Back In The Saddle Again. . .

I was doing so well, even on vacation.  I was getting up, exercising every day, watching what I ate and not doing too bad.  But, slowly, one drink becomes two.  You eat a little more of your entrée, you have another helping of that appetizer, you start making rich, fattening food choices rather than your lean, healthy ones.  And I just cannot do that without my stomach feeling AWFUL.

I went out to dinner last night and ate all this AMAZING food.

Rohrs 1

Rohrs 2

Rohrs 3

Rohrs 4

Rohrs 5

All of this food was incredibly delicious, which of course, is the biggest problem.  OK, maybe not the biggest problem, the biggest being it was rich.  Like really good rich.

That was the final straw – my stomach had been bothering me off and on for about a week and when I got home last night, it was the worst it has been in a long, long time.  Super bloated (note to self – you just CANNOT eat sausage so quit trying to tell yourself a little here or there won’t hurt, it WILL), painful spasms, gas and just feeling downright uncomfortable.  I have a horrible digestive system, as I have mentioned before and it takes a lot of work to keep it on track, which I obviously, from the pictures above, have been slacking on.  Pizza last week, etouffee the week before, duck and ham sandwich with cheese Sunday, need I say more?

So, this morning I put my foot down and say NO MORE.  No more feeling like crap, no more being lazy with what I eat, my workouts and meal planning.  It’s time to get back in the saddle again and do what I know needs to be done.  Started today with a protein bar after getting into work, since that is about all I could stomach, a small Evol meal for lunch and I have plain Greek yogurt with fresh blueberries for a pre-workout snack.  Tonight is also boot camp, for the first time in MONTHS.  Yup, been slacking there too.  We used to have our amazing boot camp class here at work twice a week – Monday and Wednesday nights right after work and while I could always make it to the Monday class, start of the week, not much on my plate yet, by Wednesday, it was hit or miss.  Well, unfortunately, our Wellness Committee decided to take this class down to only once a week in the summer, assuming everyone would be too busy with vacations, etc to do 2 a week and voted by a very slim minority to make it Wednesday.  UGH – I have just not been able to set aside that day consistently and the one time I did make it a few weeks ago, the instructor didn’t show up!

I know I am going to stink it up tonight – I haven’t done any Crossfit workouts at home in a long time so my body fat has been slowly rising, which means it is so hard to move your body and do those tough exercises.  I just have to keep telling myself through the 45 minutes of hell, it is all worth it and the more I do it, the easier it will be.

Being a foodie and a remotely locally famous one makes this whole business 10 times harder than a normal person.  I am incredibly blessed to have met some amazingly generous people in the restaurant industry – that entire meal you see above was totally comped but luckily, we didn’t know that until AFTER the meal!  Would it have changed what I ordered?  I highly doubt it but my point is stuff like that can happen all the time when I dine out.  The owners, chefs, etc are just trying to be nice and show how much they appreciate the work I do to get the word out about their business but committing to dining out often to support them then their little perks to boot, it’s a constant struggle.  Hence this blog, Struggles of a Healthy Foodie.

Can you be a foodie and be healthy?  ABSOLUTELY.  I have been doing this for almost 5 years now and weigh slightly less than when this whole journey started.  So many local restaurants are trying to provide healthy dishes with fresh ingredients, especially in the summer, this should be a no brainer.  But, there are other restaurants out there with such tempting, HEAVY and equally delicious offerings as well.  I am not dogging these places at all but they are just not the types of places that I can frequent and maintain the health that I want and need.   Or, if I do, I just have to be very careful about what I order and how much of it I eat.

What exactly is wrong with me? I have talked about this many times but for those new to my blog, I have Irritable Bowel Syndrome with constipation as well as a lazy digestive system (which seem to go hand in hand) and chronic acid reflux.  The acid reflux has been kept under control with medication since I was in college but over the past year, I have learned that taking this Rx long term can inhibit your ability to absorb B-12, which basically makes you feel like shit.  Tired, achy, foggy headed – you kind of feel like you have the flu all the time, so I have been trying to wean myself off those meds and taking a subcutaneous B-12 tablet every day (which I do a lousy job of remembering).  I tried working with an herbalist last year, to see if she could offer me more natural remedies and relief but took myself off all the herbs around April of this year because I wasn’t seeing a vast improvement anymore.

On top of all this, I will be 42 years old in mere days and also have noticed vast hormone fluctuations coming on in the past year or 2.  I have been tested every which way and been told I am still in the “normal” ranges, whatever that means and that this is probably just the start of peri-menopause.  Who even heard of this before?  Isn’t menopause bad enough but NO, you could be treated to up to 10 years of peri-menopause on top of it.  My face gets hot (but not a HOT FLASH, per se), I get very tired and basically feel out of sorts, not like myself.  Irrational, emotional, impatience – pretty much all the worst stuff about being a woman.  If this continues, I may turn back to the herbs because they did relieve some of my hormone type symptoms for a while.

My liver sucks – I have a condition called Gilbert’s syndrome where my bilirubin levels are always high.  My brother was born with the same thing and his is much worse than mine but I still notice it affecting me from time to time, mostly in my gallbladder and bile duct, which is a whole other conversation.

Why am I telling you all this?  To everyone on the outside looking in, I look like a perfectly normal, incredibly healthy person but I will say this once again, I have to work VERY HARD to maintain this for all of the reasons I mentioned before and more (I also have Reynaud’s syndrome – give me some more time, I can probably think of a few others. . .)  Most of us have some type of health issue we are struggling with but it is so easy to just put it in the back of our mind and go about our normal lives, trying to be like everyone else.  Eating like they do, relaxing and taking naps like they do, being generally lazy.  But, when I do that, that is when I feel my absolute worst but there is so much pressure to NOT be healthy.  People make fun of you for being so careful, so picky, so focused, so demanding of yourself.  Do I care?  No, not in any kind of emotional way – I am very secure in who I am and rarely let other people make me feel bad about myself.  What they DO DO (ha ha), is silently give me permission in my mind, to slack off.

I am hoping I can turn this around and rather than let them influence me to slack, I can hopefully influence others out there to jump up and take charge of their health.  You have the power, you can turn it around, you can make yourself feel better.  Just takes a little research, a lot of hard work but it is so worth it in the end.  SO, here we go!

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