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Still Undertall (...coach thyself!)

Friday, August 11, 2017

A reprint of my recent blog

Most of my friends (both real and virtual) and our families know that I’m a certified Transformational Health Coach and that the dream my (Personal Trainer) husband and I are pursuing in our senior years is to build our business as a team. The process from student to coach has been positive, exciting, and emotionally satisfying for both of us and we continue to grow and learn as much as we can to improve our skills.

While we love working with people of all ages, we have a special affinity for clients who fall into the “baby boomer generation”, have blood sugar issues that manifest as Insulin Resistance, Metabolic Syndrome or Type 2 Diabetes or other medical/physical challenges that tend to show up as people age. Our programs are tailored to the needs of our clients and we find that older clients find it easy to relate to us. Our clients’ results include lower A1C (blood glucose) levels, increased energy, and body thinning and firming as they progress through their program. In short, they reach their goals for health and fitness.

The two prior paragraphs are not really advertisements for our services, although they sure read that way. They describe how we help our clients but they don’t always apply to our own health and fitness goals. We were both reminded of this after recent checkups with our primary care physician, our podiatrist (diabetics need regular monitoring to manage neuropathy and other foot problems), my husband’s endocrinologist and my rheumatologist. (As we age it seems there are always checkups on the calendar!)

Long story short, my husband’s A1C was higher than any of us wanted it to be, and I had regained some of the weight I had worked so hard to lose. It's crucial for me to keep my glucose levels in a healthy range as well. Let’s call the results a “come-to-Jesus moment”. We’d been lax in controlling our sugars and carbs, and test results were a wake-up call.

No one wants to hear unpleasant medical news, but I’m one who tends to wallow for 10 minutes and then moves full-on to improve the situation as much as I can. When it comes to my husband’s well-being I’m all over that, and he knows if he discloses to me any pains or health problems I’m going to be yanking his butt to the first medical appointment/test I can schedule. Too bad I’m not as diligent with myself.

After months of weight plateauing and sloppy tracking, I knew I had work to do, but it took my husband’s blood work results to spur me into action. Suddenly my new mantra became “Walk your talk!” I have to tell you, my husband was not happy with my decision: I declared a moratorium on sugar and white flour consumption. YIKES! Just take a moment to imagine our discussion in the car on the way home that day.

I set August 1st as the Beginning Day and set about researching alternative sweeteners and white wheat flour alternatives. We like our whole grains, (no gluten problems for either of us), but some replacements are more nutritious and often lower in carbohydrates. I had to promise him I’d find healthy replacements for the sweets we so love, and I found Paleo dessert recipes to fit the bill. The recipes use natural sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia, date sugar, monk fruit or agave syrup. I even found dark chocolate (70% cacao) chips sweetened with stevia! I also promised him we could still have high quality, 70% cacao dark chocolate as long as the portions were well controlled. While we do not exclusively follow a Paleo diet, the dessert recipes are a win-win for sure because we do not care for the artificial sweeteners currently on the market. (No judgment here, just a personal preference!)

**IMPORTANT to note: All sugars/sweeteners should be used sparingly, in controlled amounts. The best way to satisfy a sweet tooth is with fresh fruits, which supply nutrients as well as fiber. Everything in moderation, as the carbs and sugars in fruit still need to be monitored.**

Since I love to cook, finding new ways to use veggies to replace pasta has become a bit of an obsession. Zoodles, anyone? How about cauliflower rice or veggie noodles? Easy peasy with a spiralizer! We also use rice pasta, Soba (buckwheat) noodles, even pasta made with various beans (adzuki, or black). It is amazing what you can discover in grocery stores these days. Ingredients previously found only in health food stores are becoming much easier to find.

We’ve been sugar and white flour free (well, I’m more stringent in my food choices than dear hubby) since the first of the month and in 11 days we’ve both shed excess pounds, feel less bloated and notice an improvement in how we feel overall. I even discovered that going added-sugar-free decreased my appetite! WOW, was that a pleasant surprise! I had to research that little tidbit to be sure it wasn’t just a fluke. I know that if we maintain this decision we will continue to feel and be more healthy. As a by-product, we also gain the approval of our medical team.

We were compelled to make these dietary changes because (a) our food plan demanded an overhauling in order to improve our health, and (b) our integrity as coaches is paramount. Neither of us will ask a client to do something we ourselves will not do. Walking our talk is a major priority, and helps us to experience what we ask of our clients. It’s another win-win situation!

I realize that life happens and there will be events that are beyond our control. In striving for excellence rather than perfection, I give myself permission to falter and to learn from mistakes rather than repeat them. I recently read this quote by an unknown author:

"The first time you make a mistake it's an accident, the second time you make the same mistake it's on purpose, and the third time you make that same mistake it's no longer a mistake, it's a habit."

And now that I've blogged about our experience, it's all about accountability for our new habits. One day at a time!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • no profile photo CD15653250
    emoticon emoticon emoticon for sharing. Since I have decreased my sugar intake I feel so much better and if I need to add sweetness to a recipe or tea I drizzle in honey or maple syrup.
    emoticon the third time you make the same mistake it's a habit. emoticon blog.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon

    1041 days ago
    Thanks for this blog!!! I have decided to check in instead of out on the healthy quest. Do you have a certain brand or type of spiralizer you prefer? I can easily order items on Amazon here or check some of the cooking stores and see if this trend has hit here in Germany. I don't believe they are commonly found yet though. Thanks for the encouraging blog!
    Your teammate
    PS---so happy you got enough snow to go snowshoeing!!!!! When I livd in Alaska I have many memories of this! Currently we have around an inch--not enough,,,but I think it is beautiful!
    1214 days ago
    Great blog!
    I am going to look up recipes now. Such an inspiring blog. I am ready to lose the bloat.
    I have the sweetners, just don't know how to use them in recipes.
    I plan to kick it up 5 notches for the Fall challenge.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1390 days ago
    WEll said Diane. I may have one of those spiralizers in my cupboard... will check on that... my problem is that noone is happy when i try and cook healthier and I refuse to cook 2 different meals but am going to have to figure something out as I don't enjoy cooking much anymore... thanks for sharing... wishing you all success in your personal and business endeavours... wish you lived closer. :)
    1400 days ago
  • ASHLYN991
    Thanks for taking the time to share all this valuable info with us -- lots of food for thought. emoticon
    1403 days ago
  • no profile photo INCH_BY_INCH
    emoticon emoticon
    1404 days ago
    You guys are awesome at all the things you are doing as a couple for your own health and as coaches for others Wishing you all the best in both areas of your lives. HUGS, Paula
    1405 days ago
    I must live in a vaccum--going to have to google spiralizer! Nice post with jewels of wisdom!
    1405 days ago
  • DIANE7786
    I love my spiralizers! I have two, one has a smaller center that is good for small foods like radishes. It's a mystery why spiralized food tastes better. Maybe because it's prettier.

    For me, weight loss is a constant vigil. The moment I ease off healthy foods and exercise my weight comes back fast. I hope you find a solution. .
    1405 days ago
    You are doing great, Diane, and this blog post is a testament to all you've learned. Thanks for sharing with us!
    1405 days ago
  • CAROL_31649731
    Wow, powerful blog, Diane! You write so well ... and the topic really hit home, as I need to watch my blood sugar levels as well. Always love how you tackle problems head-on, though. You will do this! Walk that talk!
    1405 days ago
    emoticon Good luck. emoticon
    1406 days ago
  • CGPS1795
    Wow Diane (and Fred)! this is really good! If you are having such success with these modifications, maybe it would help my/our program! We already use the spiralizer and LOTS of zucchini!

    emoticon Carl & Mark
    1406 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/11/2017 9:02:05 PM
    Thanks for sharing. Wishing you the best of luck! emoticon
    1406 days ago
  • 911BRAD
    Diane & Fred, thanks for sharing. Finding a doable program is what I find frustrating. Wishing you both well in your endeavor to achieve your health and business goals. All my best, Brad XOXOXO
    1406 days ago
    emoticon emoticon Walking the talk is the only way to coach! emoticon
    1406 days ago
    Great info
    1406 days ago
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