Friday, December 14, 2007

I need a better pick-me-up

I've been feeling on the down and hopeless side since my weigh-in, I'm really trying to fight this feeling of disappointment but it doesn't help that alot of things in life right now seem to be going wrong. I need a pick-me-up but I just can't think of anything exciting to do or get that I have time for or that I can afford.

Books usually do it for me but I'm already 3 days late in handing in my research review paper I really don't need the distraction of a book right now (finished the fear and loathing book). I haven't been in the mood to socialize or hang out except with my best friend whose having a worse time than me right now with her killer first semester of grad school. I'd like to have a spa day or at least get a massage for my aching body but I know I shouldn't spend that kind of money-I already have to buy a couple of graduation gifts.

So I resorted to the easy and dangerous comforting thing to do the last 2 nights, pigging out. I haven't had an all out binge fest or anything. The night of my weigh-in I hate half of a cheeseburger (it was a big burger) and some jack in the box macaroni bites. Last night I gave into to some fritos and rice with fried potatos (my mom's cooking), then a mini twix bar. This is all post-dinner. My mom has been noticing my pigging out lately and hasn't spared me of her comments "aren't you on a diet or something?"

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

1 pound down, Reavaluating goals

I kicked my ass this week and the scale went down a pound. I don't feel bloated and I don't think I put on muscle mass because I've just been doing cardio (occasional situps). I was looking at my chart today at the clinic and have realized that I've been in the 160s for the past 2 and a half months, the lowest being 164 (166 today). I think it's safe to say that after 25 pounds lost I'm going through my plateau stage; I'd like to think I've been making alot of changes the past couple of weeks, but I'm still stuck in place.

I vented this to the counselor and she suggested that I should think about doing the NO-NO diet for one week which is something they recommend to clients at the plateau. It's pretty much not eat carbs for a week. Sometimes it takes something that drastic to "shock" my body and get things moving again. She wasn't being pushy about it and said it's completely up to me if I feel like I'm up for something like this. I need some advice, what did you guys to get out of your plateau (if you have had one)?

As I was staring at the weight ticker I realized that perhaps I was not realistic in setting my goal weight to be 105 which is a weight I reached when I went on a summer starvation diet when I was 16. I think I would be more than happy to be 115 and considering I'm 5"1 it is a realistic goal to reach. So instead of staring at 61 lbs to lose I can stare at 51 lbs to lose, sounds so much better!

Monday, December 10, 2007

I feel good!

This is a random post about nothing in particular except to say that I'm feeling good! My weigh-in is wednesday at 11 AM and although I know it's not great to obsess about the numbers it's still a "rough" way to assess my progress. Last month I had a net loss of zero on the scale so no matter how you feel about "the numbers" that just can't be a good thing. Water and muscle weight can't account for weekly discrepancies but not an entire month! That means I have to step it up.

Actually the month before I belive I even put on 2 pounds. Thus it's safe to say I'm going through my plateau stage. December is going to be different, I'll make sure of that because it IS in my control!

I've been doing great with the gym, I've gone 3 out of the 5 days thus far (since my last weigh-in) and the two days I missed were planned missed days so that I can allocate more time to work on my research edits (due tomorrow). I've been eating alot better, yesterday I bought this amazing turkey-apple-brie wrap from the fresh market and ate half of it for lunch-I ate the other half this morning for breakfast. I'm trying to get as many raw fruits and veggies in my day as possible. I've eaten quite a few tomatos, cucumbers, and apples and you know what, I actually like them! Especially fat dark green cucumbers when they're really crunchy. Keep in mind this is coming from a fast food junkie.

I admit it hasn't been a perfect week, but honestly what week has been perfect? It's all part of the challenge, the little mistakes here and there just give you more room for improvement and kinda keeps things fun anyway. I've been taking littles bites here and there well after 8 PM. I've also been getting more servings of carbs than I would like to. That just gives me something else to improve next week!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

My current workout playlist!

In random order here's my preferred gym playlist at the moment:

1) Two Step (remix version)-DJ UNK
2) Living on a prayer - Bon Jovi
3) Tipsy - J-Kwon
4) Shot Through the Heart - Bon Jovi
5) Hanging by a Moment - Lifehouse
6) Bombs over Baghdad - Outkast + Rage against the machine
7) Encore (remix) - Linkin Park + Jay Z
8) Shake Shake - Pitbull
9) Place for my head - Linkin Park
10) I just wanna live - Good Charlotte
11) Desperately wanting - Better than ezra
12) Lose Control - Missy Elliot
13) We Run This - Missy Elliot
14) Come to me - P.Diddy + Nicole
15) The saints are coming - U2 + Green Day
16) King without a crown - Matisyahu
17) Do you know - Enrique Iglesias
18) Get By - Talib Kweli
19) Nookie - Limp Bizkit
20) Pour some sugar on me - Def Leppard

21) I'm open to your awesome recommendations ;)

P.S. I've been doing great with the gym, today I spent an hour and 15 minutes doing different workouts. The food has been more of a struggle, I haven't broken the no fried food rule but I'm finding it hard to not eat after 8PM especially these stressful days (the final research review paper for my masters is due tuesday). I've also been consuming a significant amount of sugar. Yesterday I absent mindedly had 4 chocolate chip cookies and today I ate half a cheesecake slice. I wouldn't normally stress over these little indulgences if it wasn't for the fact that I mysteriously put on 3 pounds last week so I'm feeling the need to step it up.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Macaroni and Cheese Please!

Oh my god people, I'm having like the most intense craving for some macaroni and cheese. I found a box in the pantry but I decided to be smart and give it some time before I do something irrational. Well, I've waited over an hour and I still really really want the mac and cheese!

I can't deprive myself of it, that's counterproductive. It won't be too bad because it doesn't violate my rules for the week. I am allowed 2 servings of carbs a day and the forbidden food of the week is fried food. I'm going to have some, with a plan.

The plan:

a) Make sure I take my supplements first

b) Take a fiber pill 15 minutes before

c) Eat a vegetable beforehand

d) Serve myself HALF of the recommended serving (I've learned to get satisfied on small portions)

e) Serve along with a veggie burger patty (no bun since I'm having macaroni) + turkey and cheese roll ups

f) If not full (I'm almost certain I'll be more than satisfied by then), then I can have the other serving half


Thursday, December 6, 2007

My rockstar dancer personal trainer!

Today I had the first of 3 scheduled 45 minutes personal training appointments after it had to be canceled and rescheduled twice (well 3 times considering I was late today and we had to reschedule it after her next client). When I scheduled the appointments I told my gym to hook me up with the "hard core trainer". I'm on a budget and I was only able to afford the 3 session package thus I want to make the absolute most of it.

Well I was waiting to meet I read her biography posted on the community bulletin and I was pleasantly surprised to find out she's a famous rock star! Well, sort of........

She plays in an indie band that released an album last year and hit the top 20 on college radio stations. They've also gone on a few US tours and have opened for more famous bands. I am a fan of some indie groups and I got excited that I'm going to be working closely with such a person. When I came home I googled them and wathed their performances on youtube, she still looked quite feminine and classy while screaming into the mic and bopping her head.

Aside from being a rockstar, she's also a professional dancer and even attended some dance academy in chicago. She's been teaching dance classes for 8 years now and I was excited to know that she teaches the hip hop classes at my gym and will be starting adult beginner ballet and jazz classes as well. My experience with dance classes at my gym is that they're taught by amateur gymnast college girls who watched some instructional dance DVDs, but I will definitely start attending her classes!

The first session was more of an assessment of where I am and where I want to be. One thing that was really discouraging is when we did the bike test we discovered that I may be overestimating my abilities given my heart condition, we actually had to stop it short. The only thing my cardiologist told me with regards to activity restriction is "just don't train for the olympics". Apparently, when my heart rate is in the 160s, which is very moderate cardio, my blood pressure spiked to 190 which isn't healthy. She strongly advised me not to go over a heart rate in the 150s range when doing cardio; I'm normally in the 170s so I don't understand how I'm supposed to be getting an effective workout with that limitation.

I'm having this renewed motivation and excitement to get in shape now that I have all of these opportunities with such a professional, especially because I felt like she was really listening to me and knew what she was talking about. The next session is in a week but I plan on going to hip hop class tuesday!

What I'll be doing different this week Part2

Fourth, for the next 7 days I should really eliminate one thing problematic out of my diet. I realize that such restriction can be sabotoging and counterprodutive but it's only 7 days; I think the discipline will be good for my morale. I've been thinking about what it should be for the last 5 minutes and I realize it needs to be something effective yet realistic.

The candidates are:

sugar this one might be too difficult especially because lots of my 'healthy snacks' contain some sugar and also I would have to decide whether to include fruit or not

fried food not a bad idea except for the fact that fries are my absolute weakness and I take comfort in the fact that I can have a couple of fries here and there which satisfy me just fine. The same goes for lo mein noodles (yes, they are fried), onion rings, and mini samosas.

butter I'm not sure how effective this one would be considering I don't really consume that much butter anyway. I guess I was just thinking about that delicious buttery omelet I had in the hospital when I put this one down.

white carbs I think this one might be too difficult since I am living with the family and pretty much everything my mom cooks/picks up contains some rice or dough. I eat these things in small portions, but if I was going to completely eliminate the white carbs I'd have to do more of my own cooking/food prep.

high sodium foods not a bad idea and it would help with the feeling of being bloated and water weight, but I'm not sure how effective it would be in terms of fat loss.

carbonated drinks again, not sure about the effectiveness considering I'm doing a good job of staying away from the carbonated drinks as is (I don't drink sugary sodas AT ALL). I only drink the diet sodas when I'm eating out or at a friend's place so it wouldn't be too muh effort on my part to cuth it out for 7 days. I think I need something more challenging.

And the winner is.......... FRIED FOOD!

I'll be having not one bite of fried food until my weigh in next wednesday, I'll let you know how it goes!

What I'll be doing different this week

Ok so I still don't think my 3lb gain for the week makes any sense but the fact is I DID GAIN 3 POUNDS! It wasn't half a pound, or a pound, but an entire 3 pounds and it wasn't water weight either.

If I think back it's easy to see that I was far from perfect; I had lots of late dinners and most of my meals actually consisted of "bad food" despite the fact that my portions were small. So I learned tthat the portion control only goes so far and it's important to balance out what I'm eating.

I'm determined to make this a successful week ( I said the same thing last week), so I have to do things differently and it helps that I'm thinking in terms of one week at a time. First of all, there's a correlation between stress and the way I eat so I need to work on keeping my stress level low which means I should make an extra effort to be on time to my appointments and meetings so that things don't keep getting canceled/rescheduled (my first personal training appointment has already been rescheduled twice), I need to stop putting off my necessary errands for the last minute, and I should really pace myself when doing work (my research) and not wait until 10 PM to start working on edits that my advisor wants to see in the morning. I should also do a better job of getting back to people in a timely fashion, returning phone calls, replying to emails, etc. Putting off all of those things adds to stress.

Second of all, I need to cut out the late dinners. My goal is to not eat after 8PM. If I get antsy there's water, sugar free juices, coffee, and a fiber pill. It's going to be challening to do this but it won't kill me!

Third of all, I need to make some clear-cut rules for me this 7 days regarding food so that I can get back on track and then I can go back to "listening to my body" and being intuitive (which is a great thing), but right now I need this kind of discipline:
a) I will eat at least 4 servings of fruits and veggies a day. I've already got one down so far.
b) I will eat no more than 2 servings of carbs (with the exception of friut) a day. I've already had one.
c) I will drink a minimum of 6 glasses of water a day. I've already had 2.
d) I will have at least 2 snacks day which will be the following items in rotation: fruit that's already in my fridge, string cheese, turkey slices, kashi bar, kashi crackers, almonds, activia yogurt, protein shake. I've already had one.

There's wisdom in part D, it's a list of everything I already have so that way I don't have to keep throwing away food for going stale or bad (contributes to stress) and also I won't spend so much money on food on the go (contributes to stress).

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

My 3lb Gain Makes No Sense!

I got weighed in at the clinic today and to my complete surprise the scale went up an entire 3 pounds!!!

When on any weight loss plan it's natural to have setback and plateaus but usually you know it's coming, this was totally unexpected. I felt great and I was confident I was going to have a loss this week. My activity level was high, yesterday at the gym alone I did about an hour and 15 minutes of cardio. Although my last post was about some bad food I ate in the hospital I still felt it was going to be a good week because I ate in moderation and generally speaking I didn't eat very much food. In all honesty, I felt like I ate more "bad food" thanksgiving week and I lost 4.75 lbs that week. It's just not making sense.

Afterwards I made the counselor weigh me on the body composition machine thinking this is probably muscle mass. Also, I'll be getting a period within the week but still I no longer feel bloated. According to the machine I had actually lost 1.5lbs of muscle since 2 weeks ago (too much cardio and no strength training can do that), I had 1.5 lbs of LESS water weight, and the fat composition actually stayed the same from 2 weeks ago (that was the last time I stepped on the body composition machine).

If I want to be optimistic the fact is I do have a net loss of 1.75 lbs the last 2 weeks but I can't help it, I am really disappointed. I have my first session with a personal trainer in an hour, I'll post later today on what I think I did wrong and what I'll do differently this week. First, I must clear my head from all this pessimism.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Getting rid of water weight

Yesterday I woke up uncomfortably bloated and couldn't stop poking at my tummy in the hopes that it might deflate. I tend to retain water weight easily although I take water pills regularly. I'm determined to have a good weigh-in this wednesday despite my hospital setback so I laid off on the carbs for the day and tried to cut come back on the sodium.

When I got back from the gym around 9PM I still felt like the good year blimp so I googled "getting rid of water weight". I knew there was some kind of quick short-term solution that had to do with eating something or some kind of exercise and I was determined to find it. I browsed the links and to my pleasant surprise I found that cucumbers is a natural remedy, I eat lots of cucumbers and after reading that I went to the kitchen and sliced up another cucumber to consume.

Then I found this article titled how to lose 1 to 5 pounds in 30 minutes. The intructions simply stated to weigh yourself, take a water pill, then sit in an "extremely hot bath" for 30 minutes where you're expected to sweat out water weight as it seeps out of your tissues. After that you dry off and immediately weigh yourself to note the amount of lost water weight.

I grabbed a book and a fizz ball and I believe I followed those directions quite well. The only problem was that I don't have a good tolerance for high temperatures, I don't do well with saunas and hot tubs, so I had to gradually increase the water temperature; however, I do sweat easily so I didn't think that was a big deal and sure enough I was sweating like crazy.

When I dried myself off I got back on the scale and the result was ZERO DIFFERENCE (it's precise to the half pound). The scale was in the exact same position and I got on and off a few times but the numbers didn't budge. I guess my "sweating like crazy" just wasn't enough.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Possible Hospital Setback

I'm now back home, I've spent 3 nights and 4 days in the hospital with my friend.

During that time period I didn't go to the gym but I'm not worried because I got a good bit of physical activity; however, the exhaustion and frustration of the whole scene took over my mind the last 2 days and I wasn't too conscious about what I ate. It's just not the most important thing when your friend next to you is in chronic pain and you can't figure out how to shush a screaming baby. I didn't have that much of an appetite but when I did eat it was whatever I felt like at the moment, and usually later in the day, even late at night. I felt like it was a good idea to make a list of all of the "bad food" I can recall consuming the last couple of day because that helps keep me aware and get me back on track. Here it is:

2 cheeseburgers
3 musketeer
2 french toast
Gyro Sandwich
Cheese omelet (lots of fatteny cheese + butter)

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Hospital Visit

I've spent the last 2 nights and 2 days in the hospital helping out a friend whose having surgery. That's where I'm blogging from at the moment and I'll be here for another day. I actually had scheduled my first appointment with a personal trainer at the gym yesterday in an effort to ensure I get in shape, but I had to reschedule it to Wednesday I'll let you all know how it went.

I knew that I was coming here to be of service so I've taken some steps to make sure my energy level is at its maximum and this includes eating healthy! I've made sure to take all my meds and supplements at the regular time. I also know that when I eat big meals or greasy heavy stuff I get lethargic so to ensure I don't get really hungry to the point of craving bad stuff I've packed a whole bunch of string cheeses and kashi bars; I've also been popping a lot of fiber pills which do an awesome job of making me full on small amounts. I've been eating a lot of soup since it's conveniently available in the hospital. I'm basically not making a big deal of food, I'm just eating little bites of whatever is readily available throughout the day since I feel I'm here for a more important purpose.

During this hospital stay I obviously won't be going to the gym, so that would be a total of 4 days absent from the gym but my activity level has been relatively high here in the hospital. I've been running lots of errands for my friend that I'm helping out so I walk a lot, and there was a day where I was responsible for her 3 week old baby and I was on my feet for the majority of the time. I have a feeling this wednesday's weigh-in will also be another successful one!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Dropped 4.75 lbs thanksgiving week!

I haven't been motivated to blog about weight loss after my weigh in a week ago when I actually put on 2 pounds from the last weigh in (2 weeks before then). I knew I wasn't eating the right foods but I had joined the gym and was faithfully going 5 days a week and my portions were still small (or at least I thought they were) thus I definitely wasn't expecting a gain. I know that muscle weighs more than fat but at that point I was only doing cardio and no strength so I wasn't expecting muscle mass. There had been lots of weeks where I felt I could have eaten better but I still dropped a pound or 2 because I was eating less. I wasn't near my cycle and the gain was just too discouraging.

Anyway, I went for my weigh-in today and I felt good about it beforehand but I wasn't expecting to have lost an entire 4.75 pounds in one week, and thanksgiving week too! I have now lost 27 pounds since I started at the clinic.

The reality is this week as full of stress and some heartbreak due to guy drama and thus I lost my appetite; I found myself forcing food down my throat and since it was all tasteless in my mind I ate alot of cucumbers. I also forced myself to work out extra intensely at the gym in an attempt to clear my mind. This loss is actually the perfect morale booster.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Do your own grocery shopping!

I've realized that if I'm going to be serious about eating healthy I really have to do my own grocery shopping on a regular basis and not rely on whatever my mom brings home. My mom's shopping philosophy is to try to get the most food possible while spending the least amount of money possible-she thinks that's going to keep us on a budget; however, my theory is that budget grocery shopping is counterproductive. It's better to just get what you really like because when you're not crazy about the food options in the house you're more likely to eat out or stop by the drive-thru. I can't stand the cheapest deli meats and cheeses and I prefer to get things fresh over frozen or canned.

So I went down to Target and picked up some basic staple items, about $40 worth of food: whole wheat buns, turkey burger, mushroom veggie burger, almond kashi bars, turkey bacon, healthy choice soup, pink salmon packets, romein lettuce, light string cheese, lean deli turkey, skim mozarella slices, and diet ocean spray. This is all stuff that I KNOW I like and I KNOW I will consume, anything that I was uncertain or that I had to think twice about I didn't purchase. In case you were wondering dinner tonight was a turkey burger with a slice of mozarella cheese melted on the turkey and romein lettuce with a bit of mustard on a wheat bun. It was delicious! Isn't that picture just so pretty?

A couple of days ago I made one of the meals in the recipe packet my nutritionist gave me and took a picture. It's a shrimp cucumber mint salad, very simple to make and I loved it! I personally prefer this type of simple to prepare food over elaborately cooked meals. If you're interested in the recipe and preparation let me know.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Pumpkin Lattes

The pumpkin spice latte from starbucks is my new weakness. I believe I must have had 5 tall sizes in the last week. I didn't look up the calorie and sugar content, nor do I want to at the moment, but I really need to limit this indulgence; however, I do feel like I had a good week generally speaking-I've been going to the gym every other day and I've been eating home cooked food as opposed to eating out more. Today I had grape leaves, grilled shrimp, and broccoli sauteed in olive oil for dinner-all small portions. My next weigh-in and assessment is friday!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Late Night Mac & Cheese

I made the mistake of not having balanced meals and snacks today. By the end of the day I only had eaten one time at around noon and thus I was startving around 10 PM. I didn't take my suppressant in the morning and I'm not sure if it was that or the fact that I skipped eating for so lon that left me ravenous for mac and cheese, so I made some and I used whole milk and butter. I ended up having around 2 servings of it before I couldn't take it anymore. It really wasn't alot of food but I'm sure it'll be more than enough to have me feeling like shit in the morning.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


No, I have not quit!

Yes, I did have some setbacks!

Let's get down to business with regards to my weight loss, since the beginning of ramadan (roughly 2 months ago) I've gone up and done. I gained a couple of pounds during ramadan but lost them all and some and by the end of ramadan (30 days) I had a net loss of 2 pounds. Ramadan ended about a month ago but as my responsibilities increased life got more hectic and I made the mistake of not prioritizing my weight loss. I started skipping the weekly appointments that I'm supposed to go to see a nutritionist and counselor and get my evaluations and I also started taking up eating lots of fast food and to-go. What saved me more than anything is the fact that I was still taking the suppressant although I did skip more days than I should have (went on vacation for a few days and left them behind), thus my portions were still modest but I ate high calorie food and even late into the night as I stayed up late finishing up some reading and writing.

The last evaluation I went to was yesterday and I have actually put back on a pound since my previous evaluation which was a month before; however, I was on my menstrual cycle. Me and the nutritionist/counselor spoke for some time in her effort to remind me why I'm doing this and motivate me again. We both agreed that one of my biggest downfalls is the fact that I'm surrounded with bad food and don't have good food at hand when I'm in a hurry thus I really need to make a list of convenient healthy food, meaning snacks, shakes, string cheeses, kashi bars, lean deli meats and cheeses, and fruits. It's just not realistic to think I'm going to cook or spend lots of time preparing food on a regular basis, that's something I might do once or twice a week. I actually have yet to do the shopping, hopefully tomorrow sometime after the saints game.

So I currently weigh in at 166 lbs, exactly where I left you guys!

In better news, I have signed up for a prepaid (to make sure I go) 6 month gym membership around 2 weeks ago and have been consistently going every other day. So far I've only been doing cardio and abs, I'm goaling to start strength training this week! Keep checking back I'll be updating you guys more regularly and with better news!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ramadan and Weight Loss

Hello everyone! To update you I'll be fasting for 30 days in observation of the holy month of Ramadan which started 10 days ago. The fast is from sunset (around 6) to sundown (around 7) during which I abstain from eating or drinking.

It might sound like one would actually lose weight during that time period but it's the opposite actually, I've gained weight every ramadan, between 5 and 10 lbs, and I'm trying to prioritize atleast NOT gaining this ramadan and I'm not expecting a big weight loss like the last two months. The reason for the weight gain is you're starving when it's time to eat and you end up just over stuffing yourself with all kinds of desired foods, and then you keep eating until it's not time to eat anymore. Of course this completely contradicts the principles behind ramadan and fasting where you're supposed to be exhibiting self-discipline, but I just get weak sometimes, LOL. Another reason for the weight gain is that I'm usually more sedentary during ramadan, I cut out lots of activities, I definately don't work out, and since I'm not working or in school right now I actually end up spending a good bit of the day either sleeping or sitting.

I skipped this week's evaluation so I don't know what the first week of ramadan did to my body in terms of weight loss. To be honest I think I'm doing good in terms of eating when compared with other ramadans. I'm eating small break-fasts (it's what we call dinner in ramadan because we're literally breaking our fast), and I don't eat all throughout. After dinner at somepoint I'll eat again (small dessert or something) and before sunset I'll eat again (some leftovers), I attribute the smaller portions to the suppressants of course; however, most of the food I'm eating is bad food-it's food that I was dreaming about while fasting LOL. I've been eating a good bit of fried food, lots of carbs, and lots of desserts! I try to make sure there's always salad on the dinner table, but even with the salad sometimes I fry pita bread pieces to add because it makes it taste so much better and I keep telling myself it's ok becase I was fasting.

To be honest with you I may have put on some weight, but then again I always feel like I gained weight and every week I lose pounds.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Dropped 6 lbs This Last 2 Weeks- 25 In 2 Months!

Well I had a good day! As previously mentioned I skipped last week’s evaluation because I was just too down to go and I thought I would have put on lbs due to all the junk food-I just couldn’t face that possibility! This week I ate really good although I didn’t go to the gym or anything I still considered it a good week because it was improvement. Also, I’ve proven that I am too hard on myself and I don’t give myself enough credit because when I stepped on the scale today I was an entire SIX POUNDS less than the last evaluation so no matter how ‘bad’ I thought I did last week there definitely was not a gain but a loss (I guess I’ll never know how much). Now that I think about it, I didn’t have that much junk food: a little bit of fries, a little bit of fried shrimp, wedding cake, fried oyster, ice cream and it was all in small quantities but I guess because I still have a negative image I only focused on the fact that I did in fact eat bad food instead of thinking it was only a little.

So fellow ‘dieters’ or ‘healthy wannabes’ or whatever you wish to call yourself if you’re trying to lose weight, take this from me: DON’T UNDERSTIMATE YOUR ABILITY

Monday, September 10, 2007

Don't Be A Britney Spears

With the exception of the Saints major loss to the Colts last Thursday, things have been going good!

The day before yesterday is when I started eating better. I woke up that day feeling really gross, I just felt so bloated and so heavy as a result of junk food and late dinners and I decided I don't want to feel good and thus must put good stuff in my body. When I got hungry I ate a samosa which actualy isn't good because it is fried, but I had only one with my pills. I waited until I was actually hungry before I ate again which was seriously like hours after! I guess that happens as my body's defense mechanism when you feel bloated and full an heavy from days of eating bad food. This is actually my personal logic and not something that I know to be scientifically true LOL. Anyway, when I got hungry I ate a peach and that's all I ate the whole day and I wasn't starving myself or depriving myself, I was actually just listening to my body (some intuitive eating for you there)!

I can't be like Britney Spears, no more excuses, no more blaming external factors for my failures, and no more skipping or rescheduling weekly evaluations instead it's time to TAKE CONTROL! I'm actually looking forward to this wednesday's evaluation although I'm not anticipating a'll be good for me to face the music!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Answer to Farah's question: what exactly am I taking?

farah said...
heycan you tell me the names of the supplements and appetite suppresants you take?i work out every day but i struggle with food. it's also not in my financial possibility to see a nutritionist right now.thank you

amma15 answers

The first appetite suppressant that I took was tenuate which i had for month. The second month they switched me to bontril. Both of those are prescriptions so you must see a doctor to get them, do you have insurance? the medicine itself isn only 40 dollars for a 1 month supply.

As for the supplements, different makers use different names for them but I'm taking:
a)'body boost' which is an enegry pill (stearic acid, cellulose)
b)'B-factor'; a water pill
c) 'sweet ender' craving control pill (niacin bound chromium supplement)
d) 'probese'; this is pretty much a fiber pill (carboxymethulcellulose)
I take them all in the morning with breakfast except for the probese which I'm supposed to take 15 min before meals and if I get hungry or cravings at night then I take one then also.

You should be able to find them all at a local drug store they just might be under different names. I buy the 4 from the center for $80 for a 1 month supply-they might be cheaper at other places. I would say the probese is probably the important and probably the B-factor because I have a lot of water weight.

September 6, 2007 My New Juicy Couture Bag and GO SAINTS!!!

Unfortunately not too much has changed since last week. I skipped my evaluation at the clinic yesterday :( It would be my 7th evaluation. Last week I also skipped on the day it was scheduled but ended up going 2 days later because I felt like I was being too much of a slacker. I don't know if I'll go tomorrow or not, the reason that I'm so avoiding it this week is because I have a strong feeling I put on a pound or 2 or 3. I know I say that every week and every week I end up dropping but this week has been my most unhealthy. I ate bad food probably every single day (I haven't today), I considered this past weekend as a vacation weekend. I mean I went to a 2 day wedding event for god's sake! I'm just really afraid of the possibility that the numbers will go up. I'm taking prescription suppressants along with a few supplements and I'm being evaluated every week by a counselor and a nutritionist so if those numbers on the scale go up I'm going to feel like a failure. Putting together the before and after pics and emailing them out to my relatives gave me a high that I'm still on and I'm afraid that if the numbers went up it'll bring me down and I definately don't need that right now. I'd rather have this week go undocumented and just make up for it the next few days.

I saw a primetime special a couple of days ago on breaking habitual bad habits and the key is to set one mini goal at a time. So today I'm going to not eat after 8 PM!

In a previous post I said that when i reach the 20 pound mark I'm going to buy myself a fendi bag, well those last couple of pounds just came really slow and I couldn't wait so I gave myself an early reward and instead bought a metallic gold suede juicy couture bag! It's super cute-the bag has actually gotten more attention and compliments than my actual weight loss LOL but that doesn't bother me. It sells in store for 275 and I found it on ebay for 250 + shipping which is less than sales tax. I'll post a pic up of the bag!

On a different note, today is the first game of the NFL season which is going to be the New Orleans Saints ("america's team" right?) versus the Indiana Colts which were last year's super bowl winners. I'm a huge Saints fan, I lived in New Orleans last year when they opened the super dome back up after the storm and the saints were a just a source of pride, happiness, and hope to me and so many others. It really seemed like nothing else in New Orleans was working except for the Saints! GOOOOO SSAAAAIIINNNNTTTTSSS!!!!!!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

september 4, 2007 Wedding Weekend and PICS

This past weekend was soooooooo much fun!!! I went to my good friend Rhonda’s henna party on Saturday and wedding on Sunday. It was at the Sheraton on canal street in new Orleans and there were roughly 1,000 guests. I can’t wait to see all the pics-waiting for those facebook tags! Lots of dressing up, dancing, laughing, and memories-I really needed this weekend after such a stressful time in life.

Saturday night we contemplated whether it was worth it to stay in the hotel (99 + taxes and other weird fees, not bad but just not necessary) and after we saw that a lot of our friends from baton rouge didn’t come that night and those that did weren’t staying the night we opted to stay at family friends that live in the uptown area. Although it’s my friends wedding I definitely didn’t know most of the people there-lots of her distant family and family friends and other people that you invite to your wedding if you’re arab that I refer to as “obligations”. One thing I don’t like about arab weddings is that they’re relatively impersonal. It’s not about you as much as it’s about your family, your family name, and the town/village from which you and your spouse originate from-so basically lots of people that you don’t know. One thing that I do love about arab weddings is that they’re FUN!

Sunday night a lot more people came so it was more formal and for me less dancing just because the dance floor was always saturated with lots of people I don’t know who can do all those cultural dabka dances better than me so I did more socializing than trying to squeeze my way in. My friend nada gave the speech where she mentioned my name in front of 1000 people that don’t know me-that put a smile on my face! A lot more friends stayed the night so me and my sister stayed with some friends. The only change of clothes I had with me were my pajamas and after weighing the options I thought I’d rather stay in my dress than wear pajamas out. Everyone made fun of me as we were walking down canal and the French quarter and I would have to stop and hold my expensive dress up as to not let it touch the random piles of ‘liquid stuff’ or just plain garbage LOOOL!

As promised I do have some before and after pics of me in the same dress at my cousins wedding in milwaukee this past may. When I started I weight 191 (my scale) and my last weigh in was 172 so 19 pound difference. I have to admit not everyone noticed the difference but some people definitely noticed. My friends amna and nure said “you look good” but didn’t notice that I lost weight when I asked them-then again I don’t see those 2 that often. My friend nada said my face looked thinner and another friend sameera also made a comment about a thinner face. I personally see the weight loss in my midsection more than anywhere else. Here is the first pic, I may decide to add more later, what do you guys think??????

september 4, 2007 shopping and skinny jeans

Last Friday right after my delayed weigh-in (normal weigh-ins at the clinic are Wednesday), I went to the towne center which is a relatively upscale strip mall next to the clinic where they have a whole foods. Shiela at the clinic told me I really need to make sure that I always have healthy food at hand and made me a list of things to get that included rotisserie chicken, strawberries, almonds, and deli meat.

So I decided to do some shopping! I walked into a boutique called eros and tried on this shirt that was on the mannequin the largest they had was a medium and it was way too tight especially on my stomach. I tried on some skinny and wide leg jeans in the biggest size they have, 32, in Citizens and 7 for all mankind. I couldn’t get them to completely go over my big butt and buttoning and zipping wasn’t even an option-I estimated that my true size was probably around 34 which as far as I know designers don’t make them in that size-I was surprised to even see 32s! Anyway, it might be a blessing that they didn’t have my size considering they were around 200 dollars each. Needless to day I walked out with nothing new.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

september 2, 2007 Before and After Pics COMING SOON

Tonight I'll be going to my friends wedding in new orleans and I'm wearing the same dress I wore to my cousins wedding in milwaukee last May. I've lost 18 pounds the last 6 weeks so I'll be posting some before and after pics of me in that dress!!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

August 30, 2007 I'm Still Going Strong Folks!

Hey everyone-I'm hoping I still have some readers left LOL! I just wanted to say thanks for the emails and comments (the few of them)-I read and respond to them all and totally appreciate the support and I love hearing about everyone else's efforts.

I skipped this week's evaluation which was yesterday because I felt like I was too busy to go-that was probably a mistake! Anyway, last week's evaluation I dropped another 1.5 lbs. I'm not sure what my exact total is now because I realized that apparently the clinic had a completely differen't starting weight then I had for myself so if I go by their number I lost 16.5 but if I go by mine I have like 18.5 down. I think my number is more accurate because when I went to the clinic the first time it was in the afternoon and I didn't eat anything the whole day so that is probably why there's a difference but 2 lbs is not a big deal! I just like saying I lost 18.5 over 16.5 (it's been about a month and a half)!

Towards the end of my first month I noticed the tenuate was losing its effictiveness on me and I brought it up to the physician, he said some people do build an immunity to it and he prescribed me something called Bontril which is suppressing my appetite but I feel kind of edgy at times.

Although my weight loss is definately noticeable and I've been getting comments I can do SO MUCH MORE! I've been lots of junk food, like today I had mcdonalds. This week was the last week for 3 of my friends in town and we have been eating out alot, pretty much on a daily basis! Also, I haven't gone to the gym in like 3 weeks. The other habit I really need to change is that I've been eating late at night-dinner is always around 9PM for me. The reason why I've consistently lost weight every single weekly evaluation is because my portions are small-I just get full on a little bit; however, I know I'd be more successful if I improved my habits-I just find that hard to do when I have like a million things to think about.

This Sunday I'm going to a friend's wedding and I plan on wearing the same dress that I wore to my cousins wedding 3 months ago before I started this program (it's 2 different states!)-if Ifeel good about it I'll post up some pics with me in the dress then and now!!! I'm off now and as always I like to hear from everyone and I really hope my achievement so far has served as some kind of support for you people out there-I'll definately try to more regularly update the blog.

P.S. GOOO SAINTS!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

August 15, 2007 Back From Hiatus-Lost 17 pounds!!

Hi everyone, wow this blog really needs updating. I haven't been posting because my schedule has been really crazy lately and I've been under lots of stress (still am), but I'm going to try to keep up to date with at least the numbers.

Anyway, I'm still going committed to my bodymakeover although I've had some slipups here and there. Today I went for my 5th evaluation and I lost a total of 17 pounds so far, that's 1 month and like 4 days! I hope that serves as some encouragement for you guys out there.

Monday, July 30, 2007

July 29, 2007 I Feel Like #$^*&%*$ *&$(F$$


As I'm writing this it's past 1 AM on a sunday night, tomorrow I must turn in my completed 20-30 page research review paper and I have 6 pages to go. I'm sitting on top of a bed of scientific journal research articles drinking a 12th cup of coffee that I managed to spill all over my white pants and I can feel the intense arrythmia set in. Approximately ten minutes ago I realized my paper is missing some essential tables and figures.

Oh, and did I mention I have jury duty at 9AM???

P.S. I would appreciate all words of support in this time of great need!

Friday, July 27, 2007

July 26, 2007 stress as a food trigger

July 26, 2007
week 3 day 2
From the time I woke up to around midnight I had an awesome day! I actually went to the gym today and did 30 minutes of cardio thanks to my new gym buddy friend Janie who called and said “what are you doing? Wanna go to the gym?” I was like “uuuhhhhh, well, I have a whole 2 hours until I need to be at my interview and it’s not like I’m seriously working on the paper, fine!”

I had breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner-all healthy and all included protein. I really wanted lunch to be my biggest meal so I served myself small portions of a variety of things and got pretty full actually. Dinner was just turkey bacon and almonds. I went to work at my paper at CC’s coffee house and I let myself have half of a mochassippi (only 110 calories). The day was relatively low stress. I took a one and a half hour nap sometime between lunch and dinner.

I realized a general connection between why I have good days and bad days in terms of diet and exercise, stress, and how productive I am and that is that on my good days I don’t have to go to work and on my bad days I have to work, I think my job is really bringing me down. I’ve had lots of jobs before, I worked all throughout college and during most of my summers. I was a telemarketer, I did scientific research in a lab, worked in front of computers, teaching, tutoring, etc. This job is my first retail job and I thought it would be fun plus I get a good discount at a high-end store, but I’ve never come to dread going to work as much as I do this job. Although I only work 4 to 6 hour shifts when I go to work I feel like I was at work all day long because getting ready to go to work is a process, full makeup and accessories, trendy outfit, and since I spend my entire shift on my feet in high heels and sometimes it literally feels like I’m jogging when I get home I’m tired, really tired, too tired to do something productive like start studying for my optometry exam (called OAT).

The pay is commission based but lately I’ve been making only close to the base pay because I lost a lot of the enthusiasm and drive that I had when I started, I don’t really care for going out of my way to find things for people or push people to take advantage of our latest promotions like the $98 sexy trench coat or the $69 hobo satin bag (it’s ugly). I really feel unappreciated especially by this one manager who seems to be the one I have to work with the most. She’s a control freak and I don’t jive well with personalities like that, I feel like control freaks have insecurity issues so they try to control people around them to compensate. She points out my weaknesses in sales and she’ll repeat things to me slowly like I’m stupid or something. Also, the dumbest things will bother her. I consider quitting all the time but I don’t have another job lined up and I do need some sort of income no matter how small so I can at least make my credit card payments (my parents help out but I can’t always depend on them to).

At the beginning I said to around midnight I had an awesome day, so what happened after midnight? Well, stress set in! I was doing research for my paper and realized that I only have a couple of days to get it done and I just started getting all panicky. I’m remembering now that Shiela the nutritionist that stress is a food trigger for me. Anyway, I stared out just letting myself have a piece of cheese, then I though it was too dry and let myself half a piece of whole wheat bread. Then I put a little bit of rice and soup in the microwave. When I finished that I thought, what the hell the damage is already done so I let myself have more rice and soup, and all after midnight. This definitely wasn’t a binge or anything but its really too late to be eating, not to mention all that white rice I had It’s around 1 AM and I’m actually feeling sick, I can’t even think of any motivational or uplifting statements to tell myself at the moment as to why I’m not going to do this again.

My final number for the day are 931 calories, 27 grams of fat, and 107 grams of carbs (the rice and the mochassippi was over half of that)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

July 25, 2007 11 pounds in 2 weeks!

Week 3 Day 1
I went for my second evaluation today, and I lost 2 pounds this week, which brings my total loss to 11 pounds in 2 weeks, not bad! 2 pounds was under my goal this week of 4 pounds, but I had a feeling it was going to be like that considering how many times I ate late and all of those dinner parties. Also, this morning I woke up bloated so I’m definitely retaining water weight, probably from all of the carbs I had yesterday.

Shiela, the nutritionist/counselor that saw me today , said I was doing great and since I recognize where my mistakes were to do better this week, and I’m determined to do so!

I’m under a great amount of stress from worrying that I’m not going to be able to finish my research paper because of time constraints. Today I even cried on the way to work because I felt like I don’t have time to be going to work but I can’t just not show up for work, so I went to work and just cried on the way. I hate work lately, I feel like it gets in the way of other more important things in my life (such as the research paper, and working on applications for optometry schools) and I’m not getting too much out of work other than a skimpy paycheck and the 40% discount which I don’t take advantage of too much since I can’t fit in a lot of the clothes we sell. I convinced myself to keep the job so that when I get interviews to the schools I can use my discount to buy the cute and trendy overpriced suits we sell.

I’ve been going to a lot of job interviews lately at different optical places and so far nothing’s positive has come out of that, it’s all very poor pay and less than desirable environments. I’m 23 I have experience and just about have a masters degree, I want a job where my opinion and personal judgment actually matter, in other words I want a job where I have some autonomy and not a place where I get reprimanded for not using the proper greeting when answering the phone. Tomorrow I have an interview to work in an actual optical lab (making glasses and whatever), so I’m expecting the pay to be better and I hope it goes well. If not, I’m going to have to look into some research and teaching positions because at least it’s more my type of environment and not to mention the pay is going to be way better.

In terms of my diet, today was a positive day! I had some shrimp spring rolls from whole foods for lunch, and for dinner I had chicken salad and some soup (early this time!). One bad thing I did is took a couple of bites of chicken that my cooked at night when I got back from work, but it was still a small amount. My total today amounts to 630 calories, 23.5 grams of fat, and 18.5 grams of carbs!

July 24, 2007 Lindsay Lohan ruined my morning

Week 2 Day 6
It’s the day before my second evaluation and I’m feeling a bit nervous! I’m afraid that I’m going to be disappointed, I don’t feel like I had a great week like I felt last week. I went to bed at 3 AM and woke up at 6 AM working on that damn research paper and feel like I didn’t get very much done! In the morning I was so tired that I got easily distracted from research and found myself following the Lindsay lohan drama on perez hilton’s site, damn her. Today, I met with a friend, had a job interview, and then went to work. Since I had a hectic day lunch ended up just being a handful of almonds (but it’s better than skipping lunch!) and thus I ended up having a heavier dinner.

Also, I’m really noticing the comeback of urges and cravings that were absent the first week. When I finished the dinner plate I portioned out for myself I wanted more food and let myself have another serving of toubilah salad which is healthy but does have olive oil and thus added a good bit of cals and fat. This could be due to the stress I’m under like I mentioned in the last post, it could also possibly be due to me having a snack in place of lunch. I should really try to avoid setting myself up for failures and making sure that I do have a protein breakfast and that I eat a real lunch. If I still find it tough to urge the cravings I’m going to bring it up to Cecilia, maybe I need a different prescription or supplement.

The good news is that today I only had 910 calories (34 fat, 81 grams of carbs-I had a hot tamale and ground wheat), the bad news is about ¾ of it was from dinner. Wish me luck tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

July 23, 2007 Stressed Out

Week 2 Day 6
July 23, 2007

I slept early last night and didn’t get to publish my post, so I’m doing it this morning. If I started classifying my days as negative or positive, yesterday would be a negative. I skipped breakfast (always a bad start), but had a good lunch (salad with turkey). I got home kind of late, around 7:30 and was starving so it was hard to resist whatever my mom cooked since I didn’t make anything beforehand. I ended up eating a little too much rice with beef and peas. Later on my mom left part of her Cadbury fruit and nut chocolate bar on the table so I decided it’s ok to have some with my coffee. I portioned myself half of a serving of the chocolate which is relatively harmless (100 cals, 5 g of fat, and 12 grams of carbs), but I ate swallowed it down fast and wanted more. I’m worried that I felt that way, the absence of the desire to want more has been a lot of why I’m been so successful on this program so far and feeling that way reminded me of my failed diet days. Anyway, I thought what the hell I had a long day and let myself half another half serving of chocolate-and then about half an hour later I served myself more rice and beef although I did have a fiber pill before dinner. Oh, and did I mention it was around 10PM!!!

I went to bed early and this morning I woke up not feeling so great and being bloated. I believe I can pinpoint why I had rather low will power and self-control yesterday, I’m in a great amount of stress right now. I have less than a week to turn in a 30 page research paper (I have a little more than half completed) in order to complete my masters and I just can’t seem to find ample time to put aside to just sit and focus on completing the paper. On most days I can’t wake up early enough to work on it in the morning and by the time I get home from working or doctor shadowing (I do one or the other and sometimes both everyday) I’m just too tired and out of energy.

Another issue that’s causing me stress right now is the job search. This is my first year and only year in a while that I’ll be available to work full time and since I just about have a masters I believe I should get a good job, I mean at least something better than 8.50 which is what all these optometry offices are offering me. There’s not that much opportunity in my field here in baton rouge but the best one is to get a teaching position at the local community college. The first part of their application is sending them my academic transcripts, and right now mine is on hold because of some loan issues, so I spent around 2 hours on the phone yesterday making various phone calls and being placed on hold and in the end I got NOTHING resolved!

Thankfully this morning I woke up early so I’m going to try to make the most of the few hours that I have before I need to go to a job interview. Oh, and my total for 7/23 was about 900 calories, 40 grams of fat, and 86 grams of carbs 75% of which was consumed after 7:30 PM. Hopefully today will be different!

ALSO.....Tomorrow is my second evaluation I'm kind of nervous because I'm not sure if it'll be good. I don't think I lost the four pounds that I aimed to but wish me luck!

Monday, July 23, 2007

July 22, 2007 Will I reach my weekly goal?

July 22, 2007

My mom hosted a potluck dinner party today so I spent the early part running around town doing errands. I had a quick slice of organic deli chicken for breakfast and the same for lunch. At the mall I picked up a low fat mochassippi (the local version of frappuccino but healthier) and drank half of it. We ended up not having dinner until like 9:30 PM and I was the last to serve myself so there wasn’t very much left. I had a few bites of fried pita bread, a couple of grape leaves, and some hummous and baba ghanouj. Someone bought a fruit tart from whole foods which is probably like my favorite desert ever, I cut myself a small piece, but then I served myself another. I would have been better to not have eaten this late but whatever I can’t dwell on it now.

Unfortunately the calorie king website is down so I’m not sure how many calories I had but my estimate is around the 800 range. My evaluation is on Wednesday and although I’m confident I lost some weight I don’t think I’ll be as successful as I could have been with all these dinner and lunch parties I went to this week, not to mention I have yet to go to the gym this week. My goal was to have dropped 4 pounds which is very reasonable considering it’s early in my weight loss. I have two whole days until Wednesday and I should be able to get another pound in-I just need to get focused!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

July 21, 2007 Setback at Dinner Party and JEANS

July 21, 2007
DAMN! Today I ate pretty bad, definitely the worst day since starting the program. My mom cooked couscous (wheat) which is like my favorite food, so I had it for breakfast and I guess my first big mistake is having all those carbs for breakfast. Then I went to shadow an optometrist for three hours and right after I had to rush to work for a four hour shift, my schedule was too hectic for me to think about eating something although I did have almonds and string cheese in my bag, so that was the second mistake I made. When I get off my shift not only was I tired, exhausted, and in a pretty bad mood like I usually am when I get off of work but I was also hungry and I didn’t have my fiber pills with me to try to control that. Guess where I was going after work? A dinner party!!!!!

When I got there the ONLY healthy thing being served was salad and shrimp and it had lemon juice in it which I don’t really care for. I still ate the salad, I had small portions of everything but it was all unhealthy food and it added up to lots of cals, fat, and especially carbs! I put a good serving of salad and shrimp and a little bit of fettuccini alfredo, small piece of friend fish, one egg roll, a little bit of rice, and half of a texas toast (this was basically what I did at the last lunch party I went to but the difference there was that there was more healthy than non healthy options). My friend made a comment that I was putting too little food on my plate, my reply was that I want to try everything first in case I didn’t like it (I don’t like telling people I’m on a diet plus I find that people get annoyed anyway). I didn’t finish my plate, so in terms of the amount I ate considering I was at a dinner party I did good but still all that junk stuff added up and at the end of the day after estimating how much of everything I ate I had 1400 calories, 35 grams of fat, and 130 grams of carbs!!! Definitely the most since starting the program and the first time I went over the recommended 1200 calories. So I would say the third mistake is that not bringing my fiber pills, the fourth mistake is that I should have realized I could have done without a couple of those options such as the piece of fried fish, I don’t even like fried fish! Also I could have done without the half a texas toast, it was one of those frozen food things and just not as appetizing as the other stuff, the exclusion of those 2 would have brought me under 1200. I recognized 4 mistakes about today and hopefully I’ll remember to not repeat them. Oh, and I did skip desert, and absolutely everyone there ate desert so I’m proud of myself!

I do have good news! Guess what I wore to work today? JEANS!!! I got self-conscious this morning getting dressed and I thought I don’t want my coworkers to know that I wear the same 2 dress pants every time so I decided to try my jeans which a week and a half ago I had to lie down just to pull the jeans up most of my butt, zipping and buttoning wasn’t even an option I just made sure I was wearing a long shirt. Today they fi,t zipped, and buttoned. They were tight but this is still a huge accomplishment in a week and a half., I just can’t believe how fast I’m getting smaller, that was just a week and a half ago!!!

I just remembered, at the dinner party a friend commented that I looked like I lost “a lot of weight.” I was happy to hear that although my mom says she doesn’t notice a difference but she’s a pessimist anyway.

Friday, July 20, 2007

July 20, 2007 I Got the Blues

Week 2 Day 2
I really need to work on bringing up my energy level, I don’t like to do too many things in one day although I always have so much on my list of things to do. I woke up at 5AM in an attempt to finish my research paper, of course I didn’t finish it by the time I got ready to go shadow my doctor but I still emailed what I have to my advisor and promised it’d be finished by the end of the month (crunch time!). I got back from the doctor’s at around 1:30 and I was just BEAT. All I wanted to do was watch TV and/or read a book. I don’t feel like going to the gym, or making a needed errand trip to the bank, or following up on my job applications, or working on my paper, or try to do something about the mountain of clothes on my bed. It’s like I can’t do more than 2 or 3 significant things in the day although I have so many commitments. It’s now 7 and since I got home I barely got off of the couch. I swear if it wasn’t for the fact that I’m losing weight and eating healthy I’d be depressed right now. I’m not sure if it’s even about energy or why I get like this.

Cecille at body image suggested I should really try to get 4 workouts in the week. Last week I only worked out twice and they were pretty moderate workouts, I haven’t gone to the gym yet this week and I know I won’t be able to go tomorrow or Sunday because my schedule is packed on both days and if I can spare time it should be for finishing my paper which is causing me a great deal of stress and panic.

Just like yesterday, today for lunch I had chicken salad and ravioli but about a third of the portions of yesterday, literally it was a couple of raviolis (big ones) and like 5 bites of chicken salad- and I added a peach. I was soooooo full but my lunch was still about 400 calories. I’ve already had six cups of coffee and I feel my heart beating a bit fast and my hands are shaky, so that will be the last of the coffee for the day.

I didn’t have much of a dinner, just some deli chicken slices and my total today is 678 calories, 19 grams of fat, and 28 grams of carbs!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

July 19, 2007 My New Adidas!

Week 2 Day 1

About a week ago, right before I started the program I bought these adidas pants on clearance at lady foot locker that I thought looked cute, I got them in a medium because that was the largest size they had and they were really cheap. When I went home I just couldn’t get the pants past my thighs. Today, I wore those pants out!!!! I have to admit they were tight and I wore a longer sweatshirt to hide my butt but STILL, they fit! I haven’t actually put on any jeans yet. I almost stopped wearing jeans because I find them so uncomfortable and I just refused to buy them in my size with the hopes that I’ll be losing weight. The two jeans that I own and until recently worn are both size 12 and they’re just extremely tight and one of them I can’t get to button, I don’ t know even know what my size is. The past few months I’ve basically been wearing sweatpants, dress pants, and skirts so it’s comforting to know I’m dropping in size!

Today my academic advisor emailed me over a final review paper that I was supposed to turn in months ago to complete my masters degree. It was literally a two-line email and said something like “I’m assuming you’re just about done with your paper”. I sensed his underlying tone of being annoyed which put me in panic mode. I plan on staying up as late as possible to finish that paper even if it’s all night, although I hope I won’t have to do that I’m supposed to be doing some doctor shadowing at 9AM. So that’s another thing I really need to work on in life, time management, focus, and panic control. Hopefully that self-discipline that I’m picking up with this program will help with other aspects of life.

As for my diet today, I had both chicken salad and leftover ravioli for lunch which resulted in a rather high calorie day when compared to my other days on the program, but that’s good, I’m happy; I felt like I was eating too little the other days anyway and was worried about getting my body used to that. At the end of the day I had 1073 calories, 65 grams of fat, and 62.5 grams of carbs.

Update: I got hungry at around 10:30 and I was also really stressed out trying to finish my paper, so I didn't resist and let myself have two slices of low fat deli meat, it's only 50 cals so I'm not worried.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

July 18, 2007 I LOST 9 LBS IN 1 WEEK

Week 1 Day 7

I went down to Body Image this morning for my first evaluation appointment (I have to admit, I did skip breakfast that day), I met a new nice lady who weighed me in, there was a couple of seconds there where she was making sure she was reading the scale right and kept looking at my chart and then announced “Yup, 9 pounds!” From 190 to 181 in 7 days!! Everyone in the office was really proud of me and the physician said that I had an “exceptional week”
9 Pounds in a week is just unbelievable, I mean literally if someone told me they lost 9 pounds in a week I wouldn’t believe them especially as a diet veteran, I never experienced results like this. The closest thing to fast results was on the south beach diet when I lost 7 pounds in the first two weeks. I even had Mcdonald’s fries, ate at PF changs, and went to a lunch party during the week! I called my mom on the way home and told her and her response was “liar....”. I texted my two friends that I chose to tell about the diet my results and she responded back “that’s great but don’t you feel really hungry,” LOOOL, it cracked me up that she’s under the impression that I’m starving myself.
Cecille, the program founder and nutritionist reviewed my diary and suggested I make small but more healthy choices such as replacing my coffee mate (which I thought was totally healthy since it barely has cals and carbs) with soy creamer and try to eat less beef and more turkey and chicken. She also gave me a meal plan and some recipes and I decided to actually cook a real meal today. I got my ingredients from whole foods for the raviolo recipe in my little packet and I’m not kidding that was probably the best ravioli I had in my life!

At the end of today I consumed 859 calories, 43.5 g of fat, and 56.5 grams of carbs the overwhelming majority of that being from my amazing ravioli lunch!

July 17, 2007 Discrimination SUCKS

Week 1 Day 6
Tomorrow at 11AM is going to be my official first weigh-in and assessment since starting the program. I didn’t weigh myself this morning but I want to make sure tomorrow goes good so I’m going to lay off the carbs and the sodium today and I’ll make sure to get a cardio workout in this evening or in the morning. I want to be their star client!!! That’s my overachiever attitude coming in so it’s probably a good thing that I chose a program where you have to answer to a whole bunch of people, I hate to disappoint!

I need to institute a rewards program. When I reach the 20 lb mark I’m going to get myself something I’ve been wanting for a year now, a Fendi bag!!! I don’t have that many purses and the few that I have are designer, I’d rather buy few more expensive purses that I absolutely love than have a whole bunch of cheap purses that match my outfits. I’ll get it off ebay so that it’s only half of the price and plus I’m already saving so much money by cutting out all of the drive-thrus and the lattes, smoothies, and frozen drinks that are all part of my normal daily routine. The only thing edible I’ve purchased since starting the progam (other than lunch at PF changes) is cheap coffee like once a day, I once bought a small salad and I may have paid for a water bottle or two which is a huge comedown from the regular 10-20 dollars that I usually spend a day on food and drinks. So that Fendi purse won’t be a big setback for me.

I had a bad day which sucks because it’s one of the few days that I don’t have to work or shadow doctors and some bitch ruined it!!! I’ve been applying around to work at many optical centers to get experience in the field since I plan on attending optometry school next year. I got offered a job but I’m not happy with the pay so I’m still looking. There’s this one brand new eye clinic that just opened up in a ritzy shopping center that I would love to work in. I called today to ask if they received my resume and cover letter that I faxed last week and the girl that answered couldn’t seem to find it. I asked her if they’re still hiring and her response was “yes, we’re always hiring!” I decided I was going to take my stuff there in person to the manager so that I know they’re received. I walked in and asked for the manager and as soon as she saw she kind of tilted her head back like I startled her. I introduced myself and handed her my papers and gave her a little introduction she just kept nodding her head, then I said “you guys are hiring right?” and her response was that they weren’t but maybe in a few months!!!!! She discriminated against me because I’m Muslim and I wear a headscarf, that’s the only explanation for what happened. I’m pretty good at speaking out and confronting people but I thought she might just read my resume and get impressed and know she’s wrong and give me a call back-I didn’t want to say anything and ruin my chances but that totally ruined my day!!!!!!
I don’t feel bad that she judged me because I don’t need her to think highly of me-she’s probably around 45 and the highlight of her life is managing an optometrist’s office and I know I have a bright future ahead of me so it’s not about her she’s insignificant but I feel bad because people’s prejudices and discrimination get in the way of what I’m trying to pursue. I’m trying to use all that anger energy and channel it into motivation energy to make this bodymakeover thing work once and for all!!!! Afterwards I went to the mall with the intention of returning a 20 dollar shirt and ending up buying $165 worth of stuff paid for in cash which meant I had to put off making payments on my store credit cards, I really need to work on my spending.

I skipped breakfast, and had a small frozen yogurt for dinner at 9:30 (way after the time I should stop eating). All in all I consumed 540 calories, 17 grams of fat, and 45 grams of carbs. To be honest right now I’m actually hungry for a change but I’m excited about my weigh-in tomorrow!

July 16, 2007 Lunch party success!!!

Week 1 Day 5
Weight: 183.5
Lost: 7.5
I broke my rule about not weighing myself every morning. I couldn’t resist the scale I just had to know if the lunch at PF Changs caused any harm and to my surprise I dropped another pound which means I lost 7 pounds in 4 days!!!!!

I did great at the lunch party that I was so nervous about! I made sure to take the fiber pill before eating and had two glasses of water and my friend definitely hosted a banquet!! She laid out salmon filet, pot roast, two different kinds of rice, gourmet salad, and some fancy pizza-looking thing. I decided that whatever I put on my plate was what I was going to eat and no more. I put a normal serving of the healthy stuff: salmon and the salad (with olive oil) and then I just put a little bit, I mean literally like a couple of bites of everything else so that I was more than satisfied. If I could learn to just eat like that every time I ate at a party or dinner that would be a major accomplishment! After a couple of hours I had some strawberry and kiwi. So in total the meal was around 650 calories and 38 grams of fat (olive oil and pot roast). I had to work a closing shift so I just skipped dinner; what was really weird is that I didn’t even feel hungry until I got home at 11PM so I just popped a fiber pill and drank water. At the end of the day I only ate around 800 calories and I went to a lunch party!!!

July 15, 2007 Lunch at P.F. Chang's

Week 1 Day 4
Weight: 184.5
Lost: 6
WOW, 6 pounds after 3 days!!! This morning I woke up feeling bloated which is probably the water replacing the lost fat. One of the side effects that the doctor warned me about is insomnia, and it’s actually been quite the opposite for me. Eating less and healthier food has been making me fall asleep faster so I’m already experiencing some of the benefits of being healthy!! However, a side effect that I am experiencing from the medicine is constipation, mot major constipation, but I just don’t go to the bathroom as easy as I normally do which I can probably overcome by eating spinach salad everyday. I plan on going grocery shopping once the clinic gives me the customized meal plan I’m supposed to get this Wednesday when I go for the official weigh-in and assessment. Right now I’ve just been making due with whatever low cal things and lean protein my family carries in the fridge (which is why I’ve been eating mainly protein). Speaking of which, I decided that after today I’m not going to weigh myself every morning. I know that there’s probably going to be good days and some bad days and I don’t want to become so obsessed with the numbers. The only weighing that’ll be done will be the weekly one at the center and I’ll let you guys know of the results.

Last night I left work early because we were slow and on the way home I got depressed. Maybe because it was Saturday evening and I had no plans but I also didn’t feel like calling anyone to see what’s going on. Being fat has resulted in me not wanting to go out and see people as much. At that moment I would normally be pulling in the drive-thru of mcdonalds but I just knew I couldn’t sabotage myself and plus I really didn’t feel like eating that much it was moreso about following a familiar pattern because it gave me comfort. So I compromised and went to a frozen yogurt place that serves the best fresh and sour frozen yogurt I ever had in my life, the small size only has 150 calories and it brought a smile to my face. I could have one of those everyday and still be healthy and lose weight as long as I’m not eating too many other carbs since it does have around 20g of carbs, but that’s also 75 dollars a month and I really need to control my spending.

Today I experienced the biggest challenge since starting the program: I had lunch at P.F. Changs with a friend who doesn’t know about my program. I didn’t have a big appetite or cravings, but I just know how good the food tastes. After studying the calorie counter handbook for like 30 minutes I decided on the healthier kung pao chicken (they have a healthier one that’s cooked with chicken stock and not oil they just don’t list it on the main menu). We ordered vegetarian lettuce wraps which are relatively low in calories. I portioned out half of the kung pao chicken, had a few spoons of brown rice and a couple of bites of my friends more unhealthy entrée. What I ate for lunch is probably equal to what I ate each entire day the past three days but it’s definitely less than what I would usually have eaten out. Using their nutrition guide I estimated that entire meal to be around 785 calories, 29.5 grams of fat, and 72 grams ofcarbs but I still feel like I did good because on a regular day I would have ordered a more unhealthy appetizer and entrée, probably eaten the entire if not most of the entrée, and split a desert. I brought the leftovers home but I think God’s watching over me today because my mom ate them so I had no choice but to have a small healthy dinner (just a turkey bacon, that’s all I felt like eating). I didn’t have much of a breakfast or dinner so my grand total today is 885 calories, 32.5, and 74 grams of carbs. I do realize that because of the high amount of sodium and carbs I had there will probably be a small setback in the weight loss. I’ll make sure I get more of an intense workout tomorrow morning, I also took an extra water pill!

Tomorrow a friend of mine is having a big lunch at her house and I’m getting a little anxious thinking about it. In my past experience with dieting it’s always those large social gatherings with food that cause me to sabotage myself. I’ve always found it really hard to just ‘make healthier choices’ and portion control because I’m such an all or nothing person. If I couldn’t stick to just the salad and grilled chicken than I might as well just eat everything + seconds and worry about it tomorrow. This is why I feel like I did good with lunch at P.F. changs, just because I didn’t order the steamed vegetables it doesn’t mean that I might as well get desert and that’s IMPROVEMENT!!! I think the fact that I was only with one other person helped, there’s just something about the big gatherings that make we wanna have a feast and I don’t know of those pills are gonna change that, I’ll let you know tomorrow!

July 14, 2007-Binge Eating

Week 1 Day 3
Weight: 186.5
Lost: 4.5
This morning I weighed in at 186.5 which gives me a total loss of 4.5 pounds in two days! It’s most likely water and other substances and not so much fat but hey, that’s lost mass and that still makes me happy! I was supposed to shadow my local optometrist at 9 AM this morning and I woke up late so I was rushing out and didn’t have much of a breakfast, but I also had no appetite. This meant that taking all of my pills was delayed until lunch when I got back. I made myself an egg white omelet and had half a hamburger patty that all equaled around 400 calories that I took with a water pill, the prescription, the energy pill, and the craving control pill. I’m happy that I feel like I can eat again and I’m going to try to make it a priority not to eat under 1000 calories today.

Although I’ve only don’t the program for two full days my attitude about food is completely different. My problems with weight were always due to my struggle with food. I’m relatively an active person, I’m not a workout freak but I go to the gym a couple times a week and I’ve had a gym membership since high school. There were lots of times when I wasn’t consistent about going regularly but still I workout more than the average person and if I was putting on pounds it was because of the food. I’m an emotional eater as well as a binge eater; food was always the easy escape out of problems and I can safely say that my life is full of stress. I take on too many tasks at once (this is something else I’m hoping will change with a positive self-image). There are many days when food is really my biggest enjoyment of the day. I can’t remember when it was that I started binging at night but it was just the perfect escape from the problem or task at hand. Afterwards it was the worst feeling ever and I would keep telling myself that tomorrow I’m going to change or whatever but when I come home to my lonely apartment after a bad day the urge was just something I couldn’t control, it was like an addiction and I took comfort in knowing that there’s always tomorrow. This past year when I was doing my masters it was the worst. My program was relatively intense I was taking around 5 graduate classes each semester, I was tutoring Arabic, and I was also working part-time. There were many days when I’d leave early around 7 AM and not get home until 11 PM with a long list of things I needed to do, quizzes to study for, assignments to complete-and I just took comfort in food and the binging became more regular. During the year I went on a couple of diets in an attempt to change but they didn’t last and in the 9 months that I was in school this past year I gained around 35 pounds! I was at an all all-time low in morale, I felt ugly and when I was not at work I was pretty much always wearing the same couple of pairs sweatpants and always had a sweatshirt tied around my waist to cover my huge ass (I still do that actually). I lost the desire for girly things such as shopping, manicures and pedicures, accessories, makeup-I just didn’t care! I also started dreading going to big social functions that are so prominent in the arab community like parties and weddings. I’m usually big on fashion and being trendy and have a positive image in the community and I just didn’t want people to see me looking like this. My mom started telling people that my weight gain was due to a medication I was taking and was only temporary. Because of my low morale I really missed out on a lot this year, it was like part of me stopped living.

The past couple of days on the pill there were definately times that I was feeling that eating is something I have to do and not something I like to do. I just have no appetite and get no cravings, it’s really weird! At dinner after I realized that I still consumed under 900 calories that day I made myself eat a peach and string cheese to bring my total calories to 980 so that I don’t feel like I’m losing weight unhealthily or that I’m slowing down my metabolism. My mom thinks it’s just wonderful, she told me to tell the doctor at my next appointment that I’m taking the whole pill instead of half like I am now so that he can prescribe me more to give her some. By bringing down the appetite and cravings the pill is just making it easier when it comes to control and discipline.

I’ve picked up a really awesome habit which is I replaced my entire liquid intake with water (except of course for coffee). In three days I haven’t had any diet sodas, carbonated drinks, any sugar free drinks that are filled with artificial flavorings and sweeteners, it’s just water! It’s also really the only way of ensuring that I get that 6-8 glasses a day.

So it’s the end of the third day and I have recorded in my diary 980 calories, 44 grams of fat (lots of protein), and 47 grams of carbs (half of it from the frozen yogurt I had). I’m optimistic about the future and I’ve already starting flipping through the pages of the fashion magazines I subscribe to that lately just pile up on my desk! As always, I love to hear from you!

July 13, 2007 Start With Me

Week 1 Day 2
Weight: 189
Lost: 2
I posted the blog last night and this morning I’m happy to see that the page has been visited 26 times! I’ve decided to try to stay anonymous with this blog and signing up with the clinic, only 2 of my friends and my mom know that I’m doing this. I can’t really explain the reason but right now I just don’t feel comfortable telling people that I’m doing this. I think that a lot of my friends that never had more than 15 pounds to lose just won’t understand my struggle and I guess I fear being judged. I don’t know if people will be supportive, so by letting them know of my struggle before results I feel almost like I’m giving them a power over me. Maybe this thinking is all part of my negative self image, any thoughts?

If you’re reading this blog and need to lose weight but haven’t started a plan yet PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE START NOW! I’m still at the beginning of my journey (day 2) so just think of it that we’re doing this together and I’m sure that reading about my progress everyday will be a constant source of motivation and encouragement. I’m not endorsing one particular plan over the other, how you decide to do it is up to you and I’m no expert, all I’m endorsing is a commitment to lose weight and be healthy. If you’re interested in the medical weight loss that I’m doing I’m sure there’s a medical weight loss clinic in your area just google it or look in the yellow pages, if you have any questions/concerns contact me. You should even start a blog yourself and send me the address; I’d love to read it!

I weighed myself this morning after using the bathroom and I was down 2 lbs from yesterday morning! I realize that this early in the game it’s most likely just water weight but that still makes me happy because after all water is mass. The plan that the nutritionist/counselor put me on includes not eating after 7PM which I personally find very difficult to do since I usually sleep well after midnight. I couldn’t do that last night, by the time I finished having dinner it was 8PM, but I’m not worried about it because by the time I went to bed around 1 AM I was hungry. The physician told me that if I get hungry at night when I’m not supposed to be eating to take a fiber pill which will expand in my stomach and hold me over, but I didn’t want to waste a pill when I was about to go to bed-that bottle wasn’t cheap. I woke up around 6 AM (I’m an early riser) and I felt really bloated. I know that when you’re losing weight your body temporarily replaces the fat with water so I hope that’s the reason why I’m bloated.

Today was…..WEIRD! I ate normal breakfast but by the time lunch came I had an upset stomach and just didn’t want to eat anything, I forced myself to eat a string cheese before work and that served as my lunch. I don’t know if the upset stomach is related to the pills, there’s no way to tell. I had a small dinner; I just didn’t feel like eating. At the end of the day I consumed around 620 calories, 27 grams of fat, and 11 grams of carbs most of which came from breakfast. Just two days ago I was eating a few thousand calories a day (literally speaking I was a binge-eater)!!! However, I’m not happy with myself that I consumed so little, 600 calories is just not healthy and to be honest I’m feeling weak and sick-like and this is not the way that I want to lose weight. Besides that, the last thing I want to do is slow down my metabolism. From now on I’m really going to try to not eat under 1000 calories a day.
I’m off to bed fellow blogreaders!

July 12, 2007 First Day

Week 1 Day 1
Weight: 191
Today is the first official day on the personal journey that’ll probably be one of the most important one of my life, making over my body-FOR LIFE! I’m a 23 yr old female and as of yesterday I was 5”1 and weighed 190 pounds, the most I’ve ever been. Just typing that number down gave me the chills!!

Here’s my introductory tell you about myself blab la bla paragraph: I have has just completed a masters degree (almost completed, still have a final paper to turn in), I currently reside in my home town of Baton Rouge, LA, I’m arab, and I work part-time in a popular and over-priced retail store that doesn’t even carry my size. I’ve always wanted to go to medical school but after finishing my masters in genetics I decided MD isn’t for me and I’m hoping to be in optometry school in the fall of ’08. I spend a lot of my days applying for jobs (hoping to work at an eye clinic), researching for my masters paper, and working. Throughout the blog I’ll be talking more about my life and past but right now there’s too much to say.

So back to the body makeover! I’ve had issues with weight for as long as I can remember although I wasn’t always a fat girl, I’m sure a lot of you reading this blog can relate to that! In high school I felt like the fattest girl although I fluctuated between size 4 and 6. My weight in college was constantly up and down, during my sophomore year I went on the south beach diet with my roommate and lost around 25 pounds that got me down to a size 6, but after a tough graduate school year I can now barely fit in size 14! I’ve been on just about every diet that has a name, and I KNOW that many of you reading this can relate to that one! I usually don’t lose more than a few pounds with the exception of the south beach. The last diet I was on was the Nurtisystem, before that I’ve tried slimfast, weightwatchers, the master cleanse, grapefruit diet, scarsdale, abs diet, etc. I’ve realized the problem isn’t with the diets as much as it is with me, I mean if you stick to any of those you’re going to lose weight and learn healthy habits but I had low willpower and low confidence in my ability to succeed, like one of my friends once told me “you always sabotage yourself”. I recently went on vacation to attend my cousins wedding and I don’t think there was a family member that didn’t comment on my weight. My parents are not happy with my size, my dad gives me almost daily lectures about my health (I also have a congenital heart disorder) and my mom is just the worst, I think she thinks that if she calls me enough names I’ll get motivated to lose weight. My mom is one of those moms that’s pretty big on image, she loves to tell people about all of my academic achievements and standardized test scores but at the same time I feel that she gets embarrassed by me, I’m definitely one of the “bigger” girls in the arab-muslim community. At weddings and parties I’ve noticed that she’ll point out my size double zero sister to people she just met.

My best friend convinced to sign up with this medical weight loss center called Body Image Solutions here in Baton Rouge, that happens to be the same place she goes for laser hair removal; she’s probably one of the only people that know how much of a low I’ve reached and she just wants to see me happy. What attracted me to give that a try is the whole group support thing and the fact that you have to go in every week to meet with a counselor and once a month to meet with a physician. I went over to the clinic yesterday and attended the nutrition class which was pretty much information I already know from all the diet books I read (but it's good to hear it again), I met with a physician who prescribed an appetite suppressant, and they convinced me to purchase a few supplements that you can probably get over the counter that include a water pill, a fiber pill, energy pill, and a craving control pill. I take 4 of those daily and one of them as needed. Basically, I’m supposed to eat 1200 calories a day (300 breakfast, 400 lunch, 300 dinner, and 2-100 cal snacks) and cut out simple carbohydrates. They gave me a customized meal plan as well as a food diary that I am to be recording everything in. They also told me I really need to lose 85 pounds. I thought I was going to be paying 100 dollars a month for my 3 month membership but at the end of the day I ended up charging almost 450 dollars. Afterwards I called my friend and she told me to trust her it's going to be worth it! My mom covered most of the cost but very sternly told me that if I didn’t lose weight I owe her the money. I’ll probably be spending another 50-100 dollars a month on the supplements if I decide I want them.

So as I mentioned, today was the first official day although it really should have been yesterday except I had mcdonald’s for lunch. I took my pills in the morning and the fiber pills before meals and I have recorded in my food diary that I ate a total of 920 calories, 29 grams of fat, and 26 grams of carbohydrates and surprisingly it was easy to do. Not only did I serve myself healthy food but I just got full on small portions! My biggest struggle was probably in between the meals/snacks I got hungry but once I sat down and ate I only wanted a little bit. I went to the mall food court with a coworker and convinced her to split a salad with me, I just wanted to eat something small. I’m hesitant to say this on the first day but that stuff is working!
The reason why I decided to start a blog is that I’m hoping to create a network of cyber support especially for young females who need a body makeover. I always felt that reading others blogs/stories gave me some motivation but a lot of times I felt that I couldn’t quite relate with the middle-aged mother of 3, although if you fall in that category and you’re reading my blog I still do feel your struggle and wish you success. I don’t care what ‘diet’ you’re doing or plan you’re following but we all have a greater thing in common and I hope that reading about my experience gives you support and motivation like writing it gives me support and motivation to reach the greater goal. If you have any questions/comments I would LOVE to hear from you!