New year, new leaf!

Hi Everyone!

I turned over a new leaf (again) a couple of months ago, but haven’t been blogging about it. Now it’s time to get things caught up!

I don’t plan on posting a quit meter very often, so I’ll catch you up, then leave it for special occasions.
1 year, 7 months and 15 days. This one is in the bag!

I have been posting a weekly diet post on Facebook, but I’m bringing that back here.

I didn’t weigh-in last week or post last week, because I wanted to take a break. I think it allowed for a little reflection on the holidays and what is going on with my body.

Sugar, sugar, sugar. Sugar is bad. Duh! I ate a lot of sweets over the holidays, always my downfall, but I have honestly never reflected on how it effects me. I think for every bite of chocolate came hours of craving for more. During the weeks I’ve been “good” I have had few cravings, and a normal hunger response. The first few days after my last “sweets fest” saw intense cravings for sweets and was hungry all the time.
Now that I have reasserted my eating plan, I have felt a lot better with less cravings.

Lots have folks have asked me why I am dieting. First, selective clothing choices can hide lots of extra poundage, and I was heavier than I looked. Second, one of my 2014 goals is to maximize my health. In 2013, I was diagnosed with hypertension. Already dealing with Fibromyalgia and degenerative joint disease, the high blood pressure diagnosis was a clear signal that my body needs a change. For 2014, working with my doctor, I intend to remove as many of the contributing factors to these problems as I can. A friend described it very well, “Take the blood pressure drugs and eat the mashed potatoes and gravy, or stop eating the mashed potatoes and gravy so you can stop taking the drugs.”

I have been reading a lot about foods and am slowing getting rid of the foods that cause or contribute to inflammation and high blood pressure. I have also decided to add three foods to my daily diet. These foods seem to have amazing benefits for the body, and I plan on reaping some of those.

I won’t list all the benefits here, Google is much better at providing this info than I am, and even a quick search for each of these will be an eye opener.
The first, coconut everything. I buy whole coconut and toast my own and drink the fresh coconut water inside. Coconut oil, extra virgin cold pressed, is helpful inside and out.
Second is Kefir. Yep, your bodies ability to process nutrients is just as important as the nutrients themselves.
Last, and this is the one with the biggest bang for the buck, Chia seeds. This one is good for everything, and may be a big weapon in the blood pressure fight if all the hype is true.

So, that is where I’m starting the new year. Better food and more exercise for better health in 2014!

I’m 1.4 pounds lighter than last weigh-in, and just a little smarter (I hope). Who is with me? Let’s make this year amazing!

Jo

Hi Everyone!

If you are reading, thanks for hanging in there!

Lots of good news today.

My Quit meter is 1 year, 0 months and 2 days. Yep, that is a huge milestone for me! I didn’t do anything to celebrate. My spouse has fallen off the wagon and didn’t really want to hear much about it. I did post it on Facebook, and got a lot of kudos! The celebrations don’t matter. Just happy to be free!

Still chipping away at those bills. I racked up a few more between January and now over the high blood pressure and hormone crisis, but those have been paid off, as is my car, so we get to refocus now on snowballing those bigger debts. The kid is getting more expensive, lol. Football , basketball and camps. He has also developed the taste for a game called Magic: The Gathering. It is all OK. He is smarter than the both of us, pulling straight A’s again this semester. He is also sweet and polite and a joy to be around every day for me, and I think he’s happy. He has always been a “still waters run deep” kid, but yeah, I think he’s happy.

Last doctors appointment I weighted in at 178.2 pounds. Too big! I know, I keep saying I’m going to do something, but this time I did. I started working out Sunday, both my spouse and I. We get up every morning at 5:30 and do a The Biggest Loser Wii game workout. So far, it has been the “light” workout, and it’s kicking our butts. lol.  Just lets you know how bad of shape we are both in! 😉

I have also been eating a lot better. No soda at all, cutting back on caffeine, better quality food.  My spouse makes us smoothies every morning after exercise with frozen mixed fruit, protein powder and soy milk. My boss has banned us from eating inside the building at all, so that helps me cut down on snacks.

Migraines have been very few and far between since taking the blood pressure medicine Verapamil, and my blood pressure has moved down to 130/85. I hope with the good eating, weight loss and added exercise that it will return to normal and I can get off the meds. Although, the migraine prevention aspect of the one medication will motivate me to keep taking it!

it’s time

Well, it’s been a while.

Happy news first. My quit meter is 11 months 5 days.

The bad news, my partner started smoking again about a month ago. I have reall y put my foot down, and am working hard on her to quit again.

The rest of the bad news? I have let myself fall apart since January 1st.
I have gained a LOT of weight, now up to 176. My blood pressure went up to a crazy 160/100 consistently, and the migraines got horrible.

I have taken a few positive steps.
Although our insurance changed to a horrible plan, I have been to the doctor a lot this year, trying to get things straightened out.
I am now taking 2 blood pressure meds. One help with migraines (an has reduced them a lot). The other has a diuretic.  I am maintaining about 130/80 now. I still don’t know what has caused this. Although the stress is high, my colesteral is crazy low.
I also started full time progesterone and estrogen to get my hormones back in line.
I think the fibro is well controlled, with flares every 2-3 weeks. I am having a lot of problems with my right knee, but I’m not ready yet to deal with it. After losing oth hips, i’m still not ready to be told the knee is gone, so I’ll continue to baby it.

What needs to happen now, is a lifestyle change. I need to go on a diet and find some sort of exercise program my body can handle.

my problem is both time and motivation. I just found time tonight, found?, no made time tonight to paint my toenails. Something I have been trying to get done for 4 weeks. Sigh.

So, bear with me, here we go, a 51 year ol woman trying to find herself once again!

Wish me luck!

Jo

A quick post to start the day

OK, I am a little better prepared to start the food day, meaning I have a Lean Cuisine for lunch later. I completely blew yesterday!

I was not mentally ready. I was hungry every minute yesterday, and I am never hungry like that. It was all just a matter of “you can’t have that so you want it and everything else”. Very immature I know, still, if it was easy everyone would do it right? LOL

What I have to remember is I CAN have whatever I want, as long as I stay within my points.

As long as I am here and pumping myself up, I’ll add my Quit Meter. I have been nicotine free for 5 months and 3 days!

Food Today:

Peach Greek yogurt w/ granola (points?)

2 point banana

1 tbs. peanut butter

1 rice cake

Cal 200/fat 6/protein 12/sugar 6 – lean cuisine (points ?)

For dinner I had a bowl of cereal.

I will look up points tonight. Then as a late night snack I had a PB&J. I’ll come back here when I transcribe the points, but I think I was well under 18.

Meter Reader

4 months and 18 days!
Great meter, yes?
I have been to several social engagements where there were a lot of smokers, and I have not been tempted!
However.. There have been times! I had a very stressful morning at work Tuesday, and I remember thinking that I wanted a smoke so bad I could smell the smoke, but a few deep breathes and it got better.

Quit Meter!

I just got a message from my phone that says, “Congratulations, you have quit smoking for 3 months!”

That’s it! That’s my post today. If any of my very quiet readers would care to post a little note in a congratulatory style (hint hint nudge nudge) it would make me feel even better about the fact that I have not polluted myself or my fellow human beings with anything stronger than these poor musings.

Think of something YOU have done for YOURSELF lately, and post it. Write it here, or on your own blog, but write it down and celebrate it. Haven’t done anything just for you in a while, then post hat you PLAN TO DO for yourself, and let’s celebrate that! Find a moment to feel good about you today.

Hugs, Jojo

Quitting, the emotional side

I want to write advice about quitting smoking.

I read the blog To feel peace again, my journey to freedom. She is where I was just 45 days ago.

I was a person with asthma that smoked. I know what you are thinking, “Why on earth would a person with asthma get near a cigarette???” You would look at me in utter disgust, and I would feel my self-esteem plummet again. I would also light another cigarette.

What you don’t realize, is that the smoking came first, long before the asthma. For most of us, the health issues have to get a lot worse before we consider quitting. The quitting is always in the back of our minds, but so is the pain of quitting.

Like her, the asthma has gotten worse, and it is harder to recover from.

This spring was bad. This spring was round after round of bronchitis, then pneumonia. More antibiotics, more steroids. Medicine that made you well, but made you sick with other things as well.

Let me tell you, heaped on to everything else, on all the other things that motivated me to quit smoking, the one thing that set it all in motion.

I read a blog written by a smoker. A smoker that began blogging after being diagnosed with cancer. First her lungs, then eventually her brain. It was a motivational, heartbreaking read. Deborah’s blog is here if you want to read, but be warned, it is a hard, hard story.

The thing I got from it, the thing I really want to share with you, is that often (not always, I know) people really begin to fight when the fight is so much harder.

They fight to live. They take horrible drugs that ravage their bodies, and they fight. They get in touch with all those they love, and reconcile their feelings, and they fight. They try special diets, new treatment, yoga, religion and they fight to live, to be cured, to win a few more years, a few more days.

Why not fight half that hard, right now, to quit. Why wait until you hear the word “cancer” to strap on your boots and fight for your life? Fight to breathe. Fight for the rest of your life. Why wait until you’re dying to fight to live?

40 days ago, I began my life over. I started the fight to LIVE. I started the fight to beat my addiction.

I have to tell you, going back and reading many of Deborah’s words again, my fight has been so much easier than hers. I am SO sorry her fight ended, but I am grateful she left her words behind for me to learn from, so maybe I will never have to wage the same battle she did.

I want to tell you, as soon as you can, quit.

Shalom, Jo