This past year has been a roller coaster with my health. From stomach bacteria, to a back injury that kept me inactive for almost 8 months, to an increase in anxiety and depression, to needing a steady regiment of Omeprazole for chronic acid reflux. I feel like my body’s been through the ringer!
I started to reflect on how I’ve been treating my body during this time, and if I’m being honest (which I committed to being totally transparent here) I have NOT been supporting myself in the best way I know I could.
So, I’ve decided it’s time for me to embark on a new journey to take back control of my health!
Today, I am committing to 66 days of taking care of myself both physically and mentally. This journey will start on May 17 and end on July 21st.
Why 66 Days?
I will be using a specific journal to document my food intake, physical activity, and mood along the way. The journal is made to last 66 days because that’s how long it takes to truly create a habit! The old 21 days, is just scratching the surface.
Why am I doing this?
Recently, I’ve been inspired by blogger and fitness sensation Cassey Ho, who embarked on a 90 day journey of her own and documented the entire thing! It made me think, ‘Hey! I should do that!’
Yes, I’ve lost almost 90lbs and have a health coaching certification but that doesn’t mean that my health journey is over! Just like our earth goes through seasons, so does our health - and let me tell you this past year has been a freaking hurricane season! I want to be open and real with you, sharing the triumphs AND the struggles, because that’s called being a human. 🤷♀️
Like I said at the beginning, last year I was diagnosed with a stomach bacteria called H Pylori. To treat it, takes an intense round of antibiotics - like 4 different ones, plus other medication like acid blockers - for about 4 weeks. Thankfully, I only had to do one round and it was gone, but this left me with my gut bacteria being COMPLETELY wiped out (good and bad).
Shortly after, I noticed consistent acid reflux to the point that I couldn’t swallow whole foods without feeling like I was choking. The doctor put me on a high dose of Omeprazole - which is an acid blocker - and I’m still on it 6 months later…...hoping to get off soon! 🤞
All of this made fed into my anxiety and depression, and caring about my food intake has basically been at the bottom of my ‘care about’ list. This means lots more processed foods, baked goods, sweets - you know, comfort foods! Which has led to an increase in body fat and just not feeling that great in my body.
I want to take a moment here to point out that I actually haven’t gained any weight. In fact, I’ve stayed within the same 3 - 5 pounds throughout all of this. So, to clarify this is not about weight and weight does not dictate your health status.
With the education background and TONS of self educating on the topic of gut health, I know the steps I need to take to heal my gut, feel more energized, and being in the best health of my life - but I’m not taking the necessary action. So, it’s time I regain control of what I can and decide to TAKE ACTION!!
What will I eat?
Okay, so for a LOOOONG time I was stuck in the diet vortex and tried pretty much every eating style before saying enough is enough I’m just going to eat without labels! So, I will not be following a specific protocol or eating style - just taking a flexible approach with some guidelines based on what I already know about my body.
Here’s what I know:
I have a severe gluten and dairy intolerance (for about 5 ½ years now)
I have a severe allergy (like need a benadryl/urgent care STAT) to plant seeds such as flax, sesame, sunflower, hemp, chia, pumpkin
I do not want to count, or restrict calories
A lot of processed sugar gives me stomach ache
Too much caffeine upsets my digestion, but I need a little
I like to cook, but I like it to be easy
I do best with a plant heavy diet, with some meat sprinkled in here and there
I like to snack
Eating every 2-3 hours is natural for me
I need breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up
I prefer to have a list of foods that I can be creative with, rather than follow a strict meal plan
So, what does that look like?
Seafood (pretty much just salmon or white fish cause that’s what I like)
Minimally Processed Foods (or not processed at all)
Oils (coconut, olive, avocado)
Legumes (lentils, beans, etc.)
Spices & Herbs
This will pretty much be my base, which is actually A LOT to work with! And as I record meals in my food journal I will be able to see patterns, and adjust accordingly if anything feels ‘off’. I also plan to add in things like a daily probiotic, and gut repair powder.
How will I exercise?
This is something I’m not too worried about because I already exercise, or move my body in some way, about 5-7x per week. I’m considering following a specific program through Beachbody, Fiton, or the Blogilates app since those are my go tos for workouts. Again, I’m keeping a flexible approach and want to have a variety of fun AND effective workouts.
I will be sure to include strength training, cardio, HIIT, yoga, dancing, and regular stretching in my routine anywhere from 30-60 minutes a day for 5 days at a minimum. ALL my workouts will be done at home, except anything outdoors or recreational - since summer is coming!
Again, I want to have complete transparency and vulnerability here so I’m sharing my before photos along with my measurements.
I will measure my weight and body fat % daily (my scale does a full body analysis, not just weight) and I’ll track my other measurements every two weeks, on Sunday.
May 16, 2021
body fat %: 28.4%
right arm: 9.75"
left arm: 10"
right thigh: 20.75"
left thigh: 20"
Using different ways to measure progress is important because I used to have an obsession with the number on the scale until I realized that it’s just ONE of the many tools that can be used and it has no bearing on my self worth or efforts.
What are my goals?
In terms of physical goals, I want to get to a body fat of 24%, which is the higher end of ‘fitness level’ for women. I choose this because I’ve been here before so I know it’s possible and it feels realistically sustainable for me.
It’s going to take a lot of work for me to get there, but I am ready for it and willing to do what’s needed (in a healthy way) in order to make it happen!
Another goal would be to safely ease off of my acid blockers. This is something that’s already been discussed with my doctor and will be done with her guidance.
To cater to my mental well being, I am setting a goal to blog daily about my experience as a way to reflect along the way and put my thoughts to paper (or computer). Again, this will be tough for me but at the end of the day I know it will be a huge help for my accountability and reflecting on my thoughts.
I also want to reimplement a habit I let go of after a year of practicing it, which is to keep a gratitude journal each morning. This helped me so much in the past with starting the day on a positive note, and prompted me to look for those moments of gratitude throughout the day.
So, there you have it - 4 goals in 66 days.
Tools I'll be using:
- food journal from Habit Nest
- fitness apps like Beachbody On Demand, Fiton, and Blogilates (for workouts)
- daily habit tracker printout (I like to check things off, it helps me feel accomplished!)
- meal planning printout (to post on the fridge and keep me on track)
- Fitbit watch to track activity
- 1byone scale to measure weight, body fat %, and muscle mass
- Daily gratitude journal (either a regular journal or the Start Today Journal)
How can you see my updates?
Like I said, my goal is to post a daily reflection blog every night! You can also follow me on Instagram (@katienoble___). I'll be sharing what I'm eating, my morning routine, workouts, and random thoughts along the way. If there's anything specific you'd like me to share, don't hesitate to let me know in a DM! I look forward to sharing my journey with you all, so thank you so much for following along. This is both exciting and a little nerve wrecking, not gonna lie. But I'm ready for it and ready to get connected to my body in a deeper way!