What Really Works for Weight Loss?

Oprah pulling fat

If it was out of the bag?

What really works for weight loss? No this isn’t going to be some sales blog for all my products, etc. I know what works, the same old sage advice “Diet and Exercise”, but what if you know what works, but you just can’t make yourself “do it”? That’s where I’m at. I just don’t have the motivation and some of the stuff I’ve done in the past doesn’t work as well now that I’m older and “post menopausal”. LOL.

I was getting in and out of the shower today and was looking at my body. I know, don’t hate, and I don’t. I just don’t like very much and it doesn’t feel as good as it did when I weighed what I am supposed to. I remembered how flabbergasted I was when I saw the picture of Oprah pulling 65 pounds of fat behind her in the wagon as a representative of all the weight she had lost this particular time. That led me to remember a WeightWatchers leader mentioning about getting a pound of fat and take it home and play with it, feel it, look at it. Yuck! So I was thinking how ugly that 65 pounds of fat would have been if Oprah had unleashed it in the red wagon instead of having it all neatly packed into the bag.

I’m thinking I’m really tired of making the same old resolutions this year that end up not being kept (doesn’t say much for my integrity does it? LOL). I think this year I’ll make a resolution to get more motivated by buying a couple pounds of fat. I can see a roll of fat that runs under my boobs across the front and then it kind of indents, and then the big belly fat below that if I was 30 yrs. younger someone may mistake for a small child growing inside. LOL. But my skin is sort of like the bag around the fat in Oprah’s red wagon. It keeps it somewhat contained. I think it’s time to unleash it and see what it’s really like, figuratively speaking of course. See if that works any better than anything else I’ve tried to stay motivated. Desperate times call for desperate measures. LOL.

Anyone else with any new ideas for staying motivated to lose weight in the new year? I’d love liposuction, but then that would lead to plastic surgery, and then, OMG where does it end?

Oh, speaking of losing weight and good food, I added a link to a food blog today. There is a beautiful recipe for Christmas pudding on there, that if you’ve ever wanted to try it or even see that it’s a real food, this is the place! A ton of recipes. Not all “diet friendly”, but I know how to substitute for most things. Like I said, I know what works, I just may not always do it. LOL.

Happy Holidays everybody, what ever that is for you, and Merry Christmas, Happy New Year for me.

Am I My Mother?

My mother is 78 yrs. old and her favorite forms of exercise are eating and watching TV. She gave up on herself years ago, has gone through some pretty unhealthy times, and is ready to go home to the Lord anytime he’s willing to take her. Like me she has no desire to exercise, although at least I realize some movement is necessary. If she had her way she would never move at all. I quit taking her in her meals etc. as going to the kitchen was the only exercise she got. It wasn’t far from her chair to the kitchen, but she made the trip several times so at least she was doing something.

We’ve been staying in a hotel recently and the ice machine and dining area are both quite a little distance away. We walk over to the dining area every morning for breakfast, me walking slightly ahead leading the way, her in her walker. She quit putting ice in her water. Too far to walk. Finally yesterday I saw her heading for ice and followed behind her. She did just fine. Coming back however, knowing I was there, she’d pause for a moment and then made a point of letting me know her legs get tired. I don’t know why after all these years she hasn’t gotten it that something like that is just an invitation for me to tell her she needs to move more.

All my life my mother has said she didn’t want to be like my grandmother, who used to sit by the broadband radio listening to police calls all the time, rarely venturing out of her apartment. Now she admits that although she said that, she has actually gotten worse than her mother was. Now as I look at my mother I find myself thinking the same thing. I don’t want to be like her, lazy, fat, no life. I want to “live ’till I die”.

I either fractured my back or tore some muscles in it when we were moving. Oh my gosh, such pain. It’s starting to feel much better after almost 2 weeks, but I realize the most painful time is when I get up out of bed. While I realize many of us get stiff as we get older, making the onset of movement a bit painful, I don’t think that is the problem I’m having. The problem I’m having is the extra weight in my tummy pulling on my back as I lay on my side to sleep.

I’ve heard it said of men that have large stomachs when they see a doctor about lower back pain. Many are told most of the pain would go away if they just lost their tummies. I have no reason to think my tummy is any different. So, while I have always said that I wanted to be a “sexy” senior, for health concerns hitting home it’s about time I decided if I want to be like my mother and miserable, or more like a ‘cougar’, you know, one of those older women that look so good and are so active they go with younger men just to have someone who can keep up. LOL. I think right now I’m heading in the wrong direction.

Getting Older,Gaining Weight, Syndrome W

Like we don’t have enough to worry about with our butts and boobs sagging, now some genius doctor has discovered Syndrome W which affects older women. This isn’t my problem as I’m the way I am from lack of exercise, etc. but it is a problem.

I originally read about this over at Between Us Girls  and decided to do a little more research. Evidently the symptoms are:

  1. Gaining weight for no apparent reason while you are still physically active
  2. Gaining weight around your waist instead of gaining all over as would be the normal way people gain
  3. Blood Pressure creeping up
  4. Bad cholesterol creeping up
  5. fatigue (which I just figures comes with weight gain)
  6. Elevated insulin levels even tho blood glucose levels were normal

The study Dr. Harriet Mogul coined as Syndrome W which stands for “waist gain” showed that many women suffer from insulin resistance despite being fit, non-smoking, and basically thin for most their lives.

According to Health Discovery.com when glucose is  locked out of resistant cells, it has nowhere to go and starts building up in the bloodstream. The pancreas releases yet more insulin to try to compensate, and for a while, that works to force glucose through the cell doors.

An insulin resistant person can maintain normal blood glucose levels, although doing so may require insulin levels as much as 40 percent above normal. And as Stanford’s Dr. Reaven has publicized, excess insulin alone can cause significant cardiovascular damage.

What’s more, in at least a portion of the estimated 60 million to 80 million Americans who are currently insulin resistant, the pancreas will eventually lose its battle and glucose levels will begin creeping upward.

Untreated, 10 percent of those who started out as simply insulin resistant are likely to progress to full-blown diabetes, according to Dr. Reaven. But only then will most people realize they have a problem. Insulin resistance has been called a “silent killer,” because it is symptomless, or so it was thought.

One of the most obvious symptoms of this disease is the “apple shape” some of us women take on. Dr. Mogul’s plan is a low-carbohydrate, low glycemic diet and a drug called metformin that counteracts insulin resistance. Evidently they’ve had great success in staving off full blown diabetes in the patients that follow the plan.

For more information,(I’ve sort of simplified it here) visit Dr. Mogul’s website. She has some great info, a food pyramid, and a FAQ. She’s also written a book you may find helpful.

Damn You, Valerie!

valerieOkay, not really. I love Valerie Bertinelli. I used to think she was so cute in “One Day At A Time” when I was younger. And yes, I’m one of the million who could not understand how a girl like her could marry Van Halen (bad boy). I remember seeing her in a couple of made-for-tv-movies but I hadn’t seen her in awhile.

I’m sure everyone saw when she took Kirstie Alley’s job away as spokesperson for Jenny Craig. Evidently Kirstie Alley’s rowing the same boat to weight gain that I am. LOL. I haven’t seen many commercials for awhile featuring either one of them, although the “rags” are more than happy to keep us informed of every ounce poor Kirstie gains back.

Yesterday as I sign on to AOL (almost online) I end up staring right into the face of sweet Valerie and the story of her posing in a bikini on the cover of people magazine. She looks like  a 20 yr. old and you could never tell she’s had a child! Me, I still carry part of my “baby weight” in what we non-affectionately call an “apron”. She’s  almost 50! She said she hadn’t worn a bikini in 20 years. On top of that she’s written a new book about her weight loss called “Losing It: How I Got My Life Back One Pound At A Time”. I don’t think we’ll be seeing her on the front page of the Enquirer with a story about how she gained all her weight back any time soon.

While she didn’t have to pay for her food like you or I would, according to her she attributes most of her weight loss to 10,000 steps per day. She didn’t get a personal trainer until she wanted to lose the last 15 or 20 lbs. She doesn’t even “wrinkle” right for her age (you know, one of those damn natural beauties). I have 3 pedometers and I can’t get even 1 to work right, although after today I’m going to try again with my favorite one.

So I got to thinking.

1) I should have been doing my lifestyle changes with her instead of just watching. I may have been done now too.

2) I don’t think I like Heather Locklear much either. LOL.

3) I have run out of excuses. The last one I was clinging to was being post menopausal, it’s harder to lose (especially if you don’t move a lot). 

Too many of these women that look so good are my age or older! Look at Meryl Streep, Faye Dunaway, Goldie Hawn (who does look like hell without makeup, but she’s in great shape). There really is no excuse for letting myself go like this and not doing something about it. So, I’m off again to log my points and make another stab at the gym. (If I can find parking I might even go in this time).

Thank you contactmusic.com for the pic. At least in this one it looks like she could use a little work on those underarms. LOL.

I Love Science And Weight Loss

When you’ve dieted as many times and for as many years of your life as I have, you get to a point where just about everything you hear is the “same old stuff”, which I guess no matter how you cut it, it keeps being the same old stuff because that’s what works.

“Watch the calories. Burn more than you eat.” blah, blah, blah.

Every once in awhile science makes a breakthrough that helps the same old stuff work better or faster. One of those new things is the way we exercise.

I get a lot of health magazines and newsletters. I sell vitamins and nutritional supplements so I like to keep up with that kind of information. Some of the newsletters I get are from doctors that don’t necessarily “conform to the norm”. LOL. They do a lot of their own research, come up with their own theories, and fight an uphill battle until the regular populous of doctors “get it”.  One such doctor is Dr. Al Sears.

I have read his articles and looked at his P.A.C.E. program for exercise for years. His big thing in life seems to be making people aware that cardio is actually bad for your health (heart) and the way we should be exercising for health and weight loss. Now his way of thinking has pretty much taken off. While they don’t tell you how bad cardio for extended periods of time is for you, they are preaching more about circuit training and interval training as a way of boosting your metabolism and burning more fat.

The first one to “get it” was Curves, the gym that was basically women only and you move between resistance training and cardio every 30 seconds. They had everything set up in a circle and you move from machine to running in place to machine to running, until you completed the circle twice. For a beginner, I thought that worked pretty well. If you were more experienced you could always ramp it up.

Now as I look at some of the trainings for these marathon and half marathon runners, they are teaching the interval training. The “Couch to 5K” is a great example of that. It’s where you do bursts of high intensity in between regular brisk walking. This kind of exercise is supposed to strengthen your heart, plus keep your metabolism working long after your done. They say their interval training will have anyone running 3 miles in just 2 months following their plan.

Since getting older and so much more sedentary than I’ve ever been, strengthening the heart is a biggy for me. They say the reason that people run marathons and then kiel over dead when appearing to be in perfect health is that while running, the heart is under constant stress. The interval training “conditions” it vs. stressing it.

Did you know if you just stand instead of sitting one more hour per day, you burn an extra 100 calories? I thought that was interesting.

Also being post- menapausal the things that used to work for me to lose weight aren’t working any more. My body reacts differently to things than it used to. I’ve been using the interval training and the circut training, and I do feel a difference. Now I just need to be a bit better about my eating plan.

Speaking of eating, any body else go to Superbowl parties yesterday where there is much more food on the buffet table than there are people to eat it?

1 Month In- How Ya Doin’?

Well it’s been a month since we all set out New Year’s Resolutions or “goals” if you will. How many have you broken so far? LOL. It hasn’t been that long since my daughter and I decided to do this weight loss thing together, but I was supposedly starting right after New Year’s.

One thing I’ve learned is that when you reach my age, that post-menapausal age, the body can start falling apart in a hurry! I was doing really well going to the gym, even if I don’t like how crowded it gets sometimes, that when I don’t go now my body hurts.

I’ve been involved in a couple of life altering projects this week, and I have sorely, and I do mean sorely, neglected exercise. When I get on these projects I go from “all out” to “burn out” and there is no in between. I have discovered this week that I can no longer do that.

I’ve always griped at my mother about not moving more, and she always says it hurts. My answer to that is if you would move more, you would work that stiffness out and it wouldn’t hurt so much. I know that’s good in theory, but I’ve often wondered if I would practice what I preached. I am. It has finally become more painful not to exercise, than to exercise.

While I know it’s much more rewarding to exercise, that has never been enough to motivate me. Neither has the fact that exercise helps to stave off Alzheimer’s, which worries me but I do a lot of constant learning, etc. so it probably doesn’t worry me as much as it should. I have a very low threshold for pain however and this just might be the answer for me.

As far as the diet part goes, I’ve done well. Not terrific, but well. I have not lost any weight yet, but I think a part of that has been stress, sitting a lot, and then yeah, not being as good as I should be. Once again I will return to Sparkpeople to track what I eat. One of my biggest downfalls is not planning ahead, then I don’t want to quit what I’m doing to go figure something out for dinner. I am still working on correcting that. I started this morning by pulling the ground beef out of the freezer at 8 am. LOL. Now on to find my WeightWatchers recipe to go with it.

I’m Ramping Up!

I know they say not to keep saying “I’ll start tomorrow” but I’m saying it. I am still getting set up to get serious for sure this year. I am finishing the last of the holiday food which includes a multi-flavored mini cheesecake, and I need the BF to hook up my son’s old VCR in the kitchen where I have all my gym equipment set up. I got a webcam for XMAS (actually 2 but took one back) that I need to get hooked up and learn how to use, and am taking more before pictures to do a sort of “journey in pics” thing.

I am proud to say I’m not starting this year any heavier than I have been for several months, so I don’t have to deal with added weight. That was the goal I had set prior to Thanksgiving, and I was able to make that one work without too much effort.

What I am not proud of is that I started this blog a year ago last Sept. to force a sort of accountability, but it really didn’t help. There is a certain anonymity in being in cyberspace and while I have told the truth on my blog here, I haven’t really had to face anyone but myself, and obviously I’m not my strictest disciplinarian. I’ve decided that has to change. I need to face myself and you and not with the same old story.

While I get motivated over and over again, I’m not consistently motivated which is for sure part of my downfall. Trying to combat that, I am scheduling in the beginning of my day to go thru the WeightWatchers and Sparkpeople’s message boards, participate in the tracking tools daily, and look more for motivators around me.

I figure I have 2 choices: be where I am a year from now or be where I want to be a year from now.  Right here and now, on this second day of January, 2009 I am choosing the latter!

What are you going to do different this year? Or if what you’re doing is working for you and you’re sticking with it, SHARE. LOL