Happy New Year! Another New Beginning Awaits.

Another year has come and gone. It’s been a year of big changes for me.  New career paths are opening up for me, New opportunites, new friends.  But the one thing that hasn’t changed (and needs to more than anything else) is my health.

As a teenager, 5’7″ and 150 lbs, I was slender, athletic, and energetic.  I never dreamed that 25 years later I would be over 300 lbs with health issues that are a direct result of my weight: High blood pressure, severe sleep apnea, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, severe anemia, and borderline diabetic.  I’ve tried time and again to lose it the ‘right’ way.  Exercise, Weight watchers, Atkins, Primal, calorie restriction, diet pills, diet drinks, skipping meals, and the list goes on.  I wish I could say it was the methods that failed me, but it wasn’t. The methods did what they were supposed to do while I stuck with them.   It is my desire to be loved, my need for immediate gratification, and my tendency to procrastinate that tend to undermined me. Simply put, I failed me.

Now, here I am, having just celebrated my 42nd birthday, in worse health than I was at this time last year. But! I do not consider myself a failure.  In order to fail, one must quit trying.  And I have only begun (again) to fight for my life.

This blog will help me on my journey by keeping me accountable, allowing me to share and let go of my frustrations and failures, and to celebrate my triumphs.  It will act as my therapist and my coach.  And a way to connect with some who share the same struggles, those who have made it through to the other side, and those that might find inspiration from my journey at some point in the future. More than anything it is a point of reference to remind me of how far I have come. So the journey begins today.

There are so many things that have to happen to make this journey a success. Diet changes are only one aspect. I also must change my activity levels, my mindset, my traditions… in truth, every aspect of my life is affected.  And I realize that I can’t change everything at once.    I DO, however, have to eat properly, and that takes preparation. As I look forward, my biggest challenges will be jumping out at me immediately in the form of limited time. I am a nurse by day and a sports photographer by night.  Many days, I go straight from my day job to local sporting events. The key to conquering this challenge is advance planning.

Goal for January: This  month I will return to my paleo/lowcarb lifestyle. No more grains,and processed foods.  I will plan meals and cook in advance so that I can eat healthy even when I’m on the run from the time me feet hit the floor, til the time I crawl back into bed.

Rather than trying to find the time to meal plan weekly, I’ve decided to try doing it a month at a time. My favorite source for inspiration and new recipes is Chowstalker.  As I write this, this months meal plan is halfway finished.  Thankfully I already have a wealth of tried and true recipes to start with, and I’ll be sharing them, along with reviews of and links to others recipes that I try. I feel great changes looming in the coming year. Improved health is only one, but I anticipate the most rewarding.  Happy and Healthy New Years to you all!

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