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Friday, October 3, 2014

One Pound At A Time.

Okay, people!  Let's talk diets, weight loss and numbers.  Specifically my diet, my weight loss, and my numbers.  It is my blog after all!  ;)

While the entire blogging population seems to be doing the Whole 30 or the 21 Day Sugar Detox to jump start their weight loss efforts, I've gone retro and I've been doing the Atkins Diet.

All three programs are extremely similar, the difference being that on Whole 30 and the Sugar Detox  you must avoid cheese.  There is no way I'm avoiding cheese!  That's one of my favorite foods and a life with no cheese is just plain sad. Once realizing that the other trendy new weight loss approaches banned cheese,  I jumped on the 1984 bandwagon and Atkins it was!

{Quick aside - After I had Sarah (ten years ago!)  I did the Atkins diet for a year and a half and lost massive amounts of weight. However, right as I was about to enter the maintenance phase, Dan got a new job, we sold our house, moved in with my parents for a year and I stopped following the plan and just started eating whatever my mom was serving.}

Back to Atkins 2014!  It appears that they've slightly changed the guidelines on Atkins since I did it in 2004 but basically it's the same premise.  Check out their website for all the details but here are the four phases summed up:

Kick Start - This purpose of this phase is to  shift your body from burning primarily carbs to burning primarily fat, kick-starting weight loss.  You are supposed to eat only 20 grams of Net Carbs per day and you can choose from meats, cheese!, eggs, and an approved list of veggies.   This phase should last a minimum of 2 weeks but you can do it longer.  Also, you should try to get roughly 15 carbs from veggies.

Phase 2 - Starting at 25 grams of Net Carbs daily, begin to increase overall carb intake in 5-gram increments. This means gradually reintroducing a broader array of carb foods as you step up the Carb Ladder, finding your personal carb balance. It could level off anywhere between 30 and 80 daily grams of Net Carbs or even higher. Your personal number is impacted by your age, gender, activity level, hormonal status, and other factors as you continue to lose weight.

Phase 3 -  This is the Pre-Maintenance/Fine Tuning phase where you will start to add grains, starchy vegetables, and more fruit increasing your daily Net Carb intake while continuing to lose weight/not gain weight.  Once you determine your body's carb limit and are happy with your new weight and know how many carbs you need per day to maintain that weight, then you are ready for the final phase.

Phase 4 - This is not so much a phase as a permanent lifestyle. In general, the foods you eat in this phase are the same ones you’ve already been eating. There are some foods you tried to reintroduce earlier without success that you can now handle. You can experiment with these foods at any time as long as your weight remains under control. 

Let's talk numbers:
I started this diet on August 21 - 6 weeks and 1 day ago.  And as of today, I have lost 6 1/2 pounds.  That may not seem like much but that's roughly a pound a week and according to all the weight loss gurus, that's about where you want to be to insure that the weight stays off permanently.

Before I got pregnant, I weighed 130 pounds and I was a size 6.  I gained 60(!) pounds during the pregnancy and even though there were a lot of factors adding to that 60 pounds, most of it was the fact that I ate like a boss for 9 months. (And I'm not going to lie, I enjoyed every morsel.)

But 3 months postpartum, I found myself at 153 pounds and the scale was not budging.  And it was depressing.  I was eating like I was prior to the pregnancy but nothing was happening.  I even started doing the 30 Day Shred.  But nothing.  It's like my body had determined that 153 was it's new happy place.  Well, I can guarantee you that 153 was not my happy place! 

And while we are talking numbers - 153 pounds on me means size 12!  That was probably the most depressing of all.  23 pounds and 3 pants sizes bigger than I had been a mere year ago.  Suddenly all those cheeseburgers and BLTs did not seem worth it.

That's when I decided, on a random Thursday morning after staring at 153 on the scales yet again, that I couldn't take it any longer and decided that I would do the Atkins diet.  

And I've been happily eating meat, cheese, and mayo ever since.  I still eat hamburgers, but I eat them bun-less.  I still eat BLT's but large leaves of lettuce have now become my bread.  I still eat steak but with Hollandaise sauce on it instead of Heinz 57.  I eat green beans instead of mashed potatoes.  I eat omelets instead of pancakes.  

My size 12s still fit but they are getting looser by the day.  I'm happily looking forward to seeing size 10, hopefully in a few weeks or so.  

My goal weight is 130 pounds and I'm giving myself until April to reach that goal.  The old saying is 9 months on, 9 months off, but I'm cutting myself a little slack.  My motto is 9 months on, 12 months off.  And I'm cutting myself that extra slack because at age 45, the weight just doesn't come off as quickly as it did at 35.  

So, I'm down 6 pounds with 17 to go!  

And I should also mention that I've started running again. Since we are talking numbers, I used to run 3 miles 4 or 5 times a week.  And I could do those three miles in roughly 30-35 minutes.  Not super fast but that's where I was.  Over the past 6 weeks of running, I have gradually worked my way up to 2 miles in 35 minutes.  I'm not running nearly as far or as fast as I used to, but I keep reminding myself that I'm toting around a lot of extra weight.  Hopefully my times and distances will increase as my weight decreases.    

And that's it in a nutshell -  Retro diet + slow morning runs = steady weight loss. 

I have a plan, a goal and a time frame and hopefully by April, my old figure!  



Colleen said...

Wow, good for you Beth! I don't have the discipline for an elimination diet right now, but if I did it would be no carbs, it works great.

Elise said...

You go, Beth!!

Ferrell Boys Mom said...

You are an inspiration! I need something or someone to motivate me into sticking with some diet and exercise program. Keep posting how you're doing and maybe I'll get inspired. :)

Mari said...

Yay for you! I really need to get going on some sort of a plan again, but just can't get myself started, so you're an inspiration!

Madeline said...

You are so motivating!! In a short while I'll be on the bandwagon with you, but I'm not going to give up cheese either! Keep up the good work!

Michelle said...

Good job! I'm trying to lose weight too! I'm just using the live strong app and trying to exercise 4-5 times a week. In down 6 lbs too with about 20 more to go...very slow going!

Jenny said...

Good for you Beth! Slow and steady, for sure. I'm already stepping into another Whole 30 because boy did that reentry week do some damage to my numbers...

I love that you set an end date. I think I need to make some long term goals like that to ensure things stay permanently slimmer.

Busy Bee Suz said...

It sounds like you are on the right track!!! When the coach does atkins, he drops weight quickly. My MIL just did it this past year and lost 30lbs-and at 69 years old that is great!
Best of luck to you!!!