Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A Cheesy Testimonial

I agreed to write a testimonial about the progress I have made with my weight loss and life change.  Here it is. . .after a little glimpse of Golden Gardens.

I have been chubby since puberty.  The women in my family are large breasted and very short.  I have lost and gained weight, tried different fad diets, exercise programs and have watched my mom battle her weight my whole life.  I saw my grandmother die from complications due to obesity.

I moved to Seattle two years ago.  It was a big life change for me and I ate and drank my way through the stress.  This coping mechanism caused me to be heavier than I've ever been.  I left the comfort of home and tried to find it elsewhere.  I guess I never realized just how much I depended on food for comfort.

The thing with me is that I have a pretty good sense of self.  I have always liked myself, and my weight doesn't determine my self worth.  I didn't even realize how heavy I had become until I saw a picture of myself last May and I looked uncomfortable in my own skin.  I also realized that I was feeling like crap more and more often.  I had trouble fitting into my clothes.  It became apparent to me that my self image didn't match the pictures I saw.  It was an eye opener that I needed to make a change.  I loved myself enough to take the steps I need to care for my body and become healthier.

I was aware of how much I weighed without ever getting on a scale but it took me months to mentally prepare to take on this lifestyle change.  I had to wait until I was ready to insure that I would succeed.  I have a very strong will and once I put my mind to do something, I do it.  There is a lot of preparation involved with committing to a goal like this.  I told all my friends and family what I planned to do.  I journaled about it.  I prayed about it.  I enlisted the help of a professional.  Who better to ask how to deal with this than a nutritionist?

I did have one last junk food week before I began.  I ate whatever the heck I wanted because I knew my life was about to change.  I began meeting in May with Green Lake Nutrition to begin the metabolic reset and it wasn't until the end of July that I actually began the process.  I have lost 37 pounds so far and I've gone from a size 16 to a size 12 since then.  I've lost inches off my waist, bust and thighs.  I've still got further to go, but I am excited about the progress I have made so far.

One of the items I am permitted to eat on the metabolic reset shopping list is cheese.  I figured I could tackle this lifestyle change because my biggest comfort food ever is allowed.  As long as I had my cheese, I could do this.  The thing is that I wasn't feeling as good as I thought I should considering the overload of veggies I had introduced into my life.  I knew something else had to change.  I discussed this with Grace, my metabolic reset "coach" and she suggested that I drop the cheese.  Not just cut back on the cheese, eliminate it completely.  I may have a dairy sensitivity she told me. . .and to my absolute horror I forced myself give up cheese.  To fully commit to feeling better I had to sacrifice cheese.

Giving up cheese is honestly one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.  It pissed me off and made me bitter.  I almost gave up on the plan because I didn't want to give up my favorite food.  While my body was going through cheese withdraw I just became more and more angry.  How unfair!!!  This is a comfort food that I ate every single day!    I pouted, cursed, and literally bawled my eyes out.  Grace talked me though some tough days.  Once I finally let go, guess what??  I lost five pounds in one week and the inflammation in my belly area dissipated.  I also felt like a thick fog lifted from my head.  Since I gave up dairy, I feel sooooooo much better!  Even THAT pissed me off.  But what can I say, the cheese is the culprit.

I would never have dreamed that I had a sensitivity to dairy products and that it was directly related to to my weight struggles.  Perhaps I was in denial, I can't say that I ever felt awesome after eating an ice cream cone.  It really sucks.  I am not happy about it.  It is true however and now that I know eating dairy causes me to feel horrible, it is much easier to avoid it.  It may not even be ALL dairy products but we haven't gotten that far yet.  I want to get to a comfortable weight for myself before I begin trying different kinds of cheese.  Maybe it is just cow's milk.  In the meantime I eat Daiya when I absolutely need to have the cheese craving fulfilled.

I know that cleansing my body of processed foods allows me to really be in tune with how foods affect my body.  I can pinpoint exactly what is making me feel a certain way because I am eating so clean right now.  I have more sensitivities than I was ever aware of and it is helping me to make better choices.  Gluten is another challenge.  Who wants to give up cheese AND bread?  UGH!  I am getting a clear explanation of why I have been struggling with my weight for so long.  It is all starting to make sense.   Through this metabolic reset process my relationship with food is evolving.  I am more conscious of what I put into my mouth and I realize that I am not punishing myself by choosing to eat veggies instead of pizza.  I am showing myself love and kindness when I make better food choices.  If you give your body the nutrition it craves, it functions the way it should.  Awareness of food sensitivities has given me an unexpected and welcomed sense of freedom!

No comments: