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Getting Better+Cranberry Everything

Guys! Blogmas will begin shortly! In fact, this is probably the last normal post before it starts. I haven’t decided how I want to handle day to day things during Blogmas. I might include them in my Blogmas posts, or I may be double posting in a day. We shall see.

I wanted to recap a little food and a little fitness before I take a little trip tomorrow. Blogmas Day 1 and 2 posts are all typed up, scheduled, and ready to go!

All I’ve done fitness-wise this week is Crossfit. I was really excited for Monday’s workout. We are preparing for the open. It’s always interesting to see how different boxes prepare in terms of their programming. At my box last year, we did a ton of longer workouts, like 3 10 minute AMRAPS with a few minutes of rest in between. Where I am now, we’re working on endurance in the form of disgustingly long sets. We’re doing a set of 20 back squats, and a set of 20 presses. This week I did 120 lbs for the squat. It’s crazy how I can be sore from just one set. I was not excited for that. The thing I WAS excited for? We redid 16.2. I was really happy with my performance when I did it the first time. I had just gotten my toes to bar literally the week before, and was so proud of myself for getting through them. 16.2 was 25 toes to bar, 50 double unders, 15 cleans at 95 lbs. If you finish that in 4 minutes, you move on to do that again in 4 minutes, with the weight on the cleans increasing and the reps decreasing. Last time I got majorly tripped up on my doubles (LOL pun sort of intended), and finished with 46 doubles in the first round. My doubles are MILES better than in March, so I was really excited to tackle this again. Not a lot of people Rxed this so they definitely did more rounds than I did, but I really wanted to see what I could do. The doubles were cake. I finished the toes to bar and doubles in 3 minutes, and got through 5 of the cleans before running out of time. That’s 9 reps better than last time, but it’s a big 9 reps because the cleans are time consuming. I was panting and shaky at the 4 minute mark, and not entirely sad to be done with the workout.

This morning I went to 6am Crossfit because I woke up at 4am and could not fall back asleep. When it was 5:15 and I wasn’t even tired, I figured I should just get up and get it done, especially since I had plans to have a more interesting and large lunch than normal. We worked on snatches, and then the WOD was 3 rounds of 15 wall balls, 15 pull ups, and 15 deadlifts (I used 135#). I knew the pull ups would be a little challenging, but I’m not going to baby myself anymore with pull ups in workouts. Unless it’s a crazy number of reps, I just have to suck it up and do it. I’m at a place now with Crossfit where I feel like I’ve made a ton of progress over the past year, and I’ve started to finally get a lot of the movements, so to progress I need to suck it up and Rx the workouts, as slow as it may be, because the speed will come. Honestly, it’s a little bit of a pride issue. At my box, a lot of people don’t Rx the workouts, which is totally cool with me. But it means when I do Rx them, I’m often one of the last people working. But I need to get over that, because it’s the only way I’ll get better.

In terms of food…

Breakfasts:

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Flapjacked muffin with blueberries.

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Going strong with cranberry here. Yogurt with cocoa powder and maple syrup stirred in, topped with cranberry sauce. Eaten in about 5 minutes between Crossfit and taking my dog for a walk with a friend.

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We got talked into signing up for a CSA box while picking up my bib at the turkey trot. It’s cool in that it’s delivered to your door, and you get to pick what you get in your box. I don’t always like Gala apples, but this was delicious. I had it with my typical breakfast (at least for the past 3 months) of yogurt, sunbutter, and cinnamon KIND granola.

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Lunches:

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Leftover Whole Foods Chicken Lemon Artichoke soup with avocado toast.

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Chinese food! I think everyone has that one Chinese restaurant that they’ve been going to forever. My sister just got back from 3 months in Europe, 2 of which were spent in Florence, Italy, and she was craving Chinese food like crazy. I haven’t had it in quite some time as well because I was worried soy sauce (it has a little gluten) would cause me to flare. Now, I feel pretty safe that it won’t, so I was excited as well! I started with egg drop soup, and then got chicken and vegetables with fried rice. And always extra sweet and sour sauce. To put on rice, to put on veggies, to put on chicken. Why not?

Dinners:

My mom and I have been on our own for dinner this week, and we both are fans of simple. We made open faced turkey and havarti sandwiches. Normally we do these with apples on top, but I wanted to try them with cranberry sauce. The verdict? Delicious. We also happened to buy some turkey that was more like carved turkey than deli turkey on accident, so it was perfect with the cranberry sauce! On the side, we sautéed up some zucchini noodles, one day with garlic, and another with smokey salt seasoning blend.

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Etc.

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After 16.2, I was sort of shaky and light headed, so I needed sugar and protein ASAP. I tried this flavor for the first time while cooking dinner. I saw it in St. Louis but never made the leap. It’s good! Who can complain with chocolate though, right? The cinnamon chocolate works with yogurt.

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Trader Joe’s has really delicious peppermint bark. It’s SUPER thick and really hard to break up though! My sister also hadn’t been to Trader Joe’s in 3 months, so she was just a bit excited to go. I was really excited to see GF peppermint jo-jos. I got them, took a bite out of one, and then thought to check the label. They have coconut oil :/ I decided “screw it” and finished the cookie, but thanks to a coconut allergy I can’t eat them since I’m going to react. Darn. Why is coconut oil in everything these days?? At least I have peppermint bark to ease the pain though, right?

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My first coffee back in CA! This was good. Search for the best coffee round 2?

Also, note: I am wearing jeans. It’s been at least 10 months since I wore jeans. Mark your calendars.

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This dessert right here is part of why I firmly believe there is space for a dessert every day. That bowl is only 140 calories. 120 without whipped cream. A serving of Halo Top, a spoonful of delicious gourmet salted rum caramel sauce from St. Helena (in Napa Valley), what could be better?

And with that, I’m signing off. Check back in tomorrow for Blogmas Day 1!

First Day in California

Hey guys! Today was my first day back in California so I thought I’d share my meals.

Breakfast:

I woke up 6am after 6 hours of sleep, thanks to a touch of jet lag. My stomach is still on central time!

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I ordered a whole bunch of Flapjacked muffins and they actually beat me home! They arrived within like 3 days of shipping. Double chocolate is my favorite. I swear it’s like lava cake if you uncool it a little (and there are no eggs so no worries about that!)

I spent the morning running errands with my mom (which included a trip 2 Old Navy and 2 groceries). My grandma is coming into town today so there was lots to prepare!

Lunch:

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My mom made crockpot lemon chicken rice soup a little while ago and thawed some out. I ate that with added spinach and feta. Avocado toast on the side, with Trader Joe’s Everyday seasoning blend.

Snack:

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I saw someone on Instagram post about this company’s new sunbutter, so I checked them out. When I saw they had GF nut free bars, of course I had to try them out. The base of these bars is a seed blend of pumpkin, sunflower, and flax seeds. I ordered 2 flavors: chocolate and sea salt and apple ginger. It’s a smaller company, and I actually got a handwritten note which I thought was a really nice touch.

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This was really, really good. It was chewy and had the perfect amount of salty. I will definitely order these again. It’s always nice finding new bar options other than just Luna bars!

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I also had a couple of pieces of crystallized ginger.

Workout:

I went to my home Crossfit, the one where I first started Crossfit. I haven’t been too much lately, but this time I’m here for the long haul! For strength, apparently we’re doing endurance in preparation for the Crossfit Open, so we did one set of 20 back squats at 60%. Yuck. Yuck yuck yuck. I hate long sets. I used to think 10 was long…I was panting by the end of the set. We then did strict press for a set of 20.

I’m really proud of how I did during the WOD. I Rxed it, and it’s not one I could have Rxed a few months ago.

50 double unders

30 pull ups

30 wall balls

50 double unders

I knew right away that the pull ups would be my slow point here. I started doing sets of 5 kipping but ended up breaking it up even smaller as I went through. The pull up bars here were sort of hard to hold on to, so that made things more difficult.

One of my biggest downfalls for double unders is having tired arms. When my arms are tired, my double unders go. So coming off pull ups and wall balls wasn’t fun. I finished in 7:28. I was the last one to finish, but not by a lot, which I’m proud of!

Dinner:

My mom and I were on our own tonight, so we made one of our favorites, an open faced turkey and havarti sandwich.

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This sandwich was from a cookbook that we first made years ago. It’s mayo+dijon, grated Havarti cheese, red onion, arugula (we used spinach though), turkey, apple, and ground pepper. The whole thing is put in to broil until the cheese is bubbly. We got the Havarti from Trader Joe’s and it was actually pretty different. It was softer and creamier. It was good! On the side, we roasted shaved brussels sprouts with a touch of oil, garlic, and pepper, and then added truffle salt when it came out of the oven. SO good.

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For dessert, I had a piece of gluten free orange cranberry bread. It’s not “healthy” bread, but it’s delicious and that’s good enough for me, especially for dessert!

Here’s the recipe.

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Plus a few milk chocolate chips.

I hope everyone is having a great short week leading up to the big holiday!

 

Fall Weekend: Caturday and Pumpkin Bread

I’m starting this post on Saturday afternoon while watching college football, with Yoyo snuggled in at my side. It seems like the 80+ degree weather finally broke, and it was a chilly 43 this morning!

This has been a really low key weekend, which was needed after a few crazy ones. I was traveling the last 2 weekends, and had an action packed weekend the week before that with my parents visiting.

Friday morning began with a great Crossfit workout—front squats and deadlifts! I love anything with power movements. We did 10×2 front squats, and I used 125 lbs. The WOD was

15 deadlifts (135 lbs)

15 box jups

15 deadlifts

15 box jumps

rest 3 minutes. repeat.

For breakfast I had something a little bit different. I’m trying to make my way through the freezer, so I made a protein smoothie with a frozen banana, milk, cocoa powder, and Quest salted caramel protein.

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I haven’t been feeling meat as much lately for some reason, so my lunch salad was meatless. Pears, dried cranberries, and lots of goat cheese in champagne vinaigrette, with crackers on the side.

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And a pice of chocolate.

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I can’t believe I only have 2 weeks left of zoo life!

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My wild Friday night included plan at a coffeeshop to work on my online Microbiology class. With all the travel lately, it’s kind of been put on the back burner.

I started out by ordering a sandwich. I ordered it on GF bread but I don’t think they actually gave me GF bread because I’ve gotten sandwiches there before that don’t look like that! Despite the results of my gluten experiment, I decided I didn’t want to lose mental capacity so I just ate around the bread. The sandwich was turkey, swiss, and herb cream cheese with a side salad.

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After enjoying that, I ordered a baked pumpkin maple latte (decaf!) to sip on while completing an assignment.

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I’m not normally a sweet coffee person, but this was no Starbucks. It was really delicious and actually tasted like coffee!

I was planning on watching Game 7 of the 2014 World Series (I have it on DVD) afterwards, but I was craving a book so I stopped by Target to pick one up. This was my night:

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I like this book! There’s definitely a lot to it, and it’s fairly dark.

Saturday morning I was supposed to teach spin, but no one came to the class. Instead, I headed out to a 9am Crossfit for some clean and jerk work and a partner WOD. In groups of 3, we split 75-60-45-30-15 push press (65), calories on the rower, and kettle bell swings.

Afterwards, it was time to hit up a St. Louis must-do.

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Rumor was they have GF donuts Friday and Saturday mornings, and I picked up a GF pumpkin spice cake donut!

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Of course I had to try a bite in the parking lot (but managed to save the rest for when I got home because it needed milk).

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It was good, but to be honest, I think I would have liked it more baked. I don’t really like the fried flavor. But my first donut in a very long time was well enjoyed.

I also really like this milk, so I wanted to mention it. It’s filtered to have lower lactose and high protein than normal milk, but mostly I like it because I actually have a pretty strong fear of sour milk, and I feel like if it’s super filtered that’s less likely to be an issue!

My entire day basically consisted of reading my book on the coach with kitties. Mostly Yoyo, but Scooby joined us for a little bit. He sat on my lap but kind of spilled onto Yoyo and was directly on top of him, so I LITERALLY had cats on cats.

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Saturday night I went to a Crossfit night out.

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My local Crossfit here organized a night out at a local bar. It was a really fun night; it was nice to actually talk to people outside of working out (though of course the topic of Crossfit was brought up once or twice 😉 ). It was really interesting learning more about people’s lives outside of them gym, and of course I had to try some local craft beer! It just makes me all the more sad to leave these people in 2 weeks!

One really nice thing was that it was within walking distance of my house, and while the temperatures have dropped quite a bit these past few days, it was a really nice, crisp night to walk.

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Sunday morning at 6am, Yoyo busted open my door and before I knew it I had 2 kitties snuggled up on my bed.

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Despite their antics, I managed to sleep a little bit longer!

My main event for Sunday morning was going to Crossfit run group. It’s basically just people meeting at the gym to go run together. There was a short and a long option. The short was 1.5, and the long was 5…1.5 seemed a lot shorter than what I was hoping for, so I decided I might as well go for 5 and turn back if necessary. I hadn’t run this far since my stress fracture; I had only run 4 miles 2x, and 3 is my normal distance.

My foot performed fantastically! I was able to cover 5 miles pain-free, which is pretty huge. My legs were feeling it by the end though! A group of 3 of us did the 5 mile option, and apparently our average pace was 9:36, which is not too shabby! It felt good to run longer again, and I’m sure I’ll be feeling it tomorrow. My plantar fasciitis is flaring a little bit from the increased effort though. Running on my foot is pretty variable. I think the fact that I spent the entire previous day on the couch is part of why I was able to cover those miles pain free. I walk and stand a ton at work, which limits my mileage.

I was HUNGRY when I got home and had a few gulps of chocolate milk while preparing lunch.

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I messed up flipping my egg, but somehow it turned out perfectly bread shaped! I’ll take it! I made an open-faced egg sandwich with American cheese. On the side was a salad with goat cheese and dried cranberries.

After lunch, I facetimed a friend back home, while mixing up pumpkin bread (and dividing the recipe in half!) Somehow, despite multitasking, I think I managed to not screw anything up.

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I asked my mom to dig up my favorite pumpkin bread recipe which I haven’t made in a little while. The recipe is from so long ago, it’s 1. pre-blog and 2. on paper!

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I tried to find the link to the recipe, but I can’t find it!

I cut the recipe in half, used GF flour, and used a bit under 1/3c brown sugar and 1/3c maple syrup in place of the full cup of sugar. I also sprinkled a few chocolate chips on top of one side!

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Delicious!

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Chilly temperatures+pumpkin bread?

NOW it’s fall.

I spent the afternoon studying. I went to Rise for a cozy decaf cappuccino.

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Dinner tonight was another warm fall favorite: soup! I heated up some mushroom lentil soup and topped it with fat free cheddar (kind of rubbery but trying to use it up!). On the side I had some buttered toast.

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For dessert, I sautéed up some apples with butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. I don’t think I added nearly enough butter, and the edges got sort of caramelized. I served that with some vanilla Halo Top.

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It was a great, relaxing, low key cozy fall weekend!

What do you like to do when the temperature drops?

Well That Was Interesting—Gluten Experiment

Hi friends! I’m currently in quite a good mood. I got some very unexpected good news today, and I had an awesome fall run after work in Forrest Park! It was my fast casual run post stress fracture!

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It’s nice to see some 8:xx back in there! I just signed up for my annual Turkey Trot as well. In the past, I’ve done the 10k, but decided to actually use good judgment and just do the 5k this year. As much as I wanted to do the longer distance, it just wouldn’t be smart to run twice as much as my normal with a sketchy foot.

I wanted to share some tidbits from my Wednesday with you. Spoiler alert: I had my first actual gluten (minus tiny amounts accidentally 2x) in 14 months. Whatt??

I woke up pretty hungry on Wednesday morning thanks to a full day of travel and had my usual Cinnamon Apple Cheerios pre-workout. The workout of the day was a Crossfit shoulder killer. I basically trashed my creaky shoulder, but it’s fine because that’s how it is going to get stronger. I just need a few days off from overhead! We did 8×3 push jerks, which I used 85 pounds for. Technically we were supposed to do 70% but my 155 lb one rep max was pre-shoulder injury when I was a whole lot stronger. Then, we did an EMOM for 14 minutes of 5 strict presses on the even minutes and 5 strict pull ups on the odd. I did the pull ups with a band. Immediately following this we did 2 minutes of max burpees. My shoulders are feeling it today, that’s for sure!

Post-workout I had the best breakfast. Cottage cheese with pumpkin butter, sunflower seed butter, and a side of strangely delicious blueberries.

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For lunch, I made a hummus, egg (microwaved), and goat cheese salad with some Glutino crackers on the side.

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For snack I had a small berry granola bar.

Before the moment of truth, I have some obligatory zoo pictures. Because I only have 2 weeks left.

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Bae <3 <3 <3

I’m going to miss my girls!

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For my gluten of choice, my friend who works at Panera brought me an M&M cookie. Free food=instantly more delicious.

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And then it was time.

*insert jaws theme*

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I nervously took a bite. And waited. Then another. I had 1/4 of this large cookie to start, and another bite about 20 minutes later when I felt ok.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. It was hard to imagine it would cause a vicious flare up because I haven’t had anything like that in a while.

If I had to guess what would happen, it would have been what did happen.

My stomach felt ok. My brain stopped working. That was interesting. I had my part of the cookie about an hour before I was off work, and I was inputting data into an excel sheet. And suddenly I kept messing up. I was in this weird fog. I was so incredibly tired that I felt like I needed to fall asleep on the spot. My brian was moving in slow motion, and I couldn’t quite get my brain to communicate with my fingers.

Does this surprise me? Not really? If you look way back into the depths of my blog, you’ll see posts from freshman year of me wondering if I had a problem with gluten because I’d eat pancakes for breakfast and then in class afterwards suddenly feel overwhelmingly and all-consumingly tired.

But I didn’t flare. That being said, I literally had less than half a cookie. At a point when my stomach was 100% perfect to start. I still don’t totally trust it in all situations, and right now it’s not worth risking the fear of a flare. Plus the brain fog? I think I’ll keep avoiding it. But this means I don’t have to worry about small amounts/contamination in things like soy sauce. And if we’re being 100% real here, I really just wanted to do this trial now to know if I can eat the top off pumpkin cheesecake at Thanksgiving without worrying about any crumbs from the crust sneaking their way in. And I think that will be ok!

Because priorities.

For dinner, I made cheesy polenta with an egg that I seriously messed up flipping, and mushrooms with spinach sautéed in garlic and soy sauce.

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And of course I needed baseball watching snacks.

I had a little bit of vanilla Halo Top with a GF snicker doodle and some Trader Joe’s Pumpkin O’s.

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As for baseball? I just wanted a good game, and this certainly delivered. The fact that I have no investment to either team and yet I’m crazy nervous about the game is why baseball is the greatest sport ever. I’m happy for the Cubs. I really disagreed with some of Joe Maddon’s (the coach of the Cubs) decisions, and I’m glad that the questionable decisions came back to bite him despite the final outcome!

Did you watch the World Series? Thoughts?

WIAW—Guinea Pigging it Up?

Hi friends! Welcome to another WIAW.

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Before we get into my full day of eating, I wanted to show you guys what I did with my Soulard Farmer’s Market haul. I sautéed the zucchinis in garlic and nutritional yeast, and served them with fresh mozzarella and some of my mini heirloom tomatoes. Cookies were an appetizer because I stopped at Target after spin to pick them up, and it was late, and I was about to eat my arm, and if you thought I’d make it the mile home without breaking into them….

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Ok, time for WIAW!

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For some reason, I’ve gotten in the habit of having a flapjacked muffin on my days off. We’ll go with it. This is only my second time having the apple cinnamon, but it’s good! For some reason it’s hard to find. The other day, I was wondering if, since I hadn’t known this flavor existed, there were other flavors I was missing out on?

The answer is yes. There’s a S’mores flavor! I ordered a 4 pack online to try, so I’m excited for that! Plus packages are awesome. But food packages? Amazing.

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I also had a few snap pea crisps (I often randomly have a few of these at meals) and half of a mediocre peach. Target has has awesome nectarines, but I didn’t see any when I went so I got these. They’re fine. Not amazing. The season is ending, I suppose!

Before getting ready for the day, I did half of a Blogilates ab video. I’ve neglected these. They’ve gotten so much harder haha. Sidenote: I got a yoga mat to do at home ab workouts and hopefully some yoga classes. I didn’t realize until rolling it out in class for the first time that it has a rocket ship on it. It’s pretty cool! But I think it might be meant for small children…it’s also sort of short, but good enough for me!

My coffeeshop of the week was The Mud House in Cherokee. This is my second to last one on the list!

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As per usual, I got a decaf cappuccino.

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I liked this a lot! It had that bitter/rich high quality coffee flavor. A little darker than some, which I would say is not quite as much my preference. I would say this falls about at the same level as Rise, but I might rank it a hair above because they had food!

They had amazing sounding grits, and an amazing sounding goat cheese sandwich (and they had GF bread), but after much deliberation, I went with the soup of the day, which was vegetarian split pea.

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It was definitely a good call. I swear, my entire diet could consist of soup, salad, and sandwiches, and I’d be a happy girl.

I actually had a pretty productive day, school wise. I was dragging a bit in the morning, but with my low caffeine tolerance, the decaf was enough to make me WIRED. Not bad wired, but wired to the point of happiness and productiveness. (Note: I’m very certain I didn’t accidentally get full caf because that actually would kill me.)

I did a little bit of coffeeshop hopping today. Actually, I planned my entire day around visiting the other coffeeshop. Why? It’s trial day.

I haven’t had gluten in over a year. Not exactly at least. I accidentally had a tiny bit twice (that I know of): Thanksgiving (eating the top off of cheesecake and getting some of the crust) and a mislabeled turkey meatball. Both caused flares, but not terrible ones. (Thanksgiving wasn’t great partly because the excess of other things that make me flare.) The last time I intentionally ate gluten was a few crackers the night before my endoscopy. I spent most of the night lying on the floor, super nauseous, feeling like death.

But it’s been a long time. My gastroparesis is so much better. I don’t have to take stomach meds daily in order to function anymore. The fear of a flare is not constantly on my mind. Part of this is managing what and how I eat, but I honestly think my stomach has healed a lot, even since the spring. I’m not going to take over this WIAW with talk about all that, expect another post soon, but the sum of it all is that it was time.

I couldn’t think of anything that I wanted enough to test for a long time. But I don’t envision myself having to be meticulous about gluten long term; it’s a pain, and I hate the social situations I find myself in (I know it really isn’t a big deal to have to avoid a food, but for some reason I’m really self conscious about this.) But then I discovered a true St. Louis staple, and I could not find anywhere that had it gluten free: Gooey Butter Cake. After much research, I learned that Park Avenue Coffee had some of the best gooey butter cake, so this afternoon I stopped by to pick up some of the original (they have tons of other flavors too).

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I decided to plop down there for an hour or so with my textbook, so I got some peppermint tea (#nomorecaffeine).

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For a snack pre-workout, I had a Luna bar and the rest of my peach from earlier.

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Around this time, I started feeling off. (I should note I started this post earlier in the day.) I was feeling pretty wired earlier in the afternoon, and I thought I was just really sensitive to even decaf, but then I started to feel a little like death. I think my cappuccino must have accidentally been full caf. To preface, I’m super sensitive to caffeine. It runs in my family, but when I developed my stomach illness my caffeine tolerance dropped to zero and it makes me really sick now. I started to feel really sick and shaky. It felt exactly like one of my flare ups. I hoped that Crossfit would make me feel better. I walked up and almost turned right around because I felt so rough. Luckily, copious amounts of stomach meds and some movement helped me feel a little better.

The workout started with an EMOM for 10 minutes of 3 burpees+1 deadlift+hang power clean+jerk. I stuck with 85# because I was still really shaky and didn’t want anything too heavy overhead.

The WOD was 2 8 minute AMRAPS of 200m run, 10 russian kb swings, 10 overhead lunges at 55#. Lunges are still a little hard for me with my foot. I can’t get my knee to the ground on one side without over stretching it.

After my workout, I did feel better but still rough. I decided that there was no way I could do my cake trial. I decided to take it as a sign from the universe that maybe I’m not ready, and not as healthy as I thought. Plus, when I got back to my car, I heard a commercial about all kinds of GF products, which I’ve never heard anything like before. Another sign. I don’t normally believe in non-baseball superstitions, but come on.

On the plus side, from an academic perspective, it’s very interesting to better realize that too much caffeine feels the same as a flare up, and my flare ups probably involved over activation of the central nervous system. Huh.

After my workout, I knew I needed to get some food in. This WIAW sure didn’t go as planned, but that’s life.

I knew I was low in calories for the day (I don’t think I got nearly enough food in after cycling last night) and needed to make sure I got something in without making myself feel worse. I had some GF crackers and a plain piece of GF bread while I started making soup.

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What made the biggest difference in how I felt was making some hot ginger honey water. Discovering how much ginger helps has been life changing.

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It’s funny, the soup I was making I used to consider my “magic soup” back when I was really sick this past winter. It cured several flare ups. I was actually planning on making it before I even had wanted to do a trial, so I guess it worked out! I did it the lazy way though. The recipe for sweet potato, pear, and leek soup is here. I cheated.

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I wanted to use sweet potato soup, but couldn’t find any. the butternut squash worked out perfectly though! I took the boxed soup and added the pear (I cooked it then blended it in to a little of the soup before stirring everything together—it’s a small blender), and then adding all the flavorings. I halved all the spices because I was making a smaller volume (except ginger because #magic). And then made the croutons.

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I swear I felt better with each bite.

Finally, a little bit later, I had a Luna bar because I needed more gentle food.

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As for the gooey butter cake? It did not go to waste. My intern buddy came over to take care of it and watch baseball with me 🙂

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So was I a guinea pig today? Not in the way I was expecting. But seriously, what are the odds the one day in the year I got caffeine was the one I had planned on trying gluten for the first time in a year? Unless the act of buying gluten caused me to flare? haha. Honestly I felt like I was doing something illicit, buying the cake.

So I guess my trial is on the shelf for now….

I apologize for the depressing health-related turn this post took—it was definitely unexpected!