Aj’s Health update- The negatives with the positives. Day 311

photo-3

So- um, yeah.

Kind of fell off the blogging radar a bit. SORRY.

I am still here though.

You?

If you did stop by with an odd curiosity about my whole health update thing, then that is what you shall get.

We are encroaching upon the end of this year.

I haven’t met many of the original goals that I had initially INTENDED to do.

I can’t say I’m surprised.

Disappointed, but not surprised.

I did however manage to accomplish a FEW things this year that I was positive were impossible.

I actually RAN and COMPLETED my first 5k. I did the Orlando Color run back in September.

I was NOT able to RUN the entire thing.. (not because I’d not been training…but because I made AN INSANELY stupid decision the night before as well as moments before the race.)

The night before I was so stressed about the race I decided to power walk 4 miles. I started just before sun down and walked as if my feet were on FIRE in my shoes.

I didn’t want to “run” per say.. I wanted to SAVE my RUNNING for the actual race.

So, the day of the race comes.

My legs are so sore I want to cry.

I go up and stand in the starting coral :30 mins early (because I am crazy nervous)

I end up being alone for the run.

I mean, my family was there waiting for me at the finishing line, but the actual race- just me and my headphones.

OH- and the other FIVE THOUSAND OTHER RUNNERS.

Did  I ever mention I get totally freaked out in crowds?

This crowd was a curious one.

COLORFUL. CRAZY. LOUD. ANXIOUS.

It was fun to watch, yet terrifying to be a part of.

I was so engrossed with watching the crowd, I TOTALLY FORGOT TO STRETCH.

The announcer guy gives us the go, the unicorn high fives us and we are off on the pre planned 5k route.

OFF I WENT.

I made it about 2 songs and then my legs said &*%$#@#(*(!!! OUCH! You moron! You want me to RUN? Have you lost your #$%$^&*(())(*&^$@# mind?!”

Yes, my legs actually yelled at me!

Oh, the audacity!

I slowed down.

I walked fast.

I ran.

I walked normal.

I pushed past the urge to puke.

I got mad.

I was embarrassed, afraid everyone would laugh at me.

I walked faster.

I actually passed some other people (WHO WERE ALSO WALKING)

I saw the first mile marker.

I ran.

I ran through it.

I ran past it.

I kept running.

My legs got mad again.

I continued this pattern until I was one corn starch, powered painted, colored HOT MESS!!!photo-2

CROSSING THE FINISHING LINE with my final time under :50 mins.

Initially I was really bummed about my time, but then I remembered that ONE year ago that day I could NOT EVEN WALK.

I had only been running for less than 6 months and I finished a race.

I’ve been having a lot of off days and struggles but yet I keep trying.

My pants have gotten snug again- which means one thing…

I need to start lacing up my shoes and get back on the trail.

I may have been delayed due to my own stumbling thought patterns and food addictions- but I’m still determined to keep moving forward.

I didn’t get this way over night. Change takes time.

Just like my race, I may not be thrilled with my timing- but I’m still going to push through…

and giving my legs more and more reasons to yell at me.

:)

Until next time,

See ya on the Random Side

Aj Luck

 

 

Aj’s Health update day 166 – Just me, myself and my Coach.

Sometimes this is JUST the visual I need.

Sometimes this is JUST the visual I need.

Hello. Nothing like a sporadic update eh? Sorry. I know, I am terrible at this. I will try to get better. Promise.

So- in my last post I talked about my illness and the horrible bout of depression I was going through. I decided I needed to kick things into high gear. I had had enough already!  I mean, seriously! I’m not going to lie- I confessed last time that my eating choices weren’t as they should be. I fell in love with my caffeine god, COKE, all over again. I was consuming ONE every day. (I justified it by saying I was working out and “at least it wasn’t diet.) Yeah… I know. Pathetic. I know what the stuff does to me. Yet, the addiction crept back in.

I was eating more bread, wheat and gluten than I had been before. I started noticing that my fibromyalgia symptoms were trying to come back ON TOP of the depression.

In my gut- (literally) I knew my food and drink choices were the cause.

I decided to kick things up a notch and really buckle down on the fitness. My husband and I agreed to STOP eating bread and drinking COKE for 30 days. Kind of like a fast. We need to kick the habit all together – but baby steps is typically how we move, right? Right!

So- back to the juicing, smoothies, and pretty much “clean” eating again. 0-low processed foods and as natural as possible.

I am still doing my Ease into 5K app. Tomorrow I will start week 5 out of 8.

Yesterday, something happened to me. It was weird and very un like me. I hit a groove. I started running (like the app told me to- ) but when the walking intervals came up, I KEPT ON RUNNING. Maybe it was a fluke. I had just gotten new ear buds. Maybe that was it. I was REALLY into the music. 6 minutes went by, then 10, then before I knew it I had RAN 1.4 miles in 18 minutes. Okay so the timing may not be that great -

BUT I RAN!

I RAN OVER A MILE!

I RAN OVER A MILE NON STOP!!!

I RAN FOR EIGHTEEN SOLID MINUTES!!!!

This was me- right after the COMPLETED RUN!! ( I was soo about to burst into tears- literally!!)

I JUST RAN AN ENTIRE MILE!!!! 1.4 to be exact!!

I JUST RAN AN ENTIRE MILE!!!! 1.4 to be exact!!

6 months ago – SIX MONTHS- ago, I had days where I could barely drive, walk, hold my car keys or even my phone.

There were days were ALL of those things were IMPOSSIBLE due to the severe fibromyalgia inflammation.

YET- Yesterday, Look what God enabled me to do.

The picture at the top of the post is a random picture I found on the Internet. It depicts my mental state of mind perfectly while on the treadmill. I am there, afraid that I won’t be able to complete my workout. Then I see a mental image of Jesus. He is wearing a coaches uniform, sunglasses, a hat, a windbreaker, and a whistle. He smiles at me, encouraging me each step. Together, we are GOING to keep running.

In September, I will be running my first 5K.

I have no doubt, my “Coach” will be right there with me.

After All, He promises me- He will never leave me, or forsake me.

:)

(P.s.) I totally ran 1.2 miles TODAY too… STRAIGHT THROUGH! (and I have began swimming 20-25 laps 4-5 times a week~)

GO GOD!

Until next time,

See ya on the Random Side!

Aj Luck

Aj’s health update day 150- knocked down, but not OUT!

I'm STILL in this fight!

I’m STILL in this fight!

Hi.

Yes, I’m still here- I’ve just had a little set back.

Let me explain.

In 2009 I was officially diagnosed with what is called Pseudo tumor Cerebri. Sounds scary, trust me, I know. Basically what this is – is intracranial pressure. Our bodies have been designed to create spinal fluid and distribute as needed; then discard what is NOT needed.

My body however does NOT have the discarding function. SO the fluid builds up causing cranial pressure. In layman’s terms this means I get INSANE headaches, swollen optic nerves, causing blurry vision and sometimes vision loss.

The first week in May I was starting to suffer these symptoms and I knew all too well the road I was about to take. My headaches were getting worse, as was my vision. I was suffering severe vertigo as well.  Eventually I was taken by ambulance to the ER and admitted for the next four days. They did and emergency spinal tap (something I WILL NEVER RECOMMEND going through… YUCK!) where they proceeded to drain 12 ml’s of spinal fluid off of my spine.

Normally one is supposed to lay completely still for four hours following this procedure. I however got VIOLENTLY sick right afterwards that caused me NOT to be still at ALL!

So- finally settled down thanks to a constant i.v. mixture of phenergan, morphine and dilaudid.

Feel free to google those meds. If you would like the short version- basically I stayed stoned via an i.v. for four days non stop. This was to keep the wicked headaches away. (Yes, I still had them even after the spinal tap.)

After I was released from the hospital my symptoms didn’t clear up right away. (It can take up to a month or more.) I couldn’t work out because of the nausea and vertigo. I could hardly drive for the same reasons. I wasn’t able to cook. This opened the door to a lot of take out and deliveries. SO my health was yucky. I wasn’t exercising. I wasn’t eating healthy at all…. The meds they kept me on, even at home kept me loopy and tired. What else would you expect but for depression to come knocking on my door.

To make the deal even sweeter- I was called into my managers office and was told my assignment had ended. (I work for a temp agency.) I have no doubt my illness and inability to work much in the last few weeks aided this decision. I can not blame them- nor do I.

I’m sad but I know God is still watching out for me and my family.

I’m not going to lie. I’m still on the mend upwards. I’m still battling a HORRIBLE bout of depression. I’m still not making ALL the smartest choices with my food. (Though I am trying.)

I’ve started MAKING myself learn how to run.  I began using an app, last week, called Ease into 5K. It’s not easy but I want to do this. I will do this.

We have cancelled our personal training for now, until the budget gets better. (I.e.- I find more work.)

I may have been knocked down. I may be proverbially bloody and bruised… but I am still in this fight!!!

Until next time,

See ya on the Random Side,

Aj Luck

 

Aj’s health update day 111- The power of a pep talk

 
 
 
 
Keep moving!

Keep moving!

Hi.
Last night my hubby and I had dinner with some friends from out of town whom we hadn’t seen in quite some time. It was so good to catch up. (And yes, we did pick a healthy place to eat…Seasons 52! Y U M!)We share a common bond in that we have both been on “healthy lifestyle” kicks. She has been working on getting healthy for over a year now. She told me last night she has ran 11 races since last April and has dropped 63 pounds. I am sooo excited for her! I tell her often that I watch all of her posts about running, in secret hopes of being a “runner” one day too.
The best advice she gave me last night…was KEEP GOING. Talk to yourself often. “Hey, you may not have RUN that 5K, but you did walk it. IT is better than sitting on the couch!”- In other words, find the positive and embrace it. Seize the moment.
:)

Earlier this afternoon, my hubby called. We were talking about this past week and how we “fell off the wagon” so to speak with our food choices. (Since our anniversary.) Yes, we have eaten a lot less at home- which means more processed (and MORE SALT!)
I can feel the bloating from the salt…ugh!! Drinking a TON of water.
I was telling him I was pretty down, feeling kind of miserable.
One thing he did point out, even though we haven’t been making the smartest choices- we are still TRYING to be mindful. For example- we have bought one meal and split it. (This controls not only cost but calories) and we seem quite content afterwards.
A year ago.. we would have finished the plate EACH. So progress… is STILL progress.
Maybe I need to lighten up on the self inflicted guilt?

Tonight, we work out. It has been about a week.
I still have yet to break in the new workout shoes.
Tonight, looks like it will be the night.

Hubby says he will juice with me. We are thinking about doing day time juicing and one protein rich meal per day.

Not sure when we will start. Will keep you updated as I know.
Until next time,
See ya on the Random Side..

Aj Luck

Aj’s Health Update day 109 MONDAY

Here's to the 3 day juice detox!!

Here’s to the 3 day juice detox!!

Good morning!

I realized I need to update how the juice detox fast went…

(yes, went- as in I am done with it.)

I did manage to complete my three days. Day 2 was the  toughest. By the end of day three I started feeling much better, inside and out.

I will admit that my workouts were TOUGH. During the 3 days I had ZERO protein. I now realize that protein is essential when trying to do the cross fit workouts. Nonetheless, I still completed the workouts with mild modification.

Saturday my husband I celebrated our 11 year wedding anniversary. We threw caution to the wind and ate whatever we wanted (the entire weekend.)

I will tell you- my body was more than ticked.

I had LITERALLY just spent three days cleaning up the mess, then I went in all Tasmanian devil like and reeked havoc on it again.

What’s done is done- we move forward from here.

This morning we are both having a yummy spinach smoothie for breakfast.

During the weekend we decided to buy new workout shoes for our anniversary gift to each other.

He is officially down 35 pounds and I am 30. We have a lot more to go, but we both feel we need to buckle down harder for the next 30 pounds- workout and eating wise.

So- there you have it.

Yes. I did survive my juice fast. Yes, I will do it again (maybe in another 30 days.) I can definitely tell there is MUCH benefit to it.

Tonight, we are supposed to workout, (and break in our new shoes) may our trainers have mercy on us! :)

lol!

Until next time,

See ya on the Random Side,

Aj Luck<3

Aj’s Health Watch day 105- day 2 detox Soup’s ON!

Soup's on!

Soup’s on!

Today is day two of my juice fast/ detox.

Not gonna lie. It’s not even 7p.m. and I am exhausted. I struggled today with focus and really just wanted to crawl back into bed.( According to Joe Cross he felt the same way during this time as well…Guess I am right on track.)

AND.. we had a client bring in a HUGE platter of home made chocolate chip cookies and brownies today. Don’t worry, I passed. But SERIOUSLY!

Then another co worker gave me a large bar of imported dark chocolate.

Sometimes I feel like the enemy of my soul is taunting me. Still, I remained focused and stayed on plan. NO CHEATING.

I hit a wall this afternoon, standing in the kitchen starring at the mason jar filled with green juice. I just couldn’t do it.

I left, went home and made me some SOUP. The picture above is what I mixed together.

Five fresh campari tomatoes, one fresh clove of garlic, one fresh leaf of cilantro, one fresh leaf of basil, one stalk of celery, one red pepper and one yellow pepper, then some oregano mixed with distilled water.

I pressed the “soup” setting on the blendtech and watched it pulverize the ingredients into a steamy hot yummy batch of comforting goodness.

It was the best “tomato” soup I’ve had in my life. I doubt I will ever eat canned tomato soup again. Truth.

It helped.

This morning’s blend was:

spinach, kale, carrots, pineapple, green apple, banana, fresh lemon slices with the peel, ice and water. I have to say it was pretty yummy. The lemon helped A LOT. IT made it very fresh tasting. (zippy too.) I will try this mix again.

Okay..so there you have it.

Being honest… heading to bed…. RIGHT. NOW.

Nighty Night!

Muah~!

Until next time,

See ya on the Random Side,

Aj Luck<3

Aj’s Health Update day 104- CHEERS to day 1 detox!

Breakfast of champions

Breakfast of champions

Hello from the land of liquid veggies and fruits!

As the  first day of this fast/ detox comes to an end, I am happy to report I have survived and stayed on plan..- ALL DAY.

I am not going to lie.. I had my moments when I wanted to toss “the juice” across my office and run for the giant bowl of tiny candy bars in the lobby.

I DIDN’T do it…but I WANTED TO.

This morning my breakfast consisted of: Baby spinach, carrots, celery, cucumbers, pineapple, banana, green apples mixed with a healthy dose of ice and filtered water. I drank the entire 24 ounces. Needless to say I had a full tummy.

Throughout the day I continued to fill my juice glass with water about 7 times.

I got hungry again around 11a.m. I had made an additional 16 ounces of my breakfast blend and put it in a cleaned out peanut butter glass jar. I went in to the kitchen and took a good 2-3 sips then put it back. That did the trick until close to 1p.m.

Thankfully, I work very close to home. During my lunch hour I ran home and made another batch of juice. ( I finished up my peanut butter jar of breakfast blend while juicing batch #2.)- “Oprah calls that multi- tasking” (Any idea what movie THAT line is from??)

Answer: SWEET. HOME. ALABAMA. :)

My afternoon batch consisted of: Spinach, butter lettuce, cucumber, yellow bell pepper, red bell pepper, green apple, pineapple and banana and strawberries. I added a bunch of ice and water as well.

I bottled it up in a 32 ounce mason jar and filled my peanut butter jar back up as well.

Back to work I went. I continued with my water and drank another 18 ounces of juice.

I have to admit, the SMELL of the peppers was a HUGE turn off- but I couldn’t actually TASTE them.

There was a lot of MIND OVER MATTER. I also had to keep in mind the main reason behind this FAST and detox.

My hubby has been wonderful and very encouraging. He sent me texts off and on all day long. THE COOLEST part of the day was when I got to work this morning, I looked down at my phone and had gotten a text from a friend with this scripture:

“But he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. ” 2 Corinthians

Now that is a good motivational scripture to keep ones focus in check. :)

Hubby and I went and worked out tonight. Overall, I did pretty good but had to modify a few things due to being a little light headed (because of the lacking on the protein.) It’s all part of the process.

Have I mentioned, that I have seriously cool work out mates and trainers.

LOVE them!

(I also got some seriously cool messages from a new friend encouraging me and offering me some great advice on the juicing journey.) I am diggin’ all the people God is putting in my hubby and I’s path during this time. It’s mind staggering and humbling! :)

I am finishing up my last 12 ounces of the green juice for the night. (Spinach, grapes and banana) then I am headed to the shower and bed.

Oh and YES, I am still taking ALL of my MNS C Advocare vitamins… just not the Spark. :(

Until tomorrow,

See ya on the Random Side,

Aj Luck <3

Aj’s Health Update day 103 Birthday update- raise your glass!

Happy birthday to me!! The gift of health..keeps on giving back... :)

Happy birthday to me!! The gift of health..keeps on giving back… :)

Today is my birthday.

Today is the day I set over 100 days ago to try and achieve my first goal – to be under 200 pounds.

Did I achieve it?

Keep reading if you really want to know…. :0

A few nights ago my husband and I stumbled across a documentary called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead by Joe Cross.

It was one of the most fascinating shows we had seen on the desire to get healthy. (Click on the link to read more about Joe’s journey. It will blow your mind.)

A few days before we saw the show I started praying and asking God to show me what to do to break this insane vicious cycle of eating horrible, wading in waist high (pun intended) guilt, then trying with all of MY strength to get back on program.

I felt like my answer was simply- going back to the basics. I needed to start over. I needed to detox again. Clean the slate and give my body a break. (A. From all the junk and B. From all the self induced stress ABOUT eating all of the junk.)

So here is where my journey will take yet ANOTHER twist.

Today I celebrated my birthday- STRESS FREE with family and friends.

Tomorrow I will begin a juice ONLY detoxing fast. I have a number of days in my head of how long I believe I will do this- yet I am not ready to truly commit the number to the page so to speak…just yet. At least not the FINAL number.

I will tell you I have committed (for all intents and purposes of this blog) to juice fast AT LEAST three days. This will give my body the rest it needs and time to re set.

I will log in tomorrow and tell you what I am drinking, how much and when. I will also let you know how I feel and the effects it’s having..or not having.

In my heart of hearts I believe this is the next step.

I will continue to workout with our trainers.

I will also continue to take my meds, Advocare vitamins and drink WATER only (in addition to the juices.)

**p.s.- the juices I am talking about will be a blend of raw, fresh produce. 80% veggie, 20% fruit. NOTHING processed or store bought. All thrown into my blendtech and poured over ice. :)

As far as did I make my first goal… No. My last weigh in was 212 on my home scale. My starting weight, on the home scale, was 238. Giving me a grand total of 26 pounds loss and 18 inches loss over the last 103 days.

Tonight, I ran across a picture that was taken of myself beside former American Idol contestant, Colton Dixon. This was taken in October 2012.

Colton Dixon and I - October 2012

Colton Dixon and I – October 2012

Now, this is a picture taken literally just before I typed out this post… of me now.

 

Me- 4/23/13

Me- 4/23/13

Do you see a difference? I still have such a long way to go…but I am still taking baby steps..each and every day!

Until next time,

See ya on the LIQUID (Juicing) Side,

Aj Luck <3

(I have decided the best gift I could give myself was the gift of health.)