Weight Loss

I have struggled with my weight since I quit smoking and gained 50lbs. I vowed to never get over 200lbs in the late 90’s, but I just couldn’t control the weight gain. I wasn’t eating anything that bad, so I never could understand what I was doing wrong.

Last year in January 2013 I made a New Years resolution to start losing weight. I was 262lbs and I dropped 70lbs and went down to 192lbs. I was so proud of myself, but then both my partner and I decided that we’re both tired of eating nothing but fruits and vegetables and weight watchers frozen dinners every day for the last 6 months, so we decided we could eat restaurant food and regular store-bought food as long as we stayed within a certain amount of calories and portion sizes. Well, try as I might, I couldn’t drop any more weight and I plateaued at 192 for a whole month. Then the weight starting slowly coming back and recently I went right back up to 235. UGH!

So yesterday I decided screw this eating whatever the hell I want crap, I NEED to drop this weight, like right this minute. I started the Noom app all over again from scratch and when I weighed in for the first time I had already lost some weight, so I was 227lbs. For breakfast and my 10am snack I had a banana. For lunch I had a Weight Watchers frozen dinner. For my 3pm snack I had yet another banana and for dinner I had a Weight Watchers frozen dinner.

Most people say not to eat anything after 6 or 7pm. Well here’s my problem, that’s when my appetite really comes to life. It seems as though I’m starving at that time lol. I mean, I can eat a banana for breakfast and snack and then a little meal for lunch and then another banana for my 3pm snack, but around or after dinner time, it’s like I’m famished, like I haven’t eaten in 10 years. That’s when I’m expected to not eat any more food? Yeah, um… good luck with that lol.

Last night around 8pm I started going into the kitchen and I grabbed a slice of bologna and then a slice of salami. I really wanted to make a sandwich, but when I go on my diet, I don’t eat bread. I could have eaten way more food than I did, but I chose to be good. I took a sleeping pill around 10pm and went to bed around 11pm or so.

This morning when I woke up I weighed myself and it said I was 224lbs, so at least I know the lunch meat didn’t affect my weight and the food I ate yesterday was the right amount. The Noom app said I could eat 2000 calories, but I logged around 1300 or so. I did log the lunch meat. The bologna was yellow and the salami was red.

If I can just stick with it, I will lose weight. I have complete faith in my ability to lose weight since it worked last year, I just need to be 100% committed and use the word “NO” when asked if I want to go to KFC or Golden Corral.

I bought some veggies at the store, like I bought 2 things of cauliflower and some broccoli and brussel sprouts and some other things. I didn’t buy any salad stuff because I don’t like salad without either thousand island or ranch, and those are definitely not on the menu for me. Although I did lose 40lbs back in 2003 or 2004 when all I ate were salads and I used ranch dressing, but for some reason it doesn’t work for me anymore. I have to find what works best and do that.

I haven’t been riding my bicycle to lose weight because of the heat. The best time to ride my bike in the summer time is at 5am, but I can’t seem to get to bed until 3am, so that’s out. Last night I wanted to go to bed early because I’m so sick of sleeping in until noon. Now that summer is coming to an end, when the heat starts going away I can start riding around 10am or so. I just can’t stand the heat, not even to go for a 30 minute walk. I feel like a vampire out in the sun about to burst into flames.

I’ve tried to go back on my diet this year, then my partner would buy junk and naturally I would eat that junk and then give up. I’m not going to pass up a bag of potato chips or cookies on the counter. I have an addiction. Potato chips and cookies are like crack cocaine to me. I just need some willpower… like a ton of willpower lol. If willpower came in a can, I would drink it. Unfortunately it does not. So I’m working on myself so that I can be healthy, it just takes time and patience. I know I can do this because it worked before.

I love positive feedback, but everyone is different, so what works for you may not work for me and vice versa. I’m sure people are going to say “Well what you gotta do is eat this and that and then do this exercise and blah blah blah” and that’s awesome advice, but I have to do what my body can handle and what I’m comfortable doing. I really do appreciate the advice, and thank you for thinking of me and caring enough about me to try to help.

I am using Noom which gives lots of wonderful advice and articles and I am in a Noom group so I get to talk to a group of about 10 wonderful people who are all in the same boat. It’s more of a lifeboat, but a boat all the same. This is just something that I have to do for myself.

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Weight Gain

WeightGain

We went to the doctor’s office today so I could get my clearance note for surgery to remove my parotid gland.  They had me step on the scale and I was shocked to see that I was 205lbs.  So yeah, I’m a bit verklempt lol.

One of my issues with exercising is that when I walk or ride my bike or do anything that burns calories, the Noom app tells me that I can eat more calories, so I end up eating those extra calories, but then I might even go over those extra calories because I think to myself that I did such a good job that it’s okay.  Well, that’s not how it works.  I should still stick with 1400 calories, 1500 at the most.  Even if it says I can eat 1700, I should draw the line in the sand at 1500.

I’ve been using the Noom app for my cardio, but I decided to download the Noom Cardio Trainer.  I’m sure that it will still show the extra calories in the Noom app, but I just want to see how it goes with the Noom Cardio Trainer.

I’ve been eating those Quinoa and Tofu burgers every day with hamburger buns which is not a good idea; I should be eating them without any bread.  Here is my typical day:

Every morning I will either have a bowl of Malt-O-Meal or a banana for breakfast, which by the way the Malt-O-Meal is a green food (which means healthy) and the banana is obviously a green food.  For my morning snack (second breakfast?) I usually have a banana.  For lunch I normally eat a Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinner, although I’ve been eating the Quinoa and Tofu burgers, both by the way are green, except for the bun of course.  Afternoon snack (linner?) is typically a banana or crackers or sometimes I will have a bowl of broccoli.  That has been consistent.  Dinner is typically a Weight Watchers Smart Ones, but I’ve been eating the Quinoa and Tofu Burgers.  For evening snack I’ve been eating a lot of crackers.  I need to stop doing that, but I get so hungry that it feels like I’m famished.

I’m assuming that my issue here is the bread and the crackers.  I also have to admit that I’ve been eating candy corn, but not daily.  I’m guessing that the amount that I’ve eaten so far is finally catching up to me, so I will stop eating them for the rest of the season.  If I am having this much difficulty from the candy corn, just imagine how it’s going to be when Eggnog is available in stores.  I’m going to go crazy because I just LOVE eggnog lol.

So getting back to the Noom cardio trainer, I have set up 5 days a week to go riding on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  I’m going to go out 5 days a week to do at least 11 miles per day, if I can do more, then great, but I’m not going to push myself that hard.  The app suggests 5 days a week, so I’m giving myself 2 days off, but not 2 consecutive days which is why I chose Sundays and Wednesdays as my days off.

balance ballI am also going to buy that Gaiam Total Body Balance Ball Kit which is sold on Amazon for $20.  It has an exercise DVD with it which I can watch while doing the exercises in my bedroom.  The doctor at Physical Therapy told me I should buy one so I can do exercises for my back since I only have 3 more sessions left.  My insurance only pays for so many sessions, then I’m on my own.  My back isn’t in as much pain as it was, but anyone who has, or anyone who knows anyone with scoliosis knows that the pain is really bad.  The only thing that really helps my pain is the exercises.  Pain meds don’t do anything for my back pain, they help my parotid gland pain, but not my back pain.  $20 is a small price to pay for pain relief.  I wanted to buy one at Target, but they were the same price, but without the DVD.

I really hope I can get back down to my comfortable weight of 192lbs and possibly get back on track with my weight loss so I can get down to my ultimate goal of 170lbs.  Considering I lost 70lbs this year, 35lbs shouldn’t be that difficult to lose, although it’s harder than I thought.

So to recap, my goal is to stay away from Halloween Candy and any other holiday sweets, bread and to exercise more and to try not to eat more than 1500 calories per day, even when the app says I can eat more.

Ready… set…  GO!

Week 35

week 35 collage

I am absolutely freaking out that I can’t seem to lose weight anymore, and instead of maintaining my weight, I am actually gaining.  I have no excuses so I’m not going to say that it’s because of my back pain, which turns out to be scoliosis, because I got my bike back and haven’t been riding it.  I have no excuse for not riding it.

So why haven’t I been riding my bicycle and why have I been gaining weight you ask?  Well, I’m not going to blame anyone because I am in control of what I eat and what I do, or don’t do.  I would like to say that because I haven’t been able to afford the Smart Ones meals every week that that is why I haven’t been able to lose weight, but that’s no excuse.  Although I have been eating, or trying to eat healthy fruits and vegetables, I have also been eating the Banquet dinners which are a lot cheaper than the Michelina’s.  One of the Banquet meals was green in the Noom app, but all the rest have been either yellow or red.  But you can’t say I haven’t tried eating healthy because I have been eating 1 1/2 to 2 cups of broccoli or mixed veggies with broccoli, cauliflower and carrots before eating the Banquet or Michelina’s frozen dinners.  I have also been eating Malt-O-Meal for breakfast, which shows up as green in the Noom app.

I have been doing everything right, well, except for every time my partner buys cookies, I end up eating half of the package.  I have also been extra hungry and been snacking on more wheat thins than I’m supposed to be snacking on.  I’ve also been snacking on other things because the mad hunger seems to be back like it was before I went on my weight loss journey.  It’s hard to calm down my food cravings when I have deprived myself for so long.  Even though I know something is bad for me, I’ll want it that much more.  I could be eating much worse, trust me, but I’m doing my best to stay away from much worse.

So yeah, I am very disappointed in myself, but I got my check and printed out some coupons for the Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinners and we’re going to go to Food Maxx today to buy some and more Malt-O-Meal.  I love those.  I am also going to ask my partner if he will please stop buying cookies and any other snacks, and if he does, be sure to hide them from me so I don’t see them and eat them.  I am also going to ask that he not ask me if I want to go to the Mexican restaurant or McDonald’s anymore because those are too tempting for me.  I don’t mind Subway, but even that is bad because of the bread, despite the fact that I always get the 9-grain wheat.

I have been doing exercises at Physical Therapy 3 days a week for approximately 30 minutes each day, which averages out to 177 calories burned each time, but I need to step it up with riding my bicycle.  I haven’t been riding it, and again this is no excuse, because my back and front tires keep going flat on me and I don’t know why.  I don’t understand why this keeps happening to me.  It’s frustrating to me.  I can’t pump the tires with my hand pump because it irritates my carpal tunnel syndrome, and I can’t keep wasting the Co2 cartridges to keep air in them daily.  1 tire uses more than 1 cartridge of air.  That’s why I haven’t been riding, because I hate having to pull over every time my tires go flat, and I can’t find what is causing them to go flat.  It’s frustrating as hell.

I wanted to save the money from the Etsy shop to buy a new bicycle, but nobody is buying anything and the Etsy shop is costing me more money every month than I am making in profits.  If people don’t start buying keychains and earrings, I’m going to have to close my Etsy store because I just can’t afford to keep paying the fees.  Of course, I will keep what items I have listed because I had to pay to list them, so I will keep them until they expire, but if nobody buys them before then, then I won’t relist them.  Whatever doesn’t sell will end up being Christmas presents because I don’t know what else to do with them.  Boy that sure showed me how unpopular my ideas are.

Wow I have totally gone off topic, haven’t I?  Anyway, I will try to do better with my diet.  If I can’t lose weight, then at least I’d like to maintain a healthy weight.  I’d love to maintain 190 if I can, which means I need to lose 6lbs again.  I’m hoping the Smart Ones will bring me back down.  I need to start saying no more too.  Those are my 2 goals for the next month.  Hopefully I can get back down to 190.  Hopefully…

Week 27 with @Noom

Noom Logo

Today is day 1 of Week 27 and I am very happy to say that despite what I ate for the 4th of July, I actually lost weight this week.  So yay me!

We went to Golden Corral and the only thing I ate that day before we went was breakfast, so I was nice and hungry by the time we finally made it there at 4pm.  We haven’t been there since January 1st before I started my weight loss plan with Noom, so we wanted to indulge just once, and boy did we indulge.

I was good though.  I did have a few plates, but they weren’t packed with food and I logged everything on my plate.  I actually remember what I ate.

Plate 1: Salad.  I had lettuce, cucumber, chicken, olives and my dressing was light ranch.  I don’t care for vinaigrettes.  I know I should use those, but I don’t like them.  I topped it with some sunflower seeds.

Plate 2: Medium rare steak, penne pasta with a tiny amount of alfredo sauce, corn and spinach.

Plate 2: Another piece of steak Medium Well, broccoli, cauliflower and garlic biscuit.

Dessert: Apple pie, because who doesn’t eat apple pie on July 4th?

So all 3 of my plates were 799 calories according to the Noom app and my dessert was 297 calories.  My total calories for that day were 1387/1400.  I did end up eating a banana before bed which I didn’t log.

So despite all of that, today I weighed in at 193.6lbs for a weight loss total of 69.4lbs since January 5th 2013.  My goal is to get down to 170lbs and I am at 74.62%.

I won’t be going to Golden Corral too often because that is a really bad place to go, but at least when I did go, I was responsible enough to eat my veggies.  Besides the pasta and the alfredo sauce, salad dressing, biscuit and the pie, I pretty much stayed away from all the bad foods that I used to eat there.  If we ever do get to go back there after I lose the rest of this fat, I know how to eat properly and I can make better decisions.

Huffy Nassau

Bright side, we went to Target yesterday and I saw the bike that I want to save up for.  I’ve been selling keychains and earrings on Etsy, so whatever I get from the sales of those things are going towards buying a new bicycle.  That is if people will buy them lol.  I have exactly $200 worth of merchandise in a box in my room and according to the Target website, this particular bike (pictured) is only $125.99 and is only sold through their website.  Although, the bike we saw at Target was blue and it didn’t have a price tag, but we assumed it was $200 just like the other bikes next to it.  I don’t care which I get, as long as it’s a good sturdy bike.  This one pictured is a Huffy Fresno.  Sounds good to me!

A bicycle is the perfect tool for exercise for me since I have back problems, which by the way I had x-rays for so I will get those results next month when I go back to the doctor’s office.  I can ride for hours and burn hundreds of calories and walking is too painful, so which exercise do you think is the better one?  I say cycling.

At any rate, this week was a good week for my weight loss and I look forward to where I will be next week, so until then..

Update: I am closer to that bike.  I have $67.73 saving up, so I just need a few more sales and then I can buy the bike.  I basically need to sell either a dozen pairs of earrings or 2 dozen keychains, and then I can buy it.  By the time I have the money saved up, the bike will be more expensive, or they won’t sell it anymore so I will end up having to pick another one, but that’s fine.  I had a different bike in mind, but this one has the rack in the back which I can put my Townie Basket on for grocery bags and it has a basket in front that I can also use for my Noom water bottle and for keeping the tire repair tools in.

My new appreciation for vegetables

mixed vegetables

I ate vegetables growing up, so it’s not a new concept to me, but, I do have an issue with some vegetables which is why as an adult I didn’t eat too many.

Okay so I have always liked carrots, broccoli and cauliflower.  I hated HATED brussel sprouts with a passion.  I didn’t mind the taste, but my step father gave them a horrid nickname, so in my mind I associated them with something gross and therefore I hated them.  He called them “Monkey Balls.”  I knew that they were vegetables, but I had the image of testicles in my head, so the taste was just awful to me.  I couldn’t even look at them because all I could think was that I was eating testicles.  I ate them when I was a kid because I had experience with not being allowed to leave the table until my plate was cleaned and I didn’t want to have to be punished for not eating them, so I would grin and bear it.

Throughout my adult years I refused to buy them, I wouldn’t even look at them when grocery shopping because I still associated them with testicles, so I just never bought them.  A few years ago I decided that it was stupid that I gave him that control over me, so I bought some and steamed them and they were surprisingly good.  Because I didn’t associate them with testicles anymore, they actually had a different taste to me than what I remembered as a child.  They are actually good.

I have always had an aversion to vegetables in my adulthood which is one reason why I got so fat, because I never ate vegetables.  I actually love eating vegetables now and make sure that I get at least 2 cups of vegetables for dinner every night, and sometimes for a snack.

Take this picture for example.  I like to take several different kinds of vegetables and steam them all together and mix them in a bowl.  This bowl has broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, spinach and carrots.  I will eat the vegetables first before anything else because one of the Noom articles that I read said to eat the vegetables first, then the main course and whatever other sides.  I make it a habit of eating vegetables now and I actually love the taste.

So my old habit of eating junk is a thing of the past, and my new habit of eating healthy is my future.  I will always keep vegetables in the freezer to steam with my dinner from now on.

Dieting and Dining Out

beef broccoli

Dieting and dining don’t usually mix too well because let’s face it, restaurant food is fattening and high in calories.  Chinese food is especially bad because of all the salt that goes into the sauces they pour over the food.

Last night my partner decided that he wanted to go to Rice Bowl because he was hungry for some Chinese food.  It caught me off guard because I was just about to put a Weight Watchers Smart Ones meal in the microwave.  He isn’t really trying as hard as I am to lose weight, so to him going out to eat isn’t that big of a deal, but I’m really focused on it and don’t want to do anything to sabotage myself.  I did agree and we went.

I looked through their huge menu for something that I thought might be low cal and practically everything they had was bad for you.  I usually always get something with chicken, but even their chicken is high in calories because of the sauce and because of how it was cooked, so no matter what I got, it was going to be bad.  I did get steamed rice and Beef Broccoli.

I had my phone with me with the Noom app loaded so that I would be able to find out how many calories everything had and to see whether it was red or yellow (let’s face it, nothing is going to be green lol).  I did find that the steamed rice and the beef broccoli were both yellow so I knew they were okay.

As we were waiting for our food, I saw a waiter bring another table their food.  My jaw was nearly on the floor because of how high the food was piled on each plate.  I was thinking that it’s no wonder people are so fat.  I mean, you don’t need that much food.  Your stomach is the size (or should be) of your fist, so you really shouldn’t need any more than that.  Peoples stomachs are maybe 4 times the size of their fist from being stretched over time, so they can consume that much food and probably still be hungry.

I was happy that my plate wasn’t as high.  I probably only ate a quarter of my food before I started to feel full, and that is how it should be.  Thanks to eating smaller portions, my stomach has shrunk so it is indeed now the size of my fist so I can be satisfied with a normal amount of food.  I felt uncomfortable just sitting there watching my partner eating, so I nibbled on more of my food just so it didn’t look like I was rushing him.  We took the leftovers home and I had half of what was in the box for lunch and I will eat the rest for dinner tonight.

It’s nice to be able to go out once in awhile, but my goodness, that’s a lot of food.  I wish they had a diet menu for people who are trying to watch their calories and portions.  Not everyone wants to eat 4 times of what they should be eating.

When I was a kid, my mother would guilt me into eating everything that was on my plate, that’s not a good thing to do in this day and age when everyone is so heavy.  People need to be responsible for their own health and limit their portions to what their stomach should be able to handle and take the rest home instead of cleaning their plate.  You can’t just blame people for being so heavy when the restaurants are serving such big portions.  People are responsible for their own actions, but restaurants have to take on some of that responsibility as well.

People are so focused on blaming McDonald’s for obesity when they are forgetting that fast food is just a tiny part of the problem, they should also be focusing on casual dining restaurants as well.  A Big Mac and Large Fries are tiny compared to the amount of food that was being consumed in that restaurant last night by each person.

I am just happy to know that I have the sense enough to know my limit now and am taking responsibility for my body instead of doing what other people expect me to do.

I’ve Lost 28lbs In 2 Months with the @Noom Android App

mid picture

I didn’t think it would be possible for me to be as happy about my body as I am right at this very moment.

My weight loss journey began on January 5th 2013.  I didn’t want to make a cheesy New Years Resolution because every time I do, I don’t keep it.  I was afraid of jinxing myself, so I decided that I wasn’t going to do it.  But then I started thinking about it and figured, what’s the harm in saying I want to lose weight, but not because I feel obligated to make a New Years Resolution, but because I want to lose weight and be healthy.  Not just go on a diet, but try to change my eating habits for good.

As I was looking for a new weight loss app, I found Noom right on the Google Play Store page on my new HTC One V from Virgin Mobile.  It was a free app so I figured what the heck, let’s install it and see what it looks like.  I fell in love with it right away because of all of the things it can do compared with some of the other diet apps I had installed.  I wanted the pro version, so instead of paying a monthly fee for it, I just paid for it for life.  I know, I should have played with it to see how it would work for at least a week or so, but I already knew it was going to help me lose weight, and well, here I am today.

This is only half of my weight loss journey though, not even half yet.  I want to lose 63lbs, so I still have a way to go.

I know people are going to ask what I did to lose 28.4lbs in 2 months.  Well, I logged everything I ate everyday in the Noom app.  They have Green foods, Yellow foods and Red foods.  So say you are eating vegetables like Broccoli or Brussels Sprouts, those are green.  The Weight Watchers Smart Ones frozen dinners are green, and that is what I ate for lunch and dinner every day for the last 2 months.  Basically, I’ve been trying to eat anything and everything that is green, but I have been eating a few yellows and reds here and there because you can have them, just not as much as the greens.

Just to note, I am not just going to eat healthy to help me lose weight.  I am changing the way I think about food and I do plan on continuing to eat healthy after I have lost all the weight because I want to stay healthy.  I do not want to gain the weight all over again.  I’ve also been learning what is in the food that I have been eating that made me fat and that is also my motivation to eat healthy.  They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but this old dog is learning new tricks everyday and will stick with it.

I have been making my own peanut butter and sugar-free strawberry jam and sugar-free applesauce and even making my own banana ice cream.  I have also been finding recipes for healthy treats like cookies made out of fruit and oatmeal.  Those are really good.  I made a recipes page on my website that I thought I’d share.  I’m still adding more when I find them.

The only thing I have not done yet to help me lose weight is exercise, and I have a very good reason.  I have tried to go for walks, and we went out a few times in the beginning, but I have degenerative disc disease in my lower spine which makes walking very painful.  I can ride the bike because I am sitting down, I just can’t walk for too long.  The back wheel on my bicycle kept deflating because the rim tape broke and I didn’t know it, but I have fabric rim tape on it now and the tube is filled with air so I can finally start riding again.  Thankfully my back doesn’t hurt when I’m on the bike.

So, like I said, I am only halfway there.  I just wanted to give an update of my current progress.  See you again when I have lost all 63lbs.