Yup - I've lost Weight

4:11 PM

Over the past 18 months I've lost about 80 lbs.  Honestly, I didn't think my blog readers would notice -  After all, who's paying attention to my waistline!?  LOL!   I’m making this post because several people have messaged me and asked what’s up with my weight.  So, here’s the story:

As my 50th birthday approached I decided that it was time to do a better job of taking care of lifestyle and my waistline.


I'm not here to lecture about any specific plan, product or food.  I've spent the last 18 months trying to figure out all of the things that would work for me for long term success.  I'll tell you what I do.  If anything I do works for you - GREAT!  If not, not.


For This Project I Changed:
Sleep Patterns
Thinking
Exercise
Relationship with healthcare providers
Food

Sleep
I have never been a great sleeper.  I like to stay up late and get up early.  To improve my health I set an alarm to start by bedtime routine at 8:30pm every night.  I might not actually go to sleep until 9:30, but the process always begins at 8:30.  That means phone off, face washed, etc.  I take an herbal sleep supplement or have a cup of tea.  I set everything up so that I’m ready to fall asleep.  This also includes setting the sleep timer on my TV.  I like to fall asleep watching tv.  Now it turns itself off after I’ve dozed off.

Thinking
I’ve consistently had positive self talk regardless of my circumstances.  I was never a fat=bad, thin = good type person.  (I think I’m adorable regardless of the number on the scale.)  I needed to change the way I thought about my body as it relates to food.  The idea that my weight didn’t matter was errant thinking for me.  As the number on the scale crept up so did my blood pressure and my blood sugar.  “A little treat is fine” stopped being an okay way to think when I was having “a little treat” several times a day. 

I haven’t stopped snacking.  I’ve changed what I snack on.  I’ve also mostly eliminated the need for snacks by improving my overall nutrition.  (I had NO IDEA that improving what I ate would mean that I wouldn’t want/need snacks).

Exercise
I was never a gym girl.  To me a treadmill is a walk to nowhere.  However - when I started my better health journey I joined a gym.  I only walked on the treadmill.  I only walked VERY SLOWLY with no incline.  Finally, I got good headphones and I binge watched tv shows on my phone while I walked.


I did not make friends at the gym and I didn’t talk to other people.  I simple showed up, watched my show while walking very slowly and I went home. I walked 3x a week for a couple of months.  My only goal was to build the habit of consistency.

My relationship to exercise has changed A LOT over the last 18 mos.  In the beginning I HATED it, but I did it.  It’s such a habit now that I miss it when I can’t do it.  I’ve even run a couple of 5k races! 

These days I walk and jog (mostly walk) about 3 miles a day.  I always walk in nature now.  I explore parks, trails and various neighborhoods around town.  Also, these days I take nature pictures on my phone while walking.  I also listened to true crime podcasts.


Walking helped me to lose my first 8 lbs!  With a little bit of weight loss success under my belt, I made an appointment with my doctor.

Healthcare Providers

Until recently I only went to the doctor once a year and I hated every minute of it.  I rarely got my bloodwork done.  I figured as long as I felt good everything was fine.  At the end of 2018 I asked my GYN for a referral to a nutritionist.  That year I say my primary care provider and got all required routine screenings.  When the blood and other test results came back, I read them. My A1C (blood sugar) was very high.  My blood pressure was high.  My weight was very high (242 lbs) at 5’1.5“.  Frankly speaking I was obese.  Prior to that screening I didn’t know all of my numbers for sure, but I knew they probably weren’t great.

I worked with a nutritionist to come up with a beginners plan that I could live with.  It was VERY basic.  She didn’t put me on a “diet”.  She educated me about healthy eating and told me what to reduce and or avoid.  I reduced sugar, processed food and fast food.  I added in more liquids (coffee, tea, water).  I started tracking my food using an app on my phone.  I decided that if it goes in my mouth, it goes in my phone app.  Seeing what I was eating helped me a lot!

Plus, I started taking LOTS of pictures of myself.  I decided that I wanted to have lots of “before” shots.


Also, I didn’t tell anybody about my plans.  I quietly changed things and nobody noticed.  I didn’t want to hear from naysayers.  I didn’t want outside support.  I just wanted to do my thing and be left alone.  PLUS, if it all failed, nobody would know but me.

IMPORTANT NOTE: I lost about 40 lbs before anybody began to notice a change.  I’d lost about 60 lbs before it was common knowledge that I’d changed anything at all.  It took a very long time for people to recognize anything.  Mostly people would say “you cut your hair-you look so different with shirt hair!” LOL!

As my weight shifted, I kept in close touch with my nutritionist.  She lowered my calorie target and suggested that I increase exercise.  She also suggested that I weight myself DAILY!  What a terrifying idea!  But I did it.  And I tracked my weight fluxations.  Weighing daily took away my fear of the scale.

  

There where LONG periods of time where the scale did not move.  I just kept quietly doing what I needed to do (walking, tracking my food, drinking water, getting plenty of rest).


Food

I’m listing food last because it’s the easiest and the hardest part of the journey.  Once I got all of the other habits in place, food was easy.  When I’m well rested food is not an issue at all.  If I’m emotional or tired food is a BIG DEAL!  Being full is a comfort to me.  When I’m worn out I need a LOT more comfort.

These days I eat a high protein, healthy carb diet.  Lots of lean meat, grains, fruits and veggies.  I no longer crave rice, bread or potatoes; though I do have pizza from time to time.  I limit sugar.  I make a TON of homemade food (Greek yogurt, granola, pizza, cold brew coffee and tea) but that’s not new.

I cook my family the foods they like.  If they want treats, I make them.  Sometimes I have a bite.  Other times not.  I find that when I’m taking good care of myself with exercise, rest and positive self talk I don’t really crave junk food.

It’s been 18 mos and I’m still learning new things about good health.  I’m sure that there is a LOT more for me to discover.

My numbers today:

Weight 162lbs (80 lbs of weight loss)

Height 5’2” (after i lost weight I gained half an inch)

A1C - 4.4 (normal)

Blood pressure - 111/76 (normal)

All of my levels are normal according to my PCP.

  




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2 comments

  1. Fantastic journey you are on!Kudos to you for deciding to get healthy and doing it quietly and with dedication. Making healthy decisions and sticking with them can be so difficult at the beginning but the payoffs are so worth it. Keep it up, looking forward to seeing the new you in great looking garments!

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  2. Wow! Great blog post. Besides looking really healthy, you look so happy from within -- all from committing to a healthier lifestyle. Very inspirational. Thanks for sharing.

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