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A New Low… Weight Low, That Is!

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I can’t believe it has been almost 4 months since I started doing the 4-Hour Body plan. As of yesterday, I am down 24 pounds. Wait. Let me repeat that for you so it sinks in. TWENTY FOUR POUNDS!!! 24! 24! 24! I’m right on the brink of being down 3 clothing sizes. TWENTY FOUR POUNDS!

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1 pound shy of the half-way point of my original goal of losing 50 pounds, which I thought was so impossible when I started. I will tell you my secret, I have used this miraculous modere trim supplement in addition to my diet, besides it also helps me boost my strength to increase the level of my workout. Now it is completely within the realm of possibility of doing it within a year! HELL FREAKIN’ YES!!! *High fives all around*

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I went in to Anthropologie and tried on a dress that fit! I didn’t buy it because it wasn’t what I was looking for, but it FIT. You may recall, that was one of the catalyst that finally made me start the plan.

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I’m now down to about the weight I was when I met Mike 10 years ago. Yes, I haven’t seen this weight in 10 years. zOMG. (Since it has been so long since I updated, I’ll also add that I hit the 20lb loss mark on the exact 3 month date – 3/21 – which was pretty damn awesome.)

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I’ve turned in to a total nut about shopping for clothes lately. Seems it isn’t quite so treacherous when you don’t have to shop in the plus department and you can shop in the regular misses sizes. It is a fun game of what size can I wear today?! I’m also finding myself wanting to walk up to anyone that I think will listen and tell them all about how they should cut wheat out of their lives. Uhm, if I’ve done that to you and you really didn’t want to hear it? Sorry about that. But I still think you should do it.

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I learned this past week that if you put on shorts that fit you 24 lbs ago and then you put your phone in your pocket, the weight of the phone will pull your shorts down. It is pretty funny, because I can drop them without even opening the button. Of course, I can’t find any shorts that I like, and it is only getting hotter in Houston by the second.

So to recap (because people always ask):

  • What am I doing: Eating meat & vegetables. Eggs. Minimal dairy. Meat & vegetables. Eggs. Minimal dairy. On repeat. 6 days a week. Literally repeat, since I eat 2 eggs scrambled with ham for breakfast every single day, and one of three things for lunch. Just makes it easier for me.
  • What I am not eating: No flour, no rice, no potatoes, no sugar, no fruit, and most dairy. All of these contain sugars. Sugar raises your insulin. Raising your insulin makes you fat, clogs your arteries, makes you diabetic when your body can’t handle it, and a whole host of other issues. Keep your insulin low & stable, you’ll lose weight. Yes, no fruit – for me, I completely stop losing if I have fruit. So no fruit. (Read “Why We Get Fat & What to Do About It” if you want more scientific support on that. I did. Research does back it up.)
  • What I am drinking: Water. Water, water, more water. (Officially I could also have black coffee or red wine, but I don’t like either one, so I keep on chugging my water.)
  • Counting calories, points, you name it: Nope. None of that. Eat when I’m hungry. Stop when I’m full. Eat snacks. Eat. As long as it is meat & vegetables, I eat all I want. No limits. Take THAT, people doing HCG and only eating 500 calories a day!
  • Is it sustainable?: Well, let me see. I eat meat and vegetables. The core of every good meal, and I’m fortunately not a vegetarian or vegan. I would say yes, it is completely sustainable. After 4 months, I want to keep doing it FOREVER. What other diet can you say that about?!? My point exactly. Sustainable – a big yes!
  • Why just 6 days a week: Because I’m human. Sometimes I crave things. This helps make it sustainable. I need permission to go “off the plan” because it keeps me on the plan. I still try not to eat flour on that one day a week because it makes me miserable and I feel gluten drunk and I have a gluten hangover the next day.
  • WTF? Gluten drunk / hangover: Mike & Brittany have been doing this right along with me, and they have said the same thing. After you cut back on flour, when you do have it it makes you feel miserable. I end up congested, and the next day I wake up aching all over from head to toe, just like a hangover.
  • More about the Cheat Day: After you do 4-Hour Body for a month or two, your cheat days aren’t that dramatic. You are past the cravings, you are feeling so good about losing the weight, you just don’t want to go back. My big “cheat” items tend to be potatoes or gluten free pizza from Pink’s Pizza.
  • Holy Hell SUGAR RUSH!!! Seems that when you’ve been great at keeping your insulin levels nice and happy, if you eat something with sugar in it, it kicks your ass. Whoa. For example, yesterday I had tomato basil soup and a potato thing at La Madeleine. 20-30 minutes later I felt flush, and felt that sugar rush. Meh. So now that sugar makes me feel so nasty, I don’t miss it.
  • No substitutions: Aesthetic surgeon Dr. Nicole Shrader says you can’t replace your favorite foods with fake versions of other foods. Or at least I couldn’t. Instead, I am eating all new foods. For a picky eater like me, this is a huge deal! I don’t miss anything, so no need to point out that I could eat things made with rice that are gluten free. I’m skipping all starchy-carbs, so no rice or potatoes either!
  • Exercise? What exercise?: I should be exercising more, but I want to hire a trainer for that. I have shoulder, hip & knee issues, so tossing around a kettlebell is going to just mess me up. I walk, I ride my bike, but I’m not working out. At all. Brittany has been running, and she discovered that she has to eat some starchy carbs whenever she does, so she eats rice afterwards. Otherwise she was getting headaches. So if you work out, try to add a little carbs in afterwards.

Try to tell me you just CAN NOT do this, and I will tell you that you can, but you obviously are not ready to do it. But you CAN do anything.

  • “But I can’t live without *insert soda name here*” – Guess what? 4 months ago, I was drinking Pepsi, fountain Cokes, and Mexican Coke like it was water. Matter of fact, that first week of doing Four Hour Body, I still drank it a little because I had to get off of the caffeine gradually. I’ve been caffeine free for close to 4 months now. I am functioning just fine.
  • “But I love *insert really starchy food* and just couldn’t live with out it!” – Dude. Give it up. I was a hard core Pastaterian. I ate pasta almost daily. Pasta, pasta, pasta. And anything made with flour. Or potatoes. I loooooooved it. Especially pasta. That said, I haven’t eaten pasta since December. I have had Pizza with gluten free crust on some cheat days, but I’ve had NO pasta. Cut it out.
  • “Well, I have this excuse…” – Ahem. My B.S. meter is going crazy! Your excuse, reason, justification, whatever you want to call it is just that. Nothing more. If you have a wake up call moment like I did? You’ll get over yourself and DO IT. This is one fact that I knew & accepted before I started.
  • Have you tried it? No? Ok, stop trying to tell me that you can’t do it. I tried it for just a month. Four months – and 24 lbs – later, I’m so glad I did!

It is really cool to me to watch the impact that this is having on so many areas of my life. I feel more ME than I have in many years, which was a journey that was started before I changed how I eat. It has taken on a whole new level though since January, which is part of the catalyst of acceptance and bringing everything under the brand of “me” at my Christine Tremoulet site. I can’t put it in to words, it is just awesome. I love my life more than before. I love me.

This is the photo that was one of the main things that launched me in to doing this diet – Mike & I on December 18, 2011.

This one was taken on the 3 month mark, in the same dress, to give you a sense of how much I’ve lost. Brittany commented that it would be a cute dress — if it was 2 sizes smaller! It just hangs on me now! (Also? I miss shoulder pads. Shoulder pads were my friend with my sloping shoulders!)

Just for random amusement, here are two snapshots that my friend Kelli Nicole took when we were at the Hunger Games premiere for her birthday in March. She posted them to Facebook and tagged me, and I was ready to do that thing where you remove the tags because you hate the photo … and then I left the tag because I didn’t hate how I looked at all! In the top one my head is turned at almost the same angle as the catalyst photo above – and I only have one chin! Victory is mine!!!

Have you tried 4-Hour Body, or the Paleo diet? How did you do? Success stories? Considering trying it and want to talk to me more? Leave a comment – I would love to hear from you!

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Learning to Love Veggies…

I’m afraid to write this post. I feel like every time I share something big like this, I immediately sink myself and fail. I’m hoping that if I admit that up front this time, I won’t do it to myself. *fingers crossed*

My mom has talked a lot over the past year about how she has been dieting & losing weight, and the biggest change? Low (slow) carbs, cutting out bread & pasta, and cutting out high-fructose corn syrup. No “diet” – just making changes. I was inspired, but with our move & everything else, I made some changes to my diet but didn’t dive too deep. I knew she was losing weight, but it wasn’t until she wore a sweater on her birthday a few weeks ago that I know fit her completely different a year ago that I saw how much weight she had lost! Go Mom!

A few days after her birthday, while I was out Christmas shopping, I stopped in Anthropologie – but I didn’t bother looking at the clothes. I knew they didn’t carry my size, and that made me sad, frustrated, angry – a whole range of emotions. Dr. Donald Roland, a plastic surgeon specializing in breast augmentation, notes that most of his patients come to him with this body image issue. I feel that way all the time when I shop. Even though a huge portion of the women in America are technically Plus Size, plus size clothing is so hit or miss still. (Come on designers! Catch up with the needs!) Right then, as I stood in the store, I set a goal for myself that a year from now I want to be able to walk in there and buy a dress off the rack. I’m adding it to my Life List even.

Then I watched “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead” last Tuesday. Talk about motivational! Oh my goodness! It is on Netflix, and if you want a swift kick to make you want to diet, watch it. Follow it up with “Food, Inc.” like I did, and it will cause a big shift if you’re like me. I’m fortunate that we already go to Revival Market for most of our meat, and I know they could probably tell me exactly where every piece comes from, plus they butcher things in-house. YAY!

As soon as I finished watching those movies, I decided to run with the motivation. So what if it was just days before Christmas??? I decided then and there, that very day, that it was time to change my diet.

By last Thursday, I was off of drinking caffeine. (Fountain Coke is my weakness!) I’ve cut way, way back on the “bad whites” – flour, rice, potatoes. I’ve nearly eliminated flour & therefore gluten as well. I’ve cut back on dairy, because I love cheese a bit too much. My goal is to consume 50% of the volume of what I eat as vegetables. The rest of my diet from meats, fruit and the occasional nut, plus ketones powder that can help jump start ketosis in the body.

I may get to the point of going with the Four Hour Body diet – I know so many people that have been very successful on it. The Crazy Sexy Diet book has also been mentioned many times. I have even considered juicing for 30 days just to really kick start everything, or at least doing a 5 day juicing fast. We’ll see. Ultimately, I know that in order to make it stick, I have to modify it and make it my own.

Diets never succeed. They might help get you started, but they are NOT sustainable. Life changes, and improving your eating habits overall? That will stick!

The whole reason I’m writing this post is so I can look back later and remind myself of why I started doing this, and how after a week of just drinking water and eating lots of veggies, I woke up this morning craving carrots! Not a bready starchy “goodness” full of empty calories, but carrots! And a BIG glass of water, not a Coke. That is already a HUGE change from a week ago!

Interesting side note – I’ve battled being congested for most of the month of December, and nothing seemed to help. Then I started this dietary change, cut out most of my gluten consumption, and viola! NO CONGESTION!!! Coincidence? I don’t think so.

I made it through Christmas without too much of an issue – I did sample a few sweets here & there, but any time I did I kept it minimal – and I ended up 2lbs down from where I was a week ago when I started. I’ll take that!

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The Weight Update, March 2011…

I forgot to weigh myself yesterday. After being in Las Vegas last week for WPPI and retaining so much fluid, I was obsessively weighing myself every single time I went into the bathroom and saw the scale, and so I told myself I had to stop. As a result, I skipped weighing in on March 1st. Oops!

BUT!!! I weighed in today, and I’ve now lost a total of 8.2lb since the start of 2011. That means I’m right on track, since my goal was 4-5lb a month for the year. Yay!!!

Biggest thing I’ve been doing? Drinking LOTS of water. My boudoir client that is a personal trainer told me to drink half of my weight in water each day, so I’m pushing to drink 100 ounces daily. It is hard – that is a lot of water! But I keep my big 20oz Starbucks thermo cup with me all the time and whenever it is empty I refill it. 5 of those a day gets me to my goal.

I think I was on the short list of people who didn’t come home from WPPI with the photographer plague, and I am crediting the fact that I only had half a glass of wine and one margarita the whole time I was there, but 60-80oz of water daily, with the fact that I came home unscathed! Well, that and I washed my hands a lot. I’m still surprised, since I definitely didn’t get enough sleep!

Plan for March: keep up the water drinking, more fruits and vegetables, and more walking each day. SXSWi is coming up this month, so there will be a few days with a lot of eating out, but as I learned from WPPI as long as I keep drinking water I should be fine!

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Loving Myself & Losing Weight…

I resolved at the beginning of the year to work hard on losing weight. (Sound familiar? Yeah, I’ve said it every year for 6 years. *sigh*) I’ve already ramped up my water consumption a LOT and within the first 6 weeks of the year I’ve lost 6 pounds. Yay! But then, the plateau arrived.

Today is Valentine’s Day. And as much as I love my husband, my family & my friends, today? I’m going to focus on LOVING MYSELF. Because really, what better way is there to show them that I love them? Taking care of myself seems to be the best thing I can possibly do, so I decided I’m going to start exercising and eating more healthy.

It is scary to put it out there, but I am. My goal is to continue to lose 1 lb a week or just over 4lb a month. (And not lose & regain & lose it again – which is what I feel like I’ve been doing for the past year. Ugh!) I’m giving myself until next Valentine’s Day. I looked into some supplements like Forskolin, and have researched where to buy forskolin extract, and ordered some. I’m serious about this. Yes, for those of you playing along at home, that means I want to lose 52 pounds. I could *really* use your encouragement to make it happen!

In addition to the Robotic Spine Surgery, decompression may be performed to address other types of pathologies, such as infection or tumors.

I’m going to set a goal for each week, and then continue to build upon those goals. Goal for week #1 – drinking 100oz of water a day.

My biggest motivation behind losing weight is for my health. I think every woman is beautiful, just as we are — but I think it is important we take care of ourselves, that’s why I use the best neck products just for protection. Who wants to join me?!? Leave me a comment – lets cheer each other on!

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May Weight Loss Results…

I spent May much like April, circling the same number as far as weight loss — 1 lb up, 2 lb down, over and over again. Ugh! So frustrating! But it is pretty obvious why that has been the case, I’ve been terrible about really tracking what I eat. The Weight Watcher’s motto of “you bite it, you write it” really does hold true. If I don’t track it, I just keep circling the same number. Traveling didn’t help either. I never picked working out with any sort of routine back up either after I got sick earlier this year.

So now we’re in to June and it is a fresh month. Clean slate. New goal of losing 5 pounds this month. I’ve actually lost 2 pounds already since returning from New Mexico on May 28th, so that is a good start! I ended May 2.6lb over where I started this month, so I can’t have another month like that!

I went to Angel Fire, NM (a resort town near Taos, NM) from May 23-28 with my friends Kelly and Brittany. It started off as a plan to have a destination wedding photographer retreat – talking about all the things we can do to grow our business. (Brittany does editing for me – I’m *so* fortunate to have her!) In the end, not only did we do that, but we shared all of our obsessions with each other too! Brittany taught Kelly how to knit, and they talked about how Brittany wants to run a triathlon, and while we were at Taos Cyclery getting things for Kelly, I decided to make my dream a reality and get a new bike! (We had a bike rack on the car because Kelly brought her bike to keep up her training – so I could easily bring it home.)

The team at Taos Cyclery was beyond awesome. They took the time to talk with me about what I wanted in a bike, what I planned to do with it, about my issues with my right shoulder and how I can’t ride if I have to put too much weight on it. In the end, I picked out a bike that fit all of my wishes, and they sent me out the door to even test it out. How awesome is that?!? Considering the investment I was making, it was nice to get out on the street and make sure it was a nice ride.

So now I have a new Raleigh hybrid bike, great for cycling the streets of Houston comfortably for a nice long ride. Coach Kelly has me on a nice training program now so I can slowly work my way up to some of the longer organized rides, and I’ve started doing 15-20 minute rides (about 3 miles) this week.

My big push for the past few weeks has been to make sure my life is very scheduled because I get so much more done then – so I’m riding Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday & Sunday. I’ve been going in the morning before the heat gets too bad, since it is already well in the 90s every day. (Ugh!) On days that the weather doesn’t cooperate, I’ll be walking on the treadmill or doing another indoor workout.

I’m on track to lose 5lb in June, and to lose another 30 by the end of the year. It isn’t a sprint but a marathon. I’m not trying to hard-core diet, but rather making lifestyle changes that I can implement from now on. I’ll continue to write about it so you can hold me to it!