15 Days

Where does the time go?  Where, indeed!  It’s been 15 days since I last wrote a post, thought perhaps I should make sure I was still here, ticking along!

October 22nd I got my cold.  I am still sick.  Seriously, this has not let up in almost a month.  Ray got bronchitis right after my last whiney post about how much he’d been coughing and, thank God, got some medication and some relief.  Last Friday night I thought I was finally feeling better and that I would maybe even be able to make a gym date this week.  Saturday morning I got what feels and sounds like bronchitis but I’m told is not.  Soooo…..four days in with this cough now and I guess I just keep on plodding through and hope that eventually I too can get some relief.

So, besides being under the weather, what’s gone on over the past 15 days?

I’ve walked my dog a measly 25 kilometers.  Given what I normally do each week, I’m at about 50%.  Which, strangely enough, is how I’m feeling health wise…about 50%.  Go figure.

Along with the paltry amount of dog walking, we’ve also raked over 20 yard bags full of leaves out of our back yard and then this past weekend, hauled 2,211 pounds of hardwood from our upstairs to our downstairs.  That’s over a tonne….if you’re wondering.  Happily, with the mountain of wood moved, we’ve completely rearranged our upstairs living area, cleaned up a whole bunch of clutter and put the spaces to proper use.  Unhappily, as always, I completely forgot to take a before picture so that I could show you the after.  It’s quite a remarkable change, actually, and I have fallen in love with the front room.  Our comfiest couch is in that room (always was, just wasn’t really a very nice area for sitting or napping) and now our nice stereo is in that room also with a dedicated iPod loaded with nothing but Christmas tunes.    

This work was all done in anticipation of us hosting two Christmas gatherings for a total of 13 people.  And, once Christmas is over, the upstairs is getting a new wall with French doors to close off the front room and that 2,211 pounds of hardwood that we just humped downstairs will be humped right back upstairs and laid.  New paint, new door/wall, new pocket door, new floors in the entire upstairs.  Can’t wait, that carpet is old and trashed and impossible to clean anymore, I will have a frigging celebration when it’s gone!

On to more serious matters; although, as far as I’m concerned, laying on a big pillowy sofa listening to Christmas music in front of a lit tree is pretty serious, indeed.  I had done my Four Week Feel Better plan over October and in that, completely eliminated sugar.  I’d popped into the gym a few times, got my “around the house” energy back and was feeling pretty good.  And then Halloween came and I had some crazy notion that I could have a wee treat or two from the Halloween bowl and still feel alright and be able to moderate my consumption.  One M&M (ONE M&M) led to a 10-day, mostly in secret, chocolate binge. 

Around Day 10 of the ridiculousness, I was alerted to a strange symptom that I’ve had for awhile but that seems to grow to unmanageable proportions, directly related to the amount of sugar that I consume.  What I discovered is that I have every major symptom of adrenal fatigue; sleep well but tired during the day, weight gain around middle, constant and absurd sugar craving, jumpy/higher than normal (for me) anxiety, ongoing cold (a month long so far), increased brain fog, irritability.  I keep saying that I have issues with sugar and then making a bit of a joke out of it, but I’m starting to think that I have an actual problem with sugar….that maybe I am already experiencing adrenal fatigue normally and then I throw sugar in there and it compounds the problem and creates a vicious circle.

The adrenals are glands right above your kidneys that issue hormones to deal with things that are stressful or exciting; cortisol (the stress hormome) and epinephrine (adrenalin, the fight or flight hormone).

We all have stress in our lives and I suspect that my body probably copes with it alright under normal circumstances.  Unfortunately I have a lot of anxiety and fear surrounding being in a vehicle at anything over parking lot speed (thanks car accident) and my body goes through a fight or flight reaction several times a day….which I think my body probably still is able to cope with.  But then I further stress my system by eating tonnes of sugar….which require the exact same adrenal response as a tiger attack or money stress or a relationship fight.  So every time I eat a piece of Almond Rocha (or 10), I am pretty much causing my body to physiologically react to a highly stressful event. Super.

Given that information combined with my most bothersome symptom of adrenal fatigue, I have again, eliminated sugar completely.  It’s my only option at this point.  Obviously I have no control, I’m not even sure if it’s within my ability to control outside of complete abstinence.  I actually do fine with a full embargo, it’s moderation I have issues with, I struggle with “a little bit”….and actually struggle harder & experience more intense symptoms each time I end an embargo, almost the way an allergic reaction would work; each time you are exposed to an allergen, the symptoms worsen until your body just can’t deal with it anymore.

So, I’m on Day 10 of a sugarless existence again.  I gave Ray all the chocolate and candy that was in the house and told him to go and put them somewhere that I wouldn’t come across them.  I won’t go searching for them but if I come across them, all bets are off.  I’m feeling lots better in all aspects already, I lost the 4 sugar-pounds that I’d gained since Halloween, lost them in a week in fact, which helps to prove my theory….since there is no earthly way I gained OR lost 4 actual pounds of fat, if the only thing I changed was sugar intake then there’s something about that which my body does not appreciate.

So, that’s the past 15 days in a really big nutshell.  Coming up?  Some fun stuff.  My mom and my sister are coming over on Friday, we’ll go out for dinner and then they’re going to help me decorate and make some new decorations for Christmas.  This’ll be the first year (in 5) that Ray and I have really done the Christmas thing so I’m excited….and I need help!  We have a holiday party on Saturday night that I’m not looking forward to at all (bad food, bad music, bad booze) but am going out of obligation/deference.  The next week there’s a girl’s pub night near the end of the week, the Friday Ray’s daughter and her husband want to come over for a tree trimming party and on the Saturday I’m throwing myself a secret birthday party (I planned a pub night for us & 3 other couples but I’m not telling them it’s for my birthday so that there’s no gift obligation!).  The weekend after that we’re celebrating our birthday (my sister is my twin!) and then it’s frigging Christmas already!

I’ll try and be more regular about posting.  This whole cold for a month thing along with not really feeling that great overall has cramped my blogging.  It’s no fun for me to keep writing or you to keep reading about how crappy I feel or how I haven’t gone to the gym.  I realize life isn’t all about food and fitness….but those are really important pieces of my own life and when those things aren’t going along smoothly AND I feel like garbage, it makes for a harder time blogging.

Since, according to the doctor, there’s actually nothing wrong with me, I’m flipping my switch over the next couple of days.  If there’s nothing wrong with me then this is just how I feel now and I have to work with that.  If I have no chest infection and, according to the doctor, not much of a cold, then there’s no reason I should be sitting at home waiting to feel better.  Onwards and upwards!  (I totally don’t buy this right now, it’s just words on a page, I feel like crap.  But, I’m going with the “act as if” principle, hopefully that counts for something!)

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