Monday, December 22, 2014

This, that, and the other thing

Hey everyone, it’s been a while! Miss me?

I’ve been slowly writing this post a paragraph at a time over the past couple weeks, so the end result might be a bit disjointed. I was going to post this two weeks ago, but then I caught a cold and didn’t feel like doing anything. Anyway, here are some thoughts I’ve had.

I’ve been very gradually working towards improving my health over the past ten years, increasing my effort more and more as I felt less and less healthy. Since starting this blog I have focused my energy on what I’m eating, and have been doing a fairly good job overall at sticking to my goals. I think it’s finally paying off! I’ve been feeling pretty good, digestion wise, and I’m starting to notice a couple correlations that I had not realized before, so that’s exciting.

Now that I have my definite trouble-makers, dairy and gluten, mostly out of the way, it’s a lot clearer to me what else affects my digestion. Remember when I said that I was going to quit eating peanut butter and nuts because they’re expensive and I suspected hard to digest as well? So I did that, and all went well. Then I decided to test peanuts, so I had a handful with dinner. I am now fairly certain peanuts give me gas. Pretty deadly too! It’s possible there was another trouble maker in my dinner, so I’ll probably test peanuts once more after I’ve eliminated it again. We all know how much I LOVE peanut butter, so if this turns out to be true, I’ll be really disappointed.

I’ve heard that being tired can make food cravings worse. However, since I almost always crave snacks, I couldn’t really tell that it made a difference. This past week, though, I was doing surprisingly well at not having cravings, even when I felt slightly hungry. It was so strange, and so awesome! I suspect it’s possibly because my body is finally getting used to not having snacks. Eating those carbs just makes your body want more carbs! So anyway, on Sunday I went out to dinner for a friend’s birthday and was out pretty late, resulting in going to bed a lot later than usual. On Monday I didn’t feel too bad, but by the evening I had that overwhelming urge to lie around and eat and eat and eat, with very little motivation to resist it. Hmm, interesting… I guess getting a good night’s sleep is important for even more reasons! Is it totally lame that I’m always excited for bed time? Oh no, a classic symptom of getting old!

So, I realized that I haven’t written about exercise in a while. Exercise used to be my primary focus when it came to getting in better shape, but I guess recently I’ve been concentrating more on what I’m eating to improve digestion. I’m still exercising, though! After six months of recovery, I’m finally able to go jogging without suffering from shin splints. I haven’t amped up to how much I used to run, but I’m working toward it.

I’m trying to exercise at least once a day, but I hate to admit I haven’t really been staying on top of that. I feel like I don’t have enough time these days. I can think of three things that could be taking away from my exercise time. One is writing this blog! Another is the increased time I’ve been spending grocery shopping and cooking so that I can stick to this new food plan I’ve been doing for the last couple months. And finally, it’s winter and it’s cold and I have such a hard time dragging myself out of bed in the morning! Even though I wake up at the same time as always, I often don’t get up that early.

Don’t expect me to post again for another couple of weeks. My winter vacation just started!! And my brother arrives in Japan on Christmas Eve, so we’ll be busy having lots of fun!

I’m going to continue trying to eat well for my body over the holidays. I’ve learned a lot of tricks over the past few months, like making safe dishes for myself like I did at Thanksgiving and immediately giving away or throwing out anything tempting that could cause me problems. Wish me luck! And good luck to you with whatever you decide to do, including eating all the fudge if you’re so inclined!

I’ll leave you with a couple beginning of the holidays pictures.

Bonnenkai (End-of-the-year-party) #1 - raw chicken

Bonnenkai #2 - nabe

Bonnenkai #3 - sashimi, garnished with a fish head
(Bonnenkai #4 has no picture, but I ate sea cucumber for the first time!)

Christmas in Japan = fried chicken and cake. So popular,
it's even in my school lunch. Why? Because. Marketing.

My presents don't quite all fit under my tree...

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight!

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