I absolutely love this time of year; it actually spurs me on to be outside more, and to be more active. I’ve been trying to walk to work more, and let me tell you – I enjoy it much more without the horrid heat of the summer. It’s perfect! Even though I may feel too tired, I find that after a while, the walking actually GIVES you more energy. So if you just take that step and expend a bit of energy, it WILL repay you with more energy. It's a pretty good investment. ;)
I had my first visit to the dietician at the hospital in over a year. Last time I visited her, we discussed things I should change in my routine to help me lose the unwanted poundage (I feel I have about 80 lbs. to loose – the dietician said 60-70 would be more reasonable). Of course, shortly after I met with her, we bought our house and started the big move…and we all know what happens during all that tumult – the diet and what we know to be good for us goes out the proverbial window. Yeah. So it was time to get back on track. I will be visiting her once per month to get weighed and to discuss how I’m doing.
The Canadian Food Guide is the way to go. She said diets or eating plans will usually not work in the long run. You may lose weight faster, but long term, you are less likely to stick with something so rigid and regimented. The Canada Food Guide is reasonable and allots the following:
If you are not physically active, consuming the number of servings from the lower-end of the ranges may be key to maintaining a healthy body weight. If you are physically active (accumulate 30-60 minutes of moderate physical activity daily), you can adjust the number of servings that you eat.
It's all very reasonable. When I was on this before I lost about 1 lb. per week...the dietician said that any more than a 1 lb. loss per week really isn't that good. Slow and steady wins the race. :)
Health. I keep thinking about it and I feel I am slowly starting to regain it. I have been feeling a whole lot better, compared to how I felt when I first arrived back home in Canada.
I haven't weighed myself lately, but considering how my clothes have been fitting a bit looser, I think I've lost a little bit more since last time.
I haven't really been watching what I've been eating too much lately - this is mainly due to the fact that we've been eating out a lot with the in-laws. once all this traveling around and eating on the run is over with, I'm eager to start a more regulated routine.
A couple days ago I started on the pill Metformin (aka Glucophage) -- 500mg, twice a day with a meal -- which my doc suggested I try using to combat my insulin resistance. Many have asked me to explain what insulin resistance is. It's a tricky one so I thought I'd post a short but comprehensive article by an MD on this very topic.
Metformin, sold under the trade name Glucophage, is used to treat diabetes, but several recent papers show that it also helps non-diabetics to lose weight by reducing hunger. You may be overweight because your body makes too much insulin, especially if your store your fat primarily in your belly. When you eat, your blood sugar level rises. The higher it rises, the more insulin your pancreas releases.
Insulin makes you fat by acting on your brain to make you hungry, your liver to manufacture fat, and the fat cells in your belly to fill with fat. So the treatment for this type of obesity is to avoid foods that cause the highest rise in blood sugar and to take medications that prevent your blood sugar levels from rising too high. Avoid bakery products, pastas and all foods made from flour, fruit juices and everything with added sugar. Eat fruits and root vegetables such as potatoes only with meals.
After you eat, sugar goes from your intestines into your bloodstream, and then immediately into your liver. Then your liver releases sugar back into your bloodstream to cause your blood sugar level to rise. To keep blood sugar levels from rising too high, your pancreas release insulin into your bloodstream. Insulin makes you hungry all the time and causes your liver to convert extra calories to fat and it constricts arteries to cause heart attacks. You need insulin to keep blood sugar levels from rising too high to cause diabetes, nerve damage, heart attacks, strokes and kidney damage. Glucophage reduces sugar release from your liver to prevents blood sugar levels from rising too high, so your body doesn't need to produce as much insulin that makes you hungry and causes your liver to make fat.
Glucophage lowers insulin levels, prevents many of the side effects of diabetes and can be used by people who want to lose weight. However, Glucophage is not effective when your blood is acidic from excess lactic acid and recent research shows that exercise, which raises lactic acid, does not cause blood acid levels to rise enough to reduce Glucophage's benefits. Glucophage, itself, does not raise blood lactate levels and is therefore considerably safer than doctors originally thought.
Thought that was pretty interesting.
a good thing
The past week has been incredible! I've tried so many new foods and have learned more exercises, and it's all paid off. I feel so energized...a place I haven't been in years. I'm still exploring new foods and becoming more active, and it's paying off.
I've decided to take a more natural approach to my diet. And even though I never used to eat them a lot anyway, I'm cutting out processed foods completely and trying to eat more plant-based proteins and organic foods, and increasing the grains in my diet. I want to snack on veggies more too - so I have 6 smallers meals a day.
I've tried a lot of new recipes including barley and summer vegetable salad, mushroom barley pilaf, and quinoa salad with grilled asparagus and goat cheese. Everything has been so delicious!
I've also had fun learning new exercise moves lately, and walking more...and it's actually been fun!
I guess when the same old thing no longer works, it's time to try something new.
slowly but surely...
Hi! Although it’s been a while since I’ve posted here, I’ve got relatively good news to share. I’m actually feeling …well, GOOD, lately. I haven’t been in “goodland” for a long time now, and it’s great to be back!
I know WHY I’ve been feeling good, too. Approximately 2 weeks ago today, I stopped taking the birth control pill (which I’ve dubbed “poison pills”) for good. Never again! It’s amazing how much better I feel — the difference is like day and night! There are other options besides the pill (without the horrible side effects) that are just as ‘sure,’ which we will be adhering to.
After years of trial and error trying to figure out what my health problems stemmed from, I’ve finally come to the conclusion that it is the b/c pill that is the culprit. Looking back now, it’s rather clear that ALL my health problems started back in mid-2002 when I started the pill - a couple months before my wedding. I started gaining weight at an alarming weight, battled with extreme bloating, acne, fatigue & exhaustion, anxiety and depression, and started having major problems with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). All these things gradually started to get worse, after I started to take the pill. I went from a vibrant 20-something, to a tired weak 80-year-old in a matter of a few years. It was horrid.
So am I happy to be free of them? You bet your sweet potato I am! The first few days after I stopped taking them, I went through withdrawal…severe headaches, nausea and loss of appetite. I’m starting to feel much better now, though. My energy is slowly but surely returning, and I actually am starting to feel more like my old self again. There’s a spring in my step and a sparkle in my eyes. I am no longer bloated like I’m 5 months preggo, and my acne has entirely cleared up. In fact I’ve even lost a few pounds as well, which is definitely a bonus.
So yes, after over 4 years, I’m finally…slowly but surely…starting to reclaim my health again! Yesssss!
Next up to tackle? Walking more. While busy, I have a sedentary office job. I want to walk to work more, and in the evenings too. I am waiting for the sweltering heat to be out of the way first. Autumn is just around the corner - I come alive in the autumn and winter months. I can’t wait!
Take the gun, leave the cannoli
It's so frustrating. I've fallen off the saddle...AGAIN. And here I am right back at square one, damnit. Do I know I need a change in my diet in order to lose this weight and feel better? YES. Do I know I need a drastic change, and not just a half-hearted attempt that's not on plan? YES. So why can't I get my flabby arse in gear and just DO IT?!?! Argh!
I feel like Sir Lancelot in Monty Python & The Holy Grail - you know the scene where he's running but he's not getting anywhere? That's me. I guess I should be thankful that Lancelot ultimately reached his goal. That means I can too...eventually, if I just put my mind to it, and not let stupid things divert me from my destination, which is oh so important.....HEALTH!
So...to put it short, Monday I "go to mattresses". I'm declaring war on my weak willpower and careless eating habits. Heaven forbid I lose this battle yet again.
And there are far too many movie alusions in this entry. *sigh*
Week 2, thus far
Well let's just say it didn't get off to a good start, to say the
least. *sigh* Wednesday and Thursday were complete wash-outs. We had a major plumbing problem in the kitchen and as a result, I couldn't get into the kitchen to make my "on plan" meals or snacks, dagnabit. Rem and I ate out Wednesday for lunch & supper, and Thursday for lunch...waaaaay off plan. Ugh! Fortunately the plumber came in early this morning to fix the problem, so we've got a fully functional kitchen to go home to. Yay! I am NOT going to use these past couple off-plan days as an excuse to just stop altogether (I have a bad habit of thinking "all or nothing"). Tomorrow I WILL be back on plan 100%. I will prepare everything tonight.
Yesteryday, I was able to find some great tupperware containers at the dollar-store, which have double compartments — these are perfect for storing my snacks for work! They were a steal at a buck each. They're also freezer-friendly and microwavable. Good stuff.
I need to be reminded of how horrible I feel when I eat off plan. I
really do feel gross. The enjoyment of the off-plan foods that I so
crave are only fleeting and oh-so temporary - *extremely* temporary, because I often feel awful even after just 30-60 minutes after an off-plan meal...and then regret quickly follows. It's really not worth it. So I will mentally take a picture of how I feel after such a meal, and try to keep that in my mind for next time. Those few minutes of enjoyment really aren't doing me any good.
If I stuck to anything this week, it was my water consumption. I've been drinking my 100 oz (3L) quite faithfully every day, as is my custom anyhow. I've always been a big water drinker since I can remember. Not that I'm always thirtsy, but because I realize that it makes me feel so much better, and I hate the feeling of being dehydrated (headachey, feverish, sluggish...it's disgusting).
I have something to work towards... I really would like to feel
slimmer for the upcoming district convention the end of June. I have THREE FULL WEEKS until the convention, to see some difference. I know it won't be much, but I'd like to feel that tiny bit slimmer. That is why I want to put my *all* into these next few weeks and stay POP, even on the weekends. Hopefully my saris will be here before then; if not I'll have to scrounge around my closet, to see what I can look passable in. Then in July I have a wedding to go to. I'd really like to at least have lost one dress size by that time. I know it won't happen if I don't stay POP, so I'm going to give it my best shot to make it happen.
Here are my main areas of focus...
- Walk to work EVERYDAY (15 minutes each way) - this would count for 30 minutes of cardio every day, plus if I went home for lunch another 30 minutes per day! It all adds up.
- If at all possible, stay POP on weekends. If not, stick to some
semblance of the plan and make healthy choices to avoid salt & fat
- Keep drinking that water!
- I'm not starting the bands until I've lost 50% of the weight I want to lose.
weigh-in and goals
Week one's weigh-in ---- I've lost 6 lbs. after this first week. I'm quite sure I could've done better if I had not been on my monthly, had exercised more and had been a bit more strict with myself on plan during the weekend. But hey, 6 lbs. is nothing to complain about. I'm pleased as all get out. I wonder what week 2 shall bring?
SHORT TERM GOAL FOR WEEK #2
- start a more regular walking regime
- get into the 230's zone
- drink more water, daily
- add more salads to meals
end of week 1
Well, almost. Tuesday will be the official end of it, and it will be "weigh-in" day. I doubt I've lost much if any, this time around, seeing as I didn't stick to plan this week, didn't exercise AT ALL, and I'll be on my "." which never helps (I retain water very easily, and puff up like a blimp!) But in any case I don't care - I feel so much better. I don't feel as bloated as I usually do either and my IBS hasn't been acting up whatsoever.
(I've also heard that if you've started the plan and go off it for a little bit, and then start it over again, you don't lose as fast. I guess eveyrone is different. I don't know. Can't say it realy matters. All I know is this is the way of eating will be the best thing for me. And although it'll take time, it'll be worth it.)
My OFF day was on Friday, mainly, because I stayed home from work - took the day off, sick. Hardly ate any of my meals because I was sick to my stomach (thanks to a delayed "."). Mainly just drank lots of water, had some NSA soup and some rice.
Saturday was a baaaad off-track day. Feeling slightly better, and with a regained appetite (damn that voracious appetite!) I started the morning with two blueberry muffins w/margerine, a cup of hot tea (with soymilk) and a large glass of OJ (my ultimate weakness in the mornings!). ARGH! I felt like such a sinner. It was downhill from there. Had boiled perogies w/ sauteed onion, along with plain yogurt (in the place of sourcream) for lunch, and whole wheat pasta with tomato sauce for supper. No plan at all. At least it was all relatively healthy food, but still! Bad Bev!
I'm not downhearted though. I actually feel very positive and am eager to get back on track tomorrow. So I don't feel as though I've failed. Not like the last time. This is good.
I've got my meals planned out for the week again, which I find really helps, and I'm ready to go!
*hugs* to you who are following along with me, and providing such great support and kindness. (Especially you, Bee. Love ya!)
back in the saddle, again
So. I decided to start the plan again, as of today, after being off of it for about 2 weeks. I know, I know. I don't know why I just...stopped. Guess I lost momentum. My biggest problem was that I never weighed myself at the outset before I started (I just guessed, and I actually weigh more than my estimation), so I didn't really see my progress - that tends to make me lose motivation very easily, and thus the stoppage. Ugh! Now....I have a renewed vigor for this. I know I can do it. No more doubts.
My buddy Bee started again with me today (thanks Bee!) so now I've got a diet buddy, which always makes it more fun and motivating! She's a great friend. I know we'll both do great on this, if we stick to plan.
Yesterday - which was a holiday here in Canada - I took all my measurements, my *real* starting weight. I weighed myself in the middle of the day, naked, but bloated (I'm starting my period this week). I weighed 249 lbs.. Where this might not be my "true" weight right now, due to water retention and weighing at mid-day on a full stomach, I don't care. I'd rather weigh a bit more and see even better results as the days go by.
The most difficult part was taking all of my "before" photos...full body photos, in my underwear - these are to add to my "Tracking My Success" section (the place where you put your side, front and behind view photos). Let me just say...they're absolutely HORRIBLE. I have never realized how horrid I have become. I nearly burst into tears. Am I that big? Yes. In fact, that is an understatement.
You know what? I often have this glossed-over, faulty view of myself....that I'm not that big. For the longest time, I've been way too easy on myself. I've always gotten away with weighing a bit more for years, because I'm tall, big-boned and curvaceous. I think perhaps I've conditioned myself to this. It's become a habit - just being a bit too carefree when it comes to my weight. And look where it's gotten me. I'm FAT. It's horrible, but true. I can no longer fool myself into thinking that I'm "not that overweight." I am. VERY overweight, bordering on obese. That scares me.
Over the years I have created for myself a 'comfort zone' perhaps to pacify any guilt for not sticking to a proper eating plan, or a diet to lose this extra weight I've put on. Well, that's over with -- no more excuses.
As much as it hurt taking those "before" photos, I'm glad I did, because whenever I get the urge to fall off the proverbial wagon again, I will look at these photos, and get disgusted all over again. This is reality. I will realize that my body image and shape will not change (in fact, it'll only get worse) if I don't DO something about it. Yes it's going to be difficult, but I didn't get this way overnight...it will take time and hardwork. I'm not lazy! And so I don't want to look lazy.
The photos brought me back to reality.... this is what I really look like - no jokes about it. No excuses. No mind-games, telling myself "I'm not that big". No camoflauging or covering up my fat. I am fat. So....I MUST do this!
Designing my 'dream body' was also kind of fun - I adjusted my pic (via black marker) to the body that I want. There's LOTS of work to be done....but I know I can do it, if I really put my ALL in this. I don't want to do another 'half-hearted effort'...I don't want to say "maybe I'll fall off the wagon". I don't want to jeopardize my success by thinking that way. No. I WILL succeed this time! I will make healthy choices! At ALL times!
Sure, I can eat what I want...but I will CHOOSE to eat on plan. I will not allow myself to feel deprived, but because I am NOT deprived. It's just dieter's pity rearing it's ugly head. I am eating good food that is delicious *and* good for me. That is not deprivation. In fact, if I am depriving myself from anything, it's from feeling miserable, wearing ill-fitting clothes, and feeling bad about myself about being overweight. I WILL be depriving myself from those things...and that is GOOD!
I will do this!
My first day back went well. I stayed POP, and felt pretty good. Aside from being hungry, I didn't have too much of a headache, or cravings...which I'm rather surprised about (period should be starting any day now!). Maybe tomorrow it will kick in. I'd not complain if they didn't, though. heh!
So the past week or so I haven't followed the plan perfectly. In fact, far from perfectly. I guess I just didn't have the motivation for it. I'm having a difficult time keeping motivated, with so many things bringing me down, as of late. But I don't want to give it up. I don't. Why? Because I know it *will* work for me. I lost 5 lbs. in the first week, and I never even stuck to the plan perfectly. So I know it'll work. I just have to stick to it, and keep myself motivated....and most important of all, give it my ALL. It's more than just saying it...it's actualy DOING it! I must!
I purchased the "American Makeover Cookbook" (which should really be included in the 6WBMO kit) and it arrived late last week. For a $50 cookbook it's kind of small. The recipes are ...meh... "okay". I feel it was far over-priced for the few recipes in it; most of which are found on the recipe exchange on the online forum. There are a few in the book that aren't online, I'm sure. They do sound pretty good and a nice bonus is that there are a few inspirational stories and pictures from some of the recipe submitters. However, if you're thinking of getting it for the recipes only, I recommend spending a little bit more for a cheap printer -if you don't have one yet- and print off the plethora of wonderful recipes on the 6WBMO recipe exchange. Make your own cookbook. :)
Bee, if you are reading this - would you like to start afresh with me? (But only if you're feeling up to it, of course.) Pick a day and we'll start it full-force, together. Perhaps email during the day, or after work, to see how we did. Yay or nay?