Friday, January 17, 2014

Lordy, lordy look who's forty (and blogging!)

So here I am, on the verge of turning forty, and what do I find myself doing? Trying to lose weight. Again. Go figure! Yes, weight-loss goals have dragged me back into the blogging world. I thought I might as well give it a go again. It's been an age and a half since I've last blogged, but maybe there are some die-hards out there who might see this in their blog feed and remember me from the good ol' days. If so, Hello! How are you?

I seem to be getting about 20 hits a day on this poor dusty thing despite the lack of blogging activity. I always wonder what people think may have happened to me since the last blog post so long ago. Well, I will tell you.

I gained more weight. Not a horrible, terrible, ghastly amount of weight, but basically I am back where I was when I started this whole crazy journey in 2009. If you want to know part of what happened you can hit my archives to my last blogs before this one.

 Last time I blogged I was trying out the 17 Day Diet, and I have to say that was a miserable failure. The restrictions made me feel like a grumpy, hungry bear with a head full of fuzz. I just ended up eating normally, which means poorly, immediately after and gained back the 7 lbs I lost. Since then, I've skated along, being unhappy with my body but doing nothing about it and slowly, bit by bit creeping up to my current weight. Well, not quite. Because I have started again. I was looking for a nice way to kick-start my weight loss because I have to do something. Not just for my health and happiness, but also because I'm going to freakin' Jamaica in two months! That's the land of shorts, tank tops and the dreaded bathing suit. I've been telling myself for FOUR months already that I would get started on a weight-loss plan "soon". Yes, soon. It will happen soon. Or never. Maybe never.

I had to give my head a shake. When the new year came and went and I was till doing a bunch of nothing, I stumbled across Dr. Oz's Kick-Start to Weight Loss plan. I thought I'd see if my fiancé would be into trying it with me. What I like about it was all the veggies in the plan. We were just telling our fat selves that we have to eat more friggin' veggies already. Also, it was supposed to cure cravings for sweets and carbs.  All good stuff to me! So we went out and bought a shit-ton of crap the plan had on it's shopping list (I love that it has a shopping list!). We couldn't find rice protein powder at le crappy grocery store we frequent because it's cheap, so we bought a whey-based powder instead. If I had to wait another day to start this thing to scour health food stores, I might never start. It was now or never. I am SO glad I chose now. :)

If you want to check the plan out, click here

It's pretty simple stuff. The first day came, and I started off with a smoothie of raspberries, banana, unsweetened almond milk, flax seed and  protein powder. I was a bit worried I would be starving a couple hours after drinking this, but it is definitely filling with some staying power. I am supposed to have hot water with lemon, but my slow-ass doesn't have time for that in the morning.

Unlimited veggie broth is on the list as well. We found some organic stuff (recommended if you don't make it yourself), but it wasn't low-sodium. We found low-sodium the next shopping trip though. I put about two cups of the broth in my trusty Costco thermos with some liberal sprinklings of pepper and sip it most of the afternoon.  I can also eat unlimited amounts of low-glycemic index veggies throughout the day as well. Veggies are not really my thing, so there are about 5 on the list I really like eating. I decided to cut up a bunch of colourful peppers to snack on at work along with some sliced cucumber. I also made a salad of mixed greens, grape tomatoes, red onion and a bit of balsamic for dressing (the only "approved" item for salad dressing). I now add a couple small grilled chicken cubes and/or brown rice to this salad to keep it interesting and more filling. I've also brought homemade hummus for my veggies.

For dinner, the first day we did chicken in a marinade of balsamic, bit of olive oil, parsley, oregano, garlic powder, basil and pepper along with brown rice and salad. We have since then also made turkey chili with kidney beans and crushed tomatoes (though we had to cheat a wee bit and add some tomato sauce), and it was delicious, and turkey meatballs which were meh.

For snacks at home,  I have some plain 2% Greek yogurt. Plain. Yuck. It was so bad I had to try some vanilla and cinnamon to choke it down. Le crappy grocery store doesn't like to stock the plain yogurt, so we ended up with vanilla after that, and wow is it so much better! I felt a bit bad as it has more sugar than the plain, but I luuuuurve eating it, and I need something that makes me happy to eat it on this plan. I also have nuts and the hummus and veggies at home. I plan on making some wicked tzatziki as well. Garlic-y goodness!

Here's what it all looks like broken down for me.

Breakfast: Smoothie

Lunch: Salad with tomatoes, onion and balsamic dressing*

Snacks: 1 cup sliced bell peppers, veggie broth, sliced cucumber, hummus, handful of nuts, yogurt

Dinner: 6 oz chicken, 2 cups salad greens, tomatoes, sautéed bell peppers and onion, 1 cup brown rice.

*I sometimes add 1/2 cup rice and some chicken, but then take that portion from my dinner.  

The result? I've lost 9.5 lbs in 10 days. I feel good. I feel energetic. I have less body pain (weird, right?), and I am less sleepy in the mornings and evenings. AND I don't have any desire to eat sugar or carbs. Not only that, but I am almost never hungry! Even when I am hungry, it feels different. I used to feel this pit of gnawing emptiness in my stomach when I was hungry before. Like this insatiable monster was screaming "Feed me! FEED ME!!" in my head constantly. And the monster didn't particularly give a crap what I put in there, just as long as it was something. That something was invariable full of sugar and fat. Now, my hunger is like this tiny little fairy lightly flitting around my stomach saying, "Oh hi! Yes, I'm a bit hungry, but it's no big deal. Feed me whenever you like!" It's the weirdest thing! Quite often if I ignore it, the little fairy just gives up and goes off to do whatever little stomach hunger fairies do.

It's like the polar opposite from my 17 Day Diet experience. So. Much. Better!

A little more about the body pain. For about a month before this, I had a very annoying pain in my back on the right side that only came after I was lying in bed for several hours. It started out I never felt it unless I was in bed for like 8 hours (like on a blissful sleep-in on a Sunday), but it gradually came on sooner and sooner. In the end it hurt after about 4 hours of lying down. I thought maybe it was my mattress, but since we can't afford a new one right now, kinda just let it be. About 3 days into this diet my back stopped hurting. Just. Stopped. No idea WTF is up with that. None.

So that brings me back to today, on the cusp of turning forty. Where do I go from here? How do I start this next chapter of my life?

First of all, I plan to stick to this plan! I like it. Dr. Oz said somewhere to add unlimited lean protein and nuts to the plan for long term. I do get a bit sick of veggies, but I am trying some new ones. We had roasted cauliflower the other night. Nope, still tastes like cauliflower despite the internet's exuberant claims it could convert me. Darn you Pinterest and all your lies. The sautéed eggplant we did last night was a bit more palatable. I also plan on addressing my old nemesis: exercise. I don't like it. I worked out every day for 4 months on my last weight-loss journey and it worked great. I don't want to do that this time. Ick. I  do want to do some sort of activity every day, but I'm thinking walks will intersperse more intense workouts. I'll let you know how it goes.

Overall, I'm extremely hopeful for the future. Losing nearly 10 lbs is extremely motivating. Not feeling hungry all the time is also extremely motivating! Maybe I can stop obsessing over what/when I'm going to eat next because my stupid stomach monster is gone.

I do have one hurdle to get through. Since tomorrow is my birthday, I'm eating off-plan. I've planned it, even. I will eat normally for breakfast and lunch, but dinner will be something else, and there will be some appies and chocolate cake for the party. I'm a bit worried the hunger monster will return after I consume a bunch of carbs and sugar, but it's my 40th freakin' birthday! I'm eating and having some dang cake. But, I will go back on the plan, and will even tack on a few extra days to make up for it.

Stay tuned to find out what happens in the aftermath of eating (ok, and if I'm being honest, drinking) "the old way" for a night!

Stats:  Day 10

Starting Weight: 228
Current Weight: 218.5

Weight lost: 9.5 lbs

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