They say that people who don’t lose weight are making excuses.  And I think they are.  But I also think that excuses can be valid reasons for struggles with weight.  My proposed snarky twitter comment this week was, “Want to know why people post their workouts on Facebook?  Because its so hard to get to the gym!”.  Maybe you don’t care.  But that person posting it, cares.  Between working 3 part-time jobs, finishing my 2nd masters degree, maintaining a household, and taking care of two teenage boy exchange students, I’m exhausted.

Being tired.  That’s an excuse.  Yes it certainly is.

Eating healthy is expensive.  We took the exchange students out to dinner last week, it was $80.  Know what doesn’t cost $80?  Taco bell, Primo’s Pizza, and American Chinese takeout.  I read a statistic that said it costs the average eater $1.50 more per day to eat healthy.   Our exchange students aren’t average eaters, and eat double what we do.  So that makes it around $9 a day- with seven days in a week thats $63 or $252 a month.

Cost- That’s an excuse.

I actively decided that in 2014 I’m choosing my self. I’m going to do things that I want to do. I’ve made myself a priority.  I’m going to finish rewriting my novels.  I’m going to Europe.  I’m going to reduce my responsibilities.

Part of this process for me is losing weight.  Of which, I’ve been doing a pretty lousy job this year.  I do fine for a week, then stress eat the pounds back on.  Plus, our Asian exchange students won’t touch brown rice.  Instead we eat pounds of white rice every week.

Not making myself a separate meal?  That’s another excuse.

For years I’ve complained of what I have deemed “funky food allergies”.  Every doctor I’ve talked to has treated me as if I’m crazy.  “You can’t be allergic to cilantro.”  “You just aren’t used to eating those foods, eat them more you will get used to it.”  But I never do.  My stomach aches.  It hurts so bad I want to make myself throw up.  So if a food makes me sick- I don’t eat it.  The partial list of foods, figured out through an elimination diet, include; apples, pears, banana’s, avocados, cilantro, and eggs.

What doesn’t make me sick?  Bread.  Cheese.  Yogurt.  So I’ve stuck with the items that make me feel better.  Apples are dense and high in fiber- therefore they are a filling diet food.  Too bad they bring me to tears.

I don’t eat raw fruit and prefer bread and crackers.  That’s an excuse.

As part of my year of me, I decided its time to tackle my allergies.  I finally made an appointment for allergy testing.  Not the blood draw kind, the let’s prick 100 needles in her back and see what swells up kind.  It’s more accurate and long overdue.  I went on Friday.  I’m allergic to every major category- trees, grass, pollen, molds, and pets.  The only section that didn’t react- food.

I was baffled- how was this not a food allergy?  Thankfully my allergist had a decade long answer waiting for me, Oral Allergy Syndrome.  Turns out about 30 percent of people with pollen allergies suffer from Oral Allergy Syndrome.  While most people experience symptoms that are localized to their mouths, some people experience stomach pain and cramping.  Bingo.  He handed me a list of foods.  Bingo.

According to WebMD, these include:

Ragweed Allergy: “Ragweed, in theory, cross-reacts with bananas and melons, so people with ragweed allergies may react to honeydew, cantaloupe, and watermelons, or tomatoes,” says Warren V. Filley, MD, from the Oklahoma Allergy & Asthma Clinic in Oklahoma City.

Zucchini, sunflower seeds, dandelions (leaves are often used in lettuce mixes), chamomile tea, and echinacea also go on that list.

Birch Pollen Allergy: People with birch pollen allergies may react to kiwi, apples, pears, peaches, kiwi, plums, coriander (the seed of cilantro), fennel, parsley, celery, cherries, carrots, hazelnuts, and almonds.

Yup.  I have oral allergy syndrome.  Over a decade of questions, and countless doctors visits later, I finally have a diagnosis that makes sense.  The good news is peeling the fruits helps- too bad that’s where many of the nutrients are.  Cooking can help too- but that doesn’t always make for a quick and easy snack.  Its interesting that foods that I don’t mind the taste of like cherries, carrots, and celery but have an aversion to and don’t eat made the list too.

The American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology has some great information here.

My allergist also discovered that my lungs have been functioning at around 85% capacity.  That explains my exhaustion.  So now I’m onto daily meds for asthma and allergies.  I started immunotherapy for my allergies and hope to improve my symptoms.  I miss having cats :(.

I injured my knee nearly a year ago now.  I’ve been hesitant to return to the gym because it hurts.

I’m in pain- that’s another excuse.

At the end of the day, I haven’t lost weight because I’m full of excuses.  We all are.  Except, perhaps, instead of badgering someone struggling with weight loss about their ‘excuses’, maybe we could be a little more sensitive.  Excuses are reasons- and its not up to you or I to judge them.  You don’ t live their life.

I am my excuses.  My excuses paint a picture of who I am.

Be prepared- you are about to see a lot of workouts posted on my social media.  I’m taking steps to overcome my excuses, like not serving myself a full serving of rice at dinner and taking the exchange students to the gym with me.  But at the end of the day- be prepared for a whole lot of excuses.  I’m full of them.  And, so is everyone else.

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