Sodium Sleuthing

Today, I am feeling ponderous.

Here’s what’s up:

Yes, I ate more than usual this weekend. But I did stay within my flex points/activity points even with the extra noshing. At the same time, I do think I gained a little — nothing I couldn’t lose again through some long runs this week, but a gain nonetheless. Meanwhile, for the first time in forever, Chelsea and I made cabbage soup and planned on eating it this week for dinner. Our cabbage soup recipe is divine, yes, but it is also profoundly salty. My weight has shot up in the past two days, despite me going for a nearly 7-mile run, having a functioning digestive system and eating within my points. I think sodium and water retention are the culprits — but how can I be sure?

For starters, I need to make sure I’m drinking enough water to both 1) keep my tummy working and 2) flush sodium out of my system. But then, I still need a plan.

I think my plan for tonight will be to make tuna salad or tofu or something for dinner tonight and eat it instead of the cabbage soup, and see if it changes my water retention or if my weight goes down. Maybe a less-salty option will improve this retention situation. It’s not like I care if the gain is just water and if it lingers awhile, but I don’t want to be marching forward into a bad pattern or bad habit and leaving said pattern/habit unexamined. If sodium is going to take this significant of a toll (nearly 3.5 lbs!) on me, it’s probably a sign I should back off the sodium. Of course, this won’t be hard to do. I can simply eat what I’ve been eating all spring long, and when I make the cabbage soup, use less salt and less bullion. Maybe add some oregano or chives to season in an alternate way.

If switching to a lower-sodium dinner doesn’t do the trick, I’ll assume the weight was gained this weekend — as confusing as that would be. As I say to Chelsea every now and again: I really can’t lose sleep over things like this. If running between 18-25 miles a week and eating within my points won’t cause weight loss, what will?

I’m confident the problem will resolve itself; I just think it would be helpful to pinpoint the problem so that it doesn’t become a problem again.

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