On A Personal Note: Diet, Weight Loss, M.S., And More…

Happy Monday, all!  Well, is it safe to show my face around here now after my little prank last Monday:-D

To clarify, yes it was a joke.  I’m not going anywhere, at least not for the foreseeable future.  I have way too many exciting projects coming up that I’ll want to share with y’all!!  There’s no way I could just walk away now.

The funny thing is that when I was writing that post, I honestly thought to myself, “Kristi, no one is going to believe this!  They’re going to see the title and say, “Oh right.  Nice try, Kristi!””  I swear to you, I thought everyone would see right through it since we’re (hopefully) going to be moving to a house in the near future, and I’ll have so much to share with you.

But I knew I was in trouble when my own mom called me shortly after I published my post, saying that I had given her quite a scare.  :)  So I promise…no more joking around about closing down the blog.  If I ever say that again, it’ll be for real.

Moving on…

I’m finally going to start sharing my living room makeover with you starting tomorrow.  I finally have vision for it!  I have a plan.  And I’m so darn excited about it.  I’ll be doing some cabinet/bookshelf building.  It’ll be my practice run so that I can be ready to go when we get into the house.

But today, I want to share a personal update…

If you’ve been following my blog for a year or so, then you know that last year, Matt and I changed our diet completely.  Matt has multiple sclerosis and has been in a wheelchair for 3.5 years.  In 2011, we had both hit rock bottom.  We were on a steady fast food diet, both gaining weight, and basically drowning our sorrows in Dr. Pepper and junk food.

So on January 1, 2012, we decided that enough was enough.  Overnight, we made a radical change in our diet.  Out with the junk, in with the living, natural, health-giving foods.  We gave up soda completely (still haven’t had any!!!), and we decided to go a year without eating out at all.  We made it nine months, which was still quite miraculous for us, and even then we didn’t eat fast food.  If we chose to eat out, we would eat at a little locally-owned Mediterranean restaurant, so the food was quality.

We had an amazing year.  I lost 50 pounds, Matt lost a lot of weight as well, and we saw a drastic improvement in Matt’s health.

But still, he was in that darned wheelchair.

Fast forward to 2013…

I’d love to be able to tell you that we’ve continued our healthy lifestyle right through to the present.

We haven’t.

After our victorious year in 2012, we kind of let ourselves “celebrate” at the beginning of January with some not-so-healthy foods.  Then the first week of January became the whole month of January.  Then January became February, and February became March.

You get the picture.  Here we are today, having fallen back into some old habits.  It hasn’t been like 2011, where we were eating three fast-food meals per day, but any fast food (or actually, any restaurant food at all) isn’t healthy, especially for someone dealing with compromised health in the first place.

It’s just so easy to do!  I get so busy — there’s my blog, and my website design business, and I’m trying to finish up the condo to get it ready for sale — that adding “prepare three meals a day” to that list just gets to be too much for me, especially when I have absolutely no help with any of it.  And we live right here by a university campus, surrounded by every fast food restaurant you could imagine.

So this weekend, we found ourselves in a similar place to where we were in December 2011 (well, with the exception of hitting rock bottom emotionally).  But we had to make a decision that enough is enough!!  As of today, we’re back on track.  Our fridge is stocked with fresh fruits and veggies, and I’m determined to make time for our health.  It’s worth it!!

And yet, we’ve seen improvement…

Even though we’ve gotten off track this year, we’ve still seen amazing improvements in Matt’s health.  (We have still been eating fruits and veggies and good stuff…just with the junk mixed in.)

Yesterday was the most exciting day so far.  Matt has been in a wheelchair for 3.5 years now.  He hasn’t been able to walk, or even stand on his own.  He often needs help transferring from his wheelchair to the bed at the end of the day, and even on the days that he can do it himself, he uses mostly arm strength to push himself up, and then kind of falls onto the bed.  So it’s not like he’s standing at all.

But a few weeks ago, he bought a walker (the kind that you see elderly people using, often with tennis balls attached to the front legs so that it’ll scoot easily across the floor).  And every morning, he uses the walker to stand.  Every morning, I’ve had to help him by lifting with considerable force, and then holding him in place once he’s in a standing position.  And he generally does it twice and then that’s all he can do.

This last Saturday as we did this exercise, we both noticed that he was using way more of his own strength to get to the standing position than normal.  He felt certain that he could have done it without any help from me at all.

So yesterday morning, he told me to keep my hands to myself.  :)  And he did it!!!

He stood not once, but FOUR TIMES, all by himself!!!!

It’s so exciting, and such an unbelievable improvement from where he was in 2011 when he was bedridden.  Yes, the change is happening slowly, but it’s happening, and that’s all that matters.

Needless to say, yesterday morning was really the turning point when we decided it was time to get serious about our health again.  I mean, if he’s seen this improvement with the added junk in his diet, we can just imagine what will happen once we remove that junk and replace it with healthy, life-giving foods!!

These are exciting times around the Linauer household.  :)  Thanks so much for letting me share!

Back to decorating tomorrow…I promise.  :)  I finally have a plan for my living room.

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Comments

  1. Norma from Norma's Kentiques says

    I’ve been following along, and this thrills be to hear this news! I’ve been praying and will continue to do so. That:
    Y’all will continue to be motivated to stay on course to eat right (I know it’s hard, I’m there too)
    That as Matt continues to test his limits, that they will no longer be limit but stepping stones to the next level, and the next, and the next.
    That due to Matt standing on his own, each and every time is muscles with gain strength to do even more.

    God bless you both!

  2. says

    Kristi, that is so amazing and inspiring. I bet that was an amazing moment for you and Matt and no wonder you’ve renewed your commitment to healthy eating and living. So happy for you both and feeling a little inspired myself.

  3. brehaut says

    I switched my eating habits in 2011 and lost close to 120 lbs with clean healthy eating and exercise. Even managed to quit smoking during that time. Felt so amazing!!! During the later part of 2012 to present, I returned to my old habits and gained back half of the weight. Decided over the weekend, that I had enough and today was going to be a new beginning. Your story has aspired me. Prayers that Matt’s health continues to improve. Thanks for sharing. We can do this!!!!!

  4. Charity says

    Good for you!!! I am in a similar position, husband in a wheelchair, add to your to do list twin toddlers and a 20 yo son who can’t find a job & you have my life. I feel your pain about how hard healthy living is when juggling so many other things. I have ultimate respect for you. Keep it up!

  5. Carla says

    That’s great news! I’m sure you know this, and probably already do it, but a crockpot is a busy woman’s best friend! There are lots of healthy recipes out there and you don’t have to hover over a stove for hours. I’m a single mom with a pretty hefty commute and I use mine a lot.

    Can’t wait to for you to get started on the living room! I suffer from the ailment you described in an earlier post – Lack of Motivation to Clean. So I greatly benefit from watching the progress of your rooms and absorbing your motivational vibes! Love your blog!!!

  6. says

    That is awesome!!!! So exciting for you guys!! I know how hard it is to keep up with the super healthy eating, especially when stress is involved. My brother lost 50 pounds last year with the “Clean” diet by Alexander Junger…it’s the juice diet. But better than losing weight is all the health benefits since it’s such a great way to get max amount of veg/fruit nutrients into your system. I’m going to try the cleanse in May with my husband–we both need to lose weight. I’m also going to blog about our progress so hopefully we can stick to it!

  7. Jamie says

    How wonderful!!!! Time to celebrate with these healthy brownies! :) http://thehealthyfamilyandhome.com/vegan-flourless-zucchini-brownies/
    I totally know how you feel about the 3 meal- a- day thing! let me share with you what has been working for me! we eat the same breakfast and lunch everyday (breakfast: eggs, homemade hashbrowns, oatmeal with honey, and a fruit shake (frozen strawberries, frozen banana and grape juice); lunch: brown rice and black beans in a wheat tortilla with fresh veggies). and for dinner we chose 7 recipes that are healthy and we love and we make those same ones every week.
    Now there is no issue of “what’s for dinner??” and we know they are healthy options. and way easy! Especially when I make a big batch of rice and beans for the whole week’s lunches at once!
    Hang in there and keep on that lifestyle change!! :)

  8. Loretta says

    Congratulations to taking charge once again! You may want to try going gluten-free for a month to see if that makes any difference with Matt. I have read it can be helpful.

    • says

      Gluten does such horrible things to my body. Gluten even makes my muscles weak and nonresponsive. I agree that we should and will go gluten free.

  9. says

    Great accomplishments! Just wondering if you have a Vitamix for juicing healthy things? I’m guessing you could make-it-yourself with some of your power tools. ;)

  10. Christine says

    Praying for you two. I know its hard, for me it seems to go back and forth also. I can’t get my husband to go along with me, it would be a lot easier. That’s wonderful about Matt! Tell him to keep up the good work!

  11. Peggy says

    Great news! Congrats to both you and Matt. Unfortunately junk food is convenient food, unless you plan ahead…..my biggest challenge. Sounds like you know what works for you…..I hope you know you have a HUGE fan club cheering you on! Praying for continued strength for Matt and the time you need to make those meal plans and shop for healthy food. Blessings!

  12. Marie Claire says

    So very happy for both of you. Great news, indeed! Really looking forward to tomorrow’s post. I need some inspiration.

    Marie Claire

  13. says

    This is awesome news, Kristi! It’s amazing what the right (or wrong) foods will do for (or against) us. I gave up gluten about 1 1/2 years ago and I have no more fibromyalgia symptoms, and it has greatly reduced the number of migraine episodes. If I eat gluten now, I feel like I have the flu for a week and get a terrible migraine. Pain is a great motivator! Now, if I could only give up the sugar!

  14. says

    Somehow I missed your April Fool’ Day prank, and I am so glad I did! You are one of my all-time favorite blogs, and I would have been SO SAD to see you go, so I’m happy it was just a big joke (you little stinker!).

    I swear, junk food and sodas are addicting, we all know they have really bad, health-damaging ingredients in them, and I’m a firm believer that those ingredients, especially stuff like HFCS (which is in EVERTYHING) are very addicting. I think getting off sugar must be like trying to get off heroin or something, it’s very hard to do. Sounds like you guys did an amazing job turning things around as far as eating healthfully but backslid a little, which if you know anything about folks dealing with addictions, backsliding is not at all uncommon. So you caught it before it got too bad, which is a GOOD thing, now you know to turn it back around full bore. It can only be helpful to both of you, especially Matt.

    Some folks with MS are on a relapse/remit cycle where their symptoms improve for a while. Sounds like that might be what is happening with Matt and it’s a good idea to let him do as much as he can to build his muscles while he is feeling strong. The healthful eating is a major plus in his corner to help with his condition. He must have been so thrilled with the improvement in his strength! I’m rooting for both of you!

  15. says

    Hi – I’m so happy for you guys. What a great up-lift for you both and you passed it on to me too.
    My father had MS many years ago and they have come a long way with it. So you sharing this progress just lifted my heart. Thank you. All my best…
    Irene

  16. Laura says

    Kristi, We too have been transforming our lives through diet. I am trying to get myself on a juice fast and get off of anything with gluten. So hard to do even with what I know it does to me. Have you tried cutting the gluten? I thought I read somewhere some folks with MS have had good results. Keep up the good work!

  17. Winnie says

    I’m so happy for both you and Matt ! LOVE your blog – I never miss it. Looking forward to your next project AND watching what you do when you get your new home.

  18. says

    I am so happy that you are seeing those results. Proud too. Praise God and pass the veggies! Keep it up girl, and thanks for being real and honest–someone we can relate to. Blessings and healing.

  19. says

    I give you so much credit for realizing the power and magic of food. I’m a long-time proponent of a healthful diet of whole foods, and have taught classes is natural foods cooking for years. You can do this, as you’ve already learned. As with any diet, you can give yourself permission to have some flings off the diet, because if you are too strict with yourselves, you could walk away again. Best wishes to you both.

  20. carol says

    Hi to you and Matt….wonderful to see this great improvement. Now that things are ‘back on track’ once again….more progress is going to be happening!! Your post was an inspiration to read!! You guys rock!! <3

  21. MollyK. says

    Hi, Kristi….I totally believed you were giving up your blog and I was so disappointed! But now I know you’re continuing, I’m much happier!

    MS, Fibromyalgia, CFS, etc. are such elusive conditions to treat…..my personal journey is marred by inherited Fibromyalgia and fatigue…..so I am partially trying gluten-free foods, but have never stuck to it entirely. I did attend “cooking” classes on eating a Raw Diet (which includes foods heated to 120 degrees) and the chef had improved her severe brain trauma from 5 years before by eating a raw diet; she said she noticed abilities just clicking in over time and her latest was regaining the ability to multi-task. I was surprised how good many of her recipes are and I know she was trying a video adaptation of her raw food classes. That must be eating healthy taken to a higher level and I’m beginning to think I should pursue that even more!

  22. Lance R says

    I don’t know you guys, but I hate M.S. and this blog just brought tears to my eyes. So happy for you guys!

  23. Debbie from NC says

    I just want to say Amen and Praise the Lord..that is great news..Let us know how your diet is going..How about posting your menu..that would be great. Love your blog.

  24. Tammy says

    I am new to your blog and I am loving it. Yes, you did give me a scare! I am also excited to hear about your new lease on life to “get healthy!” I want to mention something someone had shared with me….I was experiencing restless leg syndrome and a dear friend shared with me about the “diet” sugars and drinks I been partaking of thinking it would be better for me. Once I stopped the diet drinks/and replacement sugars…I was better. The other day someone sent an article to me on how research is now showing “the diet sugars” is linked to so many other problems…MS was on the list. Just wanted to share that with you! Best of luck and can’t wait to see the new projects.

  25. says

    So happy for you both. Love your blog and look forward to each day’s post. Will continue to pray for Matt’s continued improvement. Look forward to seeing what you do to the living room.

  26. Bridget says

    Your story gave me goose-bumps. What an amazing accomplishment for you and your husband. I can so relate to your eating habits and such. I too was eating not only fast food for nearly almost every meal but tons of junk food in between. I have a really high metabolism so I only needed to lose about 26 pounds and did it. Then I put it all back on plus 6. I too last week decided to get back on track and lose the 32 lbs. We can all do it, it just takes discipline. WIth your husbands health getting better; keep it up. I hope to hear amazing updates on your weight loss and his walking!

  27. says

    Congratulations on such a huge accomplishment for you both. You really stuck to it and that is amazing to me. I’m so happy for you and your guy. Your story is certainly inspirational.

  28. says

    You have a great attitude…you didn’t give up on the healthy eating. I’m glad to hear your husband is so determined. You scared me when you said you were giving up your blog. I didn’t know until today that it was just a joke. I wondered where I was going to find such DIY inspiration that you offer. Can’t wait to see what you are up to with your living room.

  29. Brigitte Mermoud says

    So pleased to read your strory and happy for Matt ! Hope the best for both of you !
    Love from Brigitte (french girl from New Caledonia – South Pacific)

  30. LisaT says

    That all is sooo great! Our family recently did a strict 30 days of paleo with no dairy or sweetener of any kind besides the regular paleo regimen. We were amazed at some of the improvements we saw in just 30 days! Diet does matter! Way to go, guys!

  31. julie says

    What an uplifting post. I seriously got chills while reading it. Thank you so much for sharing. So happy you’re back on track. You guys CAN DO IT!!!!!

  32. DEBRA says

    Just started following your blog and love it!

    There is a great FREE site for those (me included) who fall off the wagon with eating healthy and trying to lose weight. Alot of great inspiration stories much like yours! Check it out and I will be following you .

    MyFitnessPal.com

  33. says

    Kristi, I’m so pleased to hear that Matt’s condition is so much improved — even with dietary backsliding! We all know that it’s a lot of effort to change our eating habits, so congratulations to you both!

  34. Maggie says

    I was diagnosed with pre diabetes last year and have learned to eat healthy. One of my tricks is to eat a lot of low carb yogurt shakes with fresh fruit and ground ice, for my sweet tooth. Oatmeal bake,(recipe online),makes 12 servings and I freeze and eat on for a week. Clean and chop my salad vegetables and white meat chicken breast and and throw together as a salad. Make up a batch of fresh fruit into a fruit salad and have no salt nuts around for snacks. I also keep hard boiled eggs handy. I do make mini meals like turkey loaf etc, in muffin tins and freeze to use a needed. Usually one of these with a salad is a meal also.Fish is a staple and use fresh salsa as a sauce for meat and for snacking. It takes me maybe an hour a week of chopping and putting in containers with labels and cooking. I can do it if I organize and have all of the ingredients ready. Eating has become a no brainer for me since I got some organization in my life.
    I wish you both the best ,hope some of these tips help with health and time. You are very inventive and I know you will find the way that is right for you both.
    I love the blog.

  35. says

    Kristi I’m soo happy that you shared where you are in your journey and the exciting news about Matt just makes me grin. God is good. And it is amazing what a change of diet can do. I remember reading some time ago that we should treat our food as medicine. The right food really does help our bodies heal themselves. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before or if you are aware…but I have really gained a lot of info from “The Healthy Home Economist.” She has a website and FB page. You might want to check it out.
    I’m looking forward to seeing your vision for your living room fleshed out.
    Blessings!

  36. Susan Kirby says

    You, my dear, have inspired me! Thank you! (and no more little jokes!)
    May God bless your efforts and enrich your lives as you have blessed so many others.

  37. charmaine says

    Congratulations on making the decision to make healthy changes. Change is scary especially when you may associate certain behavior with your relationship. You are making positive changes, even if they come slowly or if you slip back and have to get started again. Either way, you two are working together towards something very worthwhile. I envy that and am inspired.

  38. Elizabeth says

    That is so wonderful for your husband! It’s so amazing to hear how many people improve their health,simply by changing the food they eat.

  39. Jen says

    Congratulation for your husband! I am rejoicing, with tears streaming down my face! That’s exciting news, thank you for sharing something so personal!!

  40. Gabriela says

    BRAVO, people!! Keep on with the good work, you’re doing great following the healthy food path! Your story reminded me of this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX9FSZJu448.

    I cured and saw cured so.. much and many with raw vegan foods – among which my arthritis (in early 30’s!) and my mom’s diabetes – it’a amazing! Key-word (to always keep in mind): NUTRIENTS – that’s all it comes down to. It’s incredible what this amazing body we’re gifted with, can do for us when provided properly…

  41. Sue says

    I was thrilled to read how much progress Matt made on this diet and shown with the use of the walker. Amazing! I’m happy for both of you and hope that you’ve found the diet plan that works for both of you. Keep it up! Praying for you.

  42. says

    Prayers to you and yours, Kristi. Sounds like you guys have a positive attitude and that’s one of the most important things in life.

  43. Carol T says

    Your post made me feel so up lifting. I am happy for both of you!! My prayers are with both of you. That each day he has improvement.

  44. Janet says

    That is wonderful news. Thank you for sharing!

    Have you read Dr. Wahls’ “Minding My Mitochondria”? It tells her story of how she ‘cured’ herself of M.S. by nourishing her brains cells. She’s a physician in the mid-west (maybe Iowa). I have been following her low-carb diet and just feel better. If you need help with menu planning, check out SavingDinner.com for great ideas. Leanne sells menu planners – a grocery list plus recipes – which make it easier and cheaper to eat.

  45. Deb Cazzetta says

    I have read your blog for over a year and did not realize your husband has MS. I think it is great that he was able to get up on his own. I am so happy for him!!Your accomplishment of no eating our and eating healthy is a BIG one!!!! With all you have on your plate, I know it is difficult, especially when your so sired at the end of the day & know you are going to be going back at

  46. Heather says

    Oh, wow! How wonderful to read your awesome news. Congrats to Matt! I hope to be reading in your blog (hopefully, sooner rather than later) about Matt helping you with your wonderful projects. Keep us all posted with your health efforts and progress! :)

  47. Jennifer says

    Kristi,
    I did not know your husband has M.S., I too have M.S.
    How inspiring and what a testimony to God hearing about the progress Matt is making, that is so awesome!
    I recently gave up soft drinks too, the last Sunday in January was my first day with out a Coke. Between giving up all that sugar, counting calories and riding the exercise bike I have managed to shed 18 pounds thus far.
    Keep up the good work, it is so very hard, and is so tempting sometimes to swing through and pick ‘something’ up for dinner; I’ve gotten where I hate the idea of eating out because everything is so high in calories and salt.
    You can do this, y’all can do this, we can do this … can’t wait to see more progress from Matt and hear more about your new, incredible diet, and you!
    God bless

  48. Fatima says

    I’ve sent you a private email with some information….sugar is bad, try Agave syrup instead. Anything genetically modified isn’t good-corn is the worst and many gluten free items have corn. I’m following Suzanne somers plan. It’s not a diet per se, but it’s helped me learn how to eat healthy with proper portion sizes and my expensive gluten free bread (frozen) lasts 4 months-I no longer like my old faves…taste buds have changed…I’ve dropped 26 pounds since Dec…honestly, I eat more now than before I went healthy..it’s worth looking at.

  49. says

    Hi Kristi. I’ve been following the journey of you and Matt for quite a long time and I couldn’t be happier for the both of you! I can only imagine how excited the two of you must be. Thank you so much for sharing with all of us.

  50. sandi says

    Wow. Excellent news. Someone in my family was in a major auto accident and went from rehab(the bed) to a wheel chair and to a walker. Now he is walking with a cane. What helped him was doing physical therapy exercises. This happened within the span of 7 months. He is about 82 years old.

    That said: I feel so optimistic about your hubby. He will do fine. So happy for you both. Just keep on going. Pineapples are really good for muscles.

    Also, Dr. Blaylock writes a lot about the chemicals in food which negatively affect those with MS and related conditions: Here is a link. I’m not an affiliate. But I read this book when I was having facial spasms and it helped me so much. Book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Excitotoxins-The-Taste-That-Kills/dp/0929173252

    Her is more about Dr. Blaylock: http://www.russellblaylockmd.com/

  51. says

    Hi Kristi and Matt!!! Wow!! Your news is amazing!! I’m sure lot’s of people have recommended resources for you, but I wanted to share a book that helped me survive a risky pregnancy my cardiologist warned me to avoid: “Trim Healthy Mama….now before you think that it’s just for moms….it’s not…it’s for anyone who needs to eat low glycemic, zero gluten, and very yummy and healthy…with tons of easy recipes and scrumptious deserts. You can find it on amazon…I don’t have any kind of affliation with the authors, the lifestyle just works for me and there are awesome sections on Men’s health as well. God bless you both, you are an inspiration to many!!

  52. says

    Kristi, I am a newbie here just getting to know you and follow along. This was truly amazing to read. I am so happy for Matt and you. I will add the two of you to my prayers and hope and pray for a complete reversal. I pray you will both continue to have the strength and determination to continue eating healthy. Praise the Lord for both small and big miracles!
    Ginger

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