.  Which is good to know, because I don’t remember this happening when I was off work with my infected knee.  There is a good reason for that. Painkillers.  I was on some heavy duty painkillers.

I am sleeping better this week.  Quality sleep is also important in the struggle to live a healthier lifestyle.  If you are well rested, it will boost the energy.  Again, you can do more.  It can snowball in the right direction.  It is happening for me right now.  It can happen for you too.  If you need help, ask. Don’t be afraid.  If you don’t ask for help, it might be too late.  We are all worth helping.  We are all worth loving.  Believe it.  When you believe that you are worth investing your own time and energy into, good things will happen for you too. One change becomes two, then three and so on.  What change are you going to work on this week?

 

 

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 11

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 11

I bought my first tankini. I went to one store and tried on the one piece swimsuits.  I was disappointed.  So I had to go outside of my comfort zone.  The people working there were helpful.  They told me that the best thing about a 2 piece was that if you had to go to the bathroom, it was a lot easier.  I thought about that and decided to try on a tankini.

The style I chose has a tank top and shorts.  Everything is still covered.  Just like a normal bathing suit.  The shorts are comfortable.  The top was a challenge.  I need support, but didn’t find the right kind in the first few tops I tried on.  Support in a swimsuit = constrictive.  It felt too tight.  So I kept trying on different tops until I found one that fit right in that area.

Then it was the wrong style.  Of course.  So the search continued.  I settled on a striped one that looks just like a tank top.  Then I went swimming.  The top floats!  I didn’t want one that did that, and I was assured that they don’t do that now.  That was my main reason for wanting a one piece.  I was a little paranoid at first.  There is a built-in bikini support in the top.  So I just fussed with it a lot but had a good time swimming.  It will be OK for Aquacise, I think.  It will take some getting used to but I think it will work better than my old swimsuits.  It actually fits and was a size smaller than the other ones I tried.  Yay me!

While travelling this past weekend, I let the plan slide a little.  I didn’t overeat.  I ate healthy choices when I could.  I ate, and I didn’t worry too much about it.  Sometimes life takes priority.  You do what you can, and let it slide a little.  Then you have to get back on track.  For me, prep cooking helps me to stay on track.  I have to do the work so that when I want to take the easy way out, the easy way IS to stay on plan.  I have learned this while on THM, and I am the only person that can make those choices for me, so ultimately, it is up to me.

A friend introduced me to spaghetti squash.  I was reluctant to try it.  I do like squash as a side dish, but I had never tried spaghetti squash before.

It sat in my kitchen for a week before I bit the bullet and tried it.

I was pleasantly surprised!  I now eat spaghetti squash a couple of times a month.  It is good with spaghetti sauce.  It is good in spaghetti pie.  It is good in casseroles.  The verdict is that I like it.

When we have spaghetti, I have spaghetti squash instead of the pasta.  I load the sauce on it, and the parmesan cheese and eat until I am full.  Without the tired feeling that I get when I eat pasta.  I call it SPAGHETTI SALAD! What a wonderful gift my friend gave me when she told me to take that spaghetti squash home to try it.  If you haven’t tried spaghetti squash, try it with an open mind.  It really is worth it for me, and if you like it, you can thank me for the tip after you try it.

If you don’t know how to cook it, I didn’t either.  Here is a link for cooking it in the microwave or the oven:

How to cook a spaghetti squash in the microwave or the oven

I found this link and the one below in my own internet searches, all credit goes to the authors of the instructional pages.  The other method I can recommend is in the slow cooker.  You can find the instructions for that here:

How to cook spaghetti squash in a slow cooker aka crock pot.

So my tip for you this week is to try spaghetti squash if you have never tried it before.  If you already love it, maybe try it in a new recipe, or try another healthy recipe that you have been hesitant to cook for whatever reason.  Just go for it!  And comment below if you did.  Let me know how it turns out!

Do you have a favourite way to cook spaghetti squash or a favourite recipe for making spaghetti squash?

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 9

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 9

Timing is very important.  When I started the THM plan, I was shocked at how often they eat meals and snacks.  I had heard before that you should eat 4-6 smaller meals a day, instead of 3 large meals.  It is incredibly important to make sure that you never get hangry.  Yes, I spelled that correctly;  it is when you are so hungry that you start to get angry.  Just like on the Snickers commercials.  Not that they are the healthiest choice, but in a pinch, they can help you to combat low blood sugar and hangry feelings.  They are not on plan, though.

So how does this adapt in the real world?  I do get breaks at work, and they are not quite at the 3-hour mark, but I make do.  I have fruit and protein for my snacks.  It is really easy to eat an unsweetened applesauce and some laughing cow cheese.  I have also been known to snack on turkey pepperoni sticks.  The kind I like is not too spicy.  I have a low tolerance for spicy foods and am very sensitive to spices.

Meals vary for my lunches and suppers.  I enjoy grabbing a banana on the way out the door, again not on plan, but that is my quick dairy free and iron free start to my day.  The thyroid pill requires water and an empty stomach for it to work properly, to avoid these foods for two hours after taking it, so I don’t have side effects.  I have tried other things, but the food I can eat in the car when my husband is driving me to work is what I choose.  I also have black coffee when I get to work.

When I prep cook, it is the best way for me to stay on plan.  I have tried a lot of THM recipes, and I really like them.  I have been slacking in the prep cooking department.  I have things I can make, but I am not feeling like cooking.  Part of that is the effort, part of it is the storage situation, and the other part is that my husband is not on the plan with me.  Sometimes that requires making two meals, or different side dishes.  Again, more time, energy, and effort.  Not to mention that I don’t jump up to do the dishes every day like I should.  I know that is a different story, but it all ties in together with a big pretty bow.

If I make my lunch, there is a good chance I will be on plan.  When I don’t, I can stay on plan, but it is more difficult to buy lunch and stay on plan.  I am getting better at it, but the budget dictates that I need to start prep cooking again.

There are also meals when my husband and I don’t eat the same thing at all.  If I am eating on plan, he may have something that he likes instead of joining me.  That used to bother me.  Now I try and think that if he isn’t having the same thing as me, then there is more for me to eat and stay on track longer with.  So it is all about perspective.  And timing.

When the time is right for you, the choices will be easier because you are ready.  It took me most of my life to feel like I was ready to tackle this plan and become healthier.  When I found it, the timing was ripe for me to make a change and try something new.  I didn’t know then that it was going to be the answer for me, and that all I have to do is get serious about staying on the plan.  It is time to get serious.  Are you with me?

I Had Sass in Zumba Class!

Surprise at Zumba

I survived another Monday and made it to another Zumba Class!  I really enjoyed the music and the workout today.  I am tired, but I earned it.  We made it to 5,000 steps today!

I knew I was feeling like I needed a good workout.  I felt a little lethargic, but I knew I needed to go.  I got ready and found my place in the Zumba Crew.

I went for it!  Since I have this new smartband, I have been keeping an eye on my steps and my heart rate.  My resting heart rate is around 65.  Well, at one point it was really pumping, I felt like it was working hard.  I checked, and it was at 146.  Exercise success!  I increased my heart rate!  I paced myself for a bit with the music and brought it down to 85.

Then the music sped up again.  I was feeling it, but not like earlier.  It was back up to 101.  I worked out hard tonight.  It was a good class.  I managed to calm down without panicking about my heart rate when it was pumping really fast.

We were near the end, and I heard a song I knew the moves for.  So I got into a groove and was told I had some sass in the class tonight.  I was just getting my Zumba on, and I guess others noticed.  It is good to be in the Zumba Zone.  It was a great finish to another Monday.  My heart rate is closer to normal now, back at 75 beats.  So I have recovered from my workout, and now I can relax.

A quick google search gave me the answer to what a good heart rate during exercise is.  220 – your age= the maximum heart rate you should have to still be within a healthy range.  I still have wiggle room with that calculation, and with my weight being quite high, I do not want to max that out. Yet.

A target resting heart rate is 60-100 for the average person, and 40-60 for an athlete.  I guess I have some work to do on that also, but generally, my resting heart rate is near 60, so I am going to keep on believing that I have a strong, healthy heart, and keep on going to Zumba.  I like it, and it is good for me!  I got my heart rate up, and I had fun!  Those are 2 key points to remember when I am dragging my feet and don’t want to make the effort.  I AM WORTH THE EFFORT!  It certainly makes me feel better, and helps move the stress of the day job out of my system!

It’s all good, and when I pace myself, it is OK.  I am comfortable in my Zumba Crew and sometimes I dance to a different beat, but I am still there, and I am still dancing my way to being healthier.  Although I am tired after a really good class like this, I never want to stop!  It is a good tired, the best kind, and I had fun getting there. It is good for my heart and soul.  So I intend to keep going for as long as I can!

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Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 6

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

 

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

This week I am pleased to share another of my own stories.

Here is  Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 6

When I first found out that I was a type 2 diabetic, I had experienced being at “goal weight” about 7 years before the diagnosis.  I successfully lost enough weight on the Weight Watchers program when I did it with my mom back in high school.  After that, I got sick and put on more weight than I had ever dealt with, and since then, I peaked at almost 320lbs.

I am hovering at the edge of “twoville” again, and really hoping that this is the year for me to find my way back to “onederland”.  Twoville is in the 200 lb range, and it starts at 299.99lbs.  Onederland is in the 100 lb range and starts at 199.99 lbs.  That would be an amazing accomplishment.  I can only imagine how that will feel, as it has been longer than a decade since I have weighed in at under 200 lbs.  I think it is a reasonable goal, for one year, and if I make it, fantastic, if not, I will keep fighting the good fight.  Because I believe I am worthy of living a healthier lifestyle, and I can do it if I just put in the effort.  A goal needs to be realistic, and if I put too much pressure on myself, I will fail and be crushed under the weight of that failure.

So I keep going to Zumba, twice a week.  I am preparing to start walking in my neighbourhood in the evenings.  That is also preparing for adopting a dog.  Part of the reason that I want to bring a dog home to live with me is because I know I will HAVE to go for walks more than once a day, EVERY day.  The dog will benefit from living in a loving home, and my health will have to benefit from all the walking.  It is a good plan, and I will have until next winter to prepare myself for walking in the snow and ice.  By then I will be in the habit of the daily walks, and I will be ready to tackle the bad weather walking as a healthier version of myself.

I am so looking forward to having a dog in my life again.  I have friends with dogs, and friends with cats.  I visit them when I can, but it’s not the same as having my own pet here all the time.  My house has been very quiet this winter, with no pitter patter of furry friends to come home to.  I needed time to mourn for my cats, and decided it was time to get a dog, in the spring.  We will be getting ready for that in the next couple of months, and when the right dog crosses our path, we will give it a furever home.

When I first found out I was pre-diabetic (there is no such thing, it is a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes; the doctors just break it to you gently by saying not yet, but really you are a type 2 diabetic).  I was told that I would have a chance of not needing medication for it if I removed sugar from my diet, and ate according to Canada’s Food Guide.  I tried.  I failed.  I was so tired all of the time.  I was drinking up to 2 litres of cola a day for the caffeine because I was so tired all the time.  The sugar was making me tired, so the caffeine was not keeping me awake.  I began drinking more cola for more caffeine, and it never worked for very long.  I know now what I was doing wrong.  Then I switched to diet pop.  Aspartame is something I have removed from my life since then.  I now choose stevia and erythritol for my sweeteners and drink very little pop.  I have one can a day, and not every single day.  I choose pop sweetened with stevia, and it took a bit to learn to like it.

I now drink my coffee black.  It is healthier this way, and now that I am used to it, I like it like this.  Less fuss to prepare it in the morning, and no worries about not wanting to drink it because there is nothing in it.  I sometimes drink green tea.  I sometimes drink oolong tea in one of my THM drinks.  I do not use cola for my main source of caffeine anymore.

I did not tell everyone about being a diabetic for a long time.  I feared the food police.  I learned this term from a diabetes educator.   They are those people who immediately point out what is wrong with everything you eat.  You are the person with diabetes, and everyone else thinks they are the expert.  It is embarrassing to be an adult and have someone tell you that you shouldn’t eat that because you are a diabetic.  Out loud.  In front of a room full of people.  Or to say that isn’t good for you, because it has sugar in it.  People don’t mean any harm, I know it is being said because, on some level, they care about me as a person, and want me to be healthy.  However,  I am an adult, and this type of criticism is not positive, and can have very negative effects on my self-esteem.

I am a lot tougher than I look.  Even if you find me bawling in a quiet place, it is not always because I am sad, it might be because I am SO ANGRY that I sprung a leak.  It is a self-defense mechanism that I have had for most of my life, and I hate it.  It is the quiet, private way to vent.

Other times I would eat my feelings.  I would go buy junk food and regular cola and binge eat.  How dare someone point at what I am eating when they are eating something just as unhealthy, or worse than what I am eating.  They eat whatever they want, well so will I.  The problem with that, other than me gaining weight, is that really I am only hurting myself.  That other person doesn’t even know that they did something wrong.  THEY THINK THEY ARE HELPING ME.  They mean well, but if I am having a sugar low, I might actually NEED that candy I am crunching as fast as I can because my sugars are dropping.  It can happen quite suddenly, and I now have juice boxes and suckers with me all of the time.  I don’t use them unless I need them.

Maybe I have made plans to take extra insulin because I wanted a treat.  I want to be normal, and eat like other people do.  I am not, and that is why I am trying SO HARD to change. I have learned that if I give in a little when I have a craving, I won’t be as likely to binge eat as I would if I suppress it.  So I do have things that are not on the diabetic diet.   I am human.  It is more convenient to grab something quick sometimes.  I am working on that, just like I am working on me.  Most of the time I make healthy choices.  So when you see me eating something that isn’t one of those choices, let me be.  I know the consequences of my actions, and I will recover to my sensibilities when I am ready.

Just like no person is the same as any other person, no person with diabetes is the same as every other person with diabetes, and no person has the exact same issues with weight that every other person has.  That is why it is important for me to write about how I feel, and to share the stories of other people and their issues with weight.  We all are experiencing life as a journey, but we still forge our own paths as individuals.

What have you cooked in your Turkey Roaster?

 

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Where’s the Beef?

 

I just put this massive Beef Stew in the oven.  The beef is on the bottom.  Then I cut up cabbage, turnip, carrots, onion, mushrooms, and radishes.  You read that right.  There are radishes in my beef stew.  It is a new thing for us, and as I am on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) plan, I have tried this once before, and I liked it.  The husband did not like the radishes as much as I did.  Last time he said,  “Fewer radishes and more potatoes.”  There are no potatoes this time.  That’ll teach him.  Just kidding.  He bought a bag of potatoes, and he will have mashed potatoes on the side.  I can bake a sweet potato if I want a potato.

I added a carton of beef broth.  I was thinking about adding some red wine for flavour but decided to save it for Thursday.  TGIT and I have plans that involve wine and popcorn.  It’s our thing.  So I  added a carton of mushroom stock instead of wine.  Then I hit the spices.  Some bay leaves, garlic, onion powder, dill, parsley, and a little Montreal Steak Spice for that little something unexpected.

I have made homemade baked beans in this roasting pan.  They cook all day.  I have made turkey in it, of course.  I have made a ham in it;  and boiled dinner which is a ham with vegetables, like the stew above.  I usually don’t add mushrooms to that one.  Or spices, the salt from the ham is amazing with those veggies.

If you have lasagna lovers in your life, you can make a many layered lasagna in one of those roasters.  It is absolutely amazing, especially if you have the right flavour combination.  I have been hit or miss with regular lasagna lately.  Or as I call it now, his lasagna.  With noodles.  I make the THM Lazy Lasagna for myself when I want a lasagna.

THM Lazy Lasagna Recipe

I have also made Bangin Ranch Drums in this roasting pan.  I eat them with sweet potatoes and green bean fries.  I add nutritional yeast flakes instead of onion or garlic powder, when I make the green bean fries.  I finally like frozen green beans, but only if they are cooked this way! 😉

 

THM Green Bean Fries Recipe

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Bangin Ranch Drums THM

 

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The cooked stew

I hope it tastes good, or I’m going to have to go off plan and top it with ketchup!

Update: The stew was really tasty.  My husband told me it was better than the last time, even though he was dubious about how it smelled.  He said the radishes weren’t even so bad this time.  I ate the stew by itself for my lunch today and paired it with baked sweet potato for supper.  He made his own regular boiled potatoes to go with his supper.  Ketchup was not necessary, but a pinch of sea salt and a light sprinkle of pepper would be the only change I would make next time.

Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 4

trust-your-gut

Trust Your Gut is a series of stories about real people with weight issues, and complications arising from those issues.  It will explain what the person is facing, what their options are, what they have decided to do to take action, and why they chose the path they are on.  Each person’s story will be based on truth, so it won’t all be happy, but it will be real.  The goal of this series is to get people talking about options that are available for people who have weight issues, on either end of the scale.  If you would like to contribute to this series, there is a contact form linked on my Home page for this blog.  I know there are people out there that want to help people like them; as I do.

The names here may or may not reflect the person’s real name.  If someone wants to remain unknown, we will choose a different name for that person’s story.  The goal is to help people, and anonymity is a valid personal choice for contributors.  I will use a person’s name only if they give permission to do so.

Here is the next addition to my own story, Trust Your Gut: Tish’s Story; Part 4

What do you do when the scale doesn’t move the right way, or it refuses to move at all?  Do you yell at it, or kick it?  Do you get a weapon of mass destruction?  (See what I did there)? Do you hide it in the closet, or throw it into the garbage?  What do you do?  I mutter under my breath.  And I think about what I have eaten in the last 24 hours.  I wonder if I should go to the bathroom and try again, to see if it gets better.  Not always.  I have tried this, and it is a gamble.  Sometimes it is worse the second time around.

A bathroom scale can be your best friend, your worst enemy or your most destructive obsession.  We have all been there, those of us with weight issues.  Watching it go in the right direction, up or down. Feeling ecstatic when it moves the right way and devastated when it doesn’t.

If you are on the high end of that scale, like me,  waiting for the number to drop, it can be very discouraging to eat healthily, have no cheats, exercise, drink your water, and not lose weight.  Or GAIN weight.  Fluid in your body does fluctuate so that accounts for the small changes seen on the scale if you climb on it every day.  In the morning, after you use the bathroom, buck naked. Right?  Don’t you do the same thing?  Isn’t that when we weigh the least, so it should show the best result?  Before climbing in the shower, because someone said you retain fluid when you are in the shower.  Wait, what?  Really?  Time to google that. The answers are conflicting, that can’t be true.  So what gives?  Why does this thing called a plateau plague each and every person trying to lose weight?

It can be muscle.  When you are building muscle, the mass of muscle is heavier.  What that means is that less muscle mass is needed to weigh the same amount as fat.  Think of it in terms of a beach ball, and a medicine ball.  The beach ball bounces and will ride on the wind.  It would take many more beach balls on the scale to weigh five pounds, as compared to the same five pounds in one medicine ball.  A pound equals a pound, but the density of the material used to make up that pound can vary in volume, because of that density.

Now think about moving around with the five pounds of balls attached to you.  It is a lot easier to move with the medicine ball, even though it requires more effort to do so.  Huh? Volume strikes again.  It is the same five pounds, but the difference is like walking around with a cat in your arms versus trying to walk around in a puffy marshmallow suit.The cat may be heavy in your arms, and you feel a little pressure, but it is easier to move from sitting to standing and walking around while holding a cat.  If you were alternatively covered in a suit of marshmallows, it would be sticky and puffy and it would be much harder to move around.

While we all try to decide if that analogy makes any sense, I’ll bounce the ball over to the how.  When you have large amounts of fat, your body has to work very hard to burn off the fat.  Think of it like cleaning the marshmallow suit off.  You would have to scrub at it and wash it off and wash your clothes and spend a lot of energy to remove the residue.  That is a lot of work and can seem for a long time like it is not worth all that effort.  But if your five pounds is a cat, you put the cat down and walk away.  You lose the extra weight more quickly.  Your muscles burn off energy much more efficiently than fat does. If you are familiar with cats, they don’t always act the way you expect them to.  They don’t always want to be picked up or put down.  And they leave little bits of fur everywhere.  If you think of the little tufts of fur as how you build muscle, you will understand that the muscle fibres get stronger as they build and grow, similar to the ball of fur you take off your clothing with a lint brush.  It adds up, a little at a time.  It takes more work to gather it all together.  Sometimes it will surprise you how much cat fur there is when you take the time to gather it all up.

Weighing yourself can become an obsession, and it can be stressful to weigh in too frequently.  When I find myself starting to be anxious about what the scale is going to show me, I know I need a break.  If it isn’t moving, and I am working hard to make changes, I have to remember that I sometimes will show gains on the scale.  It isn’t always bad.  If the weight gain is from building muscle, it means I am on the way to another drop because more muscle burns through more fat faster.  It is a good thing when it is happening for the right reason.

Back to my quick online research.  I saw that you can gain wait in a shower.  I saw that you can lose weight in a shower, and it is not because of urinating while in the shower.  People actually wrote that.  I did find out that if you have wet hair, especially if it is wrapped in a towel, you will weigh more after the shower if you step on the scale and forget the towel is in your hair.  So I am going to keep to my routine, and leave the shower out of the equation.  It seems to be the most reliable method for me.

One final thought.  I would never recommend walking around in a sticky, puffy marshmallow suit while carrying a cat.  Don’t try this at home.  Ever.  The results would be traumatic for you both.