Power to the She – Weight Loss Game On!

No messing around with this anymore.  Yesterday I re-enlisted with Diet Center to lose the pounds that continue to slow me down – running and in daily life.  I have had some things going on with blood sugar, hormones and a case of fooling myself about what I am eating, so I felt  it was time to jump in and get some help from a professional.

This is the place that helped me shed the weight I gained (35 pounds) after I quit smoking so many years ago and then again after I had Alex.  I kept it off for almost 2 decades.  However, the last 4 years it has slowly started to creep back on even though I felt like my eating hadn’t changed.  I’ve tried several things on my own but now am surrendering to what I consider the ultimate weapon – Diet Center.

I need to relearn how to eat properly…what my body needs and how much as well as how often.

I’m committed to seeing this through.  I’m tired of pounding the pavement and feeling like I can’t run faster or more without injuring myself because of my age and size.  My breathing is impacted too.  Who am I kidding.  I remember that breathless feeling when I was in the last months of pregnancy.  Not that I am feeling that big, but that weight does play a factor in such.

The first thing they do at DC is run a body fat analysis.  Okay, here are the painful stats:

Present Weight:  165   Goal:   140  

Fat Pounds: 53

Present  Fat %: 32    Goal: 20%

Present Lean Wt: 111

In January of 1994, when I paid my very first visit to DC my weight was 169 and my body fat was 34%.  After 4 hard fought months in which I traveled a lot, my weight was 137 and body fat was 18%.  I rarely ate out during that period, had no alcohol :( (all for the cause), exercised regularly and followed the plan to the T.  I used such a small amount of oil when I cooked (mainly olive oil) that a bottle lasted me a couple of months back then.  I’ve since been using more with seasonings that were higher in sodium than I realized.

They recheck body composition at least once per month.  To be sure you aren’t losing lean.

They also take measurements and then retake them each month.

My diet consists of:

1200 calories, 2 starches, 5 vegetables, 2 fruits, 8 protein, 3 dairy and 2 fats.  I was fooling myself with how I was eating before and realized it once she re-educated me on portions and the art of reading labels and judging the ratios of how many carbs per fat grams, sugar, proteins, etc.  What causes something to be a dairy and not a protein, etc.  Also, I had forgotten about the hidden sodium in even the smallest things.

Water: I drink a lot of water and never forgot about that essential to good dieting.  One of the many helpful tips my friend and coach Pat offered, is to drink a full glass of water before a meal – it helps to give you a full feeling.  “Thanks Pat!” :)

Exercise goes hand in hand with the diet too.  I’ve committed to running/walking 3 miles per day for 5 days per week.  Today, I’m going out at lunch.  All of this goes into the equation and all I have to do is follow it.  Learning along the way so I continue my good habits after each phase of the diet.

There is so much more and I’ll share along the way.  Ultimately, I just want to fit back into my closet full of clothes and be able to run like the wind come June when my training begins for the full marathon that I am running in October.  I have to admit I get scared thinking about that.  I am going to get a stress test too before that to rule out any hidden heart issues that could surface under that kind of stress and strain.  That is one of the reasons you hear of people that collapse and die after or during a race.  They had a condition they weren’t aware of before.

A recent study mentioned in Time Magazine (click here for full article)  found that many of those who had heart attacks during long distance races had thickened heart walls, or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, in which the heart muscle becomes enlarged and less flexible, making it harder to pump blood efficiently. And because marathon runners tend to be older, many also had atherosclerosis, or buildup of plaques within their heart vessel walls, which can also impede blood flow.  Heart issues don’t run in my family – fortunately.  So I will be surprised if anything like that is an issue.  However, I am not chancing it.  Getting checked before training starts and everyone considering a marathon should do the same – especially those over 40 (or 50 like me).

There are other things that put a body at risk  – like conditioning and weight.  I want to cut out all of those risks.  So between my coach Pat and DC friend Stephanie, I will be successful.

My first challenge is a banquet I’m attending Friday night.  I’m going to call and request a special salad plate (lettuce, vegies, no cheese, no dressing and no croutons either – bringing my own dressing).  Also asking for grilled chicken on salad too.

*A little trick Stephanie showed me was to put 2 tablespoons of light dressing in a shaker and add either balsamic vinegar or water and shake it up – makes your dressing go further.

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