Trying to improve my overall health is not a straight line from less desirable healthy to healthy. Nor is it as simple as eat less, move more. While I have been taking many positive steps in the right direction – daily exercise, more mindful eating, getting my doc to agree to eliminating fast insulin and let me go it alone on oral meds for now – I still recognize a very long and winding road ahead of me. After more than 30 days straight of going to the gym to practice the routines J develops for me, I feel as if that’s a habit. A relatively new habit, but an established pattern of behavior nonetheless. Time to address the next big thing – diet and eating.
J so graciously offered to discuss this topic with me in more detail than we have touched upon thus far, and I, needing all the help I can get, eagerly agreed. We began with a series of books he uploaded for me to read, and I am started the first on Friday night. More beneficial homework, and I am determined to be a successful student in this regard. If he is willing to invest the time to share his philosophy, I am willing to listen and evaluate.
Into this new project I had an unusual occurrence yesterday – midafternoon blood sugar crash. I had the typical symptoms of sudden overheating, fatigue, and the malaise I associate with this type of drop. But because before that only happened to me when I was injecting insulin, I figured it was more the opposite, that my sugar was spiking. But no, that 54 reading said I needed to get something in my system immediately.
We were out and about – Saturday choring errands – and we could either continue to the mall where we were heading and its terribly less healthy food court or we could turn around around and drive home for something else. I opted to keep going with a small portion of almonds left in the glove compartment from the last time this happened to me.
A single McDonald’s cheeseburger and unsweetened tea later and I was pretty much back to normal to finish our errands. Just when I think I have things mostly under control, something like that happens that throws me for another loop.
M suggested I had eaten too little over the course the day, but in truth I ate the same things I always eat the other 6 days of the week. Same breakfast, workout, protein shake, turkey and cheese sandwich, small salad, water, water, water. I’m trying very hard not to snack between meals. Then he asked about my workout, and no, it did not seem more stressful than normal. I am working toward on the dumbbell movements right now along with other basics routines. Only the chores were new, and maybe moving furniture on top of the daily practice was enough to push me over the edge and into sugar deficit.
M then returns to a favorite theme – I need to eat more protein. Knowing he was skirting toward unhappy wife territory, he left it there. I am aware I should eat more protein. I am aware my stress-puppy lifestyle tends to wreak havoc with my diet and eating habits. We are both also aware that I prefer to keep my husband and my nutrition coach as separate professions, and there is a fine line between being supportive, disagreeing with other advice I might be exposed to, and allowing me to discover and make my own mistakes without a lecture. This is familiar ground we have covered and do not wish to revisit, and I overhear enough of his advice to his friends and other trail runners to know his thoughts and opinions on the subject. When I was in high school my tennis coach told us that it’s difficult for some couples to play doubles together, because of differing training and competition styles. I now know exactly what he meant.
At the end of yesterday, wiped out from clearing my domestic to-do agenda and the unevenness of my energy, my final thought before I fell asleep is that I need to read faster. Sometimes it feels as if I am back in college yet again and studying like crazy and living in fear of the pop quiz when I am least prepared and expecting it.
So I spent an afternoon on the couch reading, making notes … while baking chocolate chip cookies (and no, I have no plans to consume any of the sugary goodness presently cooling in my kitchen and giving me a sugar high from the smell). I swear this improving my overall health is akin to yet another job. But it’s the most important of the ones I already have.
Fresh baked cookies anyone? I have with and without chopped pecans ….