Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Week 38, 180 lbs.

My drivers license picture - old and new
Plateaus can be frustrating .... and I'd be frustrated if I'm not constantly reminded of how far I've come.  Not only that, but each day I am seeing a change in the way clothes fit or how my body looks. 

It's hard to get down when I feel this good!

This week I got my drivers license renewed. The lady at the DPS who processed my renewal took my photo and then did a double take at her computer monitor. 

She turned her monitor around so I could see it and there in bold color was my old photo next to the photo she just took.  The lady at the next station looked over and said, "What did she do, have a Lifestyle lift?" 

I was going to wait until I got my permanent license with a color photo so I would have a better "now" photo to show, but really wanted to share this comparison - the difference is just too dramatic to wait!

Caroline and Crystal, my coaches, just got back from an Ideal Protein seminar in New Orleans and they had all sorts of new info to share and I am glad they did!  Caroline pointed out that even with my being on what seems like a plateau for the last several weeks that my shape is still changing.  She's right.  While my weight has been at a virtual stand-still, the flesh that's been hanging off my arms, stomach, thighs and other parts is springing into shape.  My waist continues to get smaller, along with my thighs.

So even though I am not seeing the huge drops in weight that I saw when I first started the program, I am getting healthier with each passing day.

I hope y'all have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Week 37, 181 lbs.... but I'm celebrating!!

When I started Ideal Protein, not only did I weigh 288 lbs, I also had a body fat percentage of 48%.  Half of my body was fat!

The pounds did increase this week. I think it's because I had a vigorous bike ride earlier in the day and I seem to weigh heavier after rides (I have no idea why) and after the ride I drank a lot of water. I think I still had a lot of that water in my system at weigh-in time.

Even with the weight increase my body fat ratio dropped ... so I am considering this week a successful dieting week! 

Above is the print out from the machine my clinic
uses to measure my body fat.  As you can see, the
fat ratio has been steadily going down.  The chart
above shows the various ranges of body fat ...
I'm aiming for somewhere between 25 - 27% and
am almost to the "acceptable" range!!

At 33.26%, I am just a couple of percentage points away from being in the "acceptable" body fat range!

I have two relatives on the Ideal Protein diet in another town and that center doesn't measure body fat ratio or hydration the way my center does.  

I think it's important for folks on this diet to know that when you're not showing progress in pounds and you've stuck to the plan, especially when you're getting close to your goal - that changes for the better are still happening.  Don't get frustrated!

On weigh-in days I always try to wear the same type of clothes and stick to a set routine.  That way, I am not caught weighing in with a full tummy or wearing a heavy pair of jeans when I usually weigh with an empty tummy and a light pair of slacks.  I want to be as consistent as possible.

This week, I didn't stick to my usual routine and it contributed to a higher number on the scale than expected - and if I didn't have a little gadget checking my fat ratio, I probably would have left the clinic feeling like I did something wrong.  Luckily, the little gadget was there, assuring me I was doing fine.

Besides, I went clothes shopping again this week and was once again amazed at what I was able to get into!  This morning I put on a brand-new size medium (MEDIUM!!!) top with a pair of size 14 crop pants that are getting a bit on the baggy side!!  I'm doing just fine!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Week 36, 177 lbs.

FINALLY!!!  I was thrilled to step on the scale and see I am down another 5 lbs. The fat percentage is down, too.  I am finally out of the 180s and it's time to celebrate!!!  

A five pound drop is especially significant considering the art center where I work hosted both a Wine Share AND a fundraiser devoted to chocolate this past week. If I had started the week dreading these events or complaining about being on a diet when these events took place,  I don't think I would have dropped an ounce.  I went into the events with a plan in mind and dealt with them.

During the Chocolate Fantasy, our center's annual fundraiser, I did sample a few small items on the "all you can eat chocolate buffet" but I limited myself to special items - award winning items in the cooking contest - and wasn't just stuffing things in my mouth because they were there. 

I also had a glass of wine during the Wine Share - a small amount of my favorite type of wine (last year I over indulged) - and it was plenty.  After both events I worked a vigorous bike ride into my schedule to balance out the extra calories consumed.

A table of cooking contest entries during the center's Chocolate Fantasy
fundraiser. Imagine table after table of stuff like this and that's what I
faced this weekend - and emerged victorious!

Chocolate and wine by themselves aren't bad.  It's our attitudes towards treats that get us into trouble.  What I am trying to do, now that I am getting close to the end of Phase I, is develop a healthier relationship with the foods I used to gorge myself on.... and I am amazed at how much I've changed in such a short time.

I'm still processing the events of the last two weeks and have been listening to comments from people I encounter every day, and it amazes me how weak we think we are.  For example, I allowed someone's unkind treatment throw me into an eating binge and it took me two weeks to undo the damage of that binge.  I put someone else in control of my life.  I allowed someone I don't respect or agree with in a place of power and that's not a healthy way to conduct my life.  I am so much more than one person's opinon.

We do the same thing with food.  I recently made a friend of mine angry.  My friend is a former model who has never had issues with weight in her life. She has been gaining weight recently  and for the first time in our decades-long friendship, I am smaller than she is.  When she saw my transformed shape we started talking about Ideal Protein and what the program involves.    Her response to the restrictions placed during Phase I was "Oh, I could never give up cheese."  

What made her mad was when I said that there was a time when I felt I couldn't give up cheese either but "when you get too heavy for your own knees, you'll give up just about anything to walk again." I got an earful after making that statement!
A picture of me that was published in
a local paper this week.  It was taken
during the Wine Share.  Yes, I did drink
that glass of wine and discovered I was
capable of moderation!

The issue isn't if cheese is bad for you or not, the issue is the power you give it.  Whether it's chocolate, cheese, licquor, or bacon wrapped jalapenos - if you are telling yourself you "can't live without it," you have made that food more powerful than yourself.  Think about it.

The reason I put this blog out here is to show that no matter how heavy you are (I have now dropped a total of 111 lbs!), no matter your age, lifestyle, etc. you have within you the power to get control of your weight.  You can do it!

There was a time in my life when I thought my weight was a lost cause. Today I am living proof that everyone has the ability within themselves to conquer excessive weight. You just have to get your head in the right place and have the willingness to change. Once you convince yourself you can do it, the power is yours.

I have friends who are overweight and are unhappy with their size, but don't think Ideal Protein is the program for them.  They often feel they have to explain themselves to me, as if I am in some kind of position of judgement over their life path.
I only know what has worked for me.  If you don't like the sound of the diet I'm on, then find your own path.  Quit complaining about the shape you're in, take responsibility for the situation and do something about it!

Like I've said before, there is no magic weight fairy out there who will do the work for you.  You don't even have to go on a drastic diet or exercise program to do it.  Just change one habit, or adopt a new one.  Start out with small steps and ease into changing your life.  When I first decided to lose weight, I started biking to work.  I wasn't dieting or doing anything else.  I just biked.

I picked an activity that I enjoyed and worked it into my schedule.  I biked to work for a solid year before even attempting a diet and lost 25 lbs. during that time.  It was also during that year that I worked hard on changing the way I thought about myself. 

When you decide to go on a diet and you REALLY can't do without (insert favorite food here), then find a diet that will let you eat that treat and work within that plan.  In my mind, the cheese and chocolate led to my ballooning weight and I needed to remove them from my diet in order to gain perspective and a healthier relationship with those foods. 

When I am finished dieting, those foods will still be available .... and I've already found ways to deal with them when I am back in "the real world!" 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Week 35, 182 lbs.

It all stayed the same.  Both the number on the scale and my fat ratio stayed put.  No ground lost, no ground gained.

I was frustrated at first.  I was on plan all week and was ready to see some progress, especially after the last couple of weeks.  But then I remembered this happened before, right before the end of my female cycle and figure I must be retaining water or something.  So I am going to hang in there and see what happens next week.

Instead of pouting and getting upset for not having any progress to report, I am celebrating how far I've come, how much I've changed, since starting Ideal Protein.  Here's what I am celebrating:
  • 106 lbs. of fat off my body!!!!!!
  • Pain-free knees
  • General sense of well-being
  • Improved health!  The body is functioning as it should again!
  • More energy to make it through the day
  • Looking good in my clothes
  • Ability to cross my legs at the knee when sitting
  • Fitting into theater seats, seat belts, restroom stalls and anywhere else "average" sized people can fit.
  • Improved confidence and sense of self
  • Knowing, without an ounce of doubt, that I will never be fat again
How can I feel down after listing such wonderful accomplishments? 

It won't be long before I am finally off Phase I and ready to move into the Phase II of Ideal Protein.  That's when I begin to focus on how to eat when I am back in the "real world" - almost a scary thought. 

But hey, if I can shed 106 lbs. in eight months, I can do anything!