SHEL_V2's SparkPeople Blog SHEL_V2's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Trying to chill out with the scale already My first 3 weeks back to focusing on keto and cardio (and weight loss, of course) I kept a close watch on the scale. As someone who once worked as a process engineer (lots of data, testing, and adjusting to improve how things run), I chuckle at how I go about this habit. It can totally be a trap, but hell, I've given up sugar, bread, and caffeine, so can't I just have this? Well, no. Let's look at the data of my weekly weigh ins. <BR> <BR> <img src=" Sun, 23 Oct 2016 15:30:01 EST Two weeks of Intermittent Fasting (17/7) - down 4 lbs I was totally about to beat myself up. I didn't get as much exercise as I should (over-committed to some clients). I checked my weight yesterday, and I was actually up a little from last Friday. (It had been shark week, and I'd forgotten that the water weight was the last thing to go). But I weighed in today, and was down a total of 4 pounds for the last two weeks, and a bit less than 2 lbs from last Friday. Woo-hoo... <BR> <BR> My first week of IF I went for an entire change of habit. J... Fri, 27 Mar 2015 14:07:25 EST 2 years into low carb eating - adding a new trick My initial weight loss (over 30 lbs in about 6 months) tracked on Sparkpeople followed a low-fat, calorie-restricted diet. I tracked everything and exercised regularly. But I woke up one morning (after I'd bought one house, moved, staged and sold the old house) having let 15 pounds creep back on. I had not achieved any sort of maintenance. <BR> <BR> I had been introduced to the concepts and benefits of low carb, keto-adapted eating by very fit and lean friends. It seemed like a crazy idea,... Thu, 19 Mar 2015 17:58:21 EST Taming the Sweet Tooth, but the Taste Buds are Not Having It Funny that my last blog post was about sweet things in the low carb way of eating. I recently noticed I was having the kind of hunger pangs the old Snicker's ads used to celebrate "it's poking at ya, poking at ya". When I started eating low carb, those went away. Conditioning is a powerful thing; my taste buds craving for more sweet, all the time brought them back! <BR> <BR> Diet sodas became a regular purchase. I was adding more sweeteners to my tea, making more sweet treats. And gaini... Wed, 4 Jun 2014 17:02:51 EST Low Carb Eats #5 - A little sweet without sugar Before low carb, my morning started with a hot cup of strong black tea, with milk and sugar. In my low-fat vegetarian experience, I'd made adjustments to reduce the calories, but nothing was a suitable substitute for the 2% milk. Thanks to tracking on SparkPeople, I'd confronted the reality that I was getting up to 400 calories a day from my multiple cups of sweetened tea. <BR> <BR> When I adapted to low carb, I had to cut out the sugar. I focused on really enjoying non-sweet foods for t... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 14:33:59 EST Low Carb Eats #4 - Enjoy your cheese I've been on the "flexitarian" spectrum for over 20 years. No land meats, but I've been on and off with fish. When eating a low-carb diet, that means that cheese = joy. <BR> <BR> While cheeses are generally low-carb, it is still a good idea to read the labels. Even better to go to the SELF Nutrition Data tool to see how many grams of carbs turn up when you select the largest portion size given, so you can spot the cheeses that have 2x - 4x the carbs of others. This doesn't make them fo... Thu, 9 Jan 2014 17:47:34 EST Low Carb Eats #3 - Good times with salads Part of my low carb experience has been adapting 20 years of more plant-based experience to living without grains and without most meats. I went many years eating fish only occasionally, but it is currently a regular part of my diet. It is otherwise challenging to keep carbs low enough without resorting constantly to processed protein powders. <BR> <BR> One excellent resource for a keto adapted / low carb high fat diet is "The Art and Science of Low Carb Living", written by two of the auth... Fri, 13 Dec 2013 17:14:05 EST Low Carb Eats #2 - You need pizza I had a #2 blog on Low Carb done last week (on cheeses), but when I went to post it gave me a snippy "No HTML" message and my blog went poof. I have to go look up the cheese data again, but I'm done pouting, so I'm ready to talk pizza. <BR> <BR> So many people say they can't imagine eating low carb because they'd have to give up ... a long list of yummy stuff. It is really hard to start from that mindset, certainly. I started thinking about enjoying lots of cheese and olives and pickles a... Mon, 2 Dec 2013 23:00:48 EST Low Carb Eats #1 - The Hard Boiled Egg Long before I discovered low carb living, deviled eggs were my standard pot-luck dish. Always appreciated, and no leftovers to cart home. Ever. Only making them a few times a year, peeling was always tedious. <BR> <BR> Eating low carb, having peeled hard boiled eggs on hand is just a given. In seconds I can have one sliced, salted, and ready to eat or pack. They transform salads into a meal. They keep me from eating crap. <BR> <BR> Once I started eating low carb, I was making small ... Fri, 22 Nov 2013 14:47:22 EST The elusive goal - a goal weight I'm noticing a common theme among some friends who are, like me, in the home stretch toward our goal, 50 or more pounds lost, and middle aged (gee... it's like SparkPeople has a group for that or something). <BR> <BR> As we hit another fall, as we cope with the monotony of our new routines, and waiting to be "done", we keep asking "why that goal?". I was warmed to find I was not alone in picking "middle of my BMI range", but that still isn't very satisfying. I think the truth is, I don't... Tue, 22 Oct 2013 18:45:11 EST Age is just a number. Why does weight drive us crazy? Read a great blog entry this morning that had been edited because the Sparker put her current weight about 10 lbs higher than she'd just weighed in at. I totally relate. Sometimes I'm back on the scale in 30 seconds because that number was so alien, it didn't stick in my brain. <BR> <BR> It doesn't help that I've been every weight between 165 lbs and 200 in the last few years. TWICE. Once the scale hit 200, all other weights were just inevitable, and they were me. Anything below 200 was... Tue, 1 Oct 2013 15:41:26 EST 50 lbs gone... finally! Now for the real work It's been a long trip, self inflicted wandering off course included. But after about 2 years and 9 months, and four fresh starts, I've lost 50 lbs. The graph doesn't show the 207 mark, but that was my peak just before starting SparkPeople. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I lost about 33 lbs following a low fat vegetarian diet, exercising, and tracking my food. And then, I took a little break. The first few months were fine, but th... Mon, 30 Sep 2013 20:07:26 EST Lost 1 lb of me, another 1.6 lb of scale* I got a new scale this week, an Ozeri that also uses impedance to check body fat. I'm not sure how flakey that measurement is, so I won't dwell. The number it's currently reporting can't be right, frankly. I'm well above 23%, for sure! <BR> <BR> My weight on my old scale was 159.0. That's a pound down from last week. My weight on the new scale was 157.4. The balance beam scale at the gym has consistently shown a lower weight, so I can tell myself this new one is more accurate, right? <... Sun, 18 Aug 2013 13:29:37 EST Taking a half where you can So far I've only taken off 1/2 lb this month. I keep my carbs low, but I'm still eating plenty of calories. A diet buddy pushed me to get out of my workout rut (on the elliptical like a hamster in a wheel) but I think I need my ruts. I feel good about holding steady. <BR> <BR> I had one day where I'd had enough sweetened products (too many with malitol) and experienced both gas, and total munchies the next day. My fix for everything in low carb is cheese and pickles. It was helpful to s... Sat, 17 Aug 2013 20:17:14 EST Wait, those were the skinny clothes I have (to me) the good fortune of working from home and getting to wear whatever I want most of the time. I worked in an office most of my adult life, so I've had the boring black pants and skirts in every size from 12 to 18 W. More than once. As I've lost weight, I mostly stock up on jeans or shorts (depending on the season) and T-shirts. For the office clothes, I've gone back to my "archive" of other sizes. <BR> <BR> Last week I was checking to see what I still had that fit to go see ... Mon, 22 Jul 2013 17:41:35 EST The things Google finds... on Sparkpeople? <link><BR>food=Yogurt-Land+No+Sugar+Added+Yogurt<BR>+French+Vanilla </link> <BR> <BR> Can someone explain this? I couldn't find Yogurtland Vanilla No-Sugar added in the Nutrition tracker, so I went to Google it up. I saw a Sparkpeople link, and this almost seems as bad some of the things that are randomly generated to try to get ad revenue. Is this for fro-yo, for french fries, or just for the ad revenue? <BR> <BR> Oh well, back to looking. In the ... Sun, 21 Jul 2013 23:44:04 EST The Oatmeal on running, if you dare The Oatmeal creates comics (illustrated stories) that are opinionated, profane, and funny. He's done great funny riffs on sriracha, relationships, mantis shrimp, and funny and painful tales of say, how his house burned to the ground when he was a kid, taking his mother's business and all their cats with it. <BR> <BR> Just trying to warn you what you'll find if you check out his latest, a very personal story about fitness, vanity, and overcoming that little voice in your head: <BR> <BR> <... Wed, 17 Jul 2013 17:55:27 EST The vacation after the vacation Loved my vacation so much that it took a few days to even crack open the luggage and start the laundry (which overflowed the plumbing, backed up the sink, required plumber intervention). I've been staying up just a little late, and sleeping in a lot. <BR> <BR> Which has resulted in a little omission. I STILL haven't done a real cardio work out, a week after getting home. I've walked the dogs, and yesterday I spent 90 minutes working up a sweat scrubbing floors. I tracked my food, and my ... Sun, 7 Jul 2013 18:26:37 EST I'm taking my scale on vacation Discuss. <BR> <BR> I guess that would be just too cheesy of a blog entry, prompting everyone else to chime in with providing my rationale. I've had another recent discovery of "duh", some of the most repeated advice (in this case, low-carb specific advice) works. <BR> <BR> My recent insight was that I was not losing and it seemed like I was retaining water. My pants (that fit) left marks around my waist. My socks (which I rarely wear) left marks around my ankles. My flipflops rubbed a... Fri, 21 Jun 2013 01:30:36 EST Tweaking and peeking Many, many times we encounter the advice about what to do if the scale isn't budging. Which is good, because ya never know when you need to see the information again. Last week I ate fewer calories (I'd been at the top of and over my range in the previous weeks, and lost), worked out the same. And gained 1.5 lb! <BR> <BR> So back to the basics this week. No sugar alcohols (I'd had a few very lovely bits of low carb chocolate last week). Net carbs back to 35g, from 40g. Late in the week,... Fri, 14 Jun 2013 18:35:40 EST Making the Nutrition Tracker Low Carb I spent a long time (and lost 33 pounds) tracking my low fat vegetarian diet. Tracking = information. It helped me to make adjustments, to figure out which meals were winners, and to make the behavioral changes required to keep losing, and ultimately, to maintain. <BR> <BR> And then, I just couldn't stand to do it any more. So I tried something totally different, commonly referred to as low carb or keto-adaptation. I reduced my daily carbs from the 100's of grams to a net (after subtract... Tue, 4 Jun 2013 23:36:45 EST All hail the low carb tortilla 10 years ago, or whenever there seemed to be an explosion in low carb foods, I encountered a display of low carb tortillas in my grocery store. And I proclaimed our days as a great society were numbered. Doof! If you want to avoid carbs, eat something other than tortillas! Duh! <BR> <BR> Of course, I weighed over 200 pounds then. I didn't buy anything sugar free or low fat or low carb. I was at least eating "real" food. And I kept that up into my weight loss with SparkPeople. I was d... Sun, 2 Jun 2013 23:41:23 EST Body by Intention - Finding my "me" weight Today I've matched the lowest weight I've known in the past 20 years or so. Which is really saying something, because I'm 46. My high weight as a working professional who often got 3 meals a day out and no exercise was 230 lbs. Today after 13 months of Sparking (with a 3 month pause and a 2 month screw up) I'm 165. And I earned it, and I know what it takes to get here from both sides. Being 230 certainly wasn't my "me" weight, not where I intended to be, not a body I related to, cared f... Sun, 26 May 2013 13:50:43 EST Shopping for clothes and "unmentionables" I just got back from Old Navy and summer is on. If I didn't know they were giving us what we want with size inflation, I would have wept tears of joy when I zipped up those size 10 skinny jeans. Size 10 shorts worked, too, and a pair of men's khakis with a 32" waist. Two medium shirts, also. <BR> <BR> I'm 5'9", and as I started this weight loss trip I just didn't have a preconceived idea of what size I was headed for. And they've shifted so much in recent years, especially in women's c... Mon, 20 May 2013 18:44:04 EST The picture tells the story Last year's bathing suit, meet this year's bathing suit. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Sun, 19 May 2013 23:53:24 EST "Best of" Albums for cardio For most of the last year, I watched TV when I worked out. I don't watch much at home, and either Survivor Man or How it's Made kept me going. I upgraded my phone and started working out in the mornings, so I figured music on the phone would keep me going. <BR> <BR> I've settled on a strategy of buying "best of albums". I'm too lazy to buy separate tracks. The idea of work out mixes leave me cold; I'd rather have the real song, with tempo changes, pauses and all. I grew up in the 80's, ... Wed, 15 May 2013 17:10:06 EST Everything moved! Plus a tracker trick to stop being the "clean plate club" I'm now a month into eating very low carb. I haven't had more than 33 g net carbs (total - fiber) in a day, while getting 65 - 80% of my calories from fat. Most of the carbs are from veggies, none are from grains. <BR> <BR> While I was never diagnosed with metabolic syndrome, it is likely I met the criteria back when a started losing weight on a low fat, vegetarian, high carbohydrate diet. The researchers in nutritional ketosis (deriving the energy from dietary and body fat) emphasize tha... Sun, 12 May 2013 16:34:07 EST On tucking in and other fashion statements With not much control over my weight throughout my life, and not a huge degree of fashion sense, I've just not bothered to have belts, and I've just not been in the habit of tucking in my shirt. That little bit of "curtain" sure seems to keep tummy shape and my unfashionable waistband height a little bit of a mystery. <BR> <BR> I went out in public on Saturday with a long sleeve knit top tucked into low-rise (ish) jeans. And a belt. First time in... geeze... I really don't know. And this... Mon, 6 May 2013 10:29:18 EST RTFM, might be good advice in there! So almost 2 weeks into my low carb adventure, I got far enough into the New Atkins to find that if you're doing this without meat, they recommend starting with more carbs. <BR> <BR> 30g isn't that much more than 20g when compared to a typical day before this change, but it means I'm not so constrained. My daily average had been about 25 grams, so I'm doing great instead of not-so. <BR> <BR> I lost 9 pounds very quickly (the water used in processing and storing carbs) and it's been slow s... Fri, 26 Apr 2013 18:07:55 EST Low carb U-turn, sketchy part of town for a plant-eater I lost 30 lbs last year eating mostly vegan, low fat, lots of veggies and carbs. Almost zero cholesterol, for months on end. So how on earth did I find myself cooking spinach in coconut oil? For dinner tonight I had an entire avocado, and an ounce of colby cheese, wrapped in tofurky deli slices. I'm putting a sprinkle of salt in my iced tea and in the water bottle I take to the gym. I'm in no danger of wolfing down bacon any time soon, but I've plunged into low carb eating. <BR> <BR> I t... Fri, 19 Apr 2013 00:03:43 EST Learn, then lose Interesting article today, the upshot is that two groups went through identical diet support, but the group who essentially learned maintenance habits BEFORE the diet was more successful at keeping off the weight after 12 months. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ow-how-to-keep-weight-off-before-you-l<BR>ose-it/?hpt=hp_t3 </link> <BR> <BR> Looks like some great rationale for my "maintenance in the middle" phase. I haven't been tracking, just trying to eat decently... Tue, 30 Oct 2012 23:42:58 EST Handy taco seasoning This is one of the first useful things I ever encountered here at Sparkpeople, almost two years ago: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>l.asp?recipe=700196 </link> <BR> <BR> I promptly refilled a half empty chili powder bottle with the mixture (and no red pepper flakes) and it has been my go-to seasoning ever since. The simplicity, and the low sodium make a great choice. I make tacos using Boca or Morningstar Farms crumbles, and this adds a lot of mildly spicy fla... Tue, 23 Oct 2012 15:18:00 EST Not tracking and how it's going This past week I didn't track my calories at all. I attribute my success with SparkPeople to the Tracker, but things are chaotic and busy, and I just needed to get on with it. I intend to go back to tracking either 1) immediately if there is a problem or 2) in about a month when the big chaos softens up. <BR> <BR> I had intended to track my freggies, but I didn't do a great job of that (either eating them or tracking them). I feel better when I eat more of them, so I will work on that a b... Sat, 13 Oct 2012 15:29:53 EST This week's calories and here's why... Since April I've had good, consistent weight loss. To a great extent, I credit that to tracking my food and using the results to make better choices - satisfying, nutritionally sound, and not "diet food". <BR> <BR> I have the luxury of working from home, and that makes all the difference; I can get to the grocery store, I can cook lunch, I don't need to plan everything the night before (and more power to those who do!). But two things are going on right now... I'm just done with having to ... Sat, 6 Oct 2012 11:48:23 EST This week's calories and stress I did not have toast for breakfast every day this week. I mixed it up, whole wheat english muffin toasted, whole wheat bread toasted. At least it wasn't sourdough. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I skipped tracking one day, although I ate within plan, guaranteed. Still not enough fruits and veggies. Crazy stress going on; going to be moving in a month. Bright light at the end of the tunnel? The new house has fruit trees out the w... Fri, 28 Sep 2012 23:08:22 EST This week's calories, and problem solving I did a better job with my freggies this week, but it was mostly fruit. I still haven't solved my "bored with my veggies" problem, but I did have a baked potato slathered with broccoli and salsa. I'll work that into my lunch on a regular basis. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> This week I had toast for breakfast every day again. It really is my prime comfort food. This week the bread was a whole wheat pane, but it is high in sodium.... Sat, 22 Sep 2012 00:23:43 EST This week's calories, and the blahs It was SO hard to get my freggies this week. I indulged in my true staple food, San Luis Sourdough. Very happy toasted. I start my day with that, and nothing else tastes like a good idea. I stayed within calorie and nutrient ranges, but it... was... hard! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I need to look to mix it up this week, find some new lunch options now that I've apparently had my fill of cauliflower, spinach, and cucumbers. Fri, 14 Sep 2012 23:50:11 EST A real goal, or a happy milestone? I'm not one for lots of goals. For one, I'd stress and stress that I would forget to confirm and reward, and then I'd still forget to do it. <BR> <BR> But I realized I have a "goal" that I'm looking forward to. This here, is my current driver's license photo. It's about 8 years old. And it isn't particularly bad, as far as these things go... <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> But I weighed well over 200 lbs (NOT that I admitted that ... Wed, 12 Sep 2012 15:36:41 EST 0-1 Calories remaining to eat today I didn't set out to just squeak by. I was sure I'd be over, and was just trying to contain the damage! Isn't that great? <BR> <BR> <em>224</em> <BR> <BR> Right before I made dinner, a neighbor turned up with a feast of cheese enchiladas, rice, re-fried beans, and desserts as a get well wish for my hubby. I decided not to get too worked up about making sure it fit within my limit today, and just enjoy. I had to consciously stop myself from cleaning my plate, I left an enchilada behin... Mon, 10 Sep 2012 22:42:37 EST This week's calories, and the end of day filler This week life was more settled. With hubby off work while he heals up, I even get to sleep in. I found I was having a hard time getting out of the toast for breakfast rut, so I added a mid-morning smoothie with a ton of spinach, whatever other fruit, and some PureGreen protein powder. It sure got my freggie count up. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I have enough calories "open" tonight to have a coconut milk ice cream sandwich, but... Fri, 7 Sep 2012 23:57:26 EST This week's calories and hospital food My husband was sick and then in the hospital this past week, so there was lots of shuttling around. It was also the first week back at school for our son, so just about all I could handle. Hubby is home now, thankfully. <BR> <BR> The days where I didn't meet my fiber quotient tell the story. Not enough fruits and veggies. I didn't make my usual cauliflower dish, that gets plenty of veggie servings slipped into my lunch. Nice to have one thing to fix, and not figure it's all blown. <BR> ... Sat, 1 Sep 2012 11:55:09 EST Keeping on track despite a little life excursion This week, I tracked all my meals, I got my 3x 45 minutes of cardio, my basic strength training, drank my water, and mostly hit my nutrient and calorie marks. Which isn't remarkable, because I've done that consistently since April 15th. <BR> <BR> But here's the big achievement. I've done this while my husband has been in the hospital with a staph infection, with MRSA not ruled out until yesterday. He went in with a 105 fever and a scary red rash (cellulitis) spreading from a skin injury. ... Thu, 30 Aug 2012 23:30:58 EST This week's calories, and packing okay junk Today I had dinner while waiting around at Kaiser's urgent care for my husband to be seen and treated. Poor guy's been on a roll lately: ruptured Achilles, head cold, and today high fever and an infection where his cast has been rubbing his knee raw. I packed snacks for dinner for our son and for me in about a minute. And I still hit all the nutrients for the day. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Sodium was still high a few days, bu... Sat, 25 Aug 2012 01:15:39 EST Oh that crazy Food Tracker search tool Vegenaise is the best vegan mayo-like substance, and I say that as someone who would lick the spoon when I dolloped out BestFoods mayo. Searching for it (and some of the other tasty Vegenaise products) always yields this helpful advice: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Once I find my food, I do save it to the Favorites. The garlic dressing is a nice substitute for a Caesar salad, by the way! Sun, 19 Aug 2012 23:10:56 EST This week's calories, and unintended consequences This is my 3rd week of sharing my calorie and nutrition totals. I've been having a vegan protein drink for a snack every day, and that makes it much easier to meet my protein needs. I think it also frees up calories for some less healthy choices. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I paste the numbers into a simple spreadsheet, and I can see that my averages are similar to the week before. I was, however higher for protein (my PureGree... Fri, 17 Aug 2012 23:55:53 EST A little love for Richard Simmons <link><BR>ough-thick-and-thin-simmons-still-sweatin </link> <BR> <BR> I've never bought his videos, diet cards, etc (because I haven't bought them from anyone) but I've always found him outrageously charming. Years, and years ago I heard him say on a talk show that an anonymous note on his car spurred his weight loss. He was 19, an art student in Italy with a side career as a commercial actor, and he weighed 268 pounds. I just looked it up... he told... Tue, 14 Aug 2012 18:32:07 EST This week's calories, and dining out with fractions This is my 2nd week of sharing the calorie and nutrient totals. I was within calories every day. This isn't that hard, I was able to make due with 1200 - 1550 for over 3 months when I was working for a 2 lb/week loss. After losing 20 lbs my BMI is merely "overweight" and my armpits were looking saggy. Ewww. Now I'm set to 1 lb/week. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I really wanted to go out to dinner tonight, and Islands is a fami... Fri, 10 Aug 2012 23:37:42 EST This week's calories Thanks to MeltedGlass for the great idea. I'm posting my calorie shot too. Today, I went over for fat, which rarely happens. I only got 5 servings of fruits and veggies, I try to get at least 7. I went to a movie before lunch, went out to lunch, and had dinner out also. One food choice is what bunged my day. Any guesses? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Fri, 3 Aug 2012 23:26:33 EST Doing good when I've gone over I never went through the phase of tracking how I had been eating when I started with SparkPeople. I don't want to see it, I don't want to know, clean slate, and don't I do nice homework? <BR> <BR> <em>43</em> <BR> <BR> Simply committing to track calories has been very powerful for me, and has eliminated distracted snacking. So that was easy. It took two tries at SparkPeople, plus a few months of focus to build up meal and snack choices that make staying on target easy. I just love tota... Tue, 31 Jul 2012 19:20:24 EST The Secrets of Success - short attention span fun! Checked this out today, and it is a great opportunity to see lots of great ideas. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ss.asp </link> <BR> <BR> Click "This Sparked Me" to give an item your thumbs up. Fri, 27 Jul 2012 19:33:42 EST