As you will learn in the coming days, weeks and months I have struggled with my weight for years. I come from stocky stock but I do not believe that it should be my destiny. I want to be healthy. And comfortable. And I am going to do it.
Two years ago I set out to conquer my bulge with the South Beach Diet. I was a great believer and set to making my lifestyle, workable, sustainable and enjoyable. I read the books. I created a weekly menu. I decided to measure my weight loss in clothing rather than the scale.
When my pants began to sag I was nervously excited. Nearly a year into the plan I walked into a dressing room at my favorite outlet store and stood crying over the array of things I had brought in which FIT. I had started the South Beach diet weighing nearly 225lbs and wearing size 20 jeans. I am just shy of 5' tall. That day, in the dressing room, I had brought in a stack of size Medium shirts, sweaters and other things. I was overwhelmed by how far I had come. I met with my doctor for my annual physical that year and she teared up at how my hard work was paying off; that my choice to make a change with hard work and a healthy diet had been working so well. I weighed 174lbs and fit into size 12 jeans.
Then something changed. I plateaued. I began to tweak my diet, trying to shore up my rules, increasing my fiber, reducing alcohol intake. The pounds I worked so hard to lose began to creep back on. After a couple of months without change I decided to try going gluten free. I gained nearly 20lbs during the time I tried to live the gluten free life. I made some big mistakes. Like cookies. A gluten free cookie is still a cookie. I wasn't eating them before, I shouldn't have allowed myself such laxity when I shifted my diet.
For months I tinkered. I kept the majority of my rules but I was slipping. I wasn't motivated. I was gaining weight. I felt helpless and so I told myself that as long as I stayed the size I was (back to a 14 at the time) I wouldn't worry. I had still made progress. When my pants kept getting tighter and I began to avoid the things I loved (short shorts, yoga nearly 3 times a week, some of my favorite clothes) I knew I needed help.
I sought out a nutritionist and it took nearly 2 months to get an intake appointment. Seeing her that first time and having to give her my whole history and relationship with food and my body... telling her about my family history and my fears about aging and what my weight could mean... I felt like I was laying my soul bare. But I also felt like she was listening. That I wasn't just a number and that this was the beginning of making a change. Again.
I like seeing her. The bared soul feeling has subsided and been replaced by hope. And determination. We've been talking about trying an elimination diet and this week I've embarked on this strange challenge. I look forward to sharing my progress and the effects. All the good and all the bad.
If you read any of this and it is helpful to you in any way, I am thrilled. If you have been here and made it to the other side let me know. I will do my best to be brutally honest with myself here and in the real world, too. Time to make my old self new.