A New Lease on Life
One year ago today I started on a life-changing journey. For those of you with ~100 lbs to lose (or lost), you know what I mean. My goal was to lose 115 lbs. I was in pain, had difficulty moving around too much, was largely sedentary, and was just getting worse. I had spent the summer recovering from foot surgery, which added to problems of being sedentary. I decided in early June that I'd start this diet when we returned from vacation in late July. Then I started reading/learning. In my first 6 weeks on IP, I lost 21 lbs. Talk about motivating!
Along my IP journey, I've had some setbacks but I have never lost my focus. I was put on steroids, which stopped my weight loss for a month. I had an injury that caused inflammation that did the same. I developed thyroid problems, which I have learned can happen to some people if we stay on very low carb diets for a long time (be sure you are being medically monitored if you have a lot of weight to lose and will be P1 for more than 10-12 weeks!). Due to the thyroid problems, I stopped consuming soy and gluten, which caused me to give up some of my favorite IP foods back in January.
After cycling off and approximately 6 weeks of phase 3 & 4 and a month-long vacation out-of-state when I did not weigh (and my clothes fit the same!), I restarted P1 yesterday. Since I stuck with IP while giving my thyroid a much-needed rest, it really didn't feel like I was restarting anything.... Just a continuation. No feelings of deprivation. Some of this surely is due to careful planning.
I plan the next day's menu before I go to bed at night or while I'm cleaning up from dinner. I plan ahead to make sure there are enough veggies in the house and they are prepared in ways that will not cause boredom. I planned so much that I lurked on 3FC-IP for over a month before starting IP. I knew what to do and had few questions when I met with my coach for the first time. I also figured out the informal "rules" on the board prior to my first post. I read every recipe thread I could find (now they are all grouped in the first post of the daily). I planned my transition to P3 well in advance so I'd know exactly what to eat. I made plans for times that will cause increased temptations (parties, tailgates, BBQs, special events, holidays). I make sure I have packets for emergencies tucked everywhere: my car, DH's car, my desk at work, in my lunch bag, in my purse. I also carry a refillable Brita water bottle with me so I don't have to worry where I'll get water and I have extra shaker bottles.
I have seen many people reach goal in my year on IP. We all lose weight at different rates so I've learned not to compare my weight loss to anyone else's. It is not a race.. Unfortunately, I have seen many more never reach their goals and I am determined to join the former group, rather than the latter.
I will be on P1 until goal or Halloween, whichever comes first. If Halloween comes first, I'll give my thyroid a longer rest and do p3-p4 with a planned January P1 restart. I don't consider it restarting IP because IP is a four phase program. If I stick to the program, I'm still on IP. My coach calls Phase Four "Phase for the rest of your life". This is how we get to maintain the wonderful gift we've been given: a new lease on life.
Losing weight is hard. Maintenance is hard. Being fat is hard. Pick your hard. (-Ishbel)