Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Making Real Changes

April 6 I posted about clean eating and some details about food and its effect on my body. Well as the month drew on I feel like I was doing ok, but not great.

While my mom visited, it was kind of anything goes because we were in "vacation" or "celebration" mode. Does your family celebrate with food like mine? Yep, even though we had splurged at SeaWorld and at the San Diego Zoo, my mom was still stressing about what dessert to make for me on my "birthday celebration dinner". I could care less and was pretty sugared-out. But mom just felt that I would be missing out if she didn't celebrate "properly" with a dessert. I love that woman, she fusses over me. While she visited I had the worst digestive symptoms ever: constipation, farting, bloated, etc. I'm not sure it is ever worth the splurge! It is downright uncomfortable and embarrassing.

The week after Mom left my eating habits got better, more back to normal. So why was I still having issues? I probably would not have thought twice about all of the gas. Gas is a part of a healthy body and is a normal process. But one night my husband told me, "You literally have the worst gas of anyone I have ever known." I seriously couldn't disagree with him. It had gotten bad! Then Monday night I had a horrible case of bloating around 4pm that lasted until at least 7pm. It was time to make a change, because I can't live like that!

So Monday night in my desperation, I did some searching on the internet. I wrote down possible causes as: Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Lactose Intolerance or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. And of course I surveyed some friends on Facebook. A familiar answer that run true to me was the Paleo Diet (way of living). I had to admit to myself that it was time to give it a try for real.

Let me tell you, I am not a diet person. AT ALL. I can't stand the word! I don't like listening to people tell me that they tried this diet and that diet, or that they "can't" eat things for fear of ruining their diet. The worst is when someone grabs a sweet or something of that sort and says it means they are "being bad". I honestly do not know what it is about the word diet. I guess in a way I am stubborn about food. I love food! And ain't nobody gonna tell me what I can and cannot eat! I think the reason "diets" drive me nuts is that they are very superficial and almost always don't get to the bottom of why a person needs it in the first place! They are just a band-aid solution.

But the Paleo way of living isn't a diet, it is a different way of looking at food. Scratch is a different way of looking at your body. Instead of looking at the food pyramid and trying to find balance, it is about really understanding what is in each food and what that food does once it is inside your body. It's not about what you can and cannot have, it is about what your body needs and does not need. It is really interesting and incredibly valid! Want more information? Check out these links: The Paleo Diet,, and one more article on understanding the premise of Paleo.

The simplest way to put it!

I don't embark on this new journey lightly, nor with a whole heap of enthusiasm to be honest. I love bread, I love carbs, I love sweets! Oh sugar, how I love thee! Dairy, you are a very close second to my heart. But...I don't love how these things are making my body feel. And in a sort of tough-love manner, my body is telling me it wants other things. My plan is to go as Paleo as possible at first, and then reintroduce an item here or there to test my tolerance (not just to bring it back but more as an experiment). Then if I can't get around a carb item, I will try my best to choose a gluten-free option. If I can't get around a dairy item, I will try taking a Lactaid or other digestion aid.

Lastly, you may be wondering...if this is a running blog, why all the talk about eating? Well let me tell you. I haven't been running a lot but when I am running a lot, I don't notice the effect of the food I eat on my body. I don't notice a pound here or there. I don't feel sluggish with sugar because it burns away so quickly. I don't feel the effects of dairy so much because it seems that gas works itself out during runs. Even though I have been walking a lot, these issues have still been hanging out and are a good enough reason to make a real change.

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