Life Lately – Concussion Edition

Hey there! Thanks to everyone for all of the well wishes after my last blurb on here — I really couldn’t tolerate the screen for several days but I appreciate each and every one of your comments! I am feeling much better now — it’s really just the headache that plagues me at this point. I’m at a point where I can tolerate screen time up to a point. Too much and my headache goes through the roof, but on-and-off during the work day and for short intervals at home, I’m golden. 🙂  For the first few days after I got hit, I was extremely nauseous and mentally foggy — I stood over the stove one day and couldn’t figure out how to make oatmeal. Brain injury, anyone? Luckily  my brain is back on track and I can now again make oatmeal with my eyes closed. Which, I don’t really want to do because that might get a bit messy, but my brain is clear as a bell.

So, headache be damned, life will go on.

Training Lately

Well, this is one area that I don’t feel great about. Because I spent most of my summer running, I had started slowly back in the weight room in August. Before last week, I was just starting to feel like I was starting to hit my stride again with dead lifts, and then I had this set back. I’m not back to heavy lifting yet, but I know what to do when I’m ready and I know it’s not the end of the world that I’ve been off for a week and a half. I’ll ease back into it again, just a little bit behind where I planned to be. I took all of last week completely off of exercise, as I was still symptomatic and really just needed rest and healing time for my brain. It used to be a rule that you couldn’t start exercising until concussion symptoms had been gone for at least 24 hours, but there is newer research out there suggesting that light exercise once symptoms have significantly decreased may be beneficial to healing time.

So, on Monday, I woke up with a mild headache per usual, but headed out to walk some hills. I walked the big hill near my house five times, which after being pretty sedentary for a week was kind of tough! I also did some light body weight stuff at home, being careful not to push my heart rate and blood pressure to a point where my symptoms increased too much. Each time my headache increased, I just backed off a little bit to bring the BP down. This went well, and I’ll stick with this light exercise plan for the next several days or so or until my symptoms finally go away for good.

I did try some jogging intervals on Tuesday that made my headache and nausea increase with a vengeance, so things will stay easy until I can increase without feeling like complete crap. Regardless, it felt so good to move and to get my heart rate up a little bit — it’s easy to take exercise for granted until you can’t do it anymore. Movement is such a big part of a happy life for me, so even just a little bit of light exercise makes me feel so much better.

Food Lately

You guys, I’m such an idiot. How many times have I written on here about GI issues, food intolerances/sensitivities, etc? I feel like I’ve tried everything under the sun to take control of some nagging GI stuff, but every time I thought I figured it out, symptoms would come back again. I’ve tried gluten free, grain free, dairy free, sugar free, alcohol free — and all of it worked to a certain extent. But I still had days multiple times per week where my belly would bloat to the point of me looking 5 months pregnant by dinner time, and I couldn’t figure out what to do about it. I eliminated foods that I knew bothered me, and still, the bloat. Until the other day, when I finally came to my senses.


Soy kills my stomach. There’s a takeout dish I get from one of my favorite places here in Boston, Life Alive Cafe. Every week, I order the Adventurer Bowl without quinoa, and with tofu. Every week, after eating it my stomach has ballooned up within a few hours. I couldn’t figure out why, because the bowl consists of veggies, greens, nuts, brown rice and a little bit of cheese. So what the heck was going on — was it too much fiber? (I know, I know, why would I keep ordering it? It’s simply that good.) But the problem happened with my stomach on days when Life Alive wasn’t in the picture, so I couldn’t figure it out. And then it hit me.


I started reading labels of things in our pantry, and surprise surprise, found soy in a few things. Not necessarily things that I eat every day, but things that will make their way into my diet a couple times per week. A bar here, some cereal in my yogurt there, soy soy soy. So I made a concerted effort to avoid all soy products (including the tofu in my Life Alive bowls) and surprise surprise, I haven’t had any issues since! This has been a good three weeks now, and my gut health is going strong. Such a scientific study, I know.

Soy. It’s the devil in disguise (at least when it comes to me that is).

Too much screen time still increases my headache/nausea at this point, so that’s all for today. Do any of you have food intolerances that took you forever to figure out? Have you ever had a concussion? How long did it take you to return to full exercise?

Ooh, also, I now have my wedding pictures from my photographer. Anyone interested in a picture-filled wedding recap… two months after the fact? 🙂

7 thoughts on “Life Lately – Concussion Edition

  1. Steph, how did you come to be concussed?

    1. Hellooo Kamil! I was hit in the face with a volleyball during warmups for a match I was covering. Turned away for one second and BAM. It’s ok, you can laugh, it probably looked pretty funny 🙂

  2. Ouch and yep. Concussion can take ages to heal. Wishing you healing thoughts
    Interesting about soy – I used to have GI distress which was finally tracked down to my gal bladder but after that’s been sorted out there’s still a couple foods that hurt like hell. Onions & tomatoes. The interesting huge intolerance was Quorn. Queezy and headaches galore with quorn. Go figure!

    1. Interesting!! I have found that if I eat too much in the way of tomato based foods, I get horrible indigestion, but it has to be like something in a tomato sauce every day for lunch for a week.

  3. That must be a relief to have figured out your GI issues! My sister can’t tolerate soy either and just figured it out a year or so ago. So whenever I cook for her I have to be careful… it’s crazy how many foods have hidden soy in them!

    1. It is insane how many foods have soy in them! I have been consciously eliminating it, but I wonder if it is there in trace amounts in certain foods if I would have any issues with it. It may have just been too much in my system with the weekly tofu and certain bars and stuff. I just think it’s so silly that it took me so long to figure this out!

  4. So happy you figured out your problem!! There’s nothing worse than not knowing. I’m a huge fan of Life Alive… and now I’m craving it 🙂

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