Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Metaphorically speaking, my Mean Metabolism and I are engaged in a constant struggle. For the first decade of my life, she was my friend. She was just "Miss Metabolism" then. But puberty came, and Miss Metabolism changed. It started with slow changes - turning the slim child into a "pleasantly-plump teen," no matter how active I was.
By the time I was in my 20's, Miss Metabolism was very unfriendly. Once I hit my 30's, she was downright mean. In the Metabolic Arm-Wrestling Match, of which I was an unwilling partner, she got me all the time. Why? Because, lurking in the shadows, insulin resistance had turned my former friend into a vicious monster. As it turns out, the only way to help Miss Metabolism (and myself!) is by healing her - even though she wants no part of it.
For many long years (decades, in fact), Miss Meanie Metabolism maintained complete control over me - all because I did not know what had gone wrong in our relationship. I didn't know that to help Metabolism means to get that insulin resistance under firm control - and keep it there. Once that happens, Meanie Metabolism will start to heal, but we have to understand that insulin resistance will always be waiting in the background, ready to take over Metabolism once more.
The situation reminds me of what happened to Peter Parker in Spiderman III - when an alien and evil symbiant sneakily turned the usually decent and hard-working Peter into one aggressive stinker. Once Peter figured out what was going on, he struggled with the "false high" the alien gave him - but he inevitably made the right choice, and found an unusual way to defeat the allures of the symbiant.
What the evil symbiant did to Peter Parker is what insulin resistance does to our poor Metabolisms. For insulin resistance is our inner symbiant; it makes us crave the carbs that are bad for us; it gives us an artificial high that, in the end, will change not only the way we look but what we are, inside. It will destroy us. Just like Peter, the symbiant is not only bad for us - but for those we love, and for those who love us. Kickin' carbs is the only way to control it (because, unlike Peter, we can't totally be rid of insulin resistance) .
For those with Metabolic Syndrome, kickin' carbs results in a slimmer and healthier you. (On top of that, wouldn't you just love to once more have that swing in your thing? LOL!)
So - back to my epiphany. Things are a little different now - because, like Peter, I now know of the 'unusual' weapons against insulin-resistance and I must use them! At this point in my intra-personal Metabolic Arm-Wrestling Match, it seems that the Mean Metabolism and I are of equal strength. Sometimes her arm goes down, and other times my arm goes down. But she has been at her tricks a lot longer than have I. Eventually, as I keep using all of my low-carb strategies, I will overcome insulin resistance, and that means transforming Miss Meanie Metabolism back to my former friend, Miss Magnificent Metabolism!
Today's update, by the way! Divine: 3 lbs. down, for a total of 15 lbs. in 7 days (hear the crowd roar!)/Miss Meanie Metabolism: Zilch!
Meanwhile, I've initiated a Challenge at LowCarbFriends called The 100 Day PLUS Challenge. It's as simple as it is straightforward: a set of 'mini-challenges' for anyone who is low-carbing.
The Goals: To help each one of us stay on plan (whichever low-carb plan you choose), with 'mini-challenge' after 'mini-challenge' (all within one Over-all Challenge). Individually, we set our own goals. We are not challenging each other, but supporting each other while proving to ourselves we can stay 'on plan' 24/7 - no matter what!
End Results: 1) Each person who is faithful to plan will be well on their way to healing their own Metabolisms. 2) Each one of us will see outer results of weight loss and enjoy better health with inner, hidden results (lower blood pressure, better cholesterol numbers, lower incidences or complete disappearance of GERDS, etc.). 3) We build comraderie and support each other, day after day, week after week - right through the last days of summer, early fall, Halloween sweets time, Thanksgiving carby-time, and all those Christmas goodies, everywhere we turn! (Oh, that Mean Metabolism - how she tries to trick us to use her very own weapons against ourselves!) With a strong support system, we can not only manage low-carbing but excel at it and revel in it! (And each one of us will inevitably defeat that Meanie Metabolism, whether yours is a Miss or a Mister!)
The first mini-challenge ends on September 8 (a Tuesday) - because many people have a hard time with the Labor Day weekend bar-b-q's. That mini-challenge started just two days ago, but you can join anytime.
Then we move on to the next 'mini-challenge' - and so it will go, until we get to New Year's Day, 2010!!! Anybody who is low-carbing (or wants to!) can join us at any point in the 130 days of challenges. I'll be glad to see you there - just be sure to post a note in the "100 Day PLUS" thread and throw a holler at me!
Monday, August 24, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Considering my terrible neglect in sharing any of the deliteful designs of my humble life, I was grateful to return to the blog and find a few followers. Shari and Jen, you inspired me to start bloggin' once more. Thank you - and I'll catch up with you dear ones asap...
Quick Update: All this while, I've been hanging on the periphery of the lowcarb world, alternating as always, and still I lost no more inches or pounds. The old body simply won't budge. I admit I am tired of the battle, but then - I honestly don't want to give up.Then a few weeks ago I quit smoking (again, for the upteenth time) - and though I refused to look at the scale, I could feel the gain. Water retention got me with a vengeance. And, oh, the headaches! Out came the lemon water to fight the swelling. To add insult to injury, Hormonal Flux recently hit, and the resulting blah-bloat joined the party.
I knew I was losing the battle. I had to know the numbers - because if they were scary enough, I'd get mad and do something about it.
So tonight I gave in. Yes, I got on the scale, which likes to beckon me with its siren song. It dutifully (and perhaps gleefully) gave its report - but I will not repeat how I replied to it (because it really was not polite). The bad news is that 25 lbs. added their nasty selves to my frame in the last few weeks.
Frustrated beyond belief, I finally complained to my husband, who started out well enough by remarking, "Well, you've done really great so far. You can do it again." He should have stopped right there, because that's really all I needed to hear. After all, just a little vote of confidence takes me a long, long way. But no, he thought he'd be very helpful by adding, "But you're right - you can see that you've gained weight."
As any woman in her right mind would understand, I was not pleased with my beloved. However, I decided to bite my tongue because an immediate vision of Jabba the Hut (female version), wearing my clothes, literally waddled thru my mind. (Actually, did Jabba waddle? It was more like a grotesque slithering, wouldn't you say?) At any rate, it wasn't a pretty picture.
And then it happened - that old glow of determination, like the dying embers of a fire, suddenly stoked. You can call it being ticked off, mad, extremely annoyed or whatever - but when that glow hits, I take stock of what needs to be done...and then I do it. The only problem is - I've low-carbed in earnest for over two years, and though I lost so much weight, I cannot lose anymore. (And I really do need to!) I can, however, easily gain. What do I need to do - stop eating any carbs? I have to say I didn't like the Zero Carb approach one bit. (That's just me - it works for others who are quite happy with it. More power to them, too!) Other options I've considered: Try calorie-counting? I do that already with Fitday, along with counting everything else.
So, in other words...Now what?
I know the benefits of the low-carb lifestyle. And I chose not to lose them.
Low carbing and some form of exercise just has to do it. Those pounds really must go! The only thing I can think to do is return to Induction - whether it's Atkins, EFGT, or Protein Power. How to decide which one, I'm not sure, since I've done them all. Maybe I'll just close my eyes and say, "Eenie-meenie-miney-mo" and pick one that way. The point is: I have to believe that determination and perseverance will eventually pay off (in spades, no less!).
In any case: What the good-guy character Rick McConnell in the "The Mummy" once said to the Scorpion King is what I say to those extra pounds..."Go to h-ll ---and take your friends with you!" ;>
Ok, enough with being "naughty." (!!!)
Today, because I felt so ill, I wasn't very hungry. But I was very good to myself with proteins, a bit of fats, and a soothing smoothie. For all I know, I had gained 30 lbs. this past month (would that I could lose that much in the same time frame!), so perhaps I'll start dropping the enemy pounds in another day or two. (Except I found out that the one and only smoothie I drank today had a bit of sugar in it, since my 'baby' son, now 11, wanted to pamper Mom - bless his heart - but he forgot that Hershey's syrup is a no-no for me. I thought that chocolate-flavored whey protein was just a bit too sweet, and I was right.)
Ah, well. As Scarlett once said, with stars in her eyes:
"After all, tomorrow is another day." (May I have her determination, without her faults!)
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
The real secret is in those three little words. I have a few more to share (please take your pick which you like best!): Make it so. Just do it. Stay on plan. Kick the carbs.
Ok, so how to keep it simple? The answer features three easy tips to remember.
1) Eat clean.
Focus on real fats and proteins first, with a small helping of lc veggies for lunch and/or dinner. That means real foods, no lc or 'sugar free' snacks, whether store-bought or homemade, no sugar-free ice cream, and no nitrates, sulfates, or aspartame. An extra tip: For the first two weeks of low-carbing, totally avoid nutmeats. (Nutmeats are good for us, but it's very easy to over-indulge.)
2) Eat to satisfaction, not to the point of being stuffed.
If you're truly hungry between meals, eat a small protein snack with a full glass of cold water or with a cup of tea with half-n-half or real whipping cream, or brewed, natural green tea lemon. [Whatever you do, please avoid starving yourself - that sets up your metabolism for Starvation Mode. Ask me how I know.] Want a sweetener with your tea? Try natural stevia...there's a lot of scary news about aspartame out there (just search the Net!).
3.) Take your vitamins!
(For general ideas on what you will need, please see the sidebar for "Do You Know What Your Supplements Are?")
Due to my own experience, my honest opinion comes down to this: The 'simpler' we keep the menus, the 'easier' we hit our goals for health and fitness. If we get too wrapped up over 'what' we are going to eat for our daily meals, we might talk ourselves right out of our healthy resolutions. Sure, eating is meant to be enjoyable, but who says simple can't be good?
After all, we can save the lc treats for very special occasions - and I mean very special. After all, a treat is supposed to be a rare thing, not a regular indulgence.
Dr. Atkins once said 'just one bite' of a 'treat' is the kiss of death to everything so far accomplished. It can and probably will take one full week - yes, seven days - for our quirky metabolisms to get chugging again. Who needs the agony of self-recrimination? "I can't believe I ate the whole thing." Some people accept what happened, accept the consequences and get right back on track; others have a much more difficult time, falling into the same old traps repeatedly.
I have a simple solution for that one: Imagine a huge skull and cross bones on that 'treat' - and nip that temptation right in the proverbial bud. Then laugh at that stupid 'goodie' and think, "Hah! Lead me not into temptation" - and walk away. We are definitely strong enough to refuse the poison - and we're worth it, too!
Our real aim is proper nutrition to force our whacky metabolisms into working as they should, which means adequate calories (1200 being the absolute lowest for a woman, 1800 for a man), enough fat intake for the thyroid, enough protein to maintain the body's repair systems (so "Ye Olde Metabolism" won't dig into our own protein and muscle reserves, which is bad news), and a lot less carbs to force the metabolism to draw on its fat reserves.
After all, people, this is war! War against Syndrome X or Metabolic Syndrome or insulin resistance - different names for what is essentially the same metabolic issue. How we plan our lc menus greatly depends on how much we want to win all the battles. The direct, simple approach works beautifully. Even if one battle in the war is longer than we expected, we should have every intention of winning the whole war with flying colors, wild fanfare and lots of trumpets!
For those interested in 'keeping it simple,' I'm happy to share an example of today's menu (which is also quite appropriate for Atkins Induction):
B: 3 hb eggs, 2 slices of fried hard salami, 12 oz. black tea with 3 tbsp. half-n-half
L: 2 cups lettuce, 6 oz. chicken, 2 tbsp. cheddar cheese, 2 tbsp. real bacon bits, 1 condiment pkg of full-fat ranch dressing
D: Ditto lunch plus 1 slice baked bacon
Liquids for the day: 135 oz. water and 12 oz. tea with half-n-half. (Oh, and a few Sugar-Free Rockstars!)
Vitamins and Minerals: Micro-K (Potassium), Vitamin E, Vitamin B Plus (Super B's), Acetyl Carnitine, etc.
Fat Grams 109
Carb Grams 15 total (not net)
Protein Grams 147
For the low-carb lifestyle, those are good numbers...they are not too low, not too high, but 'just right.' (Alright...Say goodnight, Goldilocks!) :>
Should you also have a low-carb blog, too, please join the Followers list of Delightful Designs of the Divine Miss M...and I'll return the favor!
In a world wherein the "low-carb lifestyle" is still viewed with a jaundiced eye, those of us who know the great health benefits of low-carbing really have to stick together!
Focusing on EFGT (Eat Fat, Get Thin) had good results - to a degree. That is, I lost 14.6 lbs. total - three times in just a little two weeks. The scale simply wouldn't go lower. In fact, it bounced. Every Saturday, I hit the same number. On Sunday, the scale number bounces right up. No change in the woe, no cheating. And it takes days to get that 3 lb. overnight bounce off. I don't blame EFGT for that problem. No, something else is going on, and it's been going on for well over a year!
Since the end of November 2007, the 'stall-gain' has been my "Never-Ending Story." Well, it's time for that story to end! Not only am I tired of it, I'm sure those who read this blog are tired of hearing about it. Either way, that doesn't seem fair - and you know, it really isn't.
Obviously, the low-carb lifestyle offers all kinds of great health benefits. Slower weight loss, as one approaches goal, is expected. However, no weight or no inches lost or, even worse, stall-gains for welll over a year is plain insulting and downright demoralizing! Some time ago, I concluded this finickety body must have reached a point where it needs increased exercise, even as I alternate it.
Though I reached that conclusion awhile back, I did not want to act on it. That is because I tried the alternate route before (alternating exercises from toning to cardio, etc.) - and it didn't work for me. I hurt myself when switching to toning/cardio exercises, even though I followed instructions at a local workout place. The 'hurt' was not due to incorrectly performing the exercises. Nope - it seems fibromyalgia was the real cause.
Even though I previously worked out faithfully for 5 months, building myself up for the next phase of exercise, it seems I can't handle machines, even set at the lowest weights. Fibro muscles can manage them for awhile but not for long (in my case, within one short week of M-W-F workouts, I was experiencing severe breast tissue pain. Doc says the tissues were inflamed from the toning exercises. It took a month to recover!).
Seeking an alternative, I discovered Callenetics. They don't hurt me. Yep, I feel the muscles stretching, but the next day there is only very mild soreness. That, I can handle. Callenetics are challenging, providing a total body workout that stretches muscles first. There are no pulsing movements but graceful and steady 'holds' of position. Once I finish a set, I find myself totally relaxed and ready for sleep.
That said, I'm not an afecionado of workout DVD's. Maybe it has to do with doing exercises in the house. I prefer to go out and 'do something.' Still, preferences about where to exercise don't matter if I can't get any exercise accomplished!
So one thing at a time. First, I'm going to start anew with my favorite exercise, and alternate it with something different. My ultimate goal is to exercise each day. For now, it might be every other day, to let my muscles rest and repair between workouts. I'm not going to worry too much about time, but my goal is at least 1/2 hour of daily, focused exercise - steady walking, Callentics, or water exercises. I'm also seriously looking into Zumba, because that's my idea of plain, old-fashioned fun!
I admit I don't like the idea of lots of exercise, and I'll say why:
First, I'm a regular Jane, who must take something from her day to get that exercise done. (Believe me, if I could live in a sunny, low-humidity state and swim and exercise in the pool all day, while my personal chef made our family's healthy, low-carb meals, and my nanny watched the kids, and a tutor taught them at home, that would be my equivalent of earthly paradise.)
Second, I do ponder the future and wonder if I will have to not only exercise daily but will eventually have to increase it. That's a scary thought. How will I get the time to do it?
Housework, unfortunately, isn't enough exercise. Walking up the steps a few times a day doesn't quite get it, nor does standing at the sink washing or drying dishes, and that sort of thing. On the other hand, low-carbing and my self-designed Water Workouts now allow me to stand at that sink without pain. Ditto with the steps (even though I still creak at the knees!). And I can walk now, standing straight up - without a cane. No cane, very little pain. I couldn't do that before low-carbing and thrice-weekly Water Workouts. The point is that I refuse to lose all the good I've "gained."
So...alternate the exercise it is! I know, too, that exercise has to get one to the point of a windedness. (Not gasping for air, but just enough so that one can only speak a few words as one exercises. Then you know you're pushing yourself to the right limit.)
Anyway, regular exercise (along with low-carbing) is the goal for this month. I figure 14.6 lbs. in a few weeks is very good, but seeing that scale jump right up 2 more lbs. on February 1st got me plain mad. Mad as in very determined.
As the old saying goes: When the going gets tough, the tough get going!
Monday, January 19, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
"The Magic Shot" is the name of a theory regarding weight loss results between first time low-carbers and 'returning' low carbers. That theory states first-time low carbers do wonderfully well as they start out ("The Magic Shot"), but that "returns" - that is, individuals who started lowcarbing, lost some weight, left the lifestyle and then eventually returned to it - don't experience the same success the second time around. In other words, the theory says "returns" will lose the fat but not at the same rate as they did the first time. Hence, first time low-carbers are warned not to blow "The Magic Shot."
I don't know if my 19 day "hiatus" from low-carbing (after living the lc-ing lifestyle since May 2007) applies to that Magic Shot "rule." Perhaps those 19 days was just long enough (but not too long) to convince my metabolism that I was up to no good - for good. If so, I'm glad it's been tricked!
Since re-starting just 2 days ago with EFGT (Eat Fat, Get Thin), I have already lost 7 lbs.! Now that's the sort of loss 'newbie' low-carbers usually experience. However, I can't say that happened to me. Way back when, I did lose an average of a pound a day. In fact, I dropped about 28 lbs. back in May 2007, a loss which I still regard as incredible. Then I hit the infamous 3 (or 4) week "stall."
I've also read that lowcarbers will find that returning to 'regular' or 'normal' eating (while calorie counting) - for a very short time, perhaps a week or two - can reverse "stall gains" or kill plateaus. Maybe that's what did it. Nineteen days of 'normal' eating, and then sliding easily into a 'lower carb" lifestyle of 65 grams might have kicked the metabolism where it needed to be kicked.
Hmmm. All these "if's, and's or but's" can get confusing. But that is also why I'm not afraid to tweak or try something 'new' when it comes to low-carbing, like rotating carbs and fats. Those of us who discovered we need to low-carb for health and fitness have that one thing in common. Still, just because we know low-carbing is our answer does not mean we are metabolic equals. What works for me may work for you, or it may not.
I maintain that low-carbing is not the same for everybody. Some can use one lc plan and stick with it and get to goal, with nary a problem. Some can stick with, for example, South Beach and experience wonderful progress and success. Others could never tolerate the carbs allowed on SB and so follow Atkins or Protein Power. Some of us - like me - have to experiment with various low-carb plans by rotating them, because we get stuck in one place for too long a time. There is the difference between men and women. Everybody knows that men will lose fat quicker than women. Not fair but it's a scientific fact. The differences between two low-carbing women can be just as great as between a man and a woman. We have to find out if we must be tweakers or not. I already know I have to tweak, and it can drive me crazy. I'd much rather stick with one plan. But that is now how my metabolic dice rolled...
So after 19 months of low-carbing (with 12 of those months one mean stall, along with its evil fraternal twin brother - the intermittent stall-gain), I went "off plan" because I was heart-sick, tired, and fed up. I can't say I was calorie-counting during that time, because I was not keeping a food log. I had walked away from all that, taking a total break from my usual low-carb routine, which usually includes weighing myself right away plus faithfully recording activity and menus in FitdayPC.
I can say I did not go overboard with 'normal' eating. However, as mentioned in a previous post, I did eat things I usually avoid like the plague.
Restarting with EFGT seems to be a good choice for me. Of course, it is too soon to tell but I am elated anyway! Perhaps this woe will help me figure what in the world has been going on the past year. Perhaps I need even more fats that I thought I did. Or perhaps it is because I took in most of my proteins, fats and carbs first thing in the morning, lessening the amounts with the remaining two meals of the day. That is because I followed the EFGT recommendation, which goes like this:
In the morning, eat like a king. At lunch (or dinner, as it is also called), eat like a prince. For supper, eat like a pauper.
My daily protein intake is about the same (90 grams, since I decided to try the higher end of the EFGT guidelines. On EFGT, my lowest daily protein gram intake should be about 70). With Protein Power, the recommended protein gram amt. was 120 grams but I have long cycled between 90-120 grams. The highest amount of EFGT carb grams (65) are more than my usual low-carb intake (20-30). Fat grams were 75 and 85, respectively, over the last two days - technically, I should have had much more on EFGT. I think that, when I lower the daily carb grams, I'll up the fats.
Actually, I'm quite surprised at the good results so far. That surprise is not due to the woe, but to the way my metabolism has been misbehaving the last few months. I honestly didn't expect such quick results!
Naturally, I'll stick with it as long as it works (let's hope it lasts for at least a few weeks!). I still have the same goal to lose 8-10 lbs. a month. I would bet money that scale losses will significantly slow down after that (please, Lord, not before). I'll be fine with that if the inches start to defrag themselves and keep defragging. :)
During this quiet time in January, I think I'll again re-read all my low-carb books, too. Every time I go through them, I find gems that didn't apply to me before but may be what I need now.
Know what I mean, sugar-free jellybean?
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
First, I should reiterate that, yes, I really lost 100 lbs. from May 2007 to November 2007. (Sometimes, I can barely believe it myself.) After that, it was a roller-coaster, so to speak. I usually stayed in the same lb. range, but I could (and did) easily gain weight all through winter, usually about 10 lbs. up and then down. As I've said before, the gains were not due to cheating. It just seems I've hit 'the plateau' - and how!
Through the summer of 2008, I tried different tips and tweaks, including Zero Carb. The result was a slight drop but then it would come right back. Mentally, I began to call my lifestyle of diet and exercise "The Boomerang Diet." You know how that one goes, right? You stay on plan and then ---you lose, you gain, you lose, you gain. The weight you lost keeps coming back to you, just like a boomerang. Get it?
It seemed my body kept re-setting the number at which it wanted to stay, so that my total fat loss was 95 lbs. I'd get back to 97 lbs. lost, and then the boomerang hit again. Sometimes the boomerang effect was over-kill. The scale wasn't budging downward and neither was the measuring tape.
Going upward - ah, that was way too easy!
From this past October thru December (2008), it was the same story. I fought back like the dickens but, once the early snow began in October, it's been a losing battle (no pun intended). If you read this blog, you know that snow and high humidity get me with water retention, every time. As you can imagine, I was really disgusted when the scale kept going up.
After my late November surgery, I gained 10 more lbs. in one week, just by eating chicken noodle soup and, once or twice a day, regular soda (clear liquids). Water wasn't getting it at that time, and I figured regular soda was better than aspartame-laced soda, but...Talk about carb intolerance and insulin sensitivity! Then I got sick for the holidays and throughout the holidays. I'm only now beginning to regain some strength.
Frankly, at that point, I almost gave up with the low-carbing. I never thought it would happen to me, but it did. After 1 year and 7 months of steady low-carbing, I threw in the towel, although I promised myself it would be temporary.
On Christmas Day, my attitude was plain and to-the-point: "To heck with this," and I decided to stop weighing myself every day, stop lowcarbing for awhile and just eat "normally." When I say 'normally,' I do not mean going wild in the kitchen and leaving a path of empty, tossed bags of carby junk behind me. I just ate like people without Metabolic Syndrome or Syndrome X do - you know, people who don't have certain health issues. That means I ate a bagel with my eggs and sausage one day, or I added toast another day. I had a cup of mashed potatoes with dinner a few times. I had soup with little bow-tie noodles. Once I had pasta. Another day I had pizza; it wasn't satisfying - that I can say, so I said no more of that. I ate nutmeats when and as I wanted them, and also some baked goods like banana bread. Usually I ate just twice a day. It wasn't alot but it was enough to do some damage. And I did that up until this past weekend, but all the time I was worrying about it.
End result: I gained 10 more lbs. Total weight gain since October 1: About 40 lbs.!
And you know what? I didn't need the scale to tell me. I can feel it. My newer and smaller clothes are uncomfortably snug, my face is rounder, and I feel 'wobbly' and 'jiggly' in places that should not wobble or jiggle.
So enough of that. Sure, I had to have surgery and then I got sick with some nasty virus...those were setbacks. Yes, I've been grieving and worrying, and I still am. Yet I know that those whom I loved and who loved me, and those still here who also love me and who I love, too, would not want me to lose the health I've so far regained.
As of Sunday just passed, I realized that I will not have a defeatist attitude. Instead, this will be my view of the whole situation: I had to let go for awhile, so I could "spit on my hands" and get a better grip.
There is also this reality: Even if I never get to my dream goal, sticking with the 95 lb. loss is much healther than slowly regaining all that weight. Do I want to be in constant pain again, perpetually walk hunched over again because my herniated disks can't stand the strain of all that weight, use a cane and wheelchair again, have high blood pressure again, endure GERDS again, and have to take meds again? No. Never "again"!
So here's my plan. I'm re-starting just like I did in May 2007 but this time, I know a bit more than I did then, like...
-I know how to cycle or 'rotate' carbs.
-I know about drinking clear water, and how much I need to drink.
-I know the lemon water trick, too, and I know the carbs are negligible, especially when one thinks of all its benefits.
-I know that I have to change my exercise routine every 3 weeks, because the body is a smart cookie (oops, sorry) and catches on to energy output and input.
-I know there are certain natural supplements that help me - alot.
-I know many other 'tricks and tips.'
-In other words, I know how to live a low-carb lifestyle and I know how 'shake it up.'
As the old saying goes: Knowledge is power!
The first step is simply to start and to start simply - just by eating low carb. As I regain my strength and even more motivation, I'll restart with my favorite form of exercise - water aerobics! I would love to get in the water every day, but the weather here is not conducive to 'water workouts.' In the winter, I have to make sure my hair is completely dry and give all the body pores time to close before I leave the community center, otherwise I will get sick. That's just the way it is.
If the weather doesn't cooperate, then I'll go to Exercise Plan B: Callenetics. They really do work on stretching and strengthening the muscles! They're also very relaxing. I'll do Callenetics for 3 weeks (and pray that winter passes quickly so I can return to the water), and then I'll rotate to a completely different form of exercise, like weight training.
Yesterday, my woe was EFGT (Eat Fat, Get Thin)...and I lost 2 lbs as of this morning. Today I planned on doing Protein Power. However, after looking at today's food log, I realize it was still EFGT. That's ok...the important thing is that I have started anew.
Who knows? After a few days of EFGT, I may just try Lindora.
How's that for a "shake up plan"?
There are some people who are so 'real,' so full of the joy of living, so quick to love, so compassionate, and so strong - physically and emotionally - and who possess the funniest (but endearing) quirks that they always have an alluring aura about them. When they walk into a room, one is immediately aware of that presence and happy for it. When people like that die, as we all must some day, it just doesn't seem it could have happened so soon.
To all of us, circumstances occur that make life worth living. Some things take life out-of-balance, because we have lost, or know we will soon lose, someone so very dear to us. I learned that lesson young. Every time worries and sorrows come, the lesson is relearned.
When life gets harder, it's time to hope and pray and go into a 'quiet place' in one's soul. I had to get off the proverbial saddle and 'walk' it again for awhile, to think and ponder and thresh out so many things.
Although in the past months I didn't have the heart to write about low-carbing, a thought about it dawned on me. I knew it before and yet, once in a blue moon, one experiences an "epiphany" about something one has long known. That is, we see a truth of which we've always been aware, but we see it in a brief and beautiful glimpse of light which helps our own understanding of that particular truth deepen.
The lessons about life and love and joy and loss and sorrows and death have everything to do with why we're living a low-carb lifestyle. We do it because we want to live the lives God gave us, not just endure them because we too early lost our vitality.
In reality, what we eat and whether or not we exercise is just a part of our lives. Other things, especially people, happen in life that are even more important.
Absolutely, we can make low-carbing a path to a healthier life, but let's be sure to enjoy life as we low-carb, too. While we should try (very hard!) not let other things get in the way of our low-carb goals, neither should we let that goal get in the way of enjoying our loved ones and our lives. There's no reason we can't do both.
Especially since I began low-carbing in earnest, my personal motto has been: This day, I will stay on plan. It meant I wasn't going to mess up any day with a useless cheat, one I would later bitterly rue. No, I was sticking with the plan, day by day. It meant I didn't overly worry about tomorrow or the weekend. "Let the day be sufficient to itself." Isn't that what we're supposed to do in all things, not just when it comes to the low-carb lifestyle?
So, with just a simple addition, my personal motto is now "updated and improved":
This day, I will stay on plan and make each day count, in time and for eternity.