For the first time in almost 20 years, I feel . . . . . ?
I’ve been grasping at adjectives for days to explain how my life has changed this past year. This afternoon as I stepped out of the shower, I grabbed a regular bath towel and wrapped it around my body with enough room to tuck it and modestly walk upstairs. I was flooded with the thought of feeling Normal. I can walk into any clothing store now and pick up a medium or large top and slide it on. Pants vary from an 8-12 but just about all 10’s fit, 12’s are loose. I’ve been used to vinyl camp chairs being one to two weekend throw away items. I was camping with friends and finally agreed to sit in their chair, and it didn’t bend. Vinyl didn’t split. I’ve had the same $8.00 pink chair all summer now. I’ve always wanted empty seats on either side of me at an event, as I go over the chair – and now there is space to cross my legs, and wiggle room. Is this how normal feels? It is the normal I remember before my thyroid went haywire and pre-diabetes set in.
Now my eating is for fuel more than the just tasting pleasure of comfort food. I just found an old menu from last September. Fruit smoothies, pancakes, Mac & Cheese, Frozen Pizza, Noodle Soups, Mexican Chicken, Dumplings, Pizza Bagels, Pot Stickers, Sloppy Joes, Meatball Sandwiches, Chicken Teriyaki, and a list of desserts – Cake, brownies, pineapple cake and cookies. Always on hand. All good healthy whole home made food. Made with love for my family. The best ingredients. Cooking all day. Every meal was dependent on Potatoes, Rice Noodle or Bread as fillers so that the boys would never be hungry, and we weren’t. We rarely felt a hunger pain.
What we did feel was tired. Anxiety attacks. Less than because of our size. Defeated. Trying too hard.
We started a huge physical fitness campaign. Move more every day. I felt very healthy. I’ve always felt beautiful, even when large. I’ve felt like I was doing everything I could do, and this was the body God gave me. I tried every eating plan out there, and they were all short term – nothing I’d be able to maintain for life or as a whole with my family. So I just moved more.
I started hearing about Trim Healthy Mama from my blogger friends while they were reviewing the book. I kept hearing ‘Low Carb’ and equated that with ‘Modern Day Adkins’ or ‘Christian Paleo’. I figured it for a fad and just watched from the outside. One blog that I follow is for my friend Julieanne, Joy in Our Journey. I watched her photos of the food she ate and couldn’t figure out what the ‘plan’ was. She ate carbs, rich fatty foods, wonderful deserts, amazing breakfasts, coffee drinks and smoothies. She came for a visit and I asked her about the plan. She assured me that she could eat just about any food –but she planned how and when she ate it.
I knew that weekend, in my heart down to my soul, that this was what I had been waiting for. I ordered the book from my local indie book store, read it over a weekend and started on August 2, 2013. My initial goal was to detox from Whites. No White Flour, Sugar, Rice or Potatoes. I knew I was addicted and needed it broken. After the first week I had lost 9 pounds. What? My whole face changed. I’d struggled for years to loose one pound. I cooked THM meals for the whole family. Switched my baking cupboard, changed all of our snacks and put them on the rhythm of the S & E Plan style of eating.
It wasn’t a huge ingredient difference, save for the absence of noodles, rice or bread at every meal. But the separating of the fuels – carbs or fats – was key to my body. It turned on my metabolism. I quit my required afternoon naps. I had more energy than I had had in years. My meals got healthier and healthier and my portions reduced, my meats lower fat, my vegetables abundant and my fruits more towards berries.
Now I see food completely differently. What others see as ‘healthy’ I see as Sugar Insulin Spikers. What they see as snacks – I see as unhealthy body destroying energy zappers. When did America move towards the sole goal of keeping kids full all the time at any nutritional cost? What we found, is after the boys quit craving white toast, pasta and rice – is that they ate less. They craved less. They needed less fuel. They’d eat their meal with us, and then be – satisfied. No more grazing all day long. I watch moms now at events and the park with their purses full of zip lock snack bags full of sugar/flour snacks. Kids constantly hungry, never full, always seeking to come back for another juice box or bag of gold fish. And now – I see. The cycle of craving.
During the last year – I have made a lot of changes. We have stayed to the original goal that I believe God put on my heart of “The Four Whites” being out of our diet for good. We enjoy Quinoa, Brown Rice, other Root Veggies, Sprouted Breads, Fermented Breads, Wasa Crackers, Dreamfields Pasta, Local Honey, Plant Stevia, and Coconut Sugar. So we still eat Bread, Pasta, Rice and Potatoes – but just not the whites. And we eat them on the S & E plan. In May my body said no more to Splenda. No more sugar free candies, diet soda, diet anything. My intestines are grateful. I haven’t had a sip of soda in 3 months, and that was a harder detox than the four whites physically and emotionally.
Physical changes – my arthritis in my knees and knuckles is no longer painful or swollen. My joints all feel smooth and working well. My face isn’t puffy every morning. My feet have shrunk 2 sizes. I have a neck – and collar bones. I have muscle definition in my legs, arms and back. Long gone are my 3x tops and 18W jeans. I just slipped on my son’s Medium shirts this week for sports. I am buying size 10 and 12 pants without a muffin top. I have one size 8 pants, but they are not flattering. I am no longer a slave to food cravings.
Well – this has gotten longer than I desired for a TrimAversary Post. Thanks for letting me rattle on. For my Metabolism with Thyroid and my family history, on both sides, with Diabetes – I have no choice but to continue towards health and eat this way for life. I am not a Purist. I enjoy corn chips and salsa. Hubby and I enjoy a nice wine or cider. We had a dessert together this week while the boys were away and we were on a date. It was amazing. I don’t feel like I am ‘cheating’ just making a different choice for that day. There is no longer an ‘on the wagon’ or ‘off the wagon’ feeling. It just feels – Normal.
Oh – for those who like to see numbers – I lost 40 pounds between August and January – and have kept it off. I am only loosing about a pound a month now, but my body continues to shrink.
Thank you for listening.