The Healthiest Month Yet

Hi, Friends! It’s been a hot second.

After I completed the Low-FODMAPs elimination diet (doctor recommended for heavy symptoms associated with ulcerative colitis), I thought I would have an epiphany list of foods that were contributing to my symptoms.

But that didn’t happen.

Instead, not much bothered me at all once I reintroduced the restricted foods back into my diet. Not garlic, not onions (maybe some kinds of tea?), not bread (I know, I know. You’re going to tell me to go gluten free and give me a schpiel about leaky gut. I can’t for the life of me notice a difference with or without bread, but I don’t eat it often just because it doesn’t excite me), and not even some kinds of cheese bothered me.

Before Low FODMAP I stuck to a [mostly] dairy free diet (with the exception of Greek yogurt, because it is fermented, so the lactose doesn’t cause unpleasant reactions for most people), and of course, I ate pizza every infusion day.

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Because it’s important (to me) to find ways to make infusion days suck less.

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And pizza elicits a genuinely positive, happy response from my body from the depths of my soul, which is the perfect cure from feeling like an actual sick person hooked up to an i.v. pole at the hospital for the better part of the day, when I should be mid-twenties and feelin’ fabulous. Amiright?

So you get the idea. Mostly cheese-free/milk-free diet (except every 8 weeks for infusion pizza days). I also didn’t eat processed meats, or beef, or fried foods. It’s great not having many symptoms after Low-FODMAPs. IT WORKED WONDERS for my symptoms, but I couldn’t seem to identify which foods didn’t work…which was kinda the whole point.

So I started eating mostly everything. Bagels in the morning. And drinking beer slightly more frequently. And working out less. And eating a cookie a day. And then maybe a handful of hot tamales candy, because why not? They didn’t hurt me! But then it happened.

I began, slowly but ever so surely, allowing food to control me, instead of using my “no” power button (Note: this WILL happen if you allow too much sugar in your diet- it is addictive…but ultimately it’s up to YOU). If I bought Justin’s peanut butter cups, I couldn’t keep them in the house, even if I froze them. I had to eat them. “I’ll start returning back to my normal, healthy eating habits tomorrow, so I better eat all the chocolate today.” And that accidentally became my daily mantra. “Tomorrow.”

“I’m going to eat CHEESE and enjoy today- but tomorrow I’ll go back to my good habits.”

Until suddenly my habits weren’t my habits anymore. Eating a cookie a day became a fix. Feeling energy-depleted and a good amount of self-remorse…I knew I had no make a change.

Which brings me to today. Now, today. As in I woke up before work and ran some miles, today. No more tomorrow.

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Today begins the Healthiest Month Yet.

And just what does that look like?

A bit of Spring cleaning on the inside. Simple. Eating foods that are fibrous and nutrient-dense and thought-out meals instead of “what’s at the cafeteria at work today?” because for me, that ends in disaster lately. And I deserve a colorful, planned meal that gives me a reason to get excited at lunch time. My main focus for the Healthiest Month Yet is non-scale victories. I don’t own a scale. I want to completely focus on how I feel. What are my runs looking like? How’s my energy fluctuating throughout the day? I shouldn’t need to rely on an afternoon coffee to carry me through until 5pm. Fueling well. That’s the name of this game (and if I happen to lose some fluff from my love-handles, I’ll take it).

But I don’t want to stress myself out with rules. I LOVE Whole30, and I reaped tangible benefits from cutting out high-FODMAP foods from my diet for six entire weeks. But I just need to apply all my food knowledge into my own daily life, no restrictions attached. Just eating good, fueling well, and moving lots; having energy and using it for good.

Because this month is the Healthiest Month Yet, starting NOW.
(Er, started on my 6am run this morning).

What are you doing for the month of May??? Sticking to an old routine? Trying something new?


P.S. If “Healthiest Month Yet” is TOO ambiguous for you, check back periodically where I will post some meals that I eat, workouts, and updates.

-Stacey

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