I've finally done it.
I have been thinking about this for years. I've always known the answers, I was just too lazy to follow through. Fourteen days ago I really did it. I changed the way I eat... for good. My last trip to the doctor was not a pleasant one. I have been carrying around an extra 50-60 pounds since I had kids (Sammy will turn 18 years old in 2011!) I had made no real progress on my weight loss goal, even with my pre-diabetes diagnosis three years ago. I had not fulfilled my commitment to exercise. I was paying little to no attention to my blood sugars and blood pressure. I was relying on medication to do the work I needed to be doing for myself. I was going to bed every night feeling bloated and downing the antacids. Blaming things on bad genetics and a weak metabolism wasn't getting me anywhere. I could see my future and it wasn't pretty.
When it comes to diets, there are just so many and they do all work if you stick with them, at least temporarily. I have been on many, many diets. What I didn't want to do this time around was start another fad diet or become dependent on food someone else was preparing for me (unless it was my own personal chef... which I cannot afford, of course.)
I decided to lay down 10 basic eating rules to start and stick with them:
1) Keep track of every single thing I eat, every day
2) 8-10 glasses of water a day, without fail
3) Eat a healthy breakfast within 20 minutes of waking up in the morning (this is really important to me as my morning blood sugar readings are the only high ones... meaning my body is not functioning properly during the overnight fasting period, so the quicker I can get the fuel in in the morning, the better)
4) No refined sugars or flours, period. (this is huge for me, huge!)
5) A minimum 30g of fiber every single day
6) A maximum 1200 calories per day until I earn more with proper exercise
7) A maximum 30 fat grams per day
8) A maximum of 1800mg of salt per day
9) No red meat and at least three vegetarian days a week and no eating after dinner (or after 8:30pm)
10) Maximum one weigh-in per week (although weight is important, eating healthy is the most important part of my new lifestyle, so no more obsessing about the scale)
I found a great website called Calorie Count. I add my foods in and it keeps track of the balance of carbs/proteins/fats as well as nutrients & vitamins. I get a letter grade every day representing how well I did. The over achiever in me loves that! So far, straight A's!
Other than having to look the doctor in the face... again... and explain how I had failed miserably since my last blood tests, I really do not know what has come over me. It is like someone whispered in my ear while I was sleeping, you can do it, you can do it, you want to be healthy... it is the most important thing to you. Just do it!
I am really excited about how great I feel. The house is filled with lots of yummy things like Steel Cut Oats, Fiber Cereal, Homemade Split Pea Soup, Black beans soaked and cooked myself with no added salt and just lots of great flavor, fresh organic fruit (unfortunately for now the fruit has to travel from California as the weather in the Pacific NW has been miserable), non-fat greek yogurt, 100% whole grains, broccoli, spinach...
And speaking of dark, leafy greens...
our farm share started up again last weekend. This year we decided to split our share with the Ruby family and so this was our first week back out at the farm.
This week's share includes:
2 heads of Butter Crunch Lettuce, 1 bunch Arugula, 1 bunch Spinach, 1 Leek, 2 Shallots, 1 bunch Kale, 1 bunch Swiss Chard and Sprouting Broccoli
I'll keep on sharing yummy recipes. I have a delicious vegetarian cannellini bean soup planned for the leeks and fresh greens.
Soon I will be tackling my exercise demons... wish me luck! I feel great!!!