Monday, March 19, 2012

Where I Am

I really hit rock bottom this weekend.

I have been "trying" so many different things/plans/ways and it is giving me a headache, literally. I woke up with a massive migraine complete with nausea, light sensitivity and one eye seeing things differently than the other eye this morning. It has taken me four hours, a breakfast, 2 cups of coffee, a Tylenol and an aspirin to be functional enough to write this but I am still about half headachey so bear with me here. I want to say some things because I feel like I am at a turning point. Yeah, I have felt like that before and ended up back in the pit a couple of days or weeks later, but enough is enough already with the plans and I just have to take this an hour at a time and turn this around. I need to build some momentum to get back to where I was in October 2010.

It's been almost a year and a half since I hit 175 pounds which was 103 pounds lost. I felt AMAZING. My quality of life was beyond anything I had hoped for. Looking back now on those blog entries, I see how my quality of life has crumbled by regaining 40 pounds since then. I want it back. I want that life back!! I got mad enough this weekend... mad at myself... to force myself into some uncomfortable changes. I struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder and "forcing myself" to do things over the winter is practically impossible. But now, spring is coming and there is more daylight and sunshine and I think this is the best time for me to get going again.

Where I am today:
I weigh 215 pounds. I am down to ONE pair of jeans that *barely* fits; they are size 16 and they nearly cut me in half when freshly washed and buttoned. I have to wash them every couple of days and while they're washing I have to wear the ONE pair of fuzzy grey sweatpants that still fit me. I feel like a frump! Ugh. I really do.
Medical issues that had disappeared completely at 175 pounds are back. I have acid reflux, am back to taking Tums most nights so I can sleep and propping up on a pillow in bed. My joint pain returned (knees, hips, feet, hands, shoulders) and is bad enough that it prevents me from being as active as I'd like. I no longer swing on the swings with my daughter, and when I took her skating the last few times, I didn't skate. I just watched. It SUCKS!! I also have had some heart palpitations coming back. More headaches, more fatigue, worse mood, and far less energy and motivation. Frankly I do not want to do ANYTHING.
It hurts to carry groceries in to the house. It hurts to carry laundry baskets up and down the stairs. Heck, it even hurts to get dressed. The pain in my shoulders is horrible. And I have plantar fasciitis again.
I think I look like crap, too. Obviously very few of my clothes fit me right, as I got rid of all my fat clothes when I was 175 pounds. Ninety percent of my wardrobe is too small and too tight. I have nothing, ZERO, to wear when the weather gets warmer.

What I am doing about it:
I have to focus on action. Minute by minute, I am forcing myself to get up and move. I am not even worrying about formal exercise right now, because over the winter I have become SUCH a slug, very sedentary whenever I am not doing things I *have* to do. So now, I am simply MAKING myself get up and do stuff. Clean, do yard work, play with the dog, DO things. I am making myself get outside in the sunshine. This week I am also making myself do ALL of my physical therapy exercises on Monday-Wednesday-Friday. That will be happening from now on. I NEED to build my strength back to have the quality of life I desire. I am also walking the dog every day and want to build up to 2 miles a day... maybe more eventually. Right now my feet hurt SO BAD after a walk that I am almost limping. Yeah, it sucks.

As for the food, I am so SICK of measuring and counting and planning right now. This week my focus is to eat regular, healthy, real food meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner and knock it off with the grazing all day. If and ONLY if I am TRULY feeling hunger between meals, I will let myself have a Medifast meal. No other choices. All of them are around 100 calories and have plenty of protein in them, so they should fill that NEED if there is truly a need and not a *want to eat* thing going on. After all, I never crave Medifast meals, so if I am willing to have one between meals then it will be likely to be actual hunger. Sort of like this:

me: Wow it's been 2 hours since lunch and I am really hungry!
myself: Oh! Okay, have a Medifast bar.
me: uh, well, I was thinking more along the lines of a latte and a scone.
myself: No, if you're hungry have a Medifast bar.
me: um, hey! How about a handful of almonds and a few chocolate chips! that would be good!
myself: nah, if you're hungry, have a Medifast bar!
me: that doesn't really sound good.
myself: I guess you're not hungry then!

Reminds me of talking to a 4-year-old, actually...

Anyway, the rule is no eating between meals or after dinner except for a Medifast meal if I am really hungry. I think this is a good use of the meals I have remaining. I do plan to fix reasonably healthy meals for the family but right now I need to use up things we have in the freezer (like tonight's beef short ribs), so they may be higher fat or carb than ideal. I am going to always limit myself to one serving of *whatever* and then fill up the rest of the plate with salad or steamed vegetables.

We'll see how this goes and reassess at the end of the week.

*FTC-required disclosure: Medifast provided me with its products for my personal use for free. I am not paid or compensated in any other way for mentioning their products.*


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a good plan. I hope you find your way to get rid of the extra weight if that is what you want to. I am not wondering that you are sick of different diet plans etc. Sounds to me you have been doing them for years. I couln't have done it.

Anonymous said...

You said it yourself...hang in there, never never never give up. Take each day at a time, do what you can. Be blessed and at peace.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lyn:
I've been reading for years, commenting rarely, feeling sad with you the last few weeks. I know what it's like to feel you are failing; that things are spiraling back out of control and you don't know what to do. Been there myself, many times.

It's admirable that you won't give up. The "only medfast" for snacks sounds like it can work for you. Try to be kind to your four-year-old self.


Anonymous said...

Good for you Lyn!

Greta @ Staying Lost said...

Lyn, I'm so glad to hear that you aren't giving up. I hope that what you are trying now will help you lose the weight, and will also give you the peace of mind you seem to be looking for.

PaulaMP said...

I'm sorry you are in so much physical pain ... Hang in there

Anonymous said...

Hang in there! I'm at the same "sick of everything" level you are. I've tried every diet out there. My weight hasn't moved one pound in over 3 years.

Don't be too tough on yourself. Just do what you can.

Sending hugs!

AprilA said...

I'm so glad to read you're taking time for yourself to enjoy the sun on your skin. Don't under-estimate the power of that! :)
Wishing you a happier Springtime Lyn, and, in due course... progress again on the weight-front.
Be kind to yourself #1.

Anonymous said...

I understand (partly) about being seing of all it takes to lose weight--all the numbers, planning aheard, frustrations, etc. However, if this is what TRULY HELPS YOU, then i think you have to stick it out and do it. No one really "likes" to study, especially for a subject that's not a favorite, but generally people do it anyways because it is necessary for success. I don't always love taking long walks in the summer when it's unbearably humid and sticky but I do it anyways because I know staying active helps me keep my weight down and is good for my well-being in general. We all have to do things we don't like.

I see trouble whenever you talk about how you are just "so sick" of things and want to simplify, do it your own way. To be blunt, if you could handle doing things "your own way" you wouldn't be in this boat to begin with, right?

I think once you master counting calories/finding a weight "zone" that you are happy and healthy in THEN maybe you can let it slide a little. After maintaining a weight loss for years and kind of finding your groove, then you just kind of know the amount of food you can handle. But you can't just stop when you are still in the midst of losing and feeling off.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Lyn, I really enjoy your blog. Your idea of getting up and doing things, being in the sunshine = GREAT. The food approach seems sensible, as well. Managing weight just DOES take planning, effort, cooking, exercise, etc. You aren't alone, many of us are out here doing the same things: self-care! We see the scale go up, recommit to monitoring ourselves, getting lots of fruit and veg, managing our thoughts, etc (I am a Weight Watcher!) -Lydia

beerab said...

I feel your pain, but you did it once, and you CAN do it again- I know you can!

I am also frustrated with myself for getting all the way down to 196 and then today being at 200 after a bad week last week, why is it SO darn easy to gain?! GR!!!

Princess Dieter said...

Lyn, please get at least 2 pair of "stretchier" pants that fit. Pants that will take you through 15+ pounds of loss. You need clothes that fit. Skirt or slacks or dress and jeans or yoga pants and skirt or whatever combo. THE REALITY is that your clothes do not fit and you feel horrible in them. At the very least, you can feel comfort while losing as you may need to (slowly, carefully, with balanced food intake).

Trying to wear pants that cut you "in half" is only going to make reflux WORSE.

You may think these tight clothes will be motivation. Um, no. They simply will make for new health issues (too tight pants can lead to neural damage in the groin and yeast infections).

So, please, while you figure out what you need to do to get a handle on food/calories/etc, get a couple of outfits that really fit WELL RIGHT NOW. K?

Hugs, babe...

Anonymous said...

*I understand (partly) about being SICK of all it takes.

Tara said...

I just want you to know that I am rooting for you! You can do it!

Anonymous said...

I agree with Princess D -- those tight jeans probably aren't good for reflux! You deserve clothes that fit and feel comfortable, and you deserve them at your current weight. You don't need to buy a whole wardrobe or feel like you're giving up, but wearing clothes that just make you feel worse isn't helping. A couple of pairs of pants that don't make you feel awful can only put you in a better place mentally, right?

Anonymous said...

I’ve been (unsuccessfully) on the weight loss merry-go-round for years and I’m still churning away too. I read a blog post somewhere recently in which the author said (I paraphrase) that she didn’t get fat overnight and she can’t get fit overnight either. It’s not easy, but it’s so worth it.

Everyone’s different, but one of my major problems has been lack of satiety. I never used to feel full. I’ve been following the primal lifestyle lately and incorporating much more healthy fat (avocado oil, avocados, some nuts, coconut) and I finally feel full before I’ve finished my meal. It’s such a motivating discovery! While you’re focusing on those minute by minute actions, I encourage you to find those daily successes too.

I also wanted to ask if you’re sure that the soy in the Medifast meals are ok for you. After a months with Nutrisystem and then trying Weight Watchers (supplemented by soy to make my points go further), I found that my body does not handle soy well AT ALL. I felt more depressed, lethargic, and achy than ever before. Eliminating soy was a blessing for me, but I know everyone’s different.

Megan said...

Hi Lyn, I like your idea of limiting yourself to a Medifast snack if you're hungry. I'm doing a similar thing myself, but with boiled eggs. I keep them in the fridge all the time and if I'm hungry between meals, that's my snack. I like boiled eggs, but I don't *love* them, so I'll only eat it if I'm truly hungry, not just in the mood for eating.

Good luck with the new plan, I'm sure you'll find your mojo again soon :)

Ron from NJ said...

So many others have said it but I want to echo things. It is great that you aren't giving up. It is great that you are trying something...anything to try to get things going for yourself. Keep going. We are all behind you and hoping for you.

Diana said...

As usual, we're on the same page again. I could have written several of your recent posts.

I'm so tired of the battle. It never seems to end. I'm tired of being tired. I too am on an upward spiral with the weight. Every day I wake up and think "what happened?!". How, why did I let this happen to me.

I sure don't have the answer. I can only tell you I understand 100% what you're going through. I'm going through it too.

I'm like you though, Spring is my season. I'm hoping for a turnaround soon, for both of us. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Lyn.

I've read your blog everyday for the past 2.5 years. I feel a connection to your journey. I don't have a struggle with my weight, but I do struggle everyday with food and numbers. I have been a type one diabetic since I was eight years old. I know what it feels like to have to account for everything you eat. I know what it feels like to feel like your success hinges on a number. (For me its my HbA1c.) I know what it feels like to feel guilty when you eat something you shouldn't. So even though, looking at me, you would never know all the "food" issues I have, I get it.

I think sometimes "having" to think about everything you put in your mouth is just to much. It's exhausting. It creates this relationship with food that is just overwhelming. It takes all the joy out of eating. And we need to eat! I know your exhausated too. Hang in there!

I wish you the best. Thanks for "being there" for all of us!


Kristi said...

Your plan sounds great. It sounds a lot like Intuitive or Mindful Eating. Wait until you are hungry, eat until you're satisfied. I hope you can start feeling better soon.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a good plan! Be careful not weighing, but i mean you know yourself what a reasonable portion of carbs / protein is, and its not as important with veggies.

I was once told that if i felt like having a snack - have 2 glasses of water and an apple / orange / banana and see if you want anything else. Normally i dont even bother with the fruit as i've basically just been thirsty.

I'm glad to see you are back on track this week :)


Diandra said...

This sounds like a good enough plan to me. And once you are done with your Medfast meals, there are lots of 100kcal options for snacking... my favorite: 100g mixed berries and 100g low-fat yogurt. ^^ I am sure now that the weather is improving, your mood will as well, and your energy will return.

Claire said...

Stop beating yourself up Lyn. It's not good for you and won't help you lose weight. You'll punish yourself by overeating. Love your body, cherish it and you'll find both diet and exercise much easier. Like you, your body deserves some love x

Julia Stambor said...

So, you´re back up forty pounds. That´s the bad news. The good news is that you have managed to lose these before, so you definitely can do it again. It has happened to me, too, and from my experience I can give one simple advice: remember what you were doing when you first lost those pounds. It was obviously working for you. Resolve to do it again. At first, for a specified amount of time, say, one month. Do it one day at a time. You know you can. And- as annoying as that may be- record what you eat. Every bite. It´s all too easy to slip back to eating things that aren´t good for us and not notice because hey, it´s just a bite, or one slice. If you want to wean yourself off the medifast products in the long run, you have to know how your body reacts to the "real" foods you put into it, and that will mean experimenting, which translates to weighing (yourself and your food), note-taking and measuring. Having setbacks during that kind of experimentation is something one must expect. The important thing is identifying what went wrong, and stop doing/eating it. The sooner the better. (Look who´s talking- it has taken me two periods of massive regains and as many plateaus to find out I shouldn´t eat bread and potatoes).
You´re right about not really trusting other people´s diet plans- every body is unique, and everybody who wants to lose weight and keep it off must find out what his or her unique body can or cannot tolerate food-wise.
I wish you the best of luck getting re-started! And yes, it´s better to accept What Is and do it in fitting pants:).

Susannah said...

Hi Lyn,

I am positive you will find your own unique path to wellness and health. You are very smart, very strong and very focused.
One thought I have had about Medifast since you started it. I had not known anything about the program before and, as we all do, processed your posts with my own perspective in mind.
As a sugar addict myself (and as a former nicotine addict I know exactly what addiction feels like physically and mentally! "Cutting down on smoking" (which never ever worked) felt 100% like "cutting down in sugar". And it never worked either.) Sugar free is good for me. I do not "moderate" sugar.
Anyway, one of the first thoughts I had about Medifast and the brownies, shakes, crisps etc. was that these "foods", although sugar free and perhaps high in protein, would only feed my beast.
And I have learned that eating throughout the day also feeds my beast.
Just my two cents, but perhaps this is one of the reasons it has been so challenging for you to move away from the Medifast plan.
Good luck with all aspects, Lyn. You have many supporters!

Kimberly said...


I think I could have written part of your post! I reached my lowest in a long time with you in Oct. 2010 - 185. I felt GREAT! Then... medical issues, gained weight, and it got out of control again.

Feb. 22nd the scale said 215 for me. I felt AWFUL. I am now at 204. It is going slowly, but I am committed and the weather is helping me also! Got out and rode my bike with my 6 year old daughter last night and it felt great! We CAN do this!

Thanks for sharing with all of us - you have a lot of people that relate all too well with your struggle.


Teresa said...

My personal opinion is that the weight loss and your happiness was a warm blanket to cover over other things that have never gone away or been dealt with. When you're thin you are happy.... When you're not thin you don't have that positive thing to focus on and the deeper issues are closer to the surface. Feel free to say " not even close!" I still think therapy is a very good option...... Are you single with your children or are you married? It might make a difference to assess your relationship if you are married. Best of luck to you Lyn.

Anonymous said...

I have nothing today, Lyn, except that as always, I hope you find something that will work for you and one of my favorite quotes,
by William Blake:"You never know what is enough until you know what is more than enough."


Anonymous said...

I so know where you are coming from! I just read a book that is full of info. It really made sense to me. I know you love to learn new things. Maybe this book will help. "Food Addiction, The Body Knows" by Kay Sheppard. It is an old book. I got it on amazon for a penny plus shipping. I wish you the best.

Becca said...

Leave the Medifast bars alone! How about when your body says it's hungry you give it some water and a good protein/complex carb snack. Like an apple and natural peanut butter. I'm tellin' ya, you need to let the free diet food go! (I know, I've been there), and the artificial sweetners... sugar free oreos are just as bad for your body as the real deal. Don't kid yourself.

I've struggled this year too by gaining back almost all of the weight I lost last fall on Medifast. It doesn't work long term!...leave that junk alone!

How did you lose your weight in the very beginning??...

I wish you luck Lyn...we all want to see each other succeed in this fight. I hope you are able to gain control again soon, and find a healthy way to lose the weight again. And I agree with the do need a couple pair of pants that fit you now, though don't get so comfortable in them you give up.

Anonymous said...


i have been reading for a while now. i would like to encourage you to check out the following website. you may not think it applies to you, but since you were basically starving your body, i believe in some ways it does, and why you always find yourself weighing so much more after eating "off-plan." the link i am leaving has some useful info on it for anyone that has been trying to lose weight, but you might want to check out the whole website.

even if you feel it doesn't apply to you, it is an interesting read.

good luck, i know how it feels to have a difficult relationship with food.


Redfizz said...

Wow. Thank you for being so honest. I know exactly how you feel. :(

You are such an inspiration! Stay well and keep going!

Steelers6 said...

Hi, friend. My son is eating very few carbs right now, & no longer seems to have the heartburn/reflux thing. Seems it was caused by carbs. ? Just thought I would pass that on, since you were eating low carb/high protein and did not have that problem then. Maybe too many carbs have found their way into your menu?? I don't know, it was just a thought.

Wishing you the best,

Another Step Forward said...


I just came across your blog today. I am a SAHM of four kiddos under 10 years old. I have been sturggling with obesity most of my married life, especially since having children. I lost a lot of weight - from about 250 to 180 - after baby# 2, but added it all and more while pregnant with baby# 3.

I have been trying recently to unzip this fat suit and step into the life I want, be the mom I want my children to remember.

I was inspired when I first found your blog to see your before and after pictures. Thank you for being open about the struggle to maintain it! Thank you for not disappearing! Your openess reminds me that it isn't just about taking the pounds off, that I need to be restructuring my life to aid myself in being able to keep it off once I get there. Thank you!