Tuesday, March 03, 2009
So I am always trying different things to see what my body responds to. I have learned that EVERYTHING works. It's just a matter of being able to stick to something for the long haul, and being consistent with exercise. Some approaches to weight loss require less deprivation than others. Here are the things I have tried..... and regained weight doing.
1. weight watchers (I am a lifetime member). The more flexible that program became, the less it worked for me, though.
2. Curves (they have a book with a 3-phase nutrition plan similar to South Beach)
3. South Beach
5. Weight loss doctor I went to (restricted calories to 800 a day, with only 17 grams of fat and 40 carbs-- also prescribed phen-phen [phentermine and phenfluramine-now off the market]
6. The Mediterranean Diet
7. The Insulin Resistance Diet
8. Suzzane Somers food combo thing
9. Oprah's challenge/ Bob Greene's book
10. Life without Bread (the book/plan)
So all of these work. But they all require either too much deprivation, or offer too much flexibility. But.... I have found something that seems DO-able, for my personality type. I think I can stick to this... it's just the right amt. of deprivation needed, and also just the right amount of flexibility. It's called the ALTERNATE DAY diet. I hate the word diet; always have. I'd like to think that this could be a lifestyle change for me... a way of life with respect to how I eat.
One day on the Sparkpeople start page, I clicked on the featured article, which wasn't really an article, but an invitation to read people's blogs. One member's blog title caught my attention, and so I clicked on it and read it. I had no idea what she was talking about, because she was speaking in acronyms (ADD; UD, DD, JUDDDD), but she seemed excited and her ticker showed an awesome amt. of progress with her weight loss. I googled her acronyms, and discoverd the Alternate Day Diet (ADD). UD means UP day--- a day in which you eat normally, without deprivation, close to the amt of calories for your RMR (resting metabolic rate). DD means DOWN day-- a day in which you restrict your caloric intake to no more than 35% of your RMR. The calories on that day should be nutrient dense.
The scientific evidence for alternate day calorie restriction in mice and primates as well as other life forms is incredible. Even more importantly than weight loss, this approach activates genes that assist other metabolic processes which reduce inflammation, insulin resistance, blood glucose levels, hdl, and so on. Even in the absence of weight loss, subjects following this regimen all had improved blood glucose levels, insulin levels, etc, and reported high levels of satisfaction. I got the book, have been reading it... have begun implementing this style of eating. I feel great. I feel like I can stick to this. Best of all, I've lost FIVE pounds! granted, some of this is water weight, but that's ok. I retain water like a sponge, and am glad to have some of that off.
I'm attaching the link to the author's website. He (Dr. Jame Johnson) is the creator of this program, which he based on scientific studies.
Santosh is doing it with me. It's very early yet, so I am not yet exhaling, but I'm feeling enthusiastic and hopeful- something I have not felt in a while! www.johnsonupdaydowndaydiet.com/html
Thursday, February 26, 2009
So Claire broke her nose on the 17th going up for a rebound, and smacking her nose against some girl. Today was the surgery-- short and simple, but still done under a general anesthesia. She's fine, and healing... but dad wants to throw a mask on her so she can continue to play in the playoffs next week. The doc didn't forbid it, but highly discouraged it. I could just feel him shaking his head and thinking, "freaky sports parents". I hope dad will come to his senses and just let her heal.
On top of that, I'm sicker than a dog. I haven't been sick for one second all year, and now I have chest congestion, coughing, stuffy nose, temp, headache, etc. I feel like crap, and yet I have to go to school tomorrow (because it's our end of the trimester awards assembly), and make "jello rainbows" with 20 kindergartners. *sigh*
Am reading about calorie cycling and the "alternate day diet". No matter what I do, I just keep gaining and losing the same 3 pounds. It's irritating, but at least I haven't thrown in the towel and and gone on any eating binges. The running and yoga will resume when I can breath without hacking up yellow stuff. ugh! I'm taking ActivaMune, and I hope it kicks in here soon!
Monday, February 16, 2009
Ok, so Valentine's day was loads of fun! We attended a masquerade ball with 4 other couples. First we went to dinner and enjoyed some pre-party appetizers and drinks. The event was held at an office complex, where part of the inside had been made over into a mini nightclub. Though the choices were slim, it was an open bar. A huge dessert table had been set up, with white, milk, and dark chocolate fountains, along with a huge assortment of chocolate goodies. There was a DJ and all that- but the most fun was the "stripper pole" they had set up in the front of the dance floor. I'd always heard that pole dancing was a good workout, but I'd only want to try it in the context of a class at a gym, for fitness purposes. Nevertheless, after a malibu and pineapple, a margarita, a glass of wine, 2 kamikaze shots, and half a beer, I was ready to try the pole! They had a "competition", in which the winner (determined by loudest applause) would win her own pole (come in a large box-- I didn't know these could be purchased!) My friend and coworker (much younger and thinner than me) signed us teachers up for the competition. There were 4 of us up there looking like complete idiots. We were just basically holding on to the pole and dancing around it in circles. Not wanting to look so blah, I decided to bust out some moves. All I can say is that I was EXHAUSTED!!!! I kept waiting for the DJ to kick us off so that the next girl could get up there!! Finally, our turn was over, but not before I broke a decent sweat.... and made 2 bucks!! I wanted to find whoever stuffed the dollars in my shoe and sleeve, but with all the people there, there was no way of knowing. Anyway, I sparked the pole dancing as fitness minutes, under "disco dancing". Wish I'd had my monitor on! I danced pretty much every song for 2 hours, so I felt like I burned off that alcohol, at the very least. Needless to say that Sunday was a rest-day!!
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Ok, so I saw my endocrinologist on Friday. On paper, I no longer seem diabetic (labs)-- but that's based on my current A1c (only 5.6). My insulins however, are still excessive and not much better with Byetta. I'm on a maximum dose, so there were no changes to my Byetta dose, but I am to be more consistent with taking my meds (sometimes, I get so pissed about taking Glucophage, byetta, lipitor, etc that I just blow it off). I got scolded for arbitrarily deciding to go off my statin (Lipitor). I defended myself, citing all kinds of studies I'd read touting the evils of statins. Dr. Becker said, "well you're not reading the equal number of studies that support the use of statins. Lipitor is KNOWN to ward off Alzheimer's; I'd sell my SOUL, not to get Alzheimer's!". He's funny. Ok. So I'll take my lipitor like a good girl. It's just weird, because I don't take it for cholesterol control: I take it for some other condition noted in my labwork (high C-reactive protein). Whatever. I'm just so tired of meds. And he increased my dose of cytomel (thyroid) because I still have those stupid nodules all over my thyroid). I like when I'm taken OFF meds... or my doses are reduced. Argh!
But Becker gave me this challenge: If you can be C O N S I S T E N T... with your LOW CARB diet, staying around 1100 calories a day.... consistent with cardio (I'm shooting for 30 min, 6 days per week), with my yoga/strength training, and consistent with taking my meds.... no experiments with adding things or going off of things....taking them at the prescribed times of day, every day, until my NEXT appt on June 12, then..
...... he will begin me on HGH supplementation.
Human Growth Hormone. He says it is experimental. But as a top endocrinologist, I would only try this under his supervision. I've been reading a bit about this treatment since he mentioned it: You can find a clinic that will treat with HGH, but there are nightmare stories that go with taking it. Other people swear by it. I guess it helps you dip into the FAT reserves first, as opposed to your body dipping into carb reserves. It also helps you to build lean muscle mass, or at least, preserve what you have. Many people have successfully lost weight taking HGH. Many have found that their need for bp meds, statins, and diabetes meds are eliminated or reduced. I guess it's worth a try. But it makes me nervous: Byetta was supposed to be a wonder drug for my diabetes/weight. It only helped marginally.
As for weight loss surgery, here's what Dr. Becker had to say about Vertical Sleeve Gasterectomy: "you'll relapse. Your stomach will stretch over time. Happens to everyone. Waste of money."
Ok. 'nuf said. engagementsandweddings.redding.com/e
Sunday, February 01, 2009
Ok, I'm ready for the scheduled protest at the City council mtg, for Tues. I have finished my speech, and I'm posting it here. On another note, my yoga instructor has asked me to be her permanent sub for when she's gone, and can't teach class! I'll make 20 bucks a class, and will get two weeks worth of classes in May or June, and a few sprinkled here and there. Sweet!
Here's my speech. I'm nervous, but I think it will appease a wide variety of audience, while making its point:
My name is Lisa Peterson. I'm a 40 year resident of Redding, and have taught elementary school in Redding for the past 21 years. I'd like to begin by thanking the council for allowing us to speak, this evening.
I'm here to advocate for better policy-making, and better customer service, from the City of Redding's Electric utilities. Current policy and practices may be debated by some to be cruel, inhumane, unlawful, unreasonable, and, as one former city attorney termed it, "downright thuggish". But I stand here before you with an understanding of the adage that sometimes, it just comes down to "business is business".
Nobody here tonight expects free utility service. Nobody here is confused by the logic of having your power shut off for non-payment. Many of us understand that Consistent bill collection is one business practice that keeps businesses in the black. Consistent bill collection has allowed REU to keep its rates low, so it is said.
Furthermore, we understand that we are to feel reassured: reassured, to some extent, by your declaration that you DO stand ready to assist those in need. Recent articles in the Redding Record Searchlight quote city officials who maintain that a "simple phone call" is all it takes, to begin payment arrangements. More officials are quoted as stating that the practice of abatement (not eviction) for residents who are unable to pay their bills and/or reconnection fees, is rarely implemented. We are asked to feel comforted by your assertion that only residents in homes without power, that are deemed immediately dangerous, are at risk for abatement. Finally we are asked to find reassurance in the knowledge that as soon as these residents can scrounge together their outstanding bill amounts, they can move back into their homes, and their power will be restored.
And you almost had me. But as a citizen of the city of Redding, I do not feel reassured by your words.
I read the news. I read with interest, the story of the woman who spent two years on the streets of Redding, when she was unable to find compassion and flexibility in creating a payment plan, when she made that call. You may say to me, "that is just one case out of many". I say, "that is one case too many".
I read with with sadness about the dad who described a very understanding sequence of events, leading up to him having to choose between paying his electric bill and his child support. When he anguished and decided to pay his child support, it took not time at all for him to be ousted from his home.
I've been reading about the number of people who have encountered rough times...who have asked that their payment due date might be extended by one, two, or three days until a payday, only to learn that they were not only denied…. But humiliated and disgraced in the process by your customer service representatives.
We've all read countless posts and comments from citizens who have shared their stories; stories that reveal insensitive, rigid, customer service reps. We've read about, or experienced first hand, outrageous policies demanding exorbitant amounts of money above and beyond what is owed by people, just to reconnect their electric service. The stories continue, and depict a city utilities company whose policies are mirrored by no other.
And because of your seemingly unprecedented policy, we've become a discomfiture: a community not known for it's compassion, morale, or camaraderie. Instead, We've become the city known for it's inefficiency, inflexibility, and greed, with respect to its leadership.
I ask you tonight to give Redding a chance. Restore this city to one of which we can all be proud to call home. Restore power to those who demonstrate true hardship. Replace rigid, inflexible policies that force decent, hardworking people from their homes, with policies that better take into consideration not only extenuating circumstances, but also the myriad of ill-consequence that results from abating citizens. And please, Restore compassion, intelligence, and common sense to the customer service representatives in your employ.
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