Saturday, September 28, 2013
Hi there! Did you miss me?
The new steroids the dr. gave me have definitely helped put me back in remission and I'm starting to wean off them. Many of the side effects that I typically have on Prednisone weren't as noticeable on Entocort. One nice side effect is that I was able to eat some salt without the migraine hangovers (I still hang back just in case). One not so fun side effect is that I have been craving sugar like MAD. UGH! I've never been a sugar person, so this always perplexes me.
If we're friends on Fitbit, you've probably noticed my steps are much closer to 5,000 (if that) than 10,000. The steroids affect my knees in a couple of ways. They swell off and on during the day (food, drink, activity, you name it, it affects my knee swelling), which is definitely uncomfortable. I've known since the first time I was on massive quantities of Prednisone that it changes the shape of my body. The area around my knees is included in that list. I get strange rounded pockets behind my knees...yeah not comfortable. I'm not sure if it's skin, fat, or just fluids. Then there's the pain. It comes and goes, but walking as fast as normal just isn't in the cards until this latest poison is out of my system.
In changing my body shape, there are other places as well. My belly gets very round, my neck gets extra fluid, and I get two hard sore areas just below my bra in the front and back. Again, I'm not sure if this is skin, fat, or fluids. Thankfully, I know from experience that this will also go away within a few months.
I'm on Entocort for another 3 weeks and after that the fluid will start to leave my body again. What to do in the meantime? Keep on keeping on. Without a plan, goals are not reached. And having a goal of becoming the healthiest me can't happen without a plan.
1 - I'm going to go weigh myself & put it on my tracker.
2 - I've joined a local organic foods buy share program where I pay $36 a week for a laundry basket full of organic fruits and vegetables, so we will be forced to eat more F&V weekly because I hate wasting food.
3 - I'm going to start tracking again.
4 - I'm going to go back to my small chunks of walking throughout the day instead of just shooting in the dark.
5 - I'm going to start looking at the many exercise video resources on this site and use them.
6 - I'm going to get active on the site again.
Thank you for the kind messages, cheers, comments and likes you've given during this whacked out time. I truly appreciate it.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
This three amazing words spoken to me after my last colonoscopy were such a lifeline. "You're in remission!" I had looked forward to them for 22 months while I was poked and prodded, scoped and tested. I never thought to ask at my follow up appointments the question that no one with ulcerative colitis (or any autoimmune disorder) wants an answer to, "how often should I expect a flare?"
Those of you who read and/or comment often (aka my support system) may have noticed that I've taken a LOT fewer steps this week. I haven't commented as much. I haven't been as present on SparkPeople.
I knew first thing Monday morning that something was wrong. My entire body hurt as though someone had hit me with a truck. I creaked out of bed and eventually made myself go to work. I went to the bathroom...a LOT...and went about my day with no energy. Yesterday was a repeat so I took my Lomotil and kept moving forward. Today I almost left work at 9am (I got there at 7 after driving an hour to get there) because my upper back was hurting so bad. The Lomotil wore off and I had to take it again. I gave in...I called and left a message for my GI nurse hoping I had something else, anything else. My favorite nurse called me back and said she'd call my head dr with all my symptoms (nausea, big D, joint pain, muscle pain, fever...sounds fun huh?) she emailed me back (we have a great relationship) after I emailed her my temp when I got home (99.9). She said the words I was dreading all week...my PA wants me to start a new script...a steroid that was just approved for ulcerative colitis. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!
Steroids make me mean. Steroids make me swell (any sodium goes straight to my knees & face). Steroids make me have severe night sweats. Steroids give me insomnia (3 hours sleep tops).
On the other hand...steroids remove the inflammation and make my immune system weak; therefore, making my body stop attacking my colon...fun huh?
So, it looks like I'm back on the rice and water diet (to give my gut a rest for a while). And I won't be able to walk as many steps because it is just so painful. I will walk as much as I can, but running in the bathroom is out.
Friday, August 16, 2013
I had a few ďAhaĒ moments this weekÖ
1 Ė Changing the way that I look at goals, makes them more achievable. Iíve always known that looking at needing to lose 40 pounds is too daunting for my mind to wrap around. I know what I looked like 10 years ago at my goal weight, but just thinking about losing back to that weight makes me want to just go eat an entire container of soy peanut butter ice cream because the goal is so big in my mind. So I set mini-goals to reach my big goal. Iíve made lists. Iíve changed habits. Iíve added more fiber and water. I havenít lost the 40, but I know Iíll get there.
2 Ė I FEEL better! I feel like Iím moving towards something instead of just existing. Iím no longer just a slug moving from event to event.
3 Ė The more steps I get in a day, the less tired I feel during the day. That makes absolutely no sense to me, but I actually feel more energized with more steps. Sitting around watching tv or riding in a car makes me physically exhausted!
4 Ė I donít get enough sleep because I truly donít want to go to sleep. I feel like a silly 3 year old who fights sleep every night. In fact, Iím 40Öand fight sleep every night. I literally donít want to turn off the light and go to sleep. I realized last night that itís because Iím scared of what frightening things happen in my sleep. Or waking up terrified and confused of where I am and whatís happening. One night I woke up after just turning off the fan in my sleep in the middle of the night. My husband asked me if I had turned off the fan & it freaked me out quite a bit waking up like that & not knowing where I was and how to get back to bed! I made my husband turn on the light just so I could find the bed again. Other nights I jump out of bed due to spider/snake/trucks coming through the walls, etc. Good times! Now that I know about the reason, I will work on a better before bed routine to calm myself before going to bed to see if that helpsÖno pills for meÖI woke up in a burning house once and never want to be so completely drugged out of it that I canít hear the windows popping out (thatís what woke me up).
5 Ė Using a device for my step count instead of a simple pedometer makes me more accountable. I canít round up. I canít say that I did 30 minutes of active walking around the neighborhood (thinking I really did) when it was really only 20 minutes of walking and 10 minutes of standing around while waiting for the dogs to sniff things out. I also canít look at it and say, ďI had to walk more than 1,000 steps in the last 2 hoursÖmust be something wrong with the pedometerĒ. I now only add things to my fitness tracker that I do without my Fitbit, such as swimming, or strength training.
6 - Finally, I can't do this alone. My SparkFriends push me every day to do more, track more, and move more. They encourage me when I do well and lift me up when I feel like I've failed myself.
Today is a new day. What is behind me cannot be changed. Moving forward to see what realizations I can achieve next week is exciting!
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
So....how do you think I did yesterday with a plan of spreading everything out?
8-I still struggle getting more during the day...especially Taco Tuesday because I'd rather have beer than water with tacos. I did get in 8 glasses, but had to drink 3 before bed. FUN!
30-I woke up and did a few minutes of yoga...my body was NOT happy bending forward first thing in the morning. I wasn't doing anything strenuous, just sun salutations. I figured my body wanted to ease into it, so I stopped and finished getting ready for work. I didn't swim because we got home so late and took a rather long walk, but Fitbit says I was active for 137 minutes yesterday, so I was happy.
130-Ummm not there yet.
1500-I stayed within my calorie range, but I felt like I was over, so not sure what happened there.
10,000-Getting 600+ per hour was quite helpful to reach my goal. It made me more conscious about how much I moved hourly instead of just a couple of times per day. I still had to walk around the house for the last 1500 steps (after sitting too much for 2 hours at Taco Tuesday), but it was worth it and I made it to 10,000.
Overall, I was quite impressed with myself. I'm working from home today, so I'll get in some treading and laps in our pool this afternoon after we go walk around a few stores and libraries.
For those of you who want to join our 40 Somethings Walking Fitness Workout Team, here is the link www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
I warn you, it's an active team, so be ready to move your body!
Monday, August 12, 2013
You know what those numbers are, right? Goals!
8- Glasses a day
30- Minutes a day
130- Goal weight
1500- Calories (depending on the day)
10,000- Steps per day
It looks a little daunting, but you know what? With a little planning, I can achieve every one of them! The problem is, I haven't been planning. I've been just shooting in the dark & scrambling (or cringing) at the end of every day.
So, let's see how I can change that bad habit step-by-step...
8- I've been drinking 8 glasses, but at least 4 of those glasses have been before bed because I haven't planned to drink more throughout the day. So, I plan to drink 2 as soon as I get up, 1 as soon as I get to work, 2 with each meal, and 1 before bed (with my night meds).
30- for the most part, Fitbit has TOTALLY helped me achieve this one, so I'm not worried about it as much. I do need to get back to swimming more laps, so I'll plan on 15 minutes of laps and 15 minutes of something else (yoga, a video, dumbbell routine, etc.)
130- Well, that will happen as my body gets healthier and sheds the fat.
1500- I've stayed within my calorie range most days, so I'm happy with this number.
10,000- Here's the biggie. I TOTALLY thought I had this one in the bag before I got my Fitbit. I just knew that parking as far as I do from the door, walking up and down the stairs in the garage, going to the other end of the tunnel to get breakfast, walking quite a ways out of my way to go to lunch, etc. I was absolutely POSITIVE that I was reaching 10,000 every day. Not even close!
I have plenty of friends on Fitbit that taunt me and cheer me during the day (I can always use more!). LOVELYPAMPA started a new group for those of us in our 40s to get in more steps and other exercise. I joined the 10,000 step challenge in that group to push myself daily to get the steps. Unfortunately, I find myself running in my bathroom at night trying to get in the last 2000 steps.
So, let's break it down into manageable chunks to see how I can reach my daily goal because, let's face it, when you're used to hitting 7,000, finding an extra 3,000 every single day can be daunting! I'm awake about 16 hours. 2 hours of that is driving, so that leaves 14 hours to do 10,000 steps. I get at least 1500 steps walking the dogs at night with my husband. That leaves 8500 steps to accomplish on my own. So, breaking that down hourly, that's 610 steps per hour or 305 steps every 30 minutes. See, that's much less daunting than 10,000...don't you think? And anything above and beyond is a bonus! I love bonus days!!
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