Thursday, January 03, 2013
Today is my second day on the South Beach Diet--Phase I. The purpose of this 14-day eating plan is to banish food cravings, whisk away the two pounds I gained over the holidays and recharge my motivation.
Today, I followed my plan to the letter:
Breakfast--eggs and turkey bacon
Snack--celery and laughing cow cheese
Lunch--burger patty and grilled vegetables
Dinner--3 oz grilled chicken and a tossed salad
Dessert--sugar free jello and a dollop of whipped topping
All in all, a disciplined day. I even spent some time in the kitchen grilling vegetables, baking chicken breasts, cooking hamburger patties and washing/cutting/bagging celery.
In general, people lose 3-7 pounds during Phase I. Hopefully, I'll achieve similar results. My next scheduled weigh in is Wednesday, so we'll see.
Wednesday, January 02, 2013
Hard to believe that one year ago, I was 50 pounds heavier than I am today. Compared with the chaotic years of 2009, 2010 and 2011, last year was a pretty good year. I feel very blessed that the worst moments of 2012 consisted of solvable problems and not anything devastating.
I've been somewhat absent from SP for the last two weeks, for no real good reason and I have a two pound weight gain to prove it. However, the lesson I've learned from years of weight problems is that it's easier to take off two pounds than 52 pounds. So, now that I'm back and ready to get focused again, I'm confident that those two pounds will gone soon.
For 2013, I have set a goal to lose the last 20 pounds I'm carrying around and to reach my goal weight. The only deadline I've set is that they MUST be gone by my high school class reunion in August. Eight months is PLENTY of time to drop the weight, however my preference is that I lose it in five months. That's 1 pound a week.
To get myself back in gear, I've switched up on my eating plan. I'm saying goodbye to weekly meetings at WW. I like WW, but I don't like paying $42 a month to attend what's averaging out to two meetings a month. I also don't feel like getting up-to-speed on all the changes they've made to the program recently. Instead, I am kicking off this year with two weeks of the South Beach Phase 1 diet before I return to my regular SP eating plan. The idea is to jumpstart the weight loss and re-ignite my motivation to continue losing weight.
So, for the next two weeks, my eating plan will look something like this:
Breakfast: eggs, and turkey bacon
Snack: pistachio nuts, celery&hummus, or string cheese
Lunch: lean meat and a veggie
Snack: pistachio nuts, celery&hummus, or string cheese
Dinner: lean meat and a veggie
Dessert: sugar free jell-o+ whipped topping
No bread, little sugar, no fruit or starchy vegetables. Just for two weeks.
I also need to revisit my exercise routine and make some adjustments for winter weather. Generally, in the winter time, I exercise less at the gym and more at home. On the plus side, I have a stationary bike and some DVD's to work out to. On the minus side, I haven't worked out since I went running about a week ago.
Oh well, it does no good for me to get mad at myself. I'm human and I don't do anything perfectly. That's life. The good news is, I'm still here on SP, still blogging and ready to say goodbye to twenty more pounds.
Happy new year!
Onward and downward.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
This morning when I weighed in, I discovered that Iíve lost Ĺ a pound. I was elated because my weight loss has nearly plateaued. I have lost five pounds since early October. Iím exercising 3-4 times a week at best and have recently missed a few days of tracking my food.
This afternoon, I went to a luncheon and ordered a healthy entrťe. But when they brought out the desserts I lost my ever-loviní mind! I ate a huge slice of peppermint ice cream pie and five freshly baked cookies. Donít get me wrong, the food was absolutely delicious, but was it really necessary for me to turn into a human vacuum cleaner? Itís almost as if losing that Ĺ pound during the holiday season gave me the license to eat like it was my last day on earth. Whatís up with that?
To make matters worse, I have a holiday party to go to this evening, so no exercise and more tempting food. My body is not used to consuming such rich foods, so I already know thereís going to be a price for this mini-binge, aside from regaining that 1/2 pound I fought to lose.
The only strategy I have is to get back on track with my eating as best I can the rest of the day and really monitor my intake tomorrow, when I wonít have any luncheons or parties to sidetrack me.
Onward and downward (one day!)
Monday, December 03, 2012
Yesterday, I spent hours just mentally focusing on my goal to drop the remaining 17 pounds. How did I do this?
1) I read LOTS of success stories and watched inspiration videos on youtube. One of my favorite links is about a girl who lost 150 pounds! You can view her latest vlog here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0US2AbQpxA&
2) I created a montage of me during my weight loss journey with the header "50 pounds down, 17 to go, you can do it!!" I printed it out and posted it on my fridge. I also printed out my favorite SP quotes for posting around my home.
3) I read a few magazine articles and a couple of e-books on motivation.
4) I revisited ALL of the reasons why I want to lose this weight and thought hard about what my life would've been like now if I had continued to keep my head buried in the sand this year. Would I have gained another 20 pounds? What would I have looked like? What size would I be wearing? How would I have felt about myself? Would I have ended up diabetic?
5) I thought long and hard about how my weight had been affecting me physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally. Do I want to return to that life?
6) Instead of going to the gym, I took my dog for a hike at a nearby dog park. It was good to be outdoors in sunny 65 degree weather and doing something different for exercise. Changing up my routine helped me move for the pleasure of moving, not because it's something I'm supposed to do.
7) I created a list of 15 healthy meals--five meals per course and began developing a shopping list.
8) I planned what I would be eating today and focused on ways I could cut my calorie intake without feeling deprived.
9) Instead of moping about these pesky 3-4 pounds I can't seem to lose this month, I just accepted that my body is going to lose weight when it's ready to--not when I'm ready to. It just let go of 50 pounds! I focused on accepting that my body is using this plateau to make further adjustments before it will release more weight. Understanding this calmed me down a bit.
10) I mentally replayed all the compliments that I've gotten on my appearance so I could take ownership of my hard work and pat myself on the back.
The day I spent reading, thinking, visualizing, praying and meditating has already paid off. Today was one of the most disciplined, focused days I've had in awhile.
What I've learned is that some of the hokey-sounding activities that experts recommend for motivation really do work. I believe it was worthwhile for me to embrace the spiritual aspect of what I'm doing. Its such an important ingredient in motivation that it's impossible to move forward without it.
Onward and downward.
Friday, November 30, 2012
How many times do I need to remind myself, "If this was easy, then everyone would be thin." Staying focused during the holiday season is tough work. I feel like I'm in control, but not enough to really lose any weight. Instead, I've plateaued back and forth between the same two pounds. This time around, my plateau is not much of a mystery. I'm struggling for several reasons, which I'll list below:
1. I only have 15-25 pounds to lose. In order to lose more weight I will need to make more changes to my eating and exercise. Am I prepared to make these changes? My motivation to do so waxes and wanes.
2. It's the holiday season. Enough said about that.
3. It's harder to exercise. I usually drive to the gym after work. Now, it's dark when I get off work and all I want to do is go home and curl up on the couch with a good book, a cup of tea and a warm tv. Also, exercising outdoors is not an option on most days.
4. I'm hungrier (yikes!) Is it my body fighting what it believes is a famine, or is there something I'm eating that's increasing my appetite? I don't know, but this is a problem.
5. I'm having a hard time escaping the mentality of needing to lose X pounds a month, so I end up frustrated and impatient.
6. My sense of urgency is gone. I'm looking good and in better health, which is causing me to coast a little because I worked hard for 10 months.
I know my weight loss journey is not over and my doctor agrees. My BMI is 27. My waist is still a disappointing 36", which is keeping me out of a solid size 10. All 15-20 of my extra pounds are around my middle. Although my blood sugar is normal, I'm still pre-diabetic. My doctor says I have "inflammation." My health is still at risk.
The only thing I'm keeping in mind, if I'm correct, is that Jennifer Hudson didn't lose her weight in one year. I think it took her nearly two years. I remember when she went from "thick" to "average." At 5'9", she looked like she had gone from a size 16 to about a 10. Then, in year two, she started to look "slender." I estimate she went from a 10 to about a four. Now, I'm not trying to be a size four, but it helps to know that when you have a lot of weight to lose, sometimes it's going to take longer than a year.
I don't think I'm going to hit the weight loss goal I set for December 31. I'm bouncing between 2 and 4 pounds away.
What I'm thinking about doing is just calling this "plateau" my maintenance phase, then get aggressive in January, when the rest of the U.S.A. is dieting. Maybe do a two week "jumpstart diet" to whisk away some weight real fast and reignite my motivation.
Like the saying goes, "It's hard to lose weight, it's hard to maintain, it's hard to be fat, choose your hard."
Just for now, I chose to stick with my baby steps and do the best I can each day, even if it doesn't show up on the scale.
Onward and (one day) downward.
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