The History

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March 23, 2010 by ritadate

I am now officially a nutritionist. Through the years I have read so much about diets, exercise, food, health and anything possibly related to weight loss. After I begun writing about food studying nutrition seemed to be the next step to know about food more in-depth. Having read plenty of matter on what to eat and testing it out my practical knowledge was better than my book knowledge.

I have always had a weight problem and now it has spun out of control. In middle school and high school I was a chubby child who loved Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookies, fried chicken and spaghetti with meatballs. I dreamed of being one of Charlie’s Angels or Bionic Woman like all the girls in my class but it remained a far off dream. I did nothing to shed the extra weight. Later around 19 years of age I decided it was time to lose the puppy fat. This was the only thing holding me back from catching some of the good looking guys in college, I had the face; the body needed work.

I did lose weight and began to look good in some nice clothes. The shoulder padded tops of the eighties helped hide the last few pounds I had not lost all I should have but all in all I looked good.

After I got engaged I decided I wanted to look especially good in the wedding photos that were to last a lifetime. I worked at it, working out at the university gym and staying away from fatty foods. I lost weight and looked my best for the big day.

That was 19 years and 19 kilos ago. A lot has happened since now and then. I was a happy 60 kilos five years ago when I moved back to India after a 2 year period in Boston. I have put on 2 kilos a year and it seems to be going only upwards.

I am 43 and it has always been difficult to lose the pounds but now it seems impossible. Over the past 3 years I have experienced difficult menstrual cycles where I am in pain, am cranky and ravenously hungry for more than a week of the month, month after month. If I lose a kilo for the month it comes back in that week. I am also tired and do not feel like moving. I never needed motivation for exercise but now I do. There are weeks when I do not feel like moving. I never had any problems with my period before; in fact and its presence was hardly felt.

I used to see older women who used to walk on the ground for exercise and wonder how they got such big hips and that their walking will never make them lose those huge hips. I saw them day after day never getting any smaller. Now that I was nearly their age I knew that their energy levels were down and they were now walking instead of running.

Yikes, now I was one of those women. Middle aged with a large stomach that kept walking.

I was determined not to end up like them. Two months ago I joined a gym and took a trainer there. Building muscle mass was the key to weight loss and I had not done this all these years, at least not regularly. Spending all that money would make me go. I also have a driver to take me there so no excuses. I have been quite regular and am getting good workouts. The other days of the week I go to Deccan Gymkhana and am supposed to be under my “Couch to 5K” program. This is not going to well. Many times I just walk for half hour before it is time to go to morning coffee with the gang. I have sacrificed this on my gym days so I do not feel bad going.

Now for the past 6 weeks I have been following this regime. The diet however has seen no change and neither has the weight. Is there a correlation?

Yes, no matter how much I sweat it out, unless I change my eating habits I will not lose weight. I have to control my hunger, eat less and eat less fattening foods.

First let me tell you what changes I have already made.
1. No sugar in my coffee(I am still working on the tea)
2. Very little food at the morning coffee and I do not eat the coconut chutney.
3. Rarely eat out. Once a week at most.

My weakness is sweets, my hunger and my control once I begin eating. If I do not begin eating then I am okay but the problem arises when it is time to stop.

The other day to I needed to send a photo of myself to a publication along with my work. The photos my daughter took of me were shocking. I had really become large. All that work at the gym had done nothing.

I was bingeing at home. Sometimes I ate a whole pack of chikki, a tray of til burfis, or peanut butter sandwiches. It had to stop if I wanted to lose any weight. I had tried no sweets, no sugar, no dinner but after a day I was back to square one. The bingeing would begin again.

I had lost 9 kilos when I stayed with my mother for 2 years. But the situation was different. I was caring for a sick child and my parents took care of everything else in the house. I had no cooking, cleaning or other household chores to manage. I used to have a lassi for dinner and nothing else, exercise rigorously and regularly over a period of one and half years and the weight came off steadily and slowly. It was not easy but I did it. At 60 kilos I came back to India and here I am 5 years and 9 kilos later.

I wish this story had a happy ending but there is no ending as yet. I just have to try each day to eat less. That is the key. 1800 calories is hardly any food. A bowl of rice and dal has about 300 calories and you need at least 2 to get full. This along with some vegetables and curds and the meal will be 700 plus calories. Tea and coffee are 80 each. One piece of chikki and the battle is lost.

But I am determined to do it. I have even posted a photo taken yesterday March 18, 2010 as a before photo. My goal is to lose 2 kilos by May 15th.

My plan is the following:
1. Eat more eggs. Have eggs instead of peanut butter. Cut peanut butter and peanut chutney out completely in fact. Microwaved eggs are low in fat and fill you up.
2. No sweets period. I will keep raisins if I need something sweet. No cookies, cake or peanut ladoos.
3. Drink green tea. This does help but I have been too lazy to make it and frankly I do really like the taste. But now I will drink it!
4. Exercise. Get back to the “Couch to 5k” program.
5. Move through the day. Writing is sedentary. Movement through the day is necessary. I really don’t want to fire the maid so I better start moving every hour by doing surya namaskars. Keep the yoga mat out and ready by the desk.
6. Move in the evening. Shut down the computer and go for a walk. I hate getting out in the evenings but will do this at least 3-4 time a week.
7. Eat a light dinner.

I will begin from now. I will update you once a week. In the meanwhile I will give you some excellent weight loss advice. Giving advice is always easier than following it… Time for my surya namaskars. Wish me luck.

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