My Year To Thrive

"My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style." ~Maya Angelou


Can Food Be Addictive? |

~Tomorrow is race day!~

ice cream crack pipe NYTimes

Can Food Be Addictive? –

I absolutely believe food can be addictive.  I’ve gotten a lot better since I’ve been running, but I used to (& okay, sometimes still do) used food like an alcoholic would drink.  If I was sad or had a bad day, I ate.  If I was happy & had a good day I ate to celebrate.  The binges were always for sadness, loneliness, nervousness, the bad days.  I would eat till I was sick, & keep eating.  I ate things I knew were horrible for me.  Sometimes I would actually think to myself, “I wish I could eat till I exploded.  I want to eat myself to death.”  Regular exercise helps your body regulate sugar & I think that’s why the running helps so much with my eating, along with just generally making me feel better so I don’t need to eat that way as much.  I have far less cravings & binges.

Part of this uses a rat research finding I’ve blogged about before, but they’ve pulled in a few other articles.  A big take-home point for me is how deprivation affects us, which is how traditional dieting works.

…sugar-binging rats show signs of opiatelike withdrawal when their sugar is taken away — including chattering teeth, tremoring forepaws and the shakes. When the rats were allowed to resume eating sugar two weeks later, they pressed the food lever so frantically that they consumed 23 percent more than before.

I would say in my own experience that’s true.  One thing that really made sense for me, which is the opposite of the usual thinking, is from When Women Stop Hating Their Bodies.  They suggest that instead of restricting your access to the foods you crave, your trigger foods, you give yourself a plentiful supply.  Think about how much you could possibly eat at once & keep three times that much around at all times.  When you get over the initial spree of having it around all the time, it becomes mundane & loses its power.  It worked very well for me when I was able to do it.



A Girl I Used To Know; A Life Led By Fear

Where’s the girl I knew that held
A lighter up to the radio,
She’d do anything she wants
Because she can?
~Christian Kane, “Let’s Take A Drive” (House Rules) 
(Lyrics Gather)

A woman with butterflies flying out of her hair, & the text "When life gives you something that makes you feel afraid, that's when life gives you a chance to be brave." -Lupytha Hermin(My Favorite Run)

I’ve been listening to Christian Kane’s “Let’s Take A Drive” lately & doing a lot of thinking & feeling.  Talking to a friend last night I told her I needed to quit listening to that song because it gives me “all the feels” & makes me think too much.  However, as much as it makes me sad, it’s also motivating.

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Exercise May Prevent Stress and Anxiety, Study Suggests | MedlinePlus


A new study from researchers at the University of Maryland School of Public Health found that moderate exercise can help people manage future stress and anxiety, and the emotional and mental health benefits of exercise may last long after a workout ends.

MedLine Plus guy on a treadmill

Exercise May Prevent Stress and Anxiety, Study Suggests: MedlinePlus

File this under interesting, but not surprising.  Naturally, I am a big advocate of exercise for mental health so I thought I’d share.

“While it is well known that exercise improves mood, among other benefits, not as much is known about the potency of exercise’s impact on emotional state and whether these positive effects endure when we’re faced with everyday stressors once we leave the gym,” J. Carson Smith, assistant professor in the university’s department of kinesiology, said in a university news release. “We found that exercise helps to buffer the effects of emotional exposure. If you exercise, you’ll not only reduce your anxiety, but you’ll be better able to maintain that reduced anxiety when confronted with emotional events.”

They studied exercise & quiet time for helping with stress & anxiety, & while they both helped immediately, exercise was the most helpful over time.

Read the entire article



4 Ways to Support Someone With Depression | World of Psychology

Psych Central 4 Ways to Support Someone with Depression

4 Ways to Support Someone With Depression | World of Psychology

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you probably know the biggest part of my Bipolar Disorder is the Depressions.  I have a lot of days where I can’t get out of bed or get motivated to care about anything including myself.  This is part of the reason I consider myself a perpetual beginner at running because I have quit so often, going weeks or months without running, that I feel like I am constantly starting over.  I’ve been doing much better this year.  I have been committed to my running, therapy, taking my meds, & just generally taking better care of myself.  All of that has combined to put me in a much better place, which has enabled me to do a much better job of all those things.  It’s a cycle of goodness.

Reading this post, much of it rang true to me so naturally I wanted to share it here because I’m sure many of you have either struggled with Depression yourself or have someone close to you who has.

The four main points presented & the parts of them I most identified with are:

  1. Be on their side.  “The person may have lost perspective on how big a problem this actually is. They will find it hard to hear that what is insurmountable for them is actually not such a big deal.”  HUGE!  No faster way to get me to shut you out than to make light of how I’m feeling.
  2. Give Plenty of reassurance.  “Many people suffering with depression feel unworthy of being loved. ”  If you live in this state long enough, even post-Depression it is hard to shake the feeling you don’t deserve to be loved.
  3. Give understanding & sympathy.  “People with depression can spend a lot of time ruminating on their situation and feeling sorry for themselves. Pointing it out to them is not helpful.”  Depression blots out anything good in your life, so pointing out some new way for them to be wrong is the opposite of helpful.
  4. Offer to help. “If you ask, ‘What is the best thing I can do to help you right now?’ don’t be offended if the reply is ‘Leave me alone’. Sometimes, that is the most helpful thing you can do at present.”  <<THIS

And another snippet that rings true for me:

Well meaning people often attempt to fix the problem. They may say something like, “Have you tried aromatherapy? There was an article about it in the paper…” This kind of comment can come across as trivializing the illness.

(I am probably guilty of this last one since I’m feeling better.  Much like a newly recovering addict, you think you have found the answer & you MUST SHARE IT with everyone because it is so awesome & will change their lives, too!)

Read the entire post to get some more suggestions on helping your loved ones who are suffering from Depression.


Weekly Running Update: Sept.17- 23

“Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other”
~Walter Elliot (Think Exist)

Just do it. (Nike swoosh) Even if it sucks.

-One great run this week, flubbed the rest. Next week will be better!
(Found this on tumblr. I traced it back to Hey Funniest, but couldn’t find the exact post.)

So… this week started out great, but went down hill from there.  Tuesday I ran 4mi at 12min run – 1min walk intervals.  Did great.  All miles under 18mins, & without even trying I ran each mile faster than the last.  I’ve run one mile faster than a previous mile, but I have never gotten faster on every mile.  I ran the last mile 42.3secs faster than the fist mile.  GO ME!  Then Thursday came…

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Wanted: #RunChat Official Bloggers | #RunChat


#RunChat blogger logo

Wanted: #RunChat Official Bloggers

No, I am not a #RunChat blogger, I just wanted to share this opportunity in case any of you might be interested in throwing your hat in the ring.  The next Twitter #RunChat will be this Sunday (9/23) @ 8PM Eastern.  If you’re interested in blogging, the (short) application form is in the post & it’s open until Wed, 9/26 @ 9PM Eastern.  #RunChat is for all levels of runners & happens every 2nd & 4th Sunday.


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Modifications for yoga twists (and tips on making friends with your belly) | Yoga with Nadine

fat belly yoga mod by Amber

Modifications for yoga twists (and tips on making friends with your belly) | Yoga with Nadine

Pictured above we have the lovely Amber Karnes of Body Positive Yoga, a yoga instructor,  blogger, & owner of a fat belly (like so many of us).  This is her recent guest post over at Yoga With Nadine.  Amber was kind enough to post this to the Yoga group at Fit Fatties for me to find!  Thanks Amber ^_^

I must admit my favorite part of the article was:

On a good day, I modify the pose, and I still get all the benefits of the twist. On a bad day, I look at the celery stalk next to me, looking blissful in some crazy twist plus bind, and think about how much it sucks to be a fat ass butternut squash.

There was a cute pic that goes along with that part, but it’s not the meat of the post so I thought I should choose an image that better suited the topic.  Because that’s what grown-ups do, right?

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