A Quick Overview Of My Health And Weight Loss Journey So Far

I’m not a huge complainer. I am 32 years old and so far have been blessed with general good health, a wonderful husband and a beautiful daughter without too many stressful situations in my life. I hear this from people all the time ‘You are big but you carry your weight well’. Girl I do it because I have to, who am I gonna leave the weight with?

I think of myself as a generally happy person, hardly jolly all the time but I don’t often lose my temper and I try to look on the bright side of life most of the time.

My body however has not always processed stress (whether physical or emotional) very well and the result has been for me to have a tendency to hold on to body fat. I have been overweight since I was a child of 5 or so. People ask me all the time if something stressful happened at that age but it truly didn’t  I just started gaining weight.

I went on my first diet at around 13 years old when my mum took me to the family doctor to see if she could help with my weight issue. Low fat was the only prescription in those days and I followed the diet faithfully for about week before it was abandoned. The rest of my childhood went by with short stints at dieting (usually portion control) that usually lasted less than 2 weeks. I never did lose any significant amount of weight.

At around 14 I decided to become a vegetarian which lasted all of 3 months, again without any significant weight loss. As an adult I discovered Atkins when it was all the rage circa 2001. I went on a near zero carb diet, I ate no vegetables my only carbs coming from a teaspoon of ketchup with every meal. I lost 8 pounds that first week and despite feeling tired and lethargic I thought I had finally found the holy grail of weight loss so I kept at it.

I lost 4lb in the second week and over the next 3 months, the weight loss was painfully slow. In total I went from 236 lb to my lowest weight of 201 lb. Inexplicably though at this point despite remaining almost zero carb, I started regaining and my weight finally settled at 214, a far cry from the permanent weigh loss Atkins promised! I am 5 6″ so my ideal weight would be between 140-150.

Unable to take the exhaustion of the low carb lifestyle any more, I added in some vegetables, to deal with chronic constipation plus nut based baked goods (low carb of course) to deal with chronic boredom with food. Slowly the weight crept back up. I’m not sure exactly when I threw in the low carb towel but eventually my weight went back to my starting point actually overshooting it and finally settled at 250 lb.

For the next ten years, believing that low carb was the only way that I would ever hope to lose even a little weight (despite the poor results the first time round), I convinced myself that maybe I hadn’t stayed on zero carb long enough or maybe I was doing low carb wrong, I wasn’t eating enough fat blah blah.

I continued trying to recapture the effect of my first low carb diet. But my body was on to me. My body remembers the low carb way of eating too well and resists it completely. Soon I was unable to last more than a week every time I resolved to low carb again. I must have restarted low carb 2 times a year for 10 years but was never able to last for more than a few days. The last time I tried, I couldn’t even manage a full day before my brain demanded food!

I tried weight watchers numerous times too and I was always able to stick to my plan but after losing a pound or two in the first week I was completely unable to get my weight to budge. I must have done 3 rounds of weight watchers at 3 months per time and never lost anything worth speaking of.

I went completely vegan for 6 months at some point, again, no weight loss. Even when eating McDougall no fat vegan style, I didn’t lose a single pound! I lost about 10 pound a few years ago doing the HCG diet but at just 500 calories per day, I was climbing the walls with hunger and needless to say, as soon as the week was over I regained that weight pretty sharpish.

Body December 14 2012

Body December 14 2012

Eventually I came to the conclusion that only weight loss surgery would work for me so I bit the bullet and had a gastric band installed. That was a year ago this past October. Actually I weighed myself on the 27th of October my 1 year anniversary and I weighed 250.06 lb. I weighed in at 250.8 lb right before I went for gastric band surgery!

I literally burst out laughing as I was writing this because it is so inexplicably ridiculous the idea that you can force your body into a diet with a band around your stomach! My body fought back by lowering my metabolism & body temperature so that I was freezing even in the summer. I also lost the urge to leave the house and do anything even resembling exercise hence keeping my energy expenditure low. The net effect is that I remained the exact same weight despite eating much less.

In late October I got all the liquid taken out of my band because it was serving no purpose. I now eat to satiety, sometimes stuffed-dom but my weight has remained the same, 250 seems to be my weight ceiling.

Oddly enough I don’t regret my decision to have the gastric band. I spent £6000 to have it put in and will probably have to spend the same to have it taken out eventually but it taught me a valuable lesson about my body. I can’t force it into weight loss by trying to manage my calories, carbs or fat. My body has to want to lose weight.

I will never stop trying to get my dream body, simply because the person who never quits, never fails so I am certain that eventually I will find a way. I’ve got a cunning plan in the works right now actually . . . more on that later.

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  • Krianne Thomasson

    Well in all honesty if your eating unhealthy (no matter what the diet) your body won’t be able to lose the weight even if it wanted to. Also if you go into a diet just to lose weight then your not going to stick with it anyway cause when you don’t get that instant gratification (losing the weight) that you want which causes you to move on to something else. When you change your diet do it to be healthier for yourself and a healthier example for your family. Even if you don’t SEE the results physically (if it truly is a healthy nutrient rich diet) you should FEEL the results physically. A good way to start is by cutting out soda and chips first that should get you a head start, then start buying more organic products instead of mainstream processed products (such as MEAT, eggs, milk which you can even switch to lactose free organic,soy, almond, rice or coconut milk is great also, organic fruits and vegetables which you can also switch from grocery store bought to farmers market, organic sugar, cereals and more! But be sure they are FDA approved) that will also get you going, next step is slowly but surely cutting down the snackage. Start replacing your snacks for more fruits and veggies and whenever you wanna snack make a smoothie (you can even add a little flax seed powder to them to make them more filling seeing as flaseed has lots of fiber), other good snacks are dried prunes, apple sauce, yogurt, grapes, berries, celery and apples with peanut butter, a quick little cheese and avacado tortilla drizzled with some honey, or even a tall glass of tea is very filling! MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL 8 8oz. Glasses of water at the LEAST is very important! And when you think about it not really that hard because majority of traditional bottled waters are 20-24oz. And that is 3 to almost 3 cups of that daily intake right there! And if you can’t stand the taste of bland old water (which I know I can’t) add lemon juice to it which is a great detoxifying agent or lime juice or orange juice! Even better get a pitcher of water slice up some berries pour in some honey stir and whala! You got organic juice! The possibilities with healthy food are endless and most of all you feel like you cheating all the time but you don’t have to feel guilty cause its healthy!!!! Those are some tips to get started eating healthy but the most important part about changing to a healthy lifestyle is STAYING CONSISTENT!!!!!!!!! At first yes it is going to be hard to be healthy ALL the time (which is why I listed this lifestyle in STEPS) but once you get the hang of it….it becomes habit you can’t help it!!!! But another important factor of dieting is of course exercise (I thoroughly dislike this portion as much as anybody but it is vital!). If you struggle with weight more than the next person (which I do also) you MUST do a good amount of cardio to see any significant weight loss!!! But this can be as easy as walking 30mins.-1hour a day except on sunday or taking a 30min. Dance or Kickboxing class (which makes you feel like your not even working out for as long as you really are!) But also weight lifting is important too (to tone everything up) but that gets as easy as 15mins of weight lifting everyday except Sunday or 30 minutes three times a week or even strapping on some ankle weights on you ankles and arms while your walking! I am a vegitarian (I also went vegitarian at 13-14 and now I’m 20) but I did it to be healthier! I lost 40 lbs 8-9 months after becoming a vegetarian (mainly because I was really what my mother calls a breaditarian cause I ate mostly bread lol) but I started cutting things one by one and adding healthier things to replace them and that is when I actually saw a change in my weight! I still to this day think I could be a little lighter but I don’t really think about it cause I eat healthy and I know my body is in general taken care of………(now could I stand to exercise more……..yeah…..and I am sluggishly adding the dreaded cardio to my regieme tho weight lifting is not an issue lol) but like I said when you eat healthy you have more energy and stamina and you visibly look better in health after your body detoxs and flushes all the gunk out of your system and maybe not imidiately but eventually the weight will come off!! Patience and consistency is key!!!

    • Hi Krianne, thanks for your very detailed response! Maybe I should have mentioned in the post that I do in fact eat very healthy (I think so anyway). I wasn’t brought up eating chips and chocolates daily and I haven’t had a soda for years! lol

      I genuinely wish that eating lots of processed food was my problem because I would know that I would drop a few pounds just by eliminating them but it’s not. All our food is cooked from scratch at home, I avoid vegetable oils, sprinkle chia seeds on everything. One thing that stuck with me since my low carb/paleo days was to limit sugar and eat clean (whole foods), we don’t eat out very often and my vitamix is put to really good use making soups and smoothies.

      Nope, I think for some people, myself included, diet has very little to do with how much we weigh. I genuinely believe that a mindset change on how I view myself and trying to improve my digestion will have more benefit to my weight loss journey than anything else. Ahh, it’s early days yet so I guess it remains to be seen. Thanks for you input though!

  • Lyly

    Great blog doll and best of luck on your journey – I’m inspired by your hair transition and will use you as my visualization to long healthy natural hair.

    Savor your weight loss have you ever considered the 30 day shred – I say the because it worked for me 🙂 27 minutes every day of a full body work out and you keep eating as healthy as you can : guaranteed it will wrk for youn! Google it to see some of the results out there : it s hard but oh so worth it. ( that Jillian Michaels crazy though )

    • Thanks Lyly. 30 day shred huh? Is it as evil as it sounds? lol. I will defo look into it

  • Lilly

    Have you checked your thyroid? Hypothyroidism can really affect weight and metabolism. Good luck on your journey, love your blog!

    • Thanks Lilly. I would love nothing better than to blame a wonky thyroid but no luck, thyroid works fine! 🙂 i think for me I will just have to do diet and exercise. .