I find myself in a place I have never been before. I’m usually depressed for at least two weeks when Christmas ends. It actually starts Christmas day, because I know it’s almost over. You see, my most favorite time of the year is Oct-Dec. I call it the ‘Trifecta’; Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. I’m prone to nostalgia, and love walking around ‘feeling’ all the holiday offerings that fit perfectly into the spaces in my brain the past has carved out. This year? Well, let’s just say this year’s holiday season was not without it’s challenges. As a result, I’m not depressed. I’m looking forward to moving on. It was not all bad, there were several good but ‘stretching’ lessons taught to me this season. It’s safe to say in many ways, I will never be the same. So I’m grateful for this time, and would do it all over again in order not to lose the treasure I have gained. But, for the first time in my life, I’m not unhappy to see January come.
And of course, with the new year, come thoughts of renewal and improvement. Eating for your health and exercising are often put on the back burner when dealing with chronic illness. Face it, not only do you have to deal with the usual fight against the ‘will’, but it damn well hurts. I’m not talking about the average muscle pain from underuse that accompanies the beginning of an exercise routine, I’m speaking of the unusual and intense pain that comes from ‘flares’ due to exertion. For me, my hips/feet/legs will hurt so bad the day after walking, and the pain wakes me up so often during the night, that I can only walk every other night. So, with Fibromyalgia/ME/Lupus ect. know that your exercise routine will probably not look the same as it did ‘pre-illness’.
~Go slow and at a pace that you feel comfortable with. It may not be the length and strength of the past, but that’s ok. You are doing what’s healthy for your body where you’re at.
~You may overdo it a few times until you find the pace that is right for you.
~Do not compare yourself to others! And do not let them criticize and judge you with what they think your exercise routing should or should not be. Keep your sessions to yourself if you’d like. Exercise is personal and for you.
~Eat healthy and satisfying foods. Foods high in good fat and protein will keep you satiated, and curb your carbohydrate cravings (refined foods/refined sugars).
~Pears: anti-oxidant/anti-inflammatory/anti-cancer, reduces risk of type 2 diabetes, high in water soluble fiber (good for IBS)
~Walnuts: anti-oxidant/weight control, brain health (see how they’re shaped?), heart health, reduce diabetes risk, good source of protein
~Hard Cheese: good protein source, good calcium source, K2 (for brain/heart/bones), keeps you satiated and cuts sugar cravings.
~Red wine (1 glass-always moderation): contains resveratrol (heart health/anti-oxidant), helps with bad cholesterol.