Thursday, May 29, 2008

Day 24 - Halfway to step one.

Going by the daily weigh-ins, I hit 258.5 today, a 2.5 pound daily loss from yesterday; This is a big milestone for me:
  • first reading in the 250s (in a long time.)
  • 50% of my initial goal (from 282 to 235)
  • last weight before my BMI drops below 35 (which is the cutoff for severely obese if you have other health risks like I do.)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Cat Food?

Someone asked (but not in the comments, OH NOES!) why the 20 pounds in the last post was linked to a bag of cat food - the bag weighs in at 20 pounds!

Being able to look at a physical object that corresponds to the loss is very helpful. I certainly don't want to carry that bag of cat food around all day every day anymore, and the fact that I have been for some years now is rather disconcerting. What else is lurking in there, I wonder?

Do you have a reminder you keep to help you maintain?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Day 22 - Week 3

Official 3 week weigh in this morning is 262, for a net loss of 20 pounds so far.

Still not quite back to my daily low of 261, but since this has come more gradually, I'm sure it's gone for good.

Blood sugar this morning was 65, and I was feeling it. I've been cutting back on the insulin, will continue to do so, and to make sure I'm eating all the carbs I can on this plan. My control has never been good enough to worry about lows before I started this plan. I am now making sure I carry the glucose tabs everywhere, and checking my sugar 3-4 times a day.

Reading Think Like a Pancreas, a loaner from my mother; The short history of diabetes technology over the past 100 years or so was very instructive. (Basically, I have it good and need to quit complaining. =-)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Day 21 - Weekends Suck

So I have typically found it more difficult to stay on program (any program!) on the weekends. When I'm at work, my choices are much more limited, and I can't just wander over to the fridge or the cupboard.

I'm doing much better with this on this program than I have in the past, but yesterday, for example, I basically substituted another real meal for one of the medifast meals.

I think it's great that my “cheating” on this diet consists of extra vegetables and roast chicken, but will definitely have to be aware of when I'm going over. I was obviously completely oblivious before, or my blood sugar wouldn't have been so high: Fasting sugar this morning was 68.

3 week weigh-in tomorrow morning. See you then.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Day 17 - Fat Deposition

For those who think there's no justice in the world, the scale has reversed my incredible loss yesterday, and a few more days besides, bringing back above my 2 week weigh-in.

The 5 day average shows a steady, downward trend, however. (Apparently this is why some of my diet buddies recommend the thing!)

Trying to convince my better half we need a beam scale so any daily fluctuations are at least a result of my own crazy body and not inferior technology.

Fasting blood sugar holding steady in the high 70s/low 80s after a small dip in insulin.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Day 16 - Quantum Fluctuations

Still doing the daily weigh ins, even though I'm not reporting in every day; had an unusual reading today, though, which I thought I'd share: a six pound drop from yesterday, bringing the daily loss to 21 pounds in 15 days.

I'm sure it's part of a multi-day fluctuation, but for now, I'll bask in my 45% of goal.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Day 15 - End of Week 2

Had my 2 week weigh in this morning. Down to 267, a 15 pound loss in two weeks. Because I had a slight dip below there, my five day average is 267.5 at the moment.

My fasting blood sugar over the last five days has ranged from 75 to 83. I am now experimenting with a slight reduction in my insulin (was up to 80 units daily) to see if I can maintain the just-below 80 fasting reading with less.

I'm currently 32% of the way towards my initial weight goal of 235 pounds. At this week's current loss levels (ignoring the 9.5 drop the first week), that would put me at about July 1st. It probably won't go that fast, but I still haven't added my exercise back in yet. I plan on doing that this week, and will report back.

I need to start planning how I'm going to do with a week away from home on this plan. I suspect I'm going to have to switch to using mostly shakes and other cold mixes, and carry a lot of bottled water. Anyone have any thoughts on that, please leave a comment.

Friday, May 16, 2008


Switching the widget on the main page of the blog back to showing percentage of goal based on daily weighings rather than the 5 day average.

I get that the 5 day average helps you feel better when you're going up and down, but that's not the case on this plan, at least for me.

Day 11 - onward and downward

Yesterday for lunch, the guys at work asked me to go to lunch for sushi; said yes without thinking about it; then went anyway thinking I could find something safe at lunch. Tried out a new Japanese place near Crossgates Mall, had a sashimi platter; at the time I was very hungry, but it kept me full for some hours.

Last night was rough - there was a dinner function the entire family went to, and I had already planned (even before the sashimi) to not eat anything there. I had a bar (my second of the day, even though I'm only supposed to have one a day), but by the time we got home, I ended up throwing together a salad and putting in a can of tuna (which, of course, didn't compare at all to the tuna I had for lunch).

So I ended up doubling up on bars and probably went over on my allotment of meat for the day, too. I was concerned, but woke up this morning after a sound sleep to another 1.5 pound loss, and a blood sugar of 75. Woot.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Day 10 - One Stone

Doubling up on the shakes when I didn't have enough time didn't hurt (and probably helped, I know I don't want to go below a certain number of calories a day or my body will go into starvation mode instead of fat burning mode); down another 3 pounds today, and blood sugar dropped back down to 90.

One problem I've noticed the past few days is that I can't seem to get as little sleep as I used to. If I stay up late, I'm getting up late. 2 weeks ago, I could have dragged myself out of bed. Yawn. Going to have to cut back on the late night gaming.

Another problem is that I'm going to have cleaned up all my corners of the house by the end of this week and will then have to come up with something else to do with my nervous energy.

For all of the three potential UK readers I have, as of the weigh in this morning, I'm down one stone.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Day 9 - just another day

Today went by pretty fast.  Brother in law was out yesterday, and I ended up oversleeping this morning, so I got a late start.

Ate out for lunch with some friends (steamed chicken and vegetables); spaced out the meals a little too far the rest of the day. In order to get my full set of meals in, I had to double up on two shakes, even. Though I did that about 3 hours ago. Guess I could have waited, I thought I'd be asleep by now!

Blood sugar was up today, but only to 100 or so; but the weight was down, so it's all good.

Hopefully I'll get a few more days where I'm not constantly thinking about eating and start to settle in for the long haul… and as I'm settling in and things are more regular, I won't be posting every day. I'll definitely post the weekly weigh ins, and anything interesting or unusual.

Please leave a comment if you have any questions about the plan.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Day 8 - First full week!

“Official” weigh-in this morning puts me down 9.5 pounds for the first week!

Sugar up a measly 2 points today to 81.

Spoke to my diabetes educator yesterday; She was cautiously optimistic about my participation on the Take shape for life plan; she doesn't have any other patients who have followed the regimen, so I'll be kind of a guinea pig for her. The initial numbers look promising, but she shares my concern about what happens after the initial low calorie jumpstart.

I'm definitely planning on meeting with her after my next run of bloodwork; I'm going to want as much support as possible going off the powder and onto real food to make sure I don't backslide on the weight or the blood sugar.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Day 7 - Ups and Downs


First full week of the program ends today. A lot of people have been reporting 10+ pounds the first week, and I was on target for this until this morning's weigh-in cut my loss so far in half. Switched the little widget on the site to report the progress towards goal in terms of the 5 day average (now that I have 5 days of data and every day isn't a loss. =-) My theory on the one day reversal? too many pickles!


Today's gain isn't demotivating at all, though! My blood sugar is down to 79 this morning. This is low enough for me to (at least today) discontinue one of the blood sugar medications I'm on. This is much more important than a single day gain.

I'm perversely lucky that I have the blood sugar readings to fall back on as another indicator for how well the program is working; Though really, it's one the main reasons I got on this program, and to have it be down in this range after six days is a real win for me.

Tune in tomorrow for the official one week total. Post your guesses in the comments.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Day 6

Blood sugar at 87 second day in a row. Feeling pretty good today!
  • Fit into a shirt I haven't been able to squeeze into for a while
  • Did 35m of cardio (bike riding around the neighborhood). Low impact, but very nice.
Mother in law came over for Mother's day today. Raye grilled some food and the whole family was able to eat together outside together.

Another small loss today, woot. 

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Day 5

Heard back from my doctor's office yesterday ; there's a plan now for cutting back on medications as my blood sugar drops. Fasting dropped again to 87 this morning. If it hits 80, there's one I can drop entirely, after that, I can start dialing back on my insulin.

Lunch yesterday was no problem. Got steamed chicken and vegetables. Came with rice, but the waiter at Emperor's was very helpful when I asked for the rice to go before I dug in.  Not having it on the plate made it much easier to ignore. Had some hot sauce on the side. (Just spice, nothing at all creamy.)

Felt like crap last night, tired and weak. Fell asleep (not in bed, sadly!) about 10:30 or so last night, woke up at 10 am. Thanks to Raye for managing the kids this morning (er, that's pretty much every morning).

This is my first day at home on the plan. Hopefully I won't fall back into any old habits today.

Weight loss is proceeding nicely.

If you're subscribing this via a feed, there's a widget on the main page that shows the progress so far. I figured that would be less annoying that daily posts of "another six ounces!".

Friday, May 9, 2008

Day 4

Oh, right, the wife!

I neglected to mention, Coke-focused blogger that I am, that my wife Rachael (a.k.a. Raye) is also on the program with me.; She's been doing well on Atkin's, but switched to this program too. It's not an easy switch to make, and I really appreciate it. I think long term, it's going to be very beneficial for us both to be following the same program. Thanks, Raye!

Raye fired up the grill last night, and I stopped on the way home at the fish market and got some tuna steaks for us both. Best. Food. Ever. I suspect I'll be saying that about every non-powder meal I eat for the next year. =-)


I mentioned in Day 1 that I'm on the diabetic version of Medifast. This basically means that some of the powders (and all of the bars) I get through the program are slightly different; otherwise, it's the same program. Just fewer calories, and different nutritional additives specifically for diabetics…

…And it's working. While I have another small-but-measurable weight loss today, my fasting blood sugar this morning was 98 (mg/dl), which corresponds to an A1C of 5.5; I think my last official A1C was about nine; probably the highest it's been since I was diagnosed five and half years ago.

Here's my fasting readings this week by day:
  1. 189
  2. 149
  3. 129
  4. 98
And at least so far, the readings were solid all day. Now, I'm on four different medications for my blood sugar, but the reduced calorie intake (in pretty much a complete absence of real exercise) has had an amazing impact.

I am now going to go call my doc and see what we're going to do next: I need to have a plan if this is going to drop another 20-30 points tomorrow. I am very hopeful that I'll be able to eliminate some medication due to the program. Improving my glucose control was one of the main reasons for me to start this program, and to have this feedback in the first week of the program is very helpful.

Finally, I'm also taking my "lean and green" (Medifast-speak for the one real meal you get a day) meal at a restaurant today. I have it planned out what I'm going to get, and I should be able to fit this in to the program.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Day 3 (updated)

Another small loss today.

My target goal is 235 pounds, by the way; It's not a final goal, but I needed an intermediate step where I could see myself at, and then I'll have a better idea of how much I have left to go from there.

SDN, who commented yesterday, was just telling me how his self-image has changed as he's lost weight; I have the same block now he had before he started losing: I can't really imagine myself at, say, 200 now. I hope my view of 200 to be very different nearly 50 pounds from now.

235# goal: 10%

That seems like a high percentage to me for Day 3, but there's a lot of anecdotal notes about TSFL having a steep loss curve. I don't think my goal is too small…


If you care at all about how the food tastes, I highly recommend mixing thoroughly. I just had some cream of chicken soup that had very big chunks of powdery balls (and so it was watery at the same time.). It was edible, but by no means yummy. I may have to bring in some hardware other than spoons and plastic containers for meal prep. Maybe if I go for some bigger plasticware, I can use a regular size whisk.

Thankfully, the shakes mix just fine by… shaking.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Day 2

Day 2 of the plan started out with a screaming leg cramp, but was followed up shortly by a daily weighing that showed a 4.5 pound drop since yesterday. So that's alright then.

I'm sure this is just mostly fluctuations, but it's a nice kick off.

Food so far today tastes a little better. Nuking the hot stuff (like the directions say) instead of just adding steaming water makes a big difference. Of course, it could just be me acclimating.

Haven't gone to the gym yet this week (been doing 3 days a week, 30 minutes of cardio), but did a 30m walk in the woods near work today.

As expected, the lack of decision required in picking food is helping. So is the fact that you have to eat every 2.5-3 hours; what's the point of cheating if you get to eat something soon?

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Day 1

Started the Take Shape for Life program , which uses the Medifast food. I'm on the extra special diabetic plan, which has a lower gyclemic index for type II's like myself.

While I was up to 285 pounds last week, my (official starting) weight this morning was 282. Also have a 48 inch waist to contend with. While I've been bigger in the past, this is as high as it's been in a while.

I am very excited about the program. The local cardiologist's office is running the program, and their meeting with current and potential members was quite motivating.

I'm hoping to improve my general fitness, and see some improvement in my A1C and maybe reduce some of the 10 medications I'm on. (Oy.)

I am hoping that the relative lack of food choices on the plan during the initial phase will be beneficial; no thoughts about portions, no more effort than selecting a pouch when trying to decide what to eat.

After a single day, I don't really feel deprived at all. The food is very nearly un-food like, but it's just fuel. And the one meal with real food I had today tasted great. (It's not all powder and bars.)