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About Harihead

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    Denver, Colorado
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  1. I'm mostly writing short stories at the moment, because it's easier to fit into a working day. I've written several novels, but have only 3 as commercial properties. The others were for "fun". Short answer: I'm delaying this challenge to a later time. I was doing great with diet and exercise, and then... appendicitis. Doctor said no restrictive diet while healing from surgery. And, the appendicitis turned up another problem, where I'll have to have more surgery in about 3 weeks. So, with all the surgeries, healing, etc. I've got to focus on that. Bummer for many reasons. The boot camp was working. I'll just have to recommence at some later time. Best wishes to all of you who still have normal lives. Cheers.
  2. THE CHALLENGE IS ON! I'm reading my ketosis guidebook that will help me through "boot camp". Phase 1 takes ~8 weeks, but it's measured by ketones, so I'll see if I enter Ph 2 sooner. I'm needing to adjust all of my lifestyle during this 2-3 month period, which includes: Diet: Category 1 + supplements, periodic fasting, boosting emunctories Exercise: Blend endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance - moderate aerobic level, no HIIT at this time. Great choices are swimming, walking/hiking, biking, and yoga. Rejuvenate: Follow daily rhythms: Rise at 7, exercise AM or 2-4 PM, start relaxation ~8 PM. This will be challenging with work/life commitments.
  3. Pre-challenge update: My initial ketone reading Weds. this week was 0.5. All alcohol still stopped, but enjoyed a last delicious cup of decaf this morning. Lost 11 pounds in the last month-- I'm pretty sure that's a record. The Category 1 phase starts tomorrow. I will get more instructions from the dr. on Tuesday. This is what I'll be eating until my ketones are consistently over 1.0: Greens: Alfalfa sprouts, arugula, bok choy, cabbage, chard, cilantro, lettuce, radicchio, radishes, sauerkraut, spinach, watercress Fats: Avocado, butter/ghee, flax, olives, Oils: coconut, flaxseed, olive, sesame Condiments: Horseradish, mustard, lemon juice, vinegar, wasabi Protein: Any good fish, turkey, lamb, game, bison, ostrich, low CHO powders (Avoid 2+ weeks- allergy testing: Chicken, Beef, eggs & shellfish) Spices: Sea salt, pepper, fresh herbs and spices (garlic, cumin, dill, oregano, parsley, rosemary, thyme, turmeric) Sweeteners: Cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla Beverages: Water, Herbal teas, full-fat coconut in can Regarding exercise, the pool opens today. I hope to do my usual morning swim most days unless prevented by bad weather, out of town, etc. We're getting a rainstorm today so plan to head down about 9 AM when it's a bit warmer. Swimming will count toward vigorous exercise only if it's 30+ minutes. (I normally do 20 minutes before work.)
  4. Thanks, Evicious! I didn't intend to start keto -- it evolved out of the discussions we had regarding my symptoms and diet plan. It really feels like the right way to go, and I'm eager to get started! But I can't really being until my discussion, scheduled for Tuesday next week. So I'm still in prep mode, but "accidentally"- stopped drinking coffee and alcohol stopped eating all junk The question is how many starchy foods I can still eat (like rice or certain veggies) because he wants me to enter keto slowly. My kit arrived tonight! I look forward to reading the 4 separate user guides (yikes) and taking my first reading.
  5. This challenge will build on my previous one. In the last challenge, my goal was to stabilize my emotional and physical state. Check! Now, we get down to business. Under a doctor's supervision, I'm going to start a 2-3 month keto-adaptive boot camp. I have already ordered the blood-testing kit and keto strips. I wanted to start last week, but the doc has some extra steps he wants me to take before I go full bore. He was worried I didn't have sufficient ketones built up to withstand the initial diet. I take my first blood test Tues-Weds when the kit arrives, and I also have bloodwork that's coming back. This challenge will coincide with the "full bore" phase, starting May 28. I will be evaluating and tweaking my diet as I go based on the ketone results strips. Life Goal: Return to the weight and fitness I had when I worked from home, instead of in someone else's office. 4 Week Challenge Goal: Complete month 1 of the keto-adaptive boot camp. Diet: Category 1 food list, no coffee, alcohol, proscribed carbs of any kind. This is super strict. A = <=1 fails/week, CON +3, CHA +2 B = <=3 fails/week, CON +2, CHA +1 C = <=5 fails/week, CON +1, CHA +1 Exercise: I want to focus on building stamina and vitality, so focus on 5+ "vigorous" exercises and 4+ yoga exercises per week. A = 9+/week, DEX +3, STR +1 B = 6-8/week, DEX +2, STR +1 C = 3-5/week, DEX +1 Refresh: Continue work into mental health-- books and talk therapist if I can corral one. A = 4+/week, WIS +3 B = 3/week, WIS +2 C = 1-2/week, WIS +1 Fiction: Life goal, this. I'm up for one new story a week, which includes a major revision. That will clear the decks for the novel. A = 4+/week STA +3 B = 3/week STA +2 C = 1-2/week STA +1
  6. They are! I feel headed in the right direction. Dr. said I wasn't physically ready to start full-on ketosis-- I don't have enough ketones built up to sustain it. Obviously the change in eating style really helped, and I've been backing out of my coffee crutch pretty well, although I still allow myself some decaf if I'm really missing it. So when I go full no coffee in maybe a week, I'll have eased into it. The "shock" part of the switch is already over.
  7. progris riport 4 - Week 4 status It turns out this month was the setup-- I'm going full-bore ketosis soon. Looking forward to it! Proceeding under doctor's care. Diet: Pathetic B- with 4 outright failures. Challenges included entertaining out-of-town guests, writing workshop, and blood prep work that led to a 16-hour (intentional) fast. So the big lunch/small dinner thing only happened once this week. Total pounds lost this challenge = 9 Exercise: I barely met the new A goal once again (10+ all and 7K steps), so it's still good: Tai Chi x2, yoga x3, extra x2, step goal x3 Refresh: C for week; this one fell off with all the physical prep. Activism x0, mental health x2. Sleep not great but started taking melatonin as an aid upon reawakening. Something with Fiction: A- with 4 writing-related days (day 4 was workshop = editing). Nice strong set out for consideration. OVERALL CHALLENGE RESULTS: Diet: B+ = CON +2, CHA +2 Exercise: A = DEX +2, STR +1 Refresh: B = WIS +2 Fiction: A- = STA +2 I'm happy with my progress and excited about the next phase (ketosis). My headlong plunge was not only halted but outright turned around. I have a team of professionals and friends supporting me. Ready to get my life back -- you bet! For this upcoming week, I'm doing the keto-prep my doctor has advised. I'm working out how to best track that on the next challenge. Cheers, all! HH
  8. Primarily weight loss, but also helping to control stress, which got me into this mess. I will geek out on keytone levels for probably the next 6 months. So good about the therapist. I think she'll have the objectivity to look at your case independently of b/f, although agree it will be WAY better for him to see someone else. Therapists are only human; they can't help but pick favorites or be influenced (as I discovered when I went with my ex-- who was the favorite.) Best wishes to you!
  9. I'm so glad! It's amazing, once I got started, I started feeling better... which encouraged me to do more... a positive cycle! Please let me know how your session goes. I'm still trying to find a therapist. One is in China, another is leaving soon for a month, so no new patients-- I'll keep looking! The dr. visit was great. He tweaked and modified my diet all over the place, into a keytone-burning wonder system. I'm getting a blood test tomorrow so we have a baseline of 3 pertinent markers, and I'm getting a self-test kit so I can actually track my keytones. This is the geekiest diet thing I've ever done and I'm loving it! It's hard to hold myself back -- he wants me to wait a week so I can get that baseline test. I'm already filling my cabinet and fridge with keytone-inducing food. THIS WILL BE SO GREAT!!!
  10. progris riport 3 - Week 3 status Coming in a little late, because I was on vacation. Whahoo! I really needed it. Diet: A wimpy B. I only had 3 outright failures (pasta, pizza and dessert), but my traveling routine is Big Breakfast, little or no lunch due to sightseeing, and largish early dinner. So the light dinner plan failed. Total pounds lost =5 Exercise: I barely met the new A goal (10+ all and 7K steps), so it's working: Tai Chi x2, yoga x2, biking x1, step goal x4 (+4-mile hike) Refresh: I'm going with A because of all the restful, rejuvenating sights and activities on vacation. Activism x1, mental health x4. Sleep not so good, <7 hrs/night all week. Something with Fiction: A. 3 good writing mornings on vacation, with a new story complete on Sunday. YaY! Tomorrow I see my doctor for my first check-up. So far the anti-toxins are doing great. Not seeing much progress on the adrenalin exhaustion. I started an elimination diet today, which means no coffee, but Dr. will customize my plan tomorrow.
  11. progris riport 2 - Week 2 status Week 2 of better habits. Thank you, Rebellion! Diet: More solid A this week-- still had 3 failures, but 2 of those were planned celebrations, so improving. Total pounds lost =4 Exercise: I beat up my A, so I moved the goal posts to be harder next week (10+ all and 7K steps): Tai Chi x3, yoga x2, biking x0, step goal x4 Refresh: B, but overtime at work interfered. Activism x0, mental health x3 (research, talk, and meditation). Slept 9.5 hours one night, big yay! Something with Fiction: B. Only 3 writing days this week, and only 1 with multiple hours. The new story made the top 20 before coming back, alas. Out again. 10 in circulation.
  12. I'm still in the research phase. The 3 rec'd therapists are in Boulder (where my doc is); I won't drive more than 40 minutes. Too much time to work into a full schedule. I have on my list to look them all up and pick one. These give a free short interview to figure out if you're a match. You're right, the wrong therapist is worse than none! NF kept me on track this week, that's for sure. It's easy to blow off good practices when no one's looking. I'll aim for "above bare minimum" next week, but the fact that I could barely squeak it out makes me feel I'm in the right ballpark. Best of wishes for your own quest!
  13. progris riport 1- (borrowed from Flowers for Algernon) - Week 1 status Thank goodness for the Rebellion, is all I can say. I wouldn't have made nearly this much progress without it. Diet: Barely squeaked out an A-- but to be fair, I hadn't signed up yet on Sunday. Pounds lost =1 Exercise: Barely squeaked out an A: Tai Chi x3, yoga x2, biking x1, step goal x2 Refresh: Another barely A. Activism x1, mental health x3 (research, talk, and meditation). Slept 7 hours last night, yay! Something with Fiction: A+ on this one. 5 writing days this week, and all 5 were multiple hours. One new story written and several out in the mail.
  14. "Do something kind for someone else" IS the best advice. I do help out sporadically, but I think I need an ongoing gig, like healing animals, so I can see tangible results. I help out with cash, but I think I need to roll my sleeves up. Best of luck finding a good therapist. I found my divorce one through a group class; she was _awesome_ (the previous counselors were awful). I'm starting the investigation. None of the recs I got from the doctor are on my insurance; oh well! A good person is worth it. Next step is to check them out and make appts. One step at a time.
  15. Thanks, Kareesh. I decided that my slump was not a fluke and had to be addressed. Just the act of addressing it has helped my attitude-- but I fear this victory will be short-lived. I am putting together a local support system (sisters and friends) as well as following doctor's orders and looking for a therapist. I had therapy before, after my divorce, and it really helped (once I found the right counselor). I'm hoping I can find another person who can bring me out of this current space. So, I'm hitting: - lifestyle - diet - mental and physical health The mighty legs upon which to build a more productive future -- fingers crossed.
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