Free Times Two

I went Gluten Free yesterday. The plan is for this experiment to last a month at minimum. If it succeeds, and I notice a difference both in how I feel and how I look, I will stay that way.

I have been struggling with my weight for many years, but only since I found yoga have I realized just how much of a struggle it is. I have been watching calories and cutting WAY down on overprocessed food, going to yoga at least twice a week, and tossing in the occasional home workout as well, but I’m gaining weight. Not only am I gaining weight, but I’m gaining inches. I have developed the infamous muffin top, even in my work clothes. I can’t afford to go buy more work clothes, especially when I have car repairs I need to pay for, so I am dealing with the crunching up of my abdomen.

The allergist wouldn’t do a blood test for food allergies since an elimination diet would give me “all you really care about knowing”. I wish he was right, but I can say with some certainty that milk – more specifically, whey – makes me sick. For days. It’s very hard to avoid milk, but I have been limiting my intake of it since I was small. Cheese is my downfall – thankfully the harder the cheese, the less whey in it. Gluten is a potentially new culprit, but because many people whose opinions I trust can rattle off my symptoms from a thousand miles away like they’re standing right in front of me, I’m going to give this a shot.

I know GF isn’t necessarily “healthier” because other carbs and grains often move in. I am giving it a shot, though, and if I end up with more energy and less full-body inflammation, then great!

Cake Day at work today SUCKED, though. Just sayin’. And by the time we ate dinner after 9 PM because I was trying to make GF meatballs and pay attention to how I was doing it, I was in tears. I was tired, hungry, upset because I was presuming myself a failure, and I just wanted to eat. Those stupid meatballs kept refusing to reach 170 degrees! Finally we ate, and within minutes the kids and I had gone to bed. I hope my husband has better luck in the coming days.

Now – for the good news. I got another free private session yesterday when no one else showed up for yoga class. We talked for a little bit about my aches and pains (and the kids, and how our kids all had to change schools this year because our old one closed) and then she launched me into a crazy core-building, leg-busting, hip-opening, back-stretching sweaty workout. WOWZA. I felt like a newborn giraffe walking the block downtown to join my husband and kids afterwards. My de-whacked left SI joint may have re-whacked itself, though, and for that I’m so insanely grateful and excited…

One of the poses we did was a legs-up-the-wall modified pigeon. Holy cowpies, that actually burned a little on my left side. I had to reduce the depth of that stretch over time, but it was worth the stretch. Warriors are still difficult for me as well, but we did a few and I learned that not only can I do them (even though they’re difficult) but I can sometimes quiet my head in them from telling me to stop because it hurts too much. Of course it hurts. My quadriceps are jelly from years of the rest of me overcompensating for the pain in my knees. Forcing them to work isn’t going to be the easiest thing I’ve ever done. But in the last few classes, it’s become easier to hold the pose correctly. Other poses are coming to me more correctly too. Even if I’m not losing weight, I’m gaining flexibility. With my SI joint not hurting as bad, I’m hoping my left side will come back to the same flexibility as my right. And I think, I hope, I pray I’m also gaining strength.

There are really no words for how lucky I feel that I had the opportunity on my first gluten free day to have a private session in yoga too. She always seems to know when I’m starting to judge myself or get angry and frustrated with myself for not being “perfect”. I don’t know how – maybe there are tells or something. Either way, I think the Universe was trying to give me a little boost and help me accept myself a little more readily. Thanks, Universe. I needed that.

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