Monday, March 7, 2011


I think you all remember back in the day when I was posting about my wellness regime and the wonderful concoction I was drinking for breakfast...I say "was" because I have been SO off the wagon. I have been taking my supplements but could NOT stomach the green drink after chemo. It is not that I have had nausea, because I haven't, but things do not taste the same the first 10 days after treatment and when I get out of the habit it is really hard to get back on track. I am proud to announce the new and improved "while I am on chemo green drink" It is my green drink powder and tart cherry juice (which is very good for you for lots of reasons). Why didn't I try this earlier? I did get my garlic in with my seared spinach though :-) The drink was so much easier to stomach and I am getting all of that green goodness too!

I have read a couple of non-traditional wellness books that I was really excited about, but the problem is that they are so different and contradict each other so much that I was really frustrated. I have been eating well, it is just that I have added some unhealthy things to the mix (if anyone is friends with me on Facebook I am sure you remember some statuses that had to do with Reeces PB Cups and ice cream). It is really hard, especially since the junk is the only thing that tastes normal right after treatment. I am currently "trying" to give up dairy, wheat, processed foods, sugar, and then there is a whole other list of foods that are considered "healthy" by all other normal people that I should be avoiding according to these books... To be fair, even my oncologist said that wheat and dairy really aren't great for anyone. Anyway, I have come to the conclusion that I am going to do my best to eliminate wheat, dairy, and extra sugar, and eat lots of veggies. I am just going to try to be healthy because the reality is that when I was sticking to this plan religiously when I was first diagnosed I felt great!

I have been trying to think of a way to motivate myself to stay on this wellness plan. One idea that I was afraid to follow through on was using my blog readers to hold me accountable! I was going to post what I ate and what I did for exercise...maybe I still will...will you be nice to me? I also thought about doing a behavior chart for myself. As a teacher I did this all of the time for children who had difficulty with self-control or just needed behavior modification. I never thought of doing this for myself but I DO need self-control and behavior modification! Also, it was in a magazine I subscribe to called Whole Living and they said it is very powerful, maybe I will do this too. I was thinking that I can reward myself with a nice blouse or go out for coffee with the girls (don't tell, I am not supposed to drink coffee, no surprise there!)

I wanted to share a couple of things that are truly motivating to me right now that are helping me to get back on track (at least for today). I think about how those sweets taste and if that report is true about sugar feeding cancer, it is so not worth eating it, it is good, but not that good. I will eat it in moderation, but that is not something I am good at right now.

Another very motivating thing is that the YMCA here does a Livestrong Program where cancer patients and survivors have class together twice a week for 12 weeks. I will start in May or August, depending on my surgery schedule. The classes are exercise or art, whatever the class wants to do. I am excited to be connected to local survivors as well. The best part is that we get a free family membership while I am in the program! We joined last week, so I think the fact that I will have childcare so I can work out will be very motivating.

Also, my awesome and inspiring friends started a team for the race for the cure "Al's Rack Pack" isn't that great? It is a 5K, and although I haven't been running I have been exercising a little bit. I am hoping that I can run the entire thing. I can't imagine how motivating that will be. I am going to have a hard time not crying when I see all of my friends and family running/walking with me in the fight against this horrible disease. I am sure that day will motivate me to keep up with the exercise part of things. Exercise just feels so good when you keep up with it. I also think that if I have a great exercise regimen, if I do fall off the wagon occasionally it won't be the end of the world. I do believe that if you are too strict with a plan it is harder to stick too. If you are interested in joining our team or supporting our team, here is the link...

My most important motivator is my husband and children. When something as staggering as aggressive breast cancer comes at you when you are 30, your head is swimming with wondering "why?" I could drive myself crazy wondering what I can do to prevent recurrence, or I can just do what I can do. I know what I can do, and this is just about it. I think picturing their faces and how I want to be here for everything. It is pretty motivating.

If anyone out there wants to join me in striving for wellness, let me know what you are doing! What are your tricks? What are your great wellness resources and recipes. We all have to remember that we are the ones that are responsible for our health and happiness and that today we can make a difference with our choices.


  1. Dear Allison,
    Lexy and Gary really enjoyed seeing Seamus. I love that little guy of yours. He shows so much love to me for being such a little guy.
    Really enjoyed your blog. I thought that an alarm in the kitchen would help me stay out of trouble. Here is the scenario, I walk in the kitchen and reach for the treats and an alarm goes off ( that is as loud as the N.W. fire alarm) I grab a quick cup of green tea and run for my life. That's just a dream of good eating success. Better yet, I go to pick a huge box of peanut butter cups at B.J.'s and someone takes them out of my hand and puts a bunch of grapes and celery or good lettuce in my hands. I think I would end up biting someone that tried that. So,moral of the story:don't take advice from me. Thats not to say someone else won't be able to blog some realistic and successful hints.
    Hey, you have a strong will to get better so I know you will do well. I just shoveled 5ft drifts from my house ect. I wonder if that does any good. I feel like garbage so I wouldn't suggest you do that. A 5k race sounds lots better.(Even if you haven't been running) Don't forget dates with the hubby. John and I are here until Wednesday and will be back Sat. If you and Nate want to go out. I find going out with the hubby is wonderful. I guess there are very healthy restaurants out there. The Circa restaurant in Cazenovia will accommodate wheat free diets. Have a wonderful evening.

  2. Pat- We LOVED having Lexi and Gary over, they are so sweet! I love all of your ideas, an alarm would be great! I have heard Circa is great from so many people, so we will have to try it. Shoveling is such a great work out! I did do fat burning pilates with Em today. It was great and I am feeling it!

  3. Okay...even though I am pregnant and we all know that self control while pregnant is HARD, I am with you. Although my diet may not look like yours, I will keep you accountable. I think it is fine to have a free pass once in a while. Like at birthday parties or going out to eat. But just watch it. Like eat half instead of the whole thing. The other thing is DON'T BUY JUNK! Even when we REALLLLYYYY want junk, if it isn't the house, lets be honest, we don't want to pack the kids up and drive to the store just for junk. You can do it!! HUGS!!!

  4. You are doing so much better than I am! Altho, I've cut sugar way down in my diet, I haven't given up any dairy or wheat. I always tried to eat well. Buying more organic and fresh produce from locals. It's hard. So, my heart goes out to you. You also continue to be an inspiration. How cool to be doing a race for the cure. You have some wonderful friends!
    Keep on going! Eat well, live well, and trust your Great Physician!

  5. Al, I'm with you all the way...You've already inspired me to think more about the food I prepare for myself, eating even more veggies, organic when I can. At the very least, if I'm going to eat junk, I will make sure it's "quality" homemade stuff!! Processed food costs way too much anyway, not to mention the salt and sugar in it. The same goes for so much restaurant food. You & Nate are such great cooks and enjoy cooking together and so much enjoyment form it and involve the kids too. I just saw Graham Kerr on TV, the former "Galloping Gourmet" (one of Nate's favorites)and he used to cook rich, fat laden, food, but changed his ways after his wife had serious heart and other health problems. I'm thinking this could be the subject of your next blog, or the continuation of this blog! Love ya, Jan