I’ve been reflecting quite a bit on the last year. More specifically, on the last two to three months. My awareness of my own health and fitness has changed dramatically as my focus has shifted. When I started this journey, I was all about the size of my jeans, the loss of cellulite and poundage. I wanted desperately to shrink. When I got over that, I moved on to events: marathons, relays, half marathons, Spartans, Dirty Girls, 5ks. I’m not over those. At least, not most of them. But neither are they the main reason for my daily workouts anymore. Now it’s about, quite simply, what feels good in the moment on that particular day. Now it’s about what feeds my body and my soul. It’s become less of a race to improve upon what I have and more about being grateful for what I’ve been given: strong legs, endurance, increasing flexibility, and a body that will tell me what’s best if I just slow down and listen once in a while.
To that end, I have become a daily practitioner of yoga and meditation. I run a few days a week, practice Pilates for strength. As I’ve slowed my pace, I’ve found an amazing place to be on all fronts. Which is great, because it allowed me to accept the recent diagnosis from my new doctor of natural medicine with a wholly different mindset than the one I possessed when I first heard of EBV.
While I did all right with the B12 shots, I knew they weren’t a lifelong solution. And EBV is a lifelong disease. It just is. That’s a fact. One I could certainly wallow in if I so chose, but I don’t. Instead, I searched out alternative medicines and approaches. I was researching holistic doctors and discussing the situation with my crazy awesome hair stylist when she spun me around to introduce me to her naturopath, who in turn found her path because she herself was diagnosed with EBV and frustrated at the lack of treatments presented by western medicine. (How was that for a run-on sentence?)
Coincidence? I think not. I think there was a little bit of fate involved.
I had my first appointment last week. And my levels are once again “off the charts,” because I’m cool like that. I have been officially diagnosed with CEBV (that’s chronic Epstein-Barr virus) – as well as gluten, wheat, and dairy allergies. Dust and pollen popped up, too, but they’re just little blips compared to the rest. What does that mean?
That I was on the right path with Paleo. It’s actually the perfect diet for me for the rest of my life. It also means that I can’t cheat anymore. At least, not if I want to pull myself out of the doldrums and back up to my amazingly high levels of awesomeness (to be heretofore referred to as AHLA). I’ve added supplements based on the lovely doc’s recommendations (B, D, various oils). I’ve dropped any and all processed foodstuffs. After the holidays, I will begin juicing. I’d start now, but juicers are pricey and we have four kids that still believe in magic this time of year.
I had my appointment Thursday evening. Friday, I ate all my “last meals.” I ate enough dairy and gluten to make myself incredibly ill. I gave myself a proper send off and on Saturday, I went clean. At the end of today, Day 3, I am thoroughly amazed at the difference in my appearance. My body has begun shrinking as a result of my focus on my health. Ironic, isn’t it? My abs miraculously appeared this morning and are still present and viewable as I type this. My general puffiness has nearly disappeared. And though I am definitely feeling the effects of the detox and withdrawal – some headache and nausea – it’s just further proof that I don’t want to start over anymore. If I can feel better, why wouldn’t I?
The Winter Solstice is a time of new beginnings, a time to leave behind the practices and energy that did not serve us and strike out with new knowledge and focus. So what better time to forge ahead?
Of course, the one drawback of this new appreciation and awareness is that marathons are a thing of the past. There, I said it. I don’t like saying it, but I’m not blubbering about it (anymore). The thing is, I’ve done it. Twice. And technically, I probably could do it again. But it wrecks my body, my entire system, for months after. And so it’s done. I’ve got my lovely medals. I ran two beautiful races. And now it’s done. Time to refocus and recharge.
Which brings us to the goals portion of this post. What are my goals for 2014? I want to keep sharing what works for me. I want to do a head stand and maybe even a handstand. I want to run the Grand Canyon Half Marathon with two beautiful gals and my hottie Hubby. I want to kill the Blue Mountain Spartan Race and blast through two Dirty Girl races.
Actually, “want” isn’t quite the right word. I will do all of those things. Because of my AHLA. It’s just the kinda girl I am.