Saturday, January 4, 2014

23 months of Weight Maintenance - check in and dealing with a gain

23 months of Weight Maintenance - my check in this month

Highest weight: 187.4
Current weight: 117.0
Goal weight range: 113-118
Age: 47
Height 5’1”
Post- Menopause: Yes, since July 2013

What is working this month?

1.     Getting treated for an ear infection- see it on the second graph (below) from 12/4 to about 12/18 or so?  I could feel inflammation, but I didn’t feel ear pain until 12/17/13. Looking back on the weight graph, I could see it. 
2.     Dropping back down into a lower carb range 40-50 grams / day to reverse the gain trend.
3.     Getting back to 2X weekly strength training the last week of Dec 2013.
4.     Staying on my food template, as usual.
5.     Simplifying Christmas and the decorating and food craziness. I spent much more time beach walking and photography than ever. My new Christmas tradition.

The great news is that although the scale is up, I do have a 2-5% less body fat. I can tell my abdominal fat in my belly has decreased. This is great health wise, in my opinion. Supposedly the belly fat around the organs is related to metabolic disease. This hit home in the Refuse to Regain book (those MRI photos of visceral fat page 27 impacted me!!)

The so-so news is that I have more loose skin on my upper hips, on the sides. It’s either loose skin or a little bit of sub-cutaneous fat for the “winter” colder sleeping conditions.

I’m over it.  My body continues to change even 2 years from my weight maintenance date of Feb 3, 2012.  That’s okay. My health, sleep, emotional eating (in remission), and menopause symptoms are all in check. I feel most AWESOME!  Those are the main goals.

I wasn’t exactly thrilled to see my upper weight limit or my “scream weight”, but I did take swift action in getting back to a lower carb range.  This is why I chose my mid-BMI range for maintenance. Previous attempts at long-term maintenance were at 131, and I could not hold onto that for long. For a small boned, short person, it was too, high.

 I know our blogger friend; Vickie recommends 5 pounds lower than what you are aiming for maintenance range. My example is a good example of reversing within the 5-pound limit and still having good health, like lower abdominal fat. Let alone clothes that still fit. 

 I'd say my January Jeans 2014 challenge was a success, even though I did gain weight, I did not eat off the rails and my clothes still fit!

What did not work in the past:
1.     Waiting to go and get treated for bacterial infections, until the pain was so bad I could not sleep. I could not wish away the infection.
2.     Not weighing in and not catching weight gain trends early or fast enough until 10, 20, 30+ pounds were back on.
3.     Not strength training at all.
4.     Eating whatever the heck I wanted during Oct-Dec, hiding in huge sweaters and getting back to cutting calories in Jan-March, before the sweaters had to come off- (didn’t’ work!!!)
5.     Decorating, cookie baking, cookie eating, spending huge amounts of time doing Christmas cards and things other people wanted me to do or that I had learned was a “tradition”. Being on auto-pilot
Looser shirt side view

Different side view last week. Trying to get XS blouses..

1 month

2 months   

3 months

Moonlight Beach, Dec 2013


  1. Sorry you are up a bit, but you are still a very tiny little thing and look great! I have no doubt you'll be back down extremely soon. continue to enjoy the sunshine while we have it! :)

    1. Thanks Gwen. I've never gone a whole winter being fat adapted, so I'm keeping an open mind on what that brings to the scale. I know why the Paleo/Primal crowd does NOT focus on the scale. I also KNOW that I could slip into emotional eating pretty quick so I balance the two.
      Loving the good weather and taking long walks on the beach every day. Vitamin D is good!

  2. You look great!! And I agree with your "what didn't work" section- sometimes I gain, but catching it at a pound or two works SOOO much better than being "surprised" by a 10 or 20 pound gain, hahaha. Also- strength training is a MUST for me. I feel and look so much better when I'm regularly strength training.

    1. Jeannette, you are so right... It's better for me to figure out things at a lower weight gain. Looking forward to solidly sticking to my strength goals this year so I'm on autopilot. When my Dad died in June 2013- my food and walking were good life habits that I did on autopilot. 2014 will be the year I sneak off to the gym twice a week... no matter what..... :)

  3. Look on line for exercises that hit your excess skin areas. Pilates type moves.

    That probably sounds ridiculous coming from the person who just had surgery to remove excess skin. But I have had very good results with Pilates combined with resistance (hand weights and body weight) work and (no impact) cardio. Pilates has made a big difference for me. The skin I just had removed, I couldn't budge. But I have budged skin all over the rest of my body. I am sitting here one month post surgery, very eager to get back to it, I can tell in my belly that I need that tone work.

    You are exactly right, BELIEVE very strongly that goal -5 lbs is smart.

    BMI is accurate for me also. I used it as a tool to set a goal/maintenance weight. In other words it told me what I (personally) needed to lose in order to get rid of my belly. My belly was the biggest part of me, that is where I carried the most excess, and yes, it was also the very last fat layer to drop.

    1. Thanks for your input, Vickie. I'll add pilates to my list of things to try. I'm friends in real life with a pilates instructor. :) I have on my short list- resistance, MoveNat (learning to move naturally first), getting a coach to lift heavier- safely (only after I take the MoveNat classes) and I'll put pilates on there, too.

      My insurance discount is based on BMI and/or waist size (less than 35" for women). My family history and bone structure indicates I need to stay mid BMI or on the lower side- as I'm smaller than most 8th graders and stopped growing in 6th grade. The mid to lower BMI = least amount of viseral fat for sure!

  4. Well done... again. I absolutely agree about keeping weight to within a strict limit. Even with my small gain over Christmas, my clothes all still fit well. It is so much easier to lose a pound or two instead of trying to lose more.

    1. Thank you Lynda! Yes!!! Starting with a pound or two may go more slowly to loose permanently, but physically and mentally... so much easier. Good luck.

  5. I think you are doing AWESOME! For the majority of women in my family, your current weight is just a fantasy never realized.

    1. Thank you Marc. I'm really looking at strength and bone health this year. I'll always have to watch my overall weight. I look at people as they age and I can tell who is more active and and who is more sedentary. Active looks much more fun!

  6. You are awesome Karen! As for being a bit up? The scale is a funny thing. Even when I've gotten physically smaller, I can go up in weight...just the way that the muscle/fat thing works. That's why I don't weight regularly. It would drive me nuts!!!!!!!

    1. It's interesting, Leigh! My body has changed in small ways during the first 2 years in weight maintenance. I've got to say I've been okay mentally for the ride over the last 2 years.

      My slippery slope/emotional/binge/food addict would come out of remission and mess with my head more if I weighed in on the scale less... unfortunately- I've learned the hard way. I was high fiving myself that I could look back and tell the nurse practitioner that I felt pain on 12/18, but could see that I had inflammation from my ear infection starting around 12/4 to 12/5. Wow! Kind of cool..... good to understand what my body

  7. Very well done Karen. I don't think people realise the effect any infection has on all the body and it's reaction to it. Blood sugar levels often are increased as our body does it best to fight off those 'naughty germs' as my Grandson calls them

    I like the looser fitting blouse in your latest picture and the beach shot looks miles better than the awful rain and winds we've had in the UK.

    Happy Blogging for 2014

    All the best Jan