Thursday, January 6, 2011

The 28 Day Challenge: Days 3 & 4

I made it through another day. Two, actually.

As I thought about what to write on this, another survival day, I realized I've been talking about how I'm doing, but not necessarily how I'm feeling. After all, for me this is all one big exercise in feeling better.

So how am I feeling having eliminated dairy, wheat, gluten, added sugar, eggs, caffeine processed foods, peanut products, fruit juices, soy (including soy sauce), corn, farm-raised fish and shellfish, and fish that are high in mercury?

Well...not as great as I would have hoped, I guess.

I was hoping that my bodily aches & pains would magically disappear because somehow one of foods to avoid was a trigger.

Now, in reality I've never had a sensitivity to any foods. And it would be great if the solution were that easy. But the truth is, there are probably a lot of factors to why my 30-something body feels like it's in its 50s.

I was hoping that by giving up dairy my sinus problems would miraculously be solved.

Unfortunately, I'm still waking up with the same...sinus problems as three days ago.

I was hoping that by eating all the "tree-hugger" health-food store foods I'd have this golden aura, hovering just above the ground and instead of walking, I'd float carelessly through each day.

OK, so maybe that's an exaggeration. But for real--I thought that once I got over the initial couple of days, I'd quickly feel better on the inside and it would, of course, show on the outside.

Now I realize this is only Day Three and "The Glow" doesn't really set in until about Day 12 or so. But so far, I'm just not feeling the benefits.

What I am definitely feeling is irritated. Mostly that I can't have chocolate. I still want chocolate. Pretty bad. Not as bad as Day Two. But still.

And dessert. I'm irritated that I can't have dessert as I'm used to having. Which often includes chocolate (Double Whammy). And that Fella can and does freely have dessert, well, it doesn't help. Nor does it help that he throws it in my face by saying I essentially ritualize dessert.

It's DESSERT! And it's SACRED!!!

In other news, I'm also feeling grateful. Grateful that I've been introduced to some new foods that I probably wouldn't have otherwise tried without this challenge. After all, I love food. Which brings us full circle, I'd say.

So I'll keep plodding along. My next personal challenge: figure out how to make on-plan pancakes this weekend!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The 28-Day Challenge: Day Two

I’m still not as organized as I would like to be for this thing. But I managed to make my lunch for the week this morning. And I wasn’t even all that late to work this morning. I may look a little haggard, but I’ll blame that on the caffeine-sugar-and-whatever-else DTs.

I’ve been tired and feel almost like I’m on the verge of getting sick.

There have been a few things--habits--that I’ve noticed in these two short days. I pick at food when I shouldn’t. Like when I get 4.0’s breakfast ready in the morning, I totally lick the spoon I use to dish out his yogurt. Or I take my own bite of cottage cheese after dishing his portion out for lunch.

Though this is not a new discovery by any means, but I noticed after lunch I wanted a piece of chocolate. Baaad. I am totally, utterly conditioned to want that at that time. And the urge did not go away. And it got worse as people came throughout the day to raid the candy basket that sits at my co-worker’s desk over the cube from me.

And tart (read: under ripe) mango does not make a suitable substitute.

But somehow I managed to make it through the day without caving to the peppermint bark someone brought in, or to a cup of coffee. (I miss your face, Coffee!)

And I know what I’m making for dinner!

I actually hope we’ll keep up this early-to-bed routine. I need more sleep. For tomorrow is another [Day Three].

The 28-Day Challenge: Day One

**Edit** Additional info on The Challenge

I started the day hungry. Thinking back, I probably should have had some knock-down, drag-out dessert to close out Sunday night. Instead, we grazed on cookies we had sitting around. Nothing against cookies, but in the grand scheme they would not be the dessert course of my last supper.

It was also very disappointing to not have enough guidance for the plan. I stood in my kitchen without a clue what to have for breakfast. I didn’t have all of the ingredients to make any of the three smoothie recipes that the magazine spotlights for Week One. So I improvised and made a smoothie with only approved foods that I did have on hand.

Then we went to Whole Foods to round out my already at capacity crisper drawers. And as we approached nap time (for 4.0) I still didn’t have everything I was somehow convinced I needed. And despite the fact that I bought rice cakes for the first time since probably high school. (Enough really isn’t enough!)

The entire day I thought about quitting. I looked at my kitchen and felt overwhelmed. It was a disaster. I thought about my meal plan for the week. What meal plan? Also a disaster. I thought about how much money we’re dropping for just one week! DISASTER! (This last point being a driving factor to forge ahead, however). A 3 p.m. caffeine-sugar-and-whatever-else withdrawal headache? Diz.Ass.Tur.

The entire day was pretty much one big improvisation.

At least I knew what I was making for dinner--the recipe of the day that I had managed to track down all of the ingredients for by sundown. And it was good! I mean, really good! No seriously.

But we kept the tele turned off and chatted to the soundtrack of classical radio. (I know--such sophisticates! The only things missing from the picture perfection were a log on the fire and glasses of wine--which of course are strictly prohibited from the challenge at this point).

We talked Challenge. We talked weight loss. We talked motivating factors. Then we talked about taking down the Christmas ornaments (which we proceeded to do).

Then it judgment day was upon me: dessert time.

I pretty much avoided Fella as he ate his ice cream-egg nog milkshake concoction (rather expediently, I must hand to him) and had a cup of tea while I sent an angst-ridden Tweet about it from the bedroom.

Then we went to bed. At 9:30. We usually don’t get around to the sleep thing until closer to 11. Fella couldn’t fall asleep and wanted to talk more. I was exhausted from my disaster-at-all-turns day and my body was aching (quite literally) for sleep.

Oddly enough, we agreed that even though we slept the whole night, neither of us felt particularly rested this morning.

Day Two.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Well, Hello 2011!

We bid a fond farewell to 2010 last night with a dungeness crab dinner and a bottle of bubbles (that was given to us by our neighbor right after we were married...two years ago). And we toasted the 2011 with a dessert cocktail instead - a nog with a little nip!

Last year, we decided that 2010 was our year to let go. Mostly of BS emotional psycho-babble baggage holding us back. So as we tucked ourselves into bed last night, we agreed that we did alright. Maybe not perfect, but good enough.

While we will continue to let go in 2011, this time of more tangible things (spare tire around my mid-section, I'm talking to you!) this year will be more about doing. Doing things to keep up with 4.0. Doing things that make (and keep) us happy and fulfilled. Doing more with our friends.

So instead of perpetuating the wild goose chase after those things, I'm pledging to let go of our excuses so that in 2011 we Take Action.