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Tipping the Scales

Tipping the Scales

This has been another hard month. Part of it is psychological, I’ve spent most of the last 7 years in the 180’s, always seeming to lose and then regain the same 10 pounds. The other part of is that I don’t look as heavy as I actually am. Most people usually peg me at 30-40 pounds below my actual weight, so its hard for me to actually see any changes.

But I lost a total of 3.6 pounds this month.  I am one pound away from my second weight loss goal of 20 pounds. And when that happens, I can wave happily good-bye to those pesky 180’s.  Hopefully forever.

I’m pleased with the fact that I’m continuing to lose weight. I really do know that my body doesn’t do well with grains or starches.  How do I know that?  Well a few weeks ago, I wasn’t feeling well at all.  My stomach was giving me a lot of trouble.  It wasn’t a gluten episode, luckily. But it put me back a few days.  I finally gave in and made some rice.  Steamed white rice with butter is a comfort food for me.  Bland, somewhat fatty with the butter, it helped soothe my stomach better than anything would.  And it worked. I started feeling better a few hours later.  But that cup of rice sure showed up on the scale the next morning.  I was up 3 pounds.

Carbohydrates and starches tend to make me retain water.  A friend of mine tells me that ketogenic diets make you lose water, but really, how one looks at it is simply which side of the coin you are staring at.  For me, I prefer to think that I retain water on carbs.  And that is what happened, so it’s not like I gained 3 pounds of fat.  It is the reason that most people who go on ketogenic diets lose large amounts of weight the first few weeks, their bodies are giving up the water.  The harder (and slower) weight loss comes from just sticking to it.

I did have an interesting situation occur though which helps me to keep on.  I had a dentist visit the other day.  For whatever reasons, I’ve had such heavy plaque and tartar on my teeth that I have to go in (and pay for) an extra cleaning a year.  The last time I visited the dentist was a few days into the milk cure.  I remember waking up the day after the dental visit to my white tongue and being grateful it hadn’t happened before.

Both the hygenist and I noticed that my teeth were much easier to clean.  She was able to do it more quickly and I experienced much less discomfort then I normally do.  The only change in any of my habits has been my dietary habits and the restriction of grains and starches.  So I can attribute better teeth health to this ketogenic way of eating.

I really haven’t been able to hit the gym as much as I thought I would.  I’m still going, but sporadically.  I’ve changed projects and while I’m working from home which would seem to make it easier. It hasn’t.  I’m heads down in code analysis, which I really love to do, but I forget to come up for things like food, workouts, etc.  About the only thing that hasn’t stopped is my food preservation.

August 2012 Measurements

Measurement Starting Current Difference
Weight 200 lbs 181.0 lbs -19.00 lbs
Chest 39.00″ 37.50 -1.50″
Waist 36.50″ 32.50 -4.00″
Stomach 43.00″ 34.50 -8.50″
Hips 45.00″ 40.50 -4.50″
Thighs 25.25″ 22.50 -2.75″
Biceps 15.50″ 14.50 -1.00″

My measurements are slowly creeping downwards.  My waist, hips, thighs and biceps are at their lowest level.  But its small measurements.  Looking at myself in a mirror is still discouraging, but I think we all tend to focus on our negatives and not our positives.  I know I am. Still, I fit into a few more pairs of shorts without feeling as if I was about to burst out of them.  So yes, I’m making progress.  But I’d love for it to be faster and more dramatic.

Of course I know that fast weight loss does not equal sustainable weight loss.  I know that my slow drop will be better for me in the long run.  So I’m continuing to do what I am doing.  I’ve up’d my carb count a bit and am regularly coming in at between 25 and 30 net carbohydrates a day.  I’m happy at this level, I don’t feel deprived.  I even allow myself the occasional hard cider (very rare) or vodka martini.  Part of this is allowing me to live as a way of eating so that I don’t simply chuck the whole thing when I’ve hit my goal so that the weight comes back in.

I’m hopeful I can hit my 20 pound weight loss by this time next month.  If I do, it’s going to be a cause for much celebration.  At this point I am 41 pounds away from my goal.  I’m almost 1/3 of the way there.

If you are working on getting healthier, let me know what’s working for you in the comments.

Fitness Report Series


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