Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Exercise and no weight loss

So after my 40 pound weight loss with the use of chitosan fiber supplements, I had more energy and wanted to continue the downward trend. The pills stopped working, but I figured by exercising, I could lose even more weight.

My first structured activity was belly dancing. Every Wednesday night I went to an hour long class and learned to dance. It was so much fun and after a few classes, I started huffing and puffing less, and I noticed my flexibility improving. My buddy, Jo, who originally talked me in to the class never went beyond the first class even though I continue to take classes to this day. Her work schedule changed, but because of her high blood pressure, she still wanted to work out and knew I was looking to increase my activity level.

She then suggested water aerobics. Well, bad knees and bad hips run in the family, and while belly dancing was helping my flexibility, I was still 40 years old! I thought water aerobics was a great idea. We began going twice a week at our local community center. The teacher was fantastic and the classes were high energy and really fun. But despite my dramatic increase in activity and positive changes in my eating habits. The scale did not budge.

Week after week I took the water aerobics classes, the belly dance class, and then started to add walking. Sometimes I walked by myself, sometimes with Jo as her schedule allowed, but I was averaging an hour workout 6 days a week. I was getting toned. I felt great after the workouts, but still, the scale refused to move.

I was frustrated, but with the increase in flexibility, and great people at both my dance class and the water aerobics class, I continued the classes and the walking for almost 2 years. Then Jo got a different job. I lost my workout buddy...my "personal trainer" as my husband called her. And then Winter hit with a vengeance. It was so easy not to go out and do anything during a blizzard. I stopped going to water aerobics, I stopped walking, but I still went to dance class.

It didn't take long for me see the scale creeping upward instead of staying stubbornly at 240 like it had for the past 3 years. As Spring approached, I was up to 250. I had to make a change, but I had tried all kinds of diets before with no success. Then one day I was with Jo at a festival. One of the churches near the festival site was having a book sale. We walked over and started looking through the stacks. I grabbed a book that sounded interesting... The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet by Rachael & Richard Heller.

I knew I fit the profile for a carbohydrate addict. Eating rice, corn, bread or sugary snacks just made me hungry for more. I didn't totally embrace the idea of a reward meal, but it was still a good book with some great concepts. And more importantly, it got me thinking more and more about starting a low carb lifestyle. About a year earlier, I had purchased the Rosedale Diet ebook and there seemed to be some overlap. Things started to slowly click in to place. But could I really do a "diet"?

I hate counting ANYTHING let alone carbs and calories. I have the attention span of a 2 year-old on Pixie Stix! And telling me I can't have something is the surest way to make me want something more. And tell me how to behave? I will just likely scream "You're not the boss of me!" Like I said in my previous post...I am a rebel without a clue :D So was low carb really a diet for me?

Next.... Going Low Carb

Monday, July 30, 2007

Meet Wifezilla

I am a tad stubborn...or so I am told. I like to do things my way. Since childhood I have been a rebel without a clue.

Maybe there is something wrong with my brain. I am left handed after all. Maybe there are some other crossed wires. More than one person has asked me if I have ever been diagnosed with ADHD. No doubt, if I was a kid in grade school today, my mother would be getting notes from my teachers touting the wonders of Ritalin. I even have a friend who is autistic and has dissociative identity disorder. It is her verdict I am not as normal as I might like to think. If anyone knows crazy, it's her!

So knowing I am a bit different, it shouldn't surprise anyone that when it came time to lose weight, I would take a path that others would call insane. I am on a high-fat, low carb diet. I started in May doing a general low carb diet after reading The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet. Previously I had read The Rosedale Diet. Both had some good points, but neither option seamed to totally "click" with me.

Despite that, I knew I had to lose the weight somehow. At 6' tall I was 280 lbs and wearing sized 22 clothes. Heart disease and diabetes were in my future, as it had been for many family members. I had two uncles die of heart disease in their 40's and I was going to be 40 soon. I had to wake up.

Restricted calories is something I had tried before with disastrous results. Like many others who followed this path, I was all gung-ho, lost a little weight, and then eventually cracked...binging on Little Debbie's Swiss Rolls, Hagendaas Ice Cream or big bags of Doritos. Restriction and deprivation just made me think about food constantly, obsess about what I was missing, gave me headaches and an upset stomach. Then, after a pathetically small weight loss, I would gain back all the dropped weight, then proceed to gain more.

I even tried supplements, diet pills, diet shakes and other expensive products. One even worked a little bit. I had managed to go from 280 down to 240 using chitosan fiber pills. Of course I was constipated the whole time, but hey...the weight was coming off! Then suddenly it stopped working. As disappointing as that was, I had still managed to lose 40 pounds and had a bit more energy. I had just turned 40 along with my friend Jo. She wanted to do something wild to celebrate turning 40 and talked me in to taking a belly dance class. It was fun, I liked the exercise, and have been going ever since. This began my exercise phase.

Next... Working out and not losing