Wednesday, December 10, 2014


161 lbs.


Yesterday I finished my Optifast Maintenance class.  This was the final weekly class of my program at the clinic, and I'll move on to attending monthly Booster classes for as least a year, and hopefully longer.  I consider this a huge milestone for me.  I officially completed my program, but the new life continues on.  We did an exercise of remembering what life was like at our heaviest.  I have the benefit of looking back at the beginning of this blog to keep those memories fresh in my mind. (My First Post) but it was wonderful, nonetheless, to really look at how much better my life is now that I'm not carrying the extra weight.  The best word I can use to describe how I feel is "Free".

  • Free from the chronic pain of sciatica and Achilles tendonitis
  • Free to blend in during social situations and out in the world
  • Free from the feeling that I might die soon of a heart attack. (I frequently worried about this.)
  • Free to buy and wear any kind of clothing I want at a normal store (and free to choose a personal style!)
  • Free to engage in fun physical activities with family and friends - hiking, kayaking, walking distances, swimming in public, yoga and many adventures ahead!
  • Free from the anxiety of fitting into chairs, booths, amusement park rides, cars, boats
  • Free to travel on airplanes in comfort, with room between me and the next person
  • Free from immediate and unconscious episodes of emotional eating
  • Free from the cravings induced by a diet consisting primarily of carbohydrates
  • Free from the embarrassment and disappointment in myself for not getting a handle on my weight and health.
Basically, many wonderful things I want to do in this life, my only life, I am able to do now because I shed the extra weight.  That is freaking glorious!  

Am I a perfect physical specimen?  Nah.  I'm still a little heavier than I maybe could be.  I'm working on it and have a lifetime to tweak my diet and weight numbers.  There is still so much for me to learn through the maintenance process, but I don't feel pressured to have to have all the answers right now. 

I also have physical activity goals.  I'm training for the Rock n Roll Half Marathon (will run/walk it), and I hope to one day be able to run a complete 5K without stopping.  There are many more strength and speed goals that I'll be able to challenge myself with.


As I mentioned, I'm still trying to figure things out with my diet. The scale has been creeping up despite relatively clean eating and lots of exercise, so I have decided to switch gears a bit.  Since starting my Maintenance class, I rationalized a few more carbs than I had initially intended to eat.  Even though I lowered my calorie level, I have seen the scale creep up and down, but really not move down consistently.  I have some of my Optifast products as a back up, but I'd really love to try and figure out a sustainable way of eating so that I can maintain my weight (and lose the few pounds I gained since stopping the fast)  I realize that I've put on muscle since I stopped the fast.  I'm lifting weights, hiking and jogging.  I'd just like to keep building the muscle, but lose some of the stored fat as well.  My clothes all fit fine, so I think I'm looking at a a body fat/muscle % issue now.

In effort to be as transparent as possible, and in case anyone is interested in the wild musings of someone tweaking their diet, I will share with you my new dietary plan/experiment.  I've decided to lower my carbohydrate intake considerably.  I'm striving to keep it under 10% of my calories, and make up the calories with healthy fats and reasonable (not excessive) protein.  My carbs will come from vegetables grown above ground and some berries.   I've been reading about a ketogenic diet, and want to try it.  I have two hopes for this plan.  I'm looking to burn my stored fat as my primary energy source (by staying in ketosis) and I'd like to be able to raise my calories (to 1500-1700 kcals) in an effort to help rev my metabolism a bit.  I'm exercising a great deal, and I don't think 1300 kcals is enough for me.  One wild card in this way of eating will be its impact on my athletic performance.  I will see if I can run and hike as vigorously on a low level of carbs.  It remains to be seen, and I'll let you all know.

I'm giving this experiment two weeks and I'm weighing myself daily to see how it goes.

That's it for me for now.  I hope all of you are enjoying. and not stressing over the holiday season too much.  I'm making spiced nuts to give out as gifts for my neighbors.  I'm sure cookies will be brought into the house, but I'll try and be strong! We are having an "experience" Christmas this year.  We cashed in our frequent flyer miles and booked a cruise for Dec. 26th.  So we're not doing very many presents this year.  Everyone is happy with that plan, and I'm finished with all of my family shopping.  Snorkels for everyone!

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