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Monday, October 22, 2012

Return to the Moonlight

It's been awhile since I've blogged here, but life kinda sucks when you have a migraine all day, every day. Then, just when you figure out the problem, you realize your computer screen is adding to it.

Yep, that happened to me, so I took some time off. Then, it just got too easy to stay away....

Yeah, in that time, I understood why many, many authors decide to just stop for awhile. Sure, you want to keep your name out there and your blog active, but at what cost?

The very thing that inspires my stories and characters - it's called life - was suffering from the stress I put on myself. Okay, it wasn't all just from mental stress, some of it was from physical stress.

Either way, I knew I needed to make some changes, so I did. However, I knew if I were to make these changes permanent fixtures to my life I would have to focus my efforts on making those changes, and keeping them. It took awhile, but they seem to have stuck, and I'm beginning to see some remarked improvement...again.

What changes did I make?

Well, I knew I needed to make some physical changes and get healthy if I wanted to be more physically active and just enjoy life. Sure, I'm still dealing with pain all day every day, but it's not migraines anymore, it's just the normal pain that someone like me deals with and the changes I've made are helping to make this pain more and more manageable.

I tried for a second time to give up Coca Cola, but no luck there, however, it's okay because I managed to make some other very important changes.

While I have tried to eat whole-grain, multi-grain, bread on a regular basis, I just couldn't do it, but I have found I like a whole-grain, honey-wheat bread, and I'm able to eat that more regularly than the other bread. It's become such a part of my diet now that when I go to restaurants, I'm annoyed when I don't see a multi-grain bread as an option!

The same goes for junk food. I've found that I can substitute a peanut butter/dark chocolate granola bar for a candy bar. I've also found that I've lost my taste for most of the candy on the market. If I really, really need dark chocolate, I just eat a couple of chips (about 12 at most) and that seems to satisfy that need. I now eat Kashi Pita Chips and Country Cheddar Crackers for most of my other snack foods (over crackers, pretzels, and Munchos).

My pasta choices are better too. I have now chosen to eat whole-grain pastas. That makes a big difference. With whole-grain pastas, I do not find myself getting hungry so easily like I would with regular pasta.

As a result of all of these changes, I find that on the whole I eat less every day and never feel hungry or starving like I used to feel all the time. That was part of my fear, and why it took me so long to return to regular blogging. I was afraid I'd feel like I was starving and eat while I sat here at the computer. However, I no longer have that fear because I no longer need to eat while sitting at the computer...drink a beverage, no.

I've managed to finally in the past week break that plateau of 195lbs that has been plaguing me for the past couple of months. Granted, I'm not losing as fast as I could, but I figure I'm losing weight and eating much better - all in the face of food allergies to pretty much all fruits and vegetables!

I did not make all of these changes over night, but at a time. I gave my mind and body a chance to adjust to the new changes. I believe that was key - I gave each new habit a chance to take root and boot out an old bad habit before moving on to the next one. I plan on trying to add in regular walks next.

If someone like me can change my lifetime of bad eating habits (30+ years), anyone can. If you want it bad enough, you can make it happen. No one else has the power to truly change your life for you, only you do.

It took me a long time to realize that fact. Once I did, and realized that I wanted to lose the weight for me - and no one else - I became strong enough to overcome those reasons I fed myself junk (I can't have variety in my diet or eat healthy because of all my food allergies) and make the changes that are making my body healthier.

I'll admit, when I was younger, those excuses felt valid as there weren't healthier options I could actually stomach because they were made with fruits and veggies, and better flours were really, really expensive - if you could even find them in the stores around here. Now, there are more grain options out there as well as more and more stores - including national/local chain stores - carrying better breads, better snack options, and better food alternatives than ever before.

Better options exist, I just have to look for them.

I no longer crave junk food these days for the most part. Often, I find myself craving protein. I find myself eating more meat than I used to, so I'm even more of a carnivore than before, which seems hard to believe. However, where I used to want beef all the time, I know what chicken or turkey on a regular basis with some pork or beef thrown in once in awhile to mix it up.

There are so many items like sausage, pepperoni, and bacon made from turkey (which makes them lower-fat, healthier options) today that it's easier to eat poultry than it used to be. I find ground turkey meat tacos to be less heavy, but just as filling. Tacos don't sit like a rock in my stomach anymore. Using a whole-grain/whole-wheat crust, olive oil and turkey pepperoni, pizza has come back on the menu - as a much healthier, and lower calorie version.

Funny, I find my diet to be less restricted once I found I could eat different whole grains than I did before I changed my diet.

So, how does all this relate to writing?

Well, I find that my creativity took a huge boost when I started feeling better!

3 Moonbeams (comments):

hollie said...

Good for you Carrie!! Living is hard to do..especially when there is food involved!! I'm glad you are feeling better!!

Carrie said...

Yes, food can be problematic. Thanks Hollie!

Kathleen O said...

I try, really I do to change my eating habits, but like you already know, it is really hard. I admire you Carrie.. Good for you.