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NaBlowWriMo ~ JanWriSo...losing weight...

I am in the process of working on losing weight. I need to lose weight in a serious, serious way. My short little fat body just can't handle the strain on it and something has to change. Every pound I lose is a struggle. In fact, despite my best efforts I am more likely to gain weight than I am to lose weight. My body is very, very, very fond of its fat cells and not only wants to hold onto what it has but it wants to add more to keep all of the other ones from ever getting lonely.

I know that the conventional wisdom is that if you eat less and move more you will lose weight. Um yeah, not so much! Yes, this does work for some people and for those people I am so happy that I would do a back flip if I could but it doesn't work for everyone. This is especially troublesome in these times when fat people are constantly blamed, chastised and reviled for having the unmitigated gall to be fat. Well guess what, we didn't choose to get fat. Yes, we may have engaged in bad habits that contributed to us being overweight but while some in the medical field are shaking their fingers at us for being undisciplined slobs who are not willing to take responsibility for our own medical destiny others in the field are finding that there are genetic, hormonal and other factors that are contributing to morbid obesity. This is not a one size fits all problem.

Hey, I am not saying that I haven't inhaled too many Quarter Pounders, gobbled more french fries than I should have and sucked down more Popeye's Fried Chicken than any prudent person should have ever even touched. I have played a significant role in my weight gain. I can also tell you that I have put even more effort into losing weight than I ever did into gaining weight and the rewards have been negligible at best. It sometimes seems that the harder I work to lose weight the more difficult it becomes.

Over the years I have cut back on foods that can cause weight gain and have even banished foods from the house that I know are "trigger" foods for me. As I figure out foods that cause me problems I phase them out of foods that are allowed in my home or at least foods that I have access to. Even though I take these steps I still battle with weight issues.

Right now I am working with a dietician through my doctor's office in an effort to lose weight for good. I am not only counting calories but I am having to face a dietary professional every two weeks when I weigh in. This is even worse then weighing in at Weight Watchers IMHO. This is part of my medical record. I am medically committed to this weight loss process. It is serious.

Today was weigh in day. I had expected a gain. My body feels like it is gaining weight. You see I am an "apple." All most all of my weight is right around my middle. Oh yeah, I am starting to get a butt and some thighs because I am so heavy now but until the last 50 or so pounds I had no butt and thin legs for a woman of my size. Now, I do have hams for upper arms but except for them my torso is where the weight is primarily located. I am truly an "apple's apple." It is HORRIBLE! I read this past week that a famous internet doctor considers anyone who is my height to  be morbidly obese if their waist is more than 24 inches around no matter what they weigh. Well, dude when I weighed around 105 back in high school my waist was 32 inches around. That's right, I was on the low end of my weight spectrum at the time and this guy would have considered me to be morbidly obese. Yeah, well in his book I don't stand a chance. Anyway, going back to my body feeling like it is gaining weight...my abdomen is not shrinking. Now maybe my butt is or my thighs are but my abdomen is growing so to me that means I am gaining weight. Well according to the scales I have lost more than eight pounds in two weeks. I don't know how that happened. How can my body feel fatter while I am losing weight?

I was talking to my dietician about this. She asked if I was still keeping my food journal. I answered to the affirmative. I have been keeping a food journal for almost five years. I have monitored my calories all of that time. I have gained almost 100 pounds while eating the amount of calories that I am supposed to be eating for my size. I have even reduced the amount of calories I have been eating. My medical conditions are getting much better because I am eating better and monitoring my food intake but I was still gaining weight so keeping a food journal is second nature and not trusting it to correlate with any discernible weight loss(and quite the contrary) has been my experience during all of that time. Anyway, when my dietician asked if I were keeping a journal I said yes and she asked if I was staying in my calorie range and again I said yes so then she asked me why I would expect a weight gain and I said because my body feels fatter and because calories in and calories out do not mean that I will lose weight. I don't think she believes me. She thinks I should be glad about how much weight I have lost in 3 months. It is almost 20 pounds. I think that is a fluke. I think that my body will figure out that I have lost this weight and that it will come right back on no matter what I do. I have many years of experience with this. It is not something that just started yesterday.

I will say that I do fell that by falling into the "low fat" diet mentality that I did not do my body any favors. Now, I did not gorge on fat free or low fat candies, cookies and such that some people did. I still paid attention to the calories. I ate whole grains, legumes, fruits and veggies a lot of the time. Yes, I did still eat some fast food through those years but over all I kept my fat levels very, very low. I am not sure that was what my body needed. It is water under the bridge now but I don't know if I am one of those people who should have avoided the carbs more and not have focused on keeping my fat grams under 10 a day most of the time.

I also have not been one of those to "drink" my calories. I seldom drink soda or spirits. I usually drink water or unsweetened iced tea. When I drink coffee I do put creamer and sugar in it. Often for "cream" I use(d) evaporated milk. Coffee is my one weakness for calories in drinks. Oh, I am not into fruit juice either. I do like tomato juice but don't have it often even though it is low calorie. In the past I did have a glass of fruit juice in a smoothie or a protein shake. That would be one glass per day if even that much. in the past 10 years or so I have maybe had four glasses of orange juice. I did have a few glasses of grape juice when I had a stomach bug just to be able to have something on my stomach. That didn't work. It gave me really bad diarrhea. Lesson learned. So, as you can see I do not tend to drink calories.

In fact, my worst habits are fried foods, fast food and snack foods(chips and dips). Because I can't stand for long periods of time fried foods almost never appear in our meals unless we do have the opportunity to go out to eat and then it is a special treat. I am on a fixed income so fast food is another very special treat that doesn't happen very often. I don't bring snack foods into the house. I have ZERO self control related to chips and dips or snack mix. It is not pretty, so those things almost never come into my house.

So while I can gain weight easily, even when eating my restricted and allowed amount of calories, losing weight is truly an uphill battle. It is a little frustrating to have my dietician say,"If you are keeping a food journal and monitoring your calories, why would you not expect to lose weight?" She doesn't seem to believe me when I say, "History!"

I am committed to a two year weight loss program through my doctor's office. I am hoping that somewhere in those two years I can break the cycle of weight gain and lose some of this weight and keep it off. If that doesn't happen I am afraid that my only option will be to try weight loss surgery and the thought of that absolutely terrifies me. The thought of being this fat or fatter for the rest of my life terrifies me even more.

Before I came to write this blog post I went to YouTube to see if the song "Two Ton Tillie" was on there. It is. It came out when I was a kid and I used to sing it all of the time. It is NOT politically correct so if you are going to get offended please do not listen to it but it still make me smile because now I am "Two Ton Tillie" and I can't imagine doing the fandango or the tango like the girl in the song. The guy in the song still loves the girl even if she is fat so that is a positive. I can't see someone these days singing about loving the fat chick, can you?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIlBrhCi-Pc ~ Two Ton Tillie by Johnny Harper


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 1st, 2014 07:57 pm (UTC)

Considering that I'm trying to do the same thing, I feel your pain. I suffer from difficulty in not buying the trigger foods because I have been known to go to the store hungry. Bad habit, I know. Also, I tend to reward myself for actually managing to *get* to the store. It is an accomplishment most days. I have reduced my reward to Kombucha, however. Thank goodness, it is still enough to make me happy, what with fewer calories and all that probiotic goodness. But it's hard now that I'm living with people who are somehow doing Weight Watchers yet bringing home junk food. It's always there to tempt me. Arrrrrrgh.

I think you're right about the body trying to hold onto its fat cells. Say, if the body thinks we're going to starve because our Irish ancestors went through a potato famine and their bodies survived by consuming their own fat cells. Or if our Germanic ancestors once lived in a really chilly climate and needed more fat to stay warm. It's not to our evolutionary advantage now, but it could have been once. Anyhow, I was thinking it would be more difficult for some people to lose weight because of that.

I really wish you luck avoiding weight loss surgery, especially since it doesn't always work. I know one person who didn't lose any weight at all and another who didn't keep it all off. And then there are the side effects. Russ had to be hospitalized because the weight loss didn't stop when it was supposed to. At least I think that's what it was. He had complications, in any case.

I'm working and suffering right along with you, Sister!

Mer xoxox
Feb. 2nd, 2014 06:24 am (UTC)
Mer, first let me say that I am doing everything I can to avoid WLS. I know way too much about the complications and the other things you have mentioned. The ONLY person I know who has not gained all of her weight back looks almost anorexic sometimes. I think she binges and purges on occasion but mostly lives on diet Coke and not much of anything else. If I want to starve the rest of my life I will do it without having my colon rearranged.

Weight Watchers not only allows but at times seems to encourage the eating of junk food so you won't feel deprived and like you are on a diet. WW leaders will argue that WW is NOT a diet but rather a lifestyle. I agree that it is a lifestyle, a DIET lifestyle. Anyway I think they encourage the junkfood(they sell crappy junkfood at their meetings that is overpriced and made with artificial sweeteners)so that they can keep you coming to meetings for life.

I love WW meetings and if I could afford them I would go just for the group support. The meetings are not that interesting and seldom apply to me but being around people who are fighting the same battle really is helpful.

I have considered going to TOPS because the dues are only like $25 a year but all of the meetings in this area are at 10am. I am like you have got to be kidding. I don't like to deal with life until after 2pm. I am so NOT the morning person.

I haven't had Kombucha since it has gone commercial. I had some pretty funky Kombucha a few times back in the day when people were brewing their own because that was the only way to get it. These were not good experiences. Maybe someday I will try some commercial Kombucha but don't hold your breath. I am glad you find it to be a good reward for going to the store.

As for the "genetics" thing. I assure you I would be the last person standing in a famine. My body has an overly efficient metabolism. All the proof I ever needed for the was the fact that I had to live on bottled water with supplements for six weeks once because of really grody GI issues. I was seeing the doctor at least 2X a week to make sure I was not getting dreadfully ill because of not eating during that time too. I did not drop a pound one. Another time I spent 10 days in the hospital so sick that all I could keep down was a little Jello, the occasional Popsicle and some crushed ice. I was kept hydrated via IV. I gained weight. I guess my body thought I was starving to death or something. It is so frustrating but yet, I know I won't be taking food from someone who needs it more if a worldwide famine hits. Part of me wants to make other comments along this line but they get gross so I will let them die a sad death in the backroads of my warped and twisted mind.


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