Monday, April 2, 2012

Re Vamp

Been a while since I blogged, and that probably explains my anxiety and unchecked feelings as of late. I was going to save a post like this to one of my more private blogs, but I decided to share it on Fettle, because I created this blog to be about wellness; not just physical but mental and emotional too.

About a month or so ago, (maybe longer I do not really know) I started to feel uneasy, anxious, and just not myself. It was not anything specific that brought it on, though going back to school this semester totally made me nervous. It just crept in a spread its chill into my veins, like a spider building a web. My nightmares came back, and they became more violent and disturbing. I always sleep through the night, but rarely is my sleep peaceful, let alone restful.

I started to conclude that maybe I am out of check somehow with the universe. I know, hippy sounding right? Not knocking it for anyone else, but the thought of seeking professional help on a stuffy couch with some shrink who will most likely only write me some prescription that will only mask my feelings is not for me. So I sought other means to deal with my...well inward roller coaster.

I started practicing yoga regularly. This has helped, but not as instantly as I thought it might. Granted, I have been going regularly for only a month or so. Some classes I can get so in the groove and hit most of the poses like a pro, and other days, like today, I just want to sit in child's pose and not move or think.

I have also been meat free for 15 days. In my recent history this is the longest I have been meat free (since 2008 anyways). I am still eating fish, and VERY small amounts of dairy. Basically, I watched a disheartening video on some PETA webpage that made me cry (I was overly emotional that day anyway) and sick at the same time. We will see what happens with this. In the past, I have never taken the welfare of the animals as a main reason to stop consuming meat, but it feels right for the time being.

I also leased a horse for the summer. Yeah, weird right? I dont really know why I decided to. Just bored with typical workouts or activities I have been doing lately, and I really wanted something new. Plus it is a great way to connect with both nature and an animal. It teaches you to listen and direct. And it is a better butt and core workout than any zumba class.

Summer is approaching and I need to just relax and be grateful I am even here to enjoy this one after what happened in the last one. I'm just feeling so out of touch with everyone and thing. I need a new workout plan that refreshes me, not oppreses, and I need to engage myself in things that I believe are good. I really want to believe that the choices I make are the right ones for myself; now and down the line.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Go. ^

I know you all probably think I'm crazy for still stressing over calories consumed vs. calories burned while I am recovering, but there is a careful balance I have established here. You see, in the past when I have felt sick or hurt, it has always been my excuse to consume whatever my little heart desired. I justified it as, hey... if my body craves it I MUST need it to get better! Yeah... silly and unrealistic to maintain health.

So, with the help of the darling Mr. Rory O'Neill, I came across this supremely helpful calorie counter, which is conveniently an app on my phone as well! Up until my accident, I had only utilized it through my phone, but now with all this time on my hands, I decided to explore the website. WOW. This thing is legit great. I highly recommend it to anyone with internet access who is serious about what they put into their bodies on a daily basis, and how it effects them. I have set it up to maintain my weight right now, which is right around 124/125 at 5'7''. I know I should not be worried about weight maintenance ATM (at the moment), however by writing down what I eat each day I can make sure I am varying my food sources, eating nutritiously dense food, and timing my meals correctly. Food is the best medicine.

The other cool thing about this app/site is that you can plug in your workouts too, which will calculate how many calories you burn based on your weight, height, and age. You can list your activity level (sedentary, slightly active, active, very active) and what your goals are weekly ( lose a pound a week, lose 2, maintain, gain a pound, etc). Tracking myself during my "sedentary" time will give me a good idea at how my body functions and adapts to my varying activity levels. I'm  excited :)

Though I am listing everything I am consuming, and shooting for right around 1700 cals a day... I'm by no means being super restrictive like I have been. I can't wait to have either a coffee frappe from Peaceful Meadows later... or Pop secret movie theater butter popcorn. Or both. OMG.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Just a Day

Well, it is nice to be home from the hospital.

My bed has been moved to the den with a nice big TV, wii, and netflix. I'd rather not spend the next 6 weeks rotting in front of the tube, but its nice to fall asleep to and zone out for a few hours.

I've been pretty ok since leaving the hospital, and surprisingly I feel good. Minimal pain, minor stiffness, and I don't get so dizzy when I stand anymore. As for my spirits, they vary. Usually I stay really positive, which is helped by being surrounded by beautiful flowers, lovely cards, and silly balloons.

Today I had a dip.

I decided to be "brave" and remove the gauze and bandage from my wound. I know what you're thinking, "Elaine... you're tapped" but seriously, air does need to get to it in order to breathe. So I shuffled into the bathroom, and after about a minute and a half, I tossed out the last hospital-smelling thing attached to my body. My scar is a little bigger than I anticipated, and though I know the color of it will fade, it's a darkish reddy-brown. Instantly I felt super woozy, just like I did in the hospital when they asked me to walk around, and I'll bet my BP was a cool 80/50. Mom helped me back into bed and I slept for the next two hours. I woke up feeling groggy and annoyed. Rory had been at the gym for the last 2 hours, as was all my other buff friends. I went to walk out on the back deck, and you'd of thought I told my parents I was moving to Botswana. I know I need to take things slow, but I feel a little stir crazy right now with it being beautiful out and everyone else going about normal lives... and mine feels as if it is on hold the next 2 months.

I've also been freaking out about what it is going to be like out in public. Teddy's birthday is coming up the first of July, and we always have a nice family dinner out at a restaurant of his choice... Obviously I know no one is going to point and say "hey, check out neck brace girl", but I thought I had enough improvements to make on my body BEFORE this whole mess happened, now there's just something SCATHINGLY blatant on me. I know I am sounding so vain, and I apologize, this is very new. And very uncomfortable. But not permanent.

Later this evening, I felt super down; mostly because my incision felt super tight and just uncomfortable and
I just couldn't find the right position with my pillows. I started to mutter mostly to myself how sucky I felt. Mom was watching television while I struggled and told me a story.

"So I was reading this article in Dad's Sport's Illustrated (weird mom...) about this sophomore in college whole was an all star on his baseball team."

"Yeah... so..." I replied.

"Well, he was supposedly a center fielder. He was running full speed and smashed head first into the right fielder, fracturing his T-5 and T-7 vertebrae. He's paralyzed from the waist down."

After hearing this, tears swam in my eyes.

"I know you feel frustrated, Elaine," continued my mom, "but seriously just remembered how lucky you were, you were millimeters away from a different fate."

She is absolutely right. I am still blown away, as was every doctor and surgeon I came in contact with, as to how I left my accident with NO other breaks except for a slight C4 fracture and a severe C6 fracture... but with no serious repercussions? No numbness no tingling, no severe pain either. I do feel very lucky, and also very eerie. I've been giving this overwhelming feeling of a second chance, and I am compelled to do something bigger and better than I have ever embarked on before. I want a serious project to undertake or a new crazy goal to shoot for.

I guess I have plenty of time to plan it all out.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

"And to all my fans...!" rofl.

I'm going to write this the best I can before my pain meds kick in.

Tomorrow is surgery.

The doctors will take me in probably around 9 am-ish, but actual surgery isn't until about 10. The procedure involves them making an incision on the front of my neck, swimming through my little muscles, picking out my teeny bone pieces, and making me a  bionic lady with a new metal bone piece. Oh boy.

So today has been a day of friends and reflecting. I really am very lucky. Lucky to be alive, lucky to have the people in my life that I do, lucky to be where I am. I don't want this to sound like an acceptance speech or anything, but honestly I'm going to do some shout outs.

Mom & Dad- OMG. No words can explain. Seriously, everything I put you through, and all the support you've given eyes are watering at the thought. You are my biggest cheerleaders, my role models, and for you to say "we're so proud of you, you're so brave" rattles me to my core. You have always been THE strongest people I know, and you have set the BEST example for me and Teddy (Teddy and I?). Thank you isn't enough, and it's kinda crappy a near death experience makes you look at things differently but seriously, I'm sorry, thank you, I love you.

Teddy- Stain. Buggah. Wretched being. Seriously, you're great. It's pretty weird, and in my opinion neat, when a younger sibling can be someone the older sibling looks up to. Figuratively of course ;). You're humor is something I envy and admire. And I know we came REALLY close to almost being "twins" (this is gunna sound effed up to any one who doesn't know our humor)...I can't even begin to fathom up the strength you possess daily. How you look at life is inspiring to EVERYONE who meets you. You're someone people always want to be around and that's just so lovely (lovely, Elaine? Here comes the drugs...) But seriously, your facebook posts, and texts, and visit mean a lot. I never say it and rarely act it, but you're probably my favorite person. Ever.

Rory-  You're unbelievable. How happy I get when you come visit, how goofy my grin is when I see you've texted me, I feel like a middle schooler in first time puppy love, even after how long we've been together. You have consistently kept me positive this entire time, and made me excited to recover, eat nutritiously, and come back stronger than ever. Honestly, me blogging all of this was because of the idea you gave me. I couldn't be more grateful for you sitting in my hospital bed for up to ten hours at a time while I nap, groan and squirm, and try to not lose my lunch. Grabbing me ice cream, coloring books, magazines...the list goes on. I can't wait to embark on new, healthy, wonderful adventures with you. I love you for challenging me to be better, to push myself. I just love you a lot Chim.

My Extended family- Nanny and Grampy specifically with all their visits, braving horrific Boston traffic, but also my Uncle Jim H. and Julianne (thanks for the Itunes!), my Little Nanny for her outpouring love, My Uncle Jim S. for the fun visit, The Dodrills, O'Neills, and Van Meter's for the BEAUTIFUL flowers and fun gifts, and everyone who has called  (Carol Dowling, LOVE YOU), texted, facebooked, any kind of outreach. It has helped keep me very positive. I honestly chalk up my lack of pain and bright outlook to everyone's positivity. Energy is a powerful  thing!

Burtons Grill- LOL. You all are a real treat. Specifically Bonnie and Colleen and Cory. You're gifts and surprise visits have been so lovely! I loved my coconut macaroons, sunflowers, and plethora of magazines. I also love everyone's random cat-oriented texts, phone calls, and cards. I haven't been working there for dreadfully long, but I already feel like a part of a family. It's wonderful.

Friends- Darrell. Jason D. Peter. Beth. Catherine & Haley. Balboni. Nick & Bee. If I have forgotten anyone FORGIVE ME, I've been sleeping through most of these personal visits and/or phone calls. But facebook, as much as I want to be against it, was so uplifting. I love EVERYONE who wrote on my wall, messaged me daily, and followed my progress. Thank you for caring.

B&W nurses- You'll never read this, but I just want people who do read this to know the WONDERFUL care I received from nurses I'll remember always. Tanya specifically, but also Jill, Jenna, Amy... you're all very special people. Someone told me at the beginning of all this that "nurses are the servers of the hospital world" so I can relate and appreciate your attention. But you all made me feel so special, and you were very encouraging. Now let's hope my remaining few days are smooth sailing so I don't have to re write this. :]

So pretty much everyone who is awesome, which come to find out is just about EVERYONE in my life; I love you, thank you, you're great etc etc. More blogging to come filled with groggy medicated thought at first, then plans of action in becoming the next Jessica Putnam.

I had to re type that last sentence 4 times....Wheeeeee nighty night.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I think this blog will take on a whole new meaning.

Early Sunday morning, I was in a car accident.

I have been in the hospital since then, lying flat with a humongous foamy neck brace, pondering...ya know...things.

First day was tough. I hit my head nice and decent on my driver's side window (this was confirmed when I pulled a hunk of glass outta my ear yesterday), so consciousness was hazy. I got what feels like a hundred CAT scans (meow), MRI's, and Xrays. Low and behold my sixth little vertebrae can't hold his shit together. Sorry little guy.

Second day, I got pain meds that didn't make me launch everywhere, and it was decided that surgery was imminent, but when it would happen that's been ANOTHER story.

Third day they teased me with the hope of surgery, and hours of waiting and zero calories later, a late afternoon decision was made that, surgery for you. But Rory and my parents stayed with me all day and despite me being slightly out of it with my pain meds, we had a lovely take out dinner of calamari and fried peppers, fig and prosciutto pizza, and peanut butter ice cream. Too bad I fell asleep during our appetizers.

Today was an interesting day to say the least. I got a visit from a psychiatrist today.
We chatted about my accident, if I was having any recollections or scary dreams. We discussed the importance of seatbelts and of proper sleep.

Then she looked at me and asked rather plainly " Do you have any idea why you survived?"
I looked at her quizzically. How do I go about answering a question like that? 
" all honestly I never thought I was going to die... I don't know if that sounds terrible or not, but I felt fine the entire time."
"I believe that confidence will make you strong throughout this whole ordeal. You're going to be just fine"

I didn't have the heart to tell her it was probably my pain med cocktail speaking.

I'm a little goofy on meds right now, I'll update this more thoroughly later.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


I need to get VERY serious about my eating habits. I hate the extra weight I know I can lose easily off of my body. Plus, warmer weather is coming which means Mexico, California, and the dreaded bikini. EEEEE! So enough adding to my "winter layer" gross. Cardio, nine am every morning. Then, 2-3 hours later weight training. Bed needs to be early, my only flexibility will be if I am working late (another area in my life that needs changing). So, tomorrow...

8:15 am- Wake up, 16 oz of water 125mg levothyroxine.

9:00 am- Cardio 45 min

945 am- Veggie shake (spinach grapes spirulina apple) with 3tsp of amino acids added, 16 oz water

12 pm- one level scoop of pre workout 1.m.r., 16 oz water

1220 pm- weight training (shoulders) 16 oz water

200 pm- protein shake (whey protein skim milk ice banana)

300 pm- 2 eggs 1 egg white, diced red onion, spinach leaves, pepperocinis. 16 oz water

445 pm- work...

700 pm- grilled chicken breast, dry salad greens 16 oz water

1230 am- IF hungry, protein shake. (one half scoop of whey, 16 oz of water).

We shall see how this plan works out...

Friday, October 1, 2010

I Knew This Wouldn't Be Easy...

Well since I have written my last post, I tried to practice what I was preaching. On Thursday, I had some Cascadian Farms Pomegranate flax seed oat clusters for breakfast with blueberry granola. Though the clusters were a little high in calories, (220 for a cup with my skim milk), their fiber content was great and the granola had over 20 grams of whole grain! Best of all, it was delicious and tided me over for a few hours.

Unfortunately I had to work during the day, but I tried my best to plan my meals. I packed a scoop of whey protein powder(syntha-6 chocolate peanut butter), chocolate hemp milk, unsweetened kefir, and plain tuna with red onion, spinach, and black pepper. The hemp milk and kefir I mix to make a really tasty protein shake, which subsequently is PACKED with the nutrients from the hemp, and loaded with protein and calcium from both the powder and the kefir. The only thing I am mindful of is the sugar content in the hemp, 21 g a serving. So I try to do one part kefir to a half part hemp.

Later that night, I went into Boston to visit good friends from high school. We went out to eat and I tried to stick with my diet by getting spring rolls not fried with shrimp and mint inside, and then a chicken dish full of veggies. Not organic, but very good and it didn't weigh me down. For dessert, a blueberry yogurt smoothie.

Today I have a double shift, and my meals I have planned so far is plain chicken with rice and broccoli for dinner and oatmeal with kefir mixed in for breakfast. I don't know what lunch will be, but I know there will be a protein shake in there somewhere. Unfortunately, I have not made it to the gym yet. I promise that will change by Sunday...though going to the gym on Sundays always sucks.

You guys have any low calorie snack ideas?