Diet Experiment-Day 4

Still have plenty of energy on Day four of 1,000 calories a day. I had a sandwich for lunch and a banana for a snack. I ate Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower for dinner then berries with whipped cream for dessert. I was able to workout on the exercise bike today- increasing resistance every three minutes for 30, then decreasing every minute until I was back down to resistance of one for a total of 40 minutes.

I’m glad tomorrow is the last day because this is a pretty restrictive diet and I really just want to have a big meal. I’ve been eating a lot more vegetables which is awesome for several reasons: more fiber, more energy, and less hungry overall. This week I’ve had many temptations, but I’ve stayed on point with my goal. I’ve noticed that I’ve been less tired and in a better mood. Could be a number of reasons for that. There are so many moving parts when it comes to health, nutrition, mood, etc. My gastrointestinal issues are been SO much better. I don’t feel the pain and uneasiness like I normally do. I may have to adopt this diet in small stretches to alleviate some of my digestive issues in the future. It will take several trials to see if this actually helps me feel better or if it is a coincidence. Only time will tell! 🤞🏼

Quick note: This is not medical advice, just a personal experiment log. Thanks for reading!

Diet Experiment- Day 3

This morning I was a bit tired, but I didn’t sleep too well last night. A couple hours after I woke up, the grogginess dissipated and I was fine the rest of the day. I could have gotten a workout in this evening if I was able to, but doctor’s orders!

I fasted until lunch today, but started getting hungry around 11 (ate at 12). I had a salad for lunch then some carrots and a pickle for a snack. Squash with a black bean burger was for dinner. Normally I would use mayo, but since I’m counting calories, it’s not worth 100 of my precious 1,000. I used mustard instead since there aren’t calories. I had a hot earl grey tea with a splash of almond milk for “dessert”. I also had a mini rice cereal treat at work. It was good but not sure it was worth the 45 calories. It’s amazing how quickly you can decide if a food is worth it or not when you count calories.

I was so tempted to cheat today because I came home to freshly baked peanut butter cookies! Why this week?! You better believe I put away a few to have on Saturday! That being said, I’ve decided to just do the experiment for 5 days so Friday will be the last day.

Tomorrow and Friday I will resume working out. Still drinking a gallon of water per day. It’s actually not been that difficult. I find myself liking the challenge although looking everything up can be tedious. I’ve learned that many veggies have very few calories so you can almost eat all day if you like veggies!

My digestion seems better and I have less of an uncomfortable feeling after I eat. I try to eat a lot of fiber normally, but since I’ve been eating even more veggies, that could be part of it. I can’t wait to see if I feel up to a workout tomorrow (day 4). I suspect I will start to lose energy soon. I work in an office so I don’t do a ton of physical labor, but your body needs calories to just function properly. We will see what happens by Friday!

Quick note: This is not medical advice. Simply a personal experiment log. Thanks for reading!

Diet experiment- Day 2

Today I had more energy and wasn’t even hungry by lunchtime. I brought a sandwich for lunch, but didn’t end up eating it until 3:30 which made for an 18 hour fast. I didn’t intend to do that, but I know that once I start eating I feel more hungry. Maybe it was my subconscious trying to help me to not be hungry all day?

I felt energized, no brain fog or grogginess in the afternoon. I had the sandwich for a late lunch then chili for dinner. I ended with a small bowl (1 cup) of frozen berries with a little whipped cream and came in just around 900 calories. Measuring everything out is a bit of a hassle so good thing this is short term!

Thinking about my meals tomorrow, I’m going to opt for things that will be lower calories but more filling. Maybe some carrots? Another sandwich? Believe it or not, a homemade sandwich isn’t too high in calories, as long as you use little to no mayo (mustard has zero calories 😄).

As far as exercise, I had an appointment today and the doctor I saw told me no exercise for two days, but as long as after that I workout consistently for the remaining days of the experiment I will average the same amount of workout days per total days. I still haven’t decided if I am going to do this for 5 or 7 days. I’ll see how I feel by day 5.

Quick note: I am not a medical professional and I am not giving medical advice. This is simply a personal experiment where I am logging my experience. Thanks for reading!

Diet Experiment- Day 1

Food is so central to my everyday life because of my digestive disease. I’m always trying to figure out the “best” diet or times to eat. I’ve tried intermittent fasting, fasting for several days ( when I’m having a flare), eating a lot of fiber, eating less fiber, eating more raw foods, eating well cooked foods…and the list goes on. I find I feel best when I’m just not eating, but that’s not sustainable. I’ve decided to try some experimentation with different things and log it here: an online journal if you will. 🙂

Yesterday we went to a birthday party for my nephew and we ate quite a bit!! It was delicious and fine to do once in a while, but today I started a new experiment: eating 1,000 calories a day.

I try to listen to my body’s cues and eat when I’m hungry which is close to lunchtime. I probably don’t eat much more than 2,000 calories a day most days, so I don’t think it will be that difficult. About three weeks ago, I started drinking one gallon of water per day and have been successful! I workout on a stationary bike at least 4-5 days a week for at minimum 30 minutes. This is my starting point.

Today I hovered around 1,000 calories. It wasn’t difficult at all. Instead of the bike, I used an app for HIIT workouts (25 min). I know I should only change one thing at a time in an experiment, but I feel it’s close to the same cardio and I can always retry the experiment again only changing diet. I typically switch up my workouts between barre, HIIT, and bike anyway although I’ve only done bike for the last three weeks.

What’s the point of this? I just love to try new things and see what happens. I hope one day I can find an awesome strategy the can really make me feel good long-term. I’ll post an update tomorrow on hunger, energy levels, and anything else I notice. As always, thanks for reading!

Looking for Fulfillment

When I was little, I saw older people as wise, having all the answers to life’s questions and problems. The older I get, the more I realize that most people don’t have the answers. Does anyone have it figured out?

I thought by this time in my life I would be “farther ahead” , whatever that means. Sometimes I feel as though I’m on a hamster wheel, going nowhere. I’m not sure what I expected my life to be by this point. I never was that kid in middle or high school who knew exactly what they wanted to be when they grew up. I still don’t know. I changed majors more times than I care to admit. I happy enough in my career, but why do I always yearn for more? Is it ambition? Do I have unrealistic expectations? I just feel unfulfilled.

I have so many ideas and so many things I’d like to accomplish in life. I want to make a difference. I want my life to mean something. I recently sponsored a child from another country and while it’s given me a great sense of meaningfulness and generosity, I still feel a pull to do more.

Sometimes I wish we had more than one path we could take in life. It’s hard to fit it all into one lifetime. I’ve had many different jobs and experiences, which in a certain way I am grateful for, but in another, I wish I could just choose something and be happy. I always feel like I’m looking for more. Things are just temporarily satisfactory. It’s not material possessions, it’s more so to have a lifestyle in which I feel fulfilled. I want to have more time with family and my husband, more time to explore, more time outdoors, more time to rest. We all wish for things outside of our reach – that’s pretty normal. I just want to figure out how to be at peace with my life – enjoy the present and the journey to the future, not so focused on the future that I miss out on being happy in the the present.

For now, I’ll get back into meditation and writing in my gratitude journal. I’ll start here: Today I am grateful for the ability to take a walk after dinner in January with no more than a light sweater.

What are you grateful for?

Time

Days, weeks, and years seem to just fly by. This month is my husband’s and my tenth wedding anniversary! TEN! It’s flown by but at the same time, I feel like we’ve always been married. How is that possible?

We’ve been through so much in the last 13 years between college, career changes, raising a small human, and the list goes on. An unexpected challenge I was handed in this life is chronic illness. I’m so very grateful to have been feeling pretty well the last 6 months or so, but it’s always around this time of year that I’m reminded just how much my husband has been there for me through my battle with this disease. We were only married for about 10 months when I was diagnosed. We had no idea how it would change our lives.

I’ve gotten really ill a few times and every single time he’s stepped up to the plate and taken over my duties as well as continued his own. When I was too ill to get out of bed for weeks, he worked, took care of our daughter, cooked, cleaned, washed laundry, took care of the pets, and still was able to take care of me. I will never forget the unconditional love he has shown me over the years. He’s so patient when we have plans but I’m not feeling well enough to follow through. He’s never been upset that we were late because of my anxiety (which unfortunately, is common with this disease). He has stood by the vows we took almost ten years ago, not knowing just how much “in sickness and in health” would mean to our marriage.

I’ve been trying to decide what kind of meaningful gift I want to give him for our anniversary, and finally decided! I’ll spill the beans after I’ve given it to him. We have done a couple fun things this month and we have dinner plans on our anniversary. This one kinda snuck up on us. A few years ago we wanted to do something big for year ten – a trip maybe. This year we will just enjoy each other’s company and reminisce about our relationship. We have the rest of our lives to take a trip. ❤️

Joker

Just to be clear, there will be no spoilers in this post!

Last night we saw Joker which I was really looking forward to seeing. I’m not much of a movie person, but this one caught my eye. I’m a sucker for tragic, dark movies and this was just good as I was hoping.

After seeing it, I can understand the controversy surrounding this movie. The theater we visited had signs up prohibiting masks, face makeup, and costumes. Just seeing that sign made me uneasy, although I’m not sure that was the intention. This movie was dark, violent, and not one part of it made you feel good. It was tragic.

Joaquin Phoenix was phenomenal. The character development was impressive. The music has a way of provoking empathy, although it felt wrong to feel bad for him. The story had some unexpected turns and I felt it really highlighted Arthur’s mental illness.

I don’t agree with banning the movie’s release. I think mental illness paired with violence scares people but it’s important to show mental illness in such a raw, real way. Many, many people live with different forms of mental illness and there should be more awareness. Sometimes awareness comes through entertainment. People are afraid of what they don’t know and the more people are exposed to the different forms of mental illness, the better prepared we can be as a society to help those suffering – even if that exposure comes as a fictional but familiar character.

I loved it.

Hurricane Dorian

The biggest thing in the news as of late for Floridians is Hurricane Dorian. It is a very stressful time, even if you have lived here for years and have experienced many hurricanes. You know it’s coming but aren’t sure exactly when or even where it will make landfall. I saw a meme today that said waiting for a hurricane was like being stalked by a turtle… I giggled. It’s kinda true.

We are as prepared as we can be at this point. We have drinks, we have food, and we will freeze some filtered water in case we lose power which is to be expected. We know the drill. Everyone seems to be preparing a bit early this time with water selling out 5 days before the storm is supposed to hit. I assume stores will be getting at least one more delivery before we all hunker down. That being said, I think it’s a bit funny that everyone jumps on the water bandwagon. Do that many people even drink water on a regular basis? People seem to forget that you can also buy juice and sports drinks among other bottled drinks. Of course everyone should have water, but some people buy way more than they need which leaves the rest of us with very little or none. Maybe the newscasters should throw that idea out there.

Tomorrow we plan on preparing the house, cleaning up the yard, putting the chairs, hammock, and other things that can fly away with strong winds in the garage. We are also going to make some beef jerky! We started using our dehydrator again and realized that beef jerky is a great snack that won’t have to be refrigerated if we lose power. Last time we were without power for 5 days. It was rough, but we survived! The worst thing about being without electricity is trying to sleep at night – especially since I still had to go to work during the day.

At this point, all we can do is wait. It’s anxiety inducing, but I try to track the storm every few hours and not watch too much coverage on it because it can become overwhelming. We are planning to stay home and ride it out unless we are told to evacuate in which case we have a full tank of gas so we will be okay. I hope anyone who is in the path of Dorian heeds advice to be prepared with supplies and evacuate if necessary. Stay safe, friends.

Disrespect

I have a good working relationship with everyone at my current place of employment, working with several contractors, customers, and engineers. I am one of the only women which was uncomfortable for me at first. Not all men are inherently bad, but when you work in a male dominated industry, it can be a bit intimidating at times.

There’s one contractor in particular that is very nice and respectful – to my face, but not behind my back apparently. I received a text that wasn’t meant for me accidentally, but it was about me and I was referred to as an offensive term in Spanish.

When I received the text I was to meet with him in about an hour and I knew he figured out he had sent it to me and not his boss. I was nervous about the meeting but he acted no different. I haven’t said anything as of the time I’m writing this article. I want to say something but I don’t know how to word it. I want to tell my boss (who isn’t his boss) or his boss. I’m starting to think maybe this is how he and his boss talk about me when I’m not around.

It really upset me because I’ve been nothing but nice and accommodating, going out of my way to make things easier for them. I will not apologize for my sensitivity and I shouldn’t have to. Many people may say I need to ” toughen up” especially since I work with mostly men. No! It shouldn’t be up to me to not be so sensitive. People just need to respect one another. Maybe I shouldn’t work in a male dominated industry. I’m not the type to stand up for myself and that can be a problem when things like this happen.

I still haven’t decided how I’m going to handle this. My boss is on vacation until next week (of course). I want to just tell the guy that what he said is an inappropriate way to talk about me. What I’m struggling with is the fact that the text wasn’t meant for me to see. I just don’t know what to do. Any suggestions??