Friday, April 21, 2017

Going Keto

After much contemplation and prayer, I have decided to try the Ketogenic diet.  I've realized a few things this past week 1. I simply can't lose weight without some sort of diet mentality.  Unless I have external factors forcing me to change the way I eat, I simply will not do it of my own will and volition alone.  I've been trying it for a year and a half and the only results I ever got were the two times I tried the Whole 30.  However, the Whole 30 is too expensive, and requires too much will power, work, planning and suffering for me to stick with it for the long term, and quite frankly for me I don't think the results are worth the effort.  For all that work I only lose 6 pounds a month.  For some that seems like a lot but seriously, I can lose six pounds a month through calorie restriction (when I'm focused like I have to be on Whole 30) and it's a lot cheaper, a lot less work and I don't have to give up some of my absolute favorites such as diet soda. 

So knowing that I need something, and knowing what I have tried: Paleo, Whole 30, Calorie restriction, Weight Watchers.  I don't really want to go back to any of the old methods, especially since I've been doing calorie restriction and unless I say "I'm on a diet, I can't eat that it has too many calories" I am not sticking with it.  And I'm not sure that's a mental place I want to be right now.  I have heard great things about the Keto diet, and it's been recommended to me by someone on this blog, by my chiropractor, and I have a good friend who is currently doing it and getting some great results.  I figure if I try it and I fail I know exactly what will happen:  I will binge like I always do after Whole 30 and then pretty much end up right back in the same boat that I'm in right now.  So there is no harm in trying.  And I'm going to give it a really good try.  My goal right now is to stick to it for six months.  (Thinking ahead that puts me at the beginning of November so when I get there the plan is to stick it out until January, but 6 months seems more manageable than 8 months for some reason, it's all mind games). 

Usually with diets, the longer I'm on them, the harder it is to keep going.  Theoretically this one is the opposite from what I've heard.  The longer you are on this one the easier it is supposed to get.  Unlike Whole 30, this one is meant to be a lifestyle that you stick with for the long term, adjusting to your needs as you go.  I figure if I can do the Whole 30 which is more restrictive in many ways, then I can stick this out.  There are many similarities between the two plans, but the Whole 30 doesn't allow you to recreate your favorite foods out of Whole 30 approved ingredients such as: bread, tortillas, desserts etc.  Whereas Keto doesn't really care how you eat the food, as long as you are getting the right ratios.  That is something I'm excited about.  There are Keto approved desserts and that makes me happy.  Another huge difference is that on Whole 30 you are not allowed any artificial sweeteners, whereas on Keto you are.  Stevia is pretty much the standard on Keto, but researching diet sodas it seems to be a gray area where it would be preferred for optimal health not to drink them, but if you feel like you are getting the results you want while drinking diet soda then no one seems to care much.  That was always the hardest part of Whole 30, I had to give up diet soda, and if I don't have to do that on Keto, it will go over much better.

So I've ordered some cookbooks on Amazon because I'm obsessed with cookbooks and my Chiropractor directed me to a sight called Drjockers.com  who has a lot of resources, and I've started listening to a keto podcast called "2 Keto dudes" which has been interesting and funny and informative.  I'm planning on starting the beginning of next month.  I need the time to figure everything out since it's a new diet and I will need to figure out my ratios and hit up the grocery store. 

Well that's all for now

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Rewiring my Brain

So almost immediately last week, I changed my strategy/plan, which as you know seems to be my style.  I set my calorie goal at 1900 but I really just hate how confining it is to try to adhere to a specific number.  And I don't care for keeping track of weekly calories.  So I did set my calorie goal in MFP at 1900 but in my mind I'm targeting 1700 and if I feel like I'm super hungry it's ok if I go over 1700 a bit, but trying to make 1900 the max.  So basically I set up a calorie range I'm trying to stay in.  1700-1900 where every day I'm targeting the lower end and only going higher if I feel like I'm hungry or occasion (like birthday parties, or Easter for example) warrant it. 

This morning I weighed in at 184.6!  Down 1.6 pounds.  So it worked really well this week.  It provided me with flexibility and took the oppressive restrictions of striving for a specific number away.  It is interesting that for the past few years I've had trouble sticking to a number weather that number is 1400 or 2000 calories.  I think this might actually work!  And guess what, I didn't feel very hungry last week at all.  There were a few times late at night when I felt a little hungry, but I figured I could eat in the morning and I didn't need a 9pm snack.  Other than that, it felt remarkably normal, which is all I've been asking for for years.  Something that feels normal.  I think this might be it, the way I can live permanently, and for the first time in a long time I'm optimistic and feeling excited. 

One other thing I'm doing is paying attention to my thoughts.  I'm a super negative thinker and I know how important it is to think positively.  All I've been able to think about every time I try to lose weight is how much I don't want to restrict my food and how hard it is and how much I really just don't want to do it and I wish I hadn't gained this weight back and blah blah blah.  Of course it turns into trash talk about myself and before long I'm stuffing my face with sweets to try and make myself feel better from myself.  So every time I catch myself thinking a negative or deconstructive thought, I immediately say exactly the opposite and repeat it to myself several times.  Such as:  "I really don't want to run today......... I really want to run today, I love running"   "I really wish I could eat that candy.......I don't want that candy, I'm stronger than the candy, it has no power over me and really I don't want that candy"   "I hate myself.......... I love myself"  
I think you get the picture.  It's really worked this week to keep my spirits higher and motivate me to get my exercise in and to stop eating so much junk.  Now, I still ate plenty of chips, and had a cookie at my grandpa's birthday party, and had a slice of cherry pie at Easter dinner last night with my in laws.  So it's really about being constructive and uplifting versus restrictive and forcing yourself into undesirable behaviors.  It's about tricking myself into doing the things that are good for me until I start believing the opposite of what I do now, namely that I like eating healthy, and I like exercising, and I like living a healthy lifestyle.  Which theoretically is something that should be true, and I think I can learn how to love it and it's good for me anyway.  So we will see where it leads. 

In other news.  Lily lost her first tooth yesterday!  So she got a visit from the Easter bunny and the tooth fairy last night!
  

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Realizations

So I learned this week that I cannot intuitively eat and expect to lose weight.  This week I thought I did a really good job of stopping eating when I was feeling like I was done eating instead of stuffing myself silly.  I made sure not to eat much in the way of sweets, and I felt good all week.  At some point in the week, I think it was Wednesday morning, I weighed 184 and was super psyched, I thought it was going to work after all.  But this morning I weighed in and I was 187.4.  Poo

So as much as I wish it might be so, I just can't lose weight unless I either count my calories or cut certain foods out of my diet.  I've been thinking a lot about what I did to lose all the weight the first time around.  Most of the weight I lost was on Weight Watchers.  What is different about weight watchers?  I figure it must be that they have restriction, but they allow a certain amount of weekly points you can spend.  So for the next week I'm going to set my calories at 1900 and allow myself 500 weekly calories I can spend how I would like and see how that affects things.  I figure I have plenty of time to mess around and see what might work as I've been trying unsuccessfully to lose weight for over a year now, so a few more weeks isn't going to make a difference.  Might as well find something that could possibly work for the long term. 

Now I know the calorie allotment seems high but, I know I have to be careful because I know me.  If I restrict too much it will backfire and I will be binging all my hard work away.  Also, I don't want to make any changes too dramatic that will be too hard to sustain.  If I can't eat only 1900 calories a day, there is no chance I will be able to eat 1700 calories a day.  Start smaller.  It will take longer, but I'm not too worried about that right now because I think I have finally accepted that I need to start where I am. 

Speaking of acceptance, I had an interesting thought today.  I'm the chorister in my church, meaning I conduct the music and as I was looking out over the congregation I was noticing how many different types of people there are.  We have a lot of children in our church too, and I looked at one family where the child was clinging to his mother.  It didn't matter to that child how much his mom weighed, or what her hair color was, or if her makeup was done.  He loved her regardless of all that.  And it really hit me: I don't have to be thin to be loved by my family.  Which begs the question "Do I need to lose weight to be happy?"  As I was pondering this and looking out over the various couples older than me, some thin, some heavy I wondered if in 20 years I will be in the same place I am now, and wondering if that would be ok.  I ultimately decided that no, it would not be ok with me.  I would be unhappy if I stayed between 180-190 for the rest of my life, but not because I wanted to be "beautiful" or have better "body image".  It was because at 186 I cannot do many of the things my family likes to do.  I can't go skiing at this weight, I can't go hiking very well, I can't run, I can't mountain bike, I can't chase my kids around the backyard very well.  I have been exercising and some people are saying that I'm looking better, so I'm sure there are some internal changes happening that are not reflecting on the scale.  But my quality of life, and the things that I long to do are kept from me at this weight.  I can do some of those things to an extent.  I can jog slowly, but it stinks and isn't all that enjoyable at the moment.  I remember being purely elated when trail running for the triathlon a few years ago.  I really can't go skiing.  If you have ever tried to go skiing while fat, I don't recommend it.  It's pure misery: legs burning, uncomfortable everywhere, getting tired just standing in the line to go up the mountain.  Nothing like the thrill I used to experience as the wind rushed past me as I raced down the mountain when I was 140 pounds.  Things that enriched my life and brought me joy, I simply cannot do at this higher weight.  Even things like chasing my kids around, wrestling with them, and playing with them are significantly harder.  I tire faster, and it's harder to force myself to do it at this weight whereas before I regained all the weight, it was easier because I was in better shape, had more energy and could move easier. 

So I will try again, and hopefully before the year is out I will find something I can really stick to.  Something healthy, personalized to just me, that doesn't cause me to binge.  Something to help me enrich my life instead of restrict my life.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Cleaning House

Yesterday I weighed in at 186.2 which is 2.4 pounds down from last week.  Not bad for the first week back.  It's always easier to lose weight the first week, so we will see what happens this week. 

I'm trying to focus on healthy habits instead of all the nitty gritty details of counting calories or following a specific program.  I've done all that before and it just causes me to stress out, and nothing ever sticks anyway.  By this time, I know what is healthy and what is not, I know how various foods affect me, and I know what I should be eating.  So I'm trying to make sure that I get at least two water bottles of water down a day, which is up from my usual zero.  Interestingly, I like drinking water in the evening more than at any other time of the day (unless I'm exercising.  I can usually get a whole water bottle down during my workout.) 

Today the kids had a snowday, so I did Zumba from home.  I'm working on cleaning out my house.  Matt's calling it our 5 year purge.  I read that book called "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying up." By Marie Kondo.  It's definitely what I needed to read before tackling the house.  I have gotten rid of so many things that were just cluttering up the house.  Many things I just needed someone to tell me it was ok to get rid of them.  Things that were useful but I never used.  It took 8 hours plus some miscellaneous item placement time just to clean out the closet in our bedroom.  The house is feeling much cleaner, and much more organized.  The only place that I can't seem to get the right feeling in is the kitchen and that is just because our kitchen is so incredibly small.  We have such limited counter space that it always feels cluttered.  I would like to pull some things off the counter, but I don't know where I would put them, as all the cabinets are full.  It really is a small kitchen, and one of the things I am looking the most forward to upgrading when we eventually move. 

I think that cleaning out the house is helping me mentally.  Giving me purpose, and leaving an uplifting and good spirit in the house.  I've been feeling better over the past month, especially when I spend time in the places that I've already cleaned.  I've also finished a few projects that had been left unfinished for years, such as my wedding scrapbook.  I finished that today and was able to toss everything else I didn't need, which was most everything in that giant bag.  That is one less thing to clutter up our house (the giant bag) and one more thing put in it's proper place.  The kids toy room is mostly finished.  I need to get one of those cubby shelves to organize all their toys.  That's the last really big project, and most of it is done.  After that there are a few odds and ends, but I hope to be done by the end of the month, which means I will have done my whole house in two months.  And that is pretty darn good. 


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

An unexpected Self Esteem Boost

The last few weeks have been pretty stressful.  Lily has been sick.  The poor girl was diagnosed with strep throat, and then had a fever the whole weekend and diagnosed with an ear infection the next Monday.  She also had a bad cough that my neighbor has termed "The Cough of Death" in which case she would cough so hard it would cause her to throw up.  Of course she had to give this cough to every member of the family.  I can only be thankful that no one got it as bad as she did.  Then her antibiotics were making her throw up if she didn't eat a large enough breakfast.  I'm glad we are officially done with her meds and we are on the mend! 

This morning I worked out to Turbo Fire.  Yesterday I also did Turbo Fire.  I really can't do all the high intensity moves, and I've noticed my body just naturally switches to the lower intensity versions, I don't even have to look at the girl on stage.  I just do what I can.  I can get through the program and that's pretty awesome even if I have to do lower intensity.  I've been working hard on accepting where I am now and trying to take baby steps.  I know that if I try to just jump into some sort of diet to lose weight quickly I will just end up back in the same old cycle.  So I'm hoping that if I can take smaller steps this time, I can make longer lasting changes.  I'm tracking in MFP, most of the time.  I've set my goal at 1700, but it syncs with my fitbit so I always get more activity calories.  What I'm trying to do is make it so that I don't go over my goal plus my activity calories. 

I enjoyed my workout today, and burned about 500 calories during my 47 minutes.  I think that is super important for continuing with any program.  If I hate it then there is no way I will continue doing it for the long term.

I had a friend come over today and she told me she was amazed at all the things I do in my spare time.  I have my flute stand and my cross stitch stand in the living room and my language books are in the TV stand, also in the living room.  It made me feel really good that she thought I was amazing.  I've never thought of myself as amazing before, I've always thought of myself as mediocre and falling short of where I would like to be.  It really made me feel good about myself. 

I thought I would put up a picture of my progress on my cross stitch project, which is Chloe's Christmas Stocking.  I wanted to get it done last year but that didn't happen.  So I really want to get it done this year, which is entirely possible, but I have to make it a priority. 
Well I think that's all for now so I will say:
Gute nacht. Ich kenne nicht Deutsch, aber Ich lerne Deutsch.

And if anyone who reads this speaks German you should totally correct anything wrong I say in the comments.  I thought it might be fun to put up a few sentences at the end of my posts.  My vocabulary is extremely limited right now so that should say "Good night.  I don't know German, but I'm learning German." 

Monday, March 27, 2017

Starting Over But Not Quite

It's been a long time.  I've thought of taking my blog down, but I just couldn't make myself do it.  Lately I have been thinking of writing again but I knew that if I started writing again, I didn't want to change my mind and then take it down anyway.  If I started writing again, I would have to commit, and I wasn't ready to do that until now. 

Part of the reason why it was so hard to commit is the fact that every month I would hope I was pregnant and every month I wouldn't be.  And so the cycle would start over.  At the beginning I would be gung ho about losing weight, and then in the middle/end I would start wondering if I were pregnant, and then hoping and then thinking that I shouldn't be trying to lose weight if I were going to be pregnant, and of course I never was.  And so on and so forth.  I never did receive an answer.  The OBGYN wouldn't see me since it hadn't been a year yet.  In hindsight I would have approached it from the point of: I'm experiencing these symptoms...... what is going on with my body?  Instead of: I can't get pregnant I think something is wrong.  My blood work pretty much revealed nothing.  Or rather, I should say, the doctors couldn't interpret anything based on my blood work and the answer they gave me was "your body went through some extreme trauma, and you should give yourself more time to heal and see if you get better."  So pretty much "I don't know what is wrong why don't you see if it goes away on its own."  And I'm sure you can imagine how that affected me.

I've been doing well with exercise since the beginning of the year, but my eating has been sub par.  I started the year at 191.6 and my lowest was 182.4.  Yesterday I was 188.6

Lily took the picture for me, standing on a chair.  I think she did a pretty good job.  I think my legs look thinner than they really are in this photo.  I'm actually thinner on top than on bottom, so I thought it was interesting how the picture came out. 

I'm doing a combo of exercise.  I want to sign up for some events to do to help keep me motivated.  I think it will help me stay motivated to actually have a goal in mind instead of just mindlessly exercising for pretty much the same goal as I've had for forever.  Trying to mix it up a bit.  Today was a busy day.  I'm doing the 10K trainer app by Zen Labs and I'm on week three meaning I'm "running" a total of 9 minutes during my one hour workout.  I was trying to run at 6mph, but that's too hard to sustain for three minutes so I had to drop it down to 5.5 and then 5.2.  I try not to think about how much I regressed.  My friend who works out with me keeps telling me to give myself a break and that I'm doing a good job and at least I did work out today and I have to start somewhere.  It's going to take a while and a lot of hard work to get back to where I was, and I just have to accept that and try to go forward from where I am now. 

The title of my post refers to the fact that I feel like I'm starting back at square one.  But I'm not all the way back at the beginning.  I started at 211 and now I'm 188 so I'm still 23 pounds lower than my highest weight. 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

limbo

 The good news is I haven't gained any weight. The bad news is I haven't lost any weight. According to my fit bit which monitors my heart rate all day I am burning a little over 3000 cal a day. I've been tracking my food over the past several days on my fitness pal just to see what my in take is and it's hovering around  2000 cal a day. Which means I have about a deficit of somewhere around 1000 cal a day so I should be losing weight like crazy. However I am not and you can imagine how frustrating that is. I did go into the doctor to get my thyroid checked but I have not heard the results back yet. I kind of feel like I am in limbo I don't really know what to do at this  moment. I am sure you can imagine how incredibly discouraging it is to have such a large calorie deficit but not to lose any weight. And I am not willing to go back to eating only 1200 to 1400 cal a day just to lose weight. Because I know that is something that I cannot maintain. Besides I would rather fix a health issue than  treat the symptoms . I signed back up for the gym because Chloe has been asking to go and I think it will be good for her, and my husband thinks it will be good for me and I am excited to go, but I have those doubts plaguing me right now and i find myself wondering "what's the point?"
Hopefully I will get some answers soon. I'm at my whitts end and am about to give up and just accept the fact that I am going to remain fat for the rest of my life. But I'm holding out until I get my blood work back. Until then, I will remain in Limbo