A brain dump.

So much I want to say, yet so few words.

Currently in sort of a strange place in my life. Everything it seems I thought I knew I don’t know, and all I was sure of I quiestion.

Maintanence – a strange place to be. All I’ve known till now is weight gain, followed by a quick stint of weight loss and the cycle repeated. Now that I am in “maintanence” I keep finding myself thinking – what now? A part of me it itching to do something, move somewhere, to keep perfecting myself. Its the hardest thing in the world to just “be”, especially when you’re not yet comfortable with who you are.

So much has changed – both for good and for bad. My eating habits are all over the place, and the constant guessing game is tiering. I want to just throw in the towel and eat whatever – at the same time I know too much about nutrition and health to do that. Another part of me wants to get back to some sense of stability, some knowlage of absolutes. But I’m learning more and more is that nutrition is like religion – everyone believes a certain thing – it doesn’t make it right for wrong. There is some truth in everything – what you need to do is find what works for you. And my God – it’s a long, tiering process.

But – even through all the complication and bad body image days – I don’t regret my recovery thus far one bit. Am I 100% comfortable in my body – no I am not. Do I feel that I did everything “just right” – no I don’t. Do I wish I had done some things better – sure I do. But one thing I can say with 100% certainty is that a whole new world opened up to me that wasn’t available before. For once I can do anything, be anyone, go anywhere. It’s a whole sense of freedom that I’m just discovering. It’s scary, yet awesome at the same time.

And hell, if nothing else I’m getting a HECK of a lot of life experience though this. I mean – what other nutritionist can say they have experimented with this many diets, gone through an eating disorder and figured out what works for them (that part is still coming, but I’m hoping for the best). So at least maybe, long and tiering as this process may be – I MIGHT be able to figure it out and help someone else in the process. Just keeping it possitive 😉

So yes, that is the reason I’m not posting as much – is because I’m not sure what to write about. Currently – I’m trying to keep my head above water, get my life in gear and pretend I have it all together for the outside world. Because lets face it, after 5 years obsessing about something – once you take that away you’re not exactly sure who you are anymore. SO thank you all for bearing with me while I figure all this out – hopefully it’ll be sooner rather then later.

And now – sleep. Tomorrow is another crazy day in the life of me 😛

Getting my life back.

I’m baaaaaaaack.

Gosh, it feels so good just to lie on my coach doing nothing but brousing around blogs, writing emails and snacking 😛 – a bit of lazing around after 2 weeks of craziness – yes please!

So I survived the weekend and the  6 exams. I will say that it hasn’t quite hit me yet – my body is still in “pre-exam survival mode”  ( meaning I went to be at 1:00 AM and woke up at 6:00 AM). My digestive system is still out of whack from eating way too little real food eating too much chocolate and “fast-foods” and drinking way too much coffee.  I started the day on the bit of the wrong foot (chocolate for breakfast anyone :P?) but I’m thinking of doing a little detox over the next few days. Nothing drastic – just less coffee, less sweets, more home cooked food.  Funny thing, I was looking over my photos the other day, and I happened upon my “foodie pics” and was like “darn, I used to eat good food, gotta get back into that :P”.

But I don’t feel guilty about being a bit “unhealthy”. Sure I think I want next exam session to go a bit better-  I streched myself pretty thin with work and studying and I left very little time for me to actually focus on being healthy – which was a mistake. I let myself get a bit overwhelmed with stress and didn’t really cope with it in the best way. But heck, we get up and move on.

So today is a new day, a day to be LAZY!!! My plans – yoga, room organization, real food, a good movie, a walk, maybe the evening shift at work. Mindful living, enjoying life, taking time to appreciate the little things. And catching up with all of you! Gosh, I’ve missed you guys – for real.

SO enjoy today everyone, and stop in some times because I have a lot of catching up to do 😉 Take care

 

And as a teaser, here are some pics from the holiday season – recap soon!

 

 

Quick check in

Yes, I know – I haven’t bloged in ages – Baaaaad blogger 😛

But I had 2 massive exams to prepare for – one was a medical related subjects (different internal illnesses, their symtoms, cures etc.) and biochem. So sorry, I’m not sorry. The best thing was the night before the exam (that was on Wednesday) I came down with a horrible stomach bug. So beside being up practically all night, I had to go to school sick :(. I didn’t do as well as I wanted to, but I tried my best and I think I passed. After that I came home and practically face planted on my couch all afternoon.  Anyhow after a day of eating yogurt and banana’s (my go to sick food) today I feel much better.  My stomach is still a bit wonky – but I’m trying to stay on top of it.  Anyhow, I still have a biochem exam on Saturday to study for, so I can’t afford to be sick any longer 😛 . But enough about me, let’s get onto the fun stuff.

10. Favorite holiday scent.

It’s a tie between apples and cinnamon (hot mulled cider – yum!) and pine needles burning in the fireplace. I get warm and fuzzy just thinking about it.

11. Favorite holiday tradition.

That would be watching “Love actually” with my family/friends while drinking a festive drink (usually hot chocolate or mulled wine) . I also have a personal Christmas tradition – and that is sitting in a dark living room on Christmas Eve, after all the presents have been opened, dinner has been eaten and everyone has gone to bed, and musing on my life. It’s kind of my own personal reflection time I look back on the past year – where I’ve been, how far I’ve come and where I am. IT’s kind of a strange ritual, but I find it very therapeutic.

12. Wrapping paper or gift bags?

Wrapping paper all the way! I love wrapping paper and each year I end up wrapping my own, plus most everyone else’s :P.

13. Favorite Christmas book – Growng up it was always Charles Dicken’s Christmas carol hardcover book with all those old school drawings (kind of gothic) art that I still find kind of creepy. Actually the whole story freaked me out just a little as a kid (especially in the end when he looks over his toombstone – brrrrr). But now I just have fond memories whenever I see/read it.

Will be back after the weekend  craziness with some more substatial posts. Gotta just give it this last final push and I’m through.

Just for fun – what’s your staple sick food? 

Ever had to pass an exam when sick? It’s not the first time this has happened to me – but it usually tends to be a stomach flu thing – yeck 😦

Thankful

I know thanksgiving was yesterday – but for some reason today I find myself sitting here, thinking about all the things I have to be thankful for. So here goes:

– For the past 2 days of no stomach pain. They say you can’t appreciate health, unless you’ve been sick. I’ve had such a rough 2 weeks or so, that right now I’m so thankful for being able to function normally pain free.

– For good food. Recently food and I have had a love/hate relationship. I loathed meal times because it seemed that no matter how hard I tried – I could never get it right. I either ate too much, or too little, or the wrong types of foods, or something. But I realized – hey I should be thankful I even have food to eat – some people don’t have that luxury.

My recent foodie loves 🙂

 

 

– For my body. I’m having a few body issues recently (gaining 5 kg does change your body a bit), but I’m thankful for the fact that I’m feeling better, that I can work and do the things I need to. And even if my body doesn’t look exactly the way I want it to, there are still a lot of good things about it 😉

– For work. Yes my schedule is hectic and I feel like I can’t manage everything at times. But I’m thankful in times like these I can work and do my part to save up towards my studies.

– For my studies. That I get to study something I’m interested in and passionate about. It’s not all downhill, but it’s great to be working towards a future in doing something you love.

One of my uni’s faculty buildings

– For the holiday season and all the joy it brings with it  – the lights, the music, the family atmosphere, my birthday ;P

– For all of you who are one of the best support systems I have. You guys are the best!

What are you thankful for?

What’s your favorite part of the Christmas season? For me it’s a tie between the Christmas music and the lights. I LOVE them both 🙂

Did you know that…

Did you know that…

Eating a big (meaning 400 + calorie) breakfast makes a big difference in energy levels? (I always had this silly ED hang over that I wouldn’t eat huge breakfasts – something about saving calories for the rest of the day I guess. But when after eating a full breakfast I found I had loads more energy, wasn’t hungry 2 hours later and could actually focus on more important things – other then my belly)

Might not look yummy – tasted amazing. Pumpkin overnight oats with flax and raisins topped with peanut butter and cinnemon. Kept me full for a good LONG time 🙂

Walking is therapeutical. Had a bit of a rough morning with some family issues going on, so I decided to go out for a “chill out” walk. Let’s just say it’s something I’ll be doing more often, because I felt a million times better afterwards

Baking on the weekends is fun! Seriously, I baked more in the last 3 days then I did in the last 3 months. I forgot how much I enjoy it.

Rustic apple pie with a gluten free crust. I’m on a pie roll here 😉

Double chocolate brownies

Birthday parties are so much funner when you not only bake the cake – but eat it too ( along with some brownies and oreos – I got my sugar intake for the year today – but I won’t tell if you don’t 😛  And I have to say it felt great to be “in on the action ” instead of sitting on the sidelines luftfully eyeing everyone else’s treats. Time to live life!)

Birthday boy no. 1

And no. 2

It’s an awesome feeling to try on jeans in a store and have them actually fit. (Three cheers for weight gain in the right places 😛  After all everyone knows you need a nice butt to go with jeans – gotta keep on working on it)

Biochem review is the best cure for my insomnia  (seriously 10- 15 minutes in the evening and I am out. Sorry, as much as I’m trying to like chemisty – I really don’t :P)

And speaking of biochem – time for a quick study sesh before I hit the sack. Hope you all have a great week!

Share a – “did you know that…. “from your week.

Apple or pumpkin pie? (In all honesty, I couldn’t pick – I think apple pie for breakfast and pumpkin pie for dessert.)

 

Midnight musings

I’m baaaack 🙂

( for a minute anyways)

Boy oh boy, this has been a really busy week. Whenever I’m absent for longer periods of time in blog world, it’s because I’ve got a whole lot going on in the “real world”.  Since these days finding time to sit down and eat is a challange, blogging gets pushed back on the priority list. But that’s life no?

So what exactly have I been busy doing? Well studying is in full swing now – which means that tests and assigments are piling on. Then when I’m not studying I’m teaching from 4-6 english classes a week, taking the evening shifts at work. Oh and trying to keep everything going on the home front – i.e cooking, cleaning, taking care of siblings. It’s one of the joys of being the oldest in a big family and being involved in the family buisness to boot – there’s really no “down time” because you are pretty much expected to be “on call” 24/7.

But to be honest – I like the fast paced life. Sure, there are days I feel I’m in over my head, there are personality clashes, times I feel stressed and like there’s just not enough hours in the day to get everything done. At the same time there’s kind of a rush that comes with reaching the end of the day and seeing all you accomplished. It beats sitting around being bored all day, that’s for sure.

After struggling to eat anything last week, with a nasty IBS flare up I’ve cut out gluten this week – and things have been much better. Going gluten free is new to me, and I can’t say it’s an easy thing to keep up with when you hardly have time to cook and gluten -free products are not regularly available.  But I haven’t been in any excrutiating pain this week, so it’s telling me that I’m doing something right.

However one really weird thing I noticed is that I’m craving dairy like it’s nobodies buisness. I mean, I’ve always been one to enjoy my yogurt and cheese – but this is seriously getting out of hand. Especially since I’m a little more then slighly lactose intolerant , I break out in rashes/have weird stomach issues etc. But I’m still eating a TON of milk products and I’m having a hard time stopping. I can’t figure out what my body is telling me – do I need carbs, protein, calcium – what?

Another baffling occurance is that I’m having a really hard time eating veggies recently. That’s right – this is coming from me – a girl who used to live of practically nothing but fruits and veggies.  It’s not even  a mental thing as much as it is a physical thing – because vegetables are one of the hardest things for me to eat right now . And fruits (other then banana’s) aren’t that much easier.  And again I can’t wrap my head around it.

Thankfully due to this bad boy – my week hasn’t been entirely veggie void. I ate the entire thing by myself in the course of 3-4 days. And that was ONLY due to the very high fiber content. What can I say – I love squash 😛

 

 

But what I am craving are sweets. Seriously –  I used to be more of a savory girl but now I see to have turned around 360 degrees and become a major sweet tooth.  It’s like I would almost make every meal sweet if I could. I’m trying to do my best not to overthink it and just to roll with it – and maintain a balance between “healthy” sweets and regular treats. It took me a while to get used this “new me”, but I soon realized the more I fought of these cravings – the stronger they would get. So in the end, it’s better I just relax,  and go with it.

An example of me balancing treats with healthy – pre-bought oatmeal cookies with PB

I’m at a funny place right now in my recovery.  I have lots of voices telling me to throw all caution to the wind and let go of all rules and just eat. Problem is I might just end up eating yogurt, banana’s and chocolate for breakfast lunch and dinner if I do that. So another part of me wants to stick to some rational guidlines and even force myself to do some things sometimes (like eat my vegetables) because it’s healthy and important for my body. At this point I don’t really know what’s the right thing to do.

Also, I’m having a hard time finding time to eat proper meals – which might tie into my crazy sweet cravings. I just feel that eating/cooking is such a waste of time – I much prefer to just grab and go then have to spend tons of time cooking, preparing my meals. I know just a little ahead of time prep work would eliminate this problem – but I’m still faced with trying to find a 15 minute block of time to eat my food in. These days it’s been more on the mini meal/snack side then the 3 square meals with snacks thrown in between. And at this point I’m not sure which works better.

Most of my meals look like this (not very pretty I know) a mix up of all I can find already ready in the fridge. This combination – eggs, green beans, chickpeas, potatoes, ketchup

But on a high note – here is some progress I’ve made recently:

– Letting go more of food rules and allowing myself more “treats”  (who said 2 biscuits or a few squares of chocolate every night is bad?)

– Not worrying about calories and fat in food (hello peanut butter and full fat dairy products)

– Eating a substantial night snack every night (this one still bothers me at times – because I never used to be a  night snacking type of person. But my body needs it now more then every – so I’m gonna roll with it)

– Gaining weight. After a long point of stagnation things are heading in the right direction. And I’ m very happy about that 🙂

 

Alright, enough late night ramblings from me. Any ideas about my crazy sugar/dairy cravings and vegetable aversion? Anyone experience  anything like this?

This week is gonna be really go-go-go from here on out -so I might not have a bunch of time on blog world. But I’m looking forward to seeing you all next week.

 

News and views

Anyone still out there?

So sorry about going MIA for so long. It’s funny because I’ve been planning to write a post every night since monday – but between being sick (thanks cold autumn weather!), working till 9 PM at work and then coming home to study/prepare a presentation for next week and trying to get to bed before midnight I just haven’t had the mental power to sit down and write anything coherently. But I’m here now, so that counts for something right?

Loving classes right now. Although I only study on the weekend, all my subjects look like they’re going to be something I enjoy (except for biochem, but let’s just try not to get into that too much). It’s really crazy studying part time, because it’s 5 AM to 9 PM – but at the same time I feel it’s really worth it and that this year I’m actually learning something useful as opposed to stuffing my head with information just for the sake of it –  you know what I’m saying.

Less positive news – major IBS flare ups. Probably since it’s very stress related it has to do with school starting up again, having an irratic eating schedule, things picking up at work etc. Seriously, I think I haven’t eaten a warm home cooked meal this week, because of all the craziness. There’s also been a few days the flare ups have been so bad, that I had a hard time eating or drinking anything.

I decided to go on the FODMAPS diet to see if the symptoms go away – at least somewhat. I have a hard time with diets that are so restrictive -since I don’t have time or ingredients to do a lot of fancy prep-work for my meals, and eating PB and rice cakes and eggs gets a little old after a while (not that that’s all I eat – but you get the picture, no?).  So I tried to more or less stick to it for a few days, and the symptoms lessened somewhat. What has made a big difference so far has been me cutting bread and wheat out of my diet and eating more or less gluten free – maybe there’s some intolerance there?

Still, not sure I want to commit to this diet 100%. For one, it’s very rigoristic and there are things on there I know I can tolerate in smaller amounts, and things that I’m learning bother me or trigger symptoms. Also just because of where I’m coming from I have to be very cautious about elimination diets and make sure I’m getting the right balance of nutrients and food groups and calorie neecds for my body.

I had a meeting with an RD today, and it was a bit of an eye opener for me. She told me a lot of things I already knew, but also highlighted some things I know about but I’m not so good about putting into practice (eating at set times, eating at least one home cooked meal a day, getting the right balance of certain food groups etc.). She wants to give me a weekly meal plan and see if that does anything to improve my issues. To be honest, I think it’s going to be hard to stick to a set plan, because I’m used to doing my own thing for so long – but I guess we’ll just see how it goes.  At this point I’m open to trying almost anything if it’ll get my body working how it should.

Ok, so that all from me for now, will leave you with some pics of the goodies I’ve been eating recently:

Not much varitety on the breakfast front – still lovin on quick cooking oat bran and cereal for really crazy mornings.

Been experimenting with some gluten free options in my meals :

Corn flour flat bread with eggs/cheese, beans and veggies (taken “to go”). Yeah, and the match was there because I didn’t have any toothpicks to hold my wrap together – hey you gotta do what you gotta do 😛

Millet, zucchini and chickpea salad

Snack plates – cooked zucchini, rice cake, cheese, chickpeas

And of course, there’s always at least some dessert in there somewhere:

Had some cheesecake yeasterday, my stomach hated me for it, but my taste buds loved me, so I guess it was 50/50

My sister bought me a mega pack of oatmeal cookies recently, so I’ve been working through those as well. I personally prefer them homemade, but with coffee these are pretty good.

Quick quiestion – have you ever been on an elimination diet of any kind?  Any thoughts/words of advice on the matter?

We all have a choice.

Happy monday everyone!

Hope you all had an enjoyable and relaxing weekend.

I had my first classes at uni – and to be honest I am kind of exhausted.  Not sure if it’s from getting up at 5:00 AM and arriving home at 8:00 PM or the nearly non-stop classes I have nearly 11 hours straight , but whatever it is – it takes it’s toll on you.

Starting this new year I feel a mixture of nervousness and exitment. I’m enjoying almost all my classes so far (except for bio-chem which is freaking me out more then just a little bit) but it’s also going to be a bunch of work. I know that last semester I didn’t manage the stress so well and ended up with a near nervous breakdown and severely damaged my health to boot. But this year I’m determined to do better.

One thing I’m coming to realize more and more is that we may not choose what happens to us – but we can always choose how we react to what happens to us. I used to be really big on blaming my situation for my physical and mental state of being. I wouldn’t do this out loud of course, but somewhere in my subconcious I justified my actions and wrong choiced because I was faced with “difficult circumstances”.

Let’s give an example. Over the summer someone very close to me went though a severe bout of depression.  Although I fought to continue on with my good habits and take good care of myself – I found this persons behaviour very triggering. I felt helpless that I wasn’t able to help and guilty because I felt it must be somehow my fault. I often used my situation as an excuse not to push myself as hard as I should have. I felt like “well I can handly be expected to be in this situation and not be affected by it. Not only do I have to carry my own burdens – but I have the responsibility of taking care of my family as well. So if I don’t push myself (in recovery) as far as I should, it’s really not my fault or my choice”.

I’ve come to realize that nothing could be further from the truth. No, I don’t have control over the situation, but I can control the way I react to this situation. I ALWAYS have a choice.

Life is full of stress, unpleasent situations, difficult relationships and hard times. This might sound pessimistic- but it’s the truth. So if you’re waiting for the perfect situation to recover, or be happy, or push towards your goals (whatever they may be), you’re in for a LONG wait. In fact, chances are you’ll spend your whole life waiting for “just the right moment” and never get anywhere.

Happiness is a choice we make each day. Every day when we wake up in the morning we determine how our day will go. If we choose to be happy, we will be. Sure our plans might mess up, we might have personality clashes with people, bad things might happen. But our ATTITUDE is ultimatly what will determine the outcome of our day.

Recovery is a choice we make each day. No matter what challanges we face we can choose to ignore those pesky little voices in our heads, or defy those bad habits – or we can give into them. No one can make us go one way or the other, no set of circustances can be ultimatly to blame – the choice is ours.

Pursuing our goals is a choice we make. If you’re determined enough you can be or do anything – no matter what lies ahead of you (here’s some living proof if you think otherwise). If you decide that you want something no matter what, you’ll be able to handle whatever obstacles life throws at you – because in your mind you’ve already acheived your goals.

So no more excuses for me – no more using stress, a difficult finantial situations or complicated home life to justify backing out of my commitments. I’m going to keep fighting and moving ahead no matter what – and I am going to acheive my dreams and goals and be happy and healthy while I’m at it.

Today I choose happiness, health and to live a fullfilling and meaningful life. What’s your choice?

What is a big challange you conquered or goal you acheived during your life?

 

What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger – the problem is not letting it kill you.

I probably shouldn’t be posting right now, as I have a to-do list higher then the eiffle tower and it doesn’t seem to be coming down any time soon.

The truth is I’m feeling more then a little bit stressed right now:

Unfortuntaly, I don’t look this cute while I’m at it.

Exam period is stressfull for everyone, no doubt about it.  But for me, no matter how much I study, I never feel ready. I read and read and read till my head hurts, but it seems like nothing is sticking – and it’s freaking me out just a little.

But worse then the stress itself, is the way by body reacts to it –  I’m in constant pain right now – headaches from the minute I get up to the minute I lie down. And then the stomach pain is absolutely unbearable.  Yet I still try to force myself to eat – which also causes stress because I’m trying to figure out what to eat that won’t leave me suffering for several hours afterwards.  Which in turn makes my stomach hurt, which greatly hinders my studying, which in turn makes me stress even more about having to eat again –  and the cycle continues

As much as ensure is horrible tasting stuff – it seems to be the only thing my body can handle right now without freaking out. Since I have 3 weeks ahead of me, I think I’d better look into some healthy smoothie recipies as replacments.

All the old coping mechanisms are just begging to be used. The only time I feel calm is when I’m hungry, or being active. But exercise is not such a good idea for me right now – as much as I’m dying to do it, and we all know that in order for your brain to function properly you need glucose. So I’m trying my best to do the right thing, but it’s REALLY hard.

And as hard as I’m trying to get a grip on the situation – I just can’t. I can’t eat properly, I can’t sleep properly, I can’t seem to relax. I know that studies shouldn’t be THAT important to me – so why all the stress?

Maybe it’s because I feel like right now being a good student is the only thing to define me, that makes me worthy of being alive (gosh that sounds horrible typed up). Maybe  it’s because right now I hate my body, I’m not too happy with my life  either, I feel very much alone and alienated from my friends. The only thing I feel good about are my grades – and if that goes what do I have left?

They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger – but not letting it kill you is sometimes the problem. I hope I have it in me to make it through this busy time ok, and still find some enjoyment along the way.

I found this cartoon hillarious, because these are the two things I am definitely NOT doing enough of lately:

How do you cope with stress?

Are you one of those people (like me) that totally loses their appetite when under stress?  How (and what) do you find it easiest to eat? (For me personally the only thing that sounds good most of the time are smoothies, sweet yogurts and snack foods – hard to eat that and keep it healthy and balanced though :P)

Lunch time epiphanies

I had a funny epiphany when making lunch the other day.

I have this funny thing about walking into the kitchen when making a meal and feeling utterly and totally lost – there’s just too many options. But today I knew one thing for sure, I had a hot, fresh roll that needed to be used. So I went with my classic cottage cheese and tomato – and to try something new I had a the jam and egg combo (I’ve seen some people do it, so I wanted to see what it was all about).

I actually ended up switching everything around after taking the picture. The jam and egg combo was ok, but not great. So was the savory cottage cheese combo. I realized a few bites into the meal that what I really wanted was the other way around – cottage cheese with blackberry jam and scrambled egg with tomatoes. I finished my meal feeling full, but not really satisfied,; almost cheated in a way – because I had all the components needed to make something I really enjoyed, yet I missed the mark somewhere along the way.

It made me think about my life right now, because that mirrors my feelings about it to a tee. I truly enjoy studying, learning; but I also enjoy working and taking active part in other things. And I seem to be struggling to find a balance, to find what I really want to do. Somewhere along the way I lost the ability to enjoy the little things that life brings, I hardly know what fun means anymore. I’m going through life surviving, without really living. And it’s not making me happy, and it’s not the way life should be

Exam period is up ahead, but after that I really need to take stock of where I need to change. My life, like my lunch, has all the components needed for me to feel happy and fulfilled. I just need to find a way to put them together and make them work for me.

Have you had any epiphanies recently?