A Year of Maintenance

This has been quite a year. I have maintained a 50 pound weight loss within 5 pounds. And a 70 pound weight loss since my very highest. Exactly one year ago, I weighed 149.6.  That lasted for a nano second and I think it was a fluke.   I decided that I wanted to maintain that weight for one year and see how I would feel. It is one year later and I am up 5 pounds.  Maintenance is a bitch.

In my past years I would have been devastated by a 5 pound “gain”. I would have thrown in the towel. I would have gone back to my old ways of eating. I would have said “this is just not working for me” and dove into a pizza – and it would be an Imo’s Supreme.  I would have avoided being around people in fear that they would look at me and say “she’s putting her weight back on.” “I knew she couldn’t do it”. “Once a fatty, always a fatty”.  “Fatty, fatty, two by four.” And the list of sayings goes on.

But today, I have a new outlook on “maintenance”. I have allowed myself to have a window of 5 pounds to play with. It gives me a sense of freedom without a fear of gaining everything back. I will admit when I hit my goal weight, I was scared. My main thought was how can I maintain this weight? How can I go through life without eating some of my favorite foods? Do I have to give up bread forever? What about popcorn – I love popcorn. Wine – oh – wine. How can I give you up? Ice cream – Ted Drews – Abbaca Mocha concrete will I ever see you again? Pasta, cookies, sweets, baked potatoes loaded with butter and the list goes on.

So one year ago, I made the decision that I wanted to stay “thin” forever. Ok not thin – just normal and slightly on the higher BMI side. According to the weight chart, I am still above normal. Maybe even fat.  I decided that if I lost more weight that would be great but maintaining was more important to me. So to stay “thin” I needed to make a decision what foods would keep me the healthiest and would serve my body the best.  But first, I needed to decide what foods were non-negotiable.

Here are my non-negotiable items. I love popcorn. But I have found that I cannot eat popcorn everyday. When I eat popcorn I can not eat just two cups for 110 calories. That is like eating two handfuls. I love to eat a bowl of popcorn. And a large bowl.  That makes eating popcorn worthwhile. So I eat popcorn on an average of once a month.    And my beloved wine.  This is definitely non-negotiable. I love my wine and I enjoy coming home from work and sitting down before dinner and having one or two glasses of this delectable nectar.  I have become an amateur wine maker which makes drinking wine even more pleasurable.

Pasta has been replaced by spaghetti squash.  Pizza crust has been replaced with cauliflower crust – delicious!.  Wheat is pretty much a thing of the past.  Sugar is a definite no, no.  Snacks have been replaced with Sugar Snap Peas, which I could eat all day long.   My go to snack every day is plain Greek Yogurt sprinkled with a bit of Crystal Light.  And sometimes I will add some berries.  And I do end most days with a 30 calorie no sugar popsicle.  It is such a treat.

Let’s talk bread.  I don’t eat bread.  I decided that this was very easy to give up.  However, on occasions I will indulge in a 6″ Subway Club.  That sandwich is delicious but I choose not to eat it all the time.  But here is the dilemma.  My son has become a bread maker and his pics on Instagram and Facebook have been making my mouth water.  He has perfected his breads to the point he could sell them commercially.  And shouldn’t I support him in his new endeavor?  So I have decided that one day soon I will have a slice of his bread.  I may even put butter on it.  And this is ok.  Because I will only have it on special occasions.  Thank God he lives an hour away.

My outlook one year into maintenance is not what I had to give up to stabilize my weight.  It is more about what foods will empower my body. It is more about making a choice to eat foods that make me healthy.  I am off of my cholesterol and high blood pressure medicine.   I feel great.  I look a whole lot better.  I like fitting into smaller off the rack clothes.  Yes I have “gained” five pounds, thank you very much to my beloved scale.  But that is ok because I know those five pounds will eventually leave me.  I am confident that I will be “thin” (ok not thin – just smaller), for the rest of my life.

Maintenance is really not a bitch.  It is just a life long journey.

Hail Mary

I am not a very religious person.  Actually I am not religious at all.  I can’t remember the last time I went to church.  And I am not planning on going any time soon.  But I can say that I am a spiritual person.  I pray every night as I lay down to go to sleep.  I thank God for all he has given me and for keeping my family safe for another day.  When I can’t sleep at night, I will pray the rosary.  I usually fall asleep after the first few Hail Marys.  Never getting to the Our Father.

I have found when I am working out at Gold’s Gym saying a Hail Mary is mentally easier than counting to 10, 15 or 20 reps.  That is what my trainer is there for. She counts. I pray.   When I am in the zone, I let my mind escape by reciting the Hail Mary.  It takes me 13 seconds to comfortably recite the prayer.  I can say a lot of prayers during my work out.  It is mentally very soothing.

I have been working out with my trainer since September.  I absolutely love her.  Chantille is so kind but relentless.  What I love about her is that she sees my weaknesses and will work on them.  Currently my shoulder movement is very limited.  I broke my shoulder years ago and my arms just don’t want to go back.  So every training session we do a set of shoulder presses to strengthen my shoulders.  Slowly my flexibility is returning.

Another weakness of mine is step ups.  I know you all know what I am talking about.  If you have been to a basketball game or football game one needs to step up onto risers to get to their seat.  I did not want to be that person that has to watch a basketball game sitting on the first riser because I could not step up any higher.  So Chantille has me hold a kettle bell in each hand and has me step up on the step up stool for at least a whole rosary.  Actually it is 20 reps – 3 times – but it seems to take forever.  So one day I thought if I go a little faster I would get over this awful exercise quicker.  It did not work.  My foot caught on the edge of the stool and down I went – kettle bells and all.  I have learned that fast prayers do not work – just like fast work outs do not work.  Slow and steady is the best means to the end.

There is something to the adage The Power of Prayer.  I truly believe in it. I pray hard during my workouts.  I pray to pass the time and I pray that I won’t die during my workout.  So far my prayers have been answered.  I am getting stronger.  And I am still alive.  I actually have muscle tone in my arms.  My body is being reshaped.  Keep in mind that I do have saggy baggy elephant skin from the weight loss but underneath those flaps of skin is muscle.  I love it!

So I will continue with my prayers and my workouts.  I don’t want these last months to be that Hail Mary pass – like a touchdown pass in a  football game.  I want to continue strong and steady.  I will never be a power lifter or a body muscle model but I know for sure that I will be able to climb up the risers comfortably to be able to watch my grandsons play football and basketball.  I will be able to lift my camera bag without my back not going out on me.  I will be able to walk/run at a decent clip and not be totally winded.  I will be able to get down on the ground during a photo shoot and be able to get back up.  I am just looking for simple strength.

Now I wonder what I would be able to accomplish if I started to pray the Our Father.

 

Conquering Fear

I am a bit of a scaredy cat.  Sometimes I am afraid to try new things.  I am more comfortable looking from a far.  I have a tendency to stare at people.  I am convinced it is because I am so enthralled as to what they are doing.  And I wish I could do what they are doing.  When I go to Gold’s Gym I catch myself staring at people doing weight lifting.  I am amazed as to how easy they make it look.  I love to watch through the window at the women doing the classes.  And I found myself wishing I could do one of the classes.

I have been a member of Gold’s Gym for three weeks.  I have a trainer who I absolutely love – Chantille Anderson – and works my butt off.  Before I joined I longed to use one of those weight lifting machines but I was too afraid to try.  I did not know how they worked and was afraid that I would hurt myself.  But every training session I have, I am getting more and more comfortable with the machines.  Chantille makes sure that I do not hurt myself.  And she pushes me to exhaustion which I love.  I am by no means an expert on any of these machines but at least I am overcoming my fear of them.

The other day, I found myself looking through the door of a Spinning Class.  It looked so hard.  It looked much harder than leisurely riding my bike on a Sunday afternoon.  Chantille on a couple of sessions had me train for a few minutes on the spinning bike.  I thought I would die.  And I felt I would never be able to do a spinning class.  But the other day I saw a woman my age on the spinning bike.  She made it look pretty easy and I thought if she can do it, certainly I can.  So this morning I gathered up my courage and went to my first spinning class.

Last night I woke  up worrying about the class.  Would I be able to keep up?  What if I fell off of the bike?  What if I was the biggest or oldest?  What if – what if – what if.  This morning I kept thinking I could just not go to the class and go for my usual daily walk.  But then I knew I would be disappointed with myself for not trying.  So I gathered up my courage, went to Gold’s Gym early and walked into the spinning class.  I introduced myself to the instructor and told her I was new.  She was so nice.  She showed me how to adjust the bike to my height and how to adjust the intensity control.  She introduced me to other spinners who were so nice.  They said to just go at your own pace.  I couldn’t believe it.  I have been wanting to do this for years but was always too afraid to.  There was absolutely nothing to fear.

The teacher then turned the lights off and put the fluorescent lights on.  She cranked the music up and started the class.  I found myself keeping up with the other spinners.  I even cranked up the intensity so I could stand and spin.  I have always been so afraid to do that.  I started to look at the other women in the class and I fit right in.  I was not the heaviest.  I was not the oldest.  For once I felt normal.  Like I belonged.  It was a great feeling.

Wasn’t it FDR that said the famous saying.  “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”  I have been thinking about that quote a lot lately.  My new goal in my weight loss journey (actually it is now my maintenance journey) is conquering my fears.  I am tired of being afraid.  I want to try new things.  Now I will never bungee jump or parachute out of an airplane.  I value my life too much. But using weight lifting machines and spinning on a bike is definitely the first step in the right direction.

Gold’s Gym

I am happy to announce that I am a new (for the third time) member of Fenton’s Gold’s Gym.  I have been contemplating rejoining Gold’s for quite a while.  And with my achilles tendon bone spur still not healed, many outdoor activities needed to be put on hold.  I also love to swim and Gold’s Gym has a wonderful lap pool.  So I joined.  And because my husband and I do everything together, I joined him up too.

A word of warning if you want to join.  There is no paper work that you can look at while they explain the program to you.  And they talk fast.  And everyone says something different.  I talked to 3 people and got 3 different answers.  I received a card in the mail about a no enrollment fee.  That sounded like a good deal.  But in reality, what they did was charged me no enrollment fee but charged more for my bi-weekly fee.  So it actually cost more to come in on their advertised deal.  And I did not notice it.  My husband caught it when we received the paper work 2 days later.  This is my only complaint about Gold’s Gym.  I really wish that they had some sort of paper work in front of you so one can make an educated decision on what plan to join.

But that being said – I absolutely love Gold’s Gym.  They have amazing equipment.  Treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, stair masters, Jacobs ladder, every free weight imaginable and a ton of weight machines.  A basketball court, a cinema with treadmills (no popcorn or candy is offered in the cinema), a workout room for FREE classes, a spinning room and a beautiful lap pool.  Also a hot tub and a sauna.  And the dressing rooms are huge, equipped with wonderful showers.  And the place is CLEAN!  What more could one ask for?

OVERWHELMED.  When I walked in and saw all of the equipment, it was so overwhelming.  Where does one start?  Which machine should I hop on?  And better yet – how do I work the machine?  The last 2 times I was a member all I ever used was the pool and the treadmill.  This time I wanted to be more adventuresome.  So I decided to get a trainer. Her name is Chantille Anderson.  I LOVE HER!!!!  And wouldn’t you know it – she graduated from Webster Groves High School where all of our children went.  It is such a small world.

Chantille has introduced me to a lot of the equipment and machines.  And she works my butt off (literally) every time we meet.  She sees my weaknesses and strengths.  Every time I meet with her, I feel like I am getting stronger.  And she makes me sweat.  I love sweating. I love that sore feeling after a good work out. She has me using equipment that I was always too intimated to try.  She is patient with me when I just don’t get it.  And pushes me when I need pushing.  And she doesn’t yell at me like the trainers in the Biggest Loser.

So if anyone is interested in joining Gold’s Gym, I highly recommend it.  Gold’s is very reasonable for all that it offers.  My only word of warning is, take good notes when the sales rep talks to you.  And ask questions.  It also wouldn’t hurt to ask for something in writing before they charge your credit card.  You are getting a lot for your money.  But educated decisions are always the best decision.  And ask for Chantille.  She is amazing!

Break Ups Are Hard

I have broken up with Weight Watchers.  I hate break ups. They make me sad.   But it is time for me to move on.  Weight Watchers was a great tool for me for 22 months.  It helped me learn portion control, good foods/bad foods.  The bad thing is that I was always hungry and always thinking about food.

I am a firm believer that if something is not working for you – or even if you feel like something is not working for you – than it may be worth trying something new.  So in my weight loss journey I mainly stuck with Weight Watchers.  I diligently recorded everything I ate.  I counted my points and recorded them on the Weight Watcher on-line e-tools.  I soon realized  that the Weight Watcher e-tools was not user friendly.  And everything that you recorded was deleted after 2 months.  Through my frustration with Weight Watcher e-tools I found a very friendly ap that is FREE.  My Fitness Pal.  I plug my foods in that I eat and it records my calories.  My activities are also recorded through my Map My Run ap.   And I can look back months ago as to what I ate and all the information is still there.  And again did I mention that this ap is FREE!!!

In the past several months I have tried to include other “diets” into my weight loss journey.  Back in January I attempted  the 30 day Paleo Challenge.  I found that it was extremely restrictive.  I couldn’t sustain that restrictive eating.  So back to Weight Watcher’s I went.  Keep in mind that every time I did something other than Weight Watcher’s, I never missed a Weight Watcher meeting.  I liked the group of people and definitely loved my group leader.

And the closer I got to my goal weight, the slower the weight loss became.  I started to get discouraged.  So I decided to try South Beach for a couple of weeks.  I got closer to my goal weight with that program.  I loved the low carbs but still was not convinced that this was the path I wanted to continue on.

Then came Chris Powell and carb cycling.  I bought the Vemma Bode supplement products that Chris Powell endorses.  I loved the Chris Powell protein powder.  I tolerated the protein drink  for my afternoon protein snack.  I definitely did not like the colon cleanse (which I definitely will never attempt again).  And it did not do the cleansing it was suppose to do.    After several weeks of doing this program the carb cycling got confusing.  One day you eat low carbs and then on another day you eat high carbs.  It got confusing when I tried to plan my meals.  I would have a nice dinner planned out that would include a carb such as a sweet potato and then realized it was a low carb day and had to readjust the menu. I lost a couple of more pounds which got me very close to my goal weight but decided that carb cycling was not a sustainable lifestyle.

By trying all of these different “diets” I finally reached my goal weight and then I started to get very nervous.  How was I going to eat now?  How was I going to live the rest of my life and not gain any weight back.  I could continue counting calories but I wanted to be a normal person.  Normal thin people don’t count calories.  I could continue with Weight Watcher’s but tired of the meetings and the feared weekly weigh ins.  And honestly while on Weight Watchers, I felt hungry all the time.  So I have chosen a different path.

I got the book, The Calorie Myth by Jonathan Bailor.  It has changed my life and the way I look at food.  It is definitely a low carb way of eating but I am eating the foods that I love.  The basis of the book is eating Non Starchy Vegetables, protein which includes a wide variety of meats and fish. Whole fats that include REAL BUTTER, nuts, avocado’s and whole cream. Dairy includes non-fat Greek yogurt that I absolutely love.  Fruits are also included.  I got to tell you that for the past several weeks I have been loving this way of eating.

What I have found through my weight loss journey is what foods I love to eat and foods that I can live without.   I love all the foods recommended on The Calorie Myth.  I am never hungry.  I eat three meals a day that include a protein and vegetables.  I eat non-fat Greek Yogurt with a fruit for my snack.  I have found that the foods that are not included in my new way of eating, I can live without.  I can live without sugar, starch and wheat.  I love all the protein and vegetable and fats that I am eating.  I feel great and am actually starting to look pretty good.

So Weight Watchers I am sorry, I will no longer be having you in my life.  I am breaking up with you.  Thanks for all that you have given me but I am moving on to a healthier more sustainable lifestyle.

Word Choices

I have been thinking a lot lately on certain word choices.   “I WILL”.  “I CAN’T”. “I WON’T”.  So let’s think about those words.  And I will take them in reverse order.

“I WON’T”.  Now anyone that knows me knows that I am a scaredy cat.  I am afraid of many things.  You might say I am paranoid.  I fear for my safety and I fear for everyone I love’s safety.   So I take precautions ALL THE TIME.  I won’t ride my bike without a helmet.  I will not get in a car without wearing a seat belt.  I won’t bungee jump off of a cliff nor will I parachute out of an airplane.  I will not dive off of a cliff nor will I go in a hot air balloon.  I can do all of these things.  I just WON’T.

Now I CAN’T be an WNBA Basketball player.  It is not because of lack of desire – it is because I CAN’T.  I have no basketball skills nor the height.  I CAN’T be a supermodel not because I don’t want to but more because I am 5 foot 3 inches and supermodels are a bit taller and a bit younger. I CAN’T be an engineer, lawyer or doctor not because I am not smart – I am just not smart in engineering, doctor or lawyer skills.  I honestly CAN’T do any of these things not that I don’t want to.  I just CAN’T.

What drives me nuts are excuses.  I hate it at my Weight Watcher meetings when I hear someone whining about how they CAN’T stay away from cookies.  And our fearless Weight Watcher leader suggests to get the cookies out of the house.  And the whining person says “I CAN’T because my son will have a fit.  He likes my cookies”.  So really this whining person is saying she WON’T give up her cookies.  She can get rid of her cookies but she is using her son as an excuse to eat the cookies.  Can we call a spade a spade here?  You like cookies and ‘WON’T”  make any changes to help yourself not eat them.  So wouldn’t it be better just to say – I like my cookies and I WON’T change.

Another person was whining about how she could not find the time to get in exercise.  I truly understand the time crunch.   Jillian Michaels had a great come back to that excuse.  She said if you had cancer and had to go have chemo for an hour a day – you would find the time.  Why is being good to yourself and your health not as important?  So this person is saying “I WON’T” exercise.  It is not because she couldn’t.  She just chose not to.

“I WILL” is one of my favorite phrases.  I will be the best person I can be.  I will try harder.  I will finish.   I will continue my weight loss journey.  I will strive harder.  I will exercise.  I will exercise harder.  I will keep a food diary.  I will eat healthy foods.  I will drink water and green tea until I float away.  I will be good to myself. I will eat healthy foods.  I will enjoy my life.  I will be thankful for all that I have achieved.  Does it matter if I am perfect in everything?  Absolutely not!

I am still suffering from my bone spur on my achilles tendon so I CAN’T run. (Doctor’s orders).  My long walks are limited but I CAN walk on a limited basis.  But what I have been doing is lifting weights and enjoying it.  I have been bike riding and swimming.  I CAN DO THIS!  I have been eating super healthy.  I have cut all white starches and sugar out of my diet.   Have I cut them out completely?  On a very rare occasion I will eat a starch but that will not undo all the the work I have achieved.  I WILL DO THIS!  And I WON’T  give up.  This is my life long journey and I am loving this journey.

 

Maintenance and I Broke Up

I do not like Maintenance. She sucks!!!!  I went on vacation weighing 149 pounds and one week later I came back weighing 156 pounds.  I was enjoying my friendship with  Maintenance when I went on vacation and came back fat.  I thought I could eat like a normal person.  It did not happen.  Obviously, I did something wrong.  Maintenance did some pretty bad things to my weight,

So fast forward two weeks.  It has been two weeks since I got home from vacation and I have only lost 2 pounds. I am down to 154 pounds.  Why oh why is it so easy to gain weight and so hard to lose it.  Life is not fair.

I need to take action.  I have been sidelined with a foot injury so my activity has been limited.  I have a bone spur on my achilles tendon.  It hurts to walk and running is out of the question.  I am in physical therapy and hopefully very soon the pain will go away.  In the meantime I need to get out every day and do things that won’t hurt my foot.  I have created a picnic bench workout which takes only 20 minutes but leaves me sore and exhausted.  I can also swim and bike.  My eating the last two weeks has been spot on.  Clean eating.   But drinking wine – not so much.

I have a new weight goal.  I think weighing 145 pounds would be perfect for me right now.  So I am back to “dieting” and maintenance has been sidelined.  I will take this one day at a time. I will start logging my food and counting calories which I gave up during my short friendship with Maintenance.  Even though I am eating clean, I think measuring and weighing my food is a must.  I want to average between 1200-1500 calories a day.  I will do an activity every day.  Weight lifting, biking, swimming, picnic bench workout or kettle bells.  I will not use my lame foot as an excuse not to exercise.

And the last thing I need to change is my favorite after work activity – drinking wine.  My dear friend – Chardonnay – I must break up our relationship for now.   Hopefully, very soon I will be able to rekindle our friendship.  But just for now I have to say good bye.  I am much sadder than you about this break up.  You bring me such joy and relaxation.  But you also brought me several unwanted calories.  So I have found a new drink to relax with – diet tonic water with lime.  It is very refreshing.  And if I put it in a wine glass it tastes even better.

I am taking one day at a time.  I really want to become friends again with Maintenance.  When I reach my goal weight I will definitely have a respect for my new friend.  For right now I don’t like her.  We did not become friends our first go around.  When I reach my new goal weight I will treat Maintenance with new respect.  I will not abuse her.  I will respect her.  So Maintenance just like my glass of wine, I am breaking up my relationship with you.  I am looking forward to rekindling our friendship and I am hoping it will be soon.  And when we do rekindle our friendship I will definitely play by your rules.  You will not make me fat ever again.  I will do everything for you to become my best friend.  Because Maintenance you and I will be life time buddies.

 

Vacation Weight Gain

Now I ask you.  How in heck did I successfully gain 6 pounds on vacation????  6 pounds!!!  That is a lot of weight to gain in one week  – or is it?  In my weight loss journey I have never even lost 6 pounds in one week.  I never even lost 6 pounds in one month.  So why did my body allow me to gain 6 pounds in one week?????

It is my fat cells.  They love me.  They are my best friend.  They want me to stay fat.  They have no other friends – except me.  I guess, I felt sorry for them because I thought I had broken up my relationship with them.  But I knew they were lonely.  They were crying out to me to come back to them and be their friend.  They wanted to party.  I am always up for a party and it was vacation time.  So unfortunately, I let them back into my life.  Party Time!

I guess I could have gained more.

I ate my regular foods.  I just may have ate too much of my regular foods.  I had plenty of meats, vegetables, healthy fats (a lot of nuts), and fruit.  I stayed away from the starches – no bread, no potatoes (except for one very large baked potato laden with real butter which was soooo delicious) with our grilled steak.  No sugar.  And I really mean No Sugar.  Even when we went to the all you can eat Paul Bunyon restaurant, I didn’t eat pancakes or donuts (actually I had a small bite of the most decadent donut ever made).   I did indulge in the eggs, ham and sausage.  And since it was all you could eat for one low price, I had to get my money’s worth.

I was active.  I kayaked, walked, ran, and did my picnic bench work out.  Swimming was not a great option because the lake at the Wisconsin Dells was a bit murky with a lot of stuff floating in it.  Seaweed.  I am not fond of swimming around and in between sea weed.  But I stayed active.  Okay.  Maybe not that active.  I probably could have done more.  But sitting down with a glass of wine was very enjoyable.

Talking about wine.  I probably drank a bit too much wine.  But what is a vacation if you can not indulge a bit.  Maybe starting to drink wine at 3 in the afternoon was not the healthiest choice.  But aren’t you suppose to relax when you are on vacation?  And relaxing it was.  I even took a nap one day and read a book on another day.

So I am blaming my fat cells on this weight gain.  I had nothing to do with it.  And when we got home last night my fat cells would not leave me alone.  They wanted me to continue the party.  I did not want to let them down, so before bedtime I had 2 – not just one – but 2 bowls of ice cream drenched in Baily’s Irish Cream.   It was delicious.  I loved every bite of it.  And so did my fat cells.

Vacation eating and drinking was fun for the week.  But today is another day.  I have gotten rid of the ice cream (actually ate it all) and filled the refrigerator with all of my healthy vegetables, greek yogurt, almond milk, fruits and meats.  I am sorry fat cells but I have to put you back in your cell.  Cell Block 1 is where you all belong.  I will not visit you today.  Because  today I am going to eat clean and get back on track.

 

Knowledge is Power

books wheat belly  chris powell

Ask my husband.  He will tell you how many “diet” books I have on my I-Pad and Kindle.  I am reading a “diet” book ALL THE TIME.  I wake up and head down stairs to my favorite spot on the couch with a cup of coffee and read.  I go to bed reading my latest “diet” book download.   I am a true believer that knowledge is power.

I am amazed as to how many good books are out there about weight loss and healthy living.  And it is so easy with my I-Pad and Kindle to browse the “store”, download a sample and if I like the book – purchase it.  It is so much easier to download a book than go to the library (which I never do) or go to the book store to find out that the book I wanted is either not in stock or sold out.

I love my “diet” books.  I refer to them all the time.  Every book has a slightly different outlook on “dieting”.  A lot of the books all say the same thing – but just in a slightly different way.  It can get confusing.  Should I carb cycle with Chris Powell or eat nothing but lean meats and vegetables like the cave men with “The Paleo Coach”?  “150 Pound Gone Forever” is a delightful book of a women’s weight loss journey based on Fat Percentage.  She lost her weight by measuring her fat intake which was no more than 30% of her total calories.  Then there is “The Calorie Myth” that swears fat is good for you and quit counting calories.  It is grains that are bad for you.  “Wheat Belly”  also states that grains will make you sick and give you a fat stomach.  Stop – let me get off the spinning wheel.  Who am I to believe?  Which plan am I to follow?

With every book I read, I learn something new.  Yes it can and does get confusing.  But I get bored very easily.  So it is actually pleasurable for me to see what theories are out there for weight loss.  I do try new things.  I am really tired of not eating fat.  And limiting my fat intake to 2 teaspoons of olive oil a day with Weight Watchers is getting quite boring.  I hate fat free cheese.  It tastes like cardboard.  So when I read Jonathan Bailor’s book “The Calorie Myth”, I was elated to learn that fats are good for you.  And fats are not the culprit for making us fat.  But you just have to learn what are good fats and what are bad fats.

My weight loss is a lifetime journey.  I will be doing this for the rest of my life.  I don’t think I will ever be someone who just never thinks about her weight or never thinks about what she eats.  I think about my weight and what goes in my mouth ALL DAY LONG.   And if I am going to keep the 64 pounds off that has taken me years to lose, I have to be in control of my mind and my behaviors.  And the knowledge that I have learned from my beloved books will always help me do this.

 

 

I’ve Reached My Goal Weight

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Weight – 149 pounds

So what is a goal weight?  For me it was the highest weight I could get by with so I could quit paying for meetings at Weight Watchers.  Weight Watchers set my goal at 141.  At the rate I was going with my slow weight loss, I knew that I would be paying for meetings for at least another year.  So with a doctor’s note I set my own goal weight.  I chose 150 pounds.  I thought that a loss of 50 pounds sounded better than 48 or 49.  I like round numbers.

I can now go to my Weight Watcher meetings for free.  It is a very liberating feeling.  However, you need to be within 2 pounds of your goal weight to go for free.  Ok.  That keeps one accountable.  But then I got to thinking about – what if I have a bad week and I gain weight ?  Then I will need to pay again.  And with E-Tools (Weight Watchers on-line tools) you have to pay over $40 per month.  I really wanted to keep my E-Tools so I got another doctor’s note for 155 pounds – just in case.  I have not needed to use that note.  And I hope I will not have to.

Now you might be thinking I am a cheap skate.  Maybe.  But $40 plus dollars a month every month does add up.  I am at a point in my weight loss journey that Weight Watchers is no longer doing it for me.  I am looking for better and healthier ways of eating.  Blasphemy!  Yes I said it.  I am not 100% sold any more on Weight Watchers.  The program was great for me.  It taught me how to eat again.  I learned nutrition.  I learned portion control.  And I had a great support group.

I will continue to go to the meetings.  I really like my group leader Bonnie.  She is a great speaker.  And there are so many great topics that are talked about.  I still have bad behaviors that I know I will have to be in control of for the rest of my life.  Like diving head first into an appetizer and dessert tray.  I have only done that a few times but that is one behavior that needs to be kept in check.   I do like the support of the group.  It is comforting to know that I am not the only person with uncontrollable behaviors.  And I do learn from everyone there.

What I have quit doing is counting calories and counting points.  Those tasks did keep my accountable during my journey.  But for now it is not serving any purpose.  I no longer journal what I am eating.  I am very aware of the good foods and the bad foods I am eating.  For right now I am concentrating on eating lean meats, fish, a ton of vegetables (I have fallen in love with spinach and kale), limited fruits and healthy fats.  I have taken sugar and grains totally out of my diet.  I eat as much as I want and do eat when I am hungry.  I decided I am not a 3 meal a day person.  I am more of a 5 times a day kind of gal.

I am loving my new look.  And I feel great.  But this is definitely not the end of my journey.  Maintaining one’s weight is extremely difficult.  I have seen so many people reach their goal to only gain all their weight back.  I am determined that I will not be one of those statistics.

So my journey has not ended.  It is just the beginning.  I am just not continuing my journey as an obese person but a normal person.  Being at my goal weight is a great feeling.  But my life long journey will continue.