Friday, October 28, 2011

Gluten-free Vegan, that's me!

Ever since I had my second child, almost 3 years ago, I have had to deal with eczema that appeared during my pregnancy and has stuck with me to this day.  You know that dry, itchy patches of skin if you scratch too much it pusses and bleeds at times.  Sorry for the details, but it is not fun to deal with, but you learn to live with.

Well, becoming vegan and eliminating the dairy helped relieve some of my eczema, but not completely.  In the past I have been able to hide it pretty well being on my legs, arms, torso, hands, but during the past few weeks it spread to my face.  My first reaction was to freak out as I was starting to look like a teenager with a very bad case of acne, YIKES!  I have used so many products in the past that say it can help get rid of eczema, but nothing has worked for me.  After more researching online, I decided to see if gluten and wheat had anything to do with my flare-ups.  Well, I am proud to say that in just a weeks time of eliminating them from my diet, my eczema that was attacking my face where I felt like I just wanted to pull and itch at it constantly, is very minimal if not gone.  Plus, the horrible patch on the palm of my hand that I have had for the past year is completely gone.  Yeah, I have my hands back to normal.  I sure hope this is the case because I can't believe something like gluten/wheat could be such a culprit on your body and system.

It has been a challenging week finding new items to snack on as i didn't realize how addicted I was to carbohydrates.  I was crazing bread, pizza crust and pretzels.  Plus, going into the grocery store looking for gluten-free products was a huge sticker price shock to me.  I couldn't believe companies are trying to sell gluten-free bread for $8.75 a loaf and it was the smallest loaf of bread I ever saw.  Seriously, that is outrageous!  So my hunt is on to find a cheaper homemade version to make myself along with all new vegan gluten-free foods.  My new culinary venture begins on the gluten-free, vegan path.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Vegan Martial Artist

I have officially done it.  I am now fulfilling one of my dreams on my to do list, I joined a martial arts school to begin my journey to earn a black belt!  My husband and 5 year old son started two years ago and realized if I don't start now, I never will.  Plus, I had two of my girlfriends interested in joining as well, so we made a pact to do it together.  We are fortunate enough to have the owner provide us a class all of our own so we don't have to learn in front of a ton of people watching us, which has helped tremendously.

Although this isn't the actual style of martial arts I dream of learning, for now I will go with the family flow.  My husband and son go to Kicks Unlimited Middleton and it made sense for me to start there as well.  We are learning American style Tae Kwon Do.  I actually started in mid-July and am really loving it.  It is amazing how much you can sweat by just doing slow stances for about 45 minutes.

Someday soon, I plan on learning Wing Chun which was actually invented by a Chinese women.  Wing Chun is simple and direct art making it seem very fast, this makes it suitable for weaker less athletic types to fight well and on many occasions win the fight. Your age or gender is not important; Wing Chun is suitable for mostly everyone. I came to learn about Wing Chun from watching the foreign film, Ip ManIp Man is a semi-biographical movie of Yip Man, the first martial arts master to teach the Chinese martial art of Wing Chun.  Yip Man if famously known as Bruce Lee's martial arts teacher.

What I love about this ongoing achievement is that I am pursuing it as a vegan.  Another proof that by eating vegan and working out won't make you weak and feeble, but stronger and smarter.

L to R: me, Mrs. L and Mrs. J

“If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.”    ~ Bruce Lee