Welcome to 'Keeping the Bulge at Bay'
This blog is designed to discuss the hardest part of losing weight...keeping it off! To understand my story and what my reasons are for creating this blog, please follow this link to my first post: "The REAL Beginning..." It's raw, real, and honest.
Hope you enjoy reading my posts, and please feel free to leave any feedback you may have!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

‘If it Ain’t Broke…Fix it Anyways!'

As everyone knows, summer is right around the corner (unless you’re from New England where summer was a few weeks ago and now we’re thrown back into the thrusts of a cold spring). This is one of my favorite times of year when the trees begin to turn green again, when the flowers pop their little heads through the (currently dusty and dry) dirt, and when skinny people start to wear less clothing to make it that much more obvious that they are perfectly fit (I promise, I’m only mildly bitter...)

However this spring is going to be a different one for me. Just like mother natures recreates itself this time each year-I decided I am going to follow suit! I think throughout any process in life, especially the process of weight-loss and maintenance, we have to recreate ourselves occasionally to make sure we are the best we can be.

When we discover the foods that work at ‘keeping the bulge at bay’, many times we tend to stick to these foods and don’t seek out new alternatives… Maybe this is a hidden, and extremely late New Year’s Resolution, but I have to mix up my eating.

Recently I have done a mini evaluation of what I eat, and the results aren't good (sounds extremely scientific doesn't it?). Now don’t get me wrong, I eat a lot of vegetables, fruits, and try to always stay within my ‘points allowance’ each day-standard maintenance qualities per being an old Weight Watchers member that continues forging down the road of maintenance no longer going to WW meetings. However, in evaluating what I eat I realized that I eat wayyyy too many carbohydrates and wayyyy too little protein.

Part of maintenance is preserving and upholding the healthy body you have worked so hard for. The way I’ve been eating doesn’t exemplify this. For example, I would literally go days without having any protein at all (insert my box of whole wheat elbows lasting me for two and a half days’ worth of lunch and dinners [with cereal as my breakfast] while my hubby-to-be was away...I was literally living in carb paradise!)

Any way you look at it however, that is NOT HEALTHY! So in classic ‘Rachel’ fashion, I went 180* the opposite way and decided that I was going to do a low-carb, high-fat eating regimen called the ‘Wheat Belly.’ Now in an effort to be entirely transparent, I have never been a huge proponent of a low-carb diet. From a maintenance perspective-maintaining a lifestyle like that forever (which is the ultimate goal in maintenance) is nearly impossible (I digress, yes-some people are successful but I believe it's rare). Additionally, keeping with the total transparency thing here, I found ‘Wheat Belly’ because I have had some stomach issues that not one freaken doctor on this side of the Mississippi seem to be able to diagnose, even after quite the myriad of tests. Therefore, I decided I would cut out WHEAT all together hopefully resolving my stomach issues...Oh, did I forget to mention this all began just this past Monday evening!

Fast forward to today, where in the last three days I have been on, I think, roughly 3 different eating plans. On Tuesday, I went low-carb and high-fat everythinnnggg. Let’s just say my body couldn’t handle it-I felt like $#!T and ultimately ‘quit’ 23 hours into it and gorged on reduced fat crackers-an ugly site, likely comparable to a drug addict getting their much needed fix!

Wednesday is when the realization hit me like a ton of bricks (in the form of tiny pep talks from my fiancé and two of my best friends). They helped me remind myself that, “this is maintenance, moderation is key!” Moderation is key…if I had a nickel for every time I heard that I would have more money than those damn mega millions winners-but they're right! Not just hearing this concept but absorbing it is pertinent!

In an effort to find true moderation, I am going to drastically cut back on my wheat to see if it helps my stomach, but other than that I’m going to restructure my eating so that it is truly balanced.

For this reason, I have decided to rejoin Weight Watchers for two months (honestly, they’re running a deal right now that is pretty amazing and the couponer in me just can’t resist!) I want to learn their new plan. WW’s new plan takes into account: total carbs, total fat, fiber, and protein. The plan my current eating is structured around is only taking into account: calories, fat, and fiber. I believe that my body deserves, and needs, a more comprehensive and balanced diet.

In the weight loss world I consider myself an old dog, and this old dog is hell bent on learning some new tricks! My first meeting is tonight and I’m excited…I’m eager to learn as much as I can, hear other people’s stories, and just see what meetings and the plan are like now...years later. We all need a good swift kick in the butt every now and again, and tonight is going to be mine! Trust me, maintainers all know how to eat healthy, but a refresher course can never hurt...

I have long lived under the mantra of ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it;’ but just because it ‘ain’t broke’ doesn’t mean that if you don’t try to tune it up, it won’t run better!

Here is a challenge I pose for each of you: evaluate what you’re eating! Yes, you may be successfully maintaining or losing weight, but is it from a balanced, healthy, diet? This is the one time to be a bit critical on yourself! Envision a nutritionist evaluating what your normal day-to-day eating is like, what would they say? [Only envision a nice, caring, thin/healthy nutritionist though ;) ….I hate nutritionists that give their ‘healthy advice’ but are extremely overweight themselves-so frustrating!] What did you find, and what would you consider changing? What tips would you lend to others struggling to find balance and moderation?

Until next time...keeping the bulge at bay!

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