Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Remembering Being "Thinner"

So as I said before... hellish nightmare. That's what it feels like.

I was sitting here the other night remembering how it used to be... how at first I was so excited and dedicated and worked and fought to lose weight. I remember how, the first time down the hell scale, it was so liberating and wondrous as the pounds fell off. Every ten pounds was a whole new level of freedom. I was thinking about back when I finally got to a point when mopping was easier, raking leaves was fun, and I actually *enjoyed* breaking a sweat for housecleaning and yardwork. I remember blogging about what a wonderful new world that was and how grateful I was to have lost enough weight to experience it.

Yesterday I went back to the beginning of my blog and started reading. I read through the initial thrill of losing weight simply by walking 2 blocks here and there, cutting back on junk, bingeing only a few times a month, and eating more produce from the Farmer's Market. I remembered how I dropped those first pounds gleefully, and as I read I searched for that post I wrote when I first felt free of the "fat prison"... that memorable day when I mopped my floors *and liked it* because it felt good, I had energy, and it wasn't hard anymore. I will never forget that day; the memory of the feeling of exhilaration and triumph is so vivid. I miss that feeling; I want to get there again. I was reading along and thinking to myself "I wish I could get to that weight again, where I felt so light and healthy and energetic. I want to be able to mop my floors without being out of breath." Well, I found it. I found that time where I posted about feeling that way. And do you know what I weighed on that day? On the day I felt so light and free and energized, I weighed 236 pounds... only four pounds lighter than I am now.

And I thought... what the heck??? I don't remember being THIS BIG when I felt that way! I was so light... so happy! I moved without hindrance. I remember it! I couldn't have been this heavy. I feel so sluggish and huge now! But I was. I had lost 42 pounds and I felt amazing. Yet here I am at almost that same weight and I feel like a total whale. Mopping is exhausting! I don't like it at all. How can that be?

Well, back then I was exercising regularly. I think that is the biggest difference in how I felt versus how I feel now: not the weight, but the fitness. At that time I was biking 20 minutes 3-4 days a week and had just started strength training 20 minutes 3 times a week. Oh, and it was spring, and I was six years younger, which could have some effect too. But it amazes me that I felt so great at this weight on the way down, and feel so crappy on the way back up. It is hard to go up stairs, hard to mop or clean or rake, hard to walk far. I get out of breath and my joints and feet start to ache. I have zero stamina and feel sluggish most of the time. But at least I know that it isn't directly because of what I weigh.

I'm trying to recreate the energy I had back then, although I don't know if that's possible with the depression and the winter approaching. I don't know if the hormonal whackiness of my mid-forties will play a role in how I feel either. I have health issues now that I did not have then. But I am trying, I am working at it. I have cut the processed foods back out, and I am increasing my activity. I got on my bike the other day and made it for 12 minutes; I'll be getting back on today as soon as I'm done blogging. I'm shooting for 3 or 4 times a week, working up to 20 minutes each time. And I have to believe that I'll be able to bike right back out of this hellish nightmare.


Anonymous said...

One reason it felt easier at 236 than it does now is that you had been used to carrying 40 pounds more--and had the muscles & stamina from that highest weight effort. Now, after your foot pain enforced inactivity, you lost that muscle strength heaving all of that fat around gave you and your lighter weight wasn't sufficient to maintain it, either.

Just a thought.

That, and if you recall my previous comment about my own reality check--I am as large now at 217 as I was at 252. the measurements prove it.

And so it goes.


Anonymous said...

where ever you go, or weigh, there you are. this issue is never fixed, it is managed life long. there is never a "break". Depressing? Maybe, but its NOT cancer, its NOT diabetes, yet. It is manageable and there are lots of people who have to deal with it everyday. There is a wealth of info out there and i am confident that you will find a solution. I have found OA.

LHA said...

All of your insights were good, and I think another reason you don't feel exhilarated now is that you don't have the pride and excitement of recent weight loss. Instead you have the disappointment and feelings of failure that go along with regaining weight, and that is a significant drag on energy. I think your idea of getting back to exercise and getting into better shape is a really good one. Taking the first step is always the hardest, so good luck!

Anonymous said...

The aerobic exercise, done consistently, will, more and more over time, aid -greatly- in rehabbing musculature and mitochondria, those little energy factories.

I'm certain you will be grateful to have keep up with it, especially as hormones change in upcoming phases in life.

It really is incredible that you found that post, and found the weight to be so close to where you are now, back then. The changes in body composition have been very significant.

Best to you and to your seasons to come of improving strength, stamina, and energy! :)

CARLA said...

so much love your way
I get this RIGHT NOW
here not weight but simply happiness.

Connie C. said...

I agree with LHA. The excitement of losing weight snowballs, and that momentum keeps you going.

I think exercising regularly again is a good idea. Control what you can while you work on the things you struggle with, like overeating.

Lynne said...

You can do ANYTHING for 20 minutes - Don't work up to it...just do it. Even if you go slow, set the timer and DO IT In fact, why don't your set it for 30 and make it a goal? You know that if someone was going to hurt one of your kids you could chase them down - no doubt... Well this fat is hurting them. Your depression is hurting them. So don't sit there thinking and hoping - DO SOMETHING!!!! You'll feel better immediately - I PROMISE!!!

Susan said...

Lyn...seriously check thr condition of your adrenals.. you have had a lot of stress and that directly affects the adrenals..you have classic symptims and you want to take cae or this earlier than later..check your levels 24 hr saliva test. You can do orca natural dr.. exercise will further complicate matters if they are not in good shape. Please.
medical professionals dont look at this until it is to late. I know...took 8 months to diagnose me..oy came after several traumatic events in my life and right on the heels of an injury to my leg.. I was being treated for sinus infections which I don't have a history of then chemical sensitivity and asthma..abd thyroid. .none of which I had issues with. When cortisol levels are to low you naturally become depressed and unmotivated. ..its the adrenals not you and exercise further depletes adrenals
please check it out to rule it out.

Lyn said...

Thanks so much all. I did 12 minutes on the bike and will get on it again today.


I really do have to work up to it, just as I did when I started the blog. I have a history of messed up knees and feet. I go until I start to feel a twinge of soreness in my feet or knees and then I stop. The last thing I need right now is an injury. My mind and the rest of my body is willing but I've learned from 2 years of physical therapy to listen to my body. No rush, I am biking and that's a good start. The longer times will come.


I mentioned adrenals to my endocrinologist and he kind of brushed me off. I'm not sure why but it seems like it is more of an alternative medicine thing, so I haven't found anyone to test this. I will ask my primary care doctor about it. Thanks.

Lori said...

Wow. That is very eye opening. There are a lot of reasons for this. Some you mentioned, and others commentors have mentioned. Some physical to be sure, but others emotional.

The overwhelming feeling I got, was thankfulness that you found out. Now you can get to work on determining the reason and working on it.

Anonymous said...

Hey, that's great you realized exercise was the missing element! Exercise is good for everyone, overweight, obese, normal weight, underweight, EVERYONE, it's something that makes us all feel better.

BUT! That said. I totally agree with Susan re: adrenal fatigue and am so glad another person brought this up! I recently started seeing a nutritionist and got testing done and it turns out I have adrenal fatigue. As a result, I've been researching it, and definitely as I read your post, it almost screamed out all the symptoms of adrenal fatigue I've been reading about. Try a nutritionist if your Dr won't pay attention (or try a different Dr). Good luck! Feel better! And congrats on getting back on the bike. :)
Hugs, Wendy

Lyn said...

re: adrenal fatigue~

I called my doctor's office and the nurse said he tested my cortisol levels which were normal so he doesn't think I have an adrenal problem. Thoughts?

Leiah said...

Susan is right. My mother just did the 24-hour saliva test and found she had a mass on one of her adrenal glands. Fortunately she saw an endocrinology specialist and he pushed for the additional testing. The mass was found to be benign but did have to be removed. Her diagnosis was Cushings disease but her energy is amazing now. Check around and see if you can find someone to do the testing. Good luck and positive healing energy sent your way!

Susan said...

Saliva test is more accurate than blood tests. I'm quite surprised that they even tested...you can do this at home..order the test from amazon.. they give you a prepaid label to send off to the lab and mail the results back to you...Thyroid goes hand in hand with adrenals.. don't count fully on medical drs. There are dr that treat this with the correct supplements. Also when your body is put under any kind of stress (btw adrenals don't distinguish between stresses it's all the same to them) your copper levels increase. So metal toxity becomes an issue fir adrenals. The cortisol also makes the progesterone leaving not enough for you maintain adequate amounts to cortisol. If they are not where they should be there is a level at which you cant help to feel depressed or just down because that hormone is not there to properly do its job...if I were you I would call several good chiropractors in your area to find a resl dr that underdtands all of this.. there are natural wayd to cure hasimotos thyroiditis.. but med put you on synthetic the rest of your life. There are drs that can help you..and at the ridk of being jumped on....most women should be on bio identical progesterone... created just for them according to where they are in their menstruation life...I hope this helps..btw when all these things are in place weight will not be an issue or cravings.

Susan said...

Just one more thing. .. athletes even get adrenal fatigue from over working their bodies.. and birthing babies add to it even babiies years back.. you have to find the right balance..if you do nothing else you eould to well to start supporting and feeding the adrenals. The aip diet is a great place to start but a good quality adaptogen and adrenal support supplement daily... you might notice a difference in a couple of weeks and mske sure you take zinc every day...dr has me on 40 mg a day. The color returned to my hair and my hair stopped falling out after 2 weeks also becsuse im detoxing metal that everyone has in excess in their bodies.. he has me on zeolite 10-20 drops 3 times a day. I get it on amazon. And good quality c and b complex everyday. He has me on some other things but I won't list them unless you want them.
Modt drs are not trained to look for adrenal issues until you are in adrenal failure (addisons, cushings) even most endocrinologist.

Susan said...

Im sorry I lost my stylus and I hit all the wrong letters. .lol
to many boo boos in my last post

julia.angelina said...

You probably felt so great at the same weight "on the way down" because weight loss from restricted calorie intake (which you def did) results in increased adrenal output. So lots of adrenaline, basically. Most everyone experiences a sense of euphoria, increased energy, renewed lightness when they are in the first months, even years of weight loss. But it will end. It's not sustainable. Just because it feels good doesn't mean it's sustainably good. Your body is trying to reach homeostasis now, and the weight loss likely over-worked your adrenals and diminished your metabolism. Sluggishness, inflammation, fatigue, dullness....all part and parcel of it. Eating regular meals to appetite and reducing stress will help. MIght make you gain weight in the short term- but you're never ever ever going to lose weight and keep it off or feel any better if you don't let the systems heal.