Often times the pain associated with Fibromyalgia is the most debilitating symptom we have to deal with. Giving in to that pain just makes it worse and in turn causes us to lock ourselves away from the outside world. This keeps us from having the daily interactions with family and friends who are so much a major part of our support team. In the beginning, I was more than happy to crawl into my bed and pull the blankets up over my head. But, it broke my heart every time the Witchling would come to check on me, asking, Abi, are you OK? After a few of these episodes, I decided I'd had enough hiding and running away from my issues.
Simple and minimal exercise is important. By moving about and working those muscles, the chance for feeling better increases and you/I find I want to do more even if it is only walking to the mailbox and back each day. In order to work through some of the pain and muscle cramping, I began to do some simple stretching and then worked my way into some of the routines one learns in Hatha Yoga.
Hatha Yoga is the gentler of the exercises and many studios offer a restructured platform for those who are dealing with Fibro. Unfortunately for me, the only Yoga studio in my close or immediate area does not offer this type of class, (no, I didn't feel comfortable driving more than 30 minutes to get to a class that was held at 8pm) so I went online, did a bunch of research and then put together my own interpretation of Hatha Yoga for my symptoms. I know, these probably aren't the ideal or "official" exercises, but they do work for me and I've managed to achieve a better range of motion AND have regained the ability to walk up the front deck steps without single stepping my way to the top.
This site is the one I bookmarked and from there I've been able to find a huge amount of information on Yoga and Fibro. And this site has a slide show of steps/stretches/information for exercises you can do to help decrease/overcome the pain we live with on a daily basis. You can also find videos on YouTube and I've used this one on a regular basis.
I am not a doctor, nor do I assume I can prescribe treatment for anyone, I am simply giving you the information that has worked for me. I cannot stress enough, do not begin any of these exercise programs without first talking to your doctor if you have one, and if you aren't under doctor's care, go slowly and stop if you have any new or unexplained pain.
And make sure you stay hydrated, drink gallons of water! Seriously, I used to hate and refuse to drink water. But I've found staying hydrated also helps with pain management. Who'd A Thunk it??
Now, this weeks gluten free recipe is one I recently found but haven't tried yet. It is on the list for this weekend ...
This is on my Pinterest under Gluten-Free Recipes, you can also find it here
Being from Arizona and raised on Mexican food, I thought I would have to give up all my favorites when I decided to remove gluten from my diet. Imagine my excitement when I found most (not all) my favorite recipes are actually gluten free. A few of them are going to need to be tweaked to make sure there is no gluten in any of the sauces or seasonings, but for the most part, I can eat all the Mexican food I want. I've even found a recipe for gluten-free flour tortillas I'm itching to try. At any rate, here is what I'm making on Saturday:
CHICKEN ENCHILADA CASSEROLE (A.K.A. "STACKED" CHICKEN ENCHILADAS)
This chicken enchilada casserole recipe (a.k.a. "stacked enchiladas") are simple to make, gluten-free, and MUY delicioso.
- 3 cups red enchilada sauce (I highly recommend my homemade red enchilada sauce recipe, which can be made gluten-free*)
- 16 corn tortillas, halved
- 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
- 6 scallions (green onions), thinly sliced
- 4 cups (about 1.5 pounds) shredded cooked chicken
- 3 cups shredded Monterrey Jack or Mexican blend cheese
- 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced
- 1/2 cup loosely-packed chopped fresh cilantro
Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Pour about 3/4 cup enchilada sauce in the baking dish, and spread until the bottom of the dish is coated. Top with a layer of about 8 tortilla halves so that the entire dish is covered. Sprinkle evenly with about 1 cup black beans, 1/2 cup corn and a fourth of the green onions. Then sprinkle with a heaping cup of the chicken, and about 3/4 cup shredded cheese. Repeat with a second layer of tortillas, then sauce, then beans, corn, green onions, chicken, and cheese. Then a final layer of tortillas, sauce, beans, corn, green onions, chicken and cheese. Then conclude with a final layer of tortillas and sauce (reserving about 3/4 cup of cheese to add partway through baking). Cover the pan with aluminum foil, then bake for 20 minutes.
Remove pan and remove aluminum foil. Sprinkle the top of the enchiladas evenly with the remaining 3/4 cup of cheese, then return to the oven (uncovered) and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Remove pan, and sprinkle with avocado, cilantro, and remaining green onions. Serve warm.
*If you are not using my enchilada sauce and would like this recipe to be gluten-free, be sure to check the label of store-bought sauces to find one that is GF.
*To make this recipe gluten-free, be sure to check the labels of all ingredients to double-check that they are made gluten-free.
Well, that's all for this week. Here's to a wonderful week ahead and my hope for you to keep on keeping on.