Monday, March 05, 2012
Although I joined SparkPeople right before New Yearís, my journey to weight loss began this summer. In fact, it began with my co-worker receiving the diagnosis of pre-diabetes. Her high blood sugar levels that were causing her to fall asleep at work. She was understandably upset. I told her it would be OK and that she just needed to make a couple, easy changes to her diet. So, she stopped drinking her daily Frappecinos and began bringing fresh fruit to snack on. As she gradually began to have more energy, she became more active. This was no easy matter for her, as she has nerve damage and an artificial knee replacement. She greeted each of these changes with a positive, cheery attitude. Before long, she noticed that she was able to fasten her belt on a tighter notch. I am happy to tell you that she now needs to buy new pants because all of her pants are falling off.
Watching my co-worker begin her journey reminded me of all the things I do know about weight loss and healthy eating. That all the little things we do each day, really do add up and matter. Also, watching her, I began to be afraid for myself. I already was borderline with my blood sugar.I And I too was beginning to have problems falling asleep at work. My blood pressure was elevated even with my doctor doubling my meds.
But, I was so tired food didnít even taste good to me. Many of my favorite foods no longer tasted good. Instead, I was eating Chobani yogurt for lunch, or McDonalds, and lots of junk food from the vending machine. I would grab something from the vending machine when ever I was going to fall asleep. A six pack of diet soda took up permanent residence at my desk. I absolutely could not be caught sleeping at work or HR would begin harassing me like my co-worker. What was I going to do? I just didnít have the energy to begin a diet and exercise program.
Instead, I visited my MD. His diagnosis was insomnia with possible depression. He gave me a mild tricyclic antidepressant to help me sleep. The pills did work to help me sleep, but at the same time my depression changed from possible to actual. So, I started reading about depression. The one thing that stuck in my mind was that exercise was one of the best remedies. The solution, get my self off the coach and out for a walk. I have to say, that I didnít really enjoy the first few walks, but I did notice that I felt better afterwards. The other piece of advice, was to begin doing the things that I enjoyed doing. So I did. Sometimes I liked them, sometimes I didnít. But the point was to try to re-establish my old routine.
By the time I had enough sleep to really feel better, I was well over 20 pounds above my last high weight. I so clearly remember the first time I stepped on that scale after many months of avoidance. It felt so overwhelming. I felt like I was trapped in a very large hole with no shovel large enough to dig myself out.
About a month later, I found the SparkPeople app on my phone. I am so glad I downloaded it. I began checking out the site. Finally, at the end of December I was ready and looking forward to eating healthy and exercising. It was approximately a six month journey to be ready. I am so glad that I found SparkPeople. I am in month two of my new healthy lifestyle. This week marks my first week where I didnít have any ďlights outĒ days. Thatís what I call the days, where no matter what, my brain switches off and back to depression. Itís been a tough week, but I managed and did very well. I may have more days where my brain switches off, but itís OK I have my friends at SparkPeople. I also know that I have many more happy days than ďlights outĒ days. I canít tell you how much I am looking forward to Spring and walking in the sunshine. So, while I might stumble or even fall, this girl is not going backwards. The only direction for me is forward. Sunshine, happiness and health are my future.