Since May I’ve been on a “No fun” diet and I’ve lost about ~30 pounds. This is a significant amount of weight for me after hitting my peak. I’m sleeping better, less back pain, heart rate down, my clothes don’t fit anymore, people are noticing; all good for me. The approach isn’t clever and has been a process of elimination and substitution.
- Eliminating Diet Coke, substituting tea
- Eliminating dairy (milk, ice cream, cheese, etc), substituting oat milk
- Eliminating fast food, substituting premade meals
- Eliminating alcohol, substituting water and juice mocktails
- Eliminating candy, substituting gummy vitamins
- Eliminating unnecessary sugar
- More vitamins for stress-relief
- Only eat when I’m hungry (usually 2⨉/day)
- Going on more walks
On top of all the eliminations and substitutions, I’ve focused a lot on reducing stress and disrupting the stress response cycle. This had an immediate improvement on my weight and heart rate. My resting heart rate is down >10bpm. I don’t recommend operating your heart at 120% for months on end. I can carry stress, but my body interprets work/life as a potential bear attack and stores calories as fat for a run that I’m never going on. Figuring out how to disrupt that response cycle is critical.
As any fellow fat person who knows, it’s actually somewhat trivial to lose ~10% of your body weight through an elimination diet (alcohol, breads, sugar, pizza, etc). I’ve eliminated most of those, it worked. But the calories-in/calories-out math starts to break down. Metabolic rates come into play and your body says “I’m stressed, let’s be fat again.” It eeks its way back to the last calorically satisfied save point. If this was the first time, I’d be frustrated… but this the umpteenth time…
Dr. Internet says “you need to eat more” and at the same time “you need to introduce fasting”… so, y’know, science. I wish I was passionate about macros or whatever, but I’m not. And I’d rather go to jail for stabbing someone than take advice from a skinny person.
I’ve hit the familiar plateau where pounds don’t fall off anymore. Some days the scale goes the other way! That’s discouraging, but not as discouraging as losing thirty pounds and seeing a real-life doctor about a sinus infection and he tells you on the way out of his forty-two second visit, “Also, you’re overweight and need to work on that.” Thanks, doc, I hadn’t realized. You fat-phobic fucker.
In related news: I’m looking for a new doctor.
The one big tool left in my tool belt is to introduce more activity… like a lot more. Like a “Does he even have a job still?” amount more. Like 2-3 hours a day gym rat shit. I know how that story goes: work out for a year or two, knock off five or so pounds, get injured, go back to fat. But… I’m doing better at the food and sleep sides of the weight-loss triangle, so it might work this time.
I’m okay if I plateau here, I’m grumpy about food but have a new baseline I feel I can maintain. I’d love to continue the downward trend but it’s walking an impossibly a thin line where I have to do everything right. I feel like this is something that only fellow fat folk understand. All because my body is adept at converting stress into fat and I make a living babysitting computers.