It’s going down, y’all! The best part is that it’s going down even though I’ve been gaining muscle – yoga three times a week will do that! I wish I had taken pictures of my arms three weeks ago because they are noticeably more developed already. I’m on day 18 of my terrible elimination diet, three more days till I start the reintroduction phase. I’m grateful that I haven’t felt deprived at all, it’s just very time consuming. I planned on getting dinner from the Whole Foods salad bar last night after yoga, but didn’t get there till they were already packing it up. So I had to go home and cook after all and this bitch was hangry by the time my dinner was done. But it was healthy and pretty tasty. I’ve been grateful to even find foods to eat at restaurants with my friends twice. Well one food really: fruit. We met for brunch both times and I just had my regular breakfast smoothie beforehand and only ordered a fruit salad when I met up with them. If not for the elimination diet, I could get a green salad, but I’m avoiding tomatoes and peppers and a bunch of other things right now and that’s just too tricky. But I love fruit and I’m grateful for the opportunity to be social with my friends still. To be clear, though, I’m not gonna miss this elimination diet when it’s over!
Well I made it through my first week back on track pretty damn well.
– I rode my bike on my trainer three times at 10 minutes each. Tomorrow I’ll increase to 12 minutes and see what my arthritis thinks of that.
– I went to yoga on Thursday. It was a teacher and class I had never checked out before and it was terrible. As in way too advanced for my current fitness level. I made it through the entire class, but my hamstrings and hips were terribly painful for more than 48 hours following. I’ll have to work up to that class. I was scheduled to go to yoga today, but just couldn’t bring myself to leave the house again after running around a bunch earlier in the day. So I did a YouTube routine in my living room. Still counts!
– My food has been super clean. The only trouble is that I sometimes go to bed realizing that I probably didn’t eat enough calories and/or fat that day. We’re not going for starvation here.
– I’m doing a lot of research and meal planning regarding eliminating soy, nighshades and peanuts from my diet for three weeks. My nutritionist recommended a trial elimination of these foods when my arthritis calmed so much after eliminating dairy. I went to every co-op in the area looking for soy-free tofu and tempeh. I found a black bean tempeh, but otherwise struck out. I bought nigari, hemp hearts and cheesecloth and will attempt making my own hemp tofu this week. I’m still researching homemade tempeh.
– I remembered my supplements six out of seven days this week. Not bad!
– I’ve decided that I will weigh myself only on paydays, every two weeks. I need boundaries or I’ll be on that damn scale constantly! My next weigh will be this Friday.
Ok, so it’s only my first day of being back on track. But so far, so grateful! I did 10 minutes on my bike before work, easing in:
Biking is maybe the only cardio exercise that doesn’t make my joints too angry. When I was so successful with my weight loss in 2015, walking was my exercise. But walking upsets my feet way too much now. Since the winters are horrible here, I bought a fluid trainer for my bike so I can use it indoors in the winters. Bonus: I don’t have to break my butt in again in the spring!
After my 10 mins of biking, I prepped a few days’ worth of smoothies and supplements.
My breakfast smoothie typically consists of cannellini beans, banana, peanut butter, cocoa powder, hemp hearts, pea protein, baby kale and almond milk – all unsweetened and organic. My current supplements are Ovega-3 (algae oil), probiotics, vitamin D3, methylfolate and zinc. The first three supplements are self-explanatory, the other two I take to manage methotrexate side effects.
I had a homemade veggie patty, green beans and grapes for lunch. Unfortunately, dinner consisted of an Amy’s frozen black bean enchilada meal. I had a lot of back pain today, then developed a headache and didn’t feel up to cooking. But this frozen meal is vegan and has no added sugar, so I coulda done worse. Now I’m on the couch with my TENS unit. Like all the cool kids.
I’m reading a book about time management: 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management. I like it a lot more than I ever thought I could like a book on the subject. One of its recommendations is to theme your days: Management Monday, Product Development Friday, etc.. I read this chapter on a Tuesday morning on my way into work (on the train, not driving!), so I decided that it would be Unicorn Tuesday. Probably not what the author meant, but I liked it. And it was a damn fine day! Everything went smoothly and I was super productive! Not like Wednesday. Wednesday bit me in the ass. Nothing happened on schedule and a miscommunication with my rheumatologist led to my emotional turmoil (now resolved). I decided that the trouble with Wednesday was that there just wasn’t enough unicorns. Or possibly that there wasn’t a theme. This calls for some experimentation but I can tell you one thing – Unicorn Tuesdays are here to stay.
(This may be a catricorn.)
So I should journal about my psoriatic arthritis, I suppose. I started hand therapy this week! 🙂 I learned that my right hand is far more dysfunctional than I realized! 😦 The therapist had me bend my fingers in certain ways, then measured the angles of my joints. I had no idea how severely limited the range of motion of my fingers was until she had me do this. It was somewhat devastating. She gave me several suggestions on how I should hold things and open things, and exercises I can do. So that’s moving forward.
I also had an appointment with a functional medicine doctor. She’s an MD, but very holistic. I requested food sensitivity testing to see what foods might be triggering an inflammatory response in my body. I gotta keep that shit to a minimum, yo. Have you ever had food sensitivity testing? It is hella expensive! But I can’t really think of anything more important than my health for me to invest in. I should have the results in about four weeks. I’m excited and terrified. There are three foods that I absolutely cannot live without: tomatoes, peanut butter and bananas. Tomatoes are a problem for a lot of people with arthritis of all types, so that is concerning for me. I eat peanut butter every day of my life and bananas most days. This is what I have for breakfast at least four days each week:
- 1/4 block organic tofu (don’t judge)
- 1 banana
- chia and/or flax seed
- unsweetened cocoa powder (Rapunzel brand)
- unsweetened peanut butter (chunky)
- baby kale
- unsweetened plain almond milk
That mess is delicious!! I am praying to whoever may be listening that those foods are kosher. As it were. I had three more medical appointments this week: physical therapy for my left food and bilateral Achilles tendons, wellness coaching to continue working on my weight loss, and primary care. Because there’s no rest for the wicked, or the arthritic.
Here is some good news: I think the methotrexate is starting to help! Is that possible after only four weeks? I don’t care, I’ll take a placebo effect if that’s all it is. My pain level has been more like a 6/10, down from an 8/10. I’ll take that shit. Grateful!
I have a head cold. My first cold since my PsA diagnosis. I’m hoping it’s no worse than a typical cold – does anyone with an autoimmune condition have some wisdom about this for me? My plan of attack is the usual: good nutrition, lots of water, sleep, and a super hot bath to induce a good sweat. I made a veggie soup to feed my soul. My soul loves that shit.