I'm into my 2nd week back of training, and things are definitely start to look up! I feel like since it HAS been nearly a month since making some great changes to myself, I can finally say that they are new habits. While I've never been one to skimp on workouts, I have been one to skimp on taking good care of myself. Since my blood test results, I promised myself to make the lifestyle changes necessary for me to get healthy.
The first addition was the doctor-prescribed supplement. I'd heard a lot about the side effects of a strong iron supplement (stomach issues, mostly), but the one she suggested to me is GREAT. It's actually a liquid pill that also contains two other vitamins for absorption. (NOTE: I hear people say all the time, "Oh I need to start taking that." WRONG. You need to get a blood test to see if you actually need a supplement, and THEN start taking what your DOCTOR suggests. For people with normal blood, a daily multi will do the job.)
Next, I've been focusing on my nutrition. In general, I'm a healthy eater, but not consistent enough. For example, sometimes I have to skip lunch and end up raiding my co worker's junk drawer right when school is out. Sometimes I run out of groceries and fix something haphazard with few nutrients. In the past few weeks, I've gotten into the habit of fixing my lunches far in advance (Sunday night fix at least 3). I do a BIG grocery shopping every weekend, too. I fix stuff that I can nibble on, too, in case things get crazy and I can't sit down. It's worked so far, no need for the junk drawer in a few weeks!
Hydration has also been a focus. I talked to Tracey (the SPED teacher that's with me for about 3 hours of the day), and asked if she minded me taking a few potty breaks. Of course she was totally cool with it, making me feel stupid that I'd been dehydrating myself for two whole years, LOL. I pack my water bottles each morning, and have been determined on drinking all but a half that I save for track practice. Bye-bye beer-colored pee!
And... I haven't had a soda in a MONTH! Yep, after 12 years of two Diet Cokes a day, I went cold turkey. It was something my doctor suggested. She mentioned a few side effects of soda, mostly that it could interfere with my energy levels, which we (she and I) are trying to stabilize. She also mentioned that the sodas could interfere with absorption of iron and other vitamins and minerals. So... no more. Yeah, that sucked pretty bad the first few days, but now I only miss them after longish runs. Weird, huh?
I've also cut out my nightly glass of wine. (I'm a real bummer, huh?) Once again, not for any *real* reason except that with my hydration being an issue, I figured drinking water instead would be the best bet. And now when I DO have a glass, it's a treat, not something I drink just because it's there.
And there you have it! All of these things have really helped me, and it's only been a few weeks! I'm really hoping to see the benefits in my running soon. The return to workouts has been tough, but a good tough- nothing that puts me over the edge, but a challenge. It feels good to work hard again.
More importantly, I have ENERGY!!!! Wheeeee!!!!! No more falling asleep during dinner. All my bruises have faded, and I don't have to prop my eyelids up with toothpicks during my reading small groups!