Sunday, October 7, 2012

These Are My Confessions

I have some confessions to make.  No, not these kind of confessions...but I do feel really guilty like I've been cheating on myself and my health...

Ever since our last trip to Tahoe, I haven't been 100% following my diet, and eating foods that I shouldn't be.  Not at every meal, not all the time.  Just little bits here and there. I have successfully added some foods back into my diet, but some things, like wheat, dairy and spicy foods, just don't agree with me.   

Like the time I had a cupcake sized cheesecake...

Or the time Dave and I split the nachos at Freebirds...

I didn't feel terrible each time after I ate one of these things, so I guessed that I would be ok if I was having these things occasionally, as long as they weren't part of my everyday diet.  

Over the past few days, I've noticed my energy levels were down.  My joints were hurting.  My pants were tighter.  I was stuffy.  I was PMSing badly.  Colds and flus are going around the office now that school is back in session and I was sure that I just had a touch of whatever everyone else had on top of just being a bloated, emotional woman.  

Last week was our anniversary and we took a little getaway back to Tahoe.  This time we rented a vacation house.  It was adorable and bits of it reminded me of my grandparent's house in Washington. 

The morning was nice and chilly, so Dave got us Starbucks (yay soy milk Pumpkin Spice Latte) while I cooked us a healthy breakfast of sweet potatoes, eggs, and pastured bacon.  We needed a hearty breakfast so we could go hiking later that morning.  

We drove over to Heavenly so we could do the last hiking of the season.  The calendar says it's fall, but the weather and the trees just aren't cooperating just yet.  I did find one tree that had changed colors, but it was right next to a perfectly green tree.  

I realized I forgot my hat and we stopped off at the ski shop to find one.  Isn't it so cute?  

I looked inside the hat, and noticed it had a saying inside.  I read it and just hung my head and sighed deeply.  Another random sign from the universe...a gentle reminder that I need to be pursuing what I love...and I'm not where I'm supposed to be.  

Yes, I already have makeup sweat on it.  Ugh!

We got on the Gondola and stopped off at the lookout point.  The weather was beautiful and there was a slight breeze.  Perfect for hiking. 

The sun hiding behind the fluffy clouds. 
Our traditional "hold-the-camera-out-in-front-of-you-and -take -our -own-picture" picture

Last trip, we hiked up the California side of the mountain, so this time we decided to hike up the Nevada side.  It was getting pretty warm outside, and I was having difficulty adjusting to the altitude.  My joints were hurting and I just wanted to give up a couple minutes after we started.  

The views overlooking Carson Valley were amazing.  I love hiking because you get to see some of the most beautiful places that you would never get to see otherwise.  

We kept on going up the trail and it was a struggle.  I was breathing hard, I was hurting, and I was exhausted.  This was so different from how I felt at our last hike up here.  Sure, it was hard, but I felt great, had great energy, and just loved it!

I was so mad at myself.  I had been doing so good.  I started feeling better, so I got too bold and felt like I could go back to eating things I normally did.  I was still being generally healthy, but I was eating small quantities of wheat and dairy and other foods here and there and it was slowly slipping me back into an unhealthy state.  

Dave was so sweet and kept asking if I was ok, if we needed to rest, or if we needed to turn around.  I was near tears.  How could I do this to myself?  I was doing so well and in a few weeks, I'm almost back were I started?  

One thing that may or may not be a good quality about me is that I'm pretty stubborn.  Today, my stubbornness was a good thing because I wouldn't give up.  I wouldn't stop.  I couldn't give up and admit defeat.  I kept on going.  

I took a picture at the end of the trail just to prove I finished.  I was tired.  I was sore.  It hurt to breathe. But I finished.  It wasn't a long hike, but it was a steep hike and the elevation kills me since where I live is practically sea level.  

After I sat down for a bit and caught my breath and drank some water, I  felt a little better and promised myself to not let this happen again.  I need to get my focus back and not be such a baby on missing out on food.  I need to not cheat on my health.  

I saw this sign on the way back, and it made me happy!  

We were hungry after our hike and instead of stopping somewhere and getting some junk food, we headed over to Sprouts and had a healthy light lunch and some fresh juice.  Fresh juice instantly makes me feel better.  As soon as I start drinking it, I feel refreshed and nourished.  

Sprouts is a cool little hippie vegetarian cafe that serves amazing, healthy food.  I wish there was a place like that where I live.  

I busted up laughing when I saw this on the wall at Sprouts.  

The next day, at the suggestion from a Heavenly employee, we headed over to the Visitor's Center to see the salmon spawning at Taylor Creek.  

It was another picture perfect day.  I was a little relieved that this ended up to be more of a walk than a hike.

There was some really interesting educational signs all along our walk talking about the Tahoe area and the wildlife.  It was sad to learn that after these fish spawn, they die.  

We kept seeing signs warning us about bears in the area, but sadly we didn't have the privilege of seeing any fishing bears.  

We made it to Taylor Creek to see the salmon.  The water was so clear and all you could see were hundreds of red salmon trying to swim upstream.  

After our little walk, we stopped at the Beacon, a cute little bar and restaurant on the lake.  I was good and avoided ordering anything I shouldn't eat.  They had amazing Rum Runners, and I think everyone should go drink them by the dozens (responsibly, of course!)

Later that night we went back to Heavenly village and had dinner.  Once again, I ate appropriately.  After dinner, we sat outside by the fireplaces and had an after dinner drink.   

We came home, refreshed, and I came home with a new perspective. I am attempting to participate in the October Unprocessed Challenge.  For me, it's much more than just a challenge to eat better, it's a necessity to feel better.  I already eat a healthy diet, I just need to remember that a night out, a vacation, or a fun event is no excuse to stray away from healing my body and feeling better.  

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