Dealing with dieting when you’re sick.

When I’m sick, I want to do three things:

1) Sleep

2) Whine and feel sorry for myself

3) Feel Better.

Dieting is not on that list. So when my throat is on fire and the only thing I want is COLD, I’m not jumping for joy at getting up and blending a blueberry kale smoothie. Nope, I’m hittin’ the nearest 7-11 for a coke Slurpee. Can you even imagine how many calories are in one of those?

I’m also not all about cooking. But this weekend I did it anyways. I whipped up a chicken noodle soup with chicken broth and egg noodles, seen here:

chickennoodlesoup

Then, I whipped up a veggie beef soup which was pretty darn tasty. (Recipe coming soon). It was a miracle that I was able to chop 6,742 varieties of vegetables without collapsing.

veggiebeefsoup

The problem with being sick is that I get a big old case of the “Fu$* it’s”. Exercise didn’t happen. Sleep didn’t happen. Hell, even getting the mail didn’t happen. All I could do was chug dayquil and nyquil and hope that I’d wake up the next day feeling better. This caused me to have some issues in terms of eating. I had a slurpee, I had an extra piece of garlic bread, and at one point, all I wanted to eat on my throat was ice cream. Thankfully it was only a mini size, but still. Sometimes you get the type of sickness where you’re not hungry, but with this cold I wanted to EAT ALL THE THINGS. Something tells me that was more mental than physical… am I right?!

“Who cares,” I rationalized, “I DESERVE this.” I would say to myself, while pondering stopping for frozen yogurt or making popcorn. What I need to do is remind myself that I deserve to be healthy. I deserve to shop in whatever clothing department I want. I deserve to not worry about airplane seat belts, rude comments, and riding elephants. I deserve to eat well, and feel well, but I also deserve the grace and intelligence to realize deserving a happy, healthy life means accepting some discomfort.

One of the things I really like about my PCOS Diet Plan Book is that there’s a little blurb about how with any type of diet, you need to accept that there is some level of discomfort involved. So many healthy eating books make it sound like if you just follow their simple plan, you’ll never be hungry, your skin will clear up, you’ll drop all the weight and you’ll find a Unicorn with money tied around its horn in your backyard. This book straight up says that the plan won’t be easy, but neither is anything in life worth accomplishing. I like that. Honesty, yo.

Thankfully today I’m emerging from my exhausting sickness and I have less of the “EAT EVERYTHING” mindset, but I know that the battle with letting emotion dictate what goes in my mouth is far from over. It’s something I’ll have to work on nearly every day, reminding myself that what happened at work or if I’m feeling sick or if my cat’s meow is extra loud is NOT a suitable reason to eat. Truthfully, there’s only one reason to eat… and it’s if you’re hungry. Honesty. Accountability. I need it.

What do you do when you’re sick? Are you as much as a whiner as I am and want to medicate with food? Or do you lose your appetite?

*There’s an affiliate link in the PCOS Diet book link. If you were to happen to buy it from that link, I’d make like 3 cents. Blogging is very lucrative, folks. Just wanted you to know so I’m behing HONEST. 😉

Big Bear Getaway Part 2

After we set up the tent and swam in the lake, it was time to EAT!!! We had originally planned on cooking dinner at the camp site, but once 4:00 creeped around, we knew it would take forever to get supplies, set up the stove and fire, and hunt and skin small woodland creatures. Ah, you WERE paying attention. Just kidding about that last part.

Happiness is a warm plate

We went to the Log Cabin restaurant, built in 1908. I had previously been here with Matt and fell in love with the friendly servers, family feel and amazing comfort food. Since all I had eaten all day was a small bag of Funyuns and a Greek yogurt, I had the calories to splurge a little bit, so I opted for a biscuit and gravy and pancakes. Carby, greasy, salty goodness. Mmmmm delicious. It was amazing. Every bite tantalized my taste buds and I thanked the breakfast gods and whatever southern granny decided to smother a biscuit with gravy. I imagine said Granny standing in the kitchen saying – “Nah, this biscuit smeared with butter just isn’t fattening enough. Let’s drench it in pork drippings, cream and sausage, too!”

Smores!

All was well and we proceeded to head back to the campsite, stuffed and happy, ready for roasting marshmallows, ghost stories, and a few adult beverages. After one pear cider, I had one s’more and a little bit of chimichurri – an amazing Argentinian concoction made by Virginia’s dad of parsley, red peppers, garlic and spices. I was full but not uncomfortable – and miraculously was somehow only over by 240 calories in MyFitnessPal. (Tip: S’mores are actually fairly low in calories if you use reduced fat graham crackers, one marshmallow, and one chocolate square. Average calories: 120)

My gnome pajamas rock my world.

We then went to sleep (I know you’re jealous of my gnome pajama pants) and I spent the night imagining raccoons circling around our tent and trying to pretend the cold, hard ground was really just my gigantic, plush cal-king bed – you know – just a harder version. Yeah, it didn’t work. This was all well and good until I woke up at 6:40 AM to the smell of campfire and the sound of chirping birds with an agonizing stomach ache. I don’t get stomach aches often, and when I do, sorry to be blunt, it’s usually because I’ve been like a rabbit and have been consuming lots n lots of veggies. But this stomach ache was something else. This stomach ache felt like a pack of wolves tearing through my large intestine. I rushed to the camp bathroom (thank you, Hanna Flat, for respecting the modern day innovations of toilets) and regretted every fattening bite I took the day before.

Sorry to be TMI, but that’s kind of what comes with the territory with this kind of blog. I have NO IDEA how all of a sudden my body is like “Yay, healthy food!” and then “OH DEAR GOD NO WHY DID YOU EAT THAT?! PAIN! SUFFERING! BLOATING!”. I really didn’t think I’d made that drastic of a change in my eating habits, but as I’ve discussed with my lovely RD, sometimes the little tickly nerve fibers in your tummy really can sensitize quickly, and react drastically to sudden changes in diet and nutrition. The stomach ache put a damper on the rest of my day, as I’d get nice little twinges of pain to remind me not to eat crap (didn’t work – I had some french fries at lunch). It lasted into Monday, and caused me to miss my nutrition appointment and get a late start to work. So now I know – just say no. Just say no, because while it feels awesome in the moment, like a kid getting his first buck from the tooth fairy, the joy and excitement wears off as soon as the moment is over (in tooth fairy kid’s case, when he spends it on a cheap toy that breaks 4 minutes after he gets it.).

The good news is, my newly acquired “aversion therapy” has kept me on track this week so far, and MyFitnessPal and I have been good friends. It wasn’t the perfect end to my Big Bear weekend, but this isn’t Hollywood, so, ya know, I’ll get over it. Are you like me in that you tend to need sweeping, grandiose physical reminders not to do something, or are you a little more tuned in to the mind/body connection? Discuss!

Starve a fever, feed a cold?

I’m interrupting recaps to post a whiny and timely entry about being sick, and what weight loss/eating is like when you’re sick. You know how it starts. The little tickle in your throat, the slight stuffiness in your ears… and then, the one nostril that starts to leak a little bit  and before you know it, you’re a sneezing, sniffling snotty mess. I stayed home from work on Friday and remained largely bed-bound, and all day yesterday I pretty much laid around trying to recover.

The little chicken that I was hoping would save the day after being made into a pot of chicken noodle soup. It didn't work.

The past two days I’ve had NO appetite – none – not for the tiny cupcakes I got with a groupon, not for my usual weekend love affair with homemade popcorn. I had to force myself to eat a frozen entree and a bowl of HOMEMADE chicken noodle soup yesterday (Yes! The kind with a whole chicken!). Each bite felt gummy, unsatisfying and frustrating, especially because I couldn’t taste anything. I always know that I’m sick when my appetite goes away, because I am normally ALWAYS hungry. I can easily out-eat my husband. I’m not the type of person that would elect to take a “food pill” instead of eating, because I derive an almost obsessive pleasure from a big bite of a heaping sandwich or creamy spoonful of ice cream.  I missed my two familiar friends, Taste and Hunger.

The yummy Mexican food that saved the day

I knew things were lookin’ up today when I met my lovely friend Julie (Read about her adventures in Israel!) for a study session at a coffee shop. Halfway through our work, I felt the familiar rumble of hunger in my tummy – and I thought, Ah! At long last HUNGER has returned to me! We took a lunch break at a delicious little taqueria where I annihilated a cheese enchilada with rice and beans and a basket of chips. Not only did my appetite return with a vengeance, but so did my super-human taste buds. The sharp tang of onion in the pico de gallo danced on my tongue, while the salty tomato seasoning on the rice mingled with the sweet refried beans. Ah, Taste and Hunger, how I have missed you. As someone who desperately needs and wants to lose lots of weight, I admit – even though my weight loss goes much more smoothly when you’re not around (Yup – this cold helped me knock out another 3 pounds), my life would not be the same without you, Taste and Hunger. Despite our issues, I’m so glad I have you in ample amounts.

You + Me = Satisfied We Shall Be.