Diet, Exercise, and Vitamins Part 2

About a month after I had made up my mind to shed some weight and improve my body by the time I turned 40, I remembered reading a post on Money Saving Mom. About 6 months prior, Crystal, the writer of Money Saving Mom, wrote about how she was quitting a plan she followed because she was losing too much weight. Hmm…. that sounded like a good problem to have! I dug around in her archives and came across Trim Healthy Mama (THM).

Whoa! This eating plan seemed like the answer I was looking for. I didn’t want to go on a diet because personally I think diets are unhealthy ways to control weight. I’m not one to cut out certain foods or starve myself to lose weight. I needed something I could maintain for the rest of my life. And my mommy brain couldn’t handle counting calories or points or anything else.

I requested Trim Healthy Mama Plan: The Easy-Does-It Approach to Vibrant Health and a Slim Waistline from our local library and dived into it. The biggest bonus to the plan that I found was I didn’t have to remove any of the foods I enjoyed from my diet. I just had to modify how I ate them.

Chocolate and ice cream are necessities in my life. Period.

{More on the removal of certain foods in another post, because those who are familiar with THM may not agree with me about chocolate and ice cream.}

What is Trim Healthy Mama?

It is a lifestyle way of eating, not a diet plan. Two sisters decided they wanted to lose weight and eat healthy at the same time. They found a way that worked for them and then wrote a book about it. Their way of eating especially appeals to women because it is a lifestyle eating that can be maintained through pregnancy and nursing.

The general idea behind THM is that our body burns carbs one way and fats another way. If we eat carbs and fats at the same time, we confuse our body and the nutrients and energy aren’t utilized as best as possible. As a result, the non-utilized things turn into fat. People who follow THM eat carbs and fats separately with 3 hours between the fuel types.

After quite a bit of reading and learning, I started THM on March 1, 2016. My goal was to jump start my metabolism because I knew it wasn’t working properly. No amount of exercise would help without a jump start. (At that point, I had been exercising for a couple of weeks and saw no weight loss.)

Since kick starting my metabolism was my goal, I started with what THM calls a “fuel cycle” week. Now, if you are familiar with THM, you will know that they recommend saving a fuel cycle until you understand the categories of food and the way to separate fuels. However, that’s in the revised edition of Trim Healthy Mama Plan. (That link takes you to the revised edition.) In the original book, they suggest starting with the fuel cycle and give suggested meal plans. Since I read the original book first, I decided I liked the reasoning in the original book over the revised edition and I went with the fuel cycle. I will admit that doing a fuel cycle week in the very beginning is not for the faint of heart. It. Is. Tough. I actually managed to do 1-1/2 weeks on the fuel cycle. My metabolism was at full speed by that point and I had to give up and feed my body what it needed or else I was positive I would die of hunger. 🙂

Did Trim Healthy Mama work for me?

The first week I lost 4 lbs. The second week I lost 1 lb. From there on, I didn’t really lose much weight until after 10 weeks. I knew to hang on and keep going and not give up because everyone’s body is different. I qualified as what the book calls a “turtle” when it comes to weight loss. Once it starts, it moves along slow and steady.

Somewhere around the 10 week mark, I started losing 1-2 lbs per week. I turned the big 4-0 at the end of June and managed to miss my goal weight by 1 lb. But that pound disappeared the following week so it was all good. 🙂

By the 6-month mark I had permanently lost 15 lbs. And by the 8-month mark I had lost 20 lbs. I say “permanently lost” because at times the number on the scale was a few lbs less or maybe a few lbs more. My average weight over the course of a month is what I consider my permanent weight for that month.

{A side note about weighing in on the scale … Be consistent and weigh yourself at the same time each day. I weigh in first thing in the morning. After a few months, females will discover that weight fluctuates naturally over the course of a month thanks to menstrual bloating. If you are consistent with weighing in daily, you will recognize the pattern. However, if you only weigh in two or three times a month you may get discouraged because you are weighing in on the wrong days and actually see a false weight gain.}

The 20 lb mark was where I felt okay maintaining and I kind of slacked off on exercise and following the eating plan exactly. I know that if I want to lose a bit more, I could without too much trouble. But I’m okay with where I’m at. Losing more means investing in yet another wardrobe so I’m going to wait a bit. 🙂

And, honestly, I didn’t have a lot of weight to lose. Another 10 lbs and I would be like Crystal and headed to the “underweight” side of the scale.

Stay tuned for my likes and dislikes of Trim Healthy Mama as well as my vitamin regimen…

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