All my life I was thin.
In fact, sometimes I was so thin it wasn’t healthy.
I didn’t try to be thin, it just was what my body was like.
But then menopause hit when I was 45 and everything changed.
Sleeping well flew right out the window. With some nights finding myself sleeping only 2 hours, I was beside myself. A coworker suggested Ambien, which in my desperation I took. Big mistake! I found myself sleep eating without even being aware of it, except when I would wake up in the morning with chocolate around my mouth.
Fast forward a few years and I had gained over 40 pounds.
That is when my knee developed arthritis. The arthritis was so bad I could only walk a few steps without stopping. After that I ballooned up to 211 lbs. Yikes! I remember being on a photo-shoot and the photographer taking a photo of me. Cameras don’t lie but I had trouble believing it was I when I saw the photo.
Two years ago I had knee surgery, which was an absolute godsend. I could finally walk without pain.
Over the next two years I naturally lost 20lbs without doing much other than not taking Ambien any more. But after that, the weight loss stopped. I was 20 pounds thinner, but I kind of hit a plateau. I decided this year would be the last year I would make losing weight a goal. I was going to lose the weight by December 31, 2020 – no matter what.
I started the year slow.
The first month I cut out carbs and alcohol. The next month I added yoga. So each month I added something to increase weight loss. Now on August 12, 2020 I have lost and additional 20 lbs. for a total weight loss of 40 lbs. My goal is to lose 46 more pounds. Now there is a good chance that I will lose it by the end of December. But, there are no guarantees. As long as I keep losing steadily if it takes a few months longer I am totally ok with it.
Let’s face it, I already look and feel a lot better than I did 40 lbs. ago!
So what is it that I am doing now that works for me and has me consistently losing weight each week?
- No alcohol – Let me tell you, I do miss my wine!
- No starches – That means no bread, flour, pasta, potatoes, pancakes or waffles.
- Drink only coffee and water. – I do add one sugar and milk to my coffee, but I don’t drink things with calories except the coffee.
- Drink 80 ounces of water a day.
- Use intermittent fasting – I try to finish my last meal by 6 pm and then not eat again till 16-18 hours later. It is very healthy to do, and I do eat the same amount of food as I usually do but in a more condensed period.
- I try to limit dairy in my diet but do have milk, cheese, and yogurt.
- I eat lots of vegetables and fruit.
- I also try to eat clean whenever possible – meaning I avoid processed foods.
- I try to take 5,000 steps a day.
- Each day I take a walk for about 25 minutes in order to get some cardio in. This is included in my 5,000 steps.
- I do 15 minutes of yoga each day.
- I also meditate 10 minutes a day. While I am not sure it helps me lose weight by itself, it does improve my mindset.
One of the biggest lessons I learned about myself is this:
- I cannot make changes all at once, otherwise I can’t sustain them. I slowly built up to this overtime.
- I cannot have cheat days. They have to be months apart, otherwise it is hard to get back on the wagon.
- I have to have the same exercise routine everyday. Otherwise, I take days off and then get out of the routine.
Some of the side benefits of the program I am on to lose weight are the following:
- My back and joints hurt less.
- I am sleeping much better.
- My blood pressure is down.
- My blood work doesn’t show high cholesterol anymore.
- I have more stamina.
- My Parkinson symptoms seemed to have lessoned.
But without a doubt, the most benefit is the feeling of accomplishment I get from achieving my goals. It helps me to feel that anything is possible.
As a woman over 50, I understand and accept that I’m not going to have the body of a twenty year old. That was never the goal. I want to feel good about who I really am.
Not only is this process proving to be healthy for my body, but it’s also benefitting my mind and spirit.
I can’t guarantee that the exact same recipe will work for you (every body is different) but I truly believe that the underlying principles will.
Start slow, but be consistent and let me know in the comments the results you’re having!