Friday, August 28, 2015


I made it to about day 32 of my Whole30: Project Wedding before we had a cheat meal. It was totally worth it. We went to Dogs 'n Frys for dinner Sunday night and it was delicious. First of all, they have TURKEY corn dogs. So I always get a corn dog. Second, they not only have turkey bacon but also TURKEY PEPPERONI. And let me tell you, as a person who is not a pepperoni fan, I actually liked this. So I got a loaded pizza corn dog with loaded fries to go with it. Like I said: Worth. It.  

I'd say I'm still eating paleo 90-95% of the time if not more. I did start having smoothies for breakfast a few days a week. They're a little less harsh on my stomach than my standard eggs and sausage were. [Starting to think I may have an egg sensitivity...] Tonight I had some tortilla chips with melted cheese. 

With both of these "cheat meals" (or whatever you want to call them), I did not have any immediate reaction. Of course I do pay for eating this way eventually. It's just baffling that when I eat healthy foods/foods I'm not sensitive to, my stomach gets upset almost immediately. But then I have something like this and--nothing. IBS would be slightly more tolerable if it was at least consistent. 

Two weeks from tomorrow I'll be getting married! I thankfully don't have much left to do. Just a few little things. I'm trying really hard not to worry or stress. It's. So. Hard. That's what she said. 

Although I'm really excited/nervous/anxious for the day itself, I'm also extremely excited for everything that comes after it. There are so many things we've been putting off until after the wedding and I'm ready to get started on those! And I can't wait to get back into freelancing. [And having the time and energy to take on those projects.]

I will also be glad once I can go to the doctor. I'm planning on seeing a specialist about all of my stomach issues sometime after the wedding. Pretty sure the next step is a colonoscopy (yuck). I've been keeping a journal of literally everything that goes in and out of my body. I want to be able to show whatever doctor I see that I have changed my diet and cut out foods I'm sensitive to and I'm still not seeing any improvements. It's time to move on to whatever the next step is because eliminating gluten and dairy has made almost no difference. And, from my experience, that's almost always they first thing they suggest. Been there. Done that.

I realize IBS can be made worse with stress, and there are few things more stressful than planning a wedding, so I'm sure that's not helping. But I'm not expecting a huge improvement in my symptoms after the wedding. And let me tell you, trying to follow a strict diet is kind of stressful too. Food has been the source of several arguments in our house. Mainly we get tired of eating the same things over and over again, but have a really hard time finding new and delicious (but also incredibly easy) meals to eat. 

I really need to do some yoga. We don't have class again until the Wednesday night before the wedding (which I'm not sure I'll make it to). Probably a good thing with all the things I have to do in the evenings over the next two weeks, but I miss it. It's definitely a stress-reliever for me.

Right now, I'm trying to just breathe deeply and think happy thoughts about sitting next to my hubby on the beach ;) 

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

IBS is a Crap Diagnosis

Whole30 pro tip: Mindlessly eating healthy food in front of the tv will make you feel as bad as mindlessly eating junk food in front of the tv. Lesson learned. Always be mindful of what you're putting in your body (and how much of it).

Today is day 31 of my Whole30: Project Wedding and I have to admit, I'm feeling pretty discouraged. This is my fourth or fifth Whole30 over the last year. That's almost half a year of eating paleo. And for the most part, when I'm not Whole30-ing, I eat fairly healthy. I definitely notice a difference in how I feel when I'm not eating paleo/Whole30 though. I'm more tired, I constantly feel bloated, my clothes just don't fit right, I'm always uncomfortable, my eczema comes back, and I get a lot more pimples. One thing doesn't ever seem to change, no matter how healthy I eat, and that's my stomach/digestive issues.

I've been dealing with this since roughly my senior year of high school (which was EIGHT years ago). Back then and during college, I attributed those problems to all the junk food I ate back then, especially during college. Over the last year and a half, I've cleaned up my diet. In fact, the Whole30 helped me discover food allergies I had no idea I had. The hives that I had broken out in numerous times prior to that and during my first Whole30 completely stopped once I cut out beef and pork. To my disappointment, none of those food allergies were the cause of my stomach issues.

I had an extremely hard week a few months back and ended up at the doctor's office. I had to do tests and give samples (you don't even want to know how gross that is...and for those of you who do know, I'm sorry). The doctor's diagnosis? That particular bad week was probably food poisoning. But overall, I probably just have IBS. She gave me a muscle relaxer to help with the pain and cramping I experience and told me to "just take Immodium whenever I need it."

I accepted that for a few days. Then I decided that I'm an otherwise healthy 26 year old woman and I don't want to take copius amounts of muscle relaxers and Immodium pretty much every day for who knows how long. IBS is a crap diagnosis, in my opinion. And after our wedding and honeymoon is over, I will be going to see a specialist to get more/better answers. I will not accept that someone who is young, healthy, eats paleo at least 90% of the time, and exercises regularly has to take medication daily for potentially the rest of my life.

Frankly, it's just not fair. I started the Whole30 way back when to try to eliminate the problems I was having so that I'd be 100% healthy for our wedding and honeymoon. No one wants to feel like this on their wedding day, in a white dress of all things. And yet, here I am, less than a month before the wedding, and my situation has not gotten better. Sure, I now know a few things that definitely exacerbate my problems, like coffee (which I avoid most days, but sometimes, the need for caffeine is more important). But I can't seem to further pinpoint exactly which foods are giving me problems--if any.

I can't help but feel frustrated and disappointed. There are a lot of things I wanted to do before the wedding that aren't happening now (and really just aren't important), like getting my teeth whitened. But I just wanted to feel perfectly healthy on my wedding day. I didn't want to have to worry about how my stomach would feel that day. But here I am, worried about how my dress will fit. Will I be bloated? What if I have to go once my dress is already on? What if I eat the wrong thing at some point throughout the day? What if the alcohol I drink makes me sick?

Everyone keeps saying everything will be fine. And almost everything will be fine. But the likelihood that I will feel like literal crap on my wedding day is very high because that area of my life seems to be completely out of my control.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

I'm Back!

It has been an extremely long time since I posted on this blog (last post was over a year ago), but I felt it was time to start blogging again. I hope you’ll all still have me. 

When I stopped blogging last year, I was in the middle of my first Whole30. Since then, I’ve completed several Whole30s (currently in the middle of my 4th or 5th in preparation for the wedding). Thanks to the Whole30, I’ve discovered several food allergies which include peanuts, soy, beef, pork, and lamb. I found out about all but the soy allergy after my first Whole30. 

I went to an allergist and got tested and those were the allergens I had reactions to. They also told me that I’m sensitive (but not truly allergic) to gluten and dairy. I’ve had to make some pretty drastic changes to my eating habits over the last year (and Chris has been incredibly supportive, even when I breakdown and cry because I can’t eat “normal” food) and I also started getting weekly allergy shots which are supposed to help alleviate my seasonal allergies. 

On top of all that, we bought a house, we've been planning our wedding (which is happening in one month!!!), I was promoted to a copywriter position and then laid off a few months later, found a new job as a teller at a bank, and did some freelance editing (and loved it). I took on a little more than I could handle this close to the wedding, so I had to take a hiatus from doing any more freelancing until after we come back from the honeymoon. In spite of all the changes, I’m doing my best to keep it together. 

I started doing yoga earlier this year and I’ve noticed a lot of changes—physical and mental. Physically, my asthma and flexibility have improved, and my upper back/shoulder pain is almost nonexistent. Mentally, I’ve learned the values of self-care. I know when I need to take a break or say no to something, and for the most part, I’m actually doing it. I’m working hard to be patient and more calm in life (still working on that road rage though…). Mostly, since I started doing yoga, I feel much happier. 

I finally started running again too. On Sunday I tripped and fell for the first time on a run (surprisingly). Scraped up my knee and hand and landed on my hip hard. I was only a mile in to my run, and luckily I had just run past my parents’ house. So I got up and ran back to their house. My mom helped clean up my cuts and scrapes and I went back out to finish my run. And it was the best run I’ve done probably ever. I ran 5 miles and my pace was under 10 minutes the entire time! I felt so proud and accomplished after I completed that run. Maybe it had something to do with the adrenaline from getting hurt, or maybe my Whole30 “tiger blood” finally kicked in. Either way, it felt incredible. I’ve started running with a Flipbelt, so be on the lookout for a review on that soon! 

This past year has been a crazy whirlwind. Unfortunately, I’m still having a lot of the digestive issues I was having before I started my first Whole30, so I’m planning to go see a gastroenterologist after the wedding and hopefully I’ll have some answers. In the meantime, I’m doing my very best to eat as healthy as possible and take care of myself. When my stomach gets bad, I don’t try to stick anything out anymore. I just go home and rest (when I can, anyway). I don’t try to suffer through parties or barbecues anymore. Some nights I go to bed early and lie in bed with a heating pad on my stomach. 

I’m so grateful to Chris and my family and friends for being so supportive over the past year. I even convinced my mom and sister to do a Whole30! :) 

I can’t guarantee regular posts again until after the wedding/honeymoon, but I’m going to do my best!