in which Kitteh shrinks away oodles of fluff

Archive for the ‘Historical Fluff’ Category

Looking back, looking ahead

 

Howdy, kitteh friends. I’m back to talk to myself, because I need a place to plan and think. To do that, Imma sum up what has happened since, say, 2000.

Here’s my long, long story as short as I can make it: I have known I SHOULD be low carb since 2000 and the days of Protein Power. However, back then, it was all about high protein and after a couple years, I developed a bad egg allergy from eating them too often (as in, bleeding-colon-bad) and a problem with what I now know was glucogenesis, and I pretty much stalled.

Between the egg allergy and the stall, I wandered a bit from 2002-2004 and then in 2004, started seeing a nutritionist, who put me on low carb, low cal, and exercise and I lost about 40 lbs and gained lots of muscles.

In 2004, I was very close to goal when I found out I was pregnant with our first, who was born in 2005. After she was born, I had a year of restricted activity and high bp meds because of post-partum preeclampsia, fun times, and so what I was doing before did not work at all.

I hovered around the same weight for a couple years (always obsessed with it but not making any headway) and had three bouts of pneumonia in 2007. Just as I started feeling better from that, I found out about our second (also surprise) baby in March 2008.

Then in June, at 15 weeks, I had a severe placental abruption and was put on total bedrest until 38 weeks, when I had our son by c-section. He was a big baby, weighed 16 lbs at his six week appointment. I, by  contrast, was like a coma patient – had lost over a hundred pounds of lean mass, and my hypermobile joints had turned into Hypermobility Syndrome. Before I got THAT diagnosed and treated, exercise was just a disaster. And I STILL didn’t know about glucogenesis, so my LC efforts never really worked consistently.

Between then and 2014, I started this blog. I got a CPAP machine to address sleep problems, and that doctor directed me to Medifast, On Medifast (“packets”), I lost about 50 lbs and then developed an allergy to the soy and whey in the packets. Medifast is ketogenic, but I was still not sure it was OK to be in ketosis that long and wondered if I would “destroy my metabolism.” (This is pretty hilarious, since I am pretty sure I don’t have much of one to destroy with losing all that muscle!)

Since Medifast, I have tried various forms of intermittent fasting, low carb, Paleo, Primal, and was even vegan for about six months.  But I never really found the right combination to do well consistently. I have always struggled with food allergies and sensitivies, which change about every three years and so are a moving target for avoiding inflammation. This year, I started leaving off gluten/gliaden (not just from high carb things), whey and casein (from dairy and protein powders), and avoided eggs, and that started to heal the inflammation somewhat but weight loss was sporadic.

In 2015 (March) I got on Weight Not, which is a commercial program that uses really restricted real food lists and supplements but boils down to a ketogenic diet with restricted calories. I lost about 50 lbs between mid-March and July this year, and started studying ketosis and IF in earnest (because I am not enthused about paying what amounts to $11/day for the supplements). Discovered the issue with high protein (glucogenesis) and that whey causes high insulin levels even when the blood glucose doesn’t rise.

So now I understand that my real issue is too much insulin, and that the best way to heal that is a combination of ketosis/HFLC when I need to eat, and fasting (to reduce basal insulin over time and heal the system, as well as to let my body burn off this stored energy!)

And ironically? after all the research and reading, agonizing and pondering, the best explanation of ALL of this has been “Butter Bob” Briggs, who uses his “fifty cent vocabulary” to explain some thousand dollar words in YouTube videos like “Butter Makes Your Pants Fall Off”! Ha!

So I am starting my own “thing” on Monday (meaning Sunday night, by making sure I don’t have anything after dinner). Plan will be set out in next post.

This time….

At work, getting ready for Cataclysmic Work Event at end of month, and waiting on someone else, so taking a moment to share with you how freaking pleased I am with what’s happening right now.

Back in 2004-05, I got in great shape. I lost weight I had been adding steadily since college and got very fit. I did it by low carb eating and by a faithful execution of an exercise program. It was very simple: I challenged myself to prove people wrong that “just” a mile a day, three or four days a week, would make any difference. I wrote myself out a contract (literally) outlining that I would work out on M, T, either W or Th, and Fri. I could only skip if I billed (not worked) more than 14 hours in a day. (In reality, when that happened, I needed the work out to wind down!) If I did skip, it had to be made up on Sat or Sun. The catch (or so I thought) was that i was just going to do the one mile walk from Leslie Sansonne’s Walk Away the Pounds. I could do MORE, but that was the minimum. Takes about 20 minutes or so, with warm up and cool down. I would come home from work, do my workout, then shower and put on lounging clothes. (These were the blissful–in that respect–pre-bebbeh days).

Result was, I dropped from a tight size 24 to a loose size 14/some 12s and was well on my way to getting to goal weight. Pretty much attribute that to eating WELL (carbs under 10 per meal or snack, lots of protein, water and fiber) and the workout program. Went to Disney with big family group, could handle anything it threw at me. Very happy with self.

Then, Bebbeh Kitteh No. 1. And so on.

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As we know, I also had success with weight loss last year, January-July 2012, where I lost lots of pounds and went from size 26/28 to 20 and lost about 65 lbs or so. I did it THAT time by Medifast. No exercise to speak of. Srsly. And I kept thinking, how well would this be going if I could also bestir my chubbeh yet adorable frame to exercise? Perhaps with my old friend, Leslie Sansonne? But I never did it.

So THIS time, THIS TIME kitteh friends, I am doing… BOTH! I am on the Medifast plan very rigourously (and have passed the cravings stage). And in my new schedule, I am up early enough to do one mile of the slim down (which has 5 variants) every day BEFORE showering. And the UP band gets me going to add more steps after that–my current UP goal is listed at 6,000 steps/day but secretly it is 10K 🙂 and I will be adding 1K to the official goal each week until the unoffical and official match. 🙂 And I am hitting 10K+ with some regularity!! 🙂

Now, to see what that does to my weight loss!

For example, woke up this morning 2 lbs lighter…!

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My Weirdest 2013 Goal

Here’s my strangest WL goal. I am going to get back into my poodle skirt.

That’s right. Poodle skirt.

I made this skirt when I was a junior in high school, to wear to a “sock hop” themed dance at Governor’s school that summer.

 

hanging up so you can see the poodle

hanging up so you can see the poodle

I wore it with a pink twinset, wide black patent leather belt, bobby socks, and Mary Janes. I wore my hair up and curly. And my date and I won the Twist contest.

See that itty bitty waist at the top? It was loose.

See that itty bitty waist at the top? It was loose.

I found this skirt in storage at my mom’s over the holiday, and I had a sudden, passionate desire to put in on again (and twist, of course). So here’s my most random goal ever. I want to be able to wear that skirt again.

I would have been wearing a size 10 jean at the time, I think? But a size 6 petite dress – just have always had Le Junque in Le Trunque, even back then. But this circle skirt completely hides that.

Not that I want to wear it in PUBLIC. (Relax.) I just want to be able to put it on my body again.

2012 Retrospective

One year (minus one day) ago, I wrote this post about making trust and discipline my words for 2012.

I have spent a lot of time thinking about this past year–what worked, what didn’t, and what I want to do THIS year to make it at least as good. And one thing that is great (and frankly startling) is that… it WAS good! My body DOES still work–not as fast as some (OK, not as fast as MOST!) and not as well, and not on carbs at all, but it DOES work.

Last year I lost 52.4 lbs. I am slightly up from that after the Holiday Rampage (of which more later) but if I can do that again this year, I will be right at my weight when I had Kiddo No. 1. Basically it will have taken a year to erase the “effect” (poundage wise) of Baby No. 2, and (continuing to go back in time), I would have the effect of Baby No. 1 gone in another year.

Striking things about that for me:

  1. it feels really possible.
  2. it feels really OK — even though this time LAST year I was all impatient to  Lose.All.The.Pounds. by the end of 2012, I am now really OK with the fact that it is a process.
  3. it feels really healthy.
  4. it feels really maintainable.

I also note that I lost the majority of the weight in the first half of 2012–six months. And instead of being angreh that I didn’t just push on through and lose 100, I am actually pleased. The six months of maintenance, more or less, let me PROVE I can maintain, let me get used to this size again, and (most importantly, but TMI) let my hormones settle down a bit.

In fact, instead of being angreh, that’s probably at least PART of why this feels so doable. I can lose another 50 in a year–maybe more–I did it in 6 months last year!

So today (first day back at work) I am back on plan and very, very happy about it. Back to strict observance –for the rest of this month, no alcohol, strict lean and green, etc. Hoping to be back to lowest weight of 2012 by end of January–which should be doable but my body can be stubborn, so we’ll see. No alcohol until I am back to the lowest seems reasonable. 🙂

Best wishes to all for a Happy New Year. I’m going to be back on regularly for a while (at least!) getting ramped back up! No QUESTION but that I do better when I am posting regularly!

275.0, Day 3

So three days in a row I have been at 275.0. That got me thinking – it has only been a few time that I have held “steady” at a weight for more than a day – usually it bounces at least a little, up or down, before going down and staying.  So I looked back at my weight history in TargetWeight and here’s what I observed:

  • The first time this happened was when i weighed in at 295.0 for 4 days in a row (and the day before at 295.2) back in mid-March.
  • The second time this happened was when I weighed in at 284.4 for 3 days (and the day before was at 284.0) back in early May.

Those are the only times this year that I have “held” a weight for more than two days in a row.

Here are the conclusions I draw:

  • Maybe my body “hangs out” every 10 lbs or so for a few days and gets used to the new decade?
  • Even the longest time (back in March) was only for four days, so tomorrow or the next, I should be slipping down some more.
  • In March, I pushed through and started going down again. In May, I got frustrated (after only THREE days, ironically) and had “too much” of good stuff for dinner. Want to guess which time I wound up finally going DOWN after? Yeah. Right.

 

So I am going to push through this with laser like focus. I’m really eager to get to my next magic number – 271 – the highest I can remember being before second kid.

Then the next magic number is super special: 250! I’ll be down 75 lbs – 75 of 200 so 38% or so done. 🙂

Mixed feelings (as usual)….

The good  news is, the water whooshed away yesterday and I am down to 292.4 – so less than half a pound from my 292 goal – which will be THIRTY pounds down.

So this is what I was thinking this morning in the shower: at this rate (and it is a GOOD rate, I KNOW that!!) I can and will hit 30 lbs down before March, which will have me averaging 10 lbs a month for the first three months. Can I get a WHOO HOO?

And that made me think – wow. Thirty pounds down. That’s over halfway to 50. And there’s a “thing” about fifty pounds. That will be the most I have ever lost – in one run anyway. I have lost 40-45 lbs many times (and gained it all back and then some, obviously) but I have never crossed that fifty pound mark. So it is really exciting to think that at this rate, I will be crossing that fifty pound line by June!!!

And THAT led me to think, there’s another thing about fifty pounds. Fifty pounds off is 272, and that is one of my personal “magic numbers.”  You see, when I got pregnant with Thing 2, I was out of shape and miserable, the biggest I had ever been, after a year of pneumonia and other health problems. In fact, the weekend I found out about the pregnancy, which was also the weekend of my daughter’s third birthday party, I had just joined a gym and hired a trainer to get back in shape. I just knew I could be back down to where I was when Thing 1 was born (three years before and about fifty pounds) in nothing flat. That day, I weighed right at 272 lbs.

And even though I have gained another FIFTY POUNDS since then, 275-ish the number I have been at “in my head” ever since. Even when I hit 300, it seemed temporary, not “real” weight that I would have to shave off, bit by slow-going bit. And I really never registered that I was actually almost TWENTY-FIVE pounds above 300 when I started in January.

So on the one hand, part of me is gleeful that I am closing in on 50 lbs down. More than halfway there, even. But then there is this other, tiny, incredulous part of my brain that is like, REALLY? I am going to have lost FIFTY POUNDS just to get back to where I THOUGHT I WAS?!  How delusional WAS I?

But I am going to choose to just quietly acknowledge that thought  (“Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus… and you REALLY WERE ENORMOUS”) and move back to the happy side of the street. Because when I get to fifty pounds lost, I will be:

  1. crossing the 50 mark for the first time
  2. almost 30% of the way to losing the 175 lbs that I am GOING to lose
  3. erasing the last four years of abuse and weight from my body and 
  4. starting on erasing the next phase of weight – the period from Baby 1 to Baby 2 – another three years to erase by losing another fifty pounds.

Now realistically, if I keep up 10 lbs/month, I could be back there by OCTOBER. How amazing would it be to be working on the “real” pre-baby weight by November?

Of elephants and chains…and white bikinis

I’ve stolen the following, word for word, from FemCentral:

Elephant keepers and trainers in India – mahouts – commonly use chains to restrain their elephants. A chain strong enough to hold a grown elephant, however, would be far too heavy for a human to lift. So, the mahout ties the baby elephant with the heaviest chain that the mahout can handle. Though the size of the chain is too big for the baby elephant, it attempts to break the thick chain for years, finally getting the notion that the chain can never be broken. Later when it becomes an adult and actually has the strength to easily break its chain, the elephant never attempts to do so. Its willpower has been destroyed. The elephant lives its life not knowing about its strength.

Occasionally, an elephant becomes aggressive and tries to run away. In that struggle it breaks the chain and sets itself free. Once the elephant is caught and again chained, however, it does not remember that it can free itself. (Source: http://www.sakthifoundation.org/breakchain.htm)

Jenn was using that well-written elephant metaphor for women – in number, the majority now in most first world countries, and yet whose issues are marginally represented in the political arena. I remember hearing that same statistic back in my senior year of college (1992 or 1993) when Naomi Wolf spoke at my university to promote her then-new book, The Beauty Myth. Incidently, Naomi argued that the real problem was how afraid most women are of the label “feminist” and urged us to take back the term – something Jenn is doing herself at the moment over at Fem Central, and beautifully so. That was a pretty profound lecture to a happily conservative, religious girl from the rural South – I’d even go so far as to say, life changing. So if you haven’t read it, proceed at once to obtain The Beauty Myth (and everything else by Naomi Wolf). Then come back here.

Because here, I want to take a moment to contemplate this metaphor in a very personal way. I can think of other examples of this same phenomena from the animal kingdom – once bullied by the family cat, puppies tend to stay that way – even when they outweigh said cat by 100 lbs or more. Similarly, a puppy who retreats under a couch to “hide” from scary things like thunder will still try the same maneuver – even when only the very tip of his muzzle will actually fit under the couch in adulthood. 

I guess the point is this:  we form impressions of ourselves and our relationship to the world in childhood and often – too often – we never even examine those beliefs in adulthood, let alone challenge them.  I’m willing to bet you that as adults, those elephants never even asked whether they wanted to be chained. It was just a fact of their life – taken for granted, background to their lives.

There is no doubt in my mind that we have these same types of beliefs – untrue but unnoticed – that shape our behavior to food and fat.  For example, the white bikini. As to why owning (and possibly even wearing) a white bikini is one of my personal goals, suffice to say it’s a long and personal story, even for an anonymous blog.  But take it as a given that when I can put on one of those white bikinis that tie in the back and at the side of the bottoms, I will have totally arrived at a destination with my body image stuff.

So a few days ago, I had a few minutes to kill. I’d been thinking about the white bikini, and thought, wouldn’t it be cool to print a picture of someone with my general body type to tack up in my room somewhere? And so I hit google images and started looking around. I found a few – quite a few, actually. And clicking to go see the photos  led me to articles that describe white bikinis as “timeless” and (dangerously) to sites that sell such items. Never one to do things free when you could spend money, I thought, what if I bought one to hang in the closet? Wouldn’t that be even more concrete? Wouldn’t that be an affirmation of all I want to do and how committed I am?

So, here is what I immediately learned: skimpy bikinis are really damn expensive. Like, many dozens of dollars per square inch of thin fabric expensive. Like, hard-to-justify-randomly-buying-one-when-you-don’t-know-what-style/size-you-will-want-when-you-reach-a-bikini-state expensive. So I decided to print the picture and move on with my life.

And since then, it keeps coming back to haunt me. Not that I didn’t spend the money – believe me, I know I will spend it and enjoy it when I am actually CHOOSING a bikini at my goal. But the more I looked – really looked – at the styles of bikini, the more I realized my brain was just FROZEN on being able to imagine wearing such a thing in the privacy of my closet – let alone out in the world. Not because of modesty reasons – although yes, that, too. But because I can’t imagine my body that “smooth” again. If “again” is the right term, since even when (objectively speaking) it was smooth and a bikini would have been cute on me, I FELT enormous.

Other than an unfortunate chubby period before major puberty kicked in (at, say, fifth and sixth grade), I was NOT a fat kid. The summer before seventh grade, every bit of pudge I had put on suddenly rearranged itself, pretty much overnight, into tits and ass.  But in the style of the day (preppy, man cut clothes) I felt like I was about to bust out of every button up everything I owned. I hated my body – ironically, a lot more then at 125 lbs, than I do now, at 300 lbs. And I have carried that chain ever since middle school – certain that because my mom was “fat” (to varying degrees) and always dieting (in various ways) I was destined to be fat.

The scariest part is not, as you might imagine, the fact that I had a kid, became a “mom” and immediately started living out that “only fat women make good moms” mental record I have for myself. No, the scariest part is that even after literally decades of working on mental state, I still can’t look at that white bikini and KNOW – BELIEVE – that I will be able to put it on.

But you know what? That’s not a real chain. It has no power other than the power I give it with my own mind. My body could have worn a bikini then, and it will be bikini-rific within the next three years. I may never wear it out of my house, but I will own one, and it will look awesome. Listen up, Little Kitteh, because that is just some puny little weak chain taht  has bought into. I am not about to give up.