Michelle in NJ

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Michelle in NJ

Postby Michelle in NJ » August 10th, 2008, 12:33 pm

Well, the time has come for me to start my own journal as I feel reasonably confident that I am with MF for the long haul....although when I think of the words "long haul" I get kinda depressed as I do have to lose a great deal of weight. I know it's all about one day at a time and one shake at a time, but....well we all want the weight loss "ordeal" to be over YESTERDAY. I'm much better off looking at it as an adventure and savor every little bit of progress along the way.

Anyone out there fantasize about all the "naughty" foods they are going to eat once they are "done" with MF? I do. Right now all I can think of is how great that first slice of pizza will taste. That's a totally WRONG way of looking at this program, I know. I love food and I always will. I don't think it's something to be ashamed of, as I feel that nothing is "bad" in moderation. However, since I was a kid it was never about moderation and staying active. It's been all about binges and lying around the house doing nothing. So I never got a chance to experience the joy of being able to look at food without some kind of extremist perspective.

I have decided to do 6 Medifast meals only, not the 5 & 1, although last Friday I did have a can of tuna (pure protein) b/c I was quite hungry. I'm not saying my way is better or that I'm "tougher" than the L&G folks, but at this stage of my weight loss history I need something super-structured.

This week is going to be kinda bittersweet. I am going back to work after being out of work for an extended period of time. I'll be doing customer service (as a long-term temp) for a large call center. Sigh....we need the money and I have tons of CS experience, so the job will be a breeze, but I REALLY did not want to go back to a call center environment. I'm grateful that I've had a chance to get used to MF before jumping right into the job scene as I finally have a routine established with my meals. Still, it's going to feel so funny coming home from work and not eating everything in sight, which is what I've always done.

I'm also selling candles for a direct sales company. I love the product but I am literally just getting started and I'm finding that you have to spend a little money in this biz to make money. It's a challenge to my self-confidence as I have always been too ashamed of my body to get involved in anything like doing home parties or craft shows. As my self-confidence increases through weight loss I hope it gets easier and eventually this could be something I could use as a full-time source of income. In the meantime, I am enjoying the blast of super-concentrated candle fragrance I get every time I open my supply closet!

My fingers are also crossed for this opportunity I have to work at home as a virtual call center rep in the social service/political science field. The company reviewed my resume and has asked me to submit a sample of my writing in the form of a fictitional letter to Congress. Yikes. Since they want it on a certain topic, this is going to take a fair amount of research and polishing before I'd care to submit it. This would be a chance for me to earn the same amount of money working from home as I would having to commute to the call center, so it's something I really want. But if it's not meant to be, I believe it's just not meant to be.....I believe that in the end, it's all up to God, and if something does not work out the way you had hoped it would, it's best to anticipate that these is something even better for you further down the road.

I remember reading in a Geneen Roth (she has written many books on compulsive eating) book, "No binge is wasted if you can see the lesson in it." That also leads me to remember 2005 when I starved myself for nearly a year. Yes, I lost weight quickly, but I never addressed the thought patterns that caused me to overeat in the first place. I gained it all back and then some. Now, I am determined to "get the fat out of my head" as well as off of my body. I will be 40 years old next July and God willing this is going to be my LAST year on earth as a fat lady. The thought of turning 40 years old and STILL being fat, after being fat for virtually an entire lifetime, is incredibly painful and demoralizing. I so want the latter half of my life to be healthier and happier than the first half was, and I know I can reach that goal if I can "see the lesson" in why I shoved so much food in my mouth in the first place.

I have had some terrible problems with back pain lately and I've just come back from doing a little shopping with hubby....there was SOME back pain, but in the 12 days I've been doing MF I can already see an improvement. I am also doing ab crunches on a fitness ball--my abs are so weak that I was only able to do 25 or so at a time, but I have quickly built up to 150-200/day. I can't do them all at once, but I'm thrilled with my progress. My body seems to be happy, too, and I can't wait for the time when I can go out shopping or for a long walk and not have to sit and rest every few minutes because of the pain in my back. I highly recommend the fitness ball--it's fun and enjoyable to use, but make sure to get a good quality ball. The cheaper balls do not hold much weight--the last one I had claimed to hold over 250 pounds, but I ended up breaking it and I was lucky that I didn't get hurt. The one I have now is rated for a whopping 2000 pounds of pressure and I have had no problems with it. So with the fitness balls, you really get what you pay for.

I never thought I could manage to drink the minimum 64 ounces of water a day, let alone 100+, but I'm doing it! I'm finding that my mouth is very dry lately and I'm hoping that's a sign of my body being in fat-burning mode. My doctor told me that my body will adjust and I'll be in the bathroom less, which I didn't believe, but to my relief, it's happening.

I am also using some calorie and carb free "flavor drops" that are adding an extra punch to my shakes....right now I have Double Chocolate, Dulce de Leche, and my favorite, Orange Creamsicle. These are not syrups or extracts but actual food flavorings that you can add to any of the MF stuff. I was not able to find a retail location for them so I had to order online, but I am very satisfied with the product....you can check it out at www dot capella flavor drops dot com.

Well, there's not much else to say on this rainy Sunday--I'm just killing time until my next meal and, as always, trying to stay as motivated as possible. I'm really looking forward to finding some MF buddies on this board and reading your comments and feedback here...which I encourage 100%! I'd love to hear from you.

So it's one shake at a time, one meal at a time, and the weight loss "adventure" continues.... :D
Michelle in NJ
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Postby nickieluv » August 10th, 2008, 1:02 pm

Wow - you are really going through some changes right now. I can relate. Good for you for being so committed to MF even with what must be a stressful time.

I can tell you about the pizza/bad stuff - it doesn't taste good anymore after a while on MF. So when you reach goal you might decide to have a slice, but it will be disappointing. When I went off, I had to re-learn my taste for some of the most horrible things I used to eat nutrition-wise. Why would you do that, you ask? Because the emotional/habitual tie to those foods has virtually nothing to do with how they taste, and everything to do with how you remember feeling when you ate it.

After being on MF and learning how much better your body feels when you take care of it, I bet you won't want to re-learn those bad tastes again. It won't be easy but the rewards are much better than a lousy pizza. :D

Welcome and here's to our success!
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Postby jayzoe » August 10th, 2008, 5:30 pm

I can totally relate to the "I can't wait till I can eat again!" thing, I feel like that a lot... I try to remember that even when I can officially eat again, it's still on a limited basis, I can't go nuts anymore like I used to, I'm working on that food relationship thing, it's hard!

anywhos, best of luck in your journey, we're all working hard together!!!
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight -- Proverbs 3:5-6
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Postby SharonR » August 11th, 2008, 6:03 am

Michelle, great to learn a little more about you! You are going through some changes and why not include your health in that, right? :)

Girls, for all you who are craving pizza, I beg you to go try the "I can't believe it's cauliflower pizza" recipe that I posted here. I had it again last Firday and let me tell you, it really does fill that void of not having pizza.

Also as times go on the cravings go away, if out faithful to the program. Good luck Michelle, you can do this!!!

Oh and I was curious, if you want to share, if you don't that's fine. But you mentioned in my journal who you and I had about the same amount to loss. Did you look at my ticker closely? I have over a 150 pounds to lose. lol
Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

Start Weight 326.7 ~ My short term goal will put me at 250!

Started June 19th 2008. First Mini Goal 76.7 pounds.
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Postby Michelle in NJ » August 11th, 2008, 4:22 pm

Happy Monday Everyone,

Well, where to begin? Sharon, you asked me about weight loss. Maybe I'm a bit smaller than you after all, I'm wearing a size 24 or so right now, but I told myself I'd like to lose at least 100 pounds. I may end up having to lose more. It doesn't help that I have a broken scale, but to be very honest, that cliche of "being big-boned" really does apply to me. That has worked either for me or against me, depending on how you look at it....I "carried my weight well" (another cliche!) but I carried it so well that I was getting further and further in denial about how big I was getting.

Reality really reached out and slapped me in the face when I saw myself reaching for the 26/28 sizes at The Avenue and other plus-sized stores. My religion (Islam....although I'm a pretty darn cool and open minded Muslim, I must say! :D ) requires me to dress in modest, loose clothing. I'm totally OK with that, but then I found the 22/24's getting tighter and tighter. The I thought if I "upgraded" to a 26/28 to stay modest, it was only a matter of time before I'd be hitting the 30/32 section....and that's usually where it ends for the plus sizes. Naturally, I was in total denial thinking that there was NO WAY I'd ever outgrow "Lane Giant." Thank God I got on plan before THAT demoralizing disaster happened.

I've noticed that a lot of people who are losing weight have a goal of not having to shop in plus sized stores anymore. Well, at this stage I'm so big that it's hard for me to imagine anything otherwise, but I know it's possible. I used to yearn for the day when I no longer had to buy anything marked "Plus" or "Women's." But now, thinking about where I may be when I get down to a healthier weight, I'm OK with it. I wear my clothing pretty loose anyway, so for me it's not about the tight jeans or the bikini. When I think about my ideal size, given the size and shape of my body, I think of a size 12--and maybe even a size 10 after my tummy tuck (don't get me started on THAT problem! :x ) There are gorgeous plus sized clothes out there, so I'm still OK with wearing maybe a 14/16 if I saw something I liked that fit me the way I wanted to. I guess that's an advantage for me--even before I converted to Islam, I have always hated wearing tight clothing.

Still, from what I've heard from the ladies who have gotten "thinny" as Nancy so whimsically says, the selection of regular Misses size clothing is much better than Plus....well duh, of COURSE it is--I was at the mall the other day and the ratio of Plus stores to Misses stores was FAR from being equal! I also have a lovely shalwar kameez (long tunic and pants) outfit sent to me from my Pakistani in-laws that is WAY too small for me. Why? Because I was ashamed to tell them my real measurements, and the outfit turned out to be a lot smaller than it should have been. How sad. I suppose that is one of my goals, to finally wear this beautiful outfit.

My in-laws, (I haven't met them yet), constantly beg me for pictures but I refuse to send them any, which only confuses and hurts them, and embarasses my husband. They have seen me exactly ONCE, in a photo where I am seated and covered in a very loose black abaya (robe) that had acres of fabric for me to hide in. Photos of me are about as easy to find as authentic Abe Lincoln photographs. Again, pretty sad. Thank God my hubby hates getting his picture taken, anyway.

The good news is that thanks to MF I am finally headed in the right direction. Tomorrow will be my 2 week anniversary on plan. :yes: If you had told me 2 weeks ago that I would have made it this far I would have laughed in your face, because those first few days were rough to say the least. But now....well, I'm not going to say it's smooth sailing because it's not. I still struggle with intense cravings and I'm totally impatient about getting this "over with." Yet, I seem to be making progress! Yay me!

Another cool thing about MF is now I feel totally prepared for Ramadan coming up next month. This is the time of the year when observant Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset every day for an entire month. Is it tough? Well, like MF, the first few days are tough but then you get used to it. I don't need to go through those rough first few days because I have already done them (in a way) with MF! I am going to try like heck to stay on plan during this time....I'll eat half of my food at sunrise and the other half at sunset. Believe it or not people can actually GAIN weight on Ramadan because they choose to stuff themselves at sunrise or sunset....or both. The only thing that I am a little scared about is that you are not supposed to even drink water during the fasting hours. That, more than anything, is the most annoying thing for me. Your mouth and lips dry out and one can imagine how yucky your breath gets. Looks like I'll be doing a lot of chugging at my morning and evening meals!

I honestly don't know if it's realistic to expect to stay on plan during Ramadan, but I firmly believe that God works in wonderful and mysterious ways. Still, if I am not getting enough food outside of the fasting hours, I'll have to go off plan next month. But I'm still going to focus on L&G food instead of the starches and sweets that are traditionally served at the evening meal.

In any event, I'm happy, and looking forward to celebrating my 2 week anniversary tomorrow! :mrgreen:
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Postby Lauren » August 11th, 2008, 4:46 pm

Happy anniversary, Michelle!

So, I was thinking about the Ramadan issue, and I am most concerned about the sheer lack of calories to get you through the day, and then not having a desire to eat everything in site at the end of the day. My suggestion may be to split your L&G between the morning meal and the evening meal, so you get about 3.5 oz of protein plus green in the a.m., and then the same in the p.m. Maybe that could help sustain you?

I'm Jewish, so I celebrate Yom Kippur, and that's just ONE day of fasting, not a whole month, but the first year, when I was on the full MF plan, I actually didn't fast, I stuck to MF. I don't know about Islam, but in Judaism there's a rule that if it's for medical/health reasons, you don't have to fast, and god knows losing weight fell into that category! But last Yom Kippur, when I was on maintenance, I did fast, found it a bit tough, obviously couldn't exercise, but survived it.

Certainly you can do it, but be really cognizant of your mental/physical state, you just might have to do a 4&2, so that you can have a full L&G in morning and night, to get you through. And that way you may prevent a binge proactively...

Just my 2 cents.

I can't wait until you can send your pic to the in-laws - I am sure they'd love you regardless, though, you're married to their son, so don't be ashamed, be proud of the life you've created!

Best,

Lauren
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Postby DogMa » August 12th, 2008, 7:43 am

I was going to post the exact same thing, Lauren!! Great minds ...

Anyway, welcome, Michelle and good luck!!
Robin

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Reached goal in August 2006
Added BodyBugg in May 2009
New ticker: 136.6/123.2/130
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Postby BiggerInTexas » August 13th, 2008, 10:11 am

Hi, Michelle! Welcome to MF! Congrats on your first week on plan!

I did MF last year and lost a lot of weight, but I slowly drifted off plan and gained quite a bit back. So this time, I'm back to take it all the way to goal! The first time around, I looked at MF in a similar way - I just wanted to get through it and have the weight loss journey be OVER. This time, my mind-set is totally different, but it took a long time to get here. Now I know I'm on this journey for the rest of my life.

It took me so long to accept it, that I'll never be able to go back to eating the way I did before (without looking like I did before I lost any weight). Somehow surrendering to the fact that this was a life-long plan was so hard, but once I did, I started craving the foods I was "missing out" on a lot less. I absolutely still have days where the old me gets in a hissy fit and I wanna eat what I want, when I want, don't get me wrong! But it's a lot less than the first time around, when I was trying to get through it, get thin, then go back to eating as I wanted to. Reading the journals of folks on maintenace really helped me a lot to change my mindset, and to see this as a "rest of my life plan" instead of a "just 'til I get there" plan.

About a month ago I had one of those days when I was really struggling with wanting to eat what I wanted. Another MediFaster gave me some advice: She told me that as soon as she started MF, she decided in her mind that there was no other food than MF food. She lived in another universe where MF was the only food, and none else existed. This made sense to me - when other food isn't an option, I started craving it less, 'cause I didn't spend any time thinking about it. I thought that was great advice, so I thought I'd pass it on!

I hate having my pic taken, too. But since I got married 2 years ago (almost 3 now!) my in-laws have been begging for pics. So I made it a special deal - Penney's had a special on pics around Valentine's Day, so we went in and took several outfits to change into and did several different poses. We also took the dog (the first "grandchild" on either side ;) ), which made it fun. Taking an animal or prop helps bring the focus of the pic to the prop. My favorite pics were of us wearing all black with a dark backdrop, up close (from chest up). Just some ideas - you might get some pics you can feel good about and that will make your in-laws happy 'til you feel more comfy will full-body shots.
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Postby Lauren » August 18th, 2008, 6:33 am

Morning, Michelle -

You haven't been back in several days, and I just wanted to check in with you to make sure you're doing okay, and smooth sailing. Even if things get/got a little rocky, don't disappear, come here for help and support, everyone here knows the ups and downs of the experience!

Sometimes people feel like they can't post their struggles, but that's when the forum can be most useful.

Cheers,

Lauren
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Postby nickieluv » August 18th, 2008, 9:16 am

Lauren's right - I post almost nothing but struggles and I haven't been kicked out yet. :lol:

Hope you're doing well.
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