I have now reached the halfway point in my 13 month Healthy Lifestyle weight loss program. As you can see from the top line – I have officially almost lost 20 pounds. And honestly, given the day, and time, and what I’m wearing… there have been days where I am actually down to 163 which is a full 20 pounds less than what I weighed at my highest ever point.
I also think there is a noticeable difference in my appearance.
It is important to me to point out that this has not been an easy journey. I’ve ramped up my physical activity from practically nothing, to letting a personal trainer kick my ass for an hour twice a week. I’ve changed my eating habits to include more vegetables than I ever thought possible. I’ve realized that while I was never in the morbidly obese, or dangerously overweight zone, I did qualify for the Sanford program, which forced me to acknowledge that my BMI firmly put me in the Obese category.
And still, with all of this effort, it has taken me from the end of March to now in mid-September to achieve a 20 pound weight loss. The two other people who are in my group have lost probably twice what I’ve lost. Granted, they probably had twice what I have to lose.
But I couldn’t seem to break that 10 pound loss threshold. No matter how much I worked out, no matter how much or how little I ate… I always hovered at the 175 mark. My dietitian suggested that I increase the amount of vegetables I was eating. That knocked my weight down a solid 2 to 3 pounds, but there it stayed.
Finally, the managing physician suggested that I try a medication that would help give my metabolism a “kick start.” I was all for it, I mean honestly, legitimate prescribed speed? Yes please. I have to add that the dietitian cautioned me against it initially, saying that I needed to learn the proper nutritional balance before trying something like that. I backed off my enthusiasm, trying the increased vegetables prescribed. But once the increased veggie intake approach stalled, she agreed to my prescription. OK, yes please again.
The prescribed Fentramine has taken me down a solid 5 pounds in two weeks. It does this, not by making me feel like a roller skate with a jet pack like the time in the 70s when my friends and I took “cross tops.” But more like a triple shot of espresso. It also just makes me not have an appetite. I still eat my salads, veggies, lean protein, and drink water, I just don’t want as much. It never occurred to me how strong hunger was in its ability to make us do things we know we shouldn’t, until I realized how much of the day I didn’t think about eating.
I will say that there are a few unpleasant side effects. 1) It gives me cotton mouth, which is easily taken care of by drinking enough water. 2) It makes my pee stink, and while no one has said anything, I feel like that same stink is oozing out of my pores. 3) In not being hungry, you can forget to eat, and thus skip the important veggie component. Skipping veggies, can make you constipated, and that is not a condition conducive to losing weight.
Having said that, there has been one really good side effect. I stopped taking my hormone replacement pills. In fact, I’ve stopped taking all of the 7 or so supplements I was taking. I’im guessing that this is more of a coincidence than a result of taking the pills. But whatever the causation, my hot flashes, and the flashes of adrenalin that preceded each hot flash have stopped completely.
I’m still in the first phases of this, but let me add that I feel great! My clothes fit better. My knees and hips don’t hurt. I have lots of healthy energy. That can’t be bad right?