Current Faves: February 2018

HEY guys!

Happy hump day.

image

This week is well, going. Fourth week of classes and I still feel like I’m running around in circles, backwards, and blindfolded. I’ve always known spring semester to be harder than the fall for me, but this one definitely takes 1st place and not in a good way.

It is what it is.

Today I wanted to lighten the mood and talk about some of the things I’m digging as of late.

Reading

If a book is about poetry, motivational/self-help (especially one that isn’t super sappy and swears), or the wilderness – I’m all in.

Wild Embers – Nikita Gill

You Are a Badass – Jen Sincero

Into the Wild – Jon Krakauer

img_4556

Blueberry Tea

I blame Panda. This is totally okay though, because tea is good for you and so are blueberries. Therefore, blueberry tea must be extra good for me, like maybe I’ll get superpowers?

Climbing

Newest favorite activity. It’s freeing. The physical and mental aspects of climbing are what have me hooked. I think it’s a positive influence on my mental health because while I very well could have an anxiety attack on the wall, it wouldn’t benefit me in anyway. It teaches me to breathe and assess, two things that are easily overlooked and seldom appreciated.

Winter bike rides

Self explanatory? Yes.

And… YES, that is a kids Camelbak bottle with unicorns on it. My main spirit animal.

img_4192

New tapestry

Looking up from my laptop to see the forest… how could one not love this? HIGHLY recommend having your favorite spot on earth in picture form at your desk.

img_4554-1

Coffee grinder

I FINALLY joined the bandwagon of grinding my own coffee beans versus buying the pre-ground stuff. As an absolute coffee snob, I feel this was necessary and I’m mildly embarrassed I just started. I opted for a hand grinder because 1. Stronger forearms for climbing, and 2. It doesn’t make the whole house smell like coffee and I’m kind of the only one living here that likes the smell of coffee so I don’t want to be yelled at daily.

Essential oils

Just over here trying to be all holistic AF and not get sick/keep my body functioning semi-smoothly at a minimum. Favorites are thieves blend (clove, cinnamon, lemon, rosemary, and eucalyptus), pep talk (cardamom, sweet orange, lemon, and peppermint), and then just mixing peppermint and lavender! Mainly I’ve been using my diffusers (yes, plural… our entire house smells and it’s the best thing ever). However, I’ve been known to mix peppermint oil with arnica gel and coconut oil though and make it a rub. 10/10 recommend.

Questions for you-

Essential oil fan? If so, faves?

Current reading material(s)?!

 

“Relax wild one. It’s not your job to be everything everyone needs, and you don’t have to be impressive to be loved. Stop trying so hard. Just show up … and be real with the world. That is enough.” – Brooke Hampton

Advertisements

Semester beginnings & ramblings

Hi all!

Whelp, it’s been a hot minute.

My last post was a rather deep one. By that I mean it was deep AF.

I took school break off from blogging because I needed it. While I had every intention of posting, I also knew it wasn’t the right time. I even started a few; they remain hanging around in my draft folder. I like blogging because I genuinely enjoy it. Writing makes my soul happy. When writing a post doesn’t lead to fulfillment I know it’s not the right time. I knew that for a little while my being needed me to process and live more than it needed to write. For me, writing is the like the ocean. It ebbs and flows. I’ll always love it, but sometimes I feel closer to it than others. And, that’s ok.

That will inevitably be the theme of this post; it’s ok. Everything will be ok.

IMG_4314

Mt. Tecumseh – Jan. 2018

IMG_4311

Pano from Tecumseh – Jan 2018 (Mt. Washington is snowy peak in WAY distance on left)

First let’s get into what this current semester looks like… I’m focusing much less on academics and much more on research and working. This is obviously meticulously planned and calculated. The classes I’m taking are ASL 2, Introduction to the Deaf World, and Psychology of Child Development. I’ve joined a research lab and will be focusing on concussion and head injury. I’m also working a few nights a week as the manager at my work.

Great? Yeah, kind of.

I’m opting to take Deaf World pass/fail, not because I can’t get an A but because I don’t NEED to, because taking the stress and pressure off will likely prove useful. This isn’t a course for my major or minor (therefore aloud to be P/F), and I feel like I’ll ultimately take more away from the course if I’m not in my head about my grade. It’s not always what we are capable of doing, but what is best for our being – mentally, emotionally, ect.

Second “non-traditional” approach being taken this semester is that my child development course is being done in an “online fashion” even though it’s a face-to-face class. Let me explain this one… So I’ve previously discussed (briefly) about having over-stimulation responses to certain sounds, and that this over-stimulation typically presents itself in the form of a flight-or-fight response. Years later, I have a much more comprehensive understanding of the components of this issue – termed misophonia (miso). My primary trigger sound is typing, which as a college student in 2018 is nearly impossible to escape. Second, third, fourth, ect. (aka the bigger triggers/more difficult ones to work with) include chewing (auditory and visual – so seeing people chew or hearing it provokes the same response), sniffling (please let me know if you know of any locations on earth where people never come down with colds), that nervous/bored habit that when someone is sitting cross-legged and their top leg moves around OR when someone is continuously moving their foot/feet when sitting (obviously visual issue). I could talk much more about this but that isn’t the purpose of this current post. This is just to get into why I’m doing the bulk of my work for this course online and by-myself versus sitting in lecture… because I ultimately have to come and go so much or fully leave that I’m missing a lot of content and it’s 1. distracting for others and 2. emotionally/mentally draining for me. While I do have accommodations (grateful), I’ve also learned and accepted that sometimes being honest about all of this with professors is much more useful on both sides than playing it off as “I need to come and go and test separately”. Like, honestly, we are all human. Talk to people. Let them know what is going on. Be honest. Feel your feels. Do what you need to be successful short and long-term.

#preaching

My last course, ASL 2… for starters I dig sign. I was absolutely petrified when I changed from neuroscience to psychology because it meant I would need to take a year of a language. My anal side felt like this was a bad idea… My GPA was/is amazing which I’m proud of and didn’t want to jeopardize that. I always thought learning a language wasn’t my “thing”, after all I took Spanish 2 twice in high school and still walked out with maybe a C?! I’m happy that 1. It went much better than anticipated and 2. I love it. That all being said, due to current higher anxiety levels which in turn make the miso more heightened, for me, it’s been an interesting semester thus far. Physically being in class is draining and I do think there is more to this than simply I’m currently more sensitive.

So, that was a hefty load to drop.

What am I doing outside of class, research, work? Well, I’m using my week day time wisely as much as possible and taking some escapes as needed. Note: always needed.

IMG_4391

IMG_4392

Yay, snow!

This week I took Tuesday to go snowboarding in the morning and then went rock climbing at night. Days like this help bring me back down from my over-stimulated school self. I’m becoming painfully aware that I not only find profound bliss but also that I consistently need these things in my life. Going hiking on the weekend and then just lifting during the week with a run and bike here and there is great and all but it’s not enough for me to feel sustained. I’m not saying I don’t love those things, but there is something to be said about the magic felt when being outside and/or pushing both my physical and mental body – hiking, snowboarding, climbing, long exhausting runs. While lifting and very high-intensity workouts do help, being in a gym is stimulating and I find that the benefit really ends up only neutralizing the hit I take with being there. That said, how I feel and function physically is greatly improved by these things which makes them worth it.

It would be very easy for me to slip far down right now, with the uncertainties of school (both current and looking at graduate school), heightened mental health happenings, and feeling out of my element sometimes unable to escape. I’m trying to not put a ton of emphasis on negatives that arise, and rather take them for what they are and move forward. It is what it is and at the end of the day how I handle things matters. Conversely, the positives, the escape days, weekend hikes, being with people who feel like home… well this is where the emphasis is going. All of it. Because it matters so much, it needs to be there, and to sum it up with minimal word usage – the more I can stay absolutely stoked on life, the better my chances.

IMG_3934

Mt. Eisenhower summit – Dec 2017

IMG_3930

Casually plotting world domination.

IMG_4219

View from Mt. Jackson – Jan 2018

The thing is you have to fight the whole time. You can’t stop. Otherwise you just end up somewhere, bobbing in the middle of a life you never wanted.” ― Alexander Maksik

Life lately + a workout + molasses smoothies?!

Hi friends! It’s been a bit… Let’s chat.

I’ve been on the injured bandwagon since the beginning of April… the 5th to be specific. In my last post I told you guys it’s a sprain of my left ankle – ATFL and peroneal tendon inflammation . Shortly after this post I went back to the doctors again as things weren’t necessarily getting worse but there was also zero improvement… insert x-ray number 2 which came back normal, and an MRI which showed a stress fracture in the distal fibula (lateral malleolus). When the injury initially happened I kept saying it wasn’t a stress fracture, it didn’t feel right, it hurt “too much”, it felt like the peroneal tendon was ON TOP OF the distal fibula and I blamed the tendons/ligaments (so soft tissue) rather than bone. I mean after all I’ve had stress fractures before and I know what they feel like/how they present themselves. I also am MUCH healthier now and my body shouldn’t be in a position to develop one. However when it swelled a week after the initial injury and the bone hurt to palpitate I knew something was amiss.

3a0cafaa75ab9506f3874c5c83191230

I know my hips are off kilter as I have hip dysplasia in my left hip. Yep it happens in humans and not just dogs. I swear 96.4% of the time people find out I have this they say “doesn’t that happen a lot to dogs?”… My biomechanics are off because of this, asymmetrical hamstring and hip flexor strength/movement patterns, compensations, ect. I have found a way to work with this in terms of lifting and hiking but running is an entirely different ballgame. Every single stress fracture I’ve dealt with is from running (e.g mechanical/use due to lack of shock absorption), or a combination of running and other activities (e.g volume/overuse).

My PT (whom I have seen for every single injury mind you) essentially told me that my foot/ankle mechanics are not designed for running. Especially road running, which I hate but the trails have been very snowy until now. My dorsiflexion is crap, things are tight, I have a bunch of scar tissue, my natural gait pattern is supination (aka I try to walk on the outside of my foot…placing stress on the lateral ankle), ect.

I’m accepting that this is going to be a work in progress. While I ultimately want to get back into distance racing, my current goal is to finish the NH 4000 footers in a year, so by July 20th. I’ve thought long and hard multiple times about this goal since this injury and if I have to push the date back it will NOT be the end of the world. To be honest, if I hadn’t already healed five stress fractures, have a good overall awareness of my body, and built a solid mental health base I’m not sure how I would be handling this. I’m still irritated, anxious, and annoyed, but I’m accepting the process better than I ever have with an injury before. It’s been a lot of letting go of my natural need for control, allowing myself the space to think things through, and not blaming myself too harshly.

IMG_1058

“Count your rainbows not your thunderstorms.” – Alyssa Knight

So… the workouts. How does one train with a lower extremity stress fracture that can’t take extra weight? Well, I went from 6 days a week 1-2 workouts a day to 4-5 days and one workout. I’m being smarter, taking more rest (something that will inevitably stay even upon fully healing this injury), and working with what I CAN do versus overthinking what I can’t do. It has been a mix of upper body, core strength and stabilization, mobility, lower body which is safe (e.g lateral band work, monster walks, hamstring curls, gentle biking/spin bike, GHD back extensions). I’m making it work. I’m sharing yesterday’s workout with you guys, and note this bench rep scheme is not my normal style of high weight/low rep. I’ve been enjoying changing things up here and there to create a different stimulus, have some fun, and see what my body can do. It’s kind of HE** at 110 total reps and something I may do once every other month… if you give it a whirl please let me know what you think!

1. Bench press: 20.18.16.14.12.10.8.6.4.2 reps. Start at a weight and increase by 5 lbs. each set. Plan it so that the 2 rep is a weight you could usually 4-5 rep because after 108 reps things feel a tad different…

2. Weighted dips 3×6

3a. Dips 3×12

     3b. Hanging leg raise 3×20

4a. Pull ups 4 sets max effort

     4b. L-sit on rings 4×15 seconds

5a. Push ups 4×15

     5b. V ups 4×15

6. Cable press 3×10

7. Tricep push-down 3×10

0c4a15d42160b6d754abdba0f77c42a8

In other news I created a new favorite post workout smoothie concoction! It’s like peanut butter banana meets a cookie full of cinnamon and molasses goodness. The flavor profile is broad and it’s classified (to me) as a strange but good combination for sure.

What you need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla cashew milk (or almond/dairy, whatever you prefer)
  • 1 cup water (you could do less, I just like the volume!)
  • 1 scoop protein powder (I used Pescience peanut butter cookie flavor)
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. blackstrap molasses (can do more/less, depends how much you like molasses!)
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp. powdered peanut butter
  • Hemp hearts
  • Ice

IMG_1089

Directions:

  1. Add everything except molasses, ice, and toppings to blender and blend until smooth
  2. Add molasses and QUICKLY blend as it will try to stick like cement all over the blender
  3. Add as much ice as desired for goal thickness
  4. Top it if you feel like it (I used hemp hearts!)
  5. Drink up, buttercup

Well, if this wasn’t the most all over the map post that I’ve ever put up on the blog than I’m not sure what is.

“Time will pass anyway, you can either spend it creating the life you want or spend it living the life you don’t want. The choice is yours.”

FIVE: survey time

Hi guys! Happy 4th of July to everyone Smile I hope you all get to sit back, relax, remember what the holiday is about, and have some fun.

I’m back with a little survey action because why not?! I’m such a sucker for surveys (maybe it’s the science part of me – ok well that makes like no sense but whatever). I find it super interesting to find out random tidbits about other people that you wouldn’t have guessed otherwise. Like, Allie really wants to Horseback ride more often, that’s super cool. I also jacked the idea of taking this survey from her. Without further ado…

FIVE PLACES I WANT TO VISIT

  1. Colorado
  2. Costa Rica
  3. Germany
  4. Ireland
  5. Mayan, Inca, Aztec ruins – I think they are just super cool and I love seeing and experiencing history because it gives me a better perspective of this world

FIVE FOODS I EAT EVERYDAY

  1. Eggs
  2. Sweet potatoes – at one point I was eating WAY too many and my skin began to turn orange. No joke. It’s now like a half to one a day.
  3. Mustard – with horseradish and apple cider vinegar in it please… my breath smells great after I eat this stuff. So great that you should probably avoid hanging out with me until I’ve brushed my teeth or covered it up with gum
  4. Ice cream – So Delicious Cashew Milk (I mentioned this stuff in my favorites post). Seriously like all flavors are the amazing and I know this because I’ve clearly had almost all of them. Chocolate truffle, Snickerdoodle, Cappuccino, Salted caramel… all the bomb.
  5. Nut butter

FIVE THINGS I WEAR EVERYDAY (I swear I do wear “real person” clothing too!)

  1. Gym shorts
  2. Birkenstocks (kids Birkenstocks, mind you, I’m a womens 5 haha! #savingallthemoney)
  3. Sweatshirt
  4. Sport bra (#ittybittytittycommittee)
  5. My hair in a ridiculous bun

IMG_6545

Point proven.

FIVE BOOKS I LOVE

  1. The Sun Also Rises – Earnest Hemingway
  2. Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins
  3. Being Peace – Thich Nhat Hanh
  4. The Champion’s Mind – Jim Afremow
  5. When Things Falls Apart – Pema Chödrön

IMG_6433

FIVE THINGS ALWAYS IN MY GYM BAG

  1. Jump ropes – literally there are three Smile
  2. Wrist wraps – I talked about these here as well
  3. Nutriforce Sports balanced hydration in citrus flavor
  4. Extra sneaks
  5. Gum – Orbit sweet mint is my go to and I usually chew it during the beginning of my lifting sessions and get bored with it about half way through!

FIVE BEAUTY PRODUCTS I USE DAILY (or bi-daily)

  1. Too Faced Better than Sex mascara
  2. Victoria’s Secret PINK body spray
  3. Dr. Bronner’s soap
  4. Stila eyeliner
  5. Essie nail polish – it’s always painted on my toes so technically I use it daily Winking smile

FIVE THINGS I DO DAILY

  1. Color and/or doodle
  2. Stretch/foam roll
  3. Sing in the car and (if I’m home alone) shower
  4. Drink too much coffee
  5. Pee too much – probably a result of #4… fellow lab and gym friends are concerned

IMG_5577

FIVE THINGS I WISH I DID MORE OFTEN

  1. Yoga
  2. Walk outside
  3. Swim
  4. Spontaneous adventures
  5. Hiking

IMG_6435

I do enjoy my walks to get coffee and then back to the lab however. A nice change of pace and a healthy dose of fresh air + sunshine (aka a break from chemicals and some vitamin D…)

That’s all for now kids. Have a wonderful day and I’ll look forward to any of these surveys you guys repost (seriously, do it for my pure entertainment). Buuuuuut if you don’t feel like doing it at least tell me: what is something you wish you did more often? And, where do you want to visit/travel to?!

“Remember, remember, this is now, and now, and now. Live it, feel it, cling to it. I want to become acutely aware of all I’ve taken for granted.” – Sylvia Plath

Summer plans + what I’m doing + some entertainment

Hi there! It’s the weekend, yahoo. To be honest, this entire week has been like a weekend day. Not too much to accomplish, and pretty easy going. The spring semester ended up early last week and I just started my summer sports nutrition class on the 23rd!

Other than school ending and then starting again not much is new. I start summer research full-on this coming week, so I’ll be found in the lab Monday – Friday until end of August. I’m so incredibly pumped to have weekends off. I’ve worked weekends every summer since around 16, so over six years! Ready to have that time off, mainly to start balancing out work, working out, and my social life a bit better. The social life needs some tlc.

For summer classes, I’m taking sports nutrition (month of June) and life-cycle nutrition (month of July). I’ll have August off and will hopefully be headed out to San Diego for a mental health vacation. The first week of sports nutrition so far is pretty lax, a decent amount of work but not uber challenging. The class is right up my alley, and I’m so excited for what’s ahead in terms of materials to learn! Perhaps I’ll get all jacked up Winking smile or get some “useless muscles” (joke between people at my gym)… apparently a member told a trainer they didn’t want to get useless muscles… like shit really…. muscles are useless? Why didn’t someone tell me sooner. Oh wait, I’m being 110% completely sarcastic. I enjoy biceps. I also enjoy being strong, thriving, and being able to support my body… but that’s just me. I’ll keep my useless muscles.

The gym has been going great. Like great great. Lifting feels solid. I’m not the fastest when it comes to strength gains, but maintaining isn’t a concern so I’m happy with that. I’ve been really dialing in on training, and all things recovery (sleep, sauna, stretching, nutrition), and it’s paying off. My endurance is increasing, recovery from workouts is a bit faster, and I’m able to handle a slightly increased volume, and I rarely have any nagging pains or random injuries. It’s been a long time coming to be able to actually say all of this. A LOT of work has been put into the process of getting my body physically where it’s at. There is still a long ways to go to get to where I hope to be, but that is part of the journey. Progress is a process.

IMG_6109

Just focus. (or look like you’re going to sneeze before a lift… either seems to work Winking smile)

Those are essentially my updates for y’all. SO now just for a few random tidbits of information for your reading pleasure.

IMG_6136

THESE.ARE.THE.BOMB. You need them… Now. It’s like the cookie dough (wouldn’t have guessed that from the name would you? Winking smile) out of cookie dough ice cream. To a key. I’m amazed. As a kid I always ate just the cookie dough chunks out and left all the ice cream…haha typical Sarah. So yes, I approve.

IMG_5600

My brain daily. But serious question: do penguins have knees?!! I’m really curious and don’t feel like looking it up on Wikipedia, or rather…the source of all knowledge.

92435e7359fc68df60ff36c637d2138f

It’s a damn good thing pineapple is my favorite.

12f63a6a81cb8d8074dc6ee5b7f2ad47

More e-cards because they’re also my favorite. Apparently a lot of things are my favorite today. But this is SO TRUE. I swear I’ll run 3 miles outside and it’s 25-35 minutes depending on how much lifting I did the day before (to be honest) and how many bugs fly into my face, but then I’ll run three on the dreadmill (yep, I mean to spell it like that) and it’s seriously an hour… well not really… but it damn feels like it.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed writing this post. I miss blogging more and connecting with all of you wonderful blog people that know who you are! I’m happy that it’s the summer and I have much more time on my hands to get some posts out and stalk all the rest of you on the blogosphere.

“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” – E.E Cummings

Currently 1.25.16

Hi guys! Thank you all SO much for the relentless support on my last post. Between texts, a few emails, and a couple of you who know me in “real life” – thanks!

I wanted to break up the seriousness and do a currently post to spice things up. Also, back to school tomorrow and I need to get myself in an easy-going mindset. I keep seeing these and between Allie and Emily I decided to join the bandwagon and create my own version! Without further ado…

Current music: Begin Again by Purity Ring. Click play and continue reading for max enjoyment.

Current want: new jeans! I always buy them on consignment to keep it cheap because let’s be honest designer jeans fit substantially better. Also, being 5’0” and having decent muscle makes for a rather difficult jean buying experience. Consignment pants also fit like they will fit because they’ve been worn and washed. No tricks. My favorites are AG, citizens, and Rag&Bone. But I’m eyeing these new AG jeans on Nordstroms site and they go for something nuts like $160. To bad I’m starting to work less, not more. While that’s good for school and sanity, it’s bad for the wallet.

Current go-to item: definitely my Bose SoundTrue over the ear headphones. These will be a complete savior in school this semester! So comfortable and great sound blocking capability. Thumbs up.

IMG_5560

Current workout: I keep finding myself doing this little number at the end of my lifting workouts…

Five rounds for time of: 15 KB swings, 25 DU, 10 squat thrusts, 10 parallel bar dips.

Current news: I moved closer to school! Squee! This is a long time coming and a HUGE change but a great one nonetheless for me.

Current drink: americano. Double shot. Taken black. And then I take a nap. No but seriously I’m THAT person. I don’t mind it. I’m also that person who takes an insta picture of her coffee. #sorrynotsorry

IMG_5224

Current funny: 100% of the time yes.

IMG_5151

Current food: 1/2 avocado with salsa and a couple plantain chips. Num num.

Current mood: excited and nervous for school. Excited about moving. Pumped with recent gym happenings. Oh, and sleepy. Right to bed after I hit publish on this post.

Current beauty product: lotion? does this count haha I’m going with yes absolutely. I’ve been all about the Avalon Organics Aloe hand lotion (which the lemon is also great and smells amazing!)

I’ll be posting again soon as a follow up to my last post and to update on school! In other news I created a tumblr just for fun – Barbells & Caffeine! And of course to leave you all with some good vibes because I can’t end a post sans quote…

“Don’t sit and wait. Get out there, feel life. Touch the sun, and immerse in the sea.” – Rumi

Life ramblings // fitness + nutrition talk

Hi all! Last week I left you off with how I was going to be testing out one rep max lifts – those went well. I ended up doing more of a three rep max and then calculating from there. With so many resources for online calculation of a one rep max from a lower percentage it’s so simple and much less taxing on the body. I’m not a big fan of 1RM’s just because of how much stress they put on your central nervous system. I think in a competition setting that is another story, but for me I’m just using that number to base my lifts at 80-90% off of so it’s not as big of a concern.

I’m doing a new lifting program which has me lifting heavier first and then moving to a lighter but still moderately heavy weight for the latter sets. I’ve always done more of a loading style in the other direction but have been finding myself warn out by the time I reach my heavy sets that either I struggle to get through them, my recovery blows, and/or my form goes out the window which makes me crazy. I’m really excited to see how this new set up goes and I’ll keep talking about this on the blog as well as it’s entirely new to me.

11049414_1550997555151873_1948866388_n

Insert random bicep picture because my face is absolutely priceless.

Another change I’ve been working on is figuring out what is going on with my digestive system. Yep, we are going to have that talk. Right here, right now. I’ve had GI issues pretty much since I can remember (circa age 5ish). My development and struggle with an eating disorder definitely exacerbated those problems and they have been worse ever since I started recovery and even with being in remission. It’s definitely frustrating because all my doctors kept saying that I would feel so much better as time grew between where I am now and my ED, so as to say the longer I stayed in a good, solid, healthy place. Also that things would improve once I got my period back, which happened two years ago this month (yahoooooo) and is a topic for another day because who doesn’t want an entire post on how to get your period back?! Exciting stuff I tell you. That hasn’t been the case so far though. I’ve talked briefly about this on the blog but I want to get a little more into it.

Recently with an increase in my time in the gym both lifting and doing other things such as running, kickboxing, jump rope, and of course… yoga for balance – I’ve been eating more which is fine and totally good and healthy BUT my gut symptoms have also increased. I’m finding that I do better with more dense food (read: higher calorie) vs less dense because I’m able to get in the nutrients without the bulk. I also have been following a “paleo-ish” approach for about two years now which for a while I did feel better, and I do still feel better than I did when I was a vegetarian and eating things like beans and more fiber-rich foods (don’t get me wrong I still love my veggies), but I’m wanting to experiment a little more in depth.11379149_462226437273669_947037059_n

Case in point on the vegetable lovin’:

Chicken + spring mix + onion + zucchini + sweet potato + tessamae’s (so good).

I think experimenting with our bodies on basic levels such as fitness and nutrition are really important for optimal living because it allows us to question things/habits that we partake in on a regular basis and see what is actually working and what can go out the window. Of course I believe in the motto if it’s not broken don’t fix it, but to be honest my gut has been broken for a while now and it’s time to actually get my act together and fix it. One really big motivator for me here is that my father has Crohn’s disease and seeing him struggle makes me that much more determined to figure out what is not sitting well with my body because I have that ability and am otherwise fairly healthy.

With that being said though I’m not a huge fan of promoting elimination style protocols unless completely necessary and ESPECAILLY hesitant in individuals who have a history of eating concerns because it can be highly triggering. I personally even don’t want to have to focus this much attention onto food but I want to feel good so I’m working with it. On the other hand though I’m in a really good place in terms of my recovery so I’m not concerned about going to a place that would be dangerous if I weren’t as solid. That is definitely an individual thing and something that I felt I really wanted to touch on quickly because it’s important.

I have the unique opportunity to work with an RD through school and because I’m a student it’s covered (by way of mandatory fees of course) which is amazing and I’m super thankful for that. I know a lot about testing my body for what works but clearly not enough because I haven’t figured it out yet! It’s nice to have another brain to pick for information and ask endless questions.

For now I’m actually just changing around things more based off of what I think could be causing problems versus a more “strict” elimination style protocol because I have some inklings of what could be causing problems. One thing I’ve noticed is that my energy is a lot lower lately and my recovery from workouts is also sub-par so I’m initially starting by thinking about what specifically could be causing that because obviously my digestion would be all over the place with those issues alone. I hope that makes sense? I’m starting my adding in more carbohydrate sources and reducing my selection of healthy fats because I’m pretty sure avocados and me don’t agree. I also think that nut butter is a bit of an issue and I’ve noticed I feel sick after eating it straight, so like a spoonful of almond butter ect.

12106210_887741871302531_1541972469_n

More carbohydrates =

Oatmeal + banana slices + raw honey + sprinkle of chia + spices!

I’ll keep some updates on what I’m finding to work and not work coming but I want to remind you guys who might be reading this with GI issues that every body is different and is unique in it’s requirements and what foods are digested the best to have an optimally functioning digestive system. Don’t copy what I’m eating unless it’s out of ‘oh hey that looks good (which I totally hope it does haha) I want to try that’. Don’t do it expecting to make yourself feel better, perhaps it might, but perhaps it won’t because what works for me might not work for you. Embrace your uniqueness. That is definitely what I keep having to tell myself because this is a really long process. Do what you can with what you have.

 

“Don’t think about what can happen in a month. Don’t think about what can happen in a year. Just focus on the 24 hours in front of you and do what you can to get closer to where you want to be.” – Eric Thomas