New Beginnings 01/25/09

The placebo effect is an amazing psychological happening.  It doesn’t happen because you make a list of all the wonderful healthy new things you are going to do, or the changes you are going to make in your life.  Making a list of goals is not a placebo.  I have a goal list from last year that has 5 goals.  I accomplished 3.  When I made the list I felt good but that feeling did not last like the effect of a placebo do.

No the placebo effect kicks in when you actually are doing something that is good for you and you automatically feel better.  For me it started with juicing.  I started juicing (finally) on a consistent basis last week and I do feel better.

I sleep better.  I have more energy and when the advocates of juicing tell you that you will be cleansed, they know what they speak of believe me.

Being that I have a problem with insulin resistance which means that I am close to being a Type 2 diabetic I do not juice fruits.  Carrots and beets have sugar and I watch how much of them I put through this wonderful machine.

However when I look at the amounts of veggies I have added to my diet I know it is more than a placebo effect.  I have tried all different types of combinations and I always go back to a tomato based juice.  It is like making your own V-8 without the preservatives. 

By the time I make my creation I have used 5-6 servings of veggies which usually yields about 16 ounces.  I drink it over ice because it is not really cold and yes I have to add a little non-salt seasoning but all in all I have enjoyed every single sip.  I did have to get past the funny colors-Larry said it looks like swamp water. Does not stop him from trying it though.

It will be interesting to see what my lab results are when I go for my 3 month A1c level.  That is a lab test that can actually look at all the red cells (which have a lifespan of 90 days) and come up with an average level of how your blood sugar has been doing.  Mine runs 5.4 which translates into an average blood sugar of 111.

That is excellent.  Normal fasting blood glucose depends on the lab you go to but let’s say for arguments sake 60-90 is within normal limits.  I test with a meter usually 3 times a week and I am well controlled with diet and exercise.

That is one of the goals I achieved from 08.  I said I would control this shift in my body with diet and exercise and I did.

Now comes the exercise part.  I do feel better after exercising – even though I hurt (still).  I do have more energy, I know I am helping my heart, helping to prevent many cancers, extending my range of motion, adding years to my life and increasing blood flow to my brain to keep my neurons firing as they should be firing.

However, I am a klutz in the gym.  I actually took Larry with me today because I do not know how to use some of the circuit machines.  He helped me adjust seating, weights and resistance and I took notes.  The neurons may be firing but it has been three years since I last trained for the Breast Cancer 3 Day walk and cross training is encouraged.  Of course I am saying to myself “Why did you ever stop?”  Who knows, I dumbed away that’s for sure.

I did not stop working out, I just used the treadmill here at home, added some Pilates, and free weights.  For the walk I have agreed to do I need to build more strength and this time the goal is to keep doing it.

Last time I walked we left for California on vacation one week later.  When we were hiking in Big Bear Mountain all that training helped me pace myself.  This year we will be heading out to California again – this time to San Diego and there will be walking involved especially at the San Diego Zoo which we love to walk through especially with all those hills.

We all know that diet and exercise are important.  Before Larry had his little heart incident he always said ” I don’t have time to exercise.”  Hah, was he ever wrong.  After his little heart incident he was thrown into cardiac rehab, and he is a good boy most of the time still doing all his cardio work outs.  That was actually Larry’s new beginning.  I just don’t think we should all wait around for a health scare to make us sit up and take notice.

Diet and exercise – three dirty words to many of us, yet three words that can help us all begin to take charge of our health.

I am here to tell you that you have to do it, no one likes it, well maybe some people do, but all in all anything the requires work is just that – work.  Nothing wrong with working at something to achieve a goal.  I am not a believer in bariatric surgery as a solution.  Going that route requires such monumental life style changes.  To me it just is not something I would be able to put my body through.

If getting healthier, leaner and meaner is on your list of what you want for 2009, you can have your new beginning, every day is a new beginning.  You just have to do it.  I know it is hard work, but the results are so rewarding. 

This is your chance to change your life-one step and one bite at a time.

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