Saturday, November 27, 2010

The numbers are in!

First thing's first... how did everyone do on Thanksgiving? I cheated on the NuLean diet and had some non-green veggies & plain baked chicken or fish grub, though I didn't eat anywhere near as much as I normally do. In fact, I put so little on my plate (and couldn't even finish that), that my MIL looked a little offended. When I explained to her that I'm dieting & the protein shake tends to leave me on the full side, she relaxed. A little. MIL may be a nurse by day, but when she's at home, she's a badass cook and she loves to share her delicious creations.


Fridays are my typical day to post, but I wanted to wait until I saw the doctor today and got my official numbers before posting anything. Are you ready?

Before (13 November 2010):
Beginning weight at Dr's office: 199 lbs
Beginning weight on bathroom scale: 193 lbs
Waist measurement at beginning of NuLean: 42"

After (27 November 2010):
Ending weight at Dr's office: 187 lbs
Ending weight on bathroom scale: 181 lbs
Waist measurement at end of NuLean: 37"

Total weight lost: 12 lbs
Total inches lost: 5"

I wasn't able to exercise as much as I wanted to... the elliptical machine is still sitting in a box in the corner, waiting for me to move my books and the stupid bird cage so I can set it up. I know it seems like a sad, hollow excuse, but I really have been super busy with work and school and family life. I'm constantly moving around and on my feet though, so at least there's something.

While I'm very happy with the weight I lost, I don't think I'll be doing another session with NuLean until after the New Year. I'm supposed to be going to my dad's this weekend, and my stepmom is a fantastic cook. I won't be eating as much as I normally do, but I do plan on eating more than the boring diet you have to follow on NuLean.

I'm so excited about being in the 180s... I haven't been in the 180s since after I had Monkey! I'm going to keep eating healthy, walking as much as I can, and making sure not to make the same mistakes I made in the past. I will NOT balloon back up. I don't look good and I definitely don't feel good when I weigh that much... 242 is NOT healthy.

Friday, November 19, 2010

one week down, one week to go...

I've been on Nu-Lean since last Sunday. The meal program can be found here, but basically on the first two and last two days of the week, I'm allowed to eat only watery green vegetables, drink protein shakes, and take some of their cleanse stuff (which is a bunch of vitamins in liquid form). It kind of sucks because I want chocolate so bad right now, but at the same time, being on a diet as strict as this one is good - because I'm not eating everything in sight (which I tend to do when Aunt Flo is visiting).

On days 3-5, I'm allowed to have chicken or fish for dinner. Baked. No butter or salt or sauce of any kind. I can have a squeeze of lemon on it for flavor. Because I'm unable to eat plain baked chicken (it literally makes me vomit), I baked it in chicken broth. I was able to finish it, but I think I'll stick to tilapia with lemon from now on.

Day 1, I weighed myself at home (because the doctor's scale and mine are so different) and came up with 192. I taped my waist and then had PK do another measurement to make sure we got the same number. We did - 42 (oh GOD how did I get to a 42" waist?!).

It wasn't hard on day 1. I wasn't all that hungry, I had energy, and there wasn't a lot of temptation in the office or at home. I made sloppy joes for dinner for the family, which smelled awesome, but I was content with my protein shake.

It started to get more difficult on day 2 because I was craving meat so badly, but I managed to resist. Day 3 was easier because I was allowed chicken, but by day 4 I was craving bread and pasta. I ate a ton of broccoli for dinner and 2 small tilapia fillets (the meal totaled less than the 600 calories I'm allotted) and was full.

But (yesterday) day 5... Oh GOD, day 5 almost killed me. They had sausage at work that smelled so good I almost clawed through the wall to get to it. My boss & co-worker went to Bullrito's for lunch and brought the leftovers up to my friend who was visiting me... and who left it on the desk next to me. I made pizza for dinner since PK wasn't going to be home and I wanted something quick & easy that I wouldn't have to fight Monkey to eat. She ate half of the pizza (it's fairly small), and the rest sat on the counter staring at me. Taunting me. Begging me to eat it.

I managed to resist the pizza, but when I got up to snack on some Brussels sprouts, I did grab a small piece of chocolate bar. I'm sad that I gave in to temptation, but at the same time it was something I needed. I had a crap day, Aunt Flo is a bratface, and I was in a bad mood. So I had a very small piece of chocolate. I'm pretty proud of myself that I didn't eat the entire bar (because it is quite a large piece of chocolate), nor did I go through the pantry & fridge and eat everything in sight like I wanted to. Yay for resisting.

I have an appointment with the doctor tomorrow to see my official progress and to discuss how I'm feeling. Today, I weighed in at 187 on the scale and my waist is measuring at 40 (39 if I stand up straight & suck in). That's 5 lbs and 2-3 inches in a week. Can you imagine what I'd be able to accomplish if I were actually exercising? (I really do plan on setting up the elliptical - I just have to find a place for all my books! And the stupid birdcage).

How has your week gone? Have you given into temptation?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Plan is There is No Plan...

And, well who wants to plan to fail? Not me! So I went and looked around to see what the experts say on how to survive the holiday on a diet. Here are some of the best practices I have found from around the interwebs:

Trim back on the trimmings (WebMD) Go all out and deck the halls with boughs of holly, glitter, and lights, but when it comes to holiday food, accessorize with care. To shave calories, go easy when adding nuts, cheese, cream sauces, gravy, butter, and whipped cream -- additions that don't add much to the meal, but can add plenty to your waistline. Trim calories wherever you can so you leave the party feeling satisfied, but not stuffed, recommends Carolyn O'Neil, MS, RD, author of The Dish on Eating Healthy and Being Fabulous.

Have a low-calorie snack before leaving for a holiday party. (Suite 101) Arrive fashionably late at cocktail parties so you miss some of the temptation to eat more. Position yourself away from the food. Find someone interesting to talk to.

Be active! (Associated Content by Yahoo) The mistake that most people make during the holidays; don't stay in all day sitting down or laying down. Consider going for a walk at the mall, or perhaps doing some visiting around with your neighbors. Don't stay sitting down for more than an hour at any time, unless you're sleeping.

And well, we all know that we have to survive the workplace minefield of holiday parties, potlucks, and well intentioned goodies brought in by co-workers. Remember at work you are battling stress and fat! Here are a few workplace ideas:

Have eggs for breakfast or lunch! ( Because they contain all the essential amino acids in the perfect portions for humans, eggs are the highest quality protein available. In fact, they're the most effective at increasing nitrogen stores in muscles, making them firmer so they burn more calories even when your body is at rest. Eggs also an ideal food when you're trying to keep blood sugar and cortisol under control: Their satiating protein and healthy fats prevent fat-trapping blood sugar spikes and they're loaded with vitamin D, a nutrient proven to reduce cortisol production.

Plan a counter attack. ( Prepare your own large platters of fruits and veggies. Place them next to the goodies and every time you walk past, grab a veggie instead of the candy. Even if you only take the healthier snack half the time, you’re making an improvement.

Now, I want to know. Are you planning to use any of these strategies? Got some of your own? Or are you throwing caution and your scale to the wind and enjoying the holiday season? I want to know!

Update: I had to drop by and add my awesome news! I hopped on the scale, and despite Aunt Flo's visit this week I am down 5lbs! Woo! Hoo! *happy dance*

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Trying another route

I usually post on Fridays, but I had a big Veterans Day event at work and didn't have time to get to a computer. Yesterday was a whole big ball of crazy (appointment at 9, jewelry party at 10:00, and 2 year old nephew's birthday party at 2:00) beginning with my doctor's appointment at 9:00.

I went to the clinic to see how I'm doing on the Phentermine and to get my prescription refilled. I ran out a few days ago, I've been super-stressed because of work & school, and Aunt Flo's getting ready to visit, so the eating (especially of chocolate) has been a little out of control. I know I could have demonstrated some self control, and I kind of did... I mean, there's actually some chocolate left in the house...

I can't make excuses for myself. I have a problem when it comes to food and stress. Both Dara & I have talked about emotional eating/dealing with depression and stress before. It's not easy to get off that roller coaster. But I have to.

Yesterday while at my doctor's appointment, I discovered that I'd lost some weight, despite not working out over the past month. While it is a cause for celebration because I'm back under the 200 lb mark it still sucks because it's only 6pounds in the span of a month. I know I can do better!

I talked to one of the doctors last time about a product called Nu-Lean (that he's used before and had excellent results). It's a very strict diet (and I mean very strict) but it's to cleanse your body of toxins. And let's face it, I need to cleanse my body of all the shit I put into it. I opted not to do the Nu-Lean last time because I wanted to see how I'd do on the Phentermine and because Nu-Lean is kind of expensive. This time, I opted to do it. I can afford it right now, and I need to get over this stupid plateau. I haven't been able to get under 190lbs even when I was exercising and eating right all the time.

I start the Nu-Lean program today (the menu can be found here). It's going to last for 2 weeks, which means I'll be doing the cleanse during Thanksgiving so I won't be able to indulge in all the food. Which, let's face it, is probably a good thing. Also, I'm not a huge fan of turkey so it gets me out of forcing it down my throat to pacify the family.

Today on my list of things to do: put books I won't read again any time soon into boxes and in storage. Move the giant ugly ass bookshelf to the Dumpster downstairs (it's warped anyway). Set up the damned elliptical in its place. USE IT. Also, clean the rest of the house because holy hell, I let things pile up while I was pulling my hair out over all the tests I had last week.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Turkey Day Dilemma...

My DH loves...LOVES to deep fry a turkey for Thanksgiving. You would think he was from the south. This year my mom is coming from Mississippi to see us, so all the more reason for him to go nuts and pull out the deep fryer. Now, I love it too-- but I know it is not healthy. How could it be?

So, as always here is the dilemma: to deep fry or not to deep fry? That is the question!

Here are two recipes I found online with nutritional information to help you compare:

Southern Deep Fried Turkey (click name to see original recipe on

Yield: 12

Ethnicity: New Southern American

Meal Type: Main Course, Entrée

Occasion: Thanksgiving, Superbowl, Fourth of July, Christmas

Preparation Method: Deep Fry

Product Type: Whole

10 to 12 Pound WHOLE TURKEY, non self-basting
2/3 Cup prepared vinaigrette dressing
1/3 Cup dry sherry
2 Teaspoons lemon pepper seasoning
1 Teaspoon garlic powder
1 Teaspoon onion powder
1 Teaspoon cayenne pepper
As needed peanut oil (See note below)

  1. Remove the giblets and neck, rinse the turkey well with cold water and pat dry thoroughly with paper towels. Take care to dry both inside cavities. To allow for good oil circulation throughout the cavity, do not truss or tie legs together. Cut off the wing tips and plump little tail (as they may get caught in the fryer basket).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix vinaigrette, dry sherry and seasonings together. Strain the marinade.
  3. Place the marinade in an injection syringe. Inject the marinade in the turkey breast, thighs and legs.
  4. Place the bird in a large food-safe plastic bag, refrigerate and marinate for at least 2 hours. Turn the bag and massage the turkey from time to time.
  5. Drain the marinade from the turkey and discard marinade. Place the turkey in the fryer basket or on a rack, neck down.
  6. Place the OUTDOOR gas burner on a level dirt or grassy area. Never fry a turkey indoors, in a garage or in any structure attached to a building. Do not fry on wood decks, which could catch fire, or concrete, which could be stained by the oil. (Safety tip: have a fire extinguisher nearby for added safety.)
  7. Add oil to a 7 to 10 gallon pot with a basket or rack. At the medium-high setting, heat the oil to 375 degrees F, (depending on the amount of oil, outside temperature and wind conditions, this should take about 40+ minutes).
  8. When the oil temperature registers 375 degrees F on a deep-fry thermometer, slowly lower the turkey into the hot oil. The level of the oil will rise due to the frothing caused by the moisture from the turkey but will stabilize in about one minute. (Safety tips: to prevent burns from the splattering oil wear oven mitts/gloves, long sleeves, heavy shoes and even glasses. It is wise to have two people lowering and raising the turkey.)
  9. Immediately check the oil temperature and increase the flame so the oil temperature is maintained at 350 degrees F. If the temperature drops to 340 degrees F or below, oil will begin to seep into the turkey.
  10. Fry about 3-4 minutes per pound, or about 35-42 minutes for a 10-12 pound turkey. Stay with the cooker at all times as the heat must be regulated to maintain 350 degrees F.
  11. When cooked to 165-170 degrees F in the breast or 170-175 degrees F in the thigh, carefully remove the turkey from the hot oil. Allow the turkey to drain for a few minutes. (Safety tip: allow the oil to cool completely before storing or disposing.)
  12. Remove turkey from the rack and place on a serving platter. Allow to rest for 20 minutes before carving.
  13. NOTE: Use only oils with high smoke points, such as peanut, canola or safflower oil. To determine the correct amount of oil, place the turkey in the pot before adding seasoning and add water until turkey is covered. Take turkey out of the water before marking the oil level. Measure the amount of water and use a corresponding amount of oil. Dry the pot thoroughly of all water.

Recipe Source: Recipe by The National Turkey Federation as found on

Roast Turkey with Herbal Rub (click name to see original recipe on

Yield: 18

Ethnicity: American

Meal Type: Main Course, Entrée

Occasion: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter

Preparation Method: Roast

Product Type: Whole

1 13-Pound WHOLE TURKEY, fresh or thawed
1 Medium onion, quartered
1 lemon, quartered
1/4 Cup vegetable oil
1 Teaspoon dried thyme
1 Teaspoon dried tarragon
1 Tablespoon dried rosemary
1 Teaspoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  1. Remove giblets and neck from turkey and reserve for broth. Rinse turkey with cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Place onion and lemon quarters in neck and body cavities.
  2. In a small bowl, mix oil with herbs, salt and pepper. With your finger tips, gently loosen skin from the breast without pulling off the skin. Place 1 tablespoon of herb mixture under skin; replace skin. Rub cavities and outside of turkey with remaining herb mixture.
  3. Secure the neck skin to the back with skewers. Fold wings under back of turkey. Place legs in tucked position. May be prepared to this point, covered and refrigerated for several hours.
  4. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a large shallow (no more than 2-1/2 inches) deep roasting pan. Insert an oven-safe thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh, being careful it does not touch the bone.
  5. Cover bird with a loose tent of foil. Roast turkey in a preheated 325 degree F. oven for about 2-1/2 hours. Remove foil and baste bird with pan juices. Continue to roast for about another hour until meat thermometer registers 180 degrees F. in the thigh.
  6. Remove turkey from oven and allow to rest for 15-20 minutes before carving. Transfer to a large platter and serve with gravy. Note: Yields 18 servings at 6 ounces per portion.

Recipe Source: Recipe provided by Giant Food of Landover, MD as found on's the question. How are you cooking your Turkey? Are going healthy? or are you deep frying it and giving yourself a day to enjoy it?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Jump Around

It's been awhile, right? I can't remember when my last post was. NO, don't go looking it up! You'll just make both of us depressed! There is a good news/bad news kind of situation going on. The BAD news is that I've gained back.....probably....ten lbs. The GOOD news is that I've only gained back 10 lbs! Given that I've basically done NOTHING for the past 3 months or so, that's not bad at all.

Except I'm kinda tired. Working out really DOES give you energy. I thought that was a myth, you see, because it kind of sneaks up on you. I mean, everyone I know hates to work out. I don't care what they tell you, it is not fun. It ain't. I just ain't. But there is that huge rush after it's over. I'm not sure it's all endorphins either. I think part of it is just relief that the ish is over for the day! And.......probably some endorphins as well. We like science here. No science deniers.

But the long term energy boost sneaks up on you. You don't even realize you have more energy, you just.....have it. I miss that feeling.

I haven't given up ALL of my semi healthy habits, though. I still use my food scale. Not as often as I should, but often. I measure chips, ice cream, candy, you name it. I still don't buy snacks to have around the house. Check that, I don't buy many snacks.....and I stay away from the snacks that I can't turn down. I have chips here, but I have no problem saying no to chips. They aren't a huge temptation for me. Cookies, on the other hand, are a problem. Cupcakes? Forgetaboutit.

My two huge problems/stumbling blocks/clusterfucks.... have been Fast Food (aka, Satan) and not working out. (aka The Devil.) Of course, not counting calories is bad, but who wants to count calories when you KNOW the number is going to be crazy because you had Starbucks for breakfast and McDonalds for dinner? So, we're staring over again. Better food choices, yes, but I'm not silly enough to think I can go from fast food to zero in one day. But what I can do is jump around. So, in honor of my new commitment....

Thursday, November 4, 2010

20 lbs gone... who has my cupcake?

Calorie Counter

Ok, kidding about the cupcake. mostly.

Yep, its only taken what ... 6 months maybe? LOL It's the number that counts tho... I wish I could say I have learned a lot or reformed eating habits or... well any number of things. But alas, I really think it has been luck and that I manage to get to the gym usually at least twice a week and forget to eat on a regular basis. sigh.

So... I have to do better. The first step is dealing with the emotional eating, the stress eating, or I should say... lack there of. I get stressed, I don't eat. I get emotional I eat chocolate. Eating a chocolate bar once a day and that is it is not really a good plan. So.. I need to give a good read of Dara's post and find my way.

For now tho, I will take the 20 lbs and smile about it.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Emotional Eating

I don't think of my self as touchy feely, but I do want to stop and talk about how our emotions play into our diets and weight loss. For some of you this will not apply. Whoever you are, I'm really jealous so I wouldn't come within arms length of me and acknowledge that emotional eating isn't a problem for you. :D

If you follow me on Twitter, read my blog, or happen to know me personally then you know that 2010 has been a pretty stressful year. I have dealt with personal tragedy, financial challenges, and extra work stress all while trying to kick start this writing "hobby" of mine. Heh. The point of that list is that it has added a big huge steaming pile of stress to my life. I mean to the point that four months ago or so I was seeing a physical therapist for a knot in my back so bad I couldn't sleep and couldn't work. I was a train wreck, physically.

This is never good because these kinds of things always lead to me making bad eating choices. I love food. Food does not judge me. It does not criticize me. I am always enough for food. I am smart enough, pretty enough, and I am great company for food...even when I am not. Food makes no demands on me. It's just there. For a few moments while I am eating it I feel good....euphoric even. It's like a drug, and like that the high always ends. Leaving behind the same emotional wreckage that was there to begin with plus the new pile of guilt on top for having eaten the the two cupcakes or the bag of chips or whatever it was.

Let me tell you breaking up is hard to do.

I never understood girls who repeatedly went back to guys who just weren't good for them in some way. But I am starting to have an appreciation for being drawn to a behavior that isn't healthy even when you know it isn't. Breaking up with food is hard, mostly because as one person (and I can't remember for the life of me where I read it!) we don't get to make a clean break. We still have to have a relationship with food...just different. Come on, we've all tried the let's just be friends line, haven't we?

So, here I am grappling with the emotions connected to eating. I get stressed out and I want to eat. I get upset and I want to eat. It makes me feel good...if only for that moment. Until I don't. And then the cycle starts again and holy shit I weight in at 200 pounds.

It is a frustrating cycle to be caught in, especially when you know intellectually what the healthy choices are; but in the end the emotional eating seems to overrule your intelligent brain. Your hand reaches out and comes back clutching that item that you know you are going to regret later.

How do you break the cycle? I suppose if I had a really good answer for that I would be losing weight. I try to keep healthier options around me so that when the urge to eat strikes I am at least grabbing healthy food instead of junk food. I am trying to exercise more consistently and for longer. I did Billy Blanks for 43 minutes Tuesday morning and Monday was 23 minutes. Tomorrow is another 43 minute workout. I plan on integrating a Saturday workout into my weekend schedule since I tend to lax off, and I am putting down the beer. I mean it this time. I slipped and let beer back in the picture somewhere, and it just is no good for me.

So those are my small tweaks I am implementing for now to jump start things again, because honestly, I am not happy. I don't want to be this size anymore. The question is, will I actually do anything about it?

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