Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Day 36 - how many tears in a lb?

Because I must have shed enough to take my weight down last night.

It was the WI at the end of week 5 and it's now inescapable that I'm not averaging enough weight loss to achieve the 3st in 100 days, far less the 4st goal I'd set myself. To make 3st you have to lose on average 3.5lbs a week. My losses are steadily falling and are now below 3lbs - next week on this trajectory could be about 2lbs and I can't bear to think any further than that:
End week 1 = 7.7lbs
End week 2 = 4.1lbs
End week 4 (inc week 3) = 6.5lbs
End week 5 = 2.8lbs

I went in to this because I saw an ad for LL talking about a "guarantee" of 3st in 100 days and that gave me confidence to make this massive change. When is a guarantee not a guarantee? When it is, in fact, an average. Which means I'm balancing out all the people with fantastic losses - which is great for them but very sad for me. And when I say sad....well, I started crying on the way home last night and pretty much kept going until 11pm. I've heard all the platitudes - 'you couldn't have done this another way', 'at least it's coming off' (and variants thereof) - but I actually find this diet very very hard every single day and I can only cope with that if I feel I'm achieving something. I'm going to carry on for the 100 days but it's with a very heavy heart and the knowledge that I'm likely to achieve about half of what my goal is. And that's after a week where I'd really upped my exercise levels and hoped to see a pay off for that too. Have to go now or I'm going to start crying again in the office and I'd hate that.

PS My LLC was basically hopeless - a whole raft of platitudes but no practical help and she got quite narky about the metabolism point that my specialist made. Still believe him over her and her handbook. Still, she's so bad at the counselling that I can't expect much in that way from her. I'm sure she does her best.

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Day 29 - beginning of week 5

Had WI last night and lost another 2lbs - that's 7lbs in 2 weeks so at this rate I'm only just meeting the "guaranteed" 3st in 3 months. And I really want to lose 4st (or hey, more than that would be great too!). With this in mind, and in the rare event of a rainfree morning, I walked c2.5miles in to work today. I have been feeling very weak and listless but it was fine and I'm determined to do this when it's not raining. I'm trying to entice someone from my class to walk back a bit further (c4 miles) a couple of evenings a week - if she's not keen I suspect I could enviegle b/f into it. And all this depends on the weather - so not wildly optimistic! I had a look at the long range forecast and apparently it may stop raining in mid August!

We looked at reasons for eating last night. We had longer than normal for our counselling - about an hour. But it's not very good quality. The LLC (whilst nice I must emphasise) just reads out what's on her printed sheets from LL - in a voice that you might use to read a bedtime story to a small child. You don't feel she really understands what she's saying and it means that it's less of a discussion where you engage fully. So I try (in true nerdy eager style) to really try and think about the themes myself, separately. I definitely eat when I'm stressed - have had two occasions recently where I was longing to (my brother's permanently crying baby and a bad day at work) and found it really hard not to. But whilst I can recognise that I find it harder to work out what to do - yes, I didn't eat but I would still want to in a similar situation. Also, to treat myself - esp if b/f is out - I think out a nice menu which usually ends in chocolate eclairs. That would be 2 eclairs because that's how many there are in a box. And I also eat when I'm mildly unhappy (but not utterly miserable strangely), fed up or bored too. So whilst I have the self awareness to recognise this I'm not quite at the point where I know what to do about it other than not eat - a bath is not going to do it for me by the way. Know lots of people go for this but I'm not interested in this as a treat. This is something that I hope will unravel with time.

The other thing I've been thinking about is clothes. I'm finding the whole concept is beginning to get quite stressful. I would describe my style as 'damage limitation' more than a choice and I'm aware that if I am successful I will have to think again. I read Gok Wan's How to Look Good Naked avidly and picked up lots of tips but it still makes me anxious and stressed to think of trying to put it into practice. Why? I don't know, but it really, really does. I also find the whole sizing issue bewildering. I have a range of skirts, all the same size, some are practically falling off me and others are a bit too snug - what's that about? How are you supposed to know what size you are? I suppose it's the move from finding things that are "good enough" in that they cover me, are nice colours and a reasonable shape to conceal me, to actually having to be more discerning and having more choice - taking me out of my comfort zone (and I'm never good at that). One thing I am looking forward to though is buying a swimsuit for our holiday in October that isn't some ghastly matronly thing (you KNOW what I mean). I hope I'll be a couple of sizes smaller by then.

Monday, 23 July 2007

Day 28

I am still getting the adverse effects of being on this diet - I'm not that bothered, it's a price I'm willing to pay, but I am soooo looking forward to being energised. I am cold, light headed and weary, with occasional leg cramps. But worse is the constipation! As someone who ate far too much fruit this is not something I have ever suffered with. And I wasn't bothered that I hadn't been to the loo for a week as I assumed there was nothing much to expel (trying to be delicate here!). But it came to a head on Saturday morning when I felt that I did want to go to the loo. After a very painful 45 mins I staggered out of the bathroom and collapsed on the bed (en suite so not far to wobble), feeling like I do when I'm sick - hot and cold, shivery and sweaty. B/f (who is wise in the way of these things) said my body had gone into shock. After about an hour I was well enough to have a shower but I felt washed out for the rest of the day. I confess that I did weigh myself though and I am anticipating some result at WI tonight! But what a price! I took a ducolax on Saturday night to try and sort myself out but my body violently objected and I went the other way. There must be a solution.... My LLC is a nurse so I will consult her whether there is a laxative for wimps that I can take.

Anyway, after sharing far too much.....!

I went to a pop in on Friday, set up because the scales had broken at the last proper WI. If you recall, LLC's bathroom scales said I'd lost 7lbs in the last 7 days (I liked these scales) but as I suspected, they were completely wrong! After an additional 4 days it was actually 5lbs - so 5 lbs in 11 days. I was glumly thinking that it would average as 3lbs for the last 2 weeks but my (ahem) bathroom activities at the weekend lead me to hope for maybe another 3lbs tonight. Yes, really.

Pack-wise - I can't face the vegetable any more and I didn't have any chocolate this week (I really don't like it as hot chocolate which I cannot understand) but the Thai which I was a little ambivalent about is actually nice-ish. It has bits in it! Not the lumps you understand, they are my own unintentional addition! I also bravely tried the raspberry as a crushed ice milkshake but half of it went down the sink. I'm trying strawberry this week (probably as mousse). And a fruit bar to make as biscuits. I tried the toffee bar and lemon bar as biscuits and whilst they're better than as bars I still don't like them.

I told LLC about my plans for my birthday and she warned me off the nectarine. With a heavy heart I think she's probably right (sugar in the form of fructose). I'll have some cold chicken for lunch and a small steak in the evening with chicory (she said I could have a green salad).

I had a stressful Saturday helping my mother look after my nieces. The 2 year old was okay but the baby (3 months) was a nightmare. Nothing we did would stop her crying and it drove me insane. Reinforces my determination never to have children though. Sunday I read the new Harry Potter. Then I started reading it again! I'm halfway through for the second time now. It's the best book yet and I'm so glad that J K Rowling is there as a role model for young girls - make yourself rich by your own talent and imagination, not by marrying a footballer or prancing about pretending you can sing.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Day 23 - specialist info

Today has been enormously stressful at work. There is a solitary piece of strawberry rock on our snack table - I want it so badly it almost hurts. I know it's just a reaction to stress but that doesn't make it any easier. I picked up the jar and looked at it. Then I put it down but it's still playing on my mind.

So, not least to distract myself, I thought I'd report back on some very interesting information I got yesterday. I see a weight loss specialist (NHS). He is an adorable mad professor and we always have interesting chats and he's really frank and bullsh*t free. I hadn't seen him since I started LL but he knew all about it and said it's probably the best of those VLCDs. But he said his main concern was that he said it depressed the person's metabolism so that it became very easy to put all the weight back on once you finished the diet (he said it was proof that there is no god!). I told him about Management and he agreed that it would help but he said it would take 9 months for someone's metabolism to recover. I thought this was very interesting given that LL say that your metabolism only decreases in proportion to your reduced body mass. And I have to say I believe my specialist as he doesn't have anything to sell. I have a low metabolism anyway - the age old excuse used by so many is actually true of me (or as lovely Dr C said "Miss P, it's cards on the table, you may not want to hear this but you have been grossly disadvantaged by your genes and there's nothing you can do about it"). I said I'd have to make sure my portions were small (and, I was thinking, GI friendly) for at least the 9 months. I asked about drugs to raise my metabolic rate but there are none - or at least no safe ones that the NHS would prescribe. He said the only thing you can do to raise your metabolism is exercise. I said once I'm not paying for LL I might be able to afford a gym (he said he'd seen patients who had had spectacular success from using a personal trainer - but they were all men. I said that that simply showed that if there was a god, he was definitely male!). But actually I can't afford a gym whilst I'm on management so I'm fretting about this already. I have a way to go yet but this clearly will be an issue for me (I am SO not running).

After my non-WI WI on Monday they weighed me on a similar looking set of scales. From that, in a week and a bit, I've lost 1lb. I hope to god it's wrong as that would just be utterly choking. I'm going to have an official WI with LLC on Friday - but again, if it's not the same scales it still may not be precise. But it will be another baseline ready for forwards.

My specialist said that he'd be happy if I lost more slowly than the norm on LL (because of the effect on my metabolism). I told him I wanted it off as quickly as possible. I hope I'm going to be the happy one at my next appointment in January!

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Day 22 - and the titles are back, hurrah!

Forgive me viewers, it's been a week since my last confession. Er, I mean blog.

And it CAN'T be put down to time flying whilst I'm having fun!

I'm still feeling very fatigued but the headaches have eased a bit which is a real relief. I was taking one or two of my very strong prescription migraine drugs a day and it still wasn't getting rid of the headaches. Drying my hair is still a struggle though!

WI last night was a real damp squib - the scales were broken. They brought in a pair of ordinary bathroom scales but they showed that I lost a fraction under 8lbs - which sadly I'm pretty confident isn't true for several reasons: 1) on my scales at home it showed more like 1-2lbs (although my scales are bizarrely random and this would be a bitter disappointment) 2) I've not lost that much even in week 1 and 3) another girl lost 6lbs on them and she had only had small losses to date too - and had had pizza (although if you can lose 6lbs a week on pizza sign me up!). I'm not sure if the scales are being repaired or replaced but I do feel that you need to have the same scales all the time to really see what's going on. But if I have only lost 1-2lbs I will be devastated. I don't find this diet easy and therefore I want a decent pay off for it!

I also developed an aversion to the vegetable soup - I can literally feel my gorge rising, which is quite interesting as I've never known what a gorge was. I still don't know but I can certainly feel it hurtling up towards my mouth! I have to say I'm finding most of the packs difficult to get down (I suspect chocolate will be joining vegetable as intolerable) but I'm determined not to give in to my thoughts ("Maybe I could just do it on Bouillon and/or miso soup and stop the soup packs entirely"). I have decided however that on my birthday at the end of August I'm not going to make myself miserable on packs. I've read that you stay in ketosis if you have less than 50g carbohydrates so I thought I'd have a shake for breakfast, some ham for lunch and 2 chicken drumsticks and - bliss - a white nectarine in the evening. I think that sounds sensible. Of course it's the pschological damage it might do with wanting food. But I do anyway! B/f is very wary - he says if I break the diet after that I will have to re-pay him all the money he's contributed to my weekly fees. Fair enough I suppose. I have no intention of not sticking to the 100 days though - not least because we've booked the flights now for the first bit of our holiday in Turkey in October. What do you think about the birthday feast? Am I being sensible (in terms of indulgence) or delusional?

I had a horrid 'fat' experience last week. I was meeting b/f in the park and was early - and by some bizarre quirk of fate it wasn't raining. So I sat on a bench with my book. A middle aged woman came and sat on the other end of the bench. She was, I'm afraid, very badly dressed (opaque American tights with open toed ugly sandals for instance) and rather overweight - but not grossly so. Some young Meditteranean tourist boy came and sat in the middle and there was much laughing as his friend took a photo. I don't think I was being oversensitive that the intention was to show how unattractive British women were - a big joke. It really stung and I wished I'd got up and walked away. But you always think of these things AFTER the event.

On the plus side, one of my denim skirts is now too big to wear and my usual t-shirts look overly baggy and swamping (and therefore not flattering). The thing is that I find it quite hard to believe as - depending on the scales situation - I may not have even lost a stone yet (if my scales are right. SURELY I must have lost at least a stone in the first 3 weeks. Pleeeease.). And as I want to lose quite alot of weight (5 1/2 - 6 stone) that's not a significant proportion. But I am cautiously pleased. Fingers crossed for those new manual scales to be right all along - you would see the rare sight (on this diet) of me actually being very happy!

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Day 15 and STILL no title options!

Well, I've not so much as fallen off the wagon as got dragged along behind it for a bit. I ate a chestnut from b/f's stew last night. The GUILT is overwhelming! I just grabbed it and ate it so fast I didn't really taste it or enjoy it (or even chew it properly!). I've looked up how many calories in a chestnut - 24 - and I just hope it won't make much of a difference.

I think I did it as I'd had my WI and only lost 1lb since the pop in on Friday - taking my total for the week to a very unimpressive 4lbs. And that was week 2 so it's going to slow down yet further - argh! My goal of losing 4st in Foundation looks increasingly unlikely. I had hoped that the walk on Sunday would bump it up a bit (and secretly and not at all healthily, the two occasions where I only had 3 of the 4 packs). Our LLC told us last night that the 3st is not a guarantee (I'm sure I saw somewhere that it was) but an average - so there are people who don't lose 3st. I'm very worried that will be me.

I'm still going to stick with Foundation and I suppose I'll have to see where I am at the end but given the pain (admittedly mostly psychological) this diet causes me I want a decent return for all my effort.

I think that LL is still getting harder for me. I am having dreadful headaches and today my arms were so tired I could barely hold my hairdryer up. I had noticed with pleasure (and possibly a fair amount of smugness) that I hadn't felt tired in the first week - but I think it's getting me now. LLC said you can get the side effects in week 2 or even 3. Serves me right! But hopefully once this is behind me I might get that energy rush - or at least feel brighter.

I tried the CD mixamousse last night, as mentioned on minimins. I put it in a banana shake in the hope it would miraculously transform into banana angel delight. Not wholly surprisingly it didn't. It wasn't even as good as a banana shake with loads of mushed up ice. So my £12 on ebay was a false economy (and irritatingly I found out that it's £3 from CD so I was well and truly ripped off - ah well.) I didn't eat it all but I must not keep missing packs. The LLC said if we miss a pack we should have 5 the following day! There is no way I could or would do that. So I must try and stick to 4 (all day walks and shopping trips aside!)

Monday, 9 July 2007

It won't let me put a title - but Day 14!

Well, such a lot has happened since I last wrote. Actually that's a lie! My life is pretty empty these days as my social life revolved around food.

But. I had my pop-in on Friday and had lost 3lbs - so I am plodding slowly away. One of these days I'll have a WI that will make me ecstatic! Maybe. It was nice to see the others - one poor girl had only lost 1lb and it was her first week! I hope she'll see a significant change tonight.

The weekend wasn't too hard, sometimes I did feel hard done by but these feelings passed. I have to say I am still craving food. I literally have to keep such a tight grip on myself not to eat all the time. I so nearly stole a chestnut out of b/f's stew! I doubt it would affect ketosis but I think it would make it perilously easy to have more - and more and more.

I am also having stinky headaches - something I tend to suffer from anyway but they are definitely worse. But I know that I have to just go through this and hopefully they may even disappear as I lose weight.

We did a walk on Sunday - it was only 5.5miles on flat ground but I felt shattered. I definitely notice the difference on the restricted calories and really trudged round feeling like a had a big weight on my chest. I'm glad I did it though - it was almost 2 days of packs in calories! I took along a nut bar for the first time. BLEURGH! It was so foul I had to spit my mouthful out - how can anything purporting to be edible be that vile? I imagine even my mother's greedy labrador would reject it!

I'm not getting on with bars generally - I had the toffee (bearable) and the lemon (horrid - and such a disappointment as I usually love anything lemon). In one way this isn't so bad - I know they're slightly more calorific than the packs - but they are useful for when you're on the go. So I ended up only having 3 packs again yesterday. I can see how tempting it is to skip a pack every now and again and hope that it makes a difference on the scales but I'm sure this is a bad idea. Just can't work out how!

I am amazed that I've been doing this a fortnight - can't quite believe I've managed to hang on all that time. I'm pleased with myself that I've stuck to something I find so tough and I am optimistic that it will get better - quite soon. Just keep thinking about that holiday - spending a diproportionate amount of time thinking about the food actually! But Turkish food is pretty healthy and I'm determined to be sensible - plain chargrilled chicken/fish and salads and hummous and babaganoush and the like of course but no desserts and little if any booze. Roll on October!

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Day 10 - double figures whoo hoo

I had yesterday off work and felt quite cheerful for the first time since I started LL. I went shopping and bought some new shoes (was planning on ballet pumps but just bought the How to Look Good Naked book and Gok was so severe about this that I bought pointy orange slingbacks with a small heel) and a new skirt. I have this skirt already and love it and since it was very reduced I bought it 2 sizes smaller since I'd have my existing one taken in - and for £20 it would probably be the same price to have my existing one taken in in x weeks anyway. This was very optimisitic of me as I still can't quite let myself believe that this diet will work for me.

I messed my packs up rather though. I had coffee and vanilla for breakfast but didn't want a soup before I went out 2 hours later. And I was meeting a friend for coffee in the evening so didn't get back until 8.30pm - when I really couldn't have had 3 packs before bed. So, in summary, I skipped one. I know, I know, this is not good practice. And I made it worse by cooking one of the remaining 3 - I had a chocolate muffin (yuck) - so had half the nutrients I should have done. But! A week ago I definitely couldn't have gone from 11am to 8.45pm without anything so that's good. And shows that although I still battle with hunger it IS getting better - just in small steps. I had taken a bar (reserved really for a weekend 'treat' - although the other people in my group say they're not nice at all) for emergencies but didn't want to eat it in public. I think what I've learnt is to plan ahead more carefully when selecting my packs for the week. And if I'm shopping all day (admittedly a rare occurence) cut a bar up and put it in a plastic bag to dip into anonymously.

I was intrigued to read about Courtney Love's weight loss in Grazia this week. 3 stone in 4 months or similar - pah! I thought, I know many a mini who's trounced that! Does sound similar though as she has meal replacement packs for breakfast and lunch.

Pop in session tomorrow night. I'm working tonight so won't be in work tomorrow - next posting will be on Monday (before that evening's next weigh in, gulp).

Tuesday, 3 July 2007

Week 1 - tick

Last night was my first weigh in - I couldn't make the pop-in so it was also my first chance to check on the ketosis situation. I found peeing on a slip of cardboard absurdly difficult and when it came out a rosy pink I was concerned as I thought it would have to be pale pink to qualify. But apparently all was well. I suppose given that I'd stuck religiously to LL that I would have had to have hit ketosis but my body's pretty tricksy. Which brings me to the weight loss - 7.7lbs. Now I know this is half a stone and I know that on WW or similar it would take me 2 months to reach that - but, but, but... Well, I read enough blogs and minis postings to know that people seem to lose 9lbs - 1st. And so I was hoping for more. Especially since I have found this week very tough, both physically and psychologically (today on our snack table are mars, milky ways and haribo fizzy sweets mmmmmmmm). And the girl I sat next to lost 9lbs and she has less weight to lose than me - don't get me wrong, I was pleased for her just a little disappointed for me.

Of course, I won't let it discourage me fundamentally - I'm pressing on - but it makes it just a teensy bit harder (I'd soooo love a mars). And I know I mustn't get my hopes up about week 2 weigh in as the first week is the more dramatic (I can go to the pop in this week). But I posted on minis and got lots of support which helps.

B/f had rung and left a lovely message on my voicemail last night before the meeting, wishing me luck - that was very nice as he's always pretty flat out at work doing important stuff and to even remember that I had the meeting was very sweet. He can't believe I'm disappointed with 7.7lbs - and pointed out that I clearly hadn't lost a stone as it would show.

I know that the time will pass and I'll look back on this and it will seem insignificant. I want to enjoy our holiday in Turkey after 100 days is up, feeling happier about myself and less inhibited. That's my goal I suppose (she discovers with faint surprise). But the ones I was thinking of were:

1) Losing 4 st in Foundation (less sure about this after my distinctly unstellar loss this week)
2) Getting to 9st8lbs (smack bang in the middle of my BMI healthy range)
3) Wearing a size 14
4) Being able to wear - and, crucially, look nice in - a dress

Onwards and upwards! Or rather downwards I suppose!

Monday, 2 July 2007

Day 7 - And it's crunch time

I survived the weekend, integrity intact (in other words still pure of heart and empty of stomach)! I would say I was a little less physically hungry but I was monsterously psychologically hungry. I seriously contemplated stealing a carrot (cooked with butter and ginger) from b/f's plate when he left the room. I was sat there with a chicken "muffin" - bleurgh, foul (and fowl, geddit?!). It was, as I have read on other blogs, harder to get the water down too.

I have a probably delusional plan for weekends though. B/f buys me 3 bottles of different as-posh-as-poss water which I treat like wine and just have with dinner on Fri/Sat/Sun as a 'treat'! Absurd! I'm also planning to have bars on Fri/Sat/Sun this week as an additional treat (ie not have them at other times). I have to force myself to have soups - I'm hungry but I just don't like the thought of having them. It's okay when I do although I do feel a bit nauseous afterwards - a side effect I'm confident will pass.

I did an unofficial weigh in and by my (admittedly odd) scales I'd lost 4.5lbs in 4 days (it also said I'd lost a stone and a half a couple of times but this is the scales' weirdness and I fear is unlikely to be true - boo). I know this is heaps more than any other diet but I did feel a little disappointed as I'd read so many accounts of people losing about a stone in the first week and I clearly won't. Still, hopefully I'll have lost half a stone tonight at the official weigh in. I'm also very nervous about ketosis - am I in it? Am I not? I do have very cold feet but it's England in July so duh. But I don't have this surge of energy (oh yes please) and hungerlessness - or (I believe) stinky breath. I know that I have played this by the book so I ought to be okay but I don't trust my body not to let me down.

I'll update tomorrow how I got on in the weigh in and counselling meeting. I feel nervous! Wish me luck!