General Diet Plans and Questions - Mrs. Jim

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03-22-2001, 10:41 PM
Hi! I just noticed your 99 lb. weight loss. WOW :cool: How did you do it? Have you posted your weight loss adventure here? I would love to hear how you did it if you feel like sharing. Way to GO!!!

03-23-2001, 12:09 AM
Thanks so much for your kind words, Judi!

I do have a website (haven't updated it in a couple of months though - I have been superbusy!). If you want to see it, just click on the menu bar of this post!

I was 265 in early 1990, prior to being accepted for a weight-loss study at Stanford University. The 18-month study on weight loss maintenance had hundreds of participants, since it included 12 weeks on the Optifast program which normally is extremely expensive to do - but accepted participants would only pay $500 for the study - $350 of which we would get back at the end of the study, just to give us an incentive to keep participating (I guess). At that time, I was truly desparate and highly motivated to lose weight. By the end of the 12 weeks, I was down to 2071/2; at the end of the study I weighed around 180. Please don't take this as an enthusiastic "thumbs up" for Optifast, though - a good portion of part of my group didn't last the entire 12 weeks - others started gaining back weight very soon after the fasting stage was over, or stopped showing up for our mandatory group sessions. Those sessions were extremely informative - since Stanford had all the latest medical knowledge about diet and exercise.

I know one thing for sure - if I were to stop exercising, I would not be able to maintain a weight loss. The first thing I would recommend to anyone is to find a type of fat-burning exercise you enjoy doing - preferably two (one indoor, one outdoor) types of exercise...In a heartbeat - I would recommend Jazzercise as a terrific way to start moving! I felt incredibly graceful after a month of Jazzercise - more than I ever did taking ballet lessons as a girl (since I was usually the heaviest - and clumsiest - in my class).

To me, my perfect weight would be 140-145 - it's such an effort to get there and stay there for me that the notion that I "should" weigh 125 at 5'4" is ridiculously unattainable, unless I cut off an arm!

03-23-2001, 12:46 AM
Thanks for replying Mrs. Jim. You are so inspiring and encouraging. I know exercise has got to be the key. It seems to be the same in most of the success stories.

You should be so proud of yourself!! When I read that someone has actually done it, it makes me stiffen my resolve which this last while has been waxing and waning.

Thanks again and ALL the VERY BEST wishes!!

03-23-2001, 06:18 AM
Hi Mrs Jim! I think you replied to one of my posts (thanks!), but I thought I'd drop you a line about this one. Wow! 99Ib, that's really amazing! 125 at 5ft4 is quite low - I'm 5ft6 and would like to be 136, but 140 would do it! I'm 144 at the mo, so hopefully not too far to go. Keep up the really great work Mrs Jim - you're an inspiration to us all! I'm going to check out your website now for some extra oooomph - I'm sure I'm going to be really impressed! YOU CAN DO IT! (And I'm sure you won't have to lose an arm!)

03-23-2001, 12:21 PM
I was wondering why you were mentioning my "99 pound loss" until I saw my signature - I should have put 265 as my high point, not 255. I know it's only 10 pounds but I like to be accurate!!!

I'll be out of town this weekend - Jim and I are going to the Sea Otter Classic. Got to admit that I'm kind of scared about tomorrow's race! This will be my first bike race ever - I'm just going to hang in the back and do the best I can...

03-23-2001, 02:57 PM
Good luck for your bike race! Let us know how it was. You will do great because you are already a winner!

03-23-2001, 04:29 PM
The title "diary of a fat housewife" on your weighty reading page reminded me of a "desperate housewife's diet" I found in some used book store once. I think it was from the 1970's or 60's. It said you should diet only every other day. So, your "diet" day you drank 6 glasses of fresh fruit juice. Here's the really laughable part...your "eat normally" day was somewhere along the lines of 1200 calories when it was all added up. I can't remember exactly what you were supposed to eat, but there was a lot of wheat germ and nutritional yeast. Also, you were supposed to take kelp supplements because the iodine would stimulate your thyroid. I can't believe I even entertained the idea of doing this now! Just had to share some of the wacky stuff I've seen!


03-26-2001, 02:48 PM
Carmel Valley was gorgeous - so was Laguna Seca. Even though we didn't spy Clint (I think he was playing golf this weekend) we did see many famous cyclists (not Lance Armstrong, though).

We stayed at a little place on Carmel Valley Road called Los Laurales Lodge - which used to be the Throughbred horse farm of one of the Vanderbilts in the 30's. At $79 a night, it was a great deal - there are lots of horse farms and wineries within walking distance and the valley was so beautiful, with the fog lifting every morning.

As far as my bike race went - AACK! I got lapped after the second lap and had to leave the race. Each lap around Laguna Seca racecourse is 2.2 miles and there is 300 ft of climbing involved in each lap.

Once I got a look at the other gals in the race, I knew that I didn't have a snowball's chance to keep up with them - I learned that "amateur" doesn't necessarily mean "beginner" in road bike racing. Most of these women were triatheletes with years of experience. Fortunately, most of them were quite nice and offered a lot of friendly advice!

So for now, I think I'll stick to centuries - I'm much better at endurance/long distance than I am at sprints!

We both had a great time overall though.

03-26-2001, 11:56 PM
Welcome back and I tip my hat to you Mrs. Jim. Good for you for trying something that difficult! :cool: I am patting myself on the back for getting on the treadmill tonight!

03-27-2001, 03:11 AM
mrs. jim
I doubt that I would even have the guts to enter a race. You did and that says alot about your self esteem. How much has weightloss contributed to your self esteem? or were you always confident? Confidence does not come often to me, I am usually very tentative about any new thing.

03-27-2001, 10:36 AM
Hi Veg -

So, have I always been self-confident? Actually I don't believe I'm all that confident now, but definitely more so than in the past!

When I weighed over 200 pounds and was in my first marriage, except for work and going to the store, I rarely left the house. Consequently, I ballooned up to 265 pounds.

On Saturday at the beginnning of the race, I saw the other women who were participating - and almost quit right there. Luckily Jim convinced me to at least give it a shot!

My opinion is that we are not born with self-confidence and self-esteem - we earn and develop it through accomplishments through our life. I definitely feel that getting down to where I am now (aack, got on the scale and I've gained a pound - TOM partly responsible for that!) is the greatest accomplishment of my life!

03-27-2001, 04:52 PM
Mrs. Jim could you give an example of a days eating for you? A typical one and how much time do you spend exercising? Thanking you in advance.

03-27-2001, 05:51 PM
As far as exercise, here's my usual schedule:

Six mornings a week, I go to the gym and do 65 minutes on the Precor EFX (keeping my heart rate at 75-85% of its maximum). Four of those mornings, I usually work out with weights (alternating between lower and upper body). On Mondays and Fridays I do a Spinning class for 45 minutes instead of weight training (after my Precor workout).

Jim and I also enjoy bike riding and ride on the weekends, depending on our schedule (I usually spend all day Saturday at school - at least this semester). We're also signed up for a couple of metric centuries so far this summer.

As far as eating - I usually have cereal or oatmeal in the morning with a banana, lunch is pretty freeform - dinner is usually either a salad or veggie sushi. I try to keep my calories around 1600 a day.

03-27-2001, 08:36 PM
Thanks! But just as a I feared you do a lot of exercise. Now what I want is a success story that someone just sat on the couch and played with the remote control or lost weight by reading (but reading very fast)...just kidding.... I know that is not how it is done. Good for you though, you must feel deserve to! Thanks again and all the best!

03-27-2001, 10:40 PM
...but I actually enjoy my workouts - the days I don't work out, I just feel blaaaah.

I haven't always been an exercise nut - gym rat- whatever you want to call me!

I've said this before but it's important to find an exercise that you ENJOY doing, preferably two exercises - a 'cardio' type of exercise and a 'sport' type of exercise (for instance, I enjoy the Precor EFX for cardio, and bicycling for 'sport'). And don't forget weight training - it's easy to get started and there are a lot of books and resources out there with easy to follow routines - I would recommend Joyce Vedral's books right off the bat.

If you don't feel comfortable enough exercising in public (fears of being in an exercise class with a lot of very slender women!) I highly recommend finding an exercise class especially geared towards larger-sized women (and men!). At 265 there was no way I was going to go into a 'normal' aerobics class - luckily Kaiser Permanente had a "Great Shape" movement class that helped me to rediscover my body!

A terrific book to read if you're fat and haven't really exercised in awhile (or want to learn more) is titled "Great Shape: The First Fitness Guide for Large Women" by Pat Lyons and Debby Burgard. It doesn't focus on weight loss, but on living an active lifestyle regardless of your weight.

I've also mentioned Jazzercise frequently. You can get a coupon for a free Jazzercise class at their website - - what do you have to lose? It's great fun!

If you're going to purchase accessories to motivate you to get moving, I suggest two 'musts' - a heart rate monitor and a portable CD or tape player! Burn your own CDs or make some tapes with the kind of music that will keep you moving and motivated. Or try "books on tape" if you like to read while you work out (most people's workout intensity goes wayyy down if they're working out while reading).

Set an exercise goal - my goal last year was to do a metric century and climb Half Dome in Yosemite - I did two metric centuries (62 miles each) and didn't get to the top of Half Dome BUT we did make it to the shoulder before acrophobia set in on my part! :) There are lots of exercise-related events for charity - runs, bike rides (from 11 miles to 600+ miles in length!), etc. Jazzercise does lots of "Workouts for Charity" each year, and I'm sure they aren't the only ones who do so!

Whoops, going on too long again - have to start dinner...