I’m completely overwhelmed. I’m so “Over-It” Totally and completely, exhausted at the insurmountable task of healing my body and I’ll never find what works for me..Why Bother? I just want to give up! I want to quit trying , nothing works anyway!
Do you ever feel this way?? Do you ever feel like no matter what you do, eat or change.. it’s not good enough, it’s still not the answer??
That’s where I am right now.
I’ve been on this journey for all of my adult life, a journey to health. So, right now 15 years into my initial pondering – WTF? What’s going on with my body? I’m still unsure that I’m any closer to the answers I am seeking…
I was a average-thin child and teen… Mom packed my lunch, made real food meals and we enjoyed dinner together as a family at the kitchen table. I wasn’t an athlete, wasn’t more active than required. No health issues, no abnormal complaints…. Until College.
Within my first semester of college I had gained 30 pounds. It was immediate and drastic on my (5′ 4″) 117 pound at high school graduation body. I was eating too much junk, drinking too many beers and not getting nearly enough activity… I continued the same lifestyle pattern thoughout college and my weight kept climbing higher and higher… Beginning my senior year of college I had enough, finally deciding to stop the insanity and loose some weight, in May of 1999 I stepped on the scale at 199, gaining 80+ pounds in just 36 months at college.
I learned about the Atkin’s Diet in a magazine and immediately started… and quit drinking completely. The weight fell off. Then I got a puppy and started walking him 2x a day, the weight continued to come off… by the time I graduated I was down to 150s in just 5 months.
Graduation time came and I (and puppy) moved home, got my first job and joined a gym…. my mom was supportive and I continued to eat low carb…. I maintained my weight loss and met my hubby a few months later…
And then it happened, FUN. Falling in love took a toll on my body, we were eating out, drinking beer, and I was cheating way to often.. the weight started to creep back on. We bought a house and literally all hell broke loose.. we both were gaining weight while enjoying our new life together..
When we got engaged in January of 2002 and I was back over 190… When we got our engagement photos back I was devistated at my appearance and vowed there and there to loose weight before our wedding. Back to strict low carb I went.
February 14, 2003 we got married, I vividly remember weighing myself that morning at 144 pounds – my goal was 145. I did it, I was so happy!!! I celebrated with indulging in any wedding food or drink my heart desired. The next day I think I ate 10 pieces of our leftover wedding cake and I don’t even really like cake.
Over the past 10 years I’ve been trying to figure out WTF. Why is my body so different. I’ve always been a REAL FOOD eater. I ate lots of veggies and healthy fats… never ate a bunch of junk food or sweets (except for my wedding cake!) Ate at home much more than we ate out. All along avoiding starchy carbs and processed foods.
I pin-balled back & forth between 160s and 190s for the past 10 years… typically being able to FORCE my body to loose weight when I was determined. And like wise I’m positive if I did (another) juice fast or 40 day round of HCG, I could get some weight off my body.. but know I know that quick result isn’t solving my problem.
Last winter I completed 2 Juice-only fasts (26 and 45 days) … in an effort to help my body get time to detoxify, heal and repair. I lost some weight and felt great! Weighed around 160 when we went on vacation in March – I was pleased…. Just before my juice fasting, I found out I had hashimoto’s thyroid and celiacs, also dairy and egg intolerant (see my enterolab test results) I gained a few pounds on vacay but maintained in the 160s for several months after vacation, being gluten, egg & dairy free.. practicing some intermittent fasting and juicing – always eating Real Food, healthy fats, fermented foods, no processed garbage, etc.
Occasionally I’ve had some unintentional gluten. And I’ve INTENTIONALLY had dairy and eggs. Slowly since the end of May, unexplainably my weight JUMPED. Like literally. The funny thing is, my weight started climbing right as I started working out consistently. Nothing insane, just weight training and lots of walking/hiking cardio. NO I haven’t gained 30 pounds of muscle. I’d know the difference. My workouts are basically pointless, muscle isn’t building, endurance isn’t building. All for nothing.
Then I noticed something strange – these white patches under my arm… based on my diagnosis it’s vitilgo. That makes 3 autoimmune conditions I have, Ugh. I’m obviously doing something wrong….. I’m otherwise healthy & active.
So today, in the present… Right now I’m an emotional wreck. I’m gluten free, grain free, legume free, egg free, dairy free (all of which I whole-heartedly believe are a healthy diet for me regardless) Egg Free Paleo is the easiest description or Auto Immune Paleo…. But as I’ve transitioned away from grains, legumes, my stalled weight loss attempts have back fired and now I’m struggling to just to maintain my weight.
Putting it in to a nutshell, I eat very very healthy and am active daily + workout 3x a week with weights. Yet struggle to maintain my weight. Calories, Fat, Carbs, Protein, I’ve played with all the ratios, no explanation. I’m proof Calories in Vs Calories out does not work, period. I was eating 1,800 +/- calories a day and burning 3,000 calories a day on average, yet GAINED weight. I sat on the couch and ate 1,800+/- calories a day and GAINED weight.
Am I closer to my answer? Confidently, YES. Amongst all the pain I’m going though with my “failure” at weight loss, I’ve accomplished so much in other areas of my health…
- Clear, Acne Free skin. Seriously, best skin of my life. And I don’t use ANY special cleansers (just castile soap I wash my hair & body with and coconut oil to moisturize)
- My previously thinning hair is no longer falling out, it’s returned to normal
- I’ve healed my seasonal & pet allergies
- My monthly cycle is 2-3 days, no mood swings, no cramps, nothing to complain about. Nothing more than an inconvenience.
- Haven’t had a migraine headache in YEARS, infact the only time I’ve gotten a headache is after too many cocktails!
- Painful Plantar fasciitis is gone
- Optimal Vitamin D Levels
- Outstanding Cholesterol Ratios & particle size
So, Where do I go from here??
I’m tracking all of my food right now, not for calories/fat/carb/protein/etc but for what happens when I eat ________. I took out nightshades (tomatoes/peppers) and FODMAPs (avocado/apple/onion) – they can cause issues for people with AutoImmune Conditions in addition to eggs/gluten/grains/diary) and I’ve lost weight …. Then the next day ate tomato/pepper/onion/apple and gained weight – where my basic daily food was the same ratios. Today I’m eating “safe” foods + 1/2 an avocado… can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow. I’m going to continue to develop a strategy of eating that works for my body and health…. slow and steady
It’s complicated. And honestly I’m kinda embarrassed of everything and yet grateful at the same time. My body is telling me that there’s still more healing to be done, still more I need to do. If I was at a healthy weight, I may not have gone this deep into the rabbit hole to learn so much about foods & health… In fact, I may not found the passion to become a healthy-food blogger!!
There’s something more. There’s something else to my personal equation. And you’d be shocked that now after just sharing my story with you how much better I feel. Like a burden has been lifted off my shoulders. I’m free to move on.
Now, that I’ve let you in on my very personal struggle – I want to remind you of something… 99% of you will have an easier journey than I’m having. Seriously. So when you think it’s TOO HARD, or you don’t have the strength.. remember those of us who have more difficult healing to do, where our answers don’t come easy.
When I’m having an especially difficult day (like today for example) What keeps me motivated is TIME. Right now, regardless of the external manifestation of my weight, I’m one of the healthiest people I know. And getting healthier by the minute by filling my body with healthy, nutrient dense foods.. Where as if I QUIT.. I’m destined to a fate of misery and disease. When disease occurs you no longer have TIME. If you get cancer and need to heal your body, your TIME is limited… the pressure is on. You’re at the mercy of what you can do in that limited time to determine wether or not you survive… I’m not fighting for SURVIVAL directly, but indirectly I’m keeping disease away every day, with every bite of food, every drink… that ultimately motivates me.
We don’t have children to watch grow up, get married and start their own family, like many of you do to motivate your health & survival. However, my hubby and I, want meet old age with vigor and energy. We want to live a long, active life…. I look forward to success in my journey and love being here to help those of you who need it. The most rewarding, motivation comes to me from a good friend who’s been in a similar weight loss journey for as long as I’ve known him, after introducing him to Juicing and a Paleo lifestyle, many of his questions have been answered!!! Seeing his continued success is what motivates me to share with all of you everyday.
We are all here to support one another, helping us each strive for a healthier tomorrow.
In case you didn’t know, I need you. I appreciate and value your support. Many of you I’ve come to know personally through Facebook or Instagram, but for those of you who are just passively reading this.. you are all so important to me.PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. However, I only recommend products or services I have personally used myself and trust.