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Diet

First Goal Reached, Water and Routine

Well, last week on the 17th, I stepped onto the scale and held my breath – surprised to see that I had hit my first big goal – 150.6lbs! In the six weeks since I’d first weighed myself, I had lost 11lbs. Not bad! I’m very pleased to had hit my first zero mark; the next is 140, with smaller increments in between. Hopefully I’ll continue the steady loss as I have for the last 11lbs. (That being said, I’m pretty sure I’ve put on some decent muscle mass on my legs from all the walking and running I’ve been doing.)

So some small updates. An online friend of mine who has been following my and Boo’s progress has asked how it’s been going. I updated her, told her how I’ve been doing it. The conversation turned to water – she commented how she had heard that drinking large amounts of water during the day becomes ‘addictive’.

For lack of a better term, I agreed with her and likened it to having a mild hangover if you go without water for a long period of time.

Now, as I mentioned in my last post, I’m not (or wasn’t) a big drinker by nature. Even when it was hot outside, I didn’t have the unconscious urge to drink. In the past, I could honestly go the entire day with one glass downed – or barely even that. It was only when I started to consciously make water a part of my daily routine that my intake increased. Get up out of bed? Pour big glass of water. Get on the Internet? Bring a full cup with me. Cup is empty? Fill it up. Sit down for lunch? Fill up cup. I turned my big blue plastic cup into an attachment; no matter where I was in the house, if I was there for an extended period of time (minus bathroom trips, of course!) I had my cup nearby. (It’s right here next to my as I type this.)

Over the weeks it’s become a norm. Even when I go out for my walks, I take a full bottle of water with me. (And I need it, I down a bottle easily as I get tons thirsty!) When I go out with Boo to visit, I take a bottle of water.

Eventually I developed a new routine and drinking has become natural. The side-effect is that my kidneys are working quite well, if you get what I mean. Whew! But it’s a small price to pay, staying hydrated. Summer is coming up and I’m looking at some serious heat and humidity.

So my friend seemed a little surprised that you could go through withdrawal, or suffer a water hangover. I told her that I personally start to feel a little ick, the way I do when I’ve had alcohol and not much else. That dry in the mouth feeling, the slightly blugh sensation. If I haven’t had a drink in the last few hours, I feel that way. She found that interesting. While it sounds odd, or even bad, that you could suffer ‘withdrawals’ from water, it’s not a bad thing at all. It’s just your body reminding you that you’re not keeping up your usual amount of hydration. I know I’ve gotten a lot better at listening to my body these days.

I’m not really a huge soda fan; I’m actually incredibly sensitive to sugary beverages, even more so if they have caffeine. I also get carsickness at the drop of a hat. On their own, sodas tend to make me feel a little nauseous as the sugar and caffeine rush hits my system. If I’m in a car, that exacerbates it. And if I’m hungry, it’s even more of a nightmare. I end up a shaky, queasy, unhappy mess fighting to control my dizziness and urge to yak. What all this means is I’m naturally not a big drinker of carbonated soda drinks (Coke is the worst), sugary drinks like sweet tea and coffee. I drink a low caffeine green tea with artificial sweetener from time to time to get my sweet fix, but that’s it. For the most part, when I’m drinking out and about, I’m drinking a Powerade, water, or the odd orange juice.

So this transition to drinking more and more water wasn’t hard for me. I don’t have brand name drink cravings or a caffeine dependency. My friend does, however, and she lamented that she couldn’t imagine having to cut down on the soda. I empathised with her, but I’m glad that I don’t have that problem.

But let’s be honest here: water can be boring. It kinda just tastes the same, and when you’re drinking 5 or so cups of it a day, it’s just meh. Since can’t afford to buy water from the store (and there’s a whole mess of controversy on that area anyway), we have to settle for the good ol’ ground well water we got running out of the tap here at home.

Boo and I have taken three steps towards making our water source as readily available and un-boring as possible:

  • A water filter attached to our kitchen sink tap. Cost us about $20 for the whole system. Filters came with it and get replaced every few months. This one is used for filling up cups on the fly and for cooking, washing food and so on.
  • A large water jug with a filter attached to it and a spigot at the bottom to pour water out easily. We set this in the sink, fill it to capacity and put it in the fridge. Easy peasy. It takes up space, but no more than a few bottles of soda or juice. This is our first source of water – it’s nice and clean and cold and ready instantly to drink.
  • And a wide stock of flavors. Yep, that’s our secret. I always have a jug of Crystal Light flavors mixed up so I can have variety in my daily water dose, and I’m currently enjoying Lemonade. Boo recently picked up little Mio squirty things; he’s flavoring his cups on the fly and even taking out the filled bottles I keep stocked in the fridge and squirting those.

With these two filters and a variety of flavors, it’s made the transition easier for us. In the past, Boo and I were making jugs and jugs of sweet tea, buying expensive orange juice and soda pop on sale. I haven’t seen anything but water in various cups, bottles and in different flavors since the year started. It’s helped to make the change in this part of our lifestyle easier.

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