Saturday, September 8, 2007

Look! My pants are getting baggy!

As a person with a slow-normal metabolism, I'm always needed to exercise regularly if I was going to have that second helping or dessert. I am a veteran of most of the diets out there. I find nutrition interesting and read on it.

Back in 1977, I interviewed the author of the liquid protein diet, and decided to try it. A pathologist in the area was doing the weekly bloodwork and oversight this diet required, and I was really motivated. Fortunately, about the same time, the manufacturer came out with a liquid protein flavor that didn't require mentholatum in the nose to choke down (I was REALLY motivated.) I worked out five times a week while on the diet and read a number of books on dieting and eating psychology and how to change my lifestyle. I quit tasting anything when I was cooking. I still don't. In 21/2 months, I lost 65 pounds, and I never felt better or had more energy in my life. I learned to enjoy the feeling of an empty stomach. (My husband, however, said he caught me several times caressing the food in what he thought was an unseemly way.) Re-entering the eating world was a little touchy before I settled on a comfortably full feeling that wasn't feeling stuffed and settled down.

Yeah, I know. Lose it fast, gain it back immediately. Well, I kept at least 80 percent of that weight off 20 years. And I continued to work out.

And then I developed RA and sat down on my bum. Lost mass quantities of muscle tone, and gained, mmmm, about 50 pounds. I don't quite know why I did that. I knew better. I didn't and don't want to become debilitated, but I made sure that's what happened. Go figure.

For the last year, I've been following my "little plate" rule--if it fits on a luncheon-size or salad plate, I can have anything I want. No layering allowed. The tummy becomes accustomed. And almost effortlessly, I was losing two to four pounds a month.

Something happened about two months ago or more. I lost my appetite, for one thing. It was summer and sultry, but--I just wasn't hungry. So I quit eating. At all, some days. No, I didn't forget to eat. Eating anything just sounded icky. Last coupla weeks, my energy has been shot. Big surprise there.

I don't have any scales. Last week was my birthday, which is my day for making resolutions and goals, rather than New Year's. So the day before, I plugged my quarter into the electronic digital scales at the grocery store. And nearly fainted. I had lost a significant amount of weight. The next day at a friend's, I weighed on her scales. Yep, hers were lighter than the grocery's. I had really lost that weight. And once I noticed, I began to see how roomy my pants and shirts have become. I haven't lost so much I need a new wardrobe yet, but my clothes are definitely roomy.

Yeh, I had farkled my health and done stupid stuff but I had lost weight. Always a thrill for this woman. Well! I thought. Now to build on this. So I've started on a regimen to eat three meals a day (don't always make it),and put nothing but healthy food in my mouth (and I do count the two scoops of ice cream Thursday). Fortunately, I really, really like squash, brussel sprouts and broccoli. A week later, my energy level is almost back to normal. And I've lost another three pounds, which is a little fast for a sedentery 64-year-old woman. I've started exercising again. I'm seeing a chiropractor for some of the back problems. I am hopeful for the first time in a long time. Won't it be nice if my doing something stupid turns out well? I have more results already than I had expected, however ill-gotten. The effort I am now putting in is worth it, whatever the results. I have to remember that.

First-born Syndrome is almost killing my oldest son, I think, who is aquiver with desire to tell me what I need to do next and to pick up the pace on what I am already doing. But he is holding his tongue, because he really does love his mother. And I appreciate it. Second-born is more laid back. He just makes "keep comin" signals with his hands.

I had to write about this, since I am so intently scrutinizing my own navel at the moment. A lot of my concentration is here for now. And God knows we women will almost always show interest in another woman's tale of, "There I was when I lost weight" story.

My knees are very grateful. They have quit hurting the day after my cycling exercises.

So I will see where this next year takes me. And I will try to be more mature in my behavior henceforth. In the meantime, it's kind of fun for a change to be trying to eat MORE calories instead of cutting down. That won't last long, of course, but still.


Cherlyn said...


night lightning woman said...

Thank you very much. I'm working out twice a week and seeing the chiropractor, and feeling better than in years. Each day I give thanks for my blessings and (of course) ask for more.