Weight loss. This is a topic I haven’t talked a lot about in the past, but I’m going to try really hard to be more open and honest about. I want to start sharing both the triumphs and the trials in hopes those of us who are in the same boat with wanting to improve our overall health can find support from each other. Sometimes it feels so isolating to be someone who struggles with weight issues when the blogging community seems to be full of really thin, gorgeous women and there are times I feel like I’ve really let it hold me back from going after some of my professional goals. (Like that YouTube channel I have been wanting to start for like three years? Ugh. I can’t even imagine getting in front of a camera!) So today is step one in coming out of the closet, if you will, and trying to pull back the curtain to say hey! I’m here. I’m not a size 2. Or a size 6. Or a size 10. I have the same self doubts and struggles that you do, and I’m hoping that through this transparency we can all help each other succeed at moving forward past the insecurities to a place where we feel healthier and more at peace. That’s my intention anyway. I’ll share more about the full extent of my weight loss struggles at another time (including the time I lost over 100 pounds but managed to slowly let a ton of it creep back on), but for today I just wanted to kick things off by talking about what I’ve been doing lately and how it is working for me. Because so many of you expressed interest in hearing more about my journey I thought I would share a quick update, specifically sharing about my 30 day (and counting) sugar detox results! Moving forward I’m thinking I’ll check in maybe once a month or so to share my progress, and probably more frequently over on Instagram if you want to follow along there.
For starters, let me share that I am serious believer in the power of food and nutrition to solve most, if not all, of a body’s woes. I believe this to be true when it comes to regulating weight as well. My major food weakness? Sugar. Oh, sweet heavenly sugar. Also, it turns out, sugar is basically poison for your body. And yes, sadly, that includes artificial sugars and sweeteners, too. Diet soda? It’s one of the worst things for you. My Diet Pepsi loving soul hates this fact, but it’s the truth. In January, I made the decision that as of February 1st I was going to give up all sugar and everything with added sugar. (You know, like ketchup and store bought salad dressings. All full of sugar!) I am also avoiding all artificial or natural sweeteners, including things like honey and maple syrup right now until I feel like I can use them only sparingly. I also decided to cut back on dairy and any processed wheat such as bread, pasta, etc. because my body tends to be really sensitive to those foods. I’m not saying I’ll never eat a cupcake again, because that’s just not going to happen. But on a day to day basis I am eating a diet that is essentially 100% compromised of veggies, fruits, whole grains such as quinoa, beans, nuts, seeds and eggs. I may have a bit of cream (real cream, not creamer) in my coffee. I occasionally pick up olives stuffed with blue cheese. Otherwise, I’ve cut out most all dairy, too. I have not touched bread or pasta or crackers or cookies or anything of the like for 30 days and counting. And you know what? Save for a few days of mild sugar withdrawal headaches (akin to caffeine withdrawal headaches), I feel pretty amazing!
As of today, I am down 11 pounds since February 1. This is in addition to the 22 pounds of baby weight (I only gained about 20 during my pregnancy) I had already lost, meaning in total I am down 33 pounds since my c-section in November. Sometimes I’m frustrated because it’s not going quicker, if I’m honest. I’ve completely overhauled how I eat and I was really hoping I’d see more like 13 – 15 pounds the first month. (Keep in mind, I have a not insignificant amount of weight left to lose.) But you know what? 11 pounds is kind of awesome, too, and I’ll take it! Add in the fact that my energy level really seems to be up (which is tricky in and of itself with a three month old in the mix), and I would have to say, I’m a believer. Additionally, I’ve lost a little over an inch around my waist and a little over an inch around my hips, too, which definitely seems like a good starting point considering I have a lot of swelling from my c-section still.
I think it’s important to note that I am not following any specific plan or “diet” at this point in time. I am simply trying to eat real, whole foods. I have not counted a single calorie or measured a single serving. Also, to date I have not been cleared to exercise so I have not been working out either. I eat things like baked sweet potatoes with spinach and black beans and fresh pico de gallo. Or salads loaded with veggies, greens, a bit of hummus and simple homemade vinaigrettes. I make big batches of grains (usually quinoa and sometimes barley or brown rice) a couple of times a week and then quickly make little hodge podge meals on the go, usually with a baby in one arm. (I’ve already shared my go-to lunch these days!) If you want to consider something like this yourself, I suggest checking out Hello Glow, a wellness site that I really love. (All of the photos in this post are from Hello Glow, to give you a little taste of the goodness that Stephanie has going on!) There are loads of great recipes and tips that will really help you get started with overhauling your diet, but it manages to feel pretty approachable and not overly crunchy. (I mean I’m down with some crunch clearly, but I don’t like to get too carried away with myself.) Also, watch the documentary Fed Up and Google search “sugar detox” and you’ll start to find loads of information.
So, lay it on me! Any tips or recipes for me? How about questions for me? Is anyone else trying to lose a whole crapload of ell bees this year? I am committed to being as open and honest with you about this process as I can. Eventually that will even mean sharing really real before numbers and photos, but I’m just not there yet. Give me a couple more months and hopefully I’ll have some good progress photos! In the meantime I’m going to be over here experimenting with the health benefits of turmeric and matcha, because both seem to be everywhere these days and apparently I can’t resist exploring the hype for myself. Thanks for your support, friends! You’re all amazing.[Photos from Hello Glow.]