Sunday, July 10, 2016

Trying Once Again

For as long as I can remember, I've been overweight, and for most of my life I've been fat. As a child my mom shopped in the "Chubbette" section for me, and I went straight to the women's sizes when I hit teenhood.  Back in my day there were no cool, fashionable clothes for the size 16 or 18 teen.  When I was in 7th grade, my pediatrician prescribed a 600 calorie a day diet for me that my mom and I followed strictly.  I was so excited when I bought a size 12 dress that year.  Unfortunately 2 things happened.  I couldn't sustain 600 calories a day for more than about 6 months (!) so the weight came back on.  But more permanently my metabolism went from slow to snail's pace.  I'm still dealing with the consequences.  At any rate, when I got married at age 23, I wore a size 22 wedding dress.  I briefly lost some weight, getting down to 140 lbs, with Weight Watchers, at the end of the '70's.  But then I got pregnant and my weight ballooned again.  After 2 pregnancies and a miscarriage, I weighed close to 300 lbs.  I eventually leveled off, fluctuating between 250-257 lbs. Then I started dealing with rheumatoid arthritis which left me reeling until it was diagnosed and the meds started working.  I abandoned my 3x/week water aerobics class and my 2x/week strength training because I just couldn't summon the energy to move and I couldn' t grasp things.  It was all I could do to work.   I gave up and of course the weight started creeping up again.

On June 1st I went to the dr where the blood work showed my A1C had also crept up to 6.8.  I came home and ordered a Garmin Vivosmart HR device which is waterproof so I can wear it in the pool.  I also signed up for a calorie counting app - myfitnesspal-- which synchs with the Vivosmart.  So since June 1st I've entered every bit of food that's gone into my mouth and I started keeping track of my steps.  I've been able to limit my calories to about 1600 on a daily basis, and I've been attempting to meet my daily step goals.  I haven't felt too limited (yet) with the calorie restrictions, enjoying gelato and ice cream occasionally.  My biggest diet changes have been to snack on cucumbers, strawberries, or Campari tomatoes instead of crackers, or cookies, or Werther's hard candies.  I've cut out most bread, limited rice, and had pasta only occasionally.  I've also started using unsweetened almond milk (which drives my former dairyman husband crazy) instead of milk on cereal and in breakfast smoothies.  I do allow myself a tablespoon (measured!!) of 1/2 and 1/2 in my unsweetened iced coffee.

The upshot of all this is that I've lost 14 lbs and I got to move the 50 lb weight on the balance scale at the Wellness Center to the left for for the first time in 30 years. I also set small goals --- "I'm going to lose 10 lbs"  instead of "I'm going to lose 140 lbs."  Having done various weight loss programs over the years, I also know that the first 10 lbs are relatively easy.  It gets hard now.  But this is the first time I've combined exercise with heathier eating.   I'm nervous now, because the pool which I go to work out in at least 4 times a week is closed for the next 4 weeks. I'll have to do my sweating in the air instead of the water.  And I know that I'm in a "honeymoon" stage with everything right now.  I hope I can make the honeymoon last for a very long time!

So, I'm trying once again. Maybe it will be the last time I have to.

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