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Too Much of a Good Thing

I’ve met with the registered dietician on Friday. This was our second meet up after a consultation with her last month to see if we would be a good fit. She is a registered dietician and nutritionalist who also has a focus on endocrine and kidney disorders (Hello Hypoparathyroidism!). After our first meet and greet, we thought food tracking might be beneficial as it is hard to really make changes until you know what needs to be changed. Seems resonable!

So tracking I have tried to do. I even bought a year of myfitnesspal as a motivator. Now tracking is NOT hard because they really do make it easy. What is hard is telling yourself that you will track something later and then not doing so. Then the days where you know you are going to eat like a High School wrestler hoping to bulk up for his weight class. I have not been perfect but I have been fairly constent and as with everything in my life, I am trying to do better

Here is to trying to do better!

One thing that was very obvious is that I am not eating enough protein. Now for kidney issues, I am really supposed to avoid animal proteins which as a pescatarian I was already doing. That being said, plant based proteins are important especially when trying to create an exercise routine with good muscle recovery….

My bad.

Another thing that became VERY obvious is that I am eating way, way, way too many carbohydrates. Let me just say way one more time. Let’s admit it though. Carbs are tasty. Carbs are easy to grab on the go. Plus not all carbs are bad, but too many carbs is still too many carbs especially when not paired properly.

Case in point a random day in September where I tracked my whole day.

Not necessarily hitting my targets. Sometimes even when we think we are eating heatlhy, overal we are not getting all we need or too much of what we need. In talking with the dietician, it became apparant that there is too much of a good thing. Such as my morning smoothie. I was going with the add as much fruit as possible which is not really the way to go.

Sonal, dietician, asked me; “If you had to sit down to eat everything that you put in your smoothie for one meal, could you?”

The answer was a resounding no. The baker in me loves creating and I was using my smoothies for an outlet, but it really was too much. I am normally a too much kind of person. Lol. She suggested limiting the smoothie to 2 fruits taking into account the could I eat it all in one sitting mantra. Also making sure to add some protein to the smoothie in the form of a powder or food source (chia seeds, nut butters). Also adding some filling fiber such as oats, flax seeds and spinach. I can work with that! Kind of have been doing it, but in an over the top way.

Sometimes less is more of what we need and I’m trying to remember that.

While this morning smoothie was carb heavy, I also knew that it would be followed by a long bike ride and run. But it was also a good balance of protein and fiber. Balance.

Just Doing My Best

I wake up tired.

I am tired all day.

I fall asleep on the couch…..tired

I don’t always sleep well in bed though.

Could be age. You know having to get up for the bathroom.

Could be damn Cpap machine that gurgles, hisses and is stuck on my head.

Could be the hypopara muscle aches and all the fun that goes with it.

Could be mind spinning and spinning.

Who knows. Sleep is a mysterious thing which is why I assume there are so many books about it. That being said, all this tiredness makes for an unmotivated not moving as much as I should be person.. All I know is that I am not alone in my struggle. The struggle is real and so many of us go through it.

i will be honest too…… Staying on track is hard. Staying motivated may be even harder. The why bother it never works devil is real. The does it really make a difference voice is loud. The does it even matter whispers are shouts. What is the point is the biggest struggle. Round and round and round it goes till you are paralysed into doing nothing.

nothing.

nothing

nothing.

No plan.

No blogging to keep yourself honest.

No coming up with goals but finding so many excuses.

Now here me out……… Some of these “excuses” are vaild. Many of them are real making what feels like an impossible situation like climbing a mountain without gear. I often forget though…..

I can do hard things!

I have done hard things.

Now the question I have to seriously start asking though…….

Do I want to do them?

What is the benefit of doing them? What is the detriment of not doing them? And the absolute hardest question….. Why am I afraid of doing them? Of making a plan…… of sticking to it…. Of being willing to falter….. of doing something even if I am the only one who cares that I am doing it?

The truth boils down to….. Fear of failure. Fear of stating that something I strive for might be out of reach…. We don’t stop growing because we fail, we stop growing because we stop trying.

I, once again, might be ready to face reality and try. There are some truths to. I have medical condition that makes trying harder some days them others. I am a home baker. There will be snacks but I can adjust. I am a middle age woman with the metabolism of a dead person. I need to move more and make excuses. I need to at the very least try.

Goal #1

I need to eat healthier.

Goal # 2

I need to move in a more constent manner and come up with a plan.

Goal # 3

I need to make myself accountable. For me that will mean documenting it all. The struggles. The small (and hopefully) big victories and just be real that it isn’t always going to work. So I need to adjust and not give up.

While this morning, I did weigh myself and take measurements, weight is not the goal. More importantly, the numbers that I need to improve…. Cholesterol, calcium, kidney function and the rest will work itself out.

so here is to trying!

Getting it done!!!!

Today I finished a Sprint Triathlon that I’ve been loosely training for but steady enough that I felt confident that it was enough. This was not the race that I envisioned but was definitely the one I should have expected for several reasons…. Training being a key one.

I have been swimming. I have been biking. I have been running. I just might not have been doing enough nor did I do enough brick type workouts. I also realized that I never did one that incorporated swimming.

Here is the breakdown

Weather was literally picture perfect. Not to hot. Not to cold. Seriously just right.

The water looked calm to me, but that might have been because previous tri’s had extremely choppy waters. No wicked white caps of the past. To me it looked calm but hubby thought it looked choppy. Eye of the beholder I guess. Water temp was also perfect. Not shocking to walk in. So I got in the water feeling confident. Right up until I put my face in the murky water and a womans foot was kicking towards me. Luckily she did not connect. Then at the same time, a woman next to me started yelling “lifeguard. I need a lifeguard.” Then she was like “nevermind, I’m ok.” She may have been but I wasn’t. It really freaked me out and the rest of the swim was not so much a swim with all swim training going out the window, but an I’ve got to keep my head above water so I can keep saying WTF, WTF, WTF. I did no breaststroke. No butterfly. No backstroke. I ended up doing a combo of doggy paddle, sidestroke, and flailing in the water. I think lifeguards might have notice my non swimming swim as I noted one that seemed to follow me on his paddle board and then as I got clost to end was like “you’ve got this.” Lol

And I did….. Pulled myself out of the water. EXHAUSTED as I did not have a smart swim that didn’t expel a lot of energy. Shockingly I was 10:57 which I would have sworn was at least 20.

Get myself into transition and my head is not on straight. I am not thinking straight. I am exhausted. I am just thinking, put shoes on and go. Forget to put water on bike that had calcium in it (mistake). Don’t’ drink anything since I think I have my waterThrow a couple of jelly beans in my mouth and off I go. (1:04)

Almost immediately I feel how dead my legs are and the how exhuasted I am from swim. My lips start to tingle. I am just on autopilot. While biking, I did NOT pass one person but continuously heard “on your left.” To be honest during first lap, I thought I would not finish. I was contemplating stopping, But I didn’t. I just kept peddling and going. The volunteer at the turn around was saying, “slow down turn ahead.” I told him that if I slowed down anymore, I would be stopped. He said, “your are moving faster than those sitting at home.” So I kept going. 3rd and final loop, a 67 year old woman Kathy rode with me for a bit and we chatted. Then she passed me but I kept her in site. I made it to the finish of the bike as the last rider in making the elites look like elites. (1:07:43)

This time in Transition I remembered to drink some gaterade and more importantly talk some of calcium and my calcitriol. Contemplated stopping to use bathroom but figured if I stopped, I would never start. So off I went. (2:08)

With jello legs, I left for the “run.” Although I might actually call this a walk with purpose with short sprints of a run like you do when in a crosswalk and a car is coming. At this point, I knew no matter what, I would get to finish line. Part of me felt like I should push, but the part of the brain that deal with reality won out. There was no need to push myself to the point where it wouldn’t be good. This was not the day for that.

The last mile, I reconnected with Kathy and shadow followed her for a bit. We reconnected the last leg and walked for a bit. Then when we neared the finish, we ran. She asked if I wanted last or second to last as we were last on the course. I said, I would take pride in being last. We crossed the finish line together and hugged at the end. It was perfect! (44:22)

2:06:12

I seriously take pride in finishing. Done is done and that is all that matters!

Holding Yourself Back

In trying to figure out. Trying to come up with a plan. Trying to put the pieces together when I always feel like one is missing. Trying… Trying… Trying……One day I might know until then, keep working on –

How to move forward….

How to get back and stay on track…. (Does anyone ever stay on track?).

How to reach goals that I have been putting off setting….. ( Because if you set a goal, then that means you have to make a plan. If you make a plan, then you need to be accountable for following that plan)

I realized something…….. Once again, I was putting myself in a holding pattern.

Hear me out……..

I realize that once again I’ve been living in fear. I’ve been waiting for the shoe to drop. Funny thing is once started to drop, I realized that while there is a lot that I have no control of that by pretending the future is now that I am missing the present.

Point one…..

When you have Hypoparathyroidism, you have to usually take boat loads of calcium, prescription forms of Vitamin D on top of other things. Anywho…. As I’ve mentioned before, this is hard on the body. Kidneys especially. I’ve had high levels of calcium in urine which is not good. I’ve had some things indicating that maybe this was heading where I didn’t want it to go. I’ve also been lucky not to have had kidney stones and other issues, but it was always there in back of my mind.

Waiting

Waiting

Waiting

Get some results back and shows that my eGFR rate is dropping. 2 years after being Hypopara it was 73 (still in normal range) but enough that I worried about my kidney health which made me feel like I was being a hypochondriac. Guess I wasn’t because now 6 years in my eGFR has continued to drop 56 which is out of normal range and indicates that kidneys are not working properly otherwise known as CKD. As a side note, for a woman my age it should be in 90’s. So not great but not as bad as it could be!

Now the thing is doctors don’t seem overly concerned at this stage, but I am. You know, you only have one body thing. Also might be reason to switch to a nephrologist who doesn’t wait for things to get bad before thinking it’s a big deal. Anyway, these numbers while not great also were the wake up call that I needed to realize that…..

EVERYTHING IS NOT OUT OF MY HANDS!

  1. Being overweight is not good for many things including kidney health. Now, there was a time when I could say that my extra weight wasn’t effecting my health and at the time that was true; but that is no longer the case.
  2. My nutrition could be better. I’m not talking about nutrition to loose weight. I am talking about making sure that I am eating the right foods. Getting the right proteins, carbs, healthy fats.
  3. There might come a day where I can’t do the things that I want, but I am not even close to being there now or in the near future!

so what to do….. what to do……

Well one and two go together. While I’ve met in the past with a functional nutritionist , this time I wanted to meet with someone who focused on kidney health. I found a Registered Dietitian with all the right credentials who among other things works with endocrine, kidney and weight loss issues. (All the boxes and then some checked).

I could (not easily) go on a diet to loose weight but if it is not the right diet for my health than loosing the weight means nothing. Last time I dropped a decent amount of weight it was between son 2 & 3. I did it with the South Beach Diet which is very much not the type of diet I should use now. My goal is not so much the weight loss but finding the right diet for kidneys and hypoparathyroidism. Loosing 20 pounds would be the bonus and one I am now actively working on.

My goal though is to change my numbers around as it’s early enough to do that and if I can’t turn them around, slow them the (beep) down!

So with all of that weighing on my mind, I’ve been acting like I am already at the point where I can’t run anymore. Now that’s just crazy talk…… Like Serious crazy talk……. Maybe…. Maybe…. Maybe….. one day, but not yet.

Now I know that just with Hypopara, my running has changed but I’ve been getting it done. I’ve been doing what I can but I’ve been holding back because I was waiting for what I don’t know. Kind of like when you put off cleaning out your closet because you just don’t want to deal with it. Then you realize that once you start tackling it, it’s not so bad.

So it’s not so bad!

Plus I’ve been training for my triathlon. I’m not trained trained. I feel like I never am anymore. What I am is trained enough to know that I will make it out of the water and still be able to bike and while not run, will be able to at least walk to the finish line.

oh did I mention that event is 12 days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Load is Heavy

This post is for my Hypopara friends……

For those of us who have been waiting and waiting and waiting….. and yet again waiting for them to resolve the Natpara issue, this last week was a kick in the gut.

For those of you who have never heard of Natapara, I will give you a very brief unscientific explanation. For those of us who live with Hyopara (Hyparathyroidism), it a nutshell it means our parathyroid glands do not work or work properly. Never heard of a parathyroid? Well that’s because it is one of those things that the body usually never has a problem with. Most (not all) of us came to the Hypopara world due to a problem with thyroid surgery where the parathyroid glands (there are 4) were damaged. At least that’s how I got here. Your parathyroid glands produce a hormone that is responsible for helping your body regulate calcium levels. Not a big deal you think, until you look at this chart.

Anywho……

For a brief moment, all of this was secondary because I got to be on Natpara, a daily injection of the synthetic parathyroid hormone. I was on it for a blip before it got recalled. My body worked the way it was supposed to work without a barrage of pills, self checks and symptoms. I also no longer worried about my kidneys since all levels than were in normal range. Then for reasons that really don’t make sense, this option was taken away. When I say doesn’t make sense it is because it is still available in others parts of the world, just not in the US. So back to daily routine.

Whatever……

As the saying though goes though….. Just because I carry it well does not mean the load is not heavy. It is heavy. Sometimes you get so used to carrying the heavy load that you forget it is there, but it is always there. You stop really speaking about it because you just do what you need to do and even those in your circle don’t see the struggles. Always lurking. Waiting to remind you that it is there. It is those moments that are frustrating. I also know that I am lucky because even with my Hypoparthyrioidism I am able to accomplish and do so much.

But for now, I know that many in the Hypopara community have no choice but to keep carrying our heavy load because we all got notified that Natpara is not coming back. It makes no sense to know that there is something out there that will take away the symptoms, help to protect kidneys because we were no longer taking high doses of calcitrol and calcium, where your face doesn’t start to tingle telling you that your calcium is dropping (that’s what mine does but everyone is different), your feet uncontrollable cramp up, or have muscle spasms in legs. Just sitting here waiting for the other shoe to drop as you deal with the life of hypopara……… because in the end

What choice do we have

especially when the only viable one was taken from us.

Pulled this one Out of Nowhere

So today, I ran the NYC Half. You wouldn’t know about that because I’ve been a little absentee with both updating my blog and my training. My goal is to try and do better with both.

As far as training goes, I followed no plan. I didn’t run nearly as much as I should have especially if I had followed a plan which fell through the cracks. In February, I did mostly 3 mile runs and this month, mostly 2. Then I did one 8 mile run and one 10. I would like to say that I was offsetting that non running with cross training, but that would be a lie. So the race was going to be what the race was going to be.

Got to say, for lack of training, not having a plan, and just overall preparation; I really pulled this out of nowhere.

100% I should not have had the race I had today, but I had a great race. So I will take it. I won’t knock it. I won’t question it with the exception of questioning what I might be able to accomplish if I actually trained:) My goal today was to run a smart race and I feel that I did.

For my Hypopara friends, running a smart race meant making sure that I paid attention and added my calcium BEFORE I would need it which I knew from last years marathon training. I also adjusted my doses today. Normally I take .25 Calcitriol in morning with my pills. This morning I took .50 with my normal calcium amount. Then on the course around mile 5.5, I added 1,000 mg of calcium and 25 mcg of Vitamin D. It add them to my water, so it forces me to continue to hydrate. Post race, I took another of my normal dose of Calcitriol and calcium. Overall, this made for a good day. I am lucky that I had last years marathon training to fall back on to know what I would need when. So I don’t necessarily recommend doing this without training for this reason alone.

As far everything else goes, I feel like everything fell into place. The weather was perfect. Picture perfect. Great day to run. Blue skies. Slight breezes. Sunny and in the low 60’s. I could have done with 5 degree lower but that would just be greedy to ask for that. Therefore, I will go with picture perfect.

My goal was to run a smart pace which meant watching the pace and keeping it in check. I walked when I wanted which most definitely was the bridges and maybe a little more than I should have, but again I was watching average pace as well as running pace. I knew from my whopping two long runs, that if I kept the pace in check I would feel good and would be able to get to the finish feeling comfortable. So that’s what I did. Once I got to mile 11, I pushed a little harder which made me need to walk but by mile 12 I knew I was pushing when I got a stitch in my side. Well it’s not a race if you don’t push:) My average pace according to my Garmin was 12:34 which really is the sweet spot for me right now. That being said I did push enough that my best pace was 8:36. So there’s that:) Overall my I was running in zone 4 for most of the race which is just where I should be. I was at Zone 5 for the finish which is also where I should be for the finish.

Today was a great day for running. It makes me want to be better training for the Queens 10K to see what I can do and how far I can push (smartly…. always smartly)

Some people might think because I run marathons that I never suffer from issues from my Hypoparthyridism. They would be wrong. It just is part of the routine now.

Case in point

Claw hand

Yesterday, while cleaning kitchen. Not doing anything out of the ordinary. Unless you count really doing a deep clean. Hmmmm

I think the difference is that while running though, I really pay attention and adjust. During build up of the miles in my training for marathon, I pat attention to the signals. Monitoring when hands start to get tingly. Pay attention to how hard to push before adding more calcium. It is all so random to be honest and changes all the time. Things that always effect it though are temperatures when running, pace and how hard I’m pushing, time of day, time on feet, and really what the calcium Gods decide. At least that last one feels pretty accurate.

One thing that I realized during a training run is definitely extra calcium is required before mile 10. It is always better to keep the levels up than try to recover from when the hands start to tingle. During training if it was a longer run, I would make sure to take my morning dose of calcium and calcitriol before running. If it was a shorter run, I would take it as soon as I got home. If it was a LOOOONG training run, I might add extra calcium powder (Calez) to my water. If it was a hot day, I would do the same. Regardless though, I always kept a pack of the powder with me because some days I needed it and some days I didn’t, Really is a crap shoot.

On marathon day and the day before, I did some preparation. In eventing before the marathon, I took an extra dose of my Calcitriol because normally I aim to keep my blood calcium levels at just below or at the the low end of normal. So I didn’t want to go into the marathon with low calcium already. Then the morning of before I left at the super early hour of 6:00 AM, I took my morning dose which normally I don’t take until 10ish. Then I packed with me my normal meds but taking an extra dose with me as it was going to be a long and hard day. I wasn’t starting until 12:00, so I had to bob and weave before the bob and weaving actually began. So around 11:00 am or so, I took another dose of calcium and calcitriol which really would have been my normal time. Then I made sure to add Calez to one of my water bottles to have along the course. I saved another dose of my calcium, calcitriol and magnesium for when I finished. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.

I will say that I think for once I ran a smart race. It helped that I ran the first 16-17 miles with a friend. I think we kept each other in check. We ran paces that were sustainable. We ran smart. We also walked when needed but also encouraged each other to push ourselves to run. I ran a much smarter race when I was running with her. I would have loved to have run the whole thing with her, but we split up when she needed to stop for a bathroom pit stop. At that point, I really was afraid that if I stopped that it would be too hard to start up again. My legs were dead. My foot was hurting. Stopping was not an option for me unless I wanted to call it a day.

So I kept on going……

And going……

And going…..

At first I did not run as smart as I did when I was with Rosa, but I caught on to my stupidity. So I tried to run smarter. I walked more than I probably would have than if I was with her, but the pain was real.

But so was the joy….

The bottom line though was I still got where I wanted to get which was the finish line.

Yes, I know you’ve seen this photo before, but I do so love it.

Everyone who runs a marathon has hardships that they push through to get to the finish line. It wouldn’t be a marathon without it. This is just part of mine. Before becoming Hypopara, I didn’t have to take into account medications and added calcium, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t different challenges. As they say…….

If marathons were easy everyone would do them. I’m just too stubborn not to do what I have to do to get to the finish.

An Actual Running Post

So since this is supposed to be a running blog, I thought I would do something novel and actually talk about my running…. I know, shocking!!!

As you know my training for NYC Marathon has been all over the place. I started off great following my training plan right up until I didn’t. And while my training hasn’t been stellar with following the plan. I feel (especially after yesterday) that I have been doing ok.

You know the expression….. You do you

Well I have been doing me and it has been working. With all my issues both mentally and physically, I just started loosely following the plan and doing what I felt would work for me. Before all my issues, I’ve followed training plans to the letter T (what does that even mean?) with great results. The problem with cookie cutter plans is that when you are not the ”ideal” runner, they might not work for you. Even though I took that into consideration in the beginning, I took it to the next level recently. After yesterday, I would say it has worked for me.

What have I been doing?

Well not as much running as my plan has called for. On days where I had foundation runs, I might have done HITT, biking, combo of biking/running, or even yoga. Since my goal has never been about time, I really stopped worrying about training runs where I needed to hit certain paces/training zones. I would do the run my way. Once I got back on ”schedule” with my plan, my biggest thing was to make sure that I was getting in the miles for long runs which is really where I was lacking. Even then I needed to make sure not to jump my miles too quickly as I was behind. So I adjusted.

Having run multiple marathons, I also know what works for me in training and what doesn’t. I know runners who feel the need to run multiple 20 mile training runs for their marathons. I have done them and I know that for what ever reason they don’t work for me. I find them defeating. I find them hard in a way that is not good for me mentally going into an event. They just don’t work for me. I would much rather do 16 to 18 miles and then the next day do a few miles on tired legs. This works for me.

Now all that being said, yesterday I went out for my longest run this cycle and I started at noon which is about the time that I will be starting NYC. I wanted to see how my body would be at that time of day as normally I run right after I take my morning meds.

16 miles.

It went well. To be honest, it went MUCH better than I expected. I continued with the walking the first 3 miles as I ALWAYS start off too fast. Plus since being Hypopara it does seem to take my body a bit to warm up. Then my goal was to keep the pace in the mid 12’s. To keep it at a level that I felt that I could run more than walking. There was no walk/run time. There was just doing what I could. I found that if I paid attention to pace, ran the “slower” pace, and didn’t try to run something I can’t sustain that I could run. I could run without the need to walk. Now don’t get me wrong…. There was walking, but there was much more running.

In order to conserve my battery, I did the first 6 miles with no music. Just me and my thoughts. I am not a runner who minds being alone and it was nice. Maybe a little boring, but I reminded myself that NYC will not be boring. I normally do not listen to music on race day as I LOVE to listen to the crowds, the runners feet hitting pavement, and just taking it all in. Out alone in my town though it does get boring.

Holding back is what I realize that I need to do if I want to have a good day. Yes, I can run faster BUT I can not sustain those paces AND they are not good for my body or feet. As you can see, I kept a fairly steady pace. At the end though, I wanted to push it to see what I still had in the tank. You know the Finish Strong mentality. I pushed it to the point that my arms literally went numb (you know the feeling like you laid on them). It was a good training run both mentally and physically.

What I learned…… Starting later, I do need to adjust my calcium intake. At mile 10, I added Calez to my water for added calcium but maybe I should start earlier. I also need to add more as miles add up. Maybe even taking a calcitrol at some point during run. This is why my arms/hands went numb at the end. As soon as I finished my run yesterday, I came inside and popped 500 mg calcium and a .25 calcitriol as I felt a crash coming. This also may have been due to the faster pace at the end. Either way, I need to pay attention and adjust accordingly. One thing with calcium levels is that they fluctuate and you have to pay attention to the signs to adjust with them.

Another thing that I made a mistake on yesterday, but to me I think it was a beneficial mistake……. I forgot my bag of fuel. This time around, I have been trying not to use gels but more natural (ok still processed) food. Since I started at 12, I didn’t eat lunch. So I ate a protein bar before starting out. I had a bag of almonds and some bars with me. I left the bag on counter, so I only had one Nutrigrain bar for the entire run. I ate half at mile 6 and then finished off around mile 12. While not ideal, I view this as a win because just think of how much better my body will feel when properly fueled on course. Learning to run/push when the tank is literally empty is not a bad thing.

Recovery…….

When I came home, I stretched. I took added meds. I had a chocolate cake batter smoothie (Sadly no actual cake batter, but healthy proteins). Then I soaked in some epsom salt. Followed by the use of my foot massager. Overall recovery was good. Although I know that I did not replenish both water and nutrients enough. We ordered Thia food and I really couldn’t even eat much as I wasn’t hungry. Weird…. but I will do better today.

Today as I sit here typing, I feel good. I feel like I just ran 16 miles yesterday. My feet are sore, but normal sore. My legs are tired, but normal tired. I will do some restorative yoga and be kind to my body. I will also make sure today’s smoothie has some properties that will benefit recovery.

How is your training going?

It’s Complicated

In a relationship with food?

My relationship with food is complicated. Always has, but hopefully always won’t be. It does have a past though…

As I have said before I was the fat kid growing up. I may sound like a broken record when I say that but for some reason it stays with you. This may have been made more complicated by the fact that I literally had a balerina/Ms Teen USA older sister and lots of other dynamics growing up. Although they may speak more to body image than food relationship, but there is always a correlation.

When I think of my childhood some of my happiest memories are around food. I remember making fudge on the farm with one of my sudo Godmother’s as a young child. I remember my brother’s and sisters making Christmas cookies while listening to Christmas music (The carpenter’s) on an old record player. It’s funny too because I have a horrible memory when it comes to my early childhood but these standout. These are good memories.

I also have the stark recollection of my childhood doctor talking to my mother about my weight and giving her a diet I needed to follow. Do doctors still do that? I mean if you look at the pictures of me as a child, while I was not the ”ideal” weight I also now think this was extreme. Then again, I grew up in the 70’s, so I am betting times have changed. Based on where we lived (we moved several times, so this is how I tell times of my childhood), I would guesstimate that I was probably in 5th or 6th grade. Anyway, I remember getting into trouble for having an extra packet of oatmeal for breakfast. I don’t even remember the trouble (wouldn’t have been more than Mom saying something), but I remember the feeling. (Also in my Mom’s defense, she was deferring to the doctors and again this was the 70’s).

I would also like to give exhibit A to this story……

On the left and adorable but I didn’t know it at the time
On the left again and at that very awkward stage but still not at a level that screams in need of diet

So as I share these stories, I wonder if anyone else has thought about their complicated history with food and how it effects them now?

I have started to think more about my food choices. I have started to think more about my relationship with foods, how it effects my body, and what better choices I can make. For the most part as an adult, I really have never thought about these things. Yes, I have thought about what I want to eat, where we are eating, and all of those things; but I have never really given food choices much thought. I’m hungry. I eat. Not why am I hungry. Why am I hungry for XYZ and why am I making the food choices that I am making and are they really good for my body, my health and my mental well being. That last is in reference to when we gorge ourselves on chocolates, cookies, or what not and how it makes us feel later. You know the… I should not have eaten all of that food guilt/shame.

Recently I had a consultation and then my first session with a Holistic functional nutritionist. In just talking with her these two times, I have started to think about my food choices more. Her open ended questions of simple things….. What if your replaced X with Z, how do you think that would make you feel? Why do think you NEED to have a snack at night? Are you really hungry or is it just habit? She is a runner who has run several marathon’s and I feel this helps. She has also said, we will do no major changes to my diet until after the marathon although changes have already started to occur just in thinking about things. Plus in looking at my diet, she has already pointed out that I need more protein and I also need more water which I can and should implement right away.

For me, this is about my health. This is not about number on the scale. When she asked me what I wanted out of our time together and what our goals were, I thought of my Grandmother. A woman who drank nothing but probably coffee or iced tea. Who never went to the doctors and if she did didn’t really listen to them. Who smoked right up until she kind of forgot she did when she had stroke. Who up until the end was the healthiest unhealthy person you could have met. I said to Lisa (my nutritionist) that I worry with my hypopara and the toll it takes on my body (thinking long term kidney health), having to now use a CPAP machine, and now peri-menopausal that my goal is to be the ”bad ass woman that I was meant to me” channeling my Grandother.

The original badd ass woman

So this is my new life motto:) Ok, it may have already been my unoffical motto but I thought about it now.

So with this in mind, I have started implementing minor changes that are really not so minor but they don’t feel life altering which makes them easier to stick with.

  1. Start my day off with a glass of water before coffee. Preferably with lemon and continued through out the day.
  2. Instead of skipping breakfast or worse grabbing something aimlessly that really offers no value, I have started my day with smoothies (Go to my instgram to see them). I do not feel like I am giving something up and hubby now benefits because I make smoothies for 2. It’s kind of like a game now where he tries to guess what is in them. Besides being tasty (a pre-rec for anything I make), it is packed with nutrients and are filling.
  3. Thinking about what I am actually eating has made me want to eat better.
  4. Realizing that some eating is really just habitual and better choices can be made.

Lisa and I have talked about my Hypopara especially in our initial consultation. Some holistic groups I’ve been in are very anti-medication/supplement and feel like you should get everything naturally. Before working with her, I wanted to make sure not only did she understand but was on board with my circumstances. As a person with hypoparathyroidism, my body does not produce the hormone PTH which helps to regulate many things but Calcium is the big one. I also no longer have a thyroid. Because of these two factors, I take a boat load of pills a day. This is just the way it is…….. Some such as my calcitriol and thyroid meds are a must as is the vitamin D, magnesium, and, of course, calcium supplements.

All that being said, though, as I am entering this journey adding more natural calcium to my diet……. I am beginning to wonder if maybe….. just maybe…… instead of taking calcium supplements 4 times a day……. maybe just maybe….. I only need them twice a day, I could replace one or possible two of them from a food source. Would that be better for my body? Would it help me with my kidney health long term. More importantly for the short term, would it keep my calcium levels where they need to be?

These are things rattling around my brain and only time will tell.

What is your relationship with food and have you ever thought why?

PS – here is Lisa’s info – https://www.embraceyourwellnessjourney.com/blog

Taking Back The Keys

Part of being a passenger of life is abdicating responsibility and therefore accountability. If it is all out of our control, then nothing that happens is our fault. Not really the way it works. I realize that even though I had thought I was taking control, I had handed over the keys and just going along for the ride.

There is truth that with Hypoparathyroidism much is out of my control, but I also recently realized that I was giving up all control to it. That I was believing that due to the Hypopara that I just had to go along for the ride. That there was nothing that I could do That I just had to go along with the status quo. I was wrong.

I have talked about gaining the 20 plus pounds since becoming Hypopara. I’ve tried to loose it with no luck. So I just gave up. And this is not even about the weight but about health. For me this is now about my creeping up cholesterol, feet that are suffering from the extra weight, and now my sleep apnea.

This past week I took a step about taking back control and jumpstarting my healthy nutrition. I completed a five day healthy smoothie challenge which is just what is sounds like. Every morning instead of skipping breakfast or eating something filled with carbs an no nutritional value, I started the morning creating delicous, healthy, and power packed smoothies. They were yummy. They were easy to make and they also left to better choices later in the day.

Pineapple Mango Spinach Smoothie
Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie
Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana
Pineapple Banana Smoothie
Peanut Butter Banana Blueberry Smoothie

I found these to be a great way to start the morning and set me up for a better day. Come lunch, I was making healthier choices and I was thinking about what I was putting into my body instead of just aimlessly grabbing something.

One good choice can lead to another…….

How do you start your morning?