Back again – an update

Wow, it’s been nearly one year since I last came here. One year since my world shattered a little, with the possible PD diagnosis

I have had my moments of complete despair. But to be honest, I got over it.

So instead of making this blog about a possible PD diagnosis and my feelings towards it, I am going to carry on with my fitness/weight loss team, because I am still pursuing  these things. Of course it does not mean that I don’t struggle with my physical limitations (sometimes). I do. But it kinda gives me more drive to do something I struggle with.

With that said… an update!

Well what happened since June last year? A lot.

I think the two main things are: I have stopped running and I am eating a paleo diet now.

The stopped running part happened quite casually, my running buddy hurt her knee and we stopped. We never started again. Sad, but true.

The paleo diet started with a sugar detox. After a lot of soul searching, I decided to do a sugar detox – because let’s face it, sugar is my downfall. I love sugar. Cakes, chocolate, pastries, biscuits, you name it. My biggest struggle (and I think it will be a life time struggle) is moderation when it comes to sweets. I cannot do ‘one bite’. It’s almost like that one bite triggers a monster that lives inside my brain and I CANNOT STOP after I start. I got tired of feeling like a failure, after a whole week of ‘being good’, the weekend would come. The kids have Friday treats, so I would obviously get a treat for myself too, but I would not stop there, it would carry on all weekend.

So I decided that something drastic needed to be done, and I know I am a sugar addict. So I thought it would be ‘fun’ to cut sugar out of my diet.

The first thing we did as a family was to clear out the pantry. That meant everything that was processed or had ‘sugar’ as one of the ingredients. We got rid of 98% of our food, that was so shocking to me. After examining a few labels, I came across one of those muesli bars that are lunchbox friendly (I was feeding it to my kids every day). I kid you not, it had 33 ingredients listed in the ingredient list, I did not know what most of them even were. I could not believe that was what we call ‘food’ It made me realise how far we are from what we are from what we are meant to eat. I don’t know how things started to get so bad. If you think about it, you could barely find overweight people 100 years ago.  Now, you don’t have to look far. You would think that with all ‘low fat’ foods available these days, people would lose weight?

That’s mainly what struck me and convince me to go paleo. When I cut all the sugar from my diet, I had to eat clean. I had no choice. So things like bread and pasta also went out of the window.

People that are the other side of the fence (non-paleo eaters) cannot imagine a life without pasta, and think it’s so hard to follow this way of eating, but let me tell you a secret, it’s not that hard. Sure, the first week is hard, a mental shift is happening. What is hard? Feeling so tired all the time, having no energy, or even worse, feeling sick all the time! For so long we were told that fat is bad for you, grains are good for you, blahblah, when you start to challenge those beliefs, people (yourself included) are automatically sceptical and defensive and some people don’t get it. No one wants to hear that their ‘healthy’ diet is actually not that healthy. You spend so long trying all these things, eating all your grains, the low fat products. In your head, you think you are doing everything right, but think about it: Why are people so overweight these days? The low-fat eaters. Some people run and run and are still overweight. Some people cannot lose weight at all, no matter what they do. It hyas got to make you think!! I could go on and on and on. If you are not convinced and need to do is a little bit of reading, I recommend www.marksdailyapple.com and www.whole30.com

Cutting sugar was not easy, because we are surrounded by it. It is so hard to go grocery shopping, read labels and find out that you cannot buy curry paste, it has added sugar in it. Bummer. You start to get creative (thank you to Pinterest) Having no sugar gets easier as time goes by. It’s tough at the beginning, not going to lie, but if I can do it, anyone can, and I mean it. It takes a little bit of planning and a little bit of purpose and stubbornness but it’s possible, believe me. If you want more info, you can write to me. I am happy to share info and tips.

So after the sugar detox, I noticed a huge difference in myself. No heart burn. I didn’t get tired in the middle of the afternoon. I slept really well and woke up feeling refreshed. And I lost 4kgs in 3 weeks. My husband’s dandruff disappeared, my daughter’s acne improved noticeably. It is hard to ignore the benefits. And it’s even harder to go back to old ways when you learn so much about what you are actually feeding your body.

So that’s how I started. While sugar detoxing, you are eating a paleo diet already (minus the fruit and you are also allowed some dairy products), so the transition to paleo is not a difficult one.

It’s been nearly one year, I have lost 10kgs since starting. I haven’t counted one calorie, I haven’t felt deprived and I do not feel like I am in a diet. The sugar detox gave me freedom from food slavery, the paleo diet keeps me in check. I am not gonna sit here and pretend I am perfect the whole time, because I am not, far from it. Sometimes, when I allow myself a treat, it triggers my ‘monster’ side, and it takes me a while to get back to the wagon. I am not talking about months, it usually just takes a couple of days. But that’s just me, I found that I need to be strict with myself, but some people follow a 80/20 rule when going paleo. Which is great, because life happens.

On the fitness side of things, I have started weight lifting, doing some strength training instead of concentrating in cardio exercises. I have notices that my body shape has changed a lot since I started to lift. And I love the feeling of empowerment lifting gives me! I also engaged a person al trainer (that only happened 3 weeks ago) since my husband is working evenings and I cannot get to the gym after work like I used to. I am having 5.30am sessions with the PT. Which is good and bad. Good, because I cannot get out of it. I know she is waiting for me at the gym and I cannot stand her up. Bad because getting up at 5am is not fun. Especially now that it is winter here.

Like I mentioned before, I am not running anymore but I want to get back into it. I forgot how hard it is to self-motivate. I know it’s something I need to do to get things moving again. Running gives me the feeling that I can accomplish anything! It reminds me that my body responds so well to it, I am curious about how efficient my running body will become now that I am feeding it properly

A bad run… well, not so much after all

Wednesday was a hot day. I am talking 41C hot. So hot you can’t even breath properly. I was hoping it was going to cool down a little bit by the time I had to meet my friend for our run. We are just about to finish C25K – week 8, day 3! A non-stop 30 minutes run… who would have thought we would get where we are now when we first took that hard first step? Very exciting!

Anyways

Running for me as I mentioned before is a VERY mental game. I am still very much a beginner runner, and I do struggle sometimes. Let’s say my fitness levels are not what I want them to be yet, but I am getting there.

So my friend was coming to meet me at 7.30pm for our run. We just go across the road from my place as I am lucky enough to live by an exercise track. 7.30pm came and I checked the outside temperature, it was still 38C. My goodness, this run was going to be a challenge and I embraced it. With heart monitor strapped to my chest, all running apps on (Nike Running and C25K) we started our 5 minute walk warm-up. By the end of it when my phone beeped indicating we had to start running, I was already dying. It was too hot, my mouth was dry. But we started to run.

We only go up and down the road, from the roundabout to the pole at the other end of the exercise path and back. It’s just over 1km each way, maybe 1.2kms. So by calculations, since we did 4.6kms last time, it means we have to go up and down the road 3.5 times. It actually sucks to know how many times it takes to complete our exercise, because when you are having a bad run, you know how far you still have to go until it ends.

I tried to disengage myself from the fact that I was struggling big time. I tried to distract myself with random thoughts, talking to my friend (even though its kinda hard to do that because we are huffing and puffing big time) but in the end, I couldn’t get myself distracted enough. So I pushed myself to my limit. By then I was so dry and thirsty I had no saliva left. It was the first time in ages I actually had to take a few steps in between running, because I couldn’t do it anymore. I was wondering the whole time why the heck this run was such a bad run, especially after Monday when I felt on top of the world and didn’t struggle at all. When it came to the last minute, I had spent all my energy.

We finished the run but I did not feel really satisfied with it. In my eyes, because I had taken a few steps (or more than a few), the whole run was a fail. We got back home to a welcomed chair and very icy water. Sweat was dripping from places I never thought possible to sweat from. Then I looked at my HRM and I had burned 150 calories more than my usual run. Ahh, that explained why I was so buggered. My body was obviously working extra had, and I felt it big time. I have to say that after that little information was revealed, I was pretty pleased. I obviously had done enough for the night! And by then I was definitely ready for bed