Taking Control of My Body Clutter

A few years ago, okay 10 years ago, I purchased a book called Body Clutter off of the Flylady's website (http://shop.flylady.net/pages/FlyShop_bc.asp). It was a defining moment in my life when I decided to seek out ways to lose the stuff that hindered me from getting my life in order: my own body, self-esteem, and mindset. The book empowered me and got me started at doing what I needed to do. I immediately lost 25 lbs by changing the way I saw food and how to get my body moving. I lived in Minnesota at that time, where I had a Trader Joe's (http://www.traderjoes.com/) and a large (very large) dog park that were easily accessible (meaning, close to home). 

However, I moved back to Indiana (rated one of the unhealthiest states in the US - http://www.businessinsider.com/these-are-the-10-unhealthiest-states-in-the-us-2013-12) and the body clutter soon packed itself back on. It didn't help that I entered a relationship where eating out was the norm; I no longer lived near a Trader Joe's or a dog park; I no longer ate healthy. But, I was determined.

During my first year back in Indy, a LA Fitness (http://www.lafitness.com/Pages/Default.aspx) was built near where I was living (with my grandparents at the time). So, I took my registration fee and my $34.99 a month dues, and joined the fitness craze that was taking Indy by storm. I still didn't live close enough to the local Trader Joe's (nearly 20 miles away), so my grandparents and I decided to try the Flat Belly Diet (Available here at Barnes & Noble). The food was great, and the water concoction you drank (mostly cucumber and ginger) were not bad and helped with bloat. I wound up losing 12 lbs of the 25+ I had gained since moving back from Minnesota. 
Halfway through The Onion Factory's program

But that didn't last long. The relationship took over and the weight just kept creeping on. I had gained over 50 lbs since moving to Indiana. Then a friend told me about a place called The Onion Factory in Anderson, Indiana (http://onioncamp.com/Onion_Camp/Welcome.html). The diet was rich in protein, low in sugar, high in good carbs, and low in bad fats. They prepared 6 of your 7 days of food, encouraged you to drink protein drinks 2 to 3 times a day, and to get your body moving. I started out with their 8 week boot camp style program and lost nearly 18 lbs in 8 weeks. I wound up losing over 50 lbs within my time there.

The sad part is that I injured myself on a bike ride and could no longer exercise for a long period of time. The distance of the Onion Facotry (over 35 minutes away in another city) made it difficult to continue the program, so I had to stop until the injury was healed. Within that period of time, I had regained that 50 lbs and plus some, because I did not stick with the food portion of the program. My mental state was diminished in the process and I wound up being hospitalized for a week due to it.

Me at the Foam Glow 5k in September
Here we are nearly 7 months since I injured myself (and 5 months since a cure was found), I am back at it. I could not rejoin The Onion Factory due to finances and distance (I was traveling 26 miles in the opposite direction on a daily basis). So, I decided to talk with a physician in my PCP's clinic that specializes in weight loss and binge eating disorder, or BED as it is called (something I learned that I struggled with for a long time, but did not realize it until now). 

I found out in the process that I also have Metabolic Syndrome X, a precursor to Type II Diabetes. Since diabetes runs in my family (both sides), the doctor is taking this serious. So I've been placed on Metformin, a pill that helps lower blood sugar, and has a side effect of weight loss, to help control my blood sugar. I purchased a blood sugar monitor to help in the process.

The eating part of the diet is very similar, if not the same, as that of The Onion Factory, so I'm very familiar with what is needed to be done. The only exception is that I'm allowed more dairy, legumes, and other fruits than what I was eating on the other diet. I still try to walk and use the elliptical as much as possible, but with my busy schedule, 5am in the morning is the only time I have the ability to do this. And let me say that getting up at that hour is more difficult than it seems.

So far, I have been yo-yoing between 5 to 7 lbs in weight loss. It is difficult to get in the right foods, since again, I'm in another relationship where eating out seems to be the norm (sigh). But we're working on it together. I'm learning what foods and where are the healthiest (did you know that Fazoli's has a terrific salad with strawberries, almonds, and grilled chicken and poppy seed dressing that is low in calories? Hard to believe, I know.).

I am already feeling healthier and getting my mind back under control. I use SparkPeople's website for encouragement, nutrition & fitness tracking, as well as a little friendly competition (check out the website here - http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/start-now-sa.asp). I have a healthy support system to help me in this journey. I have been told by everyone in my life that they just want to see me healthy. So, I know that I have the encouragement from everyone in my life. I have the tools in my weigh-loss toolbox, so I can't say that I don't have everything I need.

One last note. I participated in my first 5k race since my injury in September. According to the timer at the finish line, we finished in 90 minutes exactly. However, we were in the back of the pack, so it took us nearly 15 to 20 minutes to cross the starting line. So, I'm pretty positive that we were walking a 20 minute mile (3.0 mph) throughout the race. It was the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. A program that is very near and dear to my heart (literally). I have people in my life who have both survived and lost their lives to the deadly disease. Our team reached it's monetary goals and everyone on the team competed and completed the race. I'm looking forward to the next race. I plan on doing the Color Run (okay, I walk) and the Foam Glow 5k (which I did in September of last year). 

If you think you can't do it, think again. There are too many people who are inspirations for losing weight (see the SparkPeople website for their success stories). I encourage you, to get fit and active today. That's all it takes. I now have a Fresh Thyme (http://freshthyme.com/) within walking distance of my home, as well as a LA Fitness that Google Maps only gives walking directions for from my home. It's starting to warm up outside, and I also live within walking distance to paved greenways (which are popping up all over in an effort to make Indy a healthy state once again). I can do this. So can you.