My Struggle With Weight
Like so many american women, I gained too much weight with my pregnancies and then struggled with weight loss ever since.
My weight problem began when I was a kid. I could get all psychological about it, but I won’t. I remember the first time I thought I was fat. I was 12 yrs old. I had just gotten a new outfit for Christmas, and the pants were too tight for me. I wore them anyway, but I’m sure they didn’t look good. Oh well. I was 12.
Then, in 7th grade gym class we all were weighed and measured. I was 5 ft tall and 127 pounds. That’s when I knew I was over weight. Most all the other girls were less than 100 pounds. I remember feeling gross and like I needed to loose weight.
By the time I graduated high school I was 5’2 and I weighed 135 lbs. I was average and I was okay with that. Over the course of time, my weight went up and down, until I had babies at least. Then it just went up. With diabetes in my family line, I knew I had to do something. At 38 years old and watching my dads struggles, I decided it was time.
At church one Sunday, a few of us ladies were talking and one brought up this new “diet”. Basically, you eat these certain foods for 3 days. Then the rest of the week you can eat what you want. It was a 1000 calorie diet.
Most of the foods on the menu were not what I would call tasty. So I did a little research and even though the “diet” said there was a science behind the certain foods on the menu, I called BS and made my own 1000 calorie diet.
My husband is Type 1 diabetic. Meaning his pancreas doesn’t produce insulin. His doctor gave him a Calorie King pocket booklet that is a great little tool.
It’s loaded with information about height and weight, blood sugars, and heart health. The best part about this book is the large list of foods and restaurant menus with their calories, fat and carbs.
I used that booklet to create my own 1000 calorie menu. I think I stuck to it for a week or two. As I continued to read about calories, I learned that our bodies need about 1200 calories a day to function.
With that information, I added 200 calories to my menu. I started keeping track in a note book of everything I ate. I had started to cook. I mean really cook. Not from a box, but from scratch. So as I would put together a recipe, I would figure out the calories as I went. That made it simple to keep track. My calories would go up and down, but most days I would consume anywhere between 1000-1400 calories.
Within 6 months, I had lost 20 pounds. It was awesome! I felt great! Jeffrey had always told me I wouldn’t lose weight without exercising. Haha! I guess I showed him. :0 lol
The Long Hall
Anyway, for the better part of 4 years, I kept that 20 pounds off with no real problem. As long as I counted calories, I was good. It was about being accountable for me. I didn’t want to be accountable to a person, so this method worked for me.
Somewhere in that 4 years, I began working out. Not a lot, 2-4 days a week. I started off with Leslie Sansone, Walk Away the Pounds. I liked it. I was simple walking in my own space. I then moved on to Jillian Michaels, 30 day Shred. I liked that too. She’s a killer.
None of this working out took more weight off, it just helped me build some muscle and maintain. After a while, I began to run. Not far, a mile or so. I would work myself up to 2 miles, then I’d quit. I really don’t like to run.
However, I really like the way it makes me feel when I’m done. So, I’d start up again, get up to 2 miles and quit again. lol Then, I’d start all over again. Trying to convince myself that I like it.
Grief Lead To Weight Gain
Then my dad died… While I was with my parents for that month, in the winter, in south east Idaho, I’d run the dog. A Siberian Husky. Nanqu. (Nanuk) He’s a great running buddy, but he only goes, FAST!!
When I came home from that month, after daddy was gone, I’d run. Just to burn off the pain. I put my headphones in and listen to Avenge Sevenfold. Hard core heavy metal for sure. It made me numb. The running in the cold and the hard music made me feel nothing. I liked that. I was hurting, I was sad, I was broken. I wanted to be numb.
The running didn’t last long either, because I was also grieving. I’d go through periods of wanting to do nothing at all. I still functioned, but only because I had too. When I would try to get back to working out and I didn’t “feel” like going outside, I would look for workouts on YouTube.
Change It UP
I came across 2 kickboxing work outs that I liked. One is a 15 minute, which you can see here. The other is a bit longer, 25 minutes. Unfortunately, the link isn’t working right now, so I don’t want to add it. You can look around for the ones you like the best as well.
Anyway, back to the weight. This last year, since daddy passed, I stopped counting calories for the most part and I started to slowly put on weight. I came home at 135, I am now 143.
Not a lot for sure, but my concern is diabetes. My last fasting blood sugar was 88. It should be more like 70. Now, 88 isn’t bad. Before that it was 98, so I’ve done pretty good so far. However, 100 is considered pre diabetic. I don’t want that. Not after watching my daddy deteriorate the way he did.
My Fitness Pal – A New Start
So today’s the day. Today I started counting calories again. I use My Fitness Pal. I use the website and the iPhone App. I really like My Fitness Pal, because I can keep track of my calorie intake, my calorie burn when I choose to workout. I can track how much water I consume and I can even track my total nutrition for the day, week or month. I really like that. Here’s a few screen shots of today’s Food Diary:
As you can see, I went over my 1200 calories. Although, for my height, weight and activity level, I truly need 1350 ish calories.
If you want to find out how many calories you should consume to loose weight, you can use this calculator from CalorieCount.com. I like to shoot for 1200 each day knowing if I go over a few it’s not a real big deal.
The other great thing about My Fitness Pal is when I make a new recipe, I can create and store recipes on the site/app to use when I make them again. I just go to Food, then Recipes and add the one I need to my daily food intake.
Also, for you social types, My Fitness Pal is a community of people that you can connect with, encourage and receive encouragement from. I have 2 friends on mine and I like it that way.
Know Your Limits
One thing I have learned about myself and weight loss is if I restrict myself too much, I will give up. So there isn’t any food that is off limits completely. I am of course trying to be careful about making sure we have organic and non GMO food in the house.
Of the 17 items in my food diary, it’s possible that 6 of them are either not organic or that they are possibly GMO foods. I am also, trying to continue restricting my sugar, but using stevia and/or coconut sugar instead.
The mayo listed isn’t what I actually used. I only used 1/2 of a tablespoon so approx. 45 calories. I haven’t put what I am currently using for mayo in the site yet, but here it is:
You can’t see it in this photo, but this product is certified non GMO. It is also, soy and diary free as well. I’m no longer eating Chobani Yogurt either. I use Trader Joe’s Greek organic yogurt. I feel good about this switch, because most everything with the Trader Joe’s label is non GMO. According to their website anyway. At this time, I choose to believe them even if their products do not carry the Certified non GMO label.
Getting Exercise Anyway
Now that I have decided to get back on the wagon and count calories again, I want you to know that I believe exercise is a very powerful component to weigh loss and over all good health.
Cardio keeps our heart and lungs healthy and keeps fat off our middle. The spare tire has been linked to Type 2 diabetes and diabetes damages our brain, heart, kidneys, eyes, gums and pretty much every other organ we have.
Building strong muscles keeps our core tight, which keeps us from injuring our backs doing even the simplest of tasks. Strong muscles keeps our bones strong as well. With the muscle to protect our bones and our joints we have an over all strong body. You don’t have to be a hard core weight lifter to be strong and healthy. With that said, I think I will hit the virtual kickboxing gym as well.
If it’t time for you to get back on the weight loss wagon, but need a little help?
Check out My Fitness Pal and the Calorie Counter I linked above. If there is anything I can do to encourage you, please let me know in the comment link at the top.
God’s word says He gives each one of us a gift to use for His glory. If you haven’t figured it out by now, mine is encouragement.
What is your best weight loss strategy? Was it easy to maintain or were you a yoyo dieter?
Update: This post is a year old. Grief has been hard on me and my weight. I’ve gained a couple more pounds. I’m now 145. Not much more, but I’ve got 10 to loose now. I am doing something about it. I walk a couple days a week 2.6 miles. I am using My Fitness Pal and keeping track again. If I would have stuck with it a year ago, I’d probably be where I wanted by now, but grief is like that. It hurts and it can stop you in your tracks. I’ve been doing well since the beginning of December 2015. Lord willing by summer I can be where I need to be to stay healthy.