Eating for Recovery

I struggle with food.  I admit it.  I’m not one of those people who can eat whatever they want and not gain a pound.  I’m also not one of those people who can open a bag a chips and eat just one.  Or who craves only spinach and carrots.  Nope not me.  But I’ve really taken a good hard look at my diet in the last couple of weeks and realized that it’s kind of ridiculous to expect my body to do a good job healing itself while I fill it with chips, candy and alcohol.  Shockingly, these aren’t the staples of a balanced healthy diet.  So in the last couple of weeks, I’ve been slowly trying to make better choices.  The first was to eliminate soda and reduce coffee to a couple of times a week.  Those were actually a lot easier than I thought they would be.  Aside from the headaches the first few days, I haven’t missed either.  I still have coffee from time to time, but given that soda supposedly leaches calcium from your bones and I’ve suffered a few stress fractures at this point, it’s probably best that I just stay away from Diet Coke forever.

In the last couple of weeks since I got home from vacation, I’ve also started eating a ton more fresh fruits and veggies.  What’s funny is that I don’t really miss all the chips and processed food I was eating.  I’ve tried to cut that stuff out before and really craved it.  If I had to guess why I’m not experiencing that this time, I think it’s probably related to the fact that I pretty much cut out all artificial sweeteners.  Although it could also be related to the huge increase in the amount of water I’m drinking or the increase in the amount of fruits and vegetables I’m eating.  Either way, it’s been a pleasant surprise.  I don’t want to diet.  I’m looking for a sustainable way of eating and I know if I’m constantly depriving myself, I’m just setting myself up for failure.  While my diet isn’t perfect by any stretch (if I want some candy corn, I’m going to have some!), I’m making small steps in the right direction.  As a result, I just feel better.

So it seemed timely that Potomac River Running was sponsoring a nutrition series and the first one is: Eating for healing and injury recovery: Traditional foods that have been used worldwide for healing the body and speeding up recovery.  It’s this Thursday and I think I’m going to go check it out.  As I start to come back after this ridiculous never ending injury, I want to make sure I’m setting myself up to not only heal completely, but also to stay injury free in the future.  So hopefully I’ll learn some good tips from that.

My run yesterday felt great and I had hoped to run again today but since my foot was feeling a little achy last night, I’m going to play it safe and not run.  I probably shouldn’t run two days in a row anyway but when I have someone to run with, it’s hard to say no.  So this morning I’m feeling proud of myself for making the smart decision…. for once.  Luckily, I have a couple of friends who are willing to walk with me, so I still get to get out.  I’m headed to Whole Foods for lunch because a friend of mine was appalled that I’d never been before.  What can I say?  I live a sheltered life.  🙂

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