Saturday, March 14, 2015

Pi Day Catch Up Post

Happy Pi Day!  At least in the US, with the way we express dates, today is 3.14.  More than that, today is 3.1415.  I know that the next  numbers are 926.  So at 9:26 in every time zone, social media sites are being flooded with pi posts.  And images of people with pies (because of course we instinctively use pi to serve pie).  I work for patent attorneys now, I may be picking up on some of their humor.

And we use pi in hand crafts too - any time you're creating something circular.  You may not realize it but you use it!  It's one of those mathematical laws that we can be proud of ourselves as humans for figuring out.  So Happy Pi Day, everyone!

I don't have any pie- or pi-related updates to show you.  From my post on mental fatigue a few weeks ago, you may guess that I've lost a little mojo.  It's starting to come back, though.  We've had several days of sunny, warm weather (71 yesterday!) which, oddly, makes me feel like knitting socks.  So I've started a new pair, and I like them so far.  I also have plans for a new sweater/cardigan/bolero to go with my Easter dress.

In reality, I spent the first 2 months of the year working on my health.  I'm not in terrible health - I don't have any chronic diseases or muscle pain, I fight off most colds, etc.  But I had a troubling health screen last winter.  My company provides the blood draw and cholesterol screening for us and if we improve numbers or maintain healthy levels, we get a bonus in our health reimbursement accounts.  It's a great benefit.  But last year my numbers were out of whack.  My blood pressure was high (never before in my life), and my healthy cholesterol was too low and my triglycerides were in a dangerous category.  My weight was too high, and my waist circumference was dangerous.  With my family history of heart disease, these numbers were a wake-up call!

I joined a gym (another benefit of our company) and started working out but the weight was coming off slowly.  I felt stronger, but I didn't see very many changes.  In January my friend Kristy invited me to do a 5-day clean eating challenge.  I figured I could do something like that for just 5 days!  Because I'm dairy-free (as much as possibe) the changes weren't huge.  But I lost 5 pounds and an inch off my waist in 5 days.

After that challenge, I joined another challenge called 21 Day Fix - 3 weeks of portion control, focusing on lean protein and getting fruits and veggies, and daily exercise.  After 3 weeks - I'd lost another 5 pounds and 3 inches off my waist.  I went from no real results to 10 pounds and 4 inches lost in the equivalent of a month!

I just started a second round of 21 Day Fix - this may be where my increased energy is coming from!  I'm having some fun modifying recipes and figuring out "container counts" - I sort of half-promised some lactose-free recipes a couple of years ago.  I'm now planning to share some of these calculations here on the blog.

Oh, I didn't tell you the best part - we had our 2015 health screening at the end of February (in the middle of my last week of round 1 of 21 Day Fix).  I just got the results back.  Blood pressure - normal.  HDL - moved into (low end) of optimal range.  Triglycerides - dropped over 100 points, from dangerous to optimal.  My LDL was in a normal range, but it dropped too!  I'm now 5 inches from a healthy waist circumference.  I'm not using pi in any way to calculate that number, LOL.  Or pie, either!

Thanks for reading all of that, it feels good to share it.  I know that as crafters we don't always seek out fitness (yes, I know there are exceptions, and I think I'm on my way to becoming one of those exceptions).  In general, we are drawn to handcraft because it's comforting.  We like comforting food, comfortable chairs, comfortabe clothes...  I just wanted to share with you that it is possible to improve health and still have time for the comforting things you love!

2 comments:

Lana said...

Good for you!!! That's awesome! I know how hard it is. For me when I have free time and I'm thinking "I should use this time to get a work out in....but I want to stitch!" The second option usually wins out. I need to get back to good eating habits and a steady work out regimen again!! Your post really inspired me to pick it up again!!

Andrea Holme said...

Lana, thank you so much for your comment! I was literally just getting ready to warm up some water for tea, and relax for the night, and I'm having the mental battle of "I don't feel like working out" - it's only 30 minutes. I'll do that, reheat the water, then relax guilt free! The nice thing about this program is it's something different every day - tonight it's Pilates, so my whole body will feel stretched and renewed.