Above: Some of the foods I went overboard eating this week.
Well, you might recall my hefty weight loss just after my return home from Portugal, but since then I’ve fallen off the fitness and weight loss program. I’m glad, however, that I continue to write these updates. If I ever do discontinue them, that would represent major trouble. Though I’ve gained a bit in the last couple of weeks, they haven’t been huge gains. There were perhaps a couple of reasons for my diet side line. I’ll explore them in my reflections below. In the meantime, this is what the scale showed me this morning:
Week’s weight change:+0.6 lbs (+0.27 kg)
Total weight loss to date (over 8 weeks): -6.8 lbs (-3.1 kg), with time period including a 2-week vacation in Portugal.
Week’s exercise (above & beyond): Untracked, though this week I did feel energized and did a number of chores and activities. I did not do deliberate exercise, though. That is a negative, but being up and about a lot is not exactly being “sedentary”, a descriptive word for my activity levels prior to my weight loss journey.
More than a week ago, I was not in a good mental state. In my last Friday Fitness and Weight Loss Update, I mentioned that I had been experiencing a bipolar disorder episode of mania with mixed features. Learn about that here. A medication change luckily eased some aspects of that episode. In my case, it eased the least appealing aspect – the depressive part, while the manic part remained. That’s kind of an interesting happening, isn’t it? Actually, though it left the mania, the mania was reduced to a lesser severity, called hypomania. It was also a more happy/joyous type of hypomania, though I did experience blips of irritability on occasion.
Sometimes when I’m manic or hypomanic, I forget to eat. Other times, I use food as a means to further satisfy myself. My state leaned more towards the latter this time. Impulsivity (another common manic symptom) often makes a manic person less in control of their actions. In regards to eating, I had a “What the hell!” attitude. I wanted the pizza, so I ate it. I wanted ice cream, again I ate it. Yum, yum! I wanted it all. My ability to stop/limit myself and be mindful went out the window to a certain degree.
The medication my doctor raised is notorious for causing carbohydrate cravings. Generally, that side effect is minimal for me at lower doses, but I was not used to the higher dose. It’s possible that this tendency, along with the impulsivity, were factors in my gain. But you saw that my weight gain this week wasn’t extreme. I think that’s because I did make some good choices along the way. I also imagine that my increased energy levels (regardless of little deliberate exercise) could have helped with some calorie burning.
Interim goals: Last week my goal was to track my eating every day. I regret that I didn’t do that, though I did track half of the days. I’d like to repeat the goal of daily tracking for this week. I am currently feeling pretty stable today, and more grounded. My breakfast was well planned this morning, and I have a good plan for lunch and dinner. That’s a good start.
I did not make any special new recipe this week, so instead, I’d like to share some lessons I’ve learned in the past that I, myself, need to remember:
Keep foods that you tend to grossly overeat out of the house. Or if your spouse or children demand them, ask them to hide them or closely keep track of the quantities left. Do you have foods that you tend to overeat? I’ve discovered that hard pretzels, nuts and nut bars, and chocolate are just too tempting. It’s difficult for me to stop at one serving. Sometimes I keep eating them with the idea of “getting rid of them”, but I consume way too many calories along the way. Occasionally, I toss the remainder in the garbage, even squirting catsup on top. That does work, but do you have a better solution to share?
To read about the weight loss plan and tools I chose for this effort, click My Fitness and Weight Loss Plan Described. You can also read my very first post introducing this effort at Long haul healthy weight and fitness efforts – creation of a Friday post series.