Hormones really mess up my life.

Haven’t posted in a while because I was feeling crappy.  Both physically and mentally.  The good news is that despite the mental ick, I didn’t give up on the diet plan.  It was really rough, because for over a week I didn’t lose any weight at all, and actually gained back a tiny bit.  I knew it was hormones though, that I was retaining fluid, so I just didn’t weigh myself for a while.  Finally, Monday,  I lost four pounds over night.  As of this morning, I’ve lost 21 lbs.

Poor Murph is having to  put up with Mom cooking some strange stuff for dinner these days.  Last night I made roasted vegetables, black beans and brown rice.  The only consolation for him is I’ve also been making dessert; last night a peach tart.   I use phyllo for crust, just putting in fruit and spice with minimal sugar, and it has been delicious.  Feeling really ambitious last night, I also made zucchini bread; chocolate zucchini bread actually.  It’s really yummy. I found a website that has vegan only recipes, and so far the few I’ve tried have been pretty good.

We all really love the roasted veggies.  It’s so easy, and roasting them gives them such a great flavor.  I’ve even roasted beets, which my mother will be shocked to hear.  I was never much of a beet fan; but roasted they’re delicious!  I just chop up whatever veggies we have hanging around, drizzle a little olive oil and a spice or two, then cook in the oven at 350 for 40-60 minutes.  The more time I have the more attention I can pay; putting in the hard veggies first, adding the softer ones later, but it even works pretty well to just throw them all in the pan together for a really long time; I did it one night when Murphy had a baseball game.  Put them in the oven before we left for the game, but I did reduce temp to like 250, and just cooked them for the three hours we were at the game.  They were a little overdone, but still really good.

I want to make my own granola too; it’s so expensive to buy in the store, and then you end up with things in it you might not want.  The problem is getting the basic ingredients for a vegetarian kitchen; they’re expensive!  And storage is interesting; I need all these little containers for grains spices and beans we don’t  normally have on hand.  But I’m working on it, slowly.

I’m hoping that now that the period ick is over, my energy level will pick up again and my attitude will improve.  The first two weeks I was so optimistic and energized,  but then you know, life intrudes.  It’s easy to get discouraged. But I feel good making it through the first “bad patch” without giving up; so there’s hope.  And I have a lot of support from my family and friends, and that means a lot.

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Still plodding along

Ok, plodding doesn’t exactly sound positive, does it?   I am, though.  Still going strong, have now lost 14 pounds.  Doing  a lot of research, trying to figure out what I can eat, when I can eat, what things to combine…  There are a LOT of different schools of thought.  Some of them make sense, some not so much, and some just scare the pants off me.  Read an article today on aspartame that was a little terrifying.  I’d already given it up, for the most part, in an effort to be putting less chemicals into my body.  Relying instead on Stevia, honey, or even cane sugar, in moderation.

Khabir’s plan for the clients is a little strict,  for me.  Not so much the individual foods I can or can’t eat, but the where and when.  Drink water, eat fruit between meals, no liquids when you eat, take this supplement now and this one then… on and on.  It’s a little confusing and very overwhelming when there’s too much chaos in my life now anyway. I have to learn a new way of cooking, really, to be vegetarian.  Cooking foods I’m not used to, new methods, etc. Not to mention the cost of organic food and the supplements are insane!

So my current plan is this.  Ovo-Pescatarian, organic when possible.  Eat when I’m hungry, trying to make healthy choices.  No dairy, no meat, fish and maybe chicken on occasion.  No counting calories or nutrients, since I’m not sure I buy the current pyramid thinking.  Bought a juicer; try to drink a lot of green juice drinks. Learn to cook middle eastern foods.

Tonight I’m making my first attempt; Mediterranean Lentil Salad, which I will have for lunch tomorrow.  And tomorrow, after I juice for breakfast, I will take the pulp and make a soup, with lentils and barley.  A good start, at least!

Shocking

On a whim, I just weighed myself.  I honestly thought that the scale wouldn’t register, that I would still be too high.  But it DID!  I’ve lost ten pounds; not just in a week, but since my first visit to the pulmonologist a few weeks ago.  It was very nice to see those numbers, and inspiring to help me stick to this plan.

I need to carve a few hours out of my day  somehow; half an hour for sun and exercise, half an hour for meditation, half an hour for reading sacred texts, half an hour for new hygiene routines.  I also need to compose menus so I don’t eat impulsively, and I’d really like an hour or so for course work.  Then there’s the time I want to enjoy Ojai.  See the galleries, parks, shops, participate in some activities.

I guess it’s a good thing I’m only working part time…

One Week

Today is one week of my journey. So far, it’s been easy. I’m surrounded by people who are loving and supportive. My family, and my husband in particular, are willing to help me with anything I ask, because they want me healthy.

It’s good to be loved.

The novelty is wearing off, a bit, I think; I’m starting to feel hungry more. I also think my eating has been a bit erratic; not at set times, eating what I can grab in the house. I need to work on that. I also need to start keeping a food log, because I’m not sure I’m even getting a thousand calories a day right now, and I don’t think that’s good.

My mood has been so improved. I have stopped wanting to cry all the time, which is a blessing. I get to spend more time with the kids, and that does wonders for my state of mind. The brain cells are starting to fire up again, though some things still seem daunting, but I can definitely see improvement.

This weekend I’m going to do the stats thing; take measurements, a “before” photo, weigh in. It’s always gratifying to see concrete signs of change.

Eating

Just watched a DVD called “Eating” which was too long by half and claimed every ill in the world is caused entirely by eating meat. A little extreme, but still… it’s eye opening too.

Woke up with a headache this morning; probably due to lack of sleep. Can’t seem to get enough; even now that I don’t have to get up at four am, I still go to bed too late and wake too early. Need to work on that.

Green tea with cayenne, cinnamon and honey for breakfast.

Madhyatmika

Madhyatmika means balance. The middle way. I am making a conscious effort to change my life in many, many ways, to find that balance in my health, in my spirit, in my mind. The first step was leaving a job that had become toxic for me.

You know how they say God closes a door, but opens a window?

On the last possible day before I would have to go back to that toxic job after an extended medical leave, I found a job. Not just any job, but a dream job. Doing something meaningful. Something where I can stretch my mind, learn things I have always wanted to learn. In an environment of health, support, spirituality.

So I took this as a sign. This job change is just the beginning of my ridding my body and my soul from the toxins I have allowed to build up. I am changing my diet, changing my expectations, moving ahead, with great hope and promise.

My new mentor Khabir is guiding me; advising me on the specific changes I should make to optimize my health. I am very committed to taking his advice and have decided to eliminate all dairy (no ice cream!) and all red meat. I am giving up coffee (me? who’da thunkit?) and eating mostly vegetables and fruit, with some whole grains. I have been doing it for five full days, and I can already feel a difference. My lungs are clearer, I’m not wheezing with minimal activity anymore, and most importantly, my outlook has changed.

This blog will be a journal of my path down this road. I hope you will walk it with me, and we can support each other. Life is too long to be unhappy and too short to be afraid.