Sunday, April 10, 2016
Look, ordinarily a pound a week is totally acceptable, but when you're not eating four whole days, you kind of expect a bit more. But I'm thinking this is my usual pattern that I used to see before the hormones interfered -- lose well two weeks, then have monthly weight gain for two weeks. Next week will tell, I guess. So far after stopping the progesterone cream, I have had two normal 28 day cycles. A doctor recently told me that when your cycles start coming every 21-23 days (as mine had been before the cream) it's a sign you'll go through menopause in the next 1-4 years. If it's about age 55 like my mom, it means I could be dealing with 3-4 week cycles for the next 2-1/2 years, so I just gotta get used to some ups and downs I guess.
What you see above are my results at the end of the week. Alternating fasting days and eating days, however, means that I see a roller coaster ride on the scales during the week. For example, I could see a loss of 6 pounds, followed by a 5 pound gain after an eating day, and that just repeats. Much of that is water weight and to be expected. As long as the overall result is moving down, though, I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing. As I said, as soon as this cycle passes, I should hopefully see a much nicer drop next week. Fingers crossed!
Someone at work asked me whether I take bone broth on my fasting days. I do not -- I mostly have water, tea and Pepsi Max. Only twice have I ever had a headache while fasting, and both times a little salt with water fixed me right up. So I know sodium is important while fasting. Dr Fung recommends bone broth and gives a recipe for it -- like many recipes I've seen online they recommend cooking this stuff for anywhere from 24 hours (chicken) to 48 hours (beef). I personally cannot go to sleep leaving my stove on. I have electric, but I still just don't feel safe doing that. Others recommend using a crock pot, but I don't think it's safe to let it run that long. I once let mine run for 16 hours as a specific recipe called for, and now I have a brown 'burn' mark on the outside of the crockpot. I have also contacted Crockpot manufacturers and they highly recommend against leaving it run that long. So no, I have never made my own bone broth, though I'm sure it's nutritious.
Well the guy at work recommended an organic place not far from work that sells it, so I went there and checked it out. They sell it hot by the cup (small was around $5 and larger around $8) or you can buy a 500ml frozen container with about 2 larger serves in it for $12.50. She gave me a small sample of the chicken which wasn't bad. I guess I was expecting it to taste more like standard chicken broth, but this is bone broth and not as "chicken flavoured" as I had expected. She said most people find the chicken more palatable, and that the beef yields a stronger flavour. Well I took home a 500ml tub of chicken and it's thawing in my fridge over the weekend, so I'll give it a try Monday and Tuesday. But the lady was kind enough to advise it's much cheaper to make the stuff yourself, and they only cook theirs for about 9 hours (chicken) to overnight (beef) and they feel that's long enough. From what I've heard you need to cook it longer to get all the nutrients.
She also advised that while she does use it, just adding salt to your water will work if you're just worried about getting enough sodium. I asked whether she adds enough that it actually tastes salty - she said she does, in fact plain water she doesn't like anymore because she's used to the salt. I personally think I'll just worry about it when my body advises I need it. I will use this bone broth Monday and Tuesday because I've bought it, but in general it's been working for me to just have a bit of salt when I feel a slight headache, and then it goes away.
What about you guys -- fasting or not, do you make bone broth? I'd be interested to hear about your experience with it.
Sunday, February 28, 2016
16 Jan - 84.1 kg - 185.41 lb.
23 Jan - 85.3 kg - 188.05 lb.*
30 Jan - 86.7 kg - 191.14 lb.
06 Feb - 86.3 kg - 190.26 lb.
13 Feb - 84.7 kg - 186.73 lb
20 Feb - 87.6 kg - 193.12 lb.*
27 Feb - 86.3 kg - 190.26 lb.
I kept doing Phase 1 for those first few weeks. The star means I had my cycle that week. I should have dropped weight after that, yet the end of January and start of February I weighed more. So I returned to intermittent fasting. Slight drop 13th Feb, but of course another star week followed.
So this past week I changed it up again. Instead of going entire days fasting, which just wasn't working, I decided to fast 23 hours each day, eating just one meal at dinner time within a one hour eating window. I've done this for over a week now, and combined it with a fair bit of exercise. Besides walking about an hour each day, I've done heaps of work around the house. Things like raking, shovelling and hauling a gazillion wheelbarrows full of rocks from what used to be an above-ground pool area in the back yard, and tearing down an old shed by hand this weekend. My body is definitely feeling all the extra exercise lately, trust me, and there is a lot more to come. Did any of this help me lose weight?
Well, the first few days I lost some. Then I stayed the same for a few days, then back up today almost where I started. I am beyond frustrated. My husband tells me to just be happy where I am and just eat healthy and not worry about it so much, but if I am fighting this hard to lose weight and I stop fighting, I will regain even more! I know I will. Trust me, I would LOVE to give up the fight. But I'm not going to. So what to do next?
Well I still haven't found a chance to make that doctor's appointment, between all the extra work to be done around the house and being busy as hell at work. I haven't had a chance to call my doctor, but I will find the time. I'm thinking the progesterone cream isn't helping as I'd hoped though. So I'll try something else. What else can I do? I'm going to try heaps smaller portions. Literally cut my dinner portions in half, have just an Atkins shake for breakfast, and a small can of tuna or the other half of my dinner for lunch. I just don't know what else to do at this point. I feel like I've got nothing worth blogging about anymore, yet here I am. I guess I'm not ready to give up on that yet either.
Saturday, January 16, 2016
Struggling to break through stalls and reach goals is very common and very real. I did promise to share the good and the bad on this journey, so I'll try to remember that even when the going gets tough. Stalls suck, but I'm proud to say I have not given up, so maybe that's inspiring in and of itself.
In any case, when I last posted it was just before Christmas and I had every intention of staying the course through the holiday break. I was not successful. We had family up and every time I turned around it was an eating fest, whether at someone's home or out at a restaurant. I gave in on more than one occasion and quickly found myself regaining. I haven't posted weights lately, so here goes. On 19th December I was 80.7 kg (177.9 lb). by 2nd January I was 85.9 kg (189.38 lb). The family all went back home shortly after that and I was determined to start over. This time I thought I would try strict LCHF. I've dabbled with it and tried a few recipes, but never followed it strictly before, so I did for a whole week, using delicious recipes from DietDoctor.com. It was not easy eating that much fat and it was very high calorie, but I stuck it out for a week. On 9th January I was 87.7 kg (193.35 lb). What the hell ... I gained?!
Some people may do well on LCHF, but I didn't like it and was not about to continue! What to do? Going back to Dr Poon Phase 1 hadn't worked the last few times I tried it. But I had to do something, so I started again last Sunday (10th Jan). The next day I was down 1.5 kg (3.3 lb). Then another kilo (2.2 lb) the next day. I stayed steady the next day, then went up 100g (.22 lb), then saw another drop. Yesterday I was 84 kg exactly (185.19 lb), that's a loss of 3.7 kg (8.16 lb) in just 5 days. I haven't seen a drop that big since my very first week of Pooning! In fact, that's exactly what I lost in my very first week! Today I'm up 100g (.22 lb) but that doesn't worry me, I'm still down 8 pounds! Now lest you think it was all water weight, my scale says it was over half fat.
So why did it work this week? What's changed? The only thing I can think of is I've started my 2nd month of progesterone cream. If the hormonal change of nearing menopause was causing my weight struggles (as it does for so many women my age) then maybe progesterone cream is making a difference. My cycle sure is behaving the way it used to a couple of years ago. No more of this every three week crap, it's more like 37 days now. I don't know whether it's the progesterone cream or not, but I plan to keep using it. And I'll ask the doctor about it.
Yes, I did schedule an appointment to have my thyroid checked. I scheduled it before I saw this week's drop, and part of me wonders if I should cancel (it's rather expensive!) but I don't want to assume one very good week means I'm back on track. And the thyroid could still be a factor. I have quite a few of the symptoms listed in the article Jan kindly shared with me, and while some of them could apply to PCOS as well, I'd like to be sure. The nurse told me the doctor would charge me $250 (I'd get $150 reimbursed from Medicare) but I didn't think to ask whether there would be any other charges (e.g. for pathology). I think it's important get tested though, so I think I should keep the appointment.
Anyway, thank you to those of you who are still with me, I appreciate it very much. I will be in touch more frequently, I promise. I'll leave you with another great success graphic, and I hope it helps you as much as it does me.
I'll be sure to let you know how the thyroid tests go. Hope your new year is off to a great start! :)
Saturday, November 7, 2015
At my Halloween Party this year, at least three people said I was skinny now. I often hear I look great or so thin now and shouldn't worry about losing more weight. I am so not thin. I've talked about this before -- part of me thinks people are used to fat being normal, so because I am no longer morbidly obese and look more like most average people, I am fine and can stop now. But still I struggle and am frustrated because I have not reached my goal. My goal is 150 pounds, which is still overweight for me (I'm just under 5'4") but it's the goal I originally set for myself and I feel like if I give up before I get there, I've failed at yet another weight-loss effort. And truth be told, I'm not happy at this weight.
In saying that -- I recall a post from two years ago where I talked about where my struggles with weight first began. Back in high school I weighed about 165 pounds and I was never happy with that, thus starting a life-long battle with weight, and sending me skyrocketing into morbid obesity.
Now in my 50s I find myself frustrated because I've maintained a weight fluctuating between about 160-170 pounds for eight months now. I said two years ago that I was determined to succeed this time and I knew I wouldn't quit. That's why I keep obsessing about reaching my goal. But am I just reverting to that same high school girl who wasn't happy with herself and her weight at 165 pounds? Should I just be happy that I've lost as much as I have, that I'm no longer morbidly obese, and that I seem to be able to maintain at this weight? I really struggle with wanting to find some balance between being happy with myself and who I am, and being someone who can achieve her goals. And if I'm happy at this weight, will I relax my efforts to continue losing and possibly regain? Is my whole life going to be about what I weight and what I eat from now on? When is enough enough?
Saturday, March 28, 2015
Saturday, January 24, 2015
I have had a lovely drop of 1.9 kg (4.19 lb) this week, and in fact it's not all monthly water weight either -- according to the scale 1.5 kg (3.4 lb) of it was fat and only 0.3 kg (0.7 lb) was water. So once this cycle ends in a few days, I should have another drop. I think the coming week will be the real determiner of whether intermittent fasting (IF) is making a difference. If I continue to drop this week rather than staying in the 80s, I'll truly feel I've broken the four month plateau. Wish me luck!
Sunday, January 4, 2015
Sunday, December 7, 2014
One week ago I was back up to 83.8 kg (184.75 lb) from my low weight two weeks prior, which was 80.8 kg (178.13 lb). But this morning I can say I've dropped the extra weight and just a bit more. So I have a new low weight of 80.6 kg (177.69 lb). That's a drop of 3.2 kg (7.05 lb) from last week and leaves me 3.69 pounds from being merely overweight (BMI 29.9) rather than obese. Currently my BMI is 30.5.
So I'm going to do the same thing next week, and keep tracking. I also did plenty of walk/jog intervals and intended to get in 2 strength training and 2 Callanetics as well, but I ended up taking a rest day Friday planning to catch up Saturday evening after the Christmas and birthday parties we had to attend. But there have been some recent changes at work that have me relocated to a new area away from the people I've worked with for years, and there were a couple of things I wanted to discuss with the boss. I had to leave the party early to attend a family birthday party, but afterwards I was stewing about it so I just grabbed an Atkins shake for dinner and headed back to the party. I'm glad I did, I enjoyed talking to everyone and may have even created some new opportunities for myself, which is always a good thing.
So I didn't get in those extra workouts, and this morning I really wanted to do walk/jog intervals so that's what I did. I went for a long walk today, just over an hour and a half, and I took a new route with some nice scenic views and less traffic. This road is a long one and mostly an incline - not too steep, but pretty constant, so it was a good workout. On the way back I did my walk/jog intervals. This road has very long blocks, and I was aiming to run for 2-4 blocks, then walk for 1-2, then repeat. I would say the intervals lasted about 20 minutes or so, and I really enjoyed it. Next week I'll be sure to get at least 2 each of the strength training and Callanetics. The one Callanetics I did this week was so enjoyable! Can you believe me saying that about exercise? Well I really enjoy that workout. I've written down the exercises and do them on my own rather than follow the video because they waste a lot of time explaining things and once you know the moves it's easy to do on your own. Plus I got to listen to a nice 70's light rock station on Pandora as I did it. It's a deep muscle workout that gets amazing results, but done slowly so it's actually relaxing and sort of meditative. I love it!
Here's some of the scenery from today's walk/run intervals, followed by my menus for the week. The pictures don't really do it justice, it was lovely.
Saturday, November 29, 2014
Sunday, August 3, 2014
So Saturday morning I was hoping to see 85 kg or less. I get on the scale and see 83.7 kg. Holy crap! Could it be true? No way! I am not one to double-check but I seriously could not help myself, I wanted to see it again! So I got on the scale again and this time it said 84.7 kg. What? A whole kilo difference? I wasn't imaging it, it really did say 83.7 the first time - even the body fat, bone and water percentages were different the second time, and hubby saw the first number too, so it really did change. What the hell!? Third time's a charm, right? I checked one more time. Still 84.7 kg. That first weight must have been a fluke so I decided to go with the 84.7. Hubby suggested I check it again after my walk. OK.
We went for our walk and it was really chilly out. I was so cold I started running just to warm up. I ran for maybe 5 minutes, then walked with him and the dog for awhile until we turned back and that cold breeze hit me again. I ran for the next five minutes or so again, and walked the rest of the way. When we got home I got back on the scale and this time it said 86.2 kg! WTF? There is no way my weight can fluctuate 3-6 pounds in an hour! I was so pissed. I know the number on the scale should not determine my emotional state for the day, but after all these awful fluctuations to see a new low weight only to have it yanked away -- well it really hit me hard. I only lost about 1.5 kilos during the month of June, so I had really high hopes for July. Ending it pretty much right where I started is not fair. Not after teasing me with 83.7 then 84.7. Maybe the 83.7 was a fluke, but I got 84.7 twice so does it count? Do I write it down for this week or not? I was ready to give up, just throw in the towel. Hubby said all the right things and supported me as he always does, but I just was not hearing it, I was pissed.
I was so frustrated I forgot to enter it in my weekly spreadsheet until late last night. Not sure what I should put, just for the hell of it I entered 83.7 kg to see what I would have weighed had that been real. It would have been 184.53 pounds which would have meant I had lost 102.74 pounds! No way! So what if it was 84.7 then? That would be 186.73 pounds which would mean I had lost 100.53 pounds! Either way I lost over 100 pounds -- except for that final weigh-in after my walk which is still where I'm at today! I cannot believe I got to 100 pounds lost yesterday and it was yanked away because I went for a walk!? I feel like I was robbed, I really do. So what weight do I list for this week? I think the 84.7 should count being as I confirmed it and I usually weigh first thing, not after a walk. It's not where I am now but it would hardly be the first time I gained the day after a new low weight. Only this time it was an hour after!
I did some research last night and found that apparently getting different weights like that on my particular scale is not uncommon - there's a forum where people with the same brand and model scale as me complained about the same thing happening to them. But I haven't seen anything like that until yesterday. So today I dug out my old scale (which doesn't show body fat or water %) and it agrees with the other scale. Well pretty much, it says 86.1 instead of 86.2. So that's where I'm at this week, I don't know what to make of it. Did I lose 100 pounds or not? Do I write 84.7 or 86.2? I give up.
Saturday, July 26, 2014
But my journey must continue, so now that the water weight has passed, I'm here to give you an update. At 50 and having PCOS I should hope that my cycle would start tapering off but it appears mother nature has other ideas. But I'm happy to report I've had a drop this week, coming in at 85.6 kg (188.72 lb) which is a loss of 0.6 kg (1.32 lb) since I checked in twelve days ago, and it brings my total loss to 44.7 kg (98.55 lb). I gotta say, I am sick of the ups and downs, but at least I am moving (creeping slowly) towards the 100 pound mark. And I'm in the 180s now which is fabulous!
Having grown frustrated with the slow progress I started checking out fitness centres in town late last week to see what they offer and get pricing options. Maybe I need to shake things up a bit. At the very least, I could get some advice. I had joined a training studio a few years ago when I was still eating a vegan diet and it didn't product the results I'd hoped. I know that could very well have had to do with the diet, as it was rather carb heavy. When I went there it consisted of group classes 2-3 times a week and was costing me about $100 per month. You could pay extra for one-on-one training, but I didn't. So I already knew what they were about, and I've belonged to Curves in the past as well.
So I decided to stop in and check out a place closer to home called Anytime Fitness. Yup, it's a 24 hour gym so you get a key card that lets you in at any time. They showed me around the place which was basically a lot of equipment and tons of big, burly guys around doing their thing. No classes, they just show you how to use the stuff and leave you to it. Not for me. I know I would need more guidance than that. Oh, and they had a room upstairs where you could do video workouts. Seriously? I can do those at home, and on my schedule. Anyway, it would have cost about $80 a week.
Then earlier this week I went to Vision Personal Training to see what they were about. The lady I met with was nice and I talked to her for about an hour - she was very impressed with how far I've come and asked a lot of questions about what I've been eating, what kinds of workouts I've been doing so far, etc. She was impressed I'd put myself through the C25K and said she could see it in my face how proud of myself I was for that. There were also times she asked about my goals and what I really wanted from this and I teared up a bit because I really didn't know. I've spent all my life feeling rather unworthy, which is one of the reasons I wanted to try running. Just to prove to myself I could do it. But I didn't love running. I mostly didn't want to stall and go back up as I've done several times before. I've spent my life trying to lose weight and I didn't want to give up this time.
She said firstly that the reason I've stalled lately was likely because I've lost muscle and bone as well as fat. Muscle keeps your metabolism high. The exercises I've been doing, while excellent cardio for my heart and lungs, were doing nothing to build muscle. So I need to do strength training. Then she asked if I could see myself eating this way forever, or if there were foods I really missed that would likely come back into my diet at some point. I told her honestly that I could see transitioning to something similar to a low carb or primal diet but that I didn't want to worry about someone else's rules (e.g. no potatoes) but rather find what worked for me and just eat naturally and intuitively without counting, weighing, measuring etc. I miss sweet potatoes, and once I hit goal I'd like to have those again and maybe even occasional oats or rice if they didn't cause any issues for me, but that wheat and sugar (bread, cakes, cookies and junk) would likely never come back into my diet. She seemed pleased with that. She thought I needed to stop stressing about seeing a certain number on the scale and felt that maybe I needed to use measurements or how my clothes fit to measure my progress.
Then she told me about their program and what they could do for me. They appoint you your own personal trainer who helps you determine your goal, whether that's a certain weight or size, or training for something specific (she could get me to love running if that's what I wanted). Then they devise an eating and exercise plan for you to reach those goals in a predetermined time. You work with that trainer at least twice a week, but you are given exercises to do on other days when you come in for group sessions or even to workout by yourself. Their results are guaranteed.
She also said the diet I'm following was darn near exactly what they would recommend, so there would be minimal tweaks required there. Basically she wanted to see me eating a bit more fat and even carbs, especially after a workout. But otherwise what I was eating was pretty well right on, which was good to hear. We talked for a long time, I really felt good when I left except for one thing. Being as they work so closely with you and guarantee their results, it's not cheap. They would want a joining fee of $199, and thereafter $130 a week (or $260 auto deduction every fortnight), for a minimum period of six months. Wow. I said that would be tough and she said that she could let me sign up for 18 weeks minimum if that helped. That's pretty much 4 months, so not a huge difference. The only alternative is if you're willing to pay the entire fee up front, then you can sign up for just 9 weeks. After that you can do it again to renew for 9 weeks, or transition onto the 18 week or six month plan. My heart sank. Seriously this sounded SO good and absolutely perfect for me, but I can't swing it financially right now. I was really bummed out.
The next morning I got up and had a drop, and that's where I still am today at 85.6kg (188.72 lb). I took that as a sign. Yes, this would be lovely, and in another year or so I'll be in a better position where I could even afford it. But that drop told me that I will get there if I just keep doing what I'm doing and maybe try to add some strength training on my own. I don't have weight training equipment at home (other than a few dumbbells) but I do have a couple of workout videos that focus on strength training. I could start there for now, or maybe think about joining Curves again, but either way I'm going to keep moving forward. This is my life now, there is no turning back.
Monday, July 14, 2014
As you may know, I've been very frustrated by an apparent lack of progress on the scale of late. It hasn't been completely stagnant - just painfully, horribly slow! I did see a loss this week, weighing in at 86.2 kg (190.04 lb), which is down 1.2 kg (2.65 lb) from last week. That brings my total loss to 44.1 kg (97.22 lb) so I am slowly inching towards the 100 pound milestone. Not in a straight line, mind you - in fact I didn't even let myself get excited by the 86.2 kilo weigh-in because I ended June at 86.6 and then went back up in the start of July. I figured today the scale would taunt me again and I'd see 87 or 88 again. That's been the pattern lately, the scale givith and the scale taketh away. But thankfully this morning I'm still at 86.2 kg. Given I'm at that stage in my cycle where I usually start gaining water weight, it's anyone's guess what the week will bring. But at this moment I am down 97.22 pounds and I'll take it!
Success isn't a straight line, I know that. Those solid drops week after week for 10 months straight were really nice, and brought me quickly to a 95 pound loss. In June I got over 96 pounds and now mid-way through July I'm at 97.22 pounds gone. Slow as a tortoise BUT ... moving downward overall, despite the fluctuations. THAT is what I choose to focus on, THAT is what will keep me going. I will not throw in the towel, despite my frustration. I've said this before but it's true - every other weight loss attempt I have given up when I hit a plateau. It's SO frustrating to do everything right and see no progress week after week after week. According to Dr Poon there are no plateaus on this plan, yet most people on the support groups have had them. So now it's my turn, and it's not even a plateau really, it's constant fluctuations. This will NOT be the reason I throw in the towel this time. I WILL reach my goal this time, of that I'm sure. Because the real challenge will be staying there and maintaining once I get there. If I let things like plateaus, fluctuations and frustration get to me now, how will I ever maintain once I actually reach my goal? This is practice, that's what it is. This is a lesson to prepare me for what's to come. So bring it on, I'm a good student. :)
I'm still doing Turbo Jam twice a week and taking two big walks on the weekends. It was really cold and windy this weekend but I got out there anyway and got the walk in. I've even added a couple of intermittent fasting days during the week just because I'm rarely hungry in the morning. l only eat two meals a day on weekends anyway, but last week I did that twice during the week as well. I don't see the point in eating if I'm not hungry, and I've read a lot about intermittent fasting lately, and I think it's a good idea. When did this three-meals-a-day tradition start anyway? It doesn't seem natural to be in a constantly 'fed' state, and occasional 'fasting' states are natural for most beings on the planet. In any case, if I were truly hungry I'd eat something, but I rarely am so I'm going to listen to my body and let it tell me what it needs.
That's all for now, hope you're all having a great week! :)