Following a restricted diet like the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) takes patience, dedication, and resilience. It's hard to take a stance and follow a protocol that some people, including doctors, dismiss despite evidence of its success. It's difficult to follow a long-term plan that has slow results when so many short-term fixes exist. It's hard to believe in your body's ability to heal when it has become so broken.
When I decided to follow SCD I was lucky to have the support of my husband and immediate family but it still took a leap of faith that first year. The success I had was due to pushing forward, not letting set-backs get me down, and a willingness to ask for help. The diet worked for me and it continues to work, so I'm sharing my story here in case it inspires someone else to stick to a similar diet, question traditional thinking, or believe in their ability to heal.
,Backbone is a 68 mile trail that spans the Santa Monica Mountains from Will Rogers State Park in Pacific Palisades to Point Mugu near Malibu. Backbone is a stunning trail with a ocean views, tree canopies, dramatic boulders, creeks, and wildlife. It is well-maintained trails with mostly good trail signage (some areas not so much) and a few bathrooms/water fountains along the way. It is accessible from several canyon roads like Topanga, Kanan, and Latigo so an out and back hike can be an excellent option for someone wanting to explore just a few miles at at time.
Over the past few years, I've run and hiked much of the trail in these small bite-sized sections but have had my heart set on traversing the entire trail in a more methodical way. While I'd LOVE to do it all in one shot, a more realistic approach for me is breaking it up into 3-4 sections. That journey started yesterday, November 8, with the first 23 miles from Will Rogers to Piuma Road.
RESEARCH: Setting off on a 23 mile hike that would take a projected 9 hours and involve over 4000 ft of climbing, meant doing some research first. There are multiple resources for learning about this trail system including the National Park Service and the County of LA websites. I personally stopped by the Santa Monica Mountains Anthony C. Beilenson Interagency Visitor Center at King Gillette Ranch to buy the 3 Tom Harrison maps that I have pinned up on my wall, guide books, and to speak to a Park Ranger (as of 11/9 though they are still closed due to the pandemic). There are also multiple online blogs like Hikespeak and AllTrails.
In this post, I'm not going to recount the details of the trails, the views, or the terrain. As you can see above, there are plenty of resources for that and honestly, until you actually get out there, it's all a bit of an enigma. Instead I'm going to focus on what I packed and how I fueled my 9 hour hike following SCD principles - i.e. real food, no grains, no processed sugar.
If you're new to using an Instant Pot, it can feel overwhelming (especially if you're also new a special diet like SCD). There are a bazillion amazing looking recipes online, but if you don't know the basics on how to cook with your IP, they'll likely feel a little out of reach.
When teaching my Intro to the Instant Pot classes, I focus on getting students comfortable with how to use the buttons. Once they've mastered the concepts like pressure, natural vs quick release, and saute, complex recipes seem less daunting.
I've laid out 5 simple and easy, intro to Instant Pot food prep guides (that are also SCD friendly) to help you learn the function of your machine.
With Amazon Prime Day kicking off tomorrow I thought an Instant Pot post was in order. This is the first of many that I'll be posting about Instant Pot cooking because I'm a #1 fan - I've taught classes at my local community center, library, in homes, and on Zoom! I've learned all the cool ways to use it and have even invented some of my own tricks. Keep an eye on my page for tons of info, especially for those who follow SCD or any special diet like KETO, FODMAP, GAPS, or PALEO.
INSTANT POT AS A TIME SAVER
If you are following an elimination diet or if you want to rely less on processed foods, you are well aware how cooking and eating becomes a central life focus! I’ve been following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) for 3 years and even though it is now second nature, much of my day is spent in the kitchen either prepping, cooking, or cleaning up. The other part of my day (or so it feels) is spent at the grocery store and wondering what to cook for dinner!
An amazing tool for the kitchen that can simplify things is the Instant Pot. I love mine - in
About the Gutsy Runner!
Lucie is a runner, hiker, and fitness coach who follows the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) for her ulcerative colitis. She is currently on a year long birthday celebration that includes covering 2021 miles on foot and exploring some of the areas most iconic and beautiful trails. Read more