Grudgingly

I got on the scale today to see how I’m doing getting those 5 vacation pounds off. First it flashed the same exact weight as last week, then it grudgingly flashed its final answer: Down a pound.

Damn. I expected two or three, because that’s what a normal result would be. I drastically changed my eating and cleaned it up – no cheats or treats this week. I drastically increased my exercise (from zero to daily, but not all they way back up to pre-vacation levels due to the cold I also got on vacation). All that for a measly, grudging pound.

I guess my previous goal of losing those vacation pounds in two weeks needs to be revised. It looks like I’ll be lucky to lose them in 5 weeks.

In case you were wondering, this is what a broken metabolism looks like. I have no doubt that my lifetime of dieting, then gaining, then dropping again have completely fucked my metabolism and now dropping anything at all is going to be a grand struggle. But, as always, what other choice do I have but to keep shoving that boulder up this mountain? I guess simultaneously work on loving and accepting my body as it is now. As it has become through all these years of trying to figure out how to keep and maintain it.

I know less now than I ever have. Don’t ask me for weight loss advice, it’s clear I don’t know shit, and what I’ve done not only hasn’t worked long-term, but has screwed things up beyond repair.

Week 4 Numbers: More Data Acquired. Dammit.

I stayed on target all week, no slips or eating off-plan, as I expect of myself. I had 50 servings of fruits/veggies. I had 37 meal replacements. I burned 5,540 (!) calories in physical activity. I averaged a net caloric intake of ~614 calories per day. As you can see, I met my exercise goal and exceeded it (goal was to burn 5000 calories this week).

You might expect that I had a fantastic result on the scale this week. If you do you either haven’t been coming around here long, or haven’t been paying attention. I lost a half pound. The math says I should have lost 2 at the very least. So, I stand by my previous statement about a slow metabolism and my disparaging comments about the Mayo Clinic (wankers). That brings my total this push to 7.5 pounds down. Woohoo I guess.

My coach says it’s probably a case of “the check is in the mail” and it’ll show up next week. Maybe it is, and maybe it isn’t. The thing is, when it is, I usually don’t get both weeks worth of payoff next week. And that’s some frustrating BS let me tell you.

To work SO HARD this week for so very little to show for it would normally be massively depressing were I not already battling some epic level depression this week. As it is, there really wasn’t much further for things to drop emotionally, so I was like, “Mmm hmm. Sure, why not?” when I stepped off the scale.

My plan for the coming week is to scale it back a bit. Obviously reaching new highs on the exercise portion of the equation is not helpful, so I will reel it back a bit to a level that has worked before. I think that 3500 to 4000 calories per week is really my “sweet spot” where exercise is concerned. It’s the level where my body needs to be to maintain or lose. Going much higher hasn’t produced desirable results so that’s an experiment I don’t need to repeat.

Other than that – please send cute pictures of kittens. Bunnies or puppies would also be acceptable.

First Week Results

I know you’re all dying to know how I did this week. I did great! I stayed on my program without a single slip! I had 48 servings of fruits/veggies! I had 36 meal replacements. I burned 3,795 calories in physical activity (the minimum is 2000, so I blew that minimum out of the water!). I averaged a net caloric intake of ~800 calories per day (that’s net – total I was averaging 1300-1500 a day so quit clutching yer pearls it’s not a starvation diet).

And for all my efforts I was rewarded with a single pound loss. Added to the first half week loss my total loss so far is 2.3 pounds. Whoopdefuckindoo.

FML.

I am accustomed to seeing a big loss the first week. This was not that. This is possibly the smallest, most pathetic loss I’ve ever seen in the first week. This is depressing because it always slows down after the first week. :-O

I was super depressed about it for a while, but then I squared my shoulders and reminded myself that I signed on for 12 weeks, so I’m staying the course and keeping on target to see this bloody thing through for 12 weeks. Regardless of what I see on the scale.

In twelve weeks I’ll either have lost the 10-20 goddamned pounds I wanted to lose, or I won’t, but either way I certainly won’t have gained any weight in that time. I fucking hope. *crosses fingers*

I could definitely use your best pep talk though, if you have one spare lying around…

Week 18 Results

We’re well into transition now. This past week we were down to 3 meal replacements per day, starting tomorrow it’ll be 2 per day. That means we have to replace those with real food. Normally this would be great but the Optifast system of exchanges is so complicated and non-intuitive that I find it quite intimidating. I was just about able to keep things straight this past week, but the upcoming week…I just don’t know. I may have to staple the list of exchange units I’m supposed to eat each day to my forehead or something just to get through the day.

  • Change this period: -1 pound
  • Total change so far: -45 pounds
  • Current weight: 189.5 pounds

I didn’t expect or intend to lose another pound this week. I expected that with the added food (and the glass of wine I had Saturday night and Monday night) I’d be maintaining this week. The only thing I can put this loss down to is that there may have been a couple of days where the math and complexity of the system eluded me and I just threw up my hands and gave up and went hungry. I probably missed a couple of units of dairy here and there because I just don’t like skim milk and non-fat yogurt enough to have a cup of it each day. (Bad news: this week we’re supposed to add another exchange unit of dairy. Ugh.)

So I’m a little bit worried about the upcoming week. I think that maintenance programs that people are meant to follow for the rest of their lives should be SIMPLE and INTUITIVE. This is the opposite of that and I’m struggling to see how anybody could do this forever. I’m very much looking forward to being done here so I can go back to what I used to do when I was maintaining with HMR: 7-9 servings of fruits and veggies every day, writing down my calories, and burning at least 2000 calories in exercise each week. Hard to get simpler than that.

The Countdown

Just a few more days until I can eat real food again – in a limited fashion, but real food nonetheless. I’m ambivalent about it because on the one hand, I would like to drop a few more pounds, although I realize that I will likely continue to drop a few more through the transition period. I’m worried about the maintenance of what I’ve lost and that I’ll be too easily tempted off the path of righteousness – I always worry, it’s what I do best, I think. And on the other hand, boy it will be nice to have a less constrained social life. I really miss deciding on the spur of the moment to go out to dinner with my husband, or to mix up a cocktail after a hard day. Or having brunch with friends on a weekend.

What I won’t miss, though, is the crankiness. It’s easy to only write about the great stuff – to document the success and the progress, but you know what else? My husband and I have been a bit more short-tempered than usual these last few months. We’ve been snapping at each other more, bickering over stupid little things more. My husband’s impatience behind the wheel has been epic because being hungry all the time? It’s hard. Seeing him short-tempered and easily angered has been especially hard because it’s not at all his nature. He’s usually the most patient, considerate, thoughtful person I know. Feeling myself lose my cool much more often than is normal has left me feeling ashamed more than I would like to admit.

As apprehensive as I may be about the end of the program and the beginning of the rest of our lives watching our waistlines, I’m happy that this hard few months is almost over.

Aches and Pains Along the Path

I’ve found myself feeling nauseated off and on for the last week, maybe a bit longer. I’m not sure what’s going on, but it’s demoralizing. I’ve starting drinking more green tea when I feel it coming on in the hopes it can help. One of the downsides of a program like the one I’m on is that I’m severely limited in the number of options I have for dealing with an upset stomach. Foods that would normally help are almost entirely off-limits. I’ve been taking Tums but that only has a limited effect.

My husband has been suffering from near-constant gout attacks. The poor man has lived with gout for most of his adult life, and let me tell you for the record that all the warnings about what foods to avoid to reduce the number of gout attacks you get is utter BS. It seems not to matter a whit what he eats or doesn’t. I assure he’s eaten NONE of the foods on the “avoid” list in the last 2 months yet he’s still suffering regularly – almost constantly – with some inflamed joint. Gout is an interesting beastie, I’ve discovered. I knew nothing of it prior to meeting my darling husband, but I find now that it’s not like most diseases. It’s not contagious – I can’t catch it from him. It doesn’t respond to changes in diet (as I just mentioned). Drinking lots of water makes no difference to how he suffers. It doesn’t much respond to typical OTC painkillers. Frankly, I’m starting to think that it’s genetic – either you have it or you don’t. And if you don’t you should thank your stars.

We’re more than halfway there. We’re committed to seeing this thing through to the end, despite the inconvenience and pain. It’s hard to argue with the results.

This week I’ve been working at getting more intense exercise than I did last week. So far so good, several runs down now and I packed a gym bag and brought it to work with me today. I have a stretch in the mid-afternoon where I can go get good and sweaty.

Week 7 results, in which I am a bit down

This week has been tough on the exercise front for me. For a variety of reasons most of the exercise I have gotten has been walking. Walking is great exercise…but I know through years of experience that it’s not enough for my body. So today I remembered that the campus I work at has a gym, so I packed a gym back and went there in the early afternoon. It had been so long since I put together a gym bag that I forgot to pack my contacts, but otherwise I was good to go. I ran for 3 miles on the treadmill, which went fine. FINE. Not my favorite but it needed to get done so I did it.

Tonights results:

  • Change this week: -1 lb
  • Total so far: -25.5 (more than halfway there! Go me!)
  • My husband was down 2 this week for a total of 33.5.

There can be a tendency to be down when one has such a week as I have had – only lost a pound! Actually that doesn’t bother me at all – any loss is good, and those pounds add up over time – I’m playing the long game. There could even be a tendency to be a little envious of my husband’s loss being greater than mine so far. Again, I understand that the male metabolism gives him an advantage, and also he was starting from a higher weight than me, so of course he’s going to lose faster/more. No, the thing that has me down is that we are both working equally hard and he’s getting all the recognition!! Everywhere we go, everyone we see is all, “Wow, C, you look great man, you’re really losing weight!” And not a single person has noticed or mentioned or commented on my loss yet unbidden. Apparently you can’t see 25 pounds at all on a frame such as mine. When you do the work to lose 25 pounds, it’s kind of a letdown to discover that you could have not even bothered for all the good it has done your appearance!

Curse him for carrying all his weight in his face and belly! And curse my stupid body for evenly distributing it so well you can’t see it at all! Pah! I can see the loss! *stalks off*