January 2018 keto log

1.29.18 – I was feeling so poorly throughout December due to bad eating. I mean, I really let myself go crazy. Jesse learned how to make these AMAZING caramels and I made a ton of cookies and other treats. It culminated in an ambulance trip to the hospital because I felt like I was having a heart attack. It turned out to be something called¬†Premature Ventricular Contractions (PVCs) and doing some research, many people get them when their diet it too high in carbs. So after the new year I started back on keto. Technically I’ve been keto since January 4th (it took a couple days to clear out the cookies and treats from the house).

1.1.18 – 259 lbs
1.2.18 – 260 lbs
1.7.18 – 255 lbs
1.16.18 – 253 lbs
1.18.18 – 251 lbs
1.22.18 – 250

On the 24th I started fasting again with no set end date in sight.
1.24.18 – 252 lbs
1.26.18 – 249 lbs
1.27.18 – 247 lbs
1.28.18 – 245 lbs
1.29.18 – 242 lbs

Today at 3pmish it officially hits the five day mark, which is a new record for me. I was thinking I would eat tonight for dinner but that is weak me talking! I am reading all these personal stories of people who go 30+ days and would love to do that but mentally it’s such a challenge. I mean, five days has been hard enough! It’s not been too difficult physically but mentally it’s been a bitch.

I just *want* to eat. And it’s so hard making dinner at night for the rest of the family and not to partake.

I feel like if I quit, though, and I start to do another fast, I have to go through days 1-5 again, whereas if I keep going, I can hit days 6, 7, 10, 14, 21 easier since I’m already five days in. Also, I’m thinking that if I can just be a hard ass and shed 40 lbs in one month, I can return to keto and continue to lose at a slower rate and I’d never need to fast for 30 days again. I guess ultimately I’d like to hit 30 days (or more, you know I have the reserves) but I’m just taking it one day at a time.

I’m taking daily supplements of magnesium and calcium, and just started taking lite salt in capsule form to help with electrolytes and potassium. Some days I take more heart healthy supplements to keep my heart in check.

The boys have come down with colds and I’m thinking if I continue to fast for the duration I won’t catch their colds because the autophagy process attacks viruses and weakened cells so I may be able to bypass colds all together. It’s said that after fasting for three days your immune system is completely renovated. Hopefully there is truth to that.

1.31.18 – Best laid intentions, ah, well. I ended up eating that night. I broke my fast with some fries and nuggets from Chic-Fil-A. Definitely not the best thing to break an extended fast with but I was suddenly super hungry coming home from grocery shopping and just felt like I couldn’t go any longer.

This morning I weighed in at 242. My skin hurts from water retention and inflammation, which is unfortunate. Technically I guess I don’t really know it’s from water retention and inflammation but I have a sneaking suspicion that when I do another extended fast the symptoms and pain will go away. I guess it could be from something I’ve eaten that perhaps I’m sensitive to…something to think about, anyway.

Speak of, I am fasting again starting tomorrow. I’d like to go another five days (or longer) but as always I’m just going to be loose with the end date. Wouldn’t you know it, I just started my sourdough bread sponge/starter today and I probably won’t get to eat any of the fresh baked bread but it’s not like I don’t have more starter in the fridge just waiting to be woken up again.

Creating a food budget is not easy stuff

Trying to watch my youngest son play a Kinect game is frustrating as heck. He just wants to move around and bounce and completely does not understand the mechanics of the game at all. He doesn’t understand when I tell him he needs to move over, or to throw a ball with one hand and hit with the other. FRUSTRATION! And I’m not even the one playing the game with him!

Well, on to other news. The positive is that VIPKID approved my appeal and I can start teaching classes again. I still think I’m going to wait out the rest of the month and I think when I start again I’m only going to work Friday and Saturday nights. Those are China’s Saturday and Sunday mornings. I won’t be able to spend that time with Jesse and the boys, but it gives me all the rest of the week and I won’t have to get up early. It’s been so nice having evenings with Jesse after the boys are down for the night. We’ve been exercising and watching TV.

I looked around online and found a place for us to refi Jesse’s personal student loans and it’s almost a 2.5% drop in APR! I figure we can take that money and put it toward groceries and then any extra money I get throughout the month from online sales or notary services I can put toward paying down the credit card. What that means is *technically* I don’t have to work and we can still survive! Of course, I’d like to contribute financially as well, but we won’t go hungry if I have a short month. Huzzah!

I’ve been meal planning this past week and it’s been very successful. To date this week we’ve had steak and broccoli, taco salad, meatballs and spaghetti squash, and last night we had parmesan crusted tilapia, shrimp, and roasted cauliflower. Today was leftovers and tomorrow is brined baked chicken thighs and green beans.

With meal planning I can try to get the most out of the vegetables because I’m actually purchasing what I need for the week. I went shopping a couple days ago to purchase what I’d need for the week and it was $20 for the veggies. $20 for VEGETABLES! Eating healthy is expensive. Then again, it will last us the week so when you break it down per meal it’s probably not that bad.

We are lucky enough that we have a lot of different proteins in the freezer (and more coming that’s been pre-paid) that really it’s just fruits and veggies, and then the off type of thing like cheese or toilet paper. So in reality we could probably get by on under $100 a month for groceries. That is the plan, at least. I’ve never really had to budget for food before. It’s a new experience.

First post of the new year, 2018 edition

It has been a rough and busy couple of months, culminating into a hard last week of the year. As you know, I left eBay in September and was working a side job at VIPKID teaching English to Chinese kids. It was nice because I could work a couple hours in the mornings before the kids got up, but it SUCKED because I had to be up at 3am five days a week and I am a girl who loves her sleep.

The last week of December I was having a bunch of heartbeat irregularities. Enough that I had a doctor appointment to start the ball rolling to get an echo or angio to get to the root of the problem. I’ve had heartbeat weirdness since before college so the symptoms were nothing new but ever since I had cardiac arrest after Leo’s birth I’ve been more paranoid than ever.

At the appointment they did an EKG and everything looked fine, as it always does. She reviewed the echo from two years ago and my heart looked healthy at that time so it stood to reason that it was still healthy now…¬† We got the paperwork started for me to wear a Holter monitor for a month. It’s basically a small EKG that can be taken with you, small enough to fit in your pocket.

The holidays typically entice me to eat more poorly than usual and this year was no different. On December 26th I got up at 3am to teach classes and I felt ok. Not great, but ok. Around 5:30am I suddenly felt AWFUL. My heart was beating way off from the normal rhythm, blood rushed from my head and I felt like I was going to pass out. I called out to Jesse and told him I felt really wrong. I was totally freaked out. I had turned off my camera in the middle of a class and had Jesse close by while I finished it out.

I still didn’t feel right after that class and I was really freaking out so I decided to call an ambulance and have them come get me. During the ride over to the hospital they were like, your heart looks good, no issues here, BP looks good, too. I felt an episode coming on an alerted them and sure enough, the machine showed oddities. I felt scared but vindicated. They said I was throwing PVCs (premature¬†ventricular contractions) and that generally they were benign and just felt really scary. My BP also dropped a number of times during the ride over.

Once in the ER, though, everything stabilized and they let me go a few hours later. Mom and Jesse picked me up. I felt poorly the rest of the day but not nearly as bad as I had that morning.

Jim had just had a cardiac episode a few weeks earlier and has been dealing with heart issues for years, so we talked about supplements that could help, like magnesium, calcium, hawthorne berries, and bromelain. I started taking supplements that day (I had calcium and magnesium but had to buy the others). I also cut way back on sugar because for me carbs trigger heart palpitations, I already knew that. I also did some research and found carbs are a trigger for most people already prone to PVCs.

I had “no showed” to my last teaching class that morning and decided to cancel the rest of my scheduled classes. I just wanted to relax and focus on me. I decided to take off January from working. Getting up at 3am and going to bed by 9pm was causing its own kind of stress and I wanted to be stress free as much as possible. I got a notification from VIPKID that my contract was under review due to poor parent feedback (which is crap as I had a 4.95 rating out of 5) and cancellations. A few days later I got another email that my contract had been terminated. I have since sent an appeal. It’s not that I want to get up at 3am but I’d like to have the option, you know?

It’s been about a week of supplements and rest and I feel a million times better! I really do think the supplements have been the root benefit of helping. From what I’ve read, the body uses magnesium to help regulate the electrical impulses in the body and specifically to help regulate the heartbeat. It plays a part in breaking down sugars as well so the more sugar you intake the more magnesium is used up in that process and cannot be useful elsewhere.

I’ve decided to forgo the Holter monitor at this point. If PVCs truly are not life-threatening (and all signs point that is the case) and it seems like my symptoms are managed by diet and supplements, I should be fine.

I’m a little worried about how we’re going to supplement for that income I’ve lost, but we’ll manage somehow. I started a notary company Ultimate Notary Utah, LLC in October and I had three mortgage signings in December. If I can do at least six signings over the course of the month, we should be fine. So I guess I really just need to market the company this year. Wish me luck!