Showing posts with label Weigh-in. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Weigh-in. Show all posts

Monday, April 25, 2016

I'm over it.

I have fasted completely for four days out of every week for the last six weeks. I seriously expected a decent drop this week, I mean come on! Well ... technically I did drop ... I am down .3 kg or .66 pounds from last week. Better than nothing? Not really. For the last three weeks my weight has remained pretty much the same despite fasting more than half the week. It's looking like just one more thing that works in the beginning and then doesn't.


I'm so over it. I have tried everything I know to get my weight moving again and no matter what I do, the best I can hope for is to stay stalled. Hell, my doctor is out of ideas, she just wants me to be happy where I am. Well where am I? If I start eating normally again, I will regain. Am I really meant to struggle this much just to stay in a stall? Sorry for the pity party, I am just so over it.

It's true that I have no problem fasting -- I don't get hungry for the most part, and I feel good while doing it. But it does put a damper on things, like when hubby wants to go out to the club or friends and family invite us over to dinner. It sucks to remind him I'm not eating that day, and what will we tell them? Strangely enough, meal planning is more challenging when he's the only one eating four nights out of the week.

I have no idea what I'm going to do. After this week, we are on vacation for two weeks and we're going to Queensland. I know he won't want me to fast while we're on holiday. Maybe I'll take a break and resume when we get back ... or not. Whatever I do, it may be time to take a break from blogging because I seriously have nothing interesting to say.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Slight gain, but I rather expected that

I thought I might actually show a gain this week since it was that week, and I did. 0.1 kg (0.22 lb). Such a small amount I'm not going to stress. Since I used to gain a fair bit more during my cycle, this is nothing. I'm hoping to see a much better result next week.


It's frustrating, but since losing at all is so hard these days, the small losses I've been seeing recently are enough to keep me fasting. But I must say part of me feels like I'm not eating for over half the week, dammit I should be getting bigger losses! If you've followed me for any length of time you know that nothing seems to be working anymore and that all signs point to pre-menopause hormonal changes so I am definitely going to keep fasting even if I continue to see only small drops.

Truth be told I like how I feel when I fast. I have learned a couple of things on eating days. Firstly, when I break the fast it needs to be with real food. A few times we were pressed for time so I grabbed an Atkins shake and bar for breakfast. When I did that, I tended to feel a bit nauseous until I ate something more substantial. If I only had a shake, I didn't have that problem, but if I had an Atkins bar (with or without the shake) I did. I never had any problems with Atkins bars before, but it makes sense that if I'm not eating for four days out of the week, then when I do eat it's got to be real food.

The other thing is in the first couple of weeks I had no problem eating larger meals on eating days. Not binge-sized by any means, but a good sized portion. After all, I wasn't going to eat again for the next two days, so I wanted a substantial dinner the night before I started a fast. But now I find I feel overly full if I do that. Last night we had steak and broccoli, and I ended up giving some of it to my husband as I didn't need it all. I suppose needing less food is a good thing.

In any case, that's it for this week, here's looking forward to better results next week.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Another drop; and do you use bone broth?

So another drop this week, marginally better than last week. I'm down .5 kg (1.1 lb) from last week, bringing my total after four weeks of 4-day fasting to 6.8 kg (14.99 lb). Hey, 15 pounds in 4 weeks I will definitely take! :)


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.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Smaller loss this week, but still a loss

Yeah, after the last two weeks having fairly big drops, this week was much less dramatic - despite still fasting four days. Did I indulge a bit more last weekend being Easter? Maybe a little, I did have some mixed nuts which are a favourite of mine. Or could it be monthly weight gain coming around again? Whatever the reason, I'll take the loss and just keep doing what I'm doing.

So this week I'm down just .4 kg or .88 lb. bringing my total loss since 12th March to 6.3 kg or 13.89 lb. I was hoping for another big number, but it is what it is.


I fasted Monday and Tuesday, ate just one meal Wednesday evening with an Atkins bar and a couple tablespoons no-added-sugar peanut butter for dessert, then fasted again Thursday and Friday. I will be especially careful to eat light this weekend and hopefully see better results next weekend.

I've had a recommendation to try cutting out caffeine to help with weight loss ... that one may be tough because on fasting days I drink a lot of tea and some Pepsi Max (never have liked coffee). I feel like these are the last vices I have and it would be tough to give them up. I could switch to caffeine free Diet Pepsi but I don't like it as well as the Pepsi Max. I find I tend to get dry, scratchy throat sometimes during the day and water alone doesn't seem to relieve it, I need the bubbles in the fizzy drinks sometimes. That and it's so bloody cold in the office where I work - year round - and with cooler weather approaching sometimes a hot mug of tea is desperately needed. We'll see - I'll go another week on the same routine and if I don't see a better result, it may be something to consider.

As far as activities, I've walked half hour to an hour every day, and we'll have another big walk this weekend - that and lots of yard chores should keep me busy. That's it for now, hope you all had a great week.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Dropped 2.2 kg this week; nearly 5 pounds!

So this week I followed essentially the same pattern as last week - eating Sunday, Wednesday and Saturday; fasting Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Only instead of light meals Wednesday I only ate one meal in the evening. Actually I was feeling that good and really wanted to go three days in a row, so I fasted during the day and I really didn't want to eat that night. But I'd already planned our menu for the week and it was nice to have a meal with my hubby. But I could easily have gone three days in a row, maybe longer. And I felt great! And I lost close to five pounds this week! So the stats since I started this new fasting routine are:


You can bet I'm going to keep doing this as long as it works - I can't even tell you how thrilled I am to see losses again. So I mentioned I eat very light on Wednesday, in the middle of the fasting periods. On the weekends, I eat normally - not pigging out. I stick to low carb meals, generally starting the day with an Atkins shake and/or snack bar. Lunch is often tuna or egg salad with a green salad on the side, mayo and Dijon mustard combined is my favourite salad dressing. Then I have a low carb meal for dinner followed by an Atkins bar (and sometimes some nuts).

I was toying with the idea of trying to go the full five weekdays without eating, but it is nice to eat with hubby once during the week. Plus this is working right now, so maybe I'll reserve that option in the event I stop losing this well.  We'll see.

Anyway, my citizenship ceremony went very well, we did not go out afterward which made the fasting very easy. I was thinking we had to go up and say our pledges one by one, so I kept trying to memorise it, but when the time came we stood as a group and said it, so it was no big deal. So I'm now a dual citizen! I would never give up my US Citizenship, and fortunately it's not required. But I'm officially an Aussie now, fair dinkum! Aussies will understand. :)

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Drastic measures -- or a healthy fast?

When I last checked in with my test results, I had no idea what my next move was going to be. I'd been told not to worry so much about weight because I was the picture of perfect health and that women my age just have to live with weight struggles. Yes, I wanted to get healthy. But I had another goal too: achieving a healthy weight. I may have passed the blood tests with flying colours, but I still was far above my goal weight. I came so close to goal last July before my trip home sent my weight back in the wrong direction. I'm not ready to give up on my goal. So I had to take a good hard look at where I stood now.

  • 28 Feb - 86.3 kg - 190.26 lb
  • 05 Mar - 88.8 kg - 195.77 lb
  • 12 Mar - 90.1 kg - 198.64 lb

That scared the crap out of me. Yes, I was expecting monthly water weight gain, but I was now way too close to 200 pounds. Healthy or not, I am not prepared to go over 200 pounds again, no way.

I had recently become a member on DietDoctor.com and decided to look through the membership area. I found several videos of interest and spent the next few days watching "Women, Hormones and Nutrition" by Dr Michael Fox, an expert on fertility, PCOS and menopause; "Weight Loss Struggles of Women 50+" and "Women, Hormones and Weight Management" by Jackie Eberstein; and several videos from Dr Jason Fung's course on fasting as the key to treat obesity and diabetes.

Fasting worked great to get me to my lowest weight back in July, but recent attempts had not been so successful. Reviewing Dr Fung's fasting course again I came across one on doing a 7 day fast. Wow. It may sound crazy - but as he pointed out in the video, lots of people dismiss it as something they couldn't do without ever having tried it. The whole reason our bodies even store fat is to get us through periods of famine -- we're meant to live off it when there's no food. Fasting for spiritual purposes is widely practiced in most religions. There are cases of people fasting for 30-40 days or more. Heck the record is a 382 day fast by a 27 year old man in 1966 -- he went from 456 to 180 pounds, losing 276 pounds.

No, I have no plans to fast for a year. I'm not sure I can jump right into a 7 day fast at this stage, either. But I have done two days in a row before with no difficulty, and didn't get hungry. So last week I planned in two 2-day fasts.  I ate normally Sunday; fasted Monday & Tuesday; ate lightly Wednesday; fasted Thursday & Friday; and ate normally Saturday.

I didn't get hungry on my fast days, I really didn't. In fact when Wednesday came I kind of wanted to see if I could go longer, but I decided to stick to my plan for the week so I had light meals. So how did I go?  Well, I'll remind you where I was 12th March compared to where I am now.

  • 12 Mar - 90.1 kg - 198.64 lb
  • 19 Mar - 86.4 kg - 190.48 lb

That's a loss of 3.7 kg or 8.16 pounds this week, 2/3 of which was fat, 1/3 water weight.

It was a week I expected to drop some water weight after my cycle, but still I think that's a darn good result. Never-the-less, I have lost 8 pounds in a week before, basically that brings me back to where I was at the end of February. I plan to follow the same schedule as above next week, three days eating, four days fasting -- but I'm going for my citizenship ceremony Tuesday and may have to swap the days around a bit if the family want to go out to celebrate after. Then again, if I swap Tuesday and Wednesday, that would mean three of the four fasting days would be in a row. Maybe that's a good idea -- try three days in a row first, and then I can decide whether to attempt four or five days.

It may seem drastic to some -- Dr Fung even suggests not telling people about it because some will try to talk you out of it -- but I've done a lot of research on fasting, trust me. If you're interested, you can read Dr Fung's blog posts on fasting here. and he has a full series of videos - some free on YouTube, and others on the DietDoctor.com member site. Fasting is not unhealthy, it's a totally natural thing and something we were actually designed to do. It's the reason our bodies store fat to begin with -- to get us through periods where food is scarce. I felt great during the fasting days, and when it was time to eat again, I kind of wanted to keep fasting. That's not to say that it didn't taste good when I did break my fast, but I'm very much looking forward to trying an extended fast soon. Wish me luck!

Sunday, February 28, 2016

How do I get off this roller coaster?

I'm doing everything I know how to do to lose weight, yet I just keep going down then up again. Everything that used to work no longer does. Or it works briefly then stops. On January 16th I had that big drop after a week of returning to Phase 1 eating again. Since then it's been a roller coaster ride. Seriously, here are the ups and downs.

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

8 lb drop in 1 week? It's Week #1 again!

I'm back and doing well -- I'll talk about my 8 pound drop this week in just a minute, for those of you still interested. First, let me apologise for not writing more, but the fact is I didn't know what to say. Hi, I'm still struggling and had a holiday regain? Who wants to read that?! Well I have lost a few subscribers anyway. People follow and unfollow for any number of reasons, but I can certainly understand only wanting to follow bloggers that inspire you. Struggling for a long time to break a stall may not be very inspiring reading, but it certainly is real. Most people who lose a large amount of weight don't sail effortlessly to goal. I wish it were true, but it's not. It reminds me of that drawing about what people think success looks like vs. what it actually looks like.



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

Will I ever be happy with my weight?

Firstly, the weigh-in. I last reported I was at 76 kg (167.55 lb) but the next day I was back to 77.8 kg (171.52 lb) where I stayed all week! I was that frustrated I returned to Alternate Day Fasting three days this week yet the weight didn't budge. I remained 77.8 kg all week long. Until this morning. Now I'm 75.7 kg (166.89 lb) and coming off a fast day I'm almost afraid to eat today. It's so frustrating when everything that's worked before doesn't seem to work anymore. So many women talk about that same thing happening once they are in their 50s. I'm starting to think my body just wants to stay in the 165 lbs range and I'm never getting back to my low weight of 158 just before my trip home, much less my goal of 150. My husband thinks I should stop obsessing over reaching my goal and just be happy where I am. He's not alone.

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?

Sunday, November 1, 2015

A smaller drop, and what I'm eating

So when I last checked in I was 76.7 kg (169 lb), and as I predicted, my next drop wouldn't be quite as big. I am now 76.0 kg (167.5 lb), a loss of a pound and a half, and that's fine with me.

What's made it really easy to follow my new plan is having quick, easy breakfast and lunch options I can just grab and go without having to cook.  Breakfast is usually a protein shake, and I frequently have tuna for lunch with an individually wrapped cheese stick to bring up the fat content a bit (and because they're so tasty) or just some cottage cheese and pickles.  So really the only cooking I'm doing is for evening meals, on the days I eat them. I have been having some form of dessert every day such as an Atkins bar or ice cream treat which of course are made with artificial sweeteners. I would like to reduce my use of artificial sweeteners but have relied on them throughout my weight-loss journey because they do make it easier and my view is whatever helps you get there is OK.

I never thought I'd be a fan of these flavoured tunas as growing up we always had just mayonnaise in tuna. I still like it with mayo and often have it that way on a big bed of salad, but these little tins of flavoured tunas are so quick and convenient to grab for lunch that I have been using them a lot more often. My favourite flavours have been Zesty Vinaigrette and Sun-dried Tomato and Basil.  I'm not a fan of fish in general, so tuna is about the only way to get me to eat fish.

They're so convenient and I really like them, but I've always heard you shouldn't eat too much tuna due to the possible mercury contamination. I know several people in Australia that eat tuna every day and tell me they're not worried about mercury at all. One said she feeds it to her children every day as well and she's never even heard of any mercury worries.  I have heard recommendations to only have tuna once or twice a week, but if you go on the websites for the companies that produce it, they claim they monitor mercury levels very carefully and there is no cause for concern. Do most people still worry about mercury contamination in tuna?

Not much else to report - hope you all had a Spooktacular Halloween.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

It's working! Down 4.85 lb this week.

I weighed in this morning at 76.7kg (169 lb), which is down 2.2 kg (4.85 lb) from where I was just eight days ago when I started my new plan. I've been using FitDay and saved my own custom foods list which makes it quick and easy to track what I eat by just picking from the list. I've stayed LCHF (low-carb, high-fat) skipping my evening meal every other day. Calorie intake ranged from 1100-1300 on the days I had dinner to 800-900 on the days I didn't. Some of that loss is water weight of course, but I'm so happy to finally be back in the 160s, and just 19 pounds from goal.

Keeping it LCHF has been really satisfying -- I'm never hungry so it's really easy to stay on plan. My averages for the week were 9% of calories from carbs, 33% protein, and 58% fat. That's pretty close to my goal of 10% carbs, 30% protein and 60% fat.

So that's about it -- obviously I will stay the course this week, and while I don't think I'll pull big numbers in week two, I'm very hopeful I'll continue moving in the right direction.

Monday, September 7, 2015

I'm back! Damage report to follow.

Hi everyone, I'm back in Australia! Wow that vacation went by fast. I have only a week left before my return to work, and I'll be using that week to get back into my normal eating routine.

In Wisconsin walking through the park.

The trip was wonderful, we went biking and walking a lot, so we did stay active. We had so much fun we've decided to buy some bikes so we can continue to ride at home. While the mountain bikes were really nice, we're leaning toward the fold-up camping bikes we rode in Wisconsin as we can just stick them in the car and drive to anywhere we want to ride. There are some really lovely trails around here, many of which we've already walked and we can't wait to ride them and explore further.

Biking in Oregon.

The decision now is whether to get the comfortable gel seat (or granny seat as my brother calls it) or stick with a standard seat. He claims granny seats only seem more comfortable at first but are not in the long run.  I don't know but my butt wanted more cushion!

Walking through a lovely park in Oregon.

Another bike ride in Oregon.

As good as it was to see everyone again after nine long years, and as much as I enjoyed seeing how my home town has changed since I've been gone, it sure is good to be back home. As I said, we remained active while we were in the States, and the first couple of weeks we did pretty good at eating healthy as well. As my period tends to come every three weeks and brings major cravings, I was indulging more in my last week in Wisconsin. When we got back to Oregon we were eating out at nearly every meal. There were times we excused ourselves and walked into town to grab a salad instead but as our time was winding down I wanted to spend as much time as possible with my loved ones so we often went with them.

When I didn't have access to a scale, I tried on the new size 12 jeans every morning to be sure they still fit.  They did, but unfortunately the fact I could still get them on didn't mean I hadn't gained weight.  So what's the damage report? My lowest weight before my trip was 71.8 kg (158.29 lb) on 26th July. Due to monthly weight gain and changing eating habits even before the trip (we were trying to get rid of all perishable food before we left so ate away from home more rather than buy groceries) my weight on 4th August was actually 74.9 kg (165.13 lb). That first week in Oregon my weight varied between 163 and 165 pounds so not too bad.  In Wisconsin and Illinois I had no scale. On returning to Oregon post-period I was 172 pounds. My first weigh-in since returning to Australia I'm now 78.3 kg (172.62 lb). During my month overseas I gained 3.4 kg (7.49 lbs) ... but since my lowest weight 26th July I've gained 6.5 kg (14.33 lb). Now begins damage control!

I didn't do any fasting while away from home, and after having indulged in more carb-heavy foods I don't think an immediate return to fasting would work. So the plan this week is to return to eating Phase 1 foods. When I start back to work next week, I'll start incorporating fasting again. This was a well-deserved trip home to spend time with people I've missed for nine years, so I am not about to beat myself up over this regain. But I've come too far to let it keep me from reaching my goal ... I am still very determined to reach my goal yet this year. So that's the plan ... I'll check in again soon.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

I'm in the 150s! 8 pounds from goal!

Yeah, I'll probably be posting more frequently on the lead up to my overseas vacation, being as I'm on leave from work now. I dreamed of being at goal when I go and today I am one step closer.

I am 71.8 kg (158.29 lb) this morning. That means I've lost 58.5 kg (128.97 lb) and have just 3.8 kg (8.36 lb) to go. Seriously? I'm in the 150s?! How freaking cool is that?!

I know I will continue to fluctuate and may not hit goal before I go but for now I am just going to bask in the glory that is the 150s. Have a fabulous day everyone, I know I will.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

126.7 pounds down; just 10.5 to go!

Let the vacation begin!!  Yes, I have finished work and am now off for seven weeks -- 7 WEEKS! Yikes, that is a long time but I bet it will go fast.

Let's get this week's stats out of the way -- I weighed in at 72.8 kg (160.5 lb) which is a loss of 0.7 kg (1.54 lb) from last week, and 57.5 kg (126.7 lb) overall.  I am just 4.8 kg (10.5 lb) from my goal! Seriously, I have never gotten this close before ... well, since 1984 anyway!

So now I have 10 days off before we fly back to the States for the month of August. I am both excited and anxious about it. It's been nine years since I've seen friends and family. I'm a bit nervous! I may be much smaller but I'm also much older! It's a long flight. I have so many people to squeeze in a visit while I'm there (my time will be divided between three states).

And of course there's the temptations I've already spoken of -- the food. I've had no problem eating right here in Australia, and it's not like we don't have tempting junk foods here, we surely do. Obesity in Australia is fast catching up with the US. But some favourites from back home are not available here, so the temptation will be higher. But here's the thing. My stomach is not going to tolerate a sudden return to crap eating, it just won't. And I no longer want to eat that way. So while I'm likely to try some things I haven't had access to in years, I do not think it will be difficult to make these be just occasional indulgences. I certainly can't and won't be eating such things every day. Hell even if I could eat that way again, I don't want to be that person anymore, and it's not worth the 20 pounds I'd be likely to regain.

Another thing that might be hard -- I'm used to weighing myself every morning. I have done so for the last two years. Since there will be changes in my eating just by virtue of being away from home if nothing else, I hope I will be able to keep an eye on it, but I may not be able to weigh every day. I have been doing that so long I wonder how I'll cope if I can't satisfy the compulsion to weigh every day.  It's probably good that I start getting into the habit of weighing weekly but I figured that wouldn't be until after I reach goal. I guess since I'm unlikely to reach goal before I go, and I am likely to have some regain when I get back, I will just have to get back on track with ADF when I return until I do reach goal. Because as I've said previously, that IS going to happen this year. I am that determined I know it is. There is no other option for me.  My Happy Scale app is telling me I could be there in September -- that's probably not going to happen due to this trip. But it will happen, that much I know.

I'm told maintenance can be harder than losing it. I guess I'll find out. And I may not even maintain at 68 kg (150 lb). I am only 5'4" tall. Truthfully I should probably be between 57-59 kg (125-130 lb). I got there once in 1984 when I was just 21 years old but it didn't last long and I've never been back. I'm in my 50s now so I don't know how realistic it is to aim for that. At 287 pounds, I was thinking 150 was a reasonable goal, but until I get there I don't know whether I'll be happy there or want to keep going. Anyway, that's a problem for another day. For now, I'm just going to relax and enjoy my life of leisure for the next 10 days until we board that flight.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

So close to goal I can taste it!

So I ended the week at 73.5 kg (162.04 lb) which brings my total loss to 56.8 kg (125.22 lb). I seriously cannot believe I am 5.5 kg (12.13 lb) from my goal weight right now. This weight loss journey has been two years so far, and there were some thrilling successes and frustrating stalls along the way but isn't that what the path to success looks like? It's not a straight line unfortunately, it zigs, it zags and it's full of curves, but I am determined and I will get there.

One more week of work and then I'm on leave for seven weeks. I'm so excited to be going home to the States and I know there will be temptations there ... foods I have missed so much that just are not available in Australia (Chicago deep dish pizza and Reuben sandwiches come to mind) but whatever happens I will reach my goal this year. If I come back from America heavier than when I left I know ADF will help me get back on track and cross that finish line. Nothing is going to stop me.

This week two people who have not seen me in a few months said I looked amazing ... it sure felt good to hear that. One said my face has changed so much, and she probably last saw me when I was just 10-15 pounds heavier. That amount wasn't so noticeable when I was over 200 pounds but now it seems it makes quite a difference. I look in the mirror and I can see my mother now. People have said I looked like her but when I was obese I didn't see it so much. Now I do and I can't wait for family and friends back home to see me again. I have lost weight (and regained it) several times in the past, and when I was last home about nine years ago I was probably about 90 kg (200 lb), not the 130 kg (287 lb) I found myself at two years ago. I don't think I've weighed this little since the late 80s. So if I haven't reached goal before I go it won't matter at all, it will still be a big change for them.

We've had such a cold spell here this week ... there was snow just an hour's drive from me! I have not seen snow in 12 years and I like it that way! It feels sort of like Christmas in July. I'll be going home to the last month of summer and coming back to spring -- it's usually is quite nice here by September so hopefully I can kiss the rest of winter goodbye very soon.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Another small drop

It's been such a busy weekend, I didn't get a chance to check in until now. Then again there wasn't much to report this week. I did see one more small drop to 73.6 kg (162.26 lb) ... that brought me to 56.7 kg (125 lb exactly) lost to date when the dreaded monthly water weight struck again, so I'll just wait and see what next weekend brings.

Work is busy ... so much I want to get done before I go on seven weeks leave. It's a long time to be away so things keep popping up that I need to get done before I go. I sure can't wait! I suppose the time will fly by but I cannot wait to see friends and family I haven't seen in eight years. I have been wanting to go home for a few years now, can it be just a few weeks until I do just that?

It's been bitter cold and windy here lately, I almost feel like it's a Wisconsin winter! Soon I'll be going home to enjoy the end of summer and when I come back it'll be springtime. At least I get to miss one month of winter. I'll write more soon, it's late and I'm tired, I just wanted to check in quickly.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Down 124.5 lb, only 12.8 to go!

This week's weigh-in is 73.8 kg (162.7 lb), down .5 kg (1.1 lb) from last week and 56.5 kg (124.56 lb) to date. I have just 5.8 kg (12.79 lb) to goal!

We'll see what happens next week which may bring some monthly weight gain but so far that hasn't been a big deal as it was before ADF. By the way Gwen, I gave blood today and my blood pressure was just fine, so that's good. I had never heard of intermittent fasting causing high blood pressure but Gwen mentioned it so I am glad to have been checked today and to know all is well.

This was supposed to be a fast day but you have to eat before donating blood (and drink heaps of water) so I'm debating doing a double fast day to make up for the double feast day. So far I've been very lucky that every event we've had that required dining with friends and family has fallen on a feast day. It's no big deal if it doesn't, you just eat if you need to and fast the next day. I'm so used to the alternate day fasting that in truth I feel overly full now from having eaten two days in a row, so we'll see how we go. I may fast two days or just have dinner only on the second day, we'll see how I feel.

I've been dealing with periodic earaches off and on for a few months now. The doctor suggested nasal spray as a blocked nose can cause it, but if that didn't help it can be related to other things, possibly even TMJ. Well it hasn't helped. I used to get earaches when I was very young but not since then until now. I remember mom used something she called Sweet Oil to relieve the pain. Research tells me it's essentially the same as olive oil, but I think I should go back to the doctor first to rule out other issues before putting warm oil drops in my ear. It isn't frequent but rather painful when it does happen. We drove someone to a friend's near Sydney today and going up Mt Ousley brought on an earache that is still with me now. If a steep ascent driving can bring it on I would like to check with the doctor again before boarding a flight. I would think that would be worse! Wish me luck.

Good night ... I hope everyone in the States had a lovely 4th of July!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Down 7.8kg (17.2 lb) in a month of ADF!

Just over a month actually. I started ADF 22nd May, it's 27th June this morning and I weighed in at 74.3 kg (163.8 lb). That's down half a kilo (1.1 lb) from last week, 7.8 kg (17.2 lb) since I started ADF, and exactly 56 kg (123.46 lb) overall.  I can't believe I have just 6.3 kg (13.89 lb) to go to reach my initial goal. That's nothing, I'm almost there! Whether I make it before my trip or not doesn't matter ... I know that I WILL make it.

People at work have noticed I'm losing again ... I must admit that feels great! Still buying size 14AU or Medium tops and pants. I need a new pair of jeans, the 16s are loose on me. I tried the 14s yesterday and they fit great ... but they are so expensive here that I didn't buy them. I figure I'll be home in August, I can get Levi's at a decent price. These that I have from Just Jeans are nice, I really like them, but why spend $70 on another pair when I can probably get jeans for around $30 back home. Hell Levi's here can go for upwards of $150! That's crazy. No, I think I can wait another month for new jeans. Who knows, maybe I'll be size 12 by then!

I have been asked about pictures ... I don't think you'll see a big change yet since I had gone up a bit before starting ADF, but I will do some soon. Certainly while I'm back in the States. :)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Another drop, and smaller sizes in the US

Since I checked in late last week I have a smaller drop to report this weekend, but a drop none-the-less so I'm pleased. I am 74.8 kg (164.9 lb) which is only down .3 kg (.67 lb) from Wednesday but I will take it. That's 55.5 kg to date (122.36 lb) and only 6.8 kg (14.99 lb) to go.

You know I am really looking forward to my trip home, I can't wait to see family and friends again whom I haven't seen in eight years. But I'm also looking forward to clothes shopping! According to most websites, women's clothing sizes in the US run smaller than Australia (vanity sizing perhaps?) so while I'm currently a size 14, according to various sites I could be a size 10 in America! Vanity or not, I must say that sounds appealing!



I would also like to stock up on things that are much cheaper in the US like Levi's jeans and Playtex bras. Actually I can't even find my preferred bras here in Australia though they do carry some Playtex models. The good, high-end brand here is Triumph and they can cost over $60 so I still order from Amazon. Even with delivery charges they are much cheaper. Getting them at home should be cheaper still.

I plan to continue with ADF until my trip, do the best I can not to gain while at home for four weeks, then ADF to lose anything I might have gained at home. Once I hit a weight I'm happy with (which may be my goal or maybe lower) I can fast once or twice a week if necessary to maintain.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Down 121.7 lb (55.2 kg) ... loving ADF!

Sorry for the late post, I wanted to wait for the monthly water weight to pass as I suspected I’d see a nice drop today. I was thrilled to see 75.1 kg (165.57 lb) this morning. I’m just over the moon! That’s a loss of 1.1 kg (2.43 lb) from my last weigh-in and a total loss of 55.2 kg (121.7 lb) to date – and it means I have only 7.1 kg (15.65 lb) to go to reach goal! How cool is that?

I am really adapting well to alternate day fasting (ADF) and just amazed that I feel great and never get hungry. Even the morning after a fast day I often don’t eat until lunch time because I am just not hungry. I think I could easily go two days in a row but right now this is working for me.

A friend asked for more information about how I do the ADF – I’ve already mentioned most of this, but I thought I’d recap briefly. It really is just this easy – I only eat every other day. While many fasting plans say women can eat up to 500 calories on a fast day (600 for men), I find it much easier to eat nothing than to eat a little. That’s just me – if it works for you, by all means eat something. I do think if you’re going to eat on your fast day, it’s better to have all your calorie allowance at one meal rather than space it out throughout the day because it’s the long periods without food that keep your insulin levels low and kick your body into fat burning. So if you eat small amounts throughout the day that might interfere with that process. But as with everything, experiment and find what works for you. Complete fasting works best for me and I’m having great results.

Now fasting means just avoiding food – you can have all the calorie-free beverages you like on a fast day. It’s cold so I often have a mug of hot tea with a bit of stevia to sweeten, especially at what would normally be considered meal times – otherwise just water or diet soft drink. The next morning I may break my fast with an Atkins shake or small can of tuna (lemon and cracked pepper or zesty vinaigrette are my favourites), or I may have nothing at all until lunch time as I’m not usually hungry.

When my fast day falls on Sunday, I don’t want to have to cook that night but I still need something for lunch on Monday – so I have two standard go-to meals to choose from. I can either grab some Chicken Tikka bites from Woolworths (they’re meant to be an appetizer for four, but they’re low carb so I just have them all) or I mix a can of no-drain tuna with some chopped celery, onion, pickle and mayonnaise and serve it on some salad greens and tomato. Either way I grab a pack of veggies from the store to have on the side which just needs to be microwaved a few minutes – sometimes it’s fresh pumpkin chunks which are really tasty, though a bit higher in carbs, and sometimes it’s frozen veggies in cheese sauce. These are quick, easy lunches with no cooking the night before.

Throughout the Dr Poon phase of my weight loss I cooked large meals so I’d have lots of leftovers to eat throughout the week. But with eating every other day, I can’t really make something that gives me five or six portions leftover unless it’s something that freezes well because it would take me twice as long to go through the leftovers. So I tend to cook just two dishes each week that make four portions each, and that gives me lunches and dinners for feast days. I’m not following strict Dr Poon on my feast days, though I do often make the same meals I did while on that plan, but my meals throughout the week are still low carb. When a feast day falls on Saturday I go out to lunch with my hubby and have whatever I like. Last weekend we went out for Thai, and I had chicken satay. I only ate a small portion of the rice that came with it, but otherwise I didn’t worry about the carb count for that one meal and just thoroughly enjoyed my lunch. It’s very freeing and so far has not triggered any cravings – and hubby and I are both very happy to renew our tradition of going out for lunch together on Saturdays, even if it’s only every other week.

That’s really it – I must confess that I haven’t been doing any exercise other than my daily walks, mostly because it’s winter and when I get home I just can’t wait to jump into my warmest sweats and relax. But then I’ve always known that while exercise is very good for you and has many benefits, weight loss really isn’t one of them. There are many experts in the field saying that very same thing these days, and that’s also been my own experience. I do still get in at least one walk every day, and if it’s rainy or too cold I just do it on my treadmill, but that’s about it.

Anyway, that’s it for now – I’ll check in again soon.