Some of you have noticed that I have lost weight…and you’re right. I have. One reader asked how I’ve gone about it and I promised to explain in a post.
But first, let’s go back three years to the summer of 2009 when I was 41-years-old. This photo was taken at my brother’s home in Las Vegas.
I’m not sure how much I weighed in this photo. I recall getting as high as 194 pounds before I stopped weighing myself. At 6′ 2″, I was about a size 14 and a BMI of 24.9. I was nudging up against the “overweight” BMI category which is 25 – 29.9.
Many of my clothes weren’t fitting properly and I felt pretty down about my appearance. I had low energy, terrible PMS, and I thought about food around the clock.
I pulled back on the portions and snacking and slowly dropped about 10 pounds over the course of a year. I hovered around the 180 – 185 range mark right around the time I started my blog in June of 2010.
I discovered Mindless Eating a few months into blogging and read it from cover to cover. I recommend this book to anyone trying to shed a few pounds regardless of their way of eating. It helped me to adopt some great eating habits which led me to lose another several pounds until I settled into the high 170’s.
I didn’t move much from that weight for a long, long time. And that was fine with me. At about 177, I was a size 10/12 and a BMI of 22.7 – well within the healthy weight range for my height.
But I feel my best at a lower weight, but not skinny; skinny is never a goal of mine. I look and feel my best at around 162 -168 pounds, a BMI of about 21+. Currently, I weigh 165 pounds.
Last November, my husband Bill and I cut out almost all sugar and carbohydrates. We are essentially on a modified Atkins diet. Modified because we don’t count carbs, we just consistently choose low carb foods, and we did not do the initial induction part where you consume 20 carbs a day for two or more weeks. If I had to guess how many carbs I eat in one day, it would range from 30 – 50 grams.
Many of the foods we eat are organic and whole foods, but I do eat low carb bars twice a week or more and I treat myself to a sugar free candy or ice cream bar every now and then. I enjoy low carb tortillas and low carb flax bread and we even eat low carb pasta once in a great while.
Low carb diets are NOT for everyone*. Some people don’t do well on a low carb diet and actually gain weight. And for others, it’s just too strict a program to adhere to.
We are all different; there is no cookie-cutter diet that suits all of us. But it is a lifestyle that works well for me. And not just because it keeps me at the weight I like. I have other reasons, too:
~ Bloating used to be a regular occurrence for me. Now, it only happens occasionally and it’s either hormonal or it’s because I ate something with hidden sugar or grains.
~ PMS is less dramatic, but not gone altogether thanks to peri-menopause. It has lessened since I cut out the sugar and carbs and this makes me and my family very happy.
~ Break outs around my jaw and chin areas used to be an everyday thing. No more. My skin is very clear.
~ Because I am married to a man who is connected to not one, but two fire departments, a good night’s sleep is rare. When I do sleep, I sleep soundly. My sleep issues are now due to outside disruptions, not spikes in my blood sugar before bed.
~ I have a clearer mind and don’t get brain fog the way I used to.
~ I don’t think about food ALL the time like I do when I eat a steady diet of sugar and flour. I have changed from a live-to-eat person to an eat-to-live. Cravings are not part of my world so I don’t have to play games with myself to avoid temptation.
~ Buy less food and better food. I buy organic whenever I can and I shop the periphery of the store (produce, meats, dairy), except for a few items like canned salmon, tuna, tomatoes, and the like and a few frozen vegetables.
~ No afternoon crashes that used to call for cups of coffee or pots of tea to get me through until dinner.
A very slow weight loss using a combination of behavioral changes I learned from Mindless Eating, and choosing foods that my body does best with – minimal sugar and low carbohydrates – has gotten me to my ideal weight. Almost 30 pounds have been shed since 2009.
|April 2, 2012|
In case you are curious to know, my husband has also lost weight along with me. He is down about 15 pounds since November and he looks great!
|Valentine’s Day, 2o12|
The weight loss phase is over as I don’t want to lose any more weight. 165 pounds is a great, healthy number for me. Now, I am just maintaining it and enjoying adding in more low sugar fruits to my diet.
Next, I am planning to incorporate regular exercise to my routine. I have been very bad about making exercise part of my life and that needs to change in order to keep my body strong and my heart healthy as I age.
*I am in no way a nutritionist or a medical professional. Please consult with your doctor before you begin a low carb diet to make sure it’s right for you.