Besides explaining to me what was going on with that whole “gaining weight in your sleep” thing, my new sleep doc also suggested I could try out “Take Shape for Life” as a diet method. Here’s the deal: you eat five of their meals daily (which are really only snacky sized, 100-110 calories each) and one “lean and green” meal per day. Pretty easy math to see that you get about 500-510 calories from their food, plus whatever you eat for lean and green. The best part is that the “meals” are 100% nutritionally interchangeable – doesn’t matter what you pick – and they are all your nutrients covered if you eat your five, with the exception of needing more fiber and protein (hence the green and the lean). So for me, this is a NO BRAINER meal plan. I am already planning “lean and green” meals for my family every night. I was ALSO trying to plan “lean and green” meals and snacks for me the rest of the day, and BOY was it hard – and expensive. My 5 a day for the month on TSFL are less than $300 – and I was spending close to $50/week just on lunches, if not more.
So, I joined up. It took a week for me to meet with the nutritionist/coach (free assistance when you buy the food!) and for my food to get to me. It arrived the morning after my first sleep study (more on that later). I wanted to avoid boredom AND developing a food allergy (which I am VERY prone to do if I eat the same thing over and over). So when it arrived, I opened ALL the boxes. I took gallon ziplock bags and labeled four sets of Sunday-Saturday. I filled the bags with a randomized selection of food packets. There are 70 choices on the program, for this first time through I had ordered several kinds of soups, shakes, bars, crunchies (pretzels and puffs), pudding, pancakes, and eggs. I made sure to put a pancake and an egg on each weekend day by filling those weekend bags first. (I knew that would be the tougher days, because I would be home watching other people eat other stuffs.) And I got started right away!
The first day, I dropped 4.5 lbs. I have been eating this way for three weeks as of today (21 days) and am down 15.5 lbs! 🙂 I am SO excited because this is EASY, BRAINLESS, NUTRITIONALLY SOUND, DOCTOR SUPERVISED, and should keep me rolling along for a good while. I haven’t measured for this week yet, but in the first two weeks I lost 3 inches from my hips and 2 from my waist, plus lots of other ones all over. In short, I am VERY happy with my results. I am averaging almost a pound per day.
Yes, I know. Prepackaged food is “dangerous” because you might not learn how to eat right. Thing is, I KNOW how to eat right. I did it for years and years. But with all the constraints in my life right now on time, I have a very hard time planning and executing enough SMALL meals to get me moving on the weight loss. This keeps my blood sugar rock solid (I am hypoglycemic) and I feel GREAT, other than HUNGRY in that last hour or so before the next packet. But I am LEARNING to like that feeling because it means my body is turning to its fat stores and YAY, that means less fat to tote around.
My goal with this plan is to do it for one year without stopping and then evaluate how far along I am and whether I want to keep going or what. Until then, I am committed to it. That’s just 12 months of orders, 52 weeks (now only 10 orders left and 49 weeks!) 🙂 I can do just about anything for a set period of time, and this turns out to not even be that hard or unpleasant.. 🙂 Hurray!!
I also know this is more extreme than lots of people will go. But I felt that I was really teetering on the brink of disability. After all that bedrest, my weight had surpassed my muscles and my ability to work out safely. This will help me get down and then I can get back to the working out. (I want to lose about 30-40 lbs before I start back on work outs.)
Next post: the sleep studies.