So I have tried a few diets in the past few years and honestly, what “works” is pretty debatable.
Dr. Gundry’s Diet Evolution
As I have mentioned in the past, I don’t do well with carbs. I realized this with the Dr. Gundry diet revolution which is even more hard core than Paleo. I lost about 20 lbs with 6 months of that diet. But it was a “diet” for sure. It does have phases where you add back fruit and healthy carbs, but I went from zero to 1,000 and didn’t stop. It was so hard to do the Dr. Gundry again because every time you restart, it is harder to lose the weight. Having phases is hard for me because I tend to go overboard. Either I stayed in the teardown phase too long or I overdid it on the maintenance phase. I am so glad that I started with that one though. The book taught me so much! I checked it out from the library because I was in college then and poor. I learned about sugary fruits, probiotics, and what grain does to my body and heart. It was recommended to me by a nurse practitioner at a clinic where I did a free blood sugar test. Being told I was pre-diabetic at 22 was a huge hit to my psyche. So I reversed it with this diet.
http://www.drgundry.com/ <– Not a bad way to start. I liked most of the options and meal plans. It taught me caesar salad dress is low carb and about genetics and its’ role in my body.
Next, Weight Watchers. Tried it the free way, counting points and such. Yeah, this kinda worked? I had support and I liked that I could have treats, but it was tedious and I didn’t like all the calculating you have to do. Also, I had lost so much weight and been so healthy without grains and sugars that it seemed counter-intuitive now to let those things back in. I looked at a past log recently in an old notebook and saw I ate Jack in the Box meal as my points for one of the days. Seriously? I thought that was okay on WW? Too much restricting and then allowing. I got bored of WW after a couple months and lost about 5 lbs. I totally know WW works for some people, but for me, it is too flexible and free. Without hard limits, I become a carb crazy addict.
Then, paleo. I swear I was doing paleo before I had even heard of the term CrossFit (which I don’t do). I kind of thought I was making it up… It was the Dr. Gundry with fruit minus beans. However, Paleo doesn’t have you add back in grains or certain veggies in different phases. If looked at without judgement, it really can be called a lifestyle change. I liked Paleo, did it for a couple months and saw no real changes to my body. I think I might have had a little more energy and was less bloated, but scale was pretty much the same. So of course I gave up on the shit pretty quicky and ate like a horse for a few months.
Next, Advocare. I actually really liked Advocare! I was not expecting to because they don’t consider coffee “acceptable”. My sister got me into it because she liked the clean eating aspect and how the supplements keep you on a regular schedule of eating and pooping. She is constantly on me about my bowel movements. Apparently I don’t have as many as her and that is a red flag in her book. So for the month of September to kick off the new school year right, I did Advocare about 100%. I did like how the supplements kept me on an eating schedule. I really struggle to get food in me while at work. My pattern before was to starve all day and then eat everything in sight the second I got home. I didn’t mind replacing my coffee with their Spark energy drink in September because it was warm out and I pretended I was drinking iced coffee in my stainless steel Starbucks cold cup everyday (necessary for hiding the reminder of what you are really drinking). If in the winter, you asked me to give up my hot morning coffee, I would accuse you of not knowing me at all. People don’t understand what a “prop” a coffee mug is for a school counselor. Whenever I don’t know the answer or need to hide a smile, I take a sip…
What I loved about Advocare: their meal replacement shakes. Mocha=delicious. Yeah I know right? No coffee, but yes to mocha shakes? Dumb. I found out through Advocare that shakes works for me! I really liked having these. They made me full and I diluted them A LOT so that I could sip on it over a couple hours like my coffee.
So problem with Advocare is not really their problem. Once I ran out of pill packets, I stopped following their plan. I “tried” to eat clean without them but I struggled without the routine of knowing I had pills to take before. I tried using my own vitamins and leftover Omega 3s but it wasn’t the same. Work also got crazy busy as I had started at a new high school and the shit was finally hitting the fan after the honeymoon phase. So I ate donuts out of the staff room and went on a lot of Starbucks runs. I ended up gaining the 10 lbs I lost in one month of Advocare back over the course of three months.
NOW: My own plan. I like Paleo, I like Dr. Gundry, I like clean eating. I also did some research on body types after seeing something on pinterest and it really got me thinking about my body. I have always felt fat. As a kid, I always felt like I was bigger. Looking back on photos now, I wish I had appreciated my body at the size it was. Technically, I wasn’t overweight at all until I was a senior in high school. I wanted to be a little skinny minnie and when I couldn’t achieve it through dieting and exercise, I would flat out give up. I realized recently that I need to be realistic about what my genes is telling my body. I always thought that blaming genetics and body style was an excuse for not being able to lose weight. I am so over that. I am an endomorph. As a counselor, you would think I would have gotten past the denial phase a little faster…
That website was one that really helped me analyze my body and my experience with weight loss. I have a sluggish metabolism and my body is round and soft. Even when I weighed 145 lbs and felt ridiculously fit due to gymnastics and cheerleading (don’t judge), I still felt heavier and bigger than other girls. I have thighs that just don’t stop and have had to wear a bra since 3rd grade. And not the training kind. Being 5’2″ doesn’t help either. Nowhere to go but around my midsection. All the information on body types (ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph) explain why a low carb, high fat diet works for my body.
I wish I could post some photos to show you the difference from then to college to now, but you know what makes a 27 year old these days sound really old? We didn’t have smartphones when I was in high school. I mean, it kinda became a thing my senior year for the rich kids, but I didn’t get a smartphone until after I graduated from college and started graduate school. I mean honestly, I am kind of glad to not have some photos. I had a really long awkward middle school weird looking phase. But now, I kind of wish I could remember that I can be 145 and fit. It would be a nice reminder and motivate me. I will however, share the most recent photo I can find of myself so you can see where I am at.
This is 185 lbs on a 5’2″ body. I am a little embarrassed to admit my weight, but if they can do it on the Biggest Loser and Extreme Weight Loss: Makeover edition, then I can too.
Wow, it was really hard to find a photo where you can actually see my body. I was probably closer to 180 in this picture. The past month has been all huge down jackets and free form dresses that hide my body. That is my husband. I think that is his 3rd plate of pizza. I ate one slice and my skirt felt super tight.
Me at around 175 lbs about a month after I finished the Advocare challenge. I was a Starbucks Frappachino for Halloween at work. The kids loved it 🙂 I gained most of the weight back in November and December. Yeah, I know. Predictable.
So yeah, that was a freaking long post. I got lots of thoughts! I don’t know how to end a blog post yet…