The weight of it all: Mini Yay!

Lost 2.2 pounds this week, woohoo!  I’m pretty pleased with that.  I know that there is definitely room for improvement with the eating and exercise, though.  I went to boxing class once last week but other than that, I seemed to find any and every excuse not to go.  But, I’m planning on going today, assuming the blood sugar is behaving, and again on Thursday.  I really wish I could go to the 6:15 – 7:15 am class but alas, I have to be at work at 8 and there’s no way I could get home and shower and be at work on time.  Even if I changed my hours to where I’d be coming in at 8:30, with commuting, no can do.  The gym keeps talking about adding a 5am class, which I’d be interested in.  I really like having my evenings free, which I think is part of the reason why I’ve been Miss Slacker-Pants on getting to class.

BUT, I know exercise is so important in maintaining good blood sugar control and losing weight so I just need to force myself to do it, even if I’m not in the mood.  Anyone have a spare T-Rex hanging around?

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Friday Fives – July 12.

1.  This week has been fairly “easy” on the dieting front.  I haven’t given it much thought – logged my calories and moved on with my day.  I haven’t been overly hungry or feeling annoyed that I can’t shouldn’t eat XYZ.  I’m feeling confident going into the weekend.  I wish every week could be like this on the weight loss-front!

2.  Sometimes, when I have a day that shows yellow on my CGM graph, I’ll change my high threshold just to see if it’s really that bad.  My current high threshold is 170, so if I change it to 200, voila!  Those pesky yellow lines disappear and I feel like I’m not the world’s worst diabetic.  🙂

3.  I really want to start going to some of these awesome Diabetes conferences!  Definitely a goal for 2014.  Hope everyone’s having fun at the Friends For Life Conference in Orlando!!!

4.  Apple with PB is my new favorite snack.  Yum yum!

5.  I cannot wait to see what my A1c is next month.  However, I worry that if it’s at or below 7.o I’m gonna be all, “Let’s make a baby NOW!” when I know that logically, it’s not quite time yet.

Happy weekend DOC!

The Weight of it All: Kicking and Boxing.

Well, I did OK-ish on the food front this week, however I don’t have a loss to report.  Honestly, I’ve been struggling, especially on the weekends, for the past month.  Since my nephew passed away, I’ve been turning to food for comfort.  Which is typical of me, I am an emotional eater.  Always have been.  This is a constant struggle.  I see food as comfort, a friend when I’m in need of one, a celebration, entertainment when I’m bored, etc.  I recently ordered Ginger Vieira‘s book “Emotional Eating with Diabetes” and am very much looking forward to diving into it when it arrives.  (Yes, I still read paper books.  Maybe Santa Husband will get me a Kindle this year? *cough*HINT*cough*).  I really hope this book will give me some tools to prevent over treatment of lows and to not abuse myself by abusing food.  I’ll be sure to post a review once I read it.

The husband and I have been doing a pretty poor job of planning our weekend meals, which has led to lots of eating out.  Related to what I said above, I have this mental block where I see eating out as a reward or celebration.  The little devil on my shoulder tells me I’m not going to go to a restaurant and get something boring like grilled chicken and veggies when I can make that at home.  I’m getting stuff I don’t normally cook  – fried goodness, heavy pastas, etc.  I think that the husband and I need to not only be better about including weekend meals in our menu planning, but I also need to remind myself that this is a journey and a process and going out to eat does not give me a free pass to throw calories out the window.

One victory I do have to post about is that I went back to the gym yesterday for the first time in over a month.  I had previously posted about a fear of exercising because my blood sugar seems to behave pretty erratically when I work out.  I’m really striving to keep things as steady as possible with less drastic blood sugar swings.  This was making me hesitant to work out because of the naughty behavior of my blood sugar during and after exercise.  But, after some encouragement from friends, I decided I need to face this head on.  I like boxing and, duh, exercise is good for everyone but especially for a person with diabetes.  So, I went to the gym yesterday and surprisingly, stayed level the whole time.  Started my workout at 169, ended it at 161.  I also was OK after too.  I’m going to continue to play with this and take meticulous notes on my phone of my basal rates, snacks I eat, etc. to see if I can figure out a good game plan for boxing days.  Go team?

My goals for this week are:

  • Go to the gym at least 2 more times.  (And make notes of snacks, BGs, etc. in relation to said workouts)
  • Don’t let the weekend derail me.
  • Make better decisions when dining out.
  • Remind myself that food is fuel and question myself if I am eating due to emotions or boredom.
  • And, not to fart whilst I exercise:

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The weight of it all: One down, many more to go!

WooHoo!  Lost a pound this week.  I’ll be honest, I didn’t get back on the calorie counting wagon as much as I had hoped this past week.  BUT, even though it took me a few extra days, I am now back on track and hopefully will see another pound (or more) gone this coming week.  It may be a semi-challenging week with the 4th and going to a baseball game on Friday (hot dog and beer anyone?) but I think I’ll be OK.  If I want to indulge, I will just make adjustments elsewhere.

On the recommendations of my CDE, a nurse during my yearly health assessment at work, and fellow blogger Allison :o), I’ve upped my calories to 1550/day.  Seems totally do-able and hopefully I’ll see better results by eating a little more.  We’ll see how it goes.  On the Diabetes Front, I’m aiming to eat less than 60g of carbs per meal to prevent those big after meal spikes.

Exercise is, well…there.  I’m struggling with it for a variety of reasons.  The main one is that my blood sugar seems to react differently to it on different days and I really am working hard to keep my CGM graphs as smooth as possible.  I need to figure out a solution though because I know how important exercise is to not only losing weight, but maintaining a healthy D-Life.  I don’t know if this means choosing a different form of exercise or just being more aggressive with trying new things as far as basal rates when I go to boxing.

My goal for this week is to not let the holiday and baseball game derail me.  And to be more focused on what I am eating over the weekend!

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The trouble with exercise is…

I love to box and kickbox.  Back when we lived on the Outer Banks I worked with an amazing trainer and really fell in love with the sport.  Back then, since I didn’t have a CGM, my routine was as follows:

-Test BG 15-30 minutes before leaving work.
-Test BG 1/2 hour into commute (my commute was 60 minutes long)
-If BG had dropped, eat snack – banana or rice krispie treat (I know, I know).
-Test BG as arriving to gym.  I usually would get there around 6, and class didn’t start until 6:30.  If BG was lower after eating snack, skip class or eat another snack (all this snack eating kinda defeated the purpose of working out!).  If higher, yay, enjoy class!

Not the most scientific of approaches, but it worked.  Some days after class I’d be high, in the 200-300 range, but most days I would be below 200.  I only had a bad low once – was in the 30s once after class.  No passing out and after a few glucose tabs and waiting a bit, I was fine and able to drive home.  Maybe I was more confident at my previous gym because I had friends there as well as my trainer who knew I have type 1 diabetes?  I don’t know.  All I know is that it did not stress me out nearly as much as it does now.

At this point in my life I was pretty blasé about my diabetes care and my outlook was more “one day at a time”, rather than seeing the whole picture (I had an A1c of close to 9.0 to prove it!).  Blood sugar high?  Bolus and move on.  Low?  Snack time!  Now that I’m trying to get baby-ready I am really working hard at keeping my BG steady with as few drastic BG swings as possible.  My CDE told me all about the deviation smart numbers stuff and how it shows how dramatic my BG swings are.  The way she explained it that if  my deviation is larger, this is no bueno.  She said that I want to be able to multiply my deviation by 3 and have the resulting number be less than my average BG.  If I can multiply it by 4, she said that’s awesome.  So guess what my goal is?  Multiples of 4, baby.

But, with the plethora of information that my CGM provides, I have almost a fear when it comes to working out.  See, the pretty graphs on my CGM tell me that my BG has no real pattern when it comes to exercise.  Some days it will go up.  Some it will go down.  I haven’t noticed if this is dependent on if I eat before class, as well as when and what I eat.  It just seems so random and without patterns.  This annoys me.  I do much better in life with diabetes when I can at least get an idea of what to expect.

This also stresses me out because I’m trying to keep my blood sugars as steady as possible with as few swings in either direction.  It’s easy to say, “Well, Laura, use the awesome tool of the CGM during your class and make adjustments as needed”, which I have been doing.  However, it’s a lot easier said than done.  Sometimes when I notice I’m rising, it’s almost like it’s too late.  I can set a temp basal to +50-100% and I’ll still creep up and remain high for hours after exercise.  It’s like a freight train you can’t stop.  Setting a temp basal to much higher than that while I’m participating in such a physically challenging activity makes me nervous, but maybe this is what I need to do?  Also, I’ve noticed that when I get really, really high I’ll crash and burn.  Maybe too much correcting?  I don’t know.  All I know is that it’s not so good for my innards and certainly doesn’t feel great while it’s happening.

I am not sure what the solution is.  I think that the first step is to keep better records of what I eat before workouts and when.  I don’t know if I should take a step back from boxing and maybe try something that is less intense like walking on the treadmill or yoga or weight training or something?  Something that is a more steady pace that may help prevent those nasty random spikes?  What say you, DOC?

The Weight of it All – June 25

As you can imagine with the sudden passing of my nephew, I have been slacky McSlackerson on the weight loss front.  In fact, for the past 2 weeks I haven’t journaled a single morsel of food or put on my boxing gloves once.  Sometimes there are other, more important, things to worry about and you just have to give yourself a break.  However, this break ends for me today.  The scale has crept up to 205.4 and, just, ewww.  I have had a long enough diet hiatus.  I’m not angry at myself, but at the same time I’m not going to allow myself to continue on this path.  I think Josh would want his aunt to be healthy and happy.

The Hubs and I are back on our respective food plans today (counting calories + exercise for me, super low carb + exercise for him) and I think we are both pretty motivated to get back on track.  I am going back to boxing tonight and am looking forward to hitting the bags and getting some endorphins in my system.  I’m sure it will be pretty painful but I need to rip off that band-aid and just get my butt in the door.

I am in a wedding in early September and although I don’t like to set number goals, I’d like to lose about 10-15 pounds by then.  I am going to focus on this and even if I don’t reach that goal, hopefully I’ll be a few pounds lighter and a few inches smaller!

Here’s to a good week!

The Weight of it All – Week 1.

After a week of watching what I ate, maintaining a reasonable calorie range, making an effort to be more active (4 boxing classes!), I….drumroll please….stayed the same.  Actually, if you want to get technical about it, I gained .2 going from 202.4 to 202.6.  Le sighe.

I don’t really know what happened, mathematically I should be down.  Although I was unable to stick to my 1300 calorie goal on non-exercise days and 1600 calorie goal on days I did workout, I feel that I did pretty well.  I weighed and measured everything and put every morsel of food that went into my mouth in my food journal.  My only real “slip ups” were a beer and Kiddie Meal at the movies, both of which I accounted for in my food journal.  Wah.

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These graphs don’t show last Tuesday when I started this journey, but on that day I consumed 1,695 calories and burned 890 in boxing class. (Have I mentioned how much I love my class?!  Cuz I do.  So happy I found this gym!)

It is not my special lady time, I am not sick, so why did I not lose 8 pounds this week?!  (I’m kidding, I know a reasonable rate is .5-2 pounds/week).  I did have a few low blood sugars which meant extra calories consumed, but I tracked them and they did not totally kill my days.  At one point this week I was down to 201.2, so I thought I was on track to have a nice loss.  Yes, I’m an every day weigher-in-er.  I do realize how much this can mess with your head, as you can see.

I am trying to keep my frustration at bay and just keep pushing forward.  Back in the day when I was on Weight Watchers, I remember how sometimes it would seem like my body was a week behind.  If I had a great week, I would stay the same, then follow that great week with a not-so-great week, and I’d lose.  Seemed my body would be on a delay.  So hopefully next week I’ll see some downward movement on the scale reflecting this past week’s hard work.

Goals for this week:

  • Keep the carbs to a minimum.
  • Eat more fruits and veggies, especially as snacks.
  • NO Lean Cuisines (I am way too dependent on these things).
  • Get to at least 3 boxing classes.

If anyone would like to follow me on My Fitness Pal, shoot me an email @ a1conceive@gmail.com and I’ll give you my user name.  I am always open to suggestions about my menu and food choices.

Here’s to a good week and remembering to be patient with myself!

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The weight of it all…

Although this is a Diabetes blog focused on day-to-day life with the disease as I try to get healthy to have a successful pregnancy, I can no longer ignore the elephant in the room…my weight.  (Elephant in the room…see what I did there?).  Anyway, I am finally coming to the point where I am ready to face my weight issue head on and I am ready to quit being lazy and in denial about it.  I kind of have to be.

I stepped on the scale this morning and was above my “scary weight”…I weigh, in interest of full disclosure, 202.4 pounds.  The highest I’ve ever weighed was 206 pounds and give me another few weeks of eating like a complete jerk, and I bet I’d be there.  I refuse to let this happen.  Enough is enough.

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Those endorphins were pumping!

About a year before our wedding, in September of 2011, I made the decision to get in shape, lose weight, and be a “hot bride”.  I wanted to lose 50 pounds.  I stepped out of my comfort zone and joined a kickboxing gym – something I talked about for months before actually ripping off the band-aid and walking through the door.  I was scared that it was going to be all these super fit, in-shape people and as an overweight woman I would not fit in.  I was so intimidated.  Luckily what I found was a friendly, supportive environment.  I started hitting (hitting, get it?) the hour-long kickboxing classes 4-5 times per week and within a couple of months was working with a personal trainer once a week.  The weight was falling off and in the meantime I was having FUN with my workouts and made some great friends.  In November and December of 2011 I participated in a Bootcamp, further pushing me out of my comfort zone and upping my results.

Also in interest of full disclosure, my doctor had also prescribed a low dose of Phentermine for me when I started on this fitness journey.  Something that I am sure a lot of people do not agree with, but she felt I was a good candidate for the drug.  Let me tell you, it gave me a lot of energy, as well as the hot flashes of a menopausal woman.  However, I really do think it helped me with my weight loss.  During this time I was losing about a pound per week – some weeks more, some weeks less.  I was driven.  I was dedicated to my health.  Nothing was going to stop me.

Until we decided to move.  A bunch of factors went into our decision to move – I was severely under-employed and had a long commute to my entry-level job, my husband was a contractor at the time (working from home) and we felt that if he lost his contract there were minimal employment opportunities for him in our coastal town, we are planning on having a family in the future and the medical facilities in our town were not exactly top-tier (I had to drive almost 2 hours for my endo appointments, pain in the neck when one is going weekly during pregnancy!), real estate costs at the beach were outrageous, etc., etc., etc.  I received a job offer in early 2012 and we made the decision to move in early spring.

I’m not going to lie.  My head knew it was the right decision, but my heart was screaming, “nooooo!“.  I was falling into a rhythm with our life on the Outer Banks.  After living there for 2 years I was making friends, getting in shape, and could honestly say that with the exception of the long commute/job situation, I was whole-heartedly happy.  Moving was an adjustment, to say the least.

During our first six months here I focused on the wedding.  I believe knowing this date was coming really helped me with my diet – I counted my calories on My Fitness Pal and luckily only gained 5 pounds from the time we moved to our wedding day.  I did not reach my goal of losing 50 pounds, but I lost about 30 and that made me pretty darn happy and proud.  I think that had we stayed at the beach and I continued with my trainer and gym, I would have met my goal, but I cannot think like that.

Our honeymoon was perfect – we relaxed, slept in, explored, oh, and did I mention ate and drank our faces off?  We returned from the honeymoon in early November so I got in the mindset of “It’s holiday season!  My birthday!  Thanksgiving!  Christmas cookies!  Traveling!  There’s no sense in trying to start a diet now!  I’m going to enjoy myself.”  And enjoy myself I did.  I think I went to the gym three times in November and December.  Whatever, I’ll start over in 2013, it will be my year.

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Not quite at my goal, but much closer than I am now!

Since we moved last April, I have been what I like to call “gym shopping”.  I had such a great experience at my previous gym that I refused to settle for a ho-hum environment.  First I tried a chain boxing gym.  Hated it.  It smelled and the people just weren’t friendly.  So I quit.  Then I found another local chain gym that had sort of a subset Muay Thai (kickboxing) school.  I liked it, but the schedule annoyed me – classes were from 6-7 so I wouldn’t get home until close to 7:30.  Plus it was really, really intense and I always got partnered with a woman who, I swear, never washed her hand wraps.  (Imagine gym socks that never see Tide…hand wraps get NASTY!)  So I bailed.  Finally, late last summer, I found a smaller gym that had boxing two nights per week and kickboxing on Saturdays.  In between it had bootcamp type classes.  I liked this gym but was not a fan of the price, $100 per month.  After the wedding, I found myself going less and less and finally decided to quit back in March.

Recently a new boxing gym has opened and I have joined.  It opened about a month ago and I’ve gone a handful of times.  Every time I go, I really like it.  The problem is that I just find excuse after excuse not to go.  Laziness wins out every time.  I cannot seem to find that drive or focus I had when we lived at the beach.  It just isn’t there even though after each workout I think to myself, “I need to remember how fun this is and how good it feels tomorrow when I’m talking myself out of going!”.

I am letting myself slip into this unhealthy lifestyle of eating whatever I want to eat and spending my evenings sitting on the couch instead of moving my body.  For diabetes blog week, I even posted about how I’d selfishly temporarily trade places with someone who is paralyzed so that I can celebrate what my body can do.   I’ve been inspired by blogs touting the importance of exercise even when we don’t feel like it but then as soon as I close the internet window, the inspiration goes along with it.  I’ve been in a slump and I really want to get back to that kick-ass woman of 18 months ago who was happy, confident, and high on endorphins.

My husband has been doing a fantastic job of losing weight.  We’ve dedicated this year to the year of getting healthy and physically ready for a baby.  I feel like a complete jerk that he has been so focused and doing so well and has been doing it on his own.  He’s lost almost 50 pounds and his drive and dedication is admirable.  I’m so proud of him.  I wish I had an iota of his dedication and perseverance.  He has mentioned to me a few times that losing weight is so much easier as a team and I know that it’s been tough for him to watch me not have the drive to do this.  But still, living with someone who’s on a mission still hasn’t been enough for this couch lover.

One would think that the thought of having a healthy pregnancy and baby would be enough to motivate me.  Up until now, it hasn’t.  Yes, it’s motivated me to become more vigilant about my carb counting and properly bolusing for my meals, but it has done nothing to kick me into gear with weight loss.

But I know that I have to do this, like it or not.  Maybe that is the first step in the motivation process – getting angry enough at myself to punish myself with an exercise and food plan.  Maybe after a few weeks, once I see some results, it will get easier and become a habit.

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Time to put down the fork..

So for now I am going to “fake it til I make it”.  It’s going to suck and I know that, but I am going to track my calories on My Fitness Pal and go to the new boxing gym at least 3 times per week.  NO EXCUSES.  I am going to limit my calories to 1300 on days I do not exercise, and 1500-1600 on days that I do.  Oh, and my beloved beer and wine?  No more.  I typically burn about 800 calories in a boxing class.  I cannot continue to let my weight creep up and do nothing about it.  I am 32 years old and will likely be 33 by the time we start trying to conceive.  If I’m going to do this, I need to do this now.

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…and pick up the boxing gloves!

I am going to check in every Tuesday with my weight and progress and a quick blurb about how the week went.  I ask that you call me out on any excuses I make, because really, there are none unless I’m lying in a hospital bed.  I have the time, I have the resources, I have the support…

And, speaking of elephants, really, how cute is this guy?