On my computer at school I have a yellow sticky note with my year-long research question for my work on the CRAVE project with my students.
How can my family live more lightly on the earth?
And then stickies referring to the categories I need to investigate and blog about. But as I stared at them I realized that I should have drawn a big elephant to represent what I wasn’t going to talk about. Weight. Certainly becoming a teacher instead of a retail worker made me more sedentary and I gained a little bit of weight around 14 years ago. I didn’t gain much weight with Cormac and actually lost weight while pregnant with Finley. But in 2002 I had major work stress during which I was bullied by a parent and treated very badly by the administration and fellow teachers. It was an incredibly horrible situation and I definitely gained weight from the stress as much as from stress/comfort eating. I’ve just kind of hung onto that trauma and I think issues with my weight are an outward sign.
I know that one way an individual can reduce his/her impact on the planet is by eating less and maintaining a normal weight. So that’s my goal. For the last week I have been following a very strict Whole 30 with calorie restriction and tracking. I did a Whole 30 in January 2011 and lost weight without tracking what I ate so I expect this time to be even more successful. This plan is similar to a paleo diet: no sugar, no grains, no legumes, just protein, vegetables, and a little bit of fruit. I’d been doing well with no processed food and eating lots of vegetables so it’s been a pretty easy transition. I was told this summer by my ND to give up gluten and it has been a struggle even though I feel better, much better, without it.
If I am making efforts to make simple changes then I can’t ignore the elephant in the room,, the change that most needs to be made. It’s harder to lose weight as an adult but people who are well within a normal weight range use fewer medical resources, eat less, eat better quality food, and are more active. So, as I work toward the Exercise part of this research this is a plan that can immediately be put into motion.
Wish me luck.