Back in August, I talked about the challenges I try to tackle every month. I was going to finish out the month-and continue into September-with running, with the goal of a 5k in October. October’s challenge would be starting every day with a green smoothie(and hopefully continuing with the running). Both of these would be in the interest of becoming healthier, as I have felt for a long time that there is more that I need to be doing on that front.
So, how did they turn out? What are my plans for November?
Well, neither turned out…yet Shortly after I started running, my heart started acting up. After talking to my doctor(Yes, I know I should have done that before starting to run.), I was told to take a break and to start taking a multivitamin. Once things settled, and the vitamins had a chance to do their stuff, I could probably start again. Before that time period was up, I ended up having more things come up in my life that I felt were challenging enough, without needing to add to them.
Now we’re into November. The general busyness of October, and many of my additional troubles, have passed, and things seem to have crept back down to a manageable level. I am now in the position of needing to make a decision.
Where do I go from here?
Those two challenges are both very beneficial, and I would love to give them a go again. I’m thinking I may switch around the order a bit, though, working on diet first, then exercise. This time, my first step for my diet is going to be to get rid of gluten. This is something I’ve done off and on since Buddy Roo was born, as he seems to have an intolerance to it. Since I’m still nursing him, my diet affects him directly, which makes this a higher priority.
This is not my first time being strictly gluten free, I did it with Little Bug, as well. She had many sensitivities, and I was on a very restricted diet with her. However, as restricted as it was, it was also easier with her, for multiple reasons. First of all, we lived in Alaska, which meant we weren’t near family and didn’t travel often(Well, I didn’t, anyway). We also had a group of like-minded(or at least open-minded) and supportive friends, so the temptations just weren’t there. Little Bug was also very sensitive, and would be in a fair amount of pain when I deviated from the diet. Now, we live much closer to family, and travel to visit them often. Being on the road makes it very difficult to stick with the diet, especially when you’re in the midwest. Little Bug is also now included in our meals, and has outgrown her sensitivities. The result was that, with Buddy Roo, I gave up the strict dairy avoidance very early on, and gluten wasn’t too far behind.
Here’s the thing, though, whenever I’m on that diet I feel amazing. I have energy, my mind feels clear, my memory is better…I’m just a much better me. So why isn’t this enough? Why is it so easy for me to slip “off the wagon” and start eating cheese and bread, and drinking full dairy mochas and beer? How can I get around these cravings and get back to a way of eating that makes me feel good?
This is where I think my monthly challenges will serve me well. I am going to take this one step at a time; doing one goal, one month at a time. Since we’re headed into the holiday season, gluten certainly won’t be an easy thing to give up. Travel and large family meals will make for a definite challenge, indeed. However, I think that if I can make it through Thanksgiving, Solstice, and Christmas without gluten, I will be far less likely to fall back into my old ways.
Other goals will be to greatly reduce the amount of dairy I take in, as well as sugar, and to greatly increase my water and vegetable intake. For November, though, it’s all about being gluten free. If I improve the others, great, but I’ll keep my focus on just the one goal.
Are any of you gluten free? What are your favorite recipes?