Monday, August 20, 2012

Mending - I hope

Been seeing improvements with this latest diet shift I've made.

My legs and the wounds on there that have refused to heal have been an issue for over a year now. The antibiotic pills and cream stuff given to me by the doctors helped up to a point (and mostly cleared it up) but after a while, that patch type stuff runs out and the original problem returns. In my case, it looks like it was diet.

That first doctor's trip did help in a very significant way though - the "diet" (actually antibiotic) pills had a fairly strict pattern attached to when I could have them : don't take one until 2 hours after food and 1 hour before food. With 4 times a day, that's 3 hours times 4, literally half the day when snacking was banned. Upshot - the habitual grazing was no longer an option. Going on that regimen for a week put the idea in my head "yes, this can be done".

Combine that with knowing that in the cricket I'd gradually been losing my speed ... and you have someone thinking that he can make a go of losing the weight. Oh - I'd also been seeing my most recent photos taken on a holiday. Best word to describe ? Chunky. I don't like being chunky and I definitely don't like being slow.

Result ? After almost a year of it, I'm down 1.5 stone (9.5kg) and I have all of my speed back. And that's not just straight line power, it's being able to dodge out the way when I have to. I still wilt in the heat (was hoping less insulation would help there) but hey - can't have everything.

I've had to shift that diet again though. With the stuff on my legs erupting again a week and a half ago, I figured I'd look up diet as a potential cause for the damage coming back. As in, was I giving my body the material it needed to repair itself ?

So - diet shift. I've added lettuce to the lunchtime sandwiches. I'm drinking orange juice regularly again (old habit that I dropped a couple of years ago), I'm taking vitamin supplements (as a booster). I'm eating green crunchy stuff in the evenings as grazing snack instead of cookies.

Trouble is, that comes at a cost in the early days of the shift. My head was definitely not right last week (think it's been more in balance today) with motivation definitely lacking. That's not to say I wasn't getting on with doing Stuff, I may not Want to do Stuff but I'll get done what needs to be done. Like the laptop, the contracts stuff at work, the desktop and all the other bits and pieces at work.

That balance thing also shows itself in cramping up - I ride a fine balance there and having the leg muscles I have doesn't help. That sounds kinda whingy doesn't it ? I can handle the cramp and it's a good sign that I need to drink something.

Other signs - you know when you get starving and there's a kind of conversation with yourself that goes like :

"I'm hungry ! Feed me something !"
"But I just ate, what do you want now ?"
"I dunno ! Feed me Something"
And you have no clue what the "something" you need is. You have an instinctive level understanding that you are missing something crucial but can't put your finger on it. By adding the Vitamin C rich stuff back into my diet, I think I've identified that "something". That'll help the diet too because instead of treating craving with cookies, I'm treating it with green stuff.

How are the legs doing with all this ?

I have this impression that there's thousands of mini workmen inside me all shouting "Yey ! He's finally giving us the stuff we need to fix him ! Let's get to work". And they've been patching up each broken bit in turn. Literally. The bad bits on my legs are in patches on both calves and above my left knee. Behind my left knee is also bad. Each patch started repairing after the other.

At the moment, I have a couple of fairly spectacular patches and my right leg looks like it got burned a while ago. But that's ok, cos it shows it's mending now instead of getting worse.

Hopefully the legs will continue to improve. As they are at the moment, I cannot wear my knee pads because of where the patches are. And that means no cricket. And no "warm up the legs" treatment when the cold of winter gets into my knees, as it will. I got bored of these leg issues last year and want smooth skin again.

I think it's time to close now before this post gets huge. Summary ?

Diet's helping - and I'm adjusting to it
Legs are repairing (I hope!)
Having leaner legs means I can see the muscles at play under the skin
And that's pretty awesome
I have speed !!!!!
Still not gonna be seen in public in shorts

What I'd really like to close on is - if you find yourself confronted by a need to make a wholesale life change, throw yourself into it. Don't look back, don't have second thoughts. Make that change. Whether it be giving up something damaging like drink, drugs or smoking. Or if it's needing to eat healthier or otherwise lose weight. Or change in circumstances at home or work (not something I'm usually good at due to inertia but when the change clicks ? I'm ok)

It'll seem hard early on but stick with it. It'll be worth it in the long run. However, I'll admit to being no saint there. I have had the occasional cookie and piece of chocolate when I've felt the need. I have one chemical addiction that I'm not willing to give up - caffeine.

Sometimes a little comfort is needed. I'm not so tough that I don't need that comfort munchie every once in a while. But as long as that long term plan is in sight - consider the chocolate or the cookie a treat rather than the norm. Try to be dependent on absolutely nothing. I'm not there yet, I have that chemical addiction to caffeine which means I get headaches if I'm too long without coffee.

And I am definitely rambling now - if you make big decisions like me with the diet, stick with it ! It'll be worth it. And I'll be remembering that tomorrow when I'm dodging out the way of people on the stairs :-)

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