Saturday, January 26, 2019

G'Day as they say in Tassie!

I am enjoying summer in winter! I am Downunder with some of my family who are working here on a project for a few months. Tasmania is a great place to do summer in winter.

I am adjusting to a very restricted diet because of me gastritis but I'm doing quite well. My diet consists of a lot of rice especially brown rice and also a black rice I found here.  Tons of fresh vegetables like kale, spinach, beets and zucchini. I'm also enjoying some of the amazing summer fruits including some of the best apricots that I’ve had since my own father grew them in his backyard in California.

My stamina is much better and my strength is improving as well. I work out pretty regularly at the gym that is close by where I'm staying in Tasmania. Plus, I walk several miles a day averaging 5 to 8 miles almost every day. Hobart is a really walkable city which makes it such a pleasure to get around.  I am so incredibly grateful that I have taken so much better care of my health these last year’s. With my cycling, skiing and other sports I am in the past physical condition of my life. I can really enjoy a place like this and get out and see the sights by doing a ton of walking, much of which are done in tandem with a cute two-year old who I push around in her stroller.

 I am still losing weight, and am now closing in on a weight that I have not seen for over 25 years.  I think it really comes down to my restricted diet but also that I’m gluten free.

And to Sharon and Jane-thanks so much for visiting my blog and leaving a comment. I think about you both and hope for the best for you.
Till the next time,

Hobart, Tasmania Habor

Me at my Happy Place!

Monet's Garden in Tasmania!
A beautiful river

Black swans

The two-year old!

Fabulous summer market

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Near winter musings

Hello blogger land!  Winter has definitely started here in Minnesota, time for an update on this blog.

I am doing well, but I am now among the many people who are challenged by gastrointestinal issues. I found out about a month ago that some of the gut challenges I’ve had since summer are related to something called atrophic autoimmune gastritis. What this means is that the lining of my stomach is being attacked by my immune system and is thinning out.  On Tuesday I saw a Functional Medicine Internist who specializes in autoimmune recovery and nutrition. I will have a number of food restrictions including no gluten, dairy, soy, and corn among other things as my stomach heals.  I am learning how to cook and eat in a very different way and remain hopeful that I will be able to manage my symptoms and create greater longevity for the lining that I have.

As a result of my gastric challenges it is been very easy to lose weight for the first time in my life. I am simply not able to eat a lot and what I do eat is incredibly nutritious and not loaded with calories, fats, sugars etc. Now I have the converse problem of trying to stabilize my weight after losing about 15 pounds in the last 2 to 3 months. Despite my challenges in my G.I. system, I have maintained my exercise and strength training that I started last summer.  I exercise for 30 minutes almost every day and try to get to the gym to work on the circuits 2 to 3 times a week.  Cross country ski season has started and I am really enjoying that.

I also have the opportunity to travel to Spain (for work ) and the Netherlands (for pleasure) recently. Enjoy some pictures!  Take care of yourselves and have a great holiday season.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Falling into Fall!

I am continuing to chart out a healthy lifestyle.  I have exercised for the past 158 days for at least 30 minutes,  a record I am able to keep track of thanks to my Apple Watch. I do a combination of things lots of walking, hiking, cycling, and also rollerskiing. Now that I am spending quite a bit of time in Port Townsend Washington because I’m on sabbatical, I am able to do a lot of  hiking in hills and even some mountains and also cycling with hills as well.  I am certainly not a very fast walker nor a fast cyclist but I do believe every time I get out there I am getting slowly building my stamina and endurance.

My summer was plagued with some gut challenges and what I loosely call irritable bowel type syndrome. This has led to some weight loss just because I have had very little appetite to eat. My doctor recommended the FODMAP  diet.  It is fairly restrictive in terms of what I can eat with elimination of wheat and dairy products and many fruits and vegetables.  I also have given up my beloved yogurt.  Over my weight loss journey yogurt has been my go to  for mid morning or even an afternoon snack full of protein and lots of fruit. I am really good at making fruit smoothies that have a yogurt base. My favorite is Greek yogurt: nonfat.  I am on day two and so far doing OK,  but I am certainly craving my yogurt. Stay tuned for more as I figure out what’s aggravating my gut and digestive system.  

 For years I have waged battle with life and work balance.  Last week I read a really interesting blog post  that helped me to think about it’s not really life and work balance it’s carving out time to do the things that you really like to do,  and every day.  So that is my focus from now on for now so that is my focus for now.  Doing something I really enjoy every day. Every day.  For me right now that has been  placing a premium on reading books and going to the library.  I also am stepping up my exercise to at least two different kinds of exercise every day because I have the time and because I so adore being outside.  For is very mild here so far in the Pacific Northwest.  Temps have her in the 60s most days with lows in the 50s perfect temperatures to be outside most days with very little wind.

 Do something that you like every single day, Michele

Friday, August 31, 2018

Last August Day!

Hello blog world!
Already the last day of August. We are having wonderful early fall  weather:  mild and sunny days with a little bit of wind.  The summer  was a little bit different for me because I’ve been a bit off of my exercise regime because of  dejuvarex tenosintovitis: a  musical name for a sort of tendinitis that I have in my wrist.  That has made it a little difficult for me to keep up with my cycling and upper body strength conditioning.  A few times I rode my indoor bike when I felt my wrist needed the rest. I now am sporting a purple cast  to help stabilize the wrist and immobilize it somewhat.  I have not been able to do many miles of hiking and walking but except for the hiking walking does not get my heart rate up as high as when I am cycling. I remain reasonably fit but I’m still not getting thee cardiovascular aspect of it all.

I do plan to be a bit more active on this blog this year as I am on sabbatical. I am hoping to continue to work on that 20 to 25 pounds that I believe will really help ease my asthma and help me to continue my road to being fit and strong.

In the meantime, enjoy a few pictures of my summer.  Hope all is well with all of you in the blogging world. Michele