So here’s the thing, I like exercising. I get on my stationary bike every other day and I ride until I am dripping with sweat. I lift weights! I lift weights until my arms tell me not to lift weight anymore. Do I think exercising is good for you? Oh yes! Definitely! Do I think exercise can help you lose weight? No. No I don’t.
Exercising makes me feel amazing! I get the rush of it, the satisfaction of it, the accomplishment of it. It makes me feel detoxified and strong, has it ever helped me lose weight? Has it burned my fat? No! Exercising is great in the way that it helps with circulation, muscle maintenance and growth, and sweating out excess water, but it doesn’t burn the fat.
If you are thinking about losing weight but are afraid of exercise, don’t over do it. Focus on the diet and changing the way you eat first, make healthy decisions and once you are confident you have the food under control then attempt the exercise. This way you won’t become overwhelmed with changing everything about how you eat AND feeling uncomfortable with movement and muscle fatigue.
I would like to say that I am thankful for everyone who reads this blog, is supportive of learning about nutrition, my weight loss so far, mu future weight loss, all of the people who have supported me, and more!
This Thanksgiving was wonderful. I spent time with my family, I spent time with some friends, and I cheated the hell out of my diet! Luckily my brothers birthday falls on the day after Thanksgiving so I got all my cheating over with in two days but wow! Is the feeling of awfulness lasting for longer. My body is definitely sending me a sign that I feel really great on the diet and I feel really NOT great when I am off the diet.
I indulged in potatoes, stuffing, squash, birthday cake, cocktails with sugar in them, all that fun stuff. I am very excited to get back on the lifestyle to say the least, I feel bloated and gross. Not only do I feel gross but I did obviously gain some weight during this holiday splurge which I was not surprised about. I am now worried that I won’t reach my goal for this year due to this, so now I am turning up the keto to high intensity! I am fasting, eating zero carb, and drinking my weight in water to get the motion going.
Bear with me! And wish me luck!
Beyoncé Cochella Diet
I have spoken about the pros and cons of a vegan diet before, most of my friends who turn vegan make the mistake of substituting all the protein they need with high carb alternatives such as bread, bagels, wheat made whatever, etc. Looking at Beyoncé’s diet I feel like this is what I would have to go on to lose weight and maintain a vegan status. Here is the basis of her diet,
Beyoncé: I’m limiting myself to,
I don’t have Netflix so I did not watch her documentary but I did watch a lot of Youtubers trying it out and I discovered two things, #1 I find it extremely difficult to watch Youtubers and #2 there was a lot of substituting protein with carbs and sugar.
What I noticed was that people trying it would eat a ton of smoothie bowls and if you are a keto lifestyler like me you know that there is a ton of sugar in fruit that has been blended up together.
I was also surprised at the lack of imagination and creativity that went into meal preparation, so many people just gave up and bought ready made meals from vegan stores. I have always detested the idea of becoming vegan myself but I have friends who are vegan that I help with recipes all of the time! Just the other day my vegan friend discovered mushroom caps and I came up with four different recipes on the spot!
If I had to do this diet this is what it would look like,
Lettuce leaf (as the wrap)
Grilled red pepper, onion, cherry tomatoes, oregano and a touch of olive oil.
Boil up a head of broccoli,
Blend the broccoli with some of the water you boiled it in,
Add some non sweetened almond milk,
Bing Bang Boom Broccoli soup.
Steamed spinach with garlic
Grilled green pepper and onion
There you go! As well to this diet there was an excessive amount of training and cardio. I don’t know if this diet would really work better than other vegan diets without the exercise.
Try it, be careful, have fun!
Plus Size Clothing
The biggest size that I have ever been is a 22 (24 on a bad day). Just when I thought I had gotten myself down to a size 16 my mom buys me a pair of shorts (out of the kindness of her heart) and they are a size 18. At first I feel bad because I think that I am going to put them on and they are going to be too big. I put on the shorts and they fit just right. Unfortunately for my poor mother this put me in a horrible mood. I even measured myself to see what size I am according to the internet, and to my surprise the internet says I am a size 14.
What. The. Hell.
Needless to say, store sizes frustrate the hell out of me. One minute I’m a size 14 and the next I’m shot right up to a size 18 in the matter of walking from one rack to the next. I find I still go to plus size clothing stores because I feel like even though I should technically fit into anything at the regular store, I just don’t. Plus size clothes confuse me as well however, I bought the first pair of short shorts that I have ever owned. I have worn them several times (mostly around the house and the pool) but the material has already worn out. The elastic that I am assuming is woven into the material has broken in the front, making a puckering effect that is not flattering whatsoever.
I am always frustrated at the lack of quality of plus size clothing, especially for the price that they are sold at. The cut is always in a “this is what a ‘woman’ shape is” sort of cut. So what do I recommend? Make your own clothes. I know! This sounds stupid! But it isn’t, really. I made a dress a while ago that is a size 16, my mother was the only one who could wear it, until now. Not only does it fit, not only is there wiggle room, but I think that I am almost a size smaller than it! All of this is amazing, but to the big brands I am still a size 18… or 16…. or maybe 14 on a good day.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
I love this movie. I have never watched a movie about a day dreamer that has been done so well! ‘The Secret Life of Walter Mitty’ is about a man who has never done anything significant in his life but constantly day dreams about doing the most extraordinary adventures. Suddenly his lively hood is threatened as his job is deemed unnecessary so he sets out to find the one piece that might save it. He learns how to be adventurous, courageous, and live in the moment. Of course in the end he also gets his love interest and a whole bunch of other things that he always wanted.
ANYWAY I thought I might write about it today in an attempt to connect it to the weight loss journey. A great way to understand what it is like to be an entirely different person with an entirely different life is to physically remove yourself an put yourself where you want to be with the people you want to know. Start going to places and behaving with people in the way you want to. Want to be apart of a tennis club? Go join a tennis club or at least write down the way you think they would act, what they would talk about, what they would eat.
I have always dreamed about living in an apartment in New York City. The walls would be brick and painted yellow and the grouting would be filled in with black paint. I would have a big beautiful oil painting that is filled with rich deep colours hanging on the wall. The others walls would have shelves where I put all the things I have collected from my travels over the years. I would have pictures framed! My refrigerator would be filled with healthy food that I bought from the local market! Every room would be neat and tidy but welcoming in the sense that someone lived there. I would have a fragrance from candles in my beautiful apartment and every month I would switch it up! I would have cute clothes that I would feel proud to wear and take Instagram photos of all the time!
This is a pretty big dream that will take a TON of work to achieve, but I don’t need to actually live in New York City to live this way. I can clean my room and make it look tidy, welcoming, and smell good right now! I can go to the local market (that is probably more local than anything in New York anyway) and buy healthy produce and meats. I can make a dream board that will help remind and motivate me with all my goals and aspirations in life!
I can eat like I am the healthy person that I have always wanted to be, I can behave like the happy person I am and will become, I can be the person I want to be even if outwardly it isn’t reflected right now. Right now you have a secret life just like Walter Mitty, day dreaming and hoping something amazing and noteworthy might happen, the truth is you can make this happen right now or take the steps to getting it going right now! Take the leap!
Breaking the Allusion
How long have I been photoshopping my face onto a supermodels head in my mind? Probably years. That’s the goal right? To have perfect sun kissed asking, smooth body parts that have never experienced any form of stress, hardly an ounce of fat to be seen. I recently realized that this is never going to happen. Shockingly enough, it has taken me this long to come to terms with this fact!
Am I surprised? Not really. Am I devastated? A little bit. Losing weight and overcoming the sugar addiction, and accepting that I won’t be able to ever eat my feelings again is a ton of work and to come to the conclusion that all of this hard work won’t result in a body that a magazine would publish is sad. Unfortunately, even with this conclusion, I can’t turn around and just give up.
This realization can be shattering for some people as they have been fantasizing themselves into a supermodel for years. The important thing to remember is that if you reach your goal, even if it isn’t the goal you originally dreamed up, it will be better then the state you were in before. I remember when I weighed 270 pounds, was I happy? No. Was I proud of the way I looked? Absolutely not. Did people treat me well, with respect, admiration, kindness? Close to never.
I am not at my goal yet, I am not even at a healthy weight yet, and how has my life changed? I feel comfortable buying clothes. I am happier than I have ever been before. I am treated with respect, and if I’m not I love myself enough to give those crappy people the boot. Understanding that I will never have the ‘perfect body’ took a bit of grieving. Did I cry? Maybe I would have a few years ago, but no I didn’t. I have proven to myself that I can be happy without the photoshopped body. Maybe I won’t wear a bikini but I will wear a bathing suit at the beach, and that is a huge accomplishment.
So Close Yet So Far!
Meeting goals and staying happy and satisfied with your progress don’t always come hand in hand. My overall goal for this year was to lose 50 pounds by October 22, and I am nervous. It is already October 9th and while I have made great strives in my weight loss journey I am still 13 pounds away from my goal. This only gives me exactly 13 days to lose 13 pounds, and there is the hurtle of Thanksgiving, then going to Toronto for a few days on business. Never mind, I am not nervous, I am terrified.
It pains me to type this, and by no means am I giving up, but I think I may have to accept the fact that I will not achieve my goal. I will not let myself fall into despair by any means because coming this far is such a huge success that there is no way to ignore my weight loss. I will not lose sight of the real goal; to become healthy. I will not allow myself to throw in the towel and let the intrusive thoughts of ‘I will never be thin’ enter my mind.
Staying positive, and on the right track, even though there is a huge possibility that things won’t work out exactly as you want them to is a way of being that must be acknowledged and addressed. When you are making any kind of change in your life, saving money, changing careers, having a child, moving to a new house, there will be so many things that go wrong and right that you did not expect. Maybe you won’t be able to put on a brave face through it all, but staying true to the final destination is important on the road to success.
I am not going to get discouraged or sad or angry at myself. Instead I am going to continue what I am doing. I am going to do what I know works and implementing all that I have learned from writing a blog post about health everyday for 351 days! I am going to instil fast days again, I am going to cut back the carbs again (yes, maybe my short comings have been because of my love of grapes), and I am going to ride the waves of cravings until I get to my goal.
As for Thanksgiving, I am a little trepidatious that I will over indulge on some things, and I probably will, but this is nothing a huge bucket of water and a fast day immediately after can’t fix. I will enjoy myself and keep my goal in mind so I don’t lose focus.
Not caring about food
We’ve all thought about it, ‘how do skinny people not care about food?’ I would be lying to you if I said that I no longer care greatly about food. I still fantasize about pumpkin pie and turkey when holidays are nearing, my mouth still waters at the thought of going out to the movies, I still have to force myself to remember how much I like salad when going out to dinner.
Learning how to not care about food is probably something that is unattainable for me because my whole being revolves around food. I revolved around it when I was addicted to sugar, and I revolve around it now that I have to concentrate on not eating sugar. People who don’t care about food grew up in an environment that did not prioritize it. I remember comparing myself to my friend when I was much younger, my family ate together during dinner, watching T.V., birthdays, any holiday, what have you, all we thought about was the meal to come. My friends family on the other hand revolved around sports. They would plan hikes, bike rides, swimming competitions, whatever physical activity they could get their muscular hands on they would do it.
Do I wish my family was more interested in sports? No… not really. Meal time was more of a bonding experience then sports was for her family. I remember the strenuous relationship she always had with her parents and her brothers because, well, three of them were boys so they were automatically better at sports than her and her mother was a champion biker, swimmer, and runner. There was a lot of competition in the family and a lot of the time the one not winning was her. My family was just bonded because everyone was interested in cooking, learning new recipes, trying new things, enjoying or hating it together. There was no competition, until it came down to who was doing the dishes.
Instead of learning how to not care about food, worrying when you will be able to ‘take it or leave it’ it is better to learn how to respect food and your body. Everyone dreams that one day they will be able to look at a carrot and have the same reaction as looking at cake, but that will never happen. Learn how to say to yourself ‘if I don’t have this now, it is not the end of the world.’ and be able to sit with yourself in satisfaction that you did not indulge in overeating of cheating on your diet.
Respecting food means to be able to look at it, leave it, and come to terms with the fact that it’s not that you will never be able to have it but you just don’t want it right now because it does not coincide with your goals. Be able to care about food in that it is to fuel your body, meet your goals, and achieve a healthy way of being.
The benefits of saunas!
I love having a good melt in the sauna, it warms you up when you have a chill, it sweats out the toxins in your skin, and of course it helps you lose that little bit of weight.
Sauna’s can actually help you quit smoking as when you sweat for long periods of time the excess nicotine in your body will be expelled to help curb the cravings. I find that when I have stalled in my weight loss having a sauna can help break the barrier to losing the next few pounds. Interestingly enough though the only way to continue the cycle is to drink lots of water. I will drink nearly three litres of water during the day, sweat it out in the sauna at night, and voila! Another point lost.
Of course it is important for your body to stay hydrated as toxins and fat need to be flushed out of the body, and if you are planning to try having a sauna please keep in mind that proper hydration is key for your body to be able to handle it. If I use the sauna to break my weight loss stall I will do it for up to 5 consecutive days, any more than this and I find that not only does it stop working but I wan’t to rely on it. Usually I will be able to continue with the weight loss or I will have to fast for a day to kick start my body.
It’s also important to not get too excited over the weight loss of a sauna as you can lose a pound a day. This fast paced weight loss is not maintainable for the long term. The best amount of weight that you should aim to lose is 1-2 pounds per week, this will ensure that your weight loss is achievable and less likely to be regained.
If the thought of a sauna is enticing, try an epsom salt bath before hand to relax and open up the poor of your skin. Try a face mask and hair mask during your bath, this way when you have a sauna any left over particles from the face mask will be sweated out, lessening the risk of acne.
The Food Journal
I have mentioned keeping a food diary several times throughout the duration of this blog, this is because it is the most helpful tool in my weight loss journey. I think that normally the food diary is to simply record your weight, what you eat, how much you eat of it, and what it all means in the world of calories. I however have come accustomed to not only recording all of these aspects but also my mood and emotions and how it effected my eating choices. Doing this took a lot of work as going from eating whatever you want and suddenly becoming fully aware of every aspect of your food is never easy to do, but I am happy to say that it is a habit that I take time to do every day.
The first thing that I always record is the date, this allows me to have an idea of time when I flip back in my journal. Then I record my weight for the day. After this I write a sentence about how I feel. Sometimes, if I have enough time in the morning, I will write down a little self affirmation to make myself feel better if things didn’t go as planned.
If you are just starting off and are trying to understand the real concept of food, this is where I suggest you get more diligent and specific with your recordings. Now that I have been doing this diet for quit some time I know exactly how many calories, carbs, and grams of protein are in the foods that I eat. If you are just starting out however, I recommend writing down what you eat, how much you have eaten, and the carbs and calories that go along with this. As time progresses you will begin to develop an understanding of what works and how much of it you can handle. If you are suffering from tinnitus I would recommend recording the salt content in your food as well, you never fully understand everything that is put into processed foods until you’re forced to write it down.
At the end of the day I like to sit down and really write out how the day went, the ups and downs, the fast parts and the dull parts, how it all overall effected my choices. Then I give a brief description of how it all made me feel in the end and if I feel confident that tomorrow will bring me good results.
Keeping a food/mood diary will help you understand how food can effect your emotions and the effects and consequences of these emotions, whether good or bad. Give it a try!
On the quest to lose 50 pounds in a year. Can she do it? Only time will tell....with the help of this blog.