Tag Archives: stress

…stress…and sleep….and life.

17 Apr

Have you ever had financial struggles? Or are my husband and I the only ones?

I gotta say, eating healthfully on a budget can be difficult. I look forward to the day when I can post about all my AMAZING tips on ‘How to Eat REAL on a tight budget’. The real downfall for me is, I live in the Golden Heart of Alaska…North Pole, Alaska…12 miles from Downtown Fairbanks, Alaska. Well, as you can imagine, it’s still COLD here…and will be for QUIET a bit longer. I don’t have an established garden. I don’t have a greenhouse  I don’t have a lot of space in my home. And as you can guess living in Alaska, food costs are HIGH for produce and such.

So, here I am, working to make my lifestyle change SUCCESSFUL. Sometimes, it can be stressful. Not EATING or buying, but affording. I long for a growing period longer than Alaska’s 90 days. I dream of Roseburg, Oregon’s typical growing season of 280 days….um…hello! Can you say, HEAVENLY!?

Anyhow…the stress of catching up on winters bills…and LIVING this whole healthy way with Alaska’s unique challenges was really taking it’s toll on me. I’ve not been a very good financial manager of our home. I don’t understand why, because I am a very bright woman and love details and love managing stuff…so then why the struggle with our personal money? Oh, why? Hmmmm…I’ll figure it out, sooner or later. Hopefully SOONER than later. 😉

The stress, added to the penny pinching in my pantry, left me with fewer options for healthful food. And I refused to eat ‘old school’. Then it just overwhelmed me, and the stress built up (I am very good at chiding myself for my shortcomings in the financial areas of our livelihood.) and I started craving crazy stuff. Stuff I haven’t craved or wanted or thought of in the previous 49 days. So, rather than beating myself up for ‘wanting’ carbs/sugar/etc…I CHOSE ‘serving’ sizes of particular things. I have two cups of coffee, with processed white sugar and half and half, (a total of 8 teaspoons of sugar, I like(d) my coffee sweet, hence the GETTING OFF coffee and switching to Green Tea without sweetener), and a serving size of Rocky Road Ice Cream (1/2 cup) and later in the day, I had 1 oz. of sharp cheddar cheese.

Well, let me just point out, EVERY SINGLE item I chose, even though it was small servings, etc, when you look at them, they are ALL the PERFECT recipe for a MIGRAINE! YAY ME!

STRESS

SLEEP ISSUES

SUGAR

CHOCOLATE

and drumroll…..

CHEESE

====

I was actually dressing in the locker room at Planet Fitness, soooo wanting to get a good work out in…and I started having my visual disturbances in my left eye, flashing lights and impaired sight…ugh…sad face. I decided to not workout and stress my body under those conditions. By the time I came home, my ‘painless migraine’ turned not so painless…Needless to say, it was lame. 😦

Today was much better. I had a pretty bad headache, which felt more like my sleep apnea headaches. I was looking forward to my sleep testing tonight…however, sadly, both for me, but mostly for the tech, I had to reschedule. The tech had a family emergency, and no one could cover for them. I said a prayer for the tech, and rescheduled for Saturday.

I had a nice day, after the ‘blahs’ in the morning…and spent a couple hours with a dear friend of mine…and to end it, we walked. And it was fabulous. 🙂

So, my sucky day turned out very nice. I took it easy, and ate well today. It always amazes me how our bodies know what is good for them and how the elements of stress and sleep issues cause our bodies to crave certain things. Pretty fascinating. Yep, yep.

Be blessed. 🙂

Oh, I’m going to attach a photo I took the other night, trying to get a picture of the Big Dipper…I got a bit of the Northern Lights in there. What do you think? 🙂 Northern Lights Big Dipper 4 14 2013

Ok. Let’s talk about one hot mess….ME!

30 Mar

No, I don’t mean ‘hot’ like, “Ooo la la” (as my son says to me, when he’s giving me the googly eyes, like he’s in love with me.)

More like ‘hot’, blood pressure up, heart racing ever so slightly, stress building…THAT kind of ‘hot’.

Yeah…that ever elusive ‘balance’ I speak of, and long for, OMG…why is it so difficult to attain? I know it can’t be just me.

At least I HOPE it’s not just me….

We all know, Misery loves company….LOL.

So, I just gotta say, I’m recognizing that trying to ‘hit’ a protein goal EVERY MORNING, within 30 minutes of opening my peepers….and trying to get 50-75 grams of the wonderful stuff in me that soon, is kickin’ my tush! The length of my morning meal, the monotonous chewing, the being FULL, it’s getting hard.

Then, I realized this morning, it’s causing me to STRESS!

OH MY GOODNESS! NONE OF THAT!

Ok…deep breath. STRESS is NOT something I need…in any way, whatsoever.

SO, knowing that, I have made my adjustment. It is LESS important to HIT A GOAL, than it is to be wise in my choices, and nourish myself. I WILL NOT OBSESS and I WILL NOT STRESS. NOPE, Nope, nope!

Wow, look at that…I’m already finding balance! And it’s just barely noon!

Then I realized that I was stressing over not loosing anymore weight, nor any inches since I’ve last measured and weighed. I was masking my devastation  La la la…It doesn’t bother me. (WHAT AM I DOING WRONG!?!?!?!?!) la la la…..and so on.

Oh. Wait. Didn’t I just loose 20 pounds in 30 days? WOW! RIGHT? TWENTY POUNDS! IN 30 DAYS! Give myself a break, already, RIGHT?

Ok…balance…I get it…it’s something to work towards, but not something to expect without a lot of INTENTIONAL LIVING and THINKING and ADJUSTING.

I can do this. However, I am grateful for the reminder that Scriptures give me,

 

2 Corinthians 10:5

King James Version (KJV)

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

No, this isn’t bible study, but the reminder to take every thought captive, and measure it with God’s Truth is something I want to do always.

God’s Truth about ME, who I am…to Him. THAT is what’s important.

God’s Truth about FOOD. Being created in such amazing harmony with our DESIGNED bodies….what a beautiful thing! If I remember THAT, I’m not going to obsess over ‘getting enough protein’ to meet some goal. WHY is that so hard to remember?

I’ve got such a legalistic mindset sometimes, it tries to detract from my life. Using information to make informed decisions and choices, that’s what I’m supposed to do. It’s a good thing.

Living my life freely and wisely, THAT brings Glory to my Lord, AND grants me the peace and joy to allow my body to function wholly….healthfully.

Ok…thanks for letting me remind myself.

Have a fabulous day!

Be blessed. 😉

LOL…how can it be SO TRUE, the more I learn, the more I don’t know!?

28 Mar

So, I’ve been working on that thing called balance.

“This says” don’t exercise until after 5pm. “That says” don’t even think of eating after 7pm. “The other” says don’t snack.

“Eat THIS much protein”

“DON’T eat CARBS”

Drink THIS

DON’T drink THAT

Murderer of helpless animals (seriously, I was watching a ‘Raw Food’ DVD the other day, and the woman actually said that. I thought that was just teasing people that were vegetarians/vegans, and come to find out, they think I’m a murderer!)

Oh my gosh…the list is LONG, ON TOP OF…………….”DON’T STRESS!”

Excuse my cyber expletives, but WTH!?!?!

HOW CAN SOMEONE NOT STRESS with THAT MESS!?!?

Yes…I speak of this elusive balance.

Yes, what makes me happy, peaceful, fulfilled is likely NOT going to be the exact same thing for YOU.

SO, what’s a person to do?

Here’s what I’ve really decided to do. CHILLAX! FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!

NO, not GIVE up. but relax!

As far as I’m concerned, learning about foods and their fabulous gift to us and our bodies, minds and spirits and using them as I feel we’re intended to. To heal, nourish and enjoy!

So….I came to this deep conclusion due to last nights breakdown. I have been wanting to go swimming. Our local pools Open Swim time is 7-9pm. I was running behind in town, and didn’t have time to eat BEFORE leaving, enough to fill me up for the night WITHOUT overdoing it for the pool…and we’d be swimming until 9pm….so, of course, it’s ‘against the law’ to eat after 7pm…so the STARVING feeling I ALWAYS get after swimming was killing me, just KNOWING I couldn’t even make a healthful choice and eat.

I SERIOUSLY CONTEMPLATED A McDonald’s DIPPED CONE, I KID YOU NOT!

(I haven’t had a craving like that in 30 days!)

After being rather unkind and pissy towards my precious family, already pushing myself past my regular comfort zone, GOING SWIMMING IN THE FIRST PLACE, getting my chubs into a suit and BEING THERE, but now, stressing about the predicament I had put myself in….I cried…and apologized…and decided, THIS STRESS is NOT WORTH IT…and I’m going to make MY OWN choices, without overthinking or worrying.

And I did.

AND, I worked out this morning, at 11. AM. IN THE MORNING. HA HA!

Let me tell you….the 20 minute DVD I did, working on my core and lower back, using a back ball thingy (I have a fractured L5 disc and it causes a LOT of pain if I’m not careful, making core workouts and strengthening difficult.)

I was ACTUALLY happy afterwards. The ‘high’ I got from that gentle yet effective workout was insane and INSPIRING!

So, I have just reaffirmed my quest for MY balance. And it makes me giddy.

What’s up with you…?

Hi, My name is (anonymous), and I am a PERSON.

24 Mar

Ok, so this post is about me. And, again, maybe you, too…?

I’m overweight.

By a lot. No, more than that…yeah…that…A LOT!

I have come to grips with my inner beauty. I have learned to appreciate my family and friends adoration regarding my outward beauty…(ahem)…and instead of stressing when I was getting too fluffy for my size 24 Lane Bryant jeans, I pulled out my LB credit card and order me some size 26 jeans, and was thankful.

HOWEVER…I am fat. (Don’t be offended. I can say it…lol.) I don’t LIKE being fat. But I was okay with it…until I started understanding, I’m not fat because I’m not strong enough to say ‘No’ to food, like it’s DRUGS or something…but instead, I’m fat because of SO MANY THINGS I didn’t even UNDERSTAND! And, here is MY LIST.

SLEEP APNEA

SLEEP ISSUES/INSOMNIA

STRESS (DEALING with stress, NOT suppressing OR passing over STRESS)

FOOD CRAVINGS

ENORMOUS PLATEFULS OF FOOD LATE AT NIGHT

INFLAMMATION (rosacea)

So, having done my Green Smoothie thing, and it being INSANELY effective, and then having done a lot with eating for my Blood Type, and that being effective, as well, I found myself back in my rut. Yep, that’s where I’d been, off and on for the last year. You? Where have you been?

BUSYNESS is what really happened, and not having an understanding of WHY my body ‘needs’ what it ‘needs’ or at least THINKS it NEEDS! 😉 I had parts of it right, but there was SO MUCH MORE to it.

I love my body. I TRULY DO! I think that is evident in my fervent searching for wholeness on my body’s behalf. And I’m finally learning, my body and what goes in and on and around it is one amazing relationship, and in a healthful, fulfilling relationship, two people SUPPORT each other…and I came to realize, I was NOT supporting my body in the way it needed. It was a messed up relationship.

The catalyst that really HIT HOME for me was this post by Wellness Mama. I found it on Pinterest…happy sigh. It helped me understand it’s NOT just about FOOD.

The Leptin Resistance that I was introduced to, showed me that even though I have plenty of hormones (leptin is a hormone in our fat cells (adipose tissue) that communicates with the hypothalamus to alert you that you’re satiated and full enough, so stop eating already.) to communicate, HOWEVER, the message wasn’t being RECEIVED! Oh, my…THAT’S why it’s been so hard.

Well, that sort of kicked me back into gear…and an issue I’ve been ‘ignoring’ for a while, I finally chose to address….sleep apnea.

I wake up with headaches. I wake up several times a night, and I’m completely miserable. Dry mouth from snoring, headache, and sometimes I have/had a problem going back to sleep. I was sleepy everyday. Going to bed wasn’t easy for me. I thought it was just because I’m a night owl…but really, my insomnia was contributed to by the hormonal imbalance in my body and my habits created by that, or visa versa…either way, it’s like I said in my previous post, it’s all CIRCULAR.

I went in to the clinic, to get referred to the sleep specialist, and he ran some blood work first, to be sure I didn’t have any extenuating issues, such as thyroid problems.  The blood work came back great, except an elevated red blood cell count, which is indicative of … drum roll please … SLEEP APNEA. 😉 LOL

Needless to say, for being what doctors call, MORBIDLY OBESE, I am VERY HEALTHY! ??? I know, right? Go figure. LOL Yet, I am JOYFUL over this circumstance!

That being said, after almost 4 weeks of really being devout to the Leptin Reset (and I was pretty darn amazing, if I do say so myself), I came to understand, the Leptin Reset is for people with major health issues, disease and debilitating things, like arthritis and such. So, I have since altered my customized plan. I have stayed EXTREMELY close to the recommendations. In particular, where timing  and environment are concerned.

To start with, once Wellness Mama got my desires rekindled, I adapted a plan for me that tried to include Blood Type eating, and anti-inflammatory eating as well as the recommendations in the Leptin Reset.

It was time consuming and fascinating! I’ve loved it.

I started up my myfitnesspal.com again, and started tracking my foods again. I got a fun app called Striiv on my iPhone to track my steps and motivate me to get off my butt occasionally. I was lucky and got it when it was still free, but it’s like $4.99 now. But, knowing what I know about the app, I’d totally buy it. It’s very fun and has challenges on it…and the best part, even when I ‘lose’ a challenge, I WIN! I got OFF MY BUTT! LOL Since I’ve gotten the app like, three weeks ago, I’ve tracked 64,105 steps altogether, been active 1,063 minutes, walked 29 miles, and burned 10,224 calories. Keeping in mind, I don’t carry my iPhone around with me ALL the time…there are a lot of steps and activity that don’t get counted…but HOW FUN IS THAT!?

(On that note, I am looking to get a fitbit, or a bodymedia sometime soon. Does anyone have a one of those and want to share what they think of theirs? I’d appreciate it!)

Anyhow..back to the plan.

After changing my food stuffs again, in 13 days, I had lost 13 pounds, while on my girly time, nonetheless. Which, ladies, in and of itself, is amazing…because the hormonal imbalance I was never regular…and that’s changing, as well! (Gents, sorry if that’s TMI.)

As of today, I’ve lost 17.4 pounds, 27 days in.

I did an audit of my menu for the first 26 days, and found some interesting inflammatory contributors in my foods. Oops. LOL…so, I am fixing that and altering some of my approaches, as I stated, with the less intense Leptin Reset and more balanced leaning towards anti-inflammatory foods.

I am loving it.

Here are some of the links I promised:

Watch this video first…it’s fun…and so easy to understand. 

Leptin Reset

Leptin Info

Wellness Mama on Stress/Hormones

Raw Food for The Beginner

Livestrong’s article about Leptin and Inflammation

I have several books that I use as resources:

Eat Right for Your Blood Type

Live Right for Your Blood Type

Cook Right for Your Blood Type

The Complete Idiots Guide Anti-Inflammation Cookbook

Becoming Raw 

My last note:

There are so many opinions and science to support them, but many plans and diets tend to be EXTREME or missing elements. I do NOT FULLY SUPPORT ANY of these resources as a fix-all or even good in and of itself. As far as I’m concerned, and speaking for myself, I use them as RESOURCES.

PLEASE, leave some feedback…I’d LOVE your input, as always!