Breaking It Down

Since the start of the month I’ve revamped my weight-loss and fitness efforts.  During the first two weeks of January I was down 6 lbs for a total of 27 lbs lost since last April.  Not too shabby if I do say so myself.  This week though I seem to have hit a plateau.  Last summer my step-dad had suggested that I try the South Beach Diet.  This is broken down into several phases where at first you eliminate all carbs & sugars including alcohol and fruit, and then thereafter you gradually start reintroducing healthy carbs & fruit back into your diet.  After the great results I had  this last year and it leading to some permanent healthy habits, I did this again during the first two weeks of the month. 

I’ve stayed within the guidelines of the food plan but I grew curious to the fact that I might not be getting enough nutrition or getting too much of other things.  A girlfriend of mine had told me about a free website called Spark People awhile back.  Yesterday I signed up and it has an area where you enter your meals.  It then goes ahead and tallies up your calories, carbs, proteins and fats for the day.  Then it tells you where you could be doing better.  This is of course after you enter your height and weight.  I was a little alarmed to see that although my intake of good fats is good I really should be eating less of them.   This could be the reason for the plateau.

This site encourages you to set goals for yourself and also to participate in the different groups available.  There is a  group of Arizonans who have their own group, as well as a group for people over 40.  I was quite impressed that all this was free.  A few years back I did Weight Watchers Online and I think Spark People has more to offer than WW  –And they were a paying site!

They also have recipes there with the nutritional info included.  I printed out a recipe for Cocoa Rubbed Pork loin so I’ll give it go and post it here if it’s any good.

On the exercise front I’m still going to that Latin Dance class.  My new friend Maria is there each time and saves a spot for me in the front row.  I think she may be friends with the whole class now as she is quite the character.  This despite the fact that she keeps telling me she doesn’t know anyone.  😉  She left the dance class early to do a cycling class.  My goodness!  I hope I have her energy when I’m her age.  She is amazing.

Boot Camp starts next Saturday.  This should be interesting.  I’ve never done anything like this but I’m looking forward to the challenge of it.  I hope I’ll see some real changes within myself .  The class lasts six weeks and each session is 2 hours long.  Although I’ve been enjoying the dance classes, they are not all that challenging.  I mean sometimes the steps involved are challenging but the aerobic aspect isn’t as high as I need it to be.  My face barely gets red and I find that I’m not sweating as much as the other people in the class.  I may also try alternating time on the treadmill or running outdoors when I can. 

So that’s where I’m at.  Hopefully soon this plateau will be a thing of the past and I can continue on to be a healthier me.

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20 thoughts on “Breaking It Down

  1. Sounds like an amazing effort on your side. Big cheer! So all I am going to do is keep my fingers crossed for you that it all works out and the plateau is at its end with a steep decline.

    • Thanks Irony. I weighed myself this morning and the darn scale still has not budged. On the bright side though at least I didn’t gain anything.

      I’ve added some new foods into my diet so we’ll see if that makes a difference. *fingers crossed*

  2. Any steps forward are great! Congratulations! It’s wonderful that you are having fun while you work on self improvement.

  3. Wow! That is not shabby at all!! Well done. I lost quite a bit of weight before my son’s wedding in Dec 2009 because I didn’t want to look like the frump in the photos LOL. I did it by posting little signs all over the kitchen “remember December” – this stopped me from impulse eating as it made me think “do I really want to open the cupboard and get a chocolate out?” (LOL well of course I do “want” to but if I remember what I want to look like in December I won’t eat it). Doing that for about 8 months sort of re-educated my eating habits.

    I do wish that I had a better exercise program though – you are doing wonderful active things. The only thing I do is walk.

    • I walk and I lift small weights when I feel like lifting. I think the walking is key to being fit.

      • Thats great Bettina. I have to get into the weights as well. Its supposed to be really good for your bones.

        I was talking to a friend of mine last night who said she had lost 19 lbs since September simply by choosing to eat salads with her meals rather than french fries. She does water aerobics and walks at the gym too. She didn’t even realize she had lost that much weight until she weighed at the doctors.

    • Thanks Emjay! Great job on losing weight before your son’s wedding. That is what motivated me as well. My sister got married last summer and I didn’t want to be known as ‘the fat one’. I’ve lost close to 10 lbs since the wedding.

      Walking is great exercise though! 🙂

  4. Sorry if I was a bit strong – long day. But I think you are hard on yourself with this dieting and I sometimes get a bit bossy about things like that. Scuse me please.

  5. I feel I must speak up here. I strongly suggest that you do not cut out carbs. You can never keep that up and as soon as you eat them again you will gain wweight. The reason is your body thinks it’s starving, chemically, it thinks so, and will retain fat faster after you start eating them again.
    I rarely eat white sugar. I buy Turbinado (aka Demera). I know it costs more but it tastes better and has vitamins. I drink a lot of hot tea. I do not eat bleached flour and have not for years (do not eat gluten anymore by the cruelty of nature. I do not eat at McDonalds or the like.
    When baking just use Turbinado sugar instead of white. If you are making icing it’s divine instead of powdered sugar! It has crystals in it.
    If that helps you.
    But most importantly, figure out your ideal weight. Yours – not Hollywood’s. I have seen a photo of you, you are gorgeous.
    I think you have the right attitude in taking dance class – like Emmy says. Exercise becomes very very droll when doing it for necessity.

    • It’s actually only for two weeks that you cut the carbs out so its not a permanent thing like say with the Atkins plan. The goal really is to stop cravings for refined carbs and sugars. After all the cookies I ate over the holidays I needed all the help I could get. 😉 I’m back to eating fruits and whole grains now. The South Beach diet suggests that you don’t go longer than the two weeks without the carbs because its simply not good for you.

      I’ll look for that sugar in the market. I’ve heard of it but didn’t know anyone who had actually used it.

      Thanks for the compliment on my picture. 🙂 That is very kind. Before I lost weight I was actually in the ‘obese’ range. I’m tall so I can carry a few pounds but I have high cholesterol and my knees were starting to hurt from the added pressure. Now I’m actually in the ‘overweight’ range so my contuing weightloss goals are only for another 15 lbs. I’m really not interested in being a twig but I knew once I hit my 40s I really needed to make some positive permanent changes.

      • I can understand wanting to not be obese. That is also unhealthy. I love the size I am right now – I gained some weight being off work for a month and now I have a wee bit of cleavage. Busting out of the 34 B! I do now have a roundness to my figure I did not have before and I know I look younger in the face for it. There is also that – thinner people look older past 40. I went to a very posh wedding once and all the women over 40 were skinny skinny in their Chanel suits. Their skin dripped from their chins. I filed that under “how to NOT age well”. Also I once read an interview with some actress and they asked her how she stayed so young looking at her age, around 50 – she replied “I maintain 10 lbs over my suggested weight”.
        The two weeks I can also understand – teaching how to not eat refined stuff is a good thing. Over here the flour is not refined and the Turbinado sugar is much more common. I saw some cookies today in the bakery near work that even had Turbinado sugar on top! Not that I could eat them…but I can eat oat things.

  6. Thanks Emmy. Latin dance is a blast. I can never get the smile off my face. Its so much fun.

    That is really fascinating about the animals becoming obese over the decades. I wonder if it would have anything to do with artificial light? The organisms in the gut theory is also equally as interesting.

    A few years back the Dairy Council had a campaign stating that if you had three servings of dairy each day that you’d lose weight faster. They supposedly had done a study on it. I wonder if that is all dairy or more so with yogurt. Whatever the case may be this is all defintely interesting stuff.

    • If I remember right it was disruption of melatonin / sleep from artificial light, decline of a certain beneficial bacteria, the rise of adenovirus and several enviromental pollutants.

      I do know that people who get more sleep are able to lose weight more easily as well (I read a lot about this stuff).

      To be honest, I would NOT trust a study about dairy done by the Dairy Council. These big groups tend to be dishonest especially when their products are losing popularity and some of them even pay scientists to fudge the data.

      Sad, isn’t it?

    • I remember that dairy thing. I do drink a glass of milk every night (lactose free, but hey, still it’s milk, and whole milk at that). I doubt dairy makes anyone thinner though. Unless like Emmy says, it’s got that bacteria in it.
      Over here one of the yoghurt companies says that yoghurt can reduce bloating, and I know that being bloated can add 5 lbs to your weight.

  7. Good for you. That’s excellent. Keep it up!

  8. That sounds great – I’m sure you’ll do well because you have a good attitude and energy. I love Latin dance, it’s my favorite actually.

    I don’t know much about the South Beach diet but it sounds good. I read recently about how 8 species of animal have become more obese over the decades, and not because of lack of exercise or fast food. They said the chances of that happening by coincidence is 8 million to one. So something is going on. They suggested light (which disrupts sleep) or organisms in the gut. That may explain why people who eat yogurt are thinner.

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