This summer Damazon and I were supposed to try the Tahoe Rim Trail again, but with all the snow and how long it took to melt, we knew that we would have to go somewhere else if we were to backpack. In fact, we haven’t been to Tahoe at all this year. However I digress; we decided that going to the Lost Coast would be good for us. It is 25 miles and mostly flat; something we could finish. It is considered more difficult than moderate though because of the sand and rock hiking, and it was. On top of that, there were three places that had to be planned because of high tide closing off the area.
We studied tide charts and maps. We hiked in sand and soft dirt. We planned. I bought a second knee brace since it was noted as being hard on knees, and I already have problems. I worked on lightening my pack and changed my water system. I got my feet prepared as best as I could and ended up buying my hiking shoes the day before we left for the trail.
I flew to Sacramento where we met and drove together to Manchester, CA. After a night there, we drove up to Shelter Cove to find where the shuttle would pick us up and found a place to camp. There are a couple of free campgrounds in the forestry area, but they are away from the pickup place quite a way. The parking lot had a no camping policy, too. So we ended up paying a $35 fee for a space at Shelter Cove. At least it had a shower and was just a couple miles from the lot. Bed time came early as we had to leave at 5am the next morning. But in the twilight we played games and walked about a bit. Excitement kept me up into the night.
I worked all day in my kitchen cleaning and roasting tomatoes, making two types of tomato sauce, and prepping veggies for the week. Exhaustion and hunger hit me at the same time. I was done for the day. After discussing meal options with my husband, we decided to go out to eat. It didn’t matter that we had been smelling wondrous tomato sauces all day; I was done in the kitchen.
However, with my husband, going to town for dinner turns into an all night event. We ate, talked to friends, got a movie, put fuel in my car, and washed my windows. At home, we visited with the cats and put in Aladdin. It was a cute movie, but we had to pause it occasionally to let a cat in or out. By the time the movie was over it was past midnight. I hadn’t done a specific exercise or written in the blog.
This could spell catastrophe for other challenges. For some reason, when I do this one, I pick up the next day, do a little double duty and move on. For me, it isn’t the perfection; it’s that I do my best to stay as true to the challenge as I can. I don’t give up and quit when something like this happens. I muster up and carry on.
Reflecting on the day, I did exercise by moving all day in the kitchen, sitting little. I made a healthy choice by honoring my hunger and eating well but not too much. And today I am catching up on the writing. I just slacked off on the writing department for a day.
This spring hiking in Hazen, the wind blew more than I usually like to hike in. But, I was there, so I might as well hike. The wind would be a good test of how I was trying to protect my ears. I knew that I would be hiking on the coast and in the wind. Usually the wind troubles my ears. So I was wearing my buff as an ear muff but it might be hot too. I didn’t’ want that either.
I was completely in my groove. I hiked up over the hill and around on the saddle for a bit. Then I started down a little used trail that was overgrown with low brush. The trail took a slight dip. As I was stepping over, I heard a buzzing. I thought that it was just a bee like bug. Looking down, I see a whitish dime sized thing swaying around. A seed pod? Too early in the year. Moving on, the realization that it was too windy for a buzzing flying bug to be out and about hit me. My stomach dropped. That wasn’t a seed pod swaying either. That was a rattlesnake bud waving at me.
Luck and fear hit me. This is the second time I have seen my least favorite critter on this saddle. The first time was a tarantula and now a rattlesnake. This surprise, unfortunately, has lead me to change my hiking routine. I wasn’t’ willing to have another encounter with a snake, especially not when I was alone.
I was going to write about the things I noticed by giving up sugar for thirty days during the actual time. I expected strong cravings, lethargy, and headaches. Instead I felt normal. I ate less altogether finding that eating fruit after dinner stops the cravings and grazing much faster than giving in to the sugar.
I did go for more of the simple carbs and salty snacks, but when I realized what I was doing, I was able to wrangle that in a bit. I just didn’t resupply my tortillas or sandwich bread. I quit buying chips. Then I ate more fruit than vegetables, but at least that was good fiber and healthier sugar. I avoided sweetened drinks but did allow an occasional juice. I didn’t feel deprived at all. I was motivated to keep going strong. I could do it.
My thirty days ended just before I went on a trip. The day that I realized my thirty days were up, I ended up eating several sugary things. This must have been a mental thing knowing that it was no longer forbidden. I was lethargic and headachy that day. Sugar was no longer a thing of pleasure; it was discomfort. I avoided sugar for several more days except for drinking my favorite coconut drink. On the trip, I had dessert with the rest of the family; it was a special occasion. Over time the sugar didn’t represent pain anymore, and I continued consuming it.
Now my grandkids have come and gone, and I am eating what has been left in the house. Lethargy has crept back in. I know I can avoid most sugar without much problem. With my trip to the Lost Coast, I am gave it up again. I needed to be as healthy as I could become in the next two weeks. Yes I ate sugar on the trip, but that was what my body needed for the exertion it went through. I would love to be in a place where I don’t need sugar, but that is going to take some time. I have learned that depriving myself of sugar only creates stronger cravings. I have been eating sugar since the trip almost more than anything else and it is not how I want to eat.
Someone might ask: how I am going to make sure that I make healthy choices? It is after all a part of my challenge. And that is a great question. I asked myself that when I wrote the challenge and again last night talking to a group of ladies. It is unquantifiable and ambiguous. How am I going to be able to mark that off the list daily?
Though I thought about changing it or taking it off, I decided that making healthy choices was going to stay. It isn’t about the actual choice that I make daily but that at some point I do make a good choice and recognize it. I have spent about 20 years yoyo dieting and telling myself how bad I am eating and what poor choices I am making so often that I believed the statements.
Now I want to recognize the positive. As it is said, positive thought will bring positive change. I am not a bad person; the food is not bad and neither are my actions. It is time to recognize that I can do good and that I have positive moments.
This is in a way similar to a gratitude list. This challenge is about noticing the good and bringing out the healthy. As I decided to quit dieting, I have also come to realize I need to stop the negative talk.
Daily, I am going to write down a positive choice that I made during the day. Periodically, I will compile them and share those choices here just as I will check in on the exercise progress I am making. This is my way of keeping myself honest about my challenge.
This has been an interesting and busy year; unfortunately my good efforts have backfired on me. I went sugar free for 30 days thinking that it would continue like the dairy free 30 days did, instead I binged for the next two months. At 32 days, I randomly realized that the 30 days was up and I wanted something sweet. Then that is all I wanted.
Beyond that, I am at a steady 206 pounds. My blood pressure is good, cholesterol is decent, and thyroid has no concerns. I do have elevated fasting blood sugar that we are going to recheck in six months. But otherwise, I am healthy.
I went backpacking on the Lost Coast in California for three days. I really thought that we would have to have an extended trip, but we made it in the usual three days. They were tough, but we did it with smiles on our faces.
My feet had been hurting again, so I had to have the injections just two weeks before the backpacking trip. I also bought new hiking shoes the day before we left. This was a great choice as I didn’t have sore feet afterwards. I’m still looking for the perfect pair of shoes, but I am getting closer.
I have returned to physical therapy for my back and have started getting therapy for my feet. This is not a pleasant experience, but it is one of the best decisions I have made. I feel an improvement and have been able to skip the last two scheduled injections. I am on a happy road to recovery.
Today, I started listening to Intuitive Eating, a book that was suggested by a dietician and my doctor. I have made a lot of progress in it but will have to relisten to parts of it. It is easy to day dream while a book is being read to me. But my healthy choice today is to quit dieting.
Life is good.
Hello everyone. I haven’t been doing well with the writing; it seems that there are so many other things to grab my attention. A couple of times this summer I did write a post, but I never edited and put it up. So, sorry for my lack of consistency. However, I had fun doing the 100 day challenge last year and have decided to do it again this year. I felt so accomplished and energized when I reached the last day of the challenge. The only challenge I have ever finished. I am going to repeat last year’s challenge of blogging and exercising every day, and I am going to add making healthy choices every day. At first, I was going to give up sugar, but with birthdays, anniversaries, and the holidays coming, that was going to be a huge challenge. So I modified it to making healthy choices. I can eat sugar but not as much. I can ask myself if I really want the food item and what do I really want out of it? What will make me healthy and able to hike the way I want to is also a good question to consider in moments of weak willpower.
Last year, I met with a dietician who suggested that I read Intuitive Eating. She even went so far as to suggest that once I worked through it, we could put on a workshop together for the community college. I got that book and workbook, but the progress was slow with me skipping months between readings. After a frank conversation with my doctor, I bought the book on CD to listen to in my car. I often drive 30 minutes to work or an hour to get to physical therapy appointments, so there is a lot of time to get so intense listening in.
So, this is my challenge this year – exercise every day, make healthy choices daily and blog for 100 days.