Grainy Day

Today’s Happy Note: Sleeping in!  I don’t work until 10 some mornings.  I passed out at eleven last night and woke up at nine this morning.  I felt wonderful!

Today was just one of those days where I wasn’t happy, wasn’t sad, wasn’t angry or excited or anxious.  It’s not that I didn’t feel anything, it was all just sort of murky.  Hard to describe.  Not really like I was in a funk but just sort of…cloudy?  Not gloomy though.   I am generally a very emotionally sensitive person and I feel things very deeply; this was almost a welcome break.  I wasn’t depressed or moody at all.  I guess the day just sort of glided by and now that it’s over I can’t quite characterize it — like it was a grainy photograph.

I spent two hours with friends this evening doing stuff for work.  I had a really wonderful moment somewhere in there where I forgot about all my problems.  I love how friends can do that.  I realized that I wasn’t thinking about food or money or sadness.  I wasn’t berating myself over my size.  I was just me.  I love how being with people I care about sometimes solves all my problems.

Friends and loved ones, of course, cannot fix everything.  Sometimes there is a deeper sadness.  But, as L has helped me figure out, it is possible to survive the sadder times.  I will survive.

A few weeks ago I was having a particularly anxious day at therapy and L asked me what helps me calm down.  Running, reading quietly, taking a nap, and just sitting with someone I love who cares about me.  That last one really is a big thing, and I am coming to see more and more lately how healthy relationships affect me.  When I told her my list, she said simply, “I care about you.”

It was one of the nicest things someone has said to me in a long while. Reason number 14224 why I love her.

Do I add nut butter to everything I eat?  No.  Just most things.

Confession: I just realized that part of the reason my dinners never fill me up is that I am afraid to have it in more than one plate or bowl.  Which means there is usually only one thing involved, and that is never enough!  Tonight I had a big bowl of oats with peaches and dark chocolate and a small bowl of yogurt with coconut and a sprinkling of trail mix.  It did the trick.

I have been loving me some grains lately — literally craving them, which is pretty unusual for me.  I tend to fear excess carbs, but let’s face it: no one ever died because they were eating too much oats and brown rice and millet.

Today was a rest day.  Normally I do weights and kickboxing on Mondays, but between a long run yesterday and speed work tomorrow, I wanted something a bit calmer.  I did a little over three miles walking and 20 minutes of yoga and abs.  I don’t like waking up super early to run and would prefer to do it around three or four, ideally, but it is going to be hot hot hot tomorrow so I know I have to get out by seven.  Uh-oh, that means it’s past my bedtime now!

Goodnight, sleep tight.

Oh, and hello new readers!  Don’ be afraid to say hello. 🙂

A Thing About Cravings.

Today’s Happy Note: Well, you might say that I am msot definitely caught up on my sleep….

I went to bed at eleven last night, planning to get up at 7:45 for a run and be at work by 10.  When my alarm went off, I decided to sleep in until 8:30…okay, no problem, I would still get to work on time.  8:45 rolled around and I dragged myself into the kitchen for a pretty awesome smoothie (Silk vanilla soy milk, 1/2 scoop chocolate/peanut/caramel protein powder,loads of ice, and half a banana.  All topped with Kashi heart to heart and some crunchy PB).

And then I went to my room to check email and promptly feel back asleep…until 2:00.

I have not done that since high school!  I would wake up every hour or two and think, okay, it’s time to get up now, but it was like I was in a stupor.  It was the deepest exhaustion I have felt in a long while.  So I basically slept for 15 hours.  I know I am still “sick” on the inside, so I guess it kind of makes sense, given that I have been doing a lot in the last week or so.

I made lunch when I woke up and did work on the computer (for the other job) for a few hours.

I had a mild freakout at lunchtime, when I realized that all I wanted was oats.  Carbs?  At lunchtime?  Never!!!!!!  But.  I wanted the damn oatmeal, with a fresh peach, cinnamon raisin PB, and melty dark chocolate.  This lunch proved to me how important it is to eat what I want: my body knows what it needs.  Oatmeal at lunchtime is not going to make me fat. I know this.

I might lose the weight a little bit faster if I ate salads for every meal, but I can guarantee that I would be a pretty miserable human being. 🙂

Lunch dessert (what, you don’t have lunch dessert?!?!):

Coconut popsicle and baby dark chocolate truffle.  This was eaten so late, I never had an afternoon snack.

I finally left the house around four.  At first, my brain went in to extreme mode and thought “geez Caronae, you have already been so lazy and immobile and gluttonous (that one’s not even true!) today that you should just stay in.  Just make yourself more miserable, you don’t deserve to go out for a walk or get to the gym.”  This is utterly ridiculous.  Does anyone else do this?  I hate my all or nothing mindset.

But I got out anyways!  I walked to the gym and lifted for about 45 minutes, then took a class called Sports Conditioning.  It was really fun and a great workout!  Not quite as good as my beloved kixkboxing, but still awesome.  We did lots  of cardio/strength mixtures, with jumping, abs, and running thrown in.

I was happy that I got out of the house (apartment) and did something.  No effort to move is ever too small.

I did some house tasks before dinner.  We started here…

And ended here:

Yes, that is the biggest pile of sauteed rainbow chard (and spinach!) man has ever seen.  I ate about half of what I cooked.  It was pretty spectacular.  Topped with two sunny-side up eggs (I love love love runny yolks) and bell pepper strips.  With a peach on the side!

This dinner was pure love.  I was craving some fresh veg and protein.  The chard and the eggs were from the farmer’s market.  Can’t wait to go restock my veggies (and chocolate milk of course) tomorrow!

Funny thing about dark leafy greens: as we all know, our greens are good for us.  They are rich in Vitamin K and I actually really enjoy them; cooked, raw, in omelets, stir-fries, smoothies, salads, wraps.  But.  Vitamin K interferes with the coagulation coefficient of the blood thinners I have to take (namely, the Coumadin).  In the past, Coumadin patients were advised to totally avoid greens and other veggies rich in Vitamin K.  But then, people like me, for whom that would not be possible, came around.  Okay, so maybe it’s not that simple, but you get the point.

The solution?  I can either eat no dark leafy greens at all or eat lots.  I chose the latter. 🙂  That way, it will still interfere with the drug, but they can simply give me a higher dose consistently.  My dosage is still creeping up; we’ll see how high I have to go.  I am not giving up my chard, bok choy, spinach, collards, arugula, etc.  Never!

I made a giant batch of iced tea and have already had two huge classes.  I use chamomile tea bags, a packet of stevia, and a few teaspoons of honey.  Summer perfection.

Dessert was of course consumed:

Raspberry chobani with Godiva raspberry dark chocolate and a tablespoon of Justin’s chocolate almond butter.  There are no words.  This was like a decadent ice cream sundae.  I’m in love.

Another thing I have learned about cravings: if I don’t eat what I want for dessert, I will end up overeating/emotional eating afterwards.  So I ate this “big dessert”, but now I know I won’t be raiding the cupboard in an hour or two!  So simple.

I hope everyone is having a most wonderful week.

Here’s to hoping that my 15 hours of sleep last night means I am wide awake tomorrow!

Goodnight!

I Like Hitting Things.

Today’s Happy Note: Not hating my body at the gym! For some reason I felt strong and confident and I appreciated my height and my small waist.  There was no body-hating going on at all.  Score!

I took the afternoon off from the office job.  I had a boatload of important errands to do (such as going on a quest in search of the new Larabar flavors), computer work to do for the other job, a conference call, and a kick boxing class to get  to!  You can read about how the first  class basically changed my life here.  I missed last week since I had just gotten out of the hospital, but I was determined to make it today (although I was quite close to taking a nap instead).  So glad I did.

Apparently I just really love punching things?  It’s a good mix of cardio and strength and plyometrics and abs and just all kinds of different moves.  I did about a half an hour of weights beforehand.  I’m starting to feel like myself again!

Bad news though: my stupid stupid INR is still nowhere near high enough.  Sad face.  This means I have to keep doing the Lovenox injections.  Fun.  And increasing the Coumadin very very slowly (so that I don’t bleed to death).  This probably doesn’t make a lot of sense to most of you, but that’s okay.  My point here is not intellectual clarity.  It’s more that I’m rambling-venting.  To myself.  On my public blog.

I make so much sense.

Food I ate today:

Breakfast: TJ’s flax oatmeal made with half vanilla soymilk and half water, a precious farmer’s market peach, and a tablespoon of Justin’s (amazing) maple almond butter.

Birds’ eye view of lunch.

Giant salad with mixed lettuces, yellow squash with EVOO, avocado, and coconut maple tofu.  With a side of pear.

Afternoon snack involved a new protein powder find!  Designer whey chocolate carmel peanut.  I know there are artificial flavors involved, but it’s so good I don’t care.  I blended it with chocolate milk and ice and topped it with chocolate almond butter.  Mmmmmmmmm.

This kept me full for like five hours, which never happens!

Dinner was pretty swell.

A giant pile of baked plain eggplant, microwave steamed zucchini, meatballs, topped with smooth marinara, cheese, and dried basil.  All heated up so it was nice and hot and the cheese was melty, just how I like it.

Followed that up with avocado chocolate pudding!  Topped with coconut snow and two squares of Godiva raspberry dark chocolate.  This dessert was heaven.  On a baby spoon.

Perfect.

I have three doctors appointments tomorrow morning.  I have to leave at 8:30 or so and probably won’t get back until 9:00 PM.  Yikes!  Time to pack everything and prep lunch and snacks. 🙂

Goodnight my friends, sleep tight.

Adventure Saturday: Ocean, Body Image/Weight Concerns

Today’s Happy Note: Vitamin D overload.  Sunshine! 🙂

I ended up walking 5 or so miles yesterday; I also did a 20 minute yoga core download.  Today I did 3-4 miles walking, 2 miles running (on the beach!!!) and lots of playing in the water.

I had an awesome beach trip.  I always forget that Manhattan is so close to the ocean.  Twas lovely!

Confession: I felt so unbelievably, ridiculously fat in my swimsuit.  I wanted to hide in the changing rooms and cry.  I told my dad that I should not be allowed on the beach without a sign that said “whale.”

And then I hate myself for hating myself so much.  Oh, the irony.

The reality is that, between the GI illness and the hospitalization, I have gained about ten pounds.  I am not someone who could afford to gain ten pounds.  I’m pretty sure this makes me borderline overweight.   I don’t care so much about that label as feeling good and feeling confident.  I don’t feel either right now.  I feel enormous.

I am not necessarily mad at myself: I have hardly been able to workout in the last month, and I have been quite stressed.   I respond to stress by eating emotionally and gaining weight easily.  Seriously, I probably even gained weight when I had my GI thing and all I could eat for three or four days was the occasional piece of toast.

I played on the beach today for hours and ended up having a lot of fun; I dug my toes into the sand, ran up and down, jumped over the waves, swam through the waves, and bothered my sister (endlessly entertaining).  So I am not entirely focused on my body, but it is still there.  It’s this painful, nagging thing in the background.  It’s like something isn’t quite right, and my body knows this, physically and mentally.

The thing that works best for me is not obsessing, but not being lax either.  Counting calories, tracking meals, only “allowing” certain food: none of this works for me. This all creates more tension and anxiety and makes me more sad and I feel worse about my body and I end up eating more.  Funny how that cycle works.  But at least I can recognize it.  In fact, I think I do know what works: eating three wholesome meals a day (plus an afternoon snack and a small dessert), with lots of healthy fats, protein, and veggies, and not snacking in the evening.  It’s as simple as that.

Pretty straightforward.  That’s my plan.  I do intend to use the blog to keep myself accountable. Accountability is where I have failed in the past.  So I intend to do a tiny little check-in with myself when I post, mostly to note whether or not I have been mindlessly eating in the evenings.

Once in a while, I might share a full day of eats.  Like today, since I figured it would be a good idea to have a baseline image of how much I need in a day on an active day where I don’t overeat.

I am sorry if this upsets anyone: if you feel like this would not be a good idea for you to read about, PLEASE skip over it.  I would not want to hurt anyone, especially if you have a history of ED/disordered eating.

Breakfast was flax oatmeal (TJ’s brand) with part of a peach (would have used it all but parts were squishy and I hate that) and a giant scoop of AB.  One of my favorite breakfasts!

Lunch=giant salad with cucumbers, zuchinni, carrots, microwaved eggs, and avocado.

Afternoon snack — it was super melty since it had been at the beach with me all day and it was a hundred degrees!

A few bites of coleslaw and a giant Asian chicken salad for dinner (the size of my head).  You can’t see the chicken and other toppings, but I promise they’re there!

On the left is a peanut butter cup shake I had before going to a play with my dad and sister.  Right was my before blogging/bed snack of a small Godiva truffle.  I REFUSE to go without dessert.  Ever. Regardless of my weight.  I’m sure this is some kind of dieting sin.  But I don’t care.

So there you have it.  I do want to lost a bit of weight.  It’s very hard for me to find a balance between vigilance and obsession; I am aiming to use the blog to help me find a balance over the next few months (that won’t be the only thing on the blog though, don’t worry!).   Due to my body’s natural  (and rather unfortunate) chemistry/metabolism, I do need to have a certain vigilance.  It sounds bizarre, but if I am not careful and I gain weight now, I could screw over my fertility in the future.  Very random, I know.  But I want to be a mother more than anything in the world and so I am not going to take any chances with this.

Any thoughts?