Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Week 42, 174 lbs.

Yep, I went up a bit this week.  Life and my female cycle got in the way of my progress, but it won't keep me down for long! 

I went to a conference where I didn't have easy access to IP-friendly foods and followed that up with a visit with family in Austin.  The few deviations from program (two days before weigh-in), limited water intake, little exercise and "that time of the month" had me expecting a gain.  I lived up to those expectations

I was pleased that it was only two pounds and am working harder this week to make up for the delay in progress.  I don't want to be on phase one forever. 

The increase in my weight brings to mind some comments and questions that have come up lately and I felt it was time to address life after dieting.

"Our life is what our thoughts make it" -Marcus Aurelius

Recently, someone I didn't know very well asked me about the diet.  Like me, she's struggled with her weight most of her life and expressed frustration that she's now heavier than she's ever been.  When I explained how Ideal Protein works and the results I've experienced she said, "Yeah, sure.  Every diet I've ever tried has worked and then I go off the diet and my weight balloons back up!" And that was that.  She totally rejected possible future success based on past failures. 

People who knew me when I was at my peak weight compliment me on how I look now and follow the compliment with "I hope you can keep it off!" or "Do you think you'll gain any of your weight back?"

The diet is just a tool for weight reduction.  I am completely responsible for what happens to me after I am off the program.  I know that if I go back to old behaviors and eating habits after I am off Ideal Protein, I'll go back to being overweight and miserable.  The future is up to me!

Along with dieting, I am working hard to change the way my mind works. My perceptions about my abilities, who I am, the way I live my life and the way I eat are all changing.  I am embracing those changes with both arms! 

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while may be sensing a recurring theme in my posts.  For those of you who are new here, here it is:

Your thoughts can make or break you.

If you want to lose weight, you can if you believe you can.  If you want to keep it off for the rest of your life, you can do that, too!   If you believe you will gain weight after you've stopped dieting - you will.  Your success is determined by your mindset and willingness to change.

I choose to believe in myself and focus on success rather than failure.  I also accept responsibility for my own life and actions. The behaviors and lifestyle that put me on the path to obesity were not serving me well and it is crucial for me to change my lifestyle to one that's more balanced, healthy and completely different from what it was before.

Let's face it, our body is the vehicle we travel in from birth until death. It's important to take care of our bodies and our journey through life is a lot more fun in a clean-burning, fast-moving vehicle than in a slow, out-of-shape clunker!

It is crucial for me to change my thoughts and lifestyle in order to keep the weight from coming back.  If I was not willing to change then I would be doomed to going back to who I was a year ago. 

It is my intention to spend the rest of my life in a fit, healthy body!  I believe I can do it, too!

Friday, March 22, 2013

A funny thing happened on the way to the internet....

This morning I was scrolling through FaceBook, checking on what my friends were up to when I came across this photo. What a surprise! It was posted by Wilson Family Chiropractic, the place that administers the Ideal Protein Diet locally and where I go to weigh in each week. 

I cannot stop laughing at my "now" photo!  Several photos were taken when this one was captured. Towards the end of the session I was goofing off with the photographer (Hi Zadie) and she took this pic.  I can't believe the center used the silly photo, but as my friend Andrea said, "The expression says it all"  and she's right. 

The difference in expressions says a lot about how I felt then and how I feel now.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Week 41, 172 lbs.

One of the two bikes I use to commute to work.
My weigh-in was on Tuesday instead of Monday again this week so I am late in posting.... but I have amazing news!

For the first time in what feels like a gazillion years I am no longer considered obese!  When my body fat ratio was measured yesterday the number that came up on the computer was yellow instead of the orange I am used to seeing.  When I saw that glowing yellow 31% number I realized that my fat ratio is just inside the "acceptable" range! 

I wanted to dance, jump up and down, pirouette like a mad ballerina - my fat ratio is in the healthy range and I am getting very close to my goal!!  I will be off phase I of Ideal Protein in the very near future!!  I would like to get a few more points down on the fat ratio, somewhere around 25-26% - but we'll see what happens in the coming weeks.

I've been getting a lot of questions lately about whether I am tired of the diet, now that I've been on it for 10 months. My answer is that I don't allow myself to think that way.

I have a job to do.  The Ideal Protein diet is the tool I've chosen to get the job done.  I feel I've been extremely successful in accomplishing this task.  If I felt the diet was a chore, some kind of deprivation or something unpleasant, I would have quit a long time ago (like I did with other diets).

The diet is a means to an end and it hasn't been that hard to follow.  I like a lot of the foods involved in the program and have experienced improved health and attitude since I started.

My life has changed in so many amazing ways, and all I did was change the way I perceived myself and the world around me. It amazes me when I notice in the course of my everyday life how much my perceptions have changed over the past couple of years.

For example.  I hopped on my bike this morning for my commute to work.  I had a great ride about halfway there.  The morning air was crisp, I had a good cadence going and I felt like I was flying.... until the chain came off the bike.

I ended up walking my bike the rest of the way into work.  In the past I would have complained, "Oh, this is just typical!" and let it set the tone for the rest of my day.

This morning I took it in stride, not exactly happy about the chain coming off my bike, but not upset, either.  I enjoyed a brisk walk instead of a brisk ride and thought to myself that a breakdown on a bike is a lot more convenient than a breakdown with a car.

I could take the bike with me the rest of the way - I would have had to find a tow truck or a safe place to park if I were in a car. A slipped chain is something I can fix myself, too! 

Life is what you make of it, isn't it?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Week 40, 174 lbs.

Hooray!  A couple more pounds down and a smaller number on the fat percentage, too.

I finally received the new driver's license in the mail and instead of pairing it to my old photo, which I've done in an earlier post, I thought I'd pair it with another photo I came across this week.

On the left is my old passport photo - I found it when I was desperately trying to find something else in my files.   The picture was taken back in 1997 as I was just starting to pack on the pounds.  As you can see I am slimmer today than I was back then. I am winning a battle I've been fighting for 16 years! 

An old friend who hasn't seen me since about 1996-97 asked me if I was slimmer or about the same size as when they last saw me.  I answered that I thought I was smaller but wasn't sure.  Well, here's the proof - there are a lot of old friends who have never seen me at this size.  I'm quickly approaching my old high school weight - which is mind blowing!

My husband and I are planning a trip to the Scarborough Renaissance Festival near Dallas in May, so I went through the costumes in my closet to see if I could get back into some of the old costumes I "outgrew," only to discover everything was HUGE on me. 

This included the first really nice bodice I had custom made in 1995.  Back then I asked the seamstress to make it  two sizes smaller than my measurements to hug my female curves and create the ever-desirable wench cleavage.  I wore this bodice for two years before I got so large I couldn't wear it anymore.  The cute little tapestry and leather number hung losely and made me look like Olive Oyl instead of emphasizing my curves. 

So before I leave for the festival in May I am going to have to purchase a bodice for my new, shapely frame!

And speaking of buying something to fit my new frame:  When I first started on the Ideal Protein diet I would reward myself with something fun with every 10 lb. loss.  Sometimes I would be a manicure/pedicure and other times it would be a new pair of pants. I fell out of the habit at some point and haven't rewarded myself in a while.

The car I've driven for the last several years was falling apart.  I told myself a while back that when I was finished with phase I of Ideal Protein, I'd reward myself with a new car.  Well, due to certain circumstances I decided to make the new car my reward for losing more than 100 lbs.  I figure 114 is a good place to say HOORAY and get a new car.

The new car is a MINI Cooper Clubman - A small, sporty car to go with my small sporty frame!! And the photo below reminds me, those pants are too big!  Time to stop cinching them up with a belt (it makes them pooch out!) and get something that fits me!

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Opinions of Others...

o·pin·ion [uh-pin-yuh-n] 

1. a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty.
2.  a personal view,attitude, or appraisal.

I'm a big fan of Wayne Dyer and the wisdom he shares with the world. One of the things I've heard him say that stuck with me is, "It is my intention to live my life independently of the good opinion of others."

Those words rang deeply in my soul the first time I heard them.  I heard another quote, and have used it on this blog before and it says, "Your opinion of me is none of my business."
There are millions - gazillions - of opinions out there about any given subject.  Opinions are personal to the people who have them.  They are judgements that are seldom based in fact.  Every person I know has a different opinion of me - some good, some not so good.

Choosing to give value to someone else's opinion of me when I was young is part of what put me on the path to obesity.  When a kid in my class called me ugly, my second grade teacher called me hopeless and stupid or a friend's little brother called me fat (when I wasn't) at the dinner table I internalized those words, held them close to my aching heart.

I also tied myself in knots trying to please others and make people like me.  That approach to life, along with a battered self esteem are what manifested in binges, sneak eating and overeating in general.

Yesterday an acquaintance told me I was getting too thin and that if I kept on this diet I would make myself sick. She added that I was just going to "dry up and blow away."  I responded with, "Thank you for your concern but I am just fine." 

As I walked away from the lady, someone who overheard the exchange pulled me aside and said, "Keep doing what you're doing.  I think you're looking great."
Two people looking at me at the same time had extremely different opinions of my weight loss and how I'm doing.

What's important is how *I* feel I am doing.  I'm the person holding all the facts.  I know what my weight is, what my fat percentage is and how I feel physically.   I know I am not weak or emaciated.  I also know how truly heavy I used to be and that I am very close to achieving a healthy weight for my own frame.

This is why I've said on this blog - time and again - that the most important step I took in reclaiming a healthy body was falling in love with myself.  I like who I am, regardless of my size.  As a result I trust my own judgment and am treating myself with respect. (And no, this doesn't mean I am full of myself or all puffed up with a super-ego.  I just like who I am.)  My own knowledge of the truth about myself will keep me from doubting my journey when someone says I'm in danger of drying up.

Trust and believe in yourself and you'll be able to achieve the miraculous!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Week 39, 176 lbs.

Me in the buckskin jacket my mom
wore in high school.  One of the vintage
treasures I've never been able to wear before.
Hooray!  I finally jumped off the plateau!!  Both my weight and fat ratio dropped, bringing me closer and closer to my goal of a healthy body fat percentage!

I feel so fortunate to be working with the people at Wilson Family Chiropractic on this diet.  The center has an upbeat, encouraging staff and offers a lot of services that many Ideal Protein centers don't offer.  One of the services they offer is the machine that measures the body fat percentage.  I think the body fat percentage is much more important to gauge than my body weight.   

A friend recently contacted me with questions about the diet and asked me what her 11 week weight loss goal should be.  The center that offers IP in her area gets participants to set a goal and if they don't reach that goal they pay extra money for another 5 weeks to be in the program. 

This sounds nuts and from some of the other things my friend said, it sounded like a totally different program than I was on. (It also sounded a lot more expensive than where I go.) The center that I am involved in actually discouraged me from setting a goal and I think this is a much healthier approach to dieting.  The idea is to get healthy, to feel better, to learn how to eat and not obsess with the numbers too much.  I told my friend to find another center!

It took me a long time to shift my focus from the number on the scale to the actual body fat percentage.  I think if someone at Wilson had asked me to set a goal for my first 11 weeks on the program I would have 1. set an unrealistic goal and 2. got discouraged and quit the program if I hadn't reached that goal in the set amount of time.

There have been a lot of times during this journey when I've had to shift my perceptions and goals.  There have been weeks when I didn't drop weight as fast as I expected or completely went off track.

In other news, I've been asked to serve as a model during a charity fashion show this fall.  I nearly fell over when I was asked.  Me? A model?  I never considered it before ... so, of course I said yes!!  Seems I'm much more willing to strut my stuff than I used to be!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Weigh in delay....

Hi Folks!

My weigh in was delayed due to a last-minute trip to Corpus Christi yesterday.... I will have a fresh post for you tomorrow morning!!

I'm expecting to report progress!!