Almost there but still a road to travel yet and then begins the hard part, maintenance. But let’s not allow that thought to cast a shadow on the most recent achievements.
It’s very significant that I’ve passed the 140 pounds mark as it marks a few milestones for me.
1. Tracey, my visual inspiration from the beginning is now gone. I set a long term goal last April to lose a whole ten stone (140lb) by whenever. When I realised that this was a whole person I randomly chose an image from Google and divided her into twenty 7 pound pieces which I have picked off over the course of this past year. Sometimes it seemed a huge task to remove all of the pieces and others they seemed to be flying off. I always kind of thought that the last few would be the hardest and I was prepared for that challenge as it approached but in the event they shifted faster than any of the others. I believe this was down to a shift in the focus of my eating habits from a largely fruit and vegetable based diet to a carb free diet. I hadn’t realised how much sugar I had been tipping into my body with all of that what I thought was harmless nutritious fruit, the juices and smoothies.
Clearly the big loss in this past month must be attributed to that shift. I don’t expect to maintain such fast weight loss, I am impressed by it but aware that for my body it was a change, another kick start like you get at the beginning of most healthy eating approaches and I am sure it will settle to a normal, healthy loss rate of a pound or two a week which is always my aim. But I can’t detract from the fact that this approach has had significant impact on weight loss and also on my general sense of well being. It can be difficult to tell when something is affecting you positively when you feel so healthy, alert, active and happy anyway but I definitely have noticed that working out is a little easier and I have more stamina. What was a push for me and had been for a long time suddenly became more easy to achieve in my cross fit work outs and so we’ve stepped things up for the first time in a few months. I really thought I’d reached my peak but no, all of this protein and the reduction of sugar has meant that my peak has yet to come. I have also found that I don’t feel hungry other than in the morning when i wake up and often I’m cooking meals hoping I am hungry when they are ready and finding that as a result my portion size has decreased dramatically. I can now sit and eat a small pork chop or chicken breast with a side of green leaves and actually be full for the rest of the evening. That is a real first for me and something I never thought I would achieve. The emphasis on a big protein rich breakfast and a protein based lunch and dinner has really helped me to get that balance right and I’ve been heading that way for some time but just not with the right foods. I haven’t removed fruit from my diet and it is amazing how good an apple tastes now or a few grapes or an orange when it feels more like a treat. I feel the hit from the sugar too which is surprising. I did have some heartburn issues for a couple of weeks but they have now settled and I’d hoped it was just my body getting used to the changes and it must have been as I’ve not experienced it for a week or so now.
So yeah Tracey kind of rushed out of the door with barely a goodbye in the end and it wasn’t the long lingering farewell I’d envisaged. Don’t get me wrong I’m so glad that happened but I’ll kind of miss having that visual goal and incentive. Although the poster will remain in my dining room to remind me, it’s time for the virtual blog Tracey to go. My visual incentive now is something I spotted on a blog post a long time ago and wanted to start doing then but decided to hold off until this point. I have two identical jars one with 30 glass pebbles in it and the other empty and each time I lose a pound one of the pebbles will be moved to the empty jar until the load has totally shifted. Then I will be an ideal weight for my height and finally a ‘normal’ person with regard to the dreaded BMI chart. I’ll be the top end of normal but that will do me, I’m not a dainty girl and I’m quite robust in terms of muscalature through all of the training I do so I’m never going to be a 120lb girl. 160-170 will do me fine and I’ll always allow myself a fluctuation within that with a high of 178 maximum.
So yeah onto achievement number 2.
2. I finally dropped below 200 pounds and currently sit at 198 with a total weight loss of 149 pounds in almost exactly one year.
3. I am no longer categorised at obese on the BMI chart, I am simply overweight as I may have mentioned in a previous post 😉
4. I was worried about this but I still have no sagging skin anywhere other than a bit of a loose sway when I wave… I’ve just started doing it like the queen though. No problem 😉 I’ve made a determined effort to try to avoid sagging skin and have blogged my various methods over the year but I do think it’s a combination of factors:
- genetics and there’s not a lot we can do about those. I have a mother in her 80’s with barely a wrinkle and aunties the same
- age – again there is nothing you can do about this but I do feel I’m the right side of 50 to still have some elasticity in me yet, not that I think after 50 all hope is gone because well cared for skin looks far better than neglected skin at any age
- hydration – I drink tons of water and know that it helps keep my skin moisturised from within
- steam rooms and mineral spas – I’m pretty sure keeping my pores unclogged and releasing those natural oils and complimenting them with mineral salts helps with general skin health. We have to remember our skin is an amazing organ, it needs treating well and that means nutritionally as well as rest and pampering. It doesn’t have to be expensive you can DIY at home easily
- exercise – keeping my muscles toned underneath the skin helps keep everything where it’s supposed to be and improved circulation through a good cardio vascular system helps keep that skin supplied with oxygen
- moisturising – I try to use natural oils and based creams on a daily basis of course the oil of the moment is coconut oil and I do use it and can’t say that it hasn’t been good for my skin
- safe tanning – I don’t use fake tan products but do allow myself to sun soak (we do need Vit D) when I get a chance but I do so sensibly, using high factor protection from both UVA and UVB, moisturising well and staying out of the sun at its hottest points ie when it’s highest in the sky
- nutrition – a healthy diet, high in organic produce with lots of vitamin C (look to vegetables for this such as spinach and kale rather than over dosing on sugary oranges). Doesn’t need to be expensive, you can grow both of these really easily in a container and if you can only afford to buy one organic produce in the supermarket make it one of these two
- No smoking – stands to reason
- Massage – a good massage to relax, moisturise and tone the skin never hurt anybody and they don’t have to cost either, most of your body you can reach yourself if you have nobody to do it for you and if you do have somebody to do it for you then go on a course together and save money on experts, although an expert now and then is a real treat
- Sleep and rest – like any of your body’s organs skin renews and repairs when you’re asleep so get plenty
I’m going to blog more about the changes I’ve been through in my anniversary post, coming soon but for now let this suffice as the summing up of my reaching this milestone and what it has meant to me in terms of making me feel like a winner for once, making me feel like I’m in control for once, making me feel happier than I ever felt in my life and just making me a better person. It’s not all been about food and exercise, it’s been about so much more, about mental health and emotional issues which underpin my problems with food but whatever it’s been about it’s not done yet, there is still a road to tread and lessons to be learned and as I shrink I know there is growth to be had. I’m just glad to be here now as I am able to see a future with my children and not worrying about them putting me in a box in the ground sooner than they have to.
Life is good and I made it that way, nobody else could do it, it was up to me and am I proud of myself for getting this far? I am awesome and for the first time in my life I actually believe that I am and don’t say it with my tongue in my cheek. I am awesome and I’m going to become even more awesome.
Thank you for reading and for your support it has been priceless and if you don’t mind I’ll be needing it a little longer.