Friday, April 6, 2012

The Trip, The Eating, The Pain and The Hope

I'm back! Our trip went very well, and I am happy to say that after 16 years of driving almost 3 hours away to a specialist for my son every 6 to 12 months, they are 95% sure he will NOT have to go back again!! We are so excited. Sixteen years of trips. And now we're done!

We have a routine of park picnics, visiting the playground and carousels, and getting ice cream when we go to this specialist... sort of making it a nice day out. The last few times, we also brought our puppy and we love to visit dog parks whenever we travel. So that's what we did this time, too; we were gone from home a total of 13 hours and spent much of that time outside walking, exploring, and playing. I'd estimate we walked at least 3 miles.

My eating was okay but not ideal.

Brunch was one scrambled egg, one piece of bacon, one sausage link, a small dish of fresh strawberries, and one pecan waffle. Lots of water to drink.

Dinner was a Reuben sandwich on rye toast (not grilled/greasy) and I had an epiphany while eating it. I've talked about how much I crave and love Reuben sandwiches ever since my father died; it was his favorite sandwich. I don't eat them very often because I see them as a special treat. Since I only ate two meals yesterday I figured the calories would be okay. It was your usual pastrami, Swiss, and sauerkraut on rye. I had taken about 3 bites when I suddenly thought, "I don't like Reubens." It was very strange. I remember as a child, my Dad would eat them often and anytime I tried a bite I didn't like it at all. Only after his death did they become "delicious" to me. I felt close to him whenever I ate them. They become a comfort food for me. It's been like that for more than 20 years now. But yesterday, instead of sliding into a nostalgic trance when I was eating it, I actually paid attention to the texture and flavor. I remembered that I do not really enjoy the flavor of rye bread that much. I recalled how I have never liked pastrami. I realized that sauerkraut is on my "okay" list but nothing I'd seek out too often. And suddenly, the thought came, "I don't even like Reubens. I don't think I ever have." Of course I was quite hungry at this point, so I sort of picked around at it and ate about 3/4 of it, but I don't want to ever have one again. I think all this time I was just sort of fixated on the Thousand Island dressing flavor that reminded me of the Big Macs I used to love, and focused on the connection with my father and the memories of my childhood. I never even noticed that I really *don't* like the sandwich, just as I didn't as a child. And not liking that sandwich is in no way a rejection of my father.

The other things I ate yesterday were:
a sugar free cookie dough latte on the drive up
a small ice cream cone after our appointment (didn't eat the cone part)
and some fresh strawberries when we got home

My whole body hurts from the walking. It is a lot harder to be active at this weight than it was around 180 pounds. It used to be effortless. Now it just hurts. But I am pushing through it, still doing everything I need to do. Since I didn't bike yesterday, that will be my biking 'day off' for the week. I will bike today but not walk, as my feet need a rest. My plantar fasciitis has come back with a vengeance and is very painful. Hopefully getting the weight off will make it go away again as it did the first time. Although I won't kid you, I have a deep fear that even with this increase in exercise and decrease in calories I will somehow not lose weight or will keep gaining. Life at this weight is not fun. I don't know how anyone can tell me to accept this weight. I won't, because I do not want to live in pain all the time. It is downright painful to be active at this weight for me. I won't accept it, and I will keep working through it to get to a more comfortable weight. It amazes me, sometimes, that I was able to stay at 278 pounds for a very long time and eating thousands and thousands of calories per day without gaining. I was binge eating so much. I was eating at LEAST 3500-4000 calories most days and upwards of 7000 on bad days and was as sedentary as you can get without being dead, and yet I did not gain. And here I am eating under 2000 calories a day... usually closer to 1500... doing all this moving, and the scale sits still. Well, we'll see what it says on Sunday, anyway. I just keep telling myself to eat for health, move for strength, and the rest will follow. But my body does hurt, and I am just going on faith that the weight will come off. It will, it has to.


Jeanette said...

No one expects you to feel okay that the weight at which you feel uncomfortable (or at least I hope they don't!).

Even if you aren't seeing losses, keep trying, eat good foods, normal portions and never stop moving! These things can be nothing but good for you!

Diandra said...

The weight will come off, it is a matter of science. You cannot eat well and be active and at the same time not lose weight - where would the energy come from? You know this is just in your head. (We all have these days.) At 278lbs, your body needed much more energy to even remain alive (you've most likely read about this thing called "basal metabolic rate").

PaulaMP said...

This is not giving me a good feeling about a Medifast type diet ... The weight coming on with a vengeance and now not budging?

Lyn said...


To be fair, when I hit 175 pounds on Medifast I should have either stayed on it strictly until goal and then transitioned off, or should have transitioned off then to maintain or do something else (whole foods or whatever). It's not meant to go on-off-on-off like I did for two years. I have talked to plenty of people who did Medifast correctly and have kept the weight off for years, so I can't blame that plan when done correctly.

LHA said...

Lyn, I am rooting for you! I do actually think that going off of Medifast or a similar diet makes it much easier to regain weight and harder to lose it on a less restrictive diet. I am just basing this on my own experiences of decades of different diets, although I have not tried Medifast. I don't understand the science of this, but it has happened to me every time I restrict certain foods or food groups too much.

That said, you can still lose weight! It may be a little harder for a while (I know it already has) but you can do this. I admire your persistence and that is what will see you through.

Holly from 300 Pounds Down said...

Hang in there!! I know you can do it!

timothy said...

love a good epiphany! and you know the pain will fade as you move down the scale. you're doin great just keep it up and that's wonderful about your son no longer needing the specialist! xoxoxo

Taryl said...

Amen to your son not needing that specialist anymore! What excellent news.

And your epiphany made me smile - how cn you not be making real mental progress, even when the physical is slow, when you're actively extricating yor emotions and memories from food? That is what will help you maintain for life, the rest is just weight. I agree it needs to come off for your health, but this emotional and psychological growth is so crucial, too. Don't sell yourself short just because the diet hasn't hit the sweet spot, yet.

And I still think the "Perfect Health Diet" is just what the doctor ordered for you, but I'm only saying that because I'm such a believer, reading through it ;)

Have a sweet, blessed Resurrection Sunday, Lyn!

MargieAnne said...

You know you're going to do this Medifast or no Medifast.

The scales have to respond sooner or later. It's so hard waiting for the expected weight loss. I encourage you to remain persistent as you've done in the past.

You really are strong enough to manage this change.


PaulaMP said...

I believe what you are saying about others, but I still think this type of eating is partially to blame, it's not all "you"

Lyn said...


I was reading some articles and there are studies about this, that say if anyone loses a large amount of weight by calorie restriction (even 1200 cal/day) it changes the hormone production in the body so that when a person goes back to regular eating, they have more true hunger and gain weight more rapidly than before. The studies I read say this altered hormone state persisted even a year after weight loss. Interesting.

LHA said...

Lyn, thanks for that information on the reason for weight gain after dieting. My nutritionist did tell me about a study that showed that the group of people most likely to gain weight in any 30 day period were people who had recently been dieting! For ALL of us who are fighting this battle, that is a cautionary tale. The trick is not to gain or to keep the gain to a minimum when you do start to eat just to "maintain" your weight. I am working on that also and so appreciate all the comments and your posts that deal with that issue.

PaulaMP said...

oh great ... well that's depressing. Sheesh.

Karen said...

Yes. That's right. If you loose weight and go back to the Standard American Diet (SAD) you are likely to gain weight.

There are those who loose weight and gain it back- WW, Medifast, gastric banding, OA, etc.

There are also those who keep it off, but those folks don't go back to the SAD they had before. The jounior and senior maintainers all made mental transformations and decisions to permanently change- eating, exercise, what we tell ourselves, etc. if one thing stops working, then the maintainers find a new tool or activity. Since life changes- age, menopause, activity level, it becomes a dynamic process. No excuses, just trying something new until finding what works.

Good luck and I'd be curious to see if your pain decreases 2 weeks after excluding wheat and grain. if you choose. Might be an interesting experiment.

Congrats on not having to go back to the doc for your son. Must be a relief. Karen P

donner said...

yes, the article is in the NY Times sand it talks about when losing weight how difficult it is to keep it off. Sure, the food choices must change, but your body is sending out chemical charges that make you want to eat and over eat. Its not to say you can't lose weight and keep it off - its to say that it helps to know its not all in your head and emotional. There is real science at work here causing you to crave foods.

beerab said...

*hugs* that's wonderful news for you and your son :)

I can't stand Reuben's at all, hubby loves them, but I can definitely understand connecting them with your father.

Whatever you do, don't give up, you got down to the 180s, I know you can do it again. I'm back down to 195 and I'm so happy, I let myself slip back up to 208 and now that I'm back below 200 I've vowed to never let it happen again.

I'm still cheering you on :)

Anonymous said...

Lyn, that is wonderful news about your son's prognosis! I am so glad for all of you. The relief of knowing you will no longer have to wait for feedback on these trips must be tremendous!

As for the connection with your dad, I remember reading that you also spent some wonderful, non- eating time with him. Perhaps a favorite song that you enjoyed together may replace a food item that you do not even like, as your connection to him. I'll bet he would have liked to know that one of his favorite foods is not a culprit in keeping you from being as healthy as you can be. He loved you and cared for you so and I think he would have been delighted to know that his daughter is feeling light and pain free in every sense of the word!
Happy Easter! May your heart be free of joy during this season of renewal!

Anonymous said...

Hoooooooooooly cow, that was supposed to be FULL of joy! I started to write "free of pain" and changed my mind. When, oh when will I learn to edit BEFORE I click "publish your comment" . Good lord, all I can hope is that you know me well enough to guess what I meant!

Lyn said...


yes, I knew what you meant! Your spirit shines through even when there is a typo :) Thanks and much joy to you as well!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your sweet and gentle comment Lyn! We had a power outage and I was torturing myself a bit, though I was relatively certain that my intended wishes came through to you. The joy in my days exists, to a great extent, thanks to you! You have brought me liberation from a life of binges.
The best of everything to you and your darling family,

Steelers6 said...

Very interesting enlightenment you had about Reubens!

I do occasionally eat them with turkey breast instead of corned beef or something. And opened face to save me that one pc of bread.

Hurray for your son's progress!


Amy said...

Maybe it is time to use the measuring tape as your go-to tool, it is a much more reliable tool for the health changes you are looking for. You are probably gaining muscle from all the extra movement you are doing. The scale can be so deceptive! Keep up the good work Lyn! I love your determination!