Reality Check

Recently I had to have some photos taken of me in Yoga clothes. Looking thru those photos was definitely a reality check.

Fact is…I’ll be celebrating my 49th birthday this year.  Most of the time I can conveniently forget that. Afterall, I don’t feel like I’m in my late forties, in many ways I feel like I’m still a 20-something with my life ahead of me.  I can mentally select what I notice in the mirror, but photos seem to make everything visible, even the aspects of my physical self that I would like to ignore.

Of course photos aren’t the only way I’m getting a reality check.  This past year more of my work involves sitting for hours in front of the computer or sitting crocheting.  Either way I’m leading a much more sedentary life than I was 2 years ago, and I am noticing the difference.  I have more aches and pains, I’m gaining weight and I’m losing muscle mass.

So that makes me wonder, is this just what happens as we age? Should I just accept that the rest of my life I’ll be living with these issues? Was my Mom right, and every thing after 50 is just “patch, patch, patch”? For those who know me well, you already know my answer.

I’m fighting back.  I’ve already been making efforts to become more active in my life, interspersing physical activity through-out my day.  I now  have a tread-mill that I walk on for at least 20 minutes each morning.  With our family adding a dog to the mix I get out and play ball with her and take her for walks as well.

I have plans for more physical activity as well, especially with summer finally arriving…hiking and swimming with my kids and yard work.

But exercise, though important, it isn’t the only change I’m making. My Chiropractor told me about a book called “The Paleo Diet” by Loren Cordain, Ph.D. that I am currently reading.  It is very interesting, discussing how our physiology isn’t really in sync with the modern diet.  The argument is we are basicially Stone-age beings living in the Space Age.

The Paleo diet consists of eating like our Stone-age ancestors; lean meats, fruits and non-starchy vegetables.  I’m very impressed by the information Dr. Cordain presents in his book. I have already discovered that I do better health-wise by eliminating wheat and gluten from my diet.

I’m a little leary about the amount of lean meat the diet recommends, but I know I’ll be happy with eating all the veggies and fruit I want.  The hardest part will be eliminating the sugars and salts I love.  His recommendations for the diet do include an occassional “cheater” meal, but I don’t know how easily I can adapt.

So I  have decided to conduct an experiment on myself.  I will be incorporating the Paleo diet into my eating life-style. Hopefully even convincing my husband and children to join me.  And I’ll be blogging about my progress as I go along.