You know when you’ve gained weight. Your clothes are a little tighter. Tops that you used to love don’t quite drape the same way they used to. Going up and down the stairs is just a little more effort than you’d like it to be. Bending over to tie/untie shoes makes you unable to breathe. So while others can SEE it, you can FEEL it.
I’ve been feeling really tired and sluggish. Like no matter how much sleep I get, I could sleep more. I’m normally a 5 a.m. type of person – up with the birds and ready to get shit done. Lately I’m lucky if I can drag myself out of bed to get to work on time. More often than not, I’m utilizing our 15 minutes of grace for clocking in at work. And there’s this constant fog – like I can never think quite clearly or focus on a task like I could before.
And let’s not even get started on my behavior. My depression and anxiety have been noticeably progressing towards worse over the past few months. This past summer my husband wrecked his motorcycle and broke an ankle, and was laid up for 12 weeks. We sold our house, bought a new one, and moved. My GelMoment business took flight and what started as a hobby has landed me with a team of 170 amazing women to help guide and support. All while taking care of two toddlers and working a full time job. The stress of all of these combined led to the eating (hello, emotional eater), which in turn led to the weight gain, which in turn lead to increased anxiety about; my appearance, going out in public, and overall feeling like shit about myself. Feeling like shit about myself for me = treating others like shit. Then, I immediately feel terrible about my behavior, but am too proud to say sorry or explain, which leads to more feeling like shit. (By the way, you’ll find words like shit on my blog.) When I feel like shit, I eat. And the cycle continues…
I’ve known for a while that I needed to do something about my health. The clothes, the sleep, the exhaustion, the poor behavior, they have all been starting to weigh on me. So I’ve been researching the Ketogenic diet. For months I’ve been reading, pinning, and joining groups on Facebook. Waiting for the ‘right time’ to get started. Most recently (as it is EVERY year) my excuse was that I’d start after the holidays. So, here we are. After the holidays. So I decided I was going to start today.
Wake Up Call
I got to work this morning – and it was more of the same. I couldn’t focus on anything. What used to take me 10 minutes to finish now takes me nearly an hour. A co-worker asking a question that normally wouldn’t bother me grates on my nerves. I can’t stop thinking about ALL of the things I have on my to-do list for GelMoment. Parties to schedule/create, team training to do, blog posts to write, and the list goes on.
Mid-morning, I go to blow my nose (I’ve had a cold for what seems like weeks) and my ear is crackling and popping. It’s painful, and I’ve had this illness since prior to Christmas, and I fear the worst. So I start googling ear infection and before you know it, I’m calling the doc and scheduling an appointment.
I leave work at 1:15 and drive to the clinic. As I’m driving, I realize how tired I am even though it’s super sunny outside and it’s only 1:30 in the afternoon. And it hits me: the type of exhaustion I’m feeling, I haven’t felt in nearly 12 years. The irritability. Lack of ability to focus. Lack of desire to actually DO the things I want to do. I know I’ve missed taking my anti-depressant a few times – but it can’t be THIS bad again, can it?
I start to think about when the last time was that I consistently took my medication. Has it been days? Weeks? Months? If my memory serves correct, I haven’t taken my meds consistently since July or August. This isn’t uncommon for me, as over the course of time from when I was first diagnosed at 18 and now, I’ve been off meds successfully. But this time, is not success. I realize that I’ll need to discuss this with the doctor at my appointment, and the anxiety about it sets in.
I pull up to the clinic and head inside to get checked in. I no more than go to find my seat, and the nurse is already calling me back. (Thank goodness for timeliness at the doc office for once, right?) We head to my least favorite place. The one we all know and love. The scale. I step on, and my heart SINKS.
That number can’t be right. I know I have boots and a chunky sweater on, but that absolutely cannot be accurate. I haven’t been this weight since I was pregnant nearly two years ago! The feelings of shame and disgust with myself rush in. So obviously, I joke about it with the nurse hoping to diffuse my feelings. It’s useless. No sarcastic comment or one liner about my weight is going to make this feeling go away.
We head into the exam room, and she starts to ask the typical, “What brings you in today?” type questions. And I’m honest with her. I tell her that I initially scheduled an appointment because of an earache, but also desperately need to discuss my depression and anxiety again. She takes some notes, and says the doctor will be in shortly.
When the doctor comes in, we discuss my ear and then move into the conversation about my depression. My primary doctor recently left the Clinic, and I have yet to establish a new one. So my appointment today is with a male doctor I’ve never met before. I’m not sure how other people with depression view their illness. For me, it’s always something I’ve been ashamed of. Like, why can’t I function the way other people can? Why do I need medication to help me be ‘normal’? This shame made me terrified to have to bring up to a stranger that I’d lost control again. To admit that I don’t feel happy. That I’ve lost joy in the day to day. That I’d rather sleep than do anything else in my life. That my patience with my kids and husband is non-existent, and the guilt over it is killing me inside.
So needless to say our discussion leaves me in tears. Embarrassed, ashamed, and ready to do something to change it. I vowed then and there I’ll take my meds daily, and finally do something about my diet.
New Year, New Me
So why am I writing about all of this? I’ve attempted multiple times throughout the years to start a diet. The longest it’s ever lasted is maybe 30 days, tops. So although documenting my Ketogenic journey and what led to it is horribly embarrassing, I need some accountability. I need to have an outlet to discuss it instead of talking my husbands’ ear off. I need to have cheerleaders. I need like-minded people to share in this journey that understand what goes into it. I’m hoping that at least one person who stumbles across this blog post can relate to it, find comfort in it, or otherwise find it useful in some way.
Ketogenic day one wasn’t as difficult as I had expected it to be. And even though I was unprepared for it – I was committed. On my way into work this morning, I hadn’t packed a breakfast, and the only thing in my desk drawer was instant oatmeal. So I swung into McDonald’s and did a quick search for ‘Keto Breakfast McDonalds’ on google. I ordered a Steak, Egg and Cheese bagel, sans the bagel. It was filling, delicious, and only 7g Carbs, 23g Protein, and 32g Fat. Knowing there are foods on the go that fit into this lifestyle was encouraging.
For lunch, I ordered a Jimmy John’s Unwhich. They are one of the few places in our office park that deliver, and being able to order a lettuce wrapped sandwich was a no-brainer! I ended up ordering the #9 Unwhich – Italian Nightclub. It was fantastic! At just 8g Carbs and 29g Protein, it was super filling.
Now I’ve read some things about intermittent fasting during this lifestyle and it’s benefits. And day one although I wasn’t intending to fast – I was REALLY depressed after that doctor’s appointment. I was overall just feeling like shit, and I’m not sure about you – but when I felt like that in the past, I’d reach for sweets. So instead, I drank some water. And before I knew it, it was bedtime and I hadn’t eaten – and wasn’t hungry.
So, my Ketogenic Day One was probably a little different than most. But from here on out I’m going to share my journey. My ups, downs, wins, losses, setbacks, you name it. I’ll be sharing what I eat daily on my Instagram, naomi_nails_keto. And I’ve created a support community to share recipes, tips/tricks, and successes over on Facebook – feel free to join us at Naomi Nails Keto Community.
I hope you find value in at least something I share here, and if you’re new to a Ketogenic diet too and need support or advice, feel free to drop me a message!