Thursday, May 28, 2009

Live Simpler... Lose Weight?

In January 2008 I began thinking that I needed to simplify. My weekdays consisted of wake, commute, work, commute, read or take classes, sleep. While that is a simple daily schedule, I couldn’t find time to exercise, ate out all of the time because there wasn’t time to cook (and I don’t enjoy doing it because I'm really quite bad at it - who wants to eat bad food?), and although creative ideas came to mind, quite often I always felt too tired and stressed to follow through on any of them. My weekends consisted of errand after errand. I decided that I wasn’t having enough fun so I needed a change.

I started my simplicity change with hopping off of public transportation a mile from work before work and walking the rest of the way past a lake. I walk it early in the morning when few people are out, there’s a cool breeze, and the birds are just waking so it’s a very calming place.

Well, I began to feel better after a couple of weeks so I started to look at my eating habits. I stopped eating donuts for breakfast and stopped eating out for lunch and dinner. I ate more salads, fruit, nuts and grains and less meat, bread and desserts. That August I started eating a mainly raw diet after trying to see if my allergy/breathing problems were related to food. I already knew I was allergic to caffeine and shellfish and now realized that any kind of cheese made with milk also gave me the same reaction.

Many people wouldn’t eat this way and enjoy it but food preparation now takes me less time and it tastes better since I’m not killing it with my bad cooking. I eat raw fruit, vegetables, sprouted grains, seeds, nuts and occasionally raw fish (sashimi).

I eat simpler, feel fuller longer because of the fiber and fats, enjoy my meals more, feel better physically (woohoo! No more allergies either) and I’ve finally dropped weight that I’ve been wanting to for many years (25 pounds). I didn’t spend money on new exercise equipment, don’t belong to a gym, and don't take any diet pills or pay for any specially prepared ‘diet’ meals.

I have a pair of sneakers and make sure to work up a sweat when wearing them by simply taking a daily walk and doing old fashioned calisthenics (crunches, push-ups, pull-ups, squats, calf raises and dips). I eat three healthy meals a day plus just as many snacks.

Sure, there are days when I don’t walk (maybe that morning it’s 85 degrees and muggy), or times when I eat something that’s not raw (like at a party). But I’m trying to enjoy life while not depriving myself so a few days of a more relaxed schedule here and there aren't a big deal. I feel really healthy for the first time in years so I must be doing something right more often now than in my past. Simple.


  1. Right on! Congratulations on the weight (from someone who still hase ~40lbs to drop) and kicking the allergies!

    I was put on an elimination diet years ago by my then naturopath to see if what seemed like hayfever was actually a food allergy. After eating nothing but grains (no wheat), veggies (no nightshades), and fruit for 4 weeks...then slowly adding one food per week for another 6 weeks...we figured out that I react to cow dairy and processed wheat products.

    Now I find out that I also react to soy in the same way, and my reaction to dairy has allergies are funny that way, they can come and go the more or less you eat of the offending food item.

    So right now I eat mainly raw veggies and rice (long grain brown and wild only). It's not as bad as my coworkers who see me eat the same tub of rice everyday think it is! And it's cheap, so I can save even more for my move...and even more important, it's simple. No planning, worrying, etc about what to eat that day.

  2. Hi Jesse,

    I'm glad to hear that you figured out your allergies too! They can be so complicated. After I started eating (raw) like this, even the smallest of things are now noticable. Everything is more flavorful. Even veggies and rice.

    So, when can we expect to hear more about your up coming move on your blog? Where and why, if that's not too personal. I'm very excited for you!! Curious too. Sorry to hear that you'll be moving from Seattle at about the time we'll be moving there though.


  3. Good job figuring out how to eat simple! I'm still trying to get my husband off meat. If you want to know why eating the way you do caused you to lose all that weight, you should check out the pH Miracle. I can't remember who it's by but it's amazing!
    Good job and good luck with your tiny house!

  4. Hi Lelly,

    I'll look for that book, thanks.

    I like your tiny house designs. My favorite is the Bistro. I like how the bathroom walls continue to the ceiling so you could put a skylight for natural light and to help with any moisture problems. Project Rolling Freedom is a great one. Keep up the great work!

    Thanks for the well wishes (we're having a great time building this thing!),

  5. Great job on shifting your eating patterns! I just got a CSA membership, & have garden space.
    Your house will be sooo cool!
    I saw something on 'tiny houses' awhile ago, & thought of the year I lived in a 9x19' house (with loft bed) at Breitenbush (yes, you can be envious:) I had a 2 burner propane stove & baby fridge, shared bathroom was ~ 20' from my house. I adored it - off the grid, with geothermal heat & electicity provided by Eleanor (the 1921 generator on the river)
    A 17' D octagon was prob my favorite home - also a year. W bed in a 3/4 loft - that house has a skylight now (I wanted one!) also had a bath & kitchen that was shared by 4 octagons (same size as our houses, so nice size kitchen.
    My home now seems HUGE - 950 sf - & way too much stuff! Am working on paring down again! Good luck finding a place in Seattle to 'park' your wee home.

  6. Dia,

    Wow, you've lived in some interesting places! Yes, the Breitenbush one has me envious...

    I had a CSA membership up until recently too. Weekly I'd get really great, fresh, organic veggies very inexpensively. I'd get many vegetables that I'd never tasted before so it was interesting every week.


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