Focus

So, 2014 is underway… I look at my blog and I have FOUR blogs that I started, and never got back to… Do I lack focus on my blog? Possibly… more specifically I have been reaching out microblogging with my instagram account (Do you follow me over there? my name is KrisGetsHealthy) 2014 the year of Honor, honoring myself, my choices… making sure I am focusing on what I need to do to set my lifestyle up for those sustainable changes we need to make to have a lifestyle stick.

Since I took my new job back at the end of 2011/beginning of 2012 I have had an increase in my bottom line… meaning my rear end… not cool! My focus has been to try and make my life, that WAS working to get my weight down, work with my new 10 hour days of high stress near non-stop desk work.

I found that looking at the big picture was SO overwhelming, in as much as it wasn’t working. You can’t manage everything at once. There is too much to control! I have taken to breaking it down into more manageable parts and I have been trying to establish each part into it’s own manageable little bubble.

The first thing I worked on was to establish a bedtime routine… in my job I need to be sharp, I need to look at the bigger picture, visualize traffic patterns for the time of day, cross reference with the general layout of the state/city in my mind, estimate recovery times from airports, think critically etc etc etc… Dealing with brain fog from fibromyalgia is bad enough some days, add a lack of sleep and my goodness a lack of sleep spirals my brain into a VERY messy place!

I have a fairly strict bedtime that I keep. I am slightly more flexible on the weekend, but not every weekend… and if I do it one day I try to keep the regular bedtime the next. (for example if I am up Friday night, then Saturday night I don’t usually stay up). I sleep with headphones on, (sleepphones actually) that I can pull down over my eyes and use as a blackout mask. This is not to say that I don’t have insomnia come visit me on occasion… I have melatonin and a few herbal sleep support things I can take. There is this awesome thing called Sleep Water that I drink on occasion that helps too. My sleep routine is, I would say, pretty well established, it is a habit. A healthy living lifestyle habit. People that tell me they get 4 hours or 5 hours a night on a regular basis and can’t figure out why they aren’t feeling well, or can’t do X (whether that is focus, or be on time, or lose weight, or whatever) I just want to grab and shake… sleep is a foundational element.

So now that I have that habit well established I am looking at what are the bigger holes in my life… what are the things that are SO IMPORTANT to health, and wellness and well being, that I just don’t have a handle on. One of the things that happens with my job being so busy is that I forget to drink..not just water, but anything… So many night I would come home from work and find that I had only had a cup of coffee in the morning, and then whatever I was drinking with dinner! How horrible for my body!! I took to taking a 3 liter bottle of water with me to work, and I’d work to drink that during the day. I did pretty good with that, since it was in my line of sight most of the day. Having something visually there means I can’t avoid it, I can’t ignore it. However ambient water gets old… it started cold in the morning but by the end of my 10 hour shift it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for. What is a girl to do… if I don’t see it I wont drink it.

The last few weeks I have been having great success at monitoring my water intake with an app from the iPhone marketplace called Plant Nanny… it lets you set reminders to “water your plant and water yourself.” You set your weight, your activity level and it tells you how much water your body needs. I am set to sedentary since I have a desk job, and since even when I hit the gym it isn’t much activity… it would put me at normal at most. The default reminders you can set are every 2 hours between 8am and 10pm, I have mine set to start at 0400 and run till 0500 reminding me every hour to drink. Even if I don’t go get a drink right away when the little alert pops up it at least puts the idea in my head that I need to be hydrating my body. I need to make drinking a routine that comes as naturally to me as going to bed. I need to focus on hydrating my cells, pushing toxins out of my body, and helping my body learn that perhaps what I felt as hunger is thirst, or a combination of both.

So here I am bringing my #Focus to one thing at a time. I can’t do everything, I am spread so thin at work trying to control everything that I am glad to be finding a balance and being able to pick and choose one healthy goal to focus on here in my everyday healthy life. Finding the focus and determination not to give up. Honoring my body by making sure that I am establishing some kind of healthy routine, and making sure that I am putting it into place. The more you do something the more ingrained it becomes.

Do you track your water or do you find it’s just one more thing to try and keep track of? How much sleep do you get a night? Do you try to get 8 hours? What kinds of healthy living routines do you focus on in your life?

Catching Zzz’s and the Fourth Meal!

One of the things I neglected to post about yesterday was that among the things Cassie spoke about on Saturday was how crucial sleep is for each and every one of us. Especially for weight loss. As many of you know I work some pretty crazy hours, right? I get up at 0300 in the morning M-F and work 0400-1400 (meaning I am in the office at 0345, because I start on time, knowing what is going on and if my relief is on time I finish at 1400, rarely do I get my feet out the door of the office before 1415) this means I spend 10+ hours a day at work. How much time does this leave for the rest of my “life” In short, not much. I used to work nights, and I kept a crazy schedule, sleeping when everyone else in the world was awake… I used to have sleep apnea and slept, and even napped with my CPAP on. It didn’t take long for me to realize just how crucial sleep was in my life. Being behind the wheel for my job as a driver meant i could be putting others at risk if I was drowsy.

Did you know that sleep helps your immune system? Yep! Your body works to restore your body when you rest. Think about it, it makes so much sense right? All day long it has so many things to do to keep you functioning that when you finally sleep and rest it can take care of itself. So sleeping, and taking care of yourself, is truly letting your body take care of itself!

Sleep also regulates Leptin and Ghrelin which are the two hormones that regulate hunger and satiety. Cassie spoke about a common phenomenon that gave me a chuckle as I used to see it all the time when I worked nights. I call it the bar closing munchies. The longer you are awake the hungrier you get, and the less satisfied you are. Have you driven past a McDonalds at about 2:30 in the morning? Have you ever seen the line that extends around the building? Is everyone on the planet SO HUNGRY they can’t go home and make something, and they are never small orders… it is always several burgers, multiple orders of fries, junk garbage and crap. (no offence) You eat the food you would normally eat, plus extra, because you just aren’t satisfied. That’s the leptin and ghrelin being disrupted by being tired!
This is why I believe TacoBell has cornered the market on the “Fourth Meal” Cheap carb laden food that will carb bomb you into sleep. If you believe that it is the tryptophan in the turkey at thanksgiving dinner that makes you pass out, you would be mistaken. It is the stuffing, the potatoes, the rolls, the starchy corn, the ticking time bomb of carbohydrates sending your body into shock, nap needing mode. That “fourth meal” at TacoBell will do the same thing, fill your stomach up enough to make you “full” send you crashing out to sleep just long enough to wake up in the morning wondering why you did that to yourself.
I know when I am up late I find myself starting to get hungry, I look at the clock, often times it truly has been 8 hours or so since I last ate and my body might actually be telling me it is in need of something as time has slipped away from me. Other times, I have been consistent, had enough to sustain me and I can tell myself it is time for bed and I don’t need anything else. It is okay to be hungry.
Sleep helps the brain, it helps the body. Adults should be getting 7-9 hours of sleep a night, how much do you get? I have a bedtime… yes a 30-something adult with a bedtime. It sounds superlame right? My phone goes into Do Not Disturb mode at 1700 (5pm) meaning you can’t reach me by phone unless it’s an emergency. This is the time I get into bed. Yes it seems excessive, but I am one of those, I need a drink of water, oh I have to pee again people.
I get somewhere around 8-9 hours of sleep a night. I need it, my job is high-stress and super demanding on my brain. I can tell when I am not getting enough sleep because it starts to effect my work. I occasionally slack on getting my sleep and I pay for it for the next day or two. It’s usually the second day that is the kicker.
Being consistent with my sleep is the key. I vary a bit with my sleep on the weekends, staying up a bit later on Friday, but still getting 8-9 hours. It is just something I find valuable to me.
How about you? Is the only time you get the proper amount of sleep when you are sick? Do you think this might be an issue? Do you have a bedtime?

Slow and Steady 28 Days.

28 Days Later… sounds like a story of rehab, or an addict right?  4 weeks have passed since I started on Nutrisystem.  I am still alive, I have not quit.  I have not found it particularly difficult to stay on plan.

While I do miss the endless hours I used to have cooking, prepping, basically having a huge romantic relationship with my food, this is good therapy for me.  I still have to do some work in the kitchen.  I add food to my meals, you need to.  I am still pressed for time and do things like add yogurt or a hardboiled egg as my protein most of the time but when it comes to adding veggies, I get to show my love for myself with them.  I get to chop and saute, steam and prep them as I would have before.  I don’t just slop things on a plate, or pop them in the microwave.  After all this is still about more than just food right?  This is about a lifelong relationship with food and how it effects everything in life.

I am working to become more aware of all things related to what is going on.  What triggers me to want to eat, is it emotional, physical, is it the taste of something, a smell, is it just the sight of something that I can’t handle?  Hedonic hunger was something that spoke about at weight watchers, meaning it isn’t about will power, and I believe very strongly that this is true. Chemically there is too much going on in bodies for us to be able to deny something our hormones chemically are telling us to want.

So how has it been going otherwise? Pretty well, I am back on antibiotics, for another sinus infection, which i suspect is actually bronchitis :/ I have a CT scheduled for the 19th followed immediately by a consult with the ENT specialist that I have been seeing. So I am currently on activity restrictions which makes me anxious. I had just gotten back into a routine/rhythm that was working for me at the gym. It feels like every time I get into a patterns the rug gets pulled out from under me. I won’t let it stop me, I finish the meds next Saturday, which means Sunday morning I am coming for you Gym! YOU HEAR THAT!!!! I don’t however know how my body is going to handle all the antibiotics, steroids, and cough meds currently being thrown at it.

I weigh in once a week, Tuesday nights, in my kitchen. I thought about making it some morning, before I ate, before I did anything the problem is that if I weigh in up, and I can’t get my head out of that crud it was a bad week spot then my whole day would be shite! I don’t need that.

According to my calculations I lost 11.5 pounds from my Aug 12th weigh in to my Sept 3rd weigh in. I received my new box of food in the mail this week, first part on Wednesday, second box (frozen on dry ice) on Thursday and in the box on Wednesday was something called a Nutribear!

Nutribear 10 pound Loss

Nutribear 10 pounds!

10 Pound

Number 10

I love that there are cute rewards for having lost weight with the system. It makes it feel a little less alone, and a little more like a community. He is about the size of any beanie baby. I am not sure what I am going to do with him yet, right now he is sitting next to my bed.
I never made it through any of Weight Watchers things long enough to get any real bling. I got the 16 week stay an succeed hands, I got that danged 5% reward sticker a few times… up down up down…. it just wasn’t the right program for me. I did a 5k but never got the bling. It isn’t really about the rewards, but it is nice to have something saying hey good job right? Maybe? …

So uhm, I went to another PriorFatGirl #OBOS meeting this weekend. I am sure you are wondering why I bothered if I am on Nutrisystem right? Well we all know I won’t be eating out of a box forever. I had a great time hearing about #PFC Protein Fat and Carbs. It is basically how I ate before I took my fulltime job, which is awesome! Cassie talked about how EATING FAT WILL NOT MAKE YOU FAT!!! Something I have known for ages. She encouraged the attendees to eat real food, like butter, cream, cheese, whole veggies and fruits, meat, eggs, and nuts. Eating a combination of protein fats and carbohydrates at each meal keeps your blood glucose levels stable. It was pretty much a flashback to the early 90’s for me actually when I was learning about how to help manage my brothers diabetes (not type2) in getting him through the night with a stable balanced sugar level by putting enough fat with the carbs to keep things from spiking too fast and how the body breaks down protein slower and it helps regulate sugar levels.
It made me want to go back to school for nutrition… alas time and money are always factors. 😦 It was so great to see familiar faces, and new ones too. I was pleased to have gotten to stay for the full event this time. I poked my head in on the last one, which happened to be on the wedding day of a dear friend, when I had many many tasks on my plate. It was just not good timing.
It served once again as a good reminder that it takes time to get to where we all want to be. It is important to remember nothing is forever, and we all need to do what we need to do when we need to do it and with what we have.

A new week is about to start and I am doing what I can. Prepping what I can in advance, making the best choices for myself and reminding myself everyday that I am worth more than I think I am. It isn’t about Ego, it is about appreciation of self.

Nutrisystem huh… So what does the food look like?

So what’s the scoop? How is the food? Is it horrible? It can’t taste good right? Shelf stable… how is that working out for you… frozen dinners, why don’t you just buy lean cuisine? Well let me tell ya!

Overall, I have had only two misses as far as meals have gone for me, and one miss on the snack/dessert area. Not bad right? I mean, it happens when you cook too right? You cook something and it turns out bad… happens when you go out to eat, youorder something and it isn’t quite what you wanted.
I was excited at the prospect of Tilapia with Asparagus. As it cooked the smell went up my nose and just no. I tried a bite of the fish… YUCK, the spices were all wrong, I tried the asparagus, the rice.. this would not fly. Into the trash it went. The other miss was the Ready-To-Eat Hickory Smoke flavored beef patty. as I opened the package it reminded me of dogfood. I warmed it up, and yep, dogfood. Infact, I think I would not even feed this to a dog. Into the trash it went as well. The only other miss I’ve had was the Cheese puffs (a dessert/snack item) They are… just gross. I did remember to take a photo of them that I have attached below. I went into trying them with an open mind, however there are just some things that only the original will do.

I do have to say that one of the best parts about Nutrisystem is that it makes tracking, or getting back into the habit of tracking super easy. It’s very point and click. All the info is already there. You add preset amounts of PowerFuels and SmartCarbs then anything else you add you have to enter. So it really helps get back to remembering to track, and I feel like it’s kinda dummy proof.

Below you will find some photos of the foods I have eaten since I started. My friend Jean has been asking to see what the food looks like and suggested I share it with all of you so here ya go!

Turkey Sausage and Egg Roll

Turkey Sausage and Egg Roll

Ham & Cheese Omelette

Ham & Cheese Omelette

Turkey Sausage Egg Muffin

Turkey Sausage Egg Muffin

Granola

Granola

Southwest Fiesta Melt

Southwest Fiesta Melt

Spicy Kung Pao Noodles

Spicy Kung Pao Noodles

Arozzo Con Pollo

Arozzo Con Pollo

Mushroom Stuffed Chicken Breast

Mushroom Stuffed Chicken Breast

Mushroom Rissoto

Mushroom Rissoto

Chicken Alfredo

Chicken Alfredo

PB Cookie

PB Cookie

CheesePuffs (YUCK!!! AWFUL!!!)

CheesePuffs (YUCK!!! AWFUL!!!)

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Ice Cream Sandwich

Ice Cream Sandwich

Take a seat, I have a confession.

Thanks. *scrunches face awkward silence* So I have a confession to make.  I have not been completely transparent for the last bit on my blog.  Everyone knows that I have been struggling with food prep, meal planning and my schedule.  I have been hanging onto the end of  my rope.  I tied a knot in it, I am kicking my feet, using the tiny bits of nails I have to dig in and gain back my lost ground.  I have mentioned that just before fitbloggin I went for a bariatric surgery consult. I cancelled my followup because I didn’t have time with my job to do all the work that was required, meetings with therapists, and nutritionists etc.

I was also a bit taken back from my consult that the expected results from my surgery were to land me back in the 200-250 range.   To be fair they never know for sure where you will end up from a surgery, but based on how large I was, looking through my records he actually found a recorded weight close to 450(!) that my expected outcomes would likely land me at 200-250.  Based on my body structure, (large frame) and extra skin, and a million other things the idea of surgery right now has been shelved.  Back onto the options for a later date it goes, and refocused I go… but what is a girl to do? Give up? Continue to spiral upward in this new job?

I don’t have time to workout like I had been, for several hours at a time, nor do I have time to cook my meals at home everyday.  Not from scratch, not the way I used to.  I also have that wonderful compulsion that kicks in when I start with the foodscale again.  Calculating calories down to the gram of foods… not healthy.  I love my shakes, but that can’t be healthy, I am not getting veggies, or fiber for that matter at those meals…

About the first week in August I was reaching my breaking point… knowing that I can’t continue on the way things are.  My body is in pain, my stamina is suffering, my mental state is… well just yeah… it’s just not great.  I sat down with Robb and looked at options.   I was packing my lunch everyday for work, but it wasn’t always healthy.  I was kinda planning dinner, but we weren’t sticking to it.  Things were slipping away.  Portions were starting to get out of control, and he just wanted things to be easier for me.  He was supportive of me doing whatever I need to do to be successful.

I researched the different options available, sadly a few of the prepackaged food delivery services that I looked into aren’t available in Minneapolis.  *wahwah*  I looked into Seattle Sutton, I know several people who have used their meal services with great success and have truly enjoyed the foods.  With them you pick it up twice a week and have no control over the foods that you get, it is a preset menu that from what I am told is on a six-week rotating cycle.  I have a few food allergies and sensitivities and the lack of ability to control what I am eating kind of turns me off to this plan.  What I like about this idea though is that it is fresh food not frozen.

The other option that I researched was the Nutrisystem plan.  Please don’t give me that look ok, a lot seems to have changed since your grandmother tried it!  There are two sides to Nutrisystem these days, frozen and shelf-stable.  You can customize what you want to receive in your plan, there is a wide variety of things from breakfast burritos, waffles, or cereal for the morning, pasta, sandwiches, or bars for lunch and tons of options for dinner, stuff like stuffed chicken breast!  You even get dessert/snack options things like icecream sandwiches or popcorn.

As someone that never really knows what they want to eat until the day of, and being able to avoid things that I can’t eat (like walnuts) Nutrisystem seemed like a better fit.  I placed my order online through the web, waited for the shipping confirmation and the shelf stable stuff arrived on Tuesday the 13th of August.  I started that night.  The plan is pretty dummy proof, it tells you how much of what to add… add “power fuels” to breakfast, morning snack, and lunch these are things like an egg, a yogurt, lean chicken, that sort of thing.  I can also still have my shake as a power fuel with breakfast if I like.  You also add a SmartCarb to your afternoon snack, and dinner.  It tells you how much of the suggested things to add, these are designed to sustain your energy a bit longer, so things like a banana, corn, green peas.  Veggies are “unlimited” just like many other plans, but still counted and tracked.  I add veggies to just about every meal, for example if lunch is the cheesy mashed potato cup I add broccoli to it.  YUM!

So Tuesday (the 13th) marked a week since my initial weigh in, which I did at night, after eating and drinking normally during the day.  I weighed in up about 74 pounds from my lowest weight.  It was a true blow to my system, but I know why it happened.  There are a million reasons, and excuses.  Most of them related to my current employment status.  50+ hours a week, with no breaks for lunch, or fresh air, at a desk does not a healthy lifestyle make.

I weighed in again on Tuesday the 20th, after a full day of eating normally and hydrating etc and was surprised to find that my weight has gone down.  2.7 pounds lost on the first week.  I am expecting far smaller losses in the subsequent weeks, as that is generally the trend a big loss the first week and them smaller losses along the way but I’ll take it.

Along with the diet changes I am pushing the gym aspect of things.  I am forcing myself into the gym for three 30 min cardio sessions a week.  I don’t have to like it, I just have to do it, and on the heels of my half marathon announcement I NEED to do it.  I also need to learn how to use the weight machines at the gym.  I am so intimidated by them, but I want to use them, and I don’t want to look like an idiot doing it, so perhaps I will invest in a personal trainer session or two.

So yeah, I am sorry for not being more transparent with y’all.  It was a hard decision for me to come to that I needed to switch to a pre-packaged meal service for now but I just need one less thing to focus on.  I guess I am just looking at it as one more tool in my toolbox, not a forever fix but as a temporary helper until I can gain some momentum back.

Have any of you done a prepackaged meal system?  Nurtrisystem? SeattleSutton? HelloFresh? I am sure there are about a million of them out there, what is your experience with them.  Have you ever thought about it?  I will be documenting some of the successes and Fails as far as my opinions on the foods I taste.  So far all but one of the foods have been great! Just remember the opinions are my own, results may vary, and no they aren’t paying for this, and have no idea I plan on writing about it.

Hop on the Big Train.

So lately I have been struggling with food.  This should not be a surprise.  One has to struggle with one component or another right?  Things are never easy going in the land of health and wellness.  I love to cook, I find it so fulfilling, extravagant dinners, thousands of calories, food is love right? … yeah… I thought so. I don’t even mind healthy cooking, grilling, stir-frys, broiled seafood, YUM! However I live in a tiny little apartment… the only grilling I do is on a Cuisine Art griddle thing, my stove is a disaster, I don’t have tons of counter space, and I am fairly certain that one of these days my fridge is going to die.  I miss having a huge kitchen like where I grew up, I hate having to decide what to make day after day.  So many things look so good, but I just lack energy most of the time.  Worse than any of that is the dishes! I hate doing dishes.

So for now I am hopping on the Big Train… shake wagon that is.  No this isn’t a paid advertisement, heck I don’t even know what it is going to do for the scale since I haven’t weighed in in at least a month.

I have had a lot on my mind.  I have been consulting my various options, I had a WLS surgery consult before I went to fitbloggin.  I am undecided what I want to do with that road.  I opened the door, and it’s there.  A place to be explored, a tool, one I may need as my hunger is often uncontrollable.  The surgeon looked at my files, found my highest weight was actually closer to 450 than 430.  :/ Either way, my expected outcome if I had WLS would land me in the 200-250 range… which is where I was before I took my current job.  But I was barely there… 245-250 starving, working out like a maniac, scale not budging, trying sooo hard… If nothing else that consult was a wake up call that I have unrealistic expectations of getting below 200 pounds because of how big I was.  It doesn’t mean I can or will give up.

I met with a nutritionist just before that consult, she said my eating looks like it is spot on, my exercise when I do it is great, things will be slow but I will get to where I was.  So right now I am working on my 1200-1500 calories a day goal where I was before, working on getting in my water, and vitamins.  Focusing on protein and fiber and getting exercise, and finding balance.  I wish things were easier, I am trying to listen to my body, learn the signals for hunger, learn the difference between hunger and thirst, learn where my limits are physically again.  I want to get back to having my life in my control instead of feeling like I am floating along or being pushed.

So for right now my meal planning feels a lot like Slim Fast, :/ not that I am loving that but it makes things easy.  I have an 8oz Big Train first thing in the morning, my faves are the Big Train Campfire Mocha (made with Sugarfree Smores Syrup) but I also have Raspberry & Coconut syrups that rock in the Mocha shakes as well.  I have a 3lb bag of the Vanilla that just arrived yesterday, right now I am sipping on a Vanilla raspberry hazelnut shake.

I have a morning snack, somewhere in the neighborhood of 150 calories, give or take… sometimes a granola bar, or a greek yogurt, today 2 hardboiled eggs.  Lunch is another shake, this one is a 16 oz, more of the same, powder, syrup, water, ice.  I try and finish 2 liters of water during the day, usually carbonated, flavored if it needs to be.

Dinner, well… you know that meme where breakfast and lunch are all normal and dinner is out of control… that’s sort of what my life is like… but having my day mostly under control lets dinner be a bit more relaxed if need be.  I don’t stress too much over dinner I have 800-900 calories available to me for dinner/dessert I have been known to go over at dinner but usually I am in control.  We are working on planning meals a few days ahead of time, this week there is shredded chicken in the fridge, Chicken topped salads, stir frys, salsa chicken I’ll figure something out for the week.  Trick is veggies with everything… and water… lots of water.

Back to basics… We can do this. The scale… well it can stay hidden I don’t need that stress.

 

Running on Decaf…

Hop in the time machine with me! Let’s navigate back again all the way to second grade and lets watch for a moment.  There I sit at the kitchen table, grumpy and groggy, sad, not wanting to go to school.  This is the year I cut my hair at school, lied about it, got into trouble for it.  I refuse to eat breakfast and it is the morning of the CTBS test, this is the standardized testing for the state.  This is the morning I get a small Peter Rabbit mug full of the blood of life, coffee.

Wayne’s World wavy lines, fast forward…. by the end of high school I would drink a cup before school, take one with me, and continue to fill my coffee mug throughout the day from the faculty pot.  I was downing something like 17 cups a day.  Water… what does that mean I existed on coffee and caffeine free diet coke.  I was forced off coffee, or moreover caffeine when I had my nervous breakdown and went into treatment for my depression in the hospital.  Caffeine is a drug and I was abusing it.

I had a coffee pot next to my bed when I lived with my now ex husband, there was pretty much constantly coffee available I drank it he didn’t.  He was into Mountain Dew and Southern Comfort.  When I saw the bad habits and behavioral patterns emerging that reminded me of how I was back in high school I went off coffee again, cold turkey.

So now I am a real adult, not that I wasn’t when I was married, but seriously I was still a child, I was still too young.  I live in the big city, I know I LOVE coffee.  I have used coffee as a crutch since I moved here.  When I would stay up for 2 or 3 days at a time working nights and trying to have some kind of life, swapping shifts to make social events, I would drink coffee like no one should.  I enjoy the flavor, the subtle differences in different blends, I enjoy savoring a cup of coffee.

Coffee cupI was bringing a mug (5cup home-brewed pot) with me every day to work in the morning, when you get up at 3am to work a 10 hour shift, plus prep time for your shift, and then have someone who isn’t quite on time EVER that is your relief it turns into a 10.5 hour day 5 times a week, coffee seems like it should be a part of the day.  I recently decided, about the time I gave up gluten and my stomach was being so horrible, that perhaps that much coffee was not a good idea.  I have been cutting back my coffee consumption significantly.  No more caffeine, and also no coffee until I have had a liter of water in the morning.  It is supposed to be really good for your skin to have water first thing in the morning, Can’t hurt to start the day with water right?

Have I noticed a change in the no caffeine role in my life yet?  Well, truth is I still have had a bit of caffeine here and there.  There is a small pack of 7.5 ounce cans of coke zero in my work fridge for the simple reason that on occasion my headaches are bad enough that I need the caffeine to make the pills work better.  I want to not be dependent on the caffeine, and while I know a decaf Americano still has a small amount of caffeine in it, I am certain that it is significantly less than what the quad shot tall had.  I still plan on drinking coffee, but only in moderation, not every day.  Like I said I enjoy the flavor, and that is what I am going to focus on, enjoying the flavor of the coffee, sipping not gulping, swirling not chugging.

Is it realistic to think I will never have caffeine, absolutely not, I do not live in a world of absolutes.  I want to go long enough without a significant amount of it in my system that I can feel what kind of effect it has on my body.  So here I sit with my decaf Americano with heavy cream. YUM!