Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Well hello!

It's been almost 4 months since I've blogged. I've been using my Facebook page pretty often to update my progress and struggles and all that good stuff. But I figure now and then I should say something here for the heck of it.

Things are going well. Since I started in October, I've lost 43 lbs. I'm very close to hitting 40 lbs since seriously starting in January. My entire body is feeling better, and that's both because of the actual weight loss, but also because of the food I'm putting into it and the activity I'm taking part in. I'm down 2 sizes (started at 22, now an 18) and happy about that.

I've started doing yoga about twice a week, and pilates here and there (I have a 5 class punch card, so we'll see how long it takes to use it up). I have 7 5Ks set up for this summer, with an 8th possible. I don't really run (not at this weight, especially), but anytime you move your body forward for 3.1 miles, it's not a bad thing.

I've been sticking incredibly well to my clean eating. I've taken a few "cheat" days here and there, but get right back on track the next day. I actually feel pretty crappy after I've eaten poorly, and there have been a couple times that I know I could have something "bad" but just don't want to. The issue here is that I can't let myself slip into my old ways because once I start eating poorly, my body gets used to it and I don't feel so "bad" about how I feel. I really want to get my A1C (diabetes test) checked again soon to see if the numbers have gone down more.

I've still got a long ways to go, that's for sure, but every day is a step closer. Sometimes it seems daunting, but then I look at how far I've come already. It's been worth every sacrifice.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Small steps on a big journey

Right now I'm 17 pounds into a 122 lb. journey (this includes weight I had already lost prior to taking the month of December off). This journey, however, will never be over for me. I will reach my destination, but the only way for me to enjoy the finish line is to learn the tools I need to beat my eating disorder.

Right now, I'm only seeing my therapist once a month. Things are going well for me, and I find it easy to stick with my clean eating routine. I know it will take me about a year to reach my goal, but I am committed. As I near my goal, I am going to up my therapy to learn and master the skills I need.

If you've never suffered from addiction or an eating disorder, please, PLEASE know how fortunate you are. I could never comprehend it ten years ago. I've learned why it is that I do what I do, and that's a great beginning in order to conquer my food addiction. As I've said so many times, being addicted to food is an awful addiction. I won't argue that any sort of addiction is awful, but the truth is that drugs, alcohol, etc are things you CAN live without. You need food. An alcoholic can avoid drinking and being around alcohol temptations, but a binge eater can't avoid or go without food. It's impossible. That's why relearning my eating habits are so important.

The thing that is hardest for me is the fact that I don't remember how I used to eat. You know, for the first 33 years of my life. Of course I had the occasional pint of ice cream or 4 pieces of pizza, but I didn't binge regularly. I don't KNOW how normal people eat. I mean, I understand food proportions and meal sizes, but knowing and doing are different.

I've spent the last 8 years or so gaining and losing, gaining and losing. And gaining. I can't imagine the type of damage I've done to my body. It's so important for me to learn how to eat mindfully and not treat food as "good" or "bad", just as food. Obviously I know there are foods that are better and worse for you, but that's the problem - I see food as "good" or "bad" and once I go down the "bad" path, I stay on that path. I can't separate having a piece of cake from eating bad. It's either you eat "good" or you eat "bad" in my mind. So, having a piece of cake after dinner could be disastrous for me. I just want to be able to EAT without thinking or worrying.

So yes, I've made small steps in my weight loss journey. But this journey will be a long one. A lifelong one.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The food I eat

I've had several people over the last month or so ask me about what exactly I'm eating these days, so I figured I'd post a brief synopsis.

I'm losing weight because my body is in a light state of ketosis. Here's the basics of what exactly ketosis is:

 In terms you and I can understand, when your body is in ketosis, you feel less hungry so you may eat less. Also, instead of burning carbs for energy as your body normally does, it begins to burn fat. Hence (sometimes) rapid weight loss. 

 Now, MRC puts your body in a light form of ketosis. Carbs break down to glucose which is used for energy. If there is not enough glucose, as in a low glycemic diet, the body then turns to stored fat for energy. 

 Here’s the kicker, though, and why you tend to GAIN a lot of weight if you eat off program, even if you are careful to not eat too poorly, or eat too many excess calories: for every gram of carbs you eat when your body is in ketosis, your body stores it with 3 grams of water. Eat one pound of carbs? Gain 4 pounds. MRC keeps your body in a mild form of ketosis, since you consume enough carbs to keep your brain and body functioning (80-100g of carbs a day). When you eat off program (i.e. consume too many carbs) it will take 3 days for your body to get back into ketosis if you eat 100% on program. This is because the body stores 3 days worth of glucose to burn. Once you eat on program for 3 days, this reserve of glucose is gone and your body begins to burn fat.

It operates on a 60% protein, 20% fat, 20% carb premise. That's enough carbs to keep your brain function healthy and enough protein to burn fat for energy. The key is finding the ratio. Since I was on the MRC program about 4 years ago, I kept the menus and food lists so I know what foods are ok and what aren't.

 Lean proteins are key, and you can have a fattier one (i.e. salmon, seafood etc) once a week. I eat a lot of bison, elk, lean grass fed beef, chicken breast and tilapia.

 Veggies have to be lower carb veggies, so no potatoes, carrots, corn, onions etc. I eat a ton of grape tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, summer squash, cucumbers and spaghetti squash.

 Fruit is the same, lower carb fruit. My go-to is honeycrisp apples. I also love strawberries, cantaloupe and honeydew.

 Carbs are limited. 1/4 c beans, oatmeal, etc. I generally stick with a slice of Sara Lee Delightful bread. I have egg sandwiches for breakfast, and open face burgers/chicken sandwiches for dinner. I also drink a protein drink (available from Diet Direct) with each meal, and one additional. This gives you the additional protein you need to push you into ketosis, and it's only 70 calories.

 Here's a daily menu:
protein drink

protein drink

protein drink

 A regular day for me (including lunch on the go since I work out of my car) is:

 Breakfast: 2 fried eggs on a slice of Sara Lee bread + drink

 Lunch: 3 oz hard cheese, apple, grape tomatoes + drink

 Dinner: 6oz bison burger on a slice of Sara Lee bread with broccoli + drink

 Snack: drink I am not hungry.

My body has detoxed because of all the clean food I've been eating. The least clean food I eat is the bread. I try to buy organic as much as possible as my budget will allow. I don't crave anything. I don't get jealous when I see others eating foods I shouldn't eat.

 I've lost 25 lbs in 6 weeks. I'll be taking about 2 weeks off program for a vacation and a few events when I return home, and then getting back on the wagon until Christmas. I'll take off Christmas to New Year and then hit it hard. I know due to the principles of ketosis I will likely gain 10lbs of water weight during those 2 weeks, and I'm ok with that.

 So, that's the basics. Things will change a lot when I hit goal (hopefully within the next year, I have 97 more lbs to lose) as I start to add foods back in. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

That time food almost killed me

Better known as, the past 8 years or so. When you're eating as you please and not getting anywhere near your required servings of fruits and vegetables and eating fatty meats and tons of carbs and sugar, you may not recognize that the reason you're always tired, crabby, sluggish, bloated and have other health issues is because of the food. The truth is, I KNOW this. I tell my therapist this often - I KNOW how to eat. I could teach anyone how to eat, and what to eat - especially my patients who are working on healing. I have gone through numerous diet plans and felt the benefits of healthy eating, yet fallen back into old bad habit of eating "whatever". Honestly, I don't know why I fall back into bad habits. This is why I'm in therapy. But I can tell you that in 3 weeks of eating 80-90% clean and getting my daily requirements of veggies and fruit, that I feel like a different person. Prior to this, there were very few days I could get through without having to take a nap because I was that exhausted - even with 8 hours of sleep the night prior. I've been on anti-depressants for 9 years, and this summer had to double my dose because my original dose wasn't cutting it. Three weeks. Actually, I felt it by two weeks. I am no longer on edge all the time. I am no longer short tempered with my daughter. I've taken 1 nap in that time. And I'm actually working harder and stressing my body more than I have been in a long time. The fact that I'm losing weight makes me extremely happy, but what makes me even happier is that I FEEL good. I've done the Weight Watchers thing and struggled because they let you eat "whatever". You can spend all your points in one day on ice cream sandwiches, or you could eat fruits and veggies. They recommend you eat healthy food, of course, but you can use your "points" however you choose to. I've counted calories, and inevitably I use them on heavier foods, not fruits and veggies. Because of this, I may have lost weight but I still felt crummy. And all the excess carbs that broke down to sugar just made me hungry faster. And they made me crave even more sugar. So here's the deal - if I had kept on eating the way I was eating, things would have gotten worse. Inevitably I would have gained more weight, but when I think about how I felt, I know that the food was doing a number on my body. I know my blood sugars get way out of whack, and I know I can work on keeping them steady by eating well. I know that if I kept eating poorly it could greatly affect my future. Trust me when I say I still am relatively miserable. I weigh about 100 lbs more than my "normal" adult weight. I feel GOOD because I am eating well, and I have lost close to 20 lbs now. I still get winded when I walk too far. I still can't fit into the clothes I really want to be wearing. I still have a long way to go. But I FEEL good, and when you FEEL good you're more motivated to continue to feel good. I challenge you - start small. Take a week and eat clean. Cut your carbs. Increase your protein. Eat your fruits and veggies. And get back with me and tell me what kind of change you feel.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The cost of being overweight

One of the misconceptions about eating healthy is that it costs more. While some foods may cost more (i.e. grass fed beef, organic veggies and fruits, lean cuts of meat), that is a very short term cost. In the long term, not eating healthy can cost you thousands more in health related costs. This is an infographic I got from Medifast. I did the Medifast program last year and lost 65 lbs. It's not the program for me anymore, as you don't eat enough "real" food, but the point made by this infograpic is very important.

Cost of Being Unhealthy

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Getting back up is hard to do

I fell down hard after I returned back to Colorado from our trip to Minnesota in early August. It was a combination of many things, but a big part of it was depression from returning from our trip. My bingeing (I still have no idea how to spell it, so I should really stop doing that) has gotten out of control again, and my self worth is in the red.

We have a lot of other life issues going on in our house - don't worry, my family and pets are fine, as is our marriage, but there are a lot of stressors. I've continued on with therapy, and I have an amazing therapist. I'm working with my husband on some changes we need to make to help me in the evenings when I'm most susceptible to my binge attacks.

I'm lonely. I eat because I'm lonely. This has been going on for 9 years, coincidentally the same amount of time I have lived in Colorado. I never dealt with anything like this before in my life.

I was doing well for quite some time and feeling good about myself, but I fell off course and then I couldn't even find the course. I have zero self esteem, and there are days I have to force myself to get out of bed. I'm exhausted all the time. I don't want to do anything or be around anyone.

I have said that I'm not going to do any "extreme" dieting or anything, but I decided I'm going to start back up on my Metabolic Research Center plan that I did 4 years ago and lost 75+ pounds with. I have found with all my "dieting" that the only sort of plan that works for me is a very rigid one that can't be deviated from. I'm not re-joining the center because 1. it costs way too much 2. they advise you to take unnecessary supplements 3. I still have my old menus from being on the plan before and 4. I can buy the same sort of protein drinks for less on DietDirect.com. I'll be starting as soon as my drinks get here. The thing about the MRC plan that I like is that you eat real food all day long, not meal supplements or shakes, or bars. Plenty of protein, fruit, veggies and light carbs. No dairy, which makes the milk-aholic in me sad, but I also know that milk flares up my eczema.

I need to do something serious and do it soon. My body aches and I am out of breath easily. I don't have the energy to do much of anything. We have a vacation to Disneyland and SoCal coming up in about 8 weeks and at this rate I will be miserable. I need to start, and I need to be serious.

I wish I didn't have to keep blogging about my failures. One day I want to be a success story, and I want to look back a year after that and STILL be a success story.

Monday, July 28, 2014

What's on your gym playlist?

I always love to hear what people listen to at the gym, or while running/exercising. Here's a peek into mine.

  • Girlfriend - Avril Lavigne
  • Toxic - Britney Spears
  • Hollaback Girl - Gwen Stefani
  • On Top of the World - Imagine Dragons
  • Don't Stop Believin' - Journey
  • Stronger - Britney Spears
  • Bad Romance - Lady Gaga
  • Microphone - 98 Degrees
  • Dirty Dancing - NKOTB
  • The Devil Went Down to Georgia - Zac Brown Band
  • How Far We've Come - Matchbox Twenty
  • Ring of Fire - Social Distortion
  • Remix - NKOTB
  • SexyBack - Justin Timberlake
  • One - Metallica
  • American Idiot - Green Day
  • Forgot About Dre - Dr Dre & Eminem
  • Lose Yourself - Eminem
  • My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark - Fall Out Boy