Marriage/Life Partnership and Weight Gain

Marriage/Life Partnership and Weight Gain

Marriage/life partnership can be an amazing journey for many. The hard times and good times that occur along the way, often lead to the strengthening of the relationship.

Changes also happen as couples get older together. One of the things that can change is body weight- namely of the gaining variety.

This post will go into unwanted weight gain/body changes throughout marriages/life partnerships and how it can be remedied-together.

Weight gain/body changes: Getting comfortable

When many people are at the beginnings of their romantic relationships, appearances are usually maintained to keep the other person interested. Once the relationships have been going on for a while, they may feel as though they can loosen up a little.

Then a little becomes a lot.

This leads to gaining weight because a person may think, “she/he/they already loves me so it does not matter what I look like.”

Weight gain/body changes: adulting

As we get older, many of us get settled into our careers. Most of the days then become taken up by working and doing household things after the workday is over.

We also may make some not-so-good choices when it comes to lunch during the day. Something quick may be chosen which might not always translate to being healthy.

When it comes to exercise, workouts may not happen as much (or at all) due to working. They also may have a job that involves a lot of sitting which means less calories are burned throughout the day.

Because of all of this, couples may come home from work and be too exhausted to do a workout.

Weight gain/body changes: pregnancy

Many couples want to have children. The idea of raising a little one and watching them grow, tends to be very exciting.

If a couple chooses to have a child through pregnancy- bodily changes will occur. It takes a lot to grow a baby in the womb! The changes that happen include weight gain, hips widening, breasts increasing in size, stretch mark formation and of course a growing belly.

After the child is born, the changes may remain for at least a few months. For some women though, the changes can last for even longer than that. Stretch marks may not fade completely, weight may be really slow to come off, breasts may become saggy and the abdomen may have loose skin.

Another way pregnancy can cause weight gain/body changes is by the couple becoming very busy taking care of their child once it is born. This can take the focus completely off themselves which allows  good nutrition and exercise to go out the window. In these cases, both individuals (not just the woman who grew the baby!) may gain weight.

Weight gain/body changes: health issues

There are health issues that cause weight gain/body changes. These can arise as couples keep moving through life together. The following are some examples:

  1. Stress- Couples may have to endure a lot of stress due to familial, relationship and/or career related problems. Stress can lead to overeating in some people which leads to weight gain.
  2. Depression- Dealing with depression due to a variety of reasons can cause overeating and/or less of a physical activity level.
  3. Hypothyroidism- The likelihood of having an underactive thyroid increase as we age. One of the symptoms can be weight gain.
  4. Diabetes- Many people become diabetic (type 2) later in life. This can cause weight gain.
  5. Menopause/male hormonal issues- Hormones change as we age which can lead to weight gain.
  6. Medications taken to treat illnesses- Some of the medications we have to take to treat illnesses, have weight gain as a side effect.

Ways to remedy unwanted weight gain/body changes

Couples can work together to get their bodies back in shape. These are some things that they can do:

Exercise related

  • Make it fit into your day/week: This can be done by going over schedules. If a couple has a child (or children), they may have to take turns having one take on the childcare while the other one works out.
  • Figure out workout routines: There are a ton of different ideas for workouts that can be found online. It would be wise for a couple to seek the ideas out and choose what will work for them. They can even workout together!
  • Get home gym equipment if it is in the budget: Since a lot of gyms are closed and/or unsafe in these times, it could be a good idea to purchase some home workout items. A couple can have access to the items whenever they want which may help them stick to their workout routines.

Diet related

  • Look at what they are consuming: Taking a look at the kinds of food they eat on a regular basis, can help them figure out where they are going wrong and what needs to be changed.
  • Figure out each other’s dietary needs: To lose weight, people need to figure out the amount of calories and types of food they need/want to eat so that can happen. Two people in a relationship will most likely have different dietary needs when it comes to getting the scale to go down. They can help one another with this. If this seems difficult, there are weight loss programs out there to look into.
  • Meal/snack planning: It is a good idea to plan out meals and snacks. This is so that the right food that fits new dietary needs are always in the kitchen and pantry. Couples should also make sure to have a “cheat meal” once in a while which could mean getting takeout food.
  • Get on the same page with the new diet: If only one of the people in the relationship is changing up their diet, the other person needs to understand what they will be eating and be supportive. They could even enjoy the same meals together.

Healthcare related

  • Keep track of concerning symptoms: If one or both people in the couple are dealing with mental and/or physical symptoms, it may be a good idea to write down these symptoms daily in a journal. This can possibly help to see if there could be another underlying issue going on which could be causing the weight gain.
  • Attend tele-health appointments together: Since many clinics are limiting the amount of people in the rooms during appointments and the infection cases are increasing rapidly, having a tele-health appointment would be good. The couple can be in the video together and help to make sure all concerns are being covered.
  • Help each other in the management of illnesses: If one or both people in the relationship get diagnosed with a condition that is causing the weight gain, they should support each other in the management of it. If their diagnosis is successfully managed, weight loss may be able to happen easier. That could mean helping make sure that they take their medication daily if they are the kind of person that forgets.
  • Attending counseling sessions- If mental health and/or relationship issues are causing behaviors that lead to weight gain, a couple should consider counseling. Counseling can be done through Zoom now due to the pandemic.
  • Possible medication change: If any medication that is being taken causes weight gain, it might be a good idea to see if a change to it is possible. This could mean reducing the dosage or switching to an entirely different medication that does not cause weight gain (or less of it). A couple can support one another if any side effects occur from weaning off or tapering down on a medication.

One more thing that a couple can do that does not fit into the above categories is using a reward system for getting into better shape. An example of this could be that they can buy something they have been wanting only after a certain weight loss goal is reached. Doing something like this may provide a lot of motivation for the couple.

It can all be done together!

As we get older, our appearance changes. That is just life. Some of changes cannot really be helped.

Weight gain is one of the things that can be fixed though. If a couple is truly devoted to each other and wants to lose some, they will be able to work together to get it done.

There may be bumps along the way of their weight loss journey, but the relationship will end up being even stronger in the end and they will look amazing!

Have any of you been in a long relationship where you found yourselves gaining unwanted weight? If so, did you work together to get it off? I would love to read about your story!

Thanks for reading!

#marriage  #lifepartners  #weightgain  #weightloss  #fitness   #diet  #womenshealth  #menshealth  #weddingplanner   #weddinginvitations

How I Practice Self-Care

How I Practice Self-Care

Happy fall!

This year has been so bad in my opinion. It also has seemingly dragged on for a very long time.

I just wanted to discuss the problems I have had throughout 2020 so far and how I try to make myself feel better from time to time.

This year can kick rocks

I, like many others, had hope for this year. Then the pandemic happened and that hope went flying away.

2020 was supposed to be a start-over year for me. I was unemployed all of 2019 due to the stress of running a home daycare. Things were going okay until I took a virtual assistant position that turned out to be a scam.

I lost a good deal of money that I had saved up and I still owe my parents money to this day because they helped me out. Talk about shitty!

Here are all of the problems I have had so far in 2020:

  1. Felt like I had to start doing daycare again because I have no other job prospects.
  2. The pandemic happened.
  3. Could not even get started doing daycare due to the pandemic.
  4. Got rejected from every single remote position I applied to.
  5. Got sick with COVID-19 in early March.
  6. I have been experiencing post-COVID symptoms since the end of March.
  7. I really want to get blood work and scans done but I can not get a referral due to my doctor thinking it is just anxiety.
  8. I am always worried about being reinfected and the next infection killing me.

Needless to say, I am not having a good time and I do not think many people are either.

Trying to feel better

It is a good idea to practice self-care in these times. I have been trying to do this more instead of constantly reading about all of the bad things that are happening and how I might die a horrible death soon.

In the past few months, I started getting into women’s fiction books. The specific author I really like the most is named, Barbara O’Neal. Her books leave me feeling good inside and have been a perfect escape for me.

Barbara has about 13 books available to buy on Amazon and I am quite certain that I will read all of them! Here are the ones I have read so far and my opinions on them:

The premise for this book is that of a woman finding out that her sister who she thought was dead, is very much alive. This prompts her to try and get in contact with her again.

This is the very first book that I read by Barbara and I am so glad I bought it! Its time on the bestselling list was rightfully deserved. The characters were well developed and the descriptions of the settings were beautiful.

It was an all-engrossing read that I highly recommend to others.

The premise of this book is that of a woman finding out that she inherited a large estate from her mother after her passing. As she tries to figure out what she is going to do about the estate, she gets to uncover her mother’s secrets.

I loved this book and found it really cool. I was very eager to find out what the secrets were and why her mom was hiding the information. It was hard to put down and I read it in about two days.

I highly recommend this book!

The premise of this book is that of an aging, food blogger who meets with other bloggers to decide who gets to inherit her farm. She has to choose between three women with different backgrounds and back stories.

I loved this book and it took me only a day to read it. The fact that it was about bloggers was what made me buy it in the first place. It had great character development and the graphics of their blog posts sprinkled throughout the book, made it all the more interesting.

I would recommend this one, too!

This is the book that I am currently reading from the author. It is just as wonderful as the other ones!

These are the books I have on deck. I am excited to delve into these stories next.

Books, a nice cuppa tea and ambience

I have been sitting down with these books with a cup of hot tea beside me. Doing this is unbelievably relaxing.

Another thing I added a couple days ago into my book reading times is playing nice ambience sounds. It just ties everything together for a great experience.

There are so many ambience videos on YouTube to choose from. This is one I really like:

Self-care is important for all!

We need to take care of ourselves, physically and mentally. Times are really rough right now and it is imperative that we stay as healthy as possible.

I have been struggling a lot this year and my self-care moments really give me some relief.

How are you guys handling this crazy pandemic and what are you doing for self-care?

Thanks for reading!

#selfcare #womensfiction #books #bookworm #tea #coffee #covid19

Thin By Lauren Greenfield + Review

Thin By Lauren Greenfield + Review

I was cleaning out my storage closet recently and found a few coffee-table books, collecting dust. They were bought on a whim years ago and I never really read them.

I decided to actually read/look at one of them!

This post will be discussing the book, Thin by Lauren Greenfield and giving my review on it.

About Lauren Greenfield and her Thin project

Lauren is a critically acclaimed photographer and filmmaker. She has created a few different photo books and documentaries. They all highlight, discuss and critique certain aspects of society.

Thin is one of her projects from 2006 and it focuses on eating disorders. The book and documentary take us inside an eating disorder treatment center called, Renfrew. From there, we get to see a glimpse of what goes on at these centers and the people they serve.

A little about the Renfrew centers

The very first Renfrew center  started in 1985 and was located in Philadelphia, PA. It has since expanded its program reach with centers in Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Illinois, California, New Jersey, Tennessee, Florida and New York.

These centers treat adolescent girls, women and non-binary people with eating disorders. The treatment is emotion-focused and is catered to each person.

There is outpatient, inpatient and day program options available. The daily services include art therapy, family therapy, group therapy, individual therapy, nutritional therapy, exposure therapy and movement/drama therapy.

Each center is staffed with administrative personnel, psychologists, counselors, social workers, nurses, nutritionists and psychiatrists.

My thoughts on Thin

Wow! Everything about this book was haunting.

The pictures of the patients that were at the particular center, had such sad eyes. Their inner pain and strife were picked up so well by the camera. Although I am not sure if they could be hidden.

The stories and diary pages only added to the sadness. These people went through and were going through some really rough times. A couple of them claimed that they did not have much to go back to after leaving the program. Heart wrenching.

Lots of weights are thrown around in the book which could be a trigger for someone with an eating disorder past if they decided to read it. These numbers are scary to see in my opinion because I can not imagine how people must feel going through life weighing so little.

Some of the bodies of the patients at the facility were alarming to me. They look so incredibly frail and it is shocking. As tough as it is to look at, that is the reality of the disorder. It ravages a person mentally and physically.

Ages of the patients pictured, varies. The oldest person in the book is a 63 year old woman. It is upsetting to think that she was suffering for so long. This is a good reminder that it is not just a disorder that can affect young people-it can affect anyone.

Another thing I noticed relating to the age of the patients was that some of them had things like stuffed animals and other items that you would see little kids with. I got the sense that they were stuck at the young age that they were at when their eating disorder manifested.

I found it extremely interesting seeing the daily activities at the center. When a lot of people think of an eating disorder center, they may get an image of someone going in skinny and coming out healthy. This book shows that there is so much in between and that it is not magically over for them afterwards.

One thing that I thought about a lot when looking through the book was the cost of going there. I could not imagine it being affordable and from doing some research-it is not. To read about the patient’s families going bankrupt or losing insurance coverage is another terrible reality of the illness.

I (and many others) know that a lot of people go back to their eating disorder after discharge or recovery. It was still hard to see though that the four main patients profiled in the book lost a bunch of weight shortly after leaving the center.

A great look at mental health

Thin provides a powerful glimpse at a disorder with a high mortality rate. If you are into books about mental health, this may be a great one to get. A word of caution is for those that may be triggered by the images of people in the throes of eating disorders.

Have any of you read this book or seen the documentary? What are your thoughts on it?

Thanks for reading!

#anorexia  #eatingdisorders   #thinproject   #renfrewcenter   #documentaries  #photojournalism  #Laurengreenfield

Am I COVID-19 “Long Hauler”?

Am I COVID-19 “Long Hauler”?

I think so, yes.

Looking at what has been going on with me since March, I am pretty sure that I have had COVID-19 and am suffering some long-term issues from it.

I wanted to talk about it all in this post.

I was sick in March

Around the time that I first started hearing about this new virus, I ended up sick. It was after my husband and son had been sick for about six days. Their symptoms included coughs and high fevers.

My symptoms when I got sick were chills with no fever, slightly tickly throat with post-nasal drainage, loss of appetite, reduced ability to taste, fatigue, stuffy nose and a racing heart in the mornings on the last two days of my illness. I was sick for a total of five days.

My husband’s manager was a confirmed positive in February, so that means he was exposed to the virus. Since we were unable to get tests at that time, we are only presuming that we were positive for it.

What else could it have been?

Two good weeks and then hell

For two weeks after getting sick, I was happy that I beat the virus. At that time I did not know that I could still have lingering issues from it so I thought my life would go on as normal.

In April, all hell broke loose.

I became very angry, irritable and majorly depressed. This was scary to me because I felt completely out of control. I could not sleep anymore. All I did at night was pace around crying and screaming.

I had no idea what was going on with me. People were telling me it was all due to the pandemic news I was reading and that I was working myself up too much over it. That could have been part of it but it felt like something more was happening to me.

I felt like I was literally going crazy.

Then came the physical symptoms: April through June

About a week after the extreme mental issues happened, I started experiencing physical issues. Here is a list of them:

  1. Chest pressure/tightness
  2. Occasional shortness of breath
  3. Racing heart
  4. Heart palpitations
  5. Off balanced feeling
  6. Lightheadedness
  7. Lots of chills without fevers
  8. Headaches
  9. Two bouts of pink eye
  10. Dry and gritty feeling eyes (not Pink eye)
  11. Leg restlessness at night
  12. Occasional night sweats
  13. Tickly throat with drainage
  14. Neck/gland aches
  15. Rashes
  16. Burning feeling on the skin of my arms
  17. Two ear infections/earaches
  18. Tinnitus
  19. Runny nose

All of this was in addition to the mental issues I was having. Not fun at all! I was sure that I was still infected and it scared the crap out of me.

I talked to my doctor about all these things and whether I should get a COVID-19 test done. He said it was probably all related to anxiety and depression then proceeded to offer me a prescription for Celexa (an antidepressant).

I know my body and this was not all due to my mental health. Something bad was going on and I did not know how to make it stop.

It was around June that I read about COVID-19 “long haulers.” These are people that were positive for COVID-19 or presumably so and are still experiencing symptoms after they are supposed to be recovered. Their experiences sounded just like mine.

I still did not know what was going on with me but at least I was not alone in the struggle.

I began to read more about other people’s experiences and took some of their advice. This included me starting to add vitamin B12 into my daily supplement intake.

Mental and Physical symptoms: July to now

My mental health issues went away by early July for whatever reason. I do not know if it was the increase of vitamin D3 or what, but I am definitely not going to complain!

In mid-July, I also noticed that some of the physical symptoms from April-June were going away. Some remain though and they are as follows:

  1. Occasional chest aches- Heat packs help a lot with this.
  2. Occasional shortness of breath
  3. Occasional heart palpitations
  4. Occasional tickly throat with drainage
  5. Tinnitus

I also added more supplements to my daily intake in late July. These include NAC and COQ10. The NAC supplement is actually helping with the occasional chest aches and shortness of breath. I take 1200 mg of it as I type this, but I think I will bump it up to 1800 mg soon.

What I have learned and next steps

I have continued to read a lot about post-covid issues and have even joined the support group on Slack.

One of the things that I learned is that I should have given my body a chance to recover. I did the crazy thing of pushing myself to exercise throughout this whole time (even while I was in the active infection stage). If I had known to wait, maybe I would not have suffered for this long.

Another thing I have learned is that I am not crazy. My body is just confused by this new virus that invaded it and is going a little haywire right now.

Due to the organ damage that has been happening to people who have had COVID-19, I am thinking about talking to my doctor about all of this again. My hope is that he will get me a referral to see some specialists and also get blood work done. I plan on updating this blog with whatever I find out in regards to any damage that I have to my body.

You are not alone either

If anyone reading this is going through post-COVID issues, know that you are not alone. You are not crazy either. We are in this together! This is a great resource to check out:

I would recommend joining the long haulers Slack discussion group as well as the long haulers subreddit. Both have been very helpful for me.

There is so much we do not know about this virus yet, but we are going to get there eventually. Now that so many people are speaking up about the issues they are dealing with after “recovering,” there are medical scientists looking into things more. Hopefully, there will be treatment options for both the active infection phase and the post-infection phase soon.

Do you or someone you know have or have had COVID-19?

Thanks for reading!

#covid19  #postviral  #covid19longhaulers  #physicalhealth  #mentalhealth  #medicalresearch

I Had To Take a Benzo and That Is Okay (For Me and You)!

I Had To Take a Benzo and That Is Okay (For Me and You)!

Mental illness comes with a lot of stigma. This is very unfortunate.

There are people who are struggling inside themselves but feel ashamed to get help. I have been there. It only makes things worse.

I went through a mental health crisis a couple of nights ago wherein, I had to take a medication. For this post, I wanted to talk more about the situation.

It was a terrible night to say the least

I was having a great day with my family. So, I did not expect to have what happened, happen.

I laid down and checked my favorite gossip site like I usually do. Suddenly, my mind was overcome with this feeling of dread and hopelessness. Completely out of nowhere.

I tried to just lay there and ride it out, but I could not. The feelings were overwhelming, and I had to get up. I then proceeded to pace around extremely fast.

Everything felt wrong with me, with the world. I began to scream and cry.

I had to run, and I did. I ran out the door and onto the street. Still screaming, still crying. I do not know if the neighbors heard me or not. I can not imagine what they were thinking if they did.

My husband came to get me and brought me back into the house. He was really worried about me.

Panic attacks and anxiety cause physical symptoms in me too. This meant that I also experienced extreme nausea, shortness of breath, racing heart, lightheadedness and shaking. Not fun!

This was a serious panic attack (I have had more mild ones) and I needed to do something about it. I made the hard decision to take some Valium.

What is Valium?

Most people have heard of Valium before. This is especially true if they have any experience with mental health issues.

It is in the class of drugs called, benzodiazepines. These medications work to provide a calming effect to our minds which in turn helps our bodies out too in certain cases. They are most commonly used for anxiety, panic attacks and seizures.

Benzodiazepines are not without their dangers (like a lot of other drugs). They have side effects which include drowsiness, headaches, abdominal cramps, dizziness and clumsiness. Dependency is another issue with them as many people have become addicted.

Valium is one of the weakest benzodiazepines and has a long half-life (takes a long time for half of it to be metabolized in the body). Tolerance to it can also build up pretty quickly with its use so it is not always good to take long term.

Why it was so hard for me take it

I used to have horrible panic attacks every month around the time of my period. Because of this I was given Valium prescriptions. The dose for me is ¼ of a pill.

I have felt ashamed about needing them once in a while. This is due to the stigma that is attached to mental health problems and the medications that help with them.

I keep refilling the prescription anyways despite rarely ever using them because they do expire after a while.

I hated like hell that I had to take Valium that night, but I needed relief. There was no way I could continue on like that and who knows how long it would last.

It worked

Valium does work very well for me-even at the super tiny dose that I take. Within about 30 minutes, I felt calmness wash over me.

I stopped pacing, screaming and crying. My mind started getting the break it needed.

I finally felt as though I could lay down. When I did, the relief I was looking for continued to come over me. Wrapped in its warmth, I fell asleep.

It is okay to treat a mental health condition

 The stigma that comes with mental health conditions need to go! It makes things worse for people and then they continue to suffer in silence.

I am trying to get over feeling bad about the fact that I suffer with my mental health at times. It is unfortunate because I and many others should not feel ashamed. No one should make us feel ashamed either!

Mental health issues can strike anyone at any time. This fact, this truth-needs to be normalized.

We should be able to have open and honest conversations about what we are experiencing without being looked down upon.

Do not be afraid to seek help

If you are struggling with your mental health, please do not hesitate to get help. If someone you know is struggling with their mental health, support them in any way you can.

Everyone deserves to have the best life they possibly can which means having their mental health taken care of.

Have you ever taken Valium or any other type of benzodiazepine?

Thanks for reading!

#mentalhealth  #struggling  #panicattack  #anxiety  #medication