Tag Archive | healthy

Parade’s End

I have blogged about this before, but when I received the official word that I had breast cancer, I was at EPCOT in DisneyWorld. I remember vividly where I was standing when the call came from the doctor.  That was in 2012.

When I visited Disney again in 2014, I had my husband take my picture to celebrate my return.

Disney China

Last week, I had the privilege of chaperoning my son’s band trip to Disney and I took the opportunity to take another photo. Yes, I’m still alive and well!

Disney China 2018

(Apparently I like the color pink, but it’s not because of the ubiquitous pink ribbons!)

Disney trips are always hard work, even as they are loads of fun. The temperature was hot (85-90), the humidity high, and my feet have never hurt so bad from all the walking and standing! But it was a great trip — our students are awesome and we couldn’t be prouder of their march down Main Street in Magic Kingdom!

One thing I realized on this trip? That I’m in better shape than I give myself credit for!

On the day the students marched in Magic Kingdom, I got in roughly 20,000+ steps in the heat (“86/feels like 92” kind of day…), and this included some serious running along the parade route to get ahead of the band for purposes of video and photos, and then running back to the back lot gate at Pirates of the Caribbean. It also included unloading/loading the van with some of the other chaperones in the back lot in the blazing sun. (Note: at least I was wearing shorts… our poor kids were wearing their wool uniforms, so I’m not really complaining!)

I was exhausted at the end of the day, and maybe a little faint at the parade’s end, but I did it! At least I know my heart and lungs are pretty solid, and considering where I was just a mere 6 years ago, I’m incredibly grateful!

This photo op will be part of every trip I take to Disney because it’s a reminder of where I was, and just how far I’ve come!

IMDb: Parade’s End (2012)

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One Potato, Two Potato

Three Potato, Four!
Five Potato, Six Potato, Seven Potato, More!

Most of you know I follow a whole food, plant based diet.  There are a number of variations on a theme as WFPB diets go, including opinions on everything from nuts to avocados to oils.  I have tried over the past few years to follow The Starch Solution by John McDougall, MD.  The diet has starch at it’s core, including potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, and beans. And, of course, lots of veggies and fruits, and no added oil.

I try to follow this diet pretty faithfully, but the summer months were tough with lots of travel and I managed to pack on a few extra pounds.  I was ready to get back on track, fully compliant, when September rolled around. Unfortunately, those extra pounds were not coming off as easily as I would have hoped (damn metabolism!) and I was getting frustrated.

But then I really started to pay attention to the posts in the McDougall Friends Facebook group I am in and the main focus always seemed to be on potatoes. People bragged about buying 50 pound bags of potatoes, getting the mother lode at farmers’ markets, and finding good sales. There were so many pictures of potatoes every day that I wondered if I wasn’t quite giving the potato her due. After all, potatoes have been a bit ostracized in our society. Too starchy. Bad for you. Dreaded carb. Maybe I was subconsciously avoiding them.

In reality, it’s not the potatoes that are at issue, but rather what we do to them. Deep fried, mashed with milk and butter, drowned in butter, sour cream, gravy and cheese (sometimes all at once). And fully loaded, you can even get bacon. Still, it was the potato who got the bad rap.

Ever the comfort food, potatoes are actually quite good for you. They are low calorie and high fiber. They are a great source of B6, potassium, vitamin C, copper, and niacin. They are antioxidant, contain carotenoids and flavonoids, and  help fight cancer and heart disease.

With the FB group as my inspiration, I started taking baked potatoes every day for lunch, along with some veggies and fruit. Taking advice from the group, I ate the potatoes with ketchup to avoid adding any oils or other “bad” toppings. At first I was hesitant… it seemed a sacrilege to put ketchup on my baked potato, but it turned out to be quite wonderful. I am ready to try dijon mustard as well!

Within no time, I saw the change on the scale. It’s only been a few weeks, but I’m down the 5 pounds I put on over the summer, plus some, and I feel like I’ve finally broken through my plateau. I definitely find that it’s not how much I eat — counting calories helps me not at all — it’s what I eat.  And potatoes do the trick,  so eat up!

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IMDb: One Potato, Two Potato (1964)