Day 56 (Sun 10th July 2016) is finally here. I celebrated this morning with a slap up breakfast cooked by my little brother Ian! It’s been a long old eight weeks, but I have learnt things, lost weight, lost body fat and improved my blood sugar levels and food cravings.
Total weight loss 7.4kgs (16.3lbs)
Total body fat loss 4.9% (using bioimpedence scales)
Total visceral fat loss 1.5% (using bioimpedence scales)
Awaiting my HbA1c blood results… but daily readings have been more stable
Food cravings have reduced (based on my journal entries)
Analysing the results: I’m pleased with my weight and fat loss. Yes I could have done better if I’d have stuck rigidly to the diet and exercise plan, but I live in the real world and not some ideal, easy, predictable and balanced world.
So what have I learnt?
I loved trying the new recipes and experimenting with different food combinations. Here is my first try of grilled Halloumi cheese with mushrooms and cashew nuts (breakfast). I also found it really helpful to have the menu planned out for me so I didn’t need to think about what to have, whether it was nutritionally balanced, and what the calorie count came to.
I was already aware of the importance to plan ahead, but having a specific weekly menu helped me to shop for just the ingredients needed for that week. Cutting down the number of trips to the shops helps to avoid ‘hunger shopping’ and ‘impulse buys’. It also cuts down on food wastage.
A lapse is just that! When I screw up, all that needs to happen is get back on the wagon quickly. It doesn’t mean I have to write the whole day off. Neither should I get into compensatory behaviour… “oh I’ve eaten too much now, I’ll skip the next meal” or “I’ve eaten twice the portion size I meant to, so I’ll now go and work it off in the gym”. This kind of behaviour leads to erratic eating and exercising.
Routine for me is important. I struggled with the suggestion of only eating two meals on Saturday and Sunday. As the weeks went on, I tended to have my ‘two meal days’ on weekdays when I was busy at work. At weekends, knowing that I was only having two meals per day and less structure, proved problematic. I would relax and thoughts would then turn to ‘unwinding with some nice food’.
Staying active is harder when injured or when suffering with a long-term health condition. I aggravated my left Achilles tendon on the Friday before starting the Blood Sugar Diet. Although I altered my training methods, this has still impacted on the amount of intense HIIT sessions I’ve been able to do, and my daily step count while out walking. The leg cramps and muscle weakness also hampered the volume of exercise I could do.
However, there is still PLENTY of activity that you CAN do, even with an injury or a debilitating medical condition. Yes it may need a bit more creative thinking, but that’s what a Specialist Personal Trainer can help you with! As I showed in my Week 7 blog video, being active has so many benefits, and can take such a short amount of time, there really is very little excuse not to engage in it.
Progress is progress, however slow, every little bit helps. If you genuinely can only do 5 mins of moderate exercise at any one time, then that is better than sitting on your backside doing nothing. Sometimes I get frustrated that I’m not seeing bigger results. I’m tempted to put my worth and value onto the number showing on the scales, or how my gym stats add up. I remind myself that every day I take that step forward I am getting fitter and healthier. There will be better days and not so good days. That’s life. There are ebbs and flows, and I need to let them come and go.
Mental attitude plays a big part in life. To make any type of change in your life, the approach needs to consider mental, physical and spiritual. Therefore what you eat, how you stay active, and how you deal with stress and emotions all need to be looked at. Keep it to bite sized pieces to avoid getting overwhelmed, and try not to take life too seriously! Plan in some fun down time too.
Finally, develop strategies for lots of different scenarios… and rehearse them. Keeping a journal helps me to see patterns in my behaviour. I can identify trigger points which lead to danger times where I’d be at risk of going off plan. Having a list of things to do in those situations, and keeping that list on me for when I need to refer to it, definitely helps.
So… what’s next? Well, I’ve still got some weight to lose, and there is always room to improve my fitness levels. There are many more Physical Challenges that I want to take on too.
I’m taking stock of what I’ve learnt and am coming up with a follow-on plan.
Watch this space!!! The journey continues…