Living my values series: Focusing on health Part 1

My health has really come into focus since having Little Boy; well really since we set out to have Little Boy. Knowing we might have problems I did everything in my power to increase my chances of conception. In a single year, I had surgery to remove a mass from my ovary, got married, started seeing a personal trainer, revamped my diet, and started on prenatal vitamins. Along this journey some of my symptoms diminished and I was able to drop some of my medications. The change in a year was extraordinary and on top of feeling stronger, fitter and more energetic than I had in years I fell pregnant surprisingly quickly. I can’t sit in good conscience and say I fell pregnant because of all of the above; I put that down to fate. I do think however, that we can give fate a helping hand. Like that old saying goes;

“Pray to the gods but row away from the rocks”

The pregnancy and early motherhood took far more out of me than I was expecting. All of the strength and energy I had built up seemed drained away. I felt exhausted most of the time, as I’m sure most new mums do, and while I have regained some of my stamina I still feel a long way away from my pre pregnancy peak. So what have I done in the last 16 months to help get back to the place? Pretty much bugger all! At times I might have tried to convince myself I was “being good” eating my salads, but I have serious issues with how much sugar I consume and I practically medicated with sugar to battle the exhaustion. Consuming that many empty calories also wiped out any exercise I was doing, the brisk walk to work; the floor play with Little Boy in the evenings just went towards burning up the sugar.

So given that bugger all isn’t miraculously filling me with the strength, energy and vitality I need, it’s time to make a plan and start working towards feeling better. I have tried and failed miserably to implement a well-researched and planned out health regime before, in part due to lack of commitment, the f*** it I want chocolate moment came and I caved, and partly due to sheer overwhelm. Like all of the other habits you learned in life, you learned them gradually. You didn’t wake up one morning knowing how to wash, dress and get to work; you had that responsibility handed over to you gradually. So I will be taking a more gentle approach with myself this time and starting with small changes that will gradually make a big impact to my health. Whether baby steps or giant leaps I need to have an end goal in mind.

Diet wise I will be eating a low inflammation diet recommended for my condition. It cuts out, gluten (which I already avoid), most dairy, red meat, soy, processed sugar, high fat foods and processed foods in general. Sounds fun right? I have been avoiding this change for as long as I possibly can, but if I want to avoid future surgeries then this is the best way to row away from the rocks. The small changes I will be making, replacing milk with oat milk, adding omega 3 rich foods to my diet such as chia, decreasing my meat intake by increasing my green vegetable portion size and having two meat free days a week, vegan if I can.

Exercise wise I will continue my brisk walks which average out to over 20 miles a week, and as Little Boy gets more and more active there is more opportunity to run around after him. I want to be going to the gym twice a week with smaller daily workouts four mornings a week at home consisting of stretches, squats, planks, push ups and basic yoga poses.

Diet wise I will be eating a low inflammation diet recommended for my condition. It cuts out, gluten (which I already avoid), most dairy, red meat, soy, processed sugar, high fat foods and processed foods in general. Sounds fun right? I have been avoiding this change for as long as I possibly can, but if I want to avoid future surgeries then this is the best way to row away from the rocks. The small changes I will be making, replacing milk with oat milk, adding omega 3 rich foods to my diet such as chia, decreasing my meat intake by increasing my green vegetable portion size and having two meat free days a week, vegan if I can.

Today’s little steps were 10 squats before I left the house, a dairy free, gluten free lunch with smoked pork, brown rice, avocado, tomatoes and artichokes and a homemade chocolate chia seed pudding for my lunchtime dessert. It’s tasty enough but I think the texture could take a bit of getting used to.

Sonner than I think my little steps will leave me feeling strong, full of energy and pain free.

Me x

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