Friday, December 30, 2011

Tis a Writer's Life for me! - writers on diets.

And while I'm on the subject of difficult things about being a writer, let me add that being a writer means parking ones behind in one's chair for long periods of time!  And let's face it, that position of inactivity is not the most conducive to a trim, fit figure! 

Now, I know many jobs these days require long hours sitting, but hey, I don't think that's the way God intended for us to live our lives. Our bodies need to be active and moving in order to be healthy. Back in the time periods I write in, everybody except the very rich worked hard all day long. Men and women got up before dawn to milk cows and start ovens and bake bread and hunt and fish and farm.  I bet their bodies were lean and muscular.  And speaking of muscular, have you ever seen a sailor's arms?  Oh my!! Is it warm in here? 

But I digress.  (How did I get on that topic?)  Anyway, many of us have no choice but to sit down for our modern day jobs, so how do we keep in shape?  I can tell you that this past year I've put on at least 10 pounds, and I'm determined to shed those extra pounds and lean up as much as a middle-aged woman can. Not for vanity's sake (I'm way past that!) but for health's sake.  You see, I've come to believe that many of our modern day health problems are related to what we eat and how much exercise we get. In fact, I just got done reading a book my daughter loaned me called: The Beauty Detox Solution, and although the author goes a bit overboard for me, I leaned so much about eating right.

So this is what I'm planning on doing in 2012
Eating tons more raw veggies and fruits (all organic)
Avoid Gluten as much as possible
Don't mix proteins and carbs
Don't mix fruit with any meal
Start every meal with a salad
Take a probiotic and digestive enzyme with each meal
Grow my own sprouts to put in salad and sandwiches (super easy)
Eat a mostly vegetarian diet (turns out many veggies have protein in them!)
Avoiding sugar
Walking fast at least 40 minutes a day or getting on my exercise bike for 30.

Believe me, it's not easy to get up out of my chair, especially when I'm in the middle of some awesome scene like a sword fight or a sea battle or the hero and heroine's first kiss. In fact, I've been known to sit in my chair for hours on end. But, I'm determined to get healthy.. I believe God wants us to live healthy lives so we are better equipped to serve Him. Being healthy will also help my mind to function better and that means better writing and better books!

How about you? Want to join me?


  1. Fri Dec 30th,
    "Morning, MaryLu."
    Oh ouch ... this is truly where 'the rubber hits the road' ! Oh, I definitely need to lose some weight ... and exercising is not my thing. But, I also know I have NOT been eating right at all ! Hence, I feel lethargic and so lacking in energy ! Yes, I should get on some 'healthy dieting' prospect ... as "WE ARE WHAT WE EAT" !!! Thanks for the great advice and wise counsel !
    Here's to "healthier eating" ... now, and in the New Year !
    A Happy and Blessed 2012 wished to 'everyone' !
    Take care, and, God Bless,
    In Him, Brenda Hurley

  2. I too sit at a desk all day. I recently strained a neck muscle...sitting looking at my lap top on the couch! My husband pointed out that my lack of exercise isn't always about losing weight, but about gaining strength so I don't get injured on the couch, lol! I'm in it. I need to eat healthier and limit my indulgences and certainly sneak some exercise in there (okay, a lot more exercise!). Last night was my first walk in ages and I felt great, so worth it!

  3. Brenda, I'm glad you're going to join me!! It's so true that lack of exercise makes you feel lethargic.
    JMB, I had to chuckle at your strained muscle on the couch story. LOL. So glad you went for a walk.. it takes time, but it's so worth it, isn't it? I remember feeling fit and strong and it felt marvelous! I want to get back there.. Let's do it!

  4. Count me in. I'm pretty consistent with excercise in the summer because my dogs and horses keep me active. It's the wintertime that does me in--too cold, wet, and nasty to be outside for very long. But we have a new treadmill at our house, and I'm determined to put it to good use. (Especially since I've figured out I can walk and read a book at the same time :-)

    JMB, I messed up a shoulder using a computer at work that was set at a bad angle. It wasn't mine, but I had to use it for several weeks for a special project. By the time I figured out what was causing my shoulder pain, the damage was done. The chiropractor said he sees a lot of strains/injuries caused by poor posture/positioning at computers. But it is rather embarassing to say your injury was caused by a computer mouse! :-/

  5. I think that there are way too many distractions that keep us inside and away from outside. But I think you're right about our health being affected by the food we eat. I think if we learn a bit of self control, and to make healthier choices, obesity wouldn't be so bad in America. Plus, you feel so much better, right?

  6. I am all for this! I am tired of having no energy and just feeling blah. I definitely need to lose some weight and just get healthy in general!

  7. You can count me in, too, MaryLu, I've really slowed down lately. I am determined to exercise more, starting with my wii fit program I was doing before my back went out. I have to take it slow, but I really need to get active again. Of course, whenever I see my grandson, I get plenty of exercise. He won't let me sit still for too long. LOL
    As far as eating right, I try, especially since I found out my cholesterol was high. I indulged a bit over the holidays, but now I need to get back on track. So, here is to a healthy and happy New Year to one and all!

  8. CDees, yes, it's cold and rainy here in the winter so I invested in a stationary bike and hey! I found I can read my Kindle while exercising. That certainly makes the time go by faster!

    Eszter, yes.. if you take care of yourself, you feel so much better! You have more energy, your outlook is brighter, you sleep better, think clearer.. it is so worth it! I hate it that Americans are so out of shape!

    All right, Emma! Let's do it!

  9. I'm definitely on board, too. I seem to always be sitting at my desk - doing homework, writing, playing computer games...I do eat very healthily, but that inactivity is catching up with me! :-P But I've signed up for a spinning class at my college, and I'm hoping the group dynamic will motivate me.

  10. That's what I need, Debbie! A grandson to keep me active!! I need to pray for that this year.
    Sapphire, what is a spinning class? Like weaving?

  11. Spinning is indoor bicycling. :-)

  12. Count me in!! I have realized for a while that I need to be more active, but it's really hard when there's no trails or gyms around. I love boxing but in our apartment right now there is no place to hang the punching bag! :/ We just got a Kinect so I am planning on getting a bunch of fitness and dancing games for that.

    MaryLu, I have some food questions. First of all, what is gluten? I have heard of people being allergic to it, but that's about it. Why shouldn't you mix proteins and carbs? And what do you mean by not mixing fruit with any meal?

  13. I am all for nixing my addiction to carbs and that means no white sugar and no white flour. I've got to figure out how to get myself moving in January.

    MaryLu, I'm also curious about the not-mixing proteins and carbs. I thought we were supposed to eat a little bit of each meal.

    Plus --- that's like saying no beans which are both a starch and a protein. hmmmm. it's all a mystery.

    (PS I gained 8lbs. the 6lbs I lost plus two to grow on)

  14. Ah.. spinning. okay. Never heard that term.

    Sarah, Gluten is a substance found in wheat products.. so anything like bread or cake or pasta.. anything made from wheat. It's the stuff they add that makes it fluffy and light.. so a gluten free bread is usually very dense and hard. It's found naturally in wheat, but because we add so much of it commercially, many people are becoming allergic. I have a sensitivity to it so I'm going to try and cut down on it.

    Regarding proteins and carbs, I just read a nutrition book that said the stomach produces a different enzyme for carbs than it does for proteins, but unfortunately, if you eat them together the enzymes produced sort of cancel each other out and what you end up with is a bunch of food that's really hard to digest. I know some nutritionists say you can eat them together, but this really made sense to me so I'm going to try to keep them separate. The books says this is why so many people have digestive issues. Yes, beans are both protein and carb.. but many people have trouble digesting them.. right? They cause people to have gas.
    The book also said fruit should be eaten on an empty stomach to get the full benefit because it will ferment and sour if you put it on top of a full meal. Who knows? It just made sense to me.
    But yes.. it's the refined white sugar and flour that is so bad for you. And it's what I love too! Nothing better to me then a fresh donut. Yum.
    8 lbs last year, Debra? I beat you at 10. :-)

  15. well. I say 8 because I haven't weighed myself in a couple weeks. and I don't plan to for at least two more. haha! it might well be 10by now.

    This will take some adjusting to split up carbs and protein but I'm willing to try it. I'm used to a very stringent (if boring) diet once I get away from my carb addiction

  16. Ah, yes. Food. Exercise. I'm so with you in mind. It's my body that seems to be resisting. Actually, I suppose it's really my mind... I know it's right to eat healthy and take care of my body. There are so many benefits, and I would feel so much better than I do. I know this. But the doing is so hard! I know the right way, yet I still do the wrong way.(Didn't Paul have something to say along those lines in the book of Romans?) But, I seriously need to do this ... count me in!
    Thanks, ladies for the spinning comments! I had to chuckle at those!

  17. I'm totally with you, Caroline! The mind is willing, but the flesh is so weak!! So, let's keep each other accountable.. I'll post on my progress here every now and then and see how everyone is doing. :-)
    But for right now, I'm going to have another Christmas cookie. Well, someone has to finish them off! LOL

  18. Speaking of Yuletide munching, a friend just gave us a basket of goodies...including yummy snack food and cherry drop candy! Not the best for dieting (especially after eating the last round of our neighbors Christmas jelly cookies!), but oh, so good! Well, I'll just have to resign myself to dieting during Lent, LOL! What does everyone think of that idea?

    I posted something yesterday on this blog, but I'm not sure if I did it right (it may well have been lost to the ages....)so I'll just repeat what I said! I am currently reading one of Ms. Tyndall's books, The Red Siren, and I was wondering if she had an email through which I could write my comments in a bit more length than I am allowed here? It's fine if she doesn't have such an email; I was just wondering! I am also working on a Christian historical fiction book of my own that's set on the eve of the American Revolution, and I would greatly appreciate her input on some of the plot twists I'm wrestling with.

    Here is my email through which she can contact me if she has the chance:

    God Bless,
    Avellina Balestri

  19. Oh, I can't imagine not eating wheat. Or not eating carbs and protein together... :/ A lot of my favorite meals include both.

    Hi Avellina! If you scroll to the top of this page and click "My Website", it will take you to MaryLu's site. At the top of that page there is a link that says contact. There you can send her a message and include your email address :)

  20. Have any of you tried archery? It really works the arm and shoulder muscles. Mine hurt for about the first week, but I could feel them getting stronger. You also have to stand to shoot the arrow, and then hike over to retrieve it if it misses the target. Guess who hd fun pretending to be Robin Hood or Maid Mariann? :D

  21. Hi Avellina, I got your message and sent you an email yesterday (or was it the day before?) Anyway, check your spam.. it might be in there. Otherwise, just go to my website, like Sarah said, and click on Contact. And, doesn't it seem that just when you've resigned to diet, friends give you gifts filled with goodies?? LOL.

    Sarah..yes, we are conditioned to eat protein and carbs together in America.. I mean.. hamburgers and sandwiches are our mainstay. Sigh.. But I do feel better when I don't eat them together.. I seem lighter and able to digest better.. might just be in my mind. :-)
    Eszter, I want to try archery!!! It sounds like so much fun! I've always wanted to learn. I just might invest in some arrows. Great idea!

  22. Thank you, Ms. Tyndall and Sarah McBride! I wonder if my computer is mistaking your email for AOL junk mail. Computers have a queer perception of things sometimes ;-) I'll have to check the spam....sorry if I've caused minor confusion! If all else fails, I will do as you both suggested and check out your website!

    Oh, by the way, I think the archery idea Eszter mentioned is terrific! I've always been a fan of the Robin Hood legends. Unfortunately, I never had the time to take up the time-honored sport!

    God Bless,

  23. I FOUND IT!!! Your were right; the email had been swallowed by spam!It seems as it is in the Christmas munching mood as well, LOL!

    God Bless,

  24. Ezster, I tried archery a little bit in high school. I did like it, but I don't have anywhere to shoot. And yes, I am a Robin Hood fan, too :D

    Avellina, first of all I want to say that is a beautiful name!! But also you have a great sense of humor lol. I'm laughing at the image of your computer "eating" your email :) Glad you found it!

    And happy new year, everyone!

  25. Love the pictures! put me to shame!
    I want to be healthy but I'm so lazy! After school I eat a snack and usually not a very good one. I plan to eat a good one but as soon as I open the door it's like I can't stop myself.
    I end up getting no exercise because I stay up so late doing home work and then I like to have a few minutes of reading. Then when I have time on the weekend I end up sleeping in really late.
    So I've tried to make sure I eat right but that went downhill fast because my family doesn't buy the things that are needed. And my father has some kind of addiction to sugar right now...he consumes WAY more than 2000 calories for starters. I feel bad.
    Someday.... and I am NOT a morning person. I get up and sleep in a chair. I don't get up and exercise...too bad because that's the most oportune time.

  26. So glad you found my note, Avellina! I look forward to hearing from you!

    Anonymous, you sound like most people.. so don't be so hard on yourself... Start small and choose an exercise that you like. Then make it a habit.. that's the key. once it becomes routine then you'll miss it when you skip it. And it must be hard when you're not the one buying food for the family. Maybe you could talk everyone into joining you on eating right!?

  27. Ugh that's part of my problem, too. If you only have healthy food around, of course you're going to eat healthy food. But even if YOU don't want junk food, if others in your house are buying it, it's there, and you end up eating it :( Plus, between halloween and Christmas, everybody's giving and getting candy! It's a conspiracy, I think ;)

  28. Mary Lu,

    I would love to join you on your journey. As a matter of fact, I began one of my own a few months ago and have lost 7 pounds, which is nothing compared to my friend who has lost 50 over the past year. I have been counting calories and entering my exercise on and it has been a great success! I found that I overeat when I don't count them. Let me know if you join then I can friend is an online community of encouragement. Mine is just set for people I know; I would love to include you in my list. Blessings and good luck!

  29. Seven pounds is nothing to laugh at, Angel!! Good job. I actually already use another online site called I can enter my food intake and calories there as well. I agree, it's a great way to keep track of what you're eating.. otherwise, you aren't aware of what you're putting in your mouth.
    I would consider joining but believe me, the last thing I need is another community to join! I belong to far too many now that I can't keep up. But I appreciate the offer. I'm hoping to post my progress here on my blog now and then.. maybe every Friday. So, please join us here in celebrating your success!!

  30. Archery IS SO MUCH FUN. :) But its also a lot of work too. There's always the chance that you might send an arrow flying on a bizarre trail (I know I have at least once-at least I didn't hit anybody lol). I took archery as a class at my local community college. There was only three (including me)girls in the whole class of twenty. They called us the Xena warriors because we were really good at hitting the target. I would retake the class if I could!

  31. LOSE IT is a great tool. I've been successful with it in the past and I use it on my Ipod. It's great for people who are obsessive. Rather than obsessive eating, I can do obsessive calorie counting!

    I'm starting today with a week of my standard healthy eating diet just to get back in the groove and then next week WEIGH myself and get back to my LOSE IT app. to really be accountable, you can friend people on LOSE and they can cheer or jeer as needed.
    They can see just how how much you weigh and how strange your food choices are. It's rather frightening yet it does the trick!

  32. Eszter, the Xena warrior, I love it!
    Debra.. so we are LOSEIT buddies! That's cool. Although I think I'll remain isolated.. I don't exactly want people to know when I've messed up! LOL. But it's a great tool as you said for us obsessive types.. :-)