It’s now three months since I started this journey. Along the way, I’ve connected with new bloggers who have interest in this topic. I’ve enjoyed and benefited from reading their posts, and appreciate their support of mine. Oddly, many of these followers found my blog through my week 3 update, which seems to be curiously well optimized. It has almost 80 “likes”. That week was a while ago. At week 3, I had made excellent progress on my journey each week. Then my vacation followed, and unfortunately I’ve been struggling ever since, but I do keep posting updates.
I actually weigh a tinge more today than at week 3. That may not inspire some readers, but I’m not beating myself up about it. In this post, I’d like to explain some of my stumbling blocks, and explore next steps. If you would, I’d love to receive some advice that might help me move forward again. Though I’ve learned a lot in the past, I still have plenty to learn, and need some reminders, too.
Week 12 weight change: + 1.0 lbs (+0.45 kg)
Total weight loss to date (over 8 weeks):– 8.2 lbs (-3.7 kg) – I’m so close to a 10 lb loss. I can do it!
Week’s exercise (above & beyond): Very little this past week. In fact, some days I even had a hard time getting out of bed. This is common for some people in slightly depressed states. Or even if not depressed, people with bipolar disorder, like me, often have dips in energy and motivation. I know that everyone does to a degree, but it is more marked when you have a mood disorder. I did push myself most days to do the bare minimum. Sometimes one has to be happy with that.
During my first three weeks of this journey, one of my medications was at a lower dose. It’s a medication notorious for weight gain. Unfortunately, I became sick with mania after that, and my dose went up a lot, increasing my appetite. I was still able to lose what I gained during that period, but sedation and mood decline eventually set in, further increasing my appetite. Despite this, I managed to not totally fall off the diet wagon. I’ve basically been stuck on a plateau. Plateaus are frustrating and common, I know, but it’s better than falling backwards or total diet abandonment. Do you know what? I’m OK with that at the moment.
The “fitness” aspect of my journey has been minimal. Though some weeks (and during my vacation), I made huge progress, on the whole it’s my weak point. I can’t promise to start walking regularly when I can barely get out of bed. Instead, I want to again concentrate on more healthful eating, doing essential chores and errands, and basic self-care. Many of you may think these goals are piddly, but you’d be surprised what a challenge it can be for people with a mood disorder.
Interim goals: Tracking my food intake is crucial to my success. I was actually tracking most days these past two weeks, but confess that I went over my daily allowances most days. That is so discouraging! I’d like to work hard to stay within my daily goals. Ideally, I’d like to do this every day this coming week, but if I can do it four out of the seven days I will be happy. The other three days, I will challenge myself not to exceed them significantly. Fighting oncoming depression is my highest priority. The further I fall into it, the harder and longer it is to get back on track and meet goals. I’ll work with my therapist on strategies. If anyone has tips to share, I could use them, as well. Even if they are just reminders.
Fish with Tomatoes, Olives and Capers – I did not take photographs of any of my “light” meals this week, but will share a light dinner recipe I made yesterday from the Food Network website. Both my husband and I really enjoyed it. It was very quick and easy to make. Find it here. I used cod fish. I served it with steamed zucchini and yellow squash, and a red-skin potato.
Skinny Homemade Mocha “Frappuccino-like” beverage treat – Coffee and chocolate lover? Trying to stay away from high fat/high sugar ice cream? Here’s another recipe you might try making at home:
- 2 fl oz (1/4 cup) cooled espresso or very strong coffee
- 1/3 cup skim milk
- 2/3 cup plus ice cubes (add a little more if you like yours more “frozen”
- Non-sugar sweetener of choice, to taste (I used 1 packet Truvia)
- Squirt of Hershey’s Light chocolate syrup in drink, plus drizzle on top
- 2 Tbs light or fat free whipped topping (like Reddi whip from the can)
Put cooled espresso/strong coffee, skim milk, ice cubes, sweetener, and squirt of light chocolate syrup in blender. Blend until ice is all blended in. Pour into a large drinking glass. Top with a serving of light or fat free whipped topping, then drizzle with a little more chocolate syrup. Makes 1 large serving. This is a lot cheaper to make than buying a frappuccino at Starbucks!
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.