Adding Another Component

So yeah, in February of last year, after a particularly vicious break-up, I had an epiphany about my life, about my mostly self-imposed isolation, and I vowed to get out there and live. This included re-launching myself back into the dating world via POF, and signing up for a gym membership at Planet Fitness. The dating I did for a good 6 months; alas, I’m ashamed to confess that the gym did not happen. Oh, no, I had a membership, I just didn’t use it. That’s right, I spent money for a full year’s membership and did not go once. I had every possible excuse – too busy, don’t feel well, too tired etc.

Well, I’m going now. I even have the Black Card membership, which allows me to bring along a friend. Yesterday, my older daughter came out of my room after weighing herself and asked me if I thought she’d gained weight. She’d gained 19 pounds and was stunned. I told her that we could make some changes to her diet. Considering the fact that she eats at her dad’s half the time, and the food there is a pasta-heavy carb-fest, I told her that we’d just be super diligent and about what she eats here at home with me, and she’d see some slow but healthy changes.  Then I asked her if she’d be willing to come with me to the gym to work out. She accepted immediately. 🙂 Continue reading Adding Another Component

What a Difference a Day (or two) Makes!

This morning’s weigh-in exceeded my expectations! Whatever water-retention issues I was having this weekend  have sorted themselves out, because the number that greeted my eyes when I ventured to step in the scale this morning was purely awesome. I am right on the -5 lb/2 weeks trajectory, and I will take that with both hands.

I am still struggling with the idea that my value as a person, my worth as a woman in particular, is so tied up with numbers: My age, the number on the scale, the score on the BMI charts, or a rating on the “10 scale.” I understand that the people who love me value me for more than these numerical criteria. I know that I just have to have patience and hope that someone will indeed love me the way I desire to be loved. Where this becomes difficult is when I get stuck in a negative feedback loop prompted by my self-loathing.

Banishing my negative thought patterns is my task, no one else’s.

In the meantime, yay me! Good job!

Discouraged, and Some Deconstruction

I made the mistake of weighing myself just now – a day early, midday, after meals, drinks and fully clothed. I was dismayed to find that a full week of stringent low-carbing and the scale had barely budged. An overwhelming rush of emotions washed through me: From frustration – “What’s the use? At this age, with my crazy hormones, I’ll never be able to lose weight like I used to!” to anger – “I can’t believe I spent all this time and work on this, for nothing!” to despair – “I’m always going to be this same fat, ugly, unloved and unloveable hideous hosebeat; I should just admit that my life is over.”

Ok, so, there’s a big jump in logic going on there, but really, what is logical about our emotions?

I need to debunk these beliefs in order to defeat the negative thinking. The one that stands out to me the most right now is the final one, because that is the one that is obviously teeming over with the most anger and hurt, and those are the emotions which provoke such strong urges to comfort eat and give up.

“I’m always going to be this same fat, ugly, unloved and unloveable hideous hosebeat; I should just admit that my life is over.”

There’s a lot of faulty logic there.

First, and most important is that my being a “fat, ugly, hideous hosebeat,” has anything to do with being “unloved and unloveable.” Yes, the past year spent on online dating sites and reading on a message board aimed at men’s issues have brought to light the depressing fact that, for men, appearance is practically the Number 1 criterion for even considering going out with someone. Oh, the complaints from the men came fast and furious how the only women on dating sites were land whales and heifers, gold-diggers and whores. Although the feedback on my appearance that I, personally, got back from the men I date was positive and often flattering, I’m sure that if I were x pounds slimmer and fitter, there might be a wider range in people showing an interest in me.

Logically, I do understand that whatever unhappiness I have will not magically disappear once I lose weight. I can go from being overweight and feeling unloved and unloveable to being thin and feeling unloved and unloveable. It’s obvious that I have to dig deeper, down to the source of my unhappiness and try to deal with the source.

Yeah, but this is where things get entangled.

I feel that loneliness is the root of my unhappiness.

And that brings us back to the point above. For most of my  life I have lacked that romantic relationship. Although I was married, ours turned into a loveless marriage not long into it, long before we separated. Since then, my relationships have been based on sexual attraction alone. Oh sure, some of them may have tossed around the L-word, but it was never the real thing.

It’s left me feeling that there must  be something about me that is fundamentally unloveable. Maybe it is something outside of my weight, some essential flaw of my character. It’s impossible to tell.

But about the weight, I’m afraid I had  been getting ahead of myself. I was envisioning a minimum 2-pound weight loss per week, and imagining how I’d feel in a few weeks and then months when I would be slimmer and fitter, and how then I’d feel finally worthy of the dating scene again, and would be rewarded with the Love of My Life…. Then this barely-there movement of the scale today was like the Universe saying, “NOPE. Not for you, honey.”

Sometimes it feels as though despite all my efforts, all my hard work, the Universe’s homeostatic mechanisms keep dragging me back to my starting point. The point that I can never escape. Then I think: What if it NEVER gets better? What if this IS as good as it gets? THIS is my life now. And that is extraordinarily depressing.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how just the simple act of stepping on a scale can cause me to go from 0 to full-on anxiety in the matter of a few  minutes.

Week One Round-Up

Here are the details for the first week of keto:

Date Total cals Carbs g  Carbs % Protein g Protein % Fat g Fat %
2/16/2014 1,026 29 11.5 77 30.53 65 57.98
2/17/2014 1,122 20 7.37 96 35.39 69 57.24
2/18/2014 1,160 11* 3.96 82 29.55 82 66.49
2/19/2014 1,072 15 5.8 68 26.31 78 67.89
2/20/2014 1,177 32 11.02 83 28.57 78 60.41
2/21/2014 1,262 48** 15.21 74 23.45 86 61.33
2/22/2014 1,283 35 10.28 85 24.96 98 64.76
8,102 total cals

Some daily averages:

Average Daily Calories 1,157
Average Daily Carbs  27.14 g, or 108.56 cals
Average Daily Protein  80.71 g, or 322.84 cals
Average Daily Fat  79.42 g, or 714.78 cals


*This day was the lowest I managed to get my carbs, and I did that by having a few leaves of butter lettuce and two tablespoons of salsa as my only carby-type stuff that day. Breakfast was two eggs fried in butter, a glass of cranwater and coffee with 2% milk and Truvia; lunch was my favorite chicken taco salad without the taco (that had a bit of lettuce and the salsa); Supper was a bunless burger with mayo, bacon and cheese sat atop a leaf of butter lettuce.

** The carbs are high on this day, 48 grams, and 15.21% of that day’s calories, because for an afternoon snack, I had a Think Thin Chunky Peanut Butter Protein Bar. As you can see from the nutritional info, that sucker had 24 g of carbs by itself:

think thin chunky pb bar

I imagine that I’ll try to stick to whole food, clean eating and avoid anything processed from a box. I was just desperately hungry for a snack that day. Next time maybe I’ll stick to some nuts or a couple tablespoons of peanut butter.

TIL: About Feeders and Gainers

Today I Learned (TIL) about feeders and gainers.

As a heath-care professional and as someone who has battled bulimia, and finally, as someone who still struggles daily with body dysmorphia, I find intentional extreme obesity unconscionable. I have some major disagreements with many so-called Fat Activists and proponents of Health at Every Size (HAES), which I’ll eventually discuss more in depth in a later post, but I wanted to share this eye-opening gem.

Going by the (Conventional Wisdom) Numbers

The conventional wisdom model of weight loss states that in order to lose weight, the calories in (what we eat) MUST BE less than calories out (what our bodies burn).

A pound of fat equals 3,500 calories.

My BMI, or Basal Metabolic Rate, basically, the calories needed to keep my typical activity level going without any weight change is 1,973. Any exercise or other activities I might do beyond my normal activity would mean that I need to add calories to my diet to maintain my current weight.

The theory states that in order to lose 1 pound per week, I would have to reduce my daily caloric intake by 500 calories. To lose two pounds per week, I’d have to lose 1,000 calories per day, so 973 – 1,473 calories per day is my range.

I have lost more than 2 pounds/week doing South Beach Diet in the past, so this conventional wisdom does not always hold true.

Secret Eaters

I just stumbled across this UK show, “Secret Eaters,” on Youtube.


I am hooked! I really wish that someone would make a version of this show for here in the US. Basically, a family volunteers to have their eating habits tracked for a period, one week, I think. Their house is rigged with cameras so that someone can log their food intake. Unbeknownst to the family, they are also followed by a pair of private investigators to see what they might be eating when not at home.

It truly is crazy just how many calories we can shovel into our gaping maws with mindless eating out of boredom without even realizing it!   I also had a moment of deep honesty last week and calculated the calories for one of my favorite comfort food meal, Peasant Breakfast. Brace yourselves.

Peasant Breakfast Breakdown:

Amout Ingredient Calories
5 medium russet potatoes 600
4 T salted butter 400
3 oz. medium green bell pepper 16.5
4 oz. medium onion 44
3 large eggs 210
2 T grated parm 44
1314.5 total

Oh my God. Granted, that would be two meals, usually breakfast and lunch, but still. I knew it was a lot of calories, but holy shit, that’s an ungodly amount of calories and carbs. It is just so good. I use Old Bay seasoning to add some spicy flavor. Now that I know for certain just how much of a gut bomb it is, I doubt I’ll ever make it as large as that ever again.

Progress, maybe?

So, I’ve had a rough couple of days. First, I’m in the middle of a massive purge and reorganization in the house. It’s stressful, but necessary and I truly want to get rid of all sorts of stuff. Just as a lot of my excess pounds on my body have strong ties to negative emotions, so do the very many excess pounds of clutter and accumulated items weigh my psyche down. It is as liberating to shed old possessions and slough off unnecessary THINGS as it is to burn off the extra fat that has been oppressing me. So yeah, this is good, and I am embracing it.

It’s a lot of work though, and as I rummage and sort through things, inevitably, I am smacked across the face with what a mess my life has become. It’s overwhelming at times. Yesterday, in fact, as my sister was helping me sort, at one point I started laughing  at the absurdity of it all, and then I started bawling. I am just a total emotional basketcase. Add to this scenario the new kitties we recently got. One of them has been purposely peeing on the furniture in the past week. Time and again I have had to scrub clean cat pee from my couch – a real mood breaker, let me tell you. Over the past five days, I’ve melted down over these cat-pee transgressions several times, and each time, that brain-mouth filter evaporated and I told my kids that the cats would have to go if this situation didn’t right itself soon.

Ugh. They’re upset. I’m upset. This totally would have been a carb-binge moment if ever there was one. Continue reading Progress, maybe?

A Day’s Meals

Today I thought I’d put in a typical day’s meals on a low-carb, high-fat diet. I’m using today’s meals for this.

Breakfast: Eggbeater omelette with honey ham, cherry tomatoes and cheddar

When I was doing the South Beach Diet, I’d make this just about every morning, and I’d use cooking spray instead of a solid fat like butter or coconut oil. South Beach is a low-carb, low-to-moderate fat, moderate protein diet, and I did have great results on it. At the moment, I am trying out a low-carb, high-fat (LCHF) diet with moderate protein. I’m aiming for 49 grams of protein daily determined like this:

1 gram of protein per kilogram of ideal body weight, minus 10%. So for instance, I’m assuming that my ideal body weight is 120 pounds:

  • Divide 120 pounds by 2.2 to determine your weight in kilograms= 54.5 kilograms
  • Multiply 54.5  x 1 = 54.5 grams of protein. Now subtract 10%.
  • Multiply 54.5 x 10% = 5.45 grams
  • 54.5 – 5.45 = about 49 grams of protein per day.

The formula is found here. Continue reading A Day’s Meals

Stress Cravings

I first noticed the intensity of my stress cravings when my first daughter was a toddler. My, oh, my, was she a pistol. At the time, I was also pregnant with our second child, so my hands were full – usually of squirming 2 year-old.  One day, when I’d taken her to Story Time at the local library,  she’d been especially lively. The librarians had a felt board set up and were using it to tell nursery rhymes. They had little felt characters that would stick to the board and could be removed and repositioned easily. During a regaling of “Little Bo Peep,” one of the librarians asked for a volunteer of the toddlers to help with the felt board characters. My daughter jumped up, ran up, snatched a little felt sheep off the board and ran around our section of the library, giggling madly and waving the sheep in the air while being chased by a librarian and a pregnant me. Continue reading Stress Cravings