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Semi-new to this
10-23-2013, 04:21 PM (This post was last modified: 10-23-2013 04:24 PM by dsellsseashells.)
Post: #1
Shocked Semi-new to this
I can already sense that this will be a long post, so bear with me!

I just joined the forum yesterday with the intention of lurking around for a bit before posting, but I've decided to jump in with both feet!

I was chubby/overweight as a child. When I was 10 my mom (who was morbidly obese) went on a diet and decided that I was going on a diet too, which began an 8-year cycle of me binging on 'bad' foods whenever my mom was out of the house (or when I was out of the house and my mom couldn't 'catch' me). The penalties for not losing weight (I weighed in front of her weekly) were things like: my car being taken away, my tv being taken away, more stringent food restriction (she made my lunch and dinner, so...). Naturally none of this was particularly effective and I fluctuated between 180 and 215lbs for most of my high school years.

Went to university at 185 lbs and realized that, regardless of my mom's input, I really hated being fat. Started exercising every day at the school gym and restricting my calories and lost 40 lbs in 7 months.

A year later, I met my (now ex) boyfriend. Stopped exercising, started smoking copious amounts of a certain appetite-stimulating drug, and managed to find myself at 245lbs a year after we started dating. Hung out there for about a year. Got fed up and joined weight watchers. Lost 100lbs to sit at 145lbs.

Quit weight watchers to try and figure 'this' out on my own and to lose the last 10lbs. Went into mega-exercise mode for several years and did a bit of metabolic frying, I suspect. Started gaining weight. In January 2012, at 155lbs, I started working with Leigh Peele to try and repair said metabolism. This involvedeating at or above my supposed maintenance calories, which for me (being active) worked out to around 2500-2700 calories a day. Finished metabolic repair at 170lbs (ok, 169.8).

After my metabolic repair, I was devastated by my weight gain. I started restricting my calories to 1200-1300 calories/day, doing cardio daily, and taking apple cider vinegar a couple times a day ( I really do attribute some of my weight loss to ACV!). I managed to get back down to 140lbs between April 2012 and December 2012 by eating 1200-1300 calories 5 days a week and going wayyy above that (2500-3500 calories) on the weekends. Although I was happy with the fact that I didn't have to sacrifice binging on candy on the weekend in order to lose weight, the feeling of being totally out of control of my eating habits on weekends really bothered me.

In May 2013 I hired a nutrition coach to help me figure out how I could get control of my eating. Her first orders of business for me were to stop snacking all day (eat 3-4 meals instead of just grazing all day) and to increase my calories to 1800-2000 immediately, and stay there ALL week. I stopped weighing at that point because I feared that the jump in calories would really mess with my weight and head. In June 2013 I started training for my second marathon, which meant running 3x/week, doing 2 strength sessions/week, 2-3 spin classes a week, and about 1.5 hours of cardio on my own) and started eating around 1750 calories during the week and between 1900 and 2300 on the weekend. In my head this seemed like a lot, but now I realize that I burned between 400 and 2000 calories through formal exercise almost every day (terrible at taking rest days!!) between June and October 13, 2013 (the day I ran my marathon) which brings my net calories to...well, too low I think?

I haven't weighed myself since May (which is insane to me), but I tried on a pair of jeans that I use to monitor my weight and based on how they fit, I'd guess I'm around 150lbs (I was 140 in May). The fact that I packed on ~10lbs while eating an average of 1950 calories/day (if you average weekend and weekday eating) and burning ~4500 calories a week through formal exercise is what led me to consider that perhaps my metabolism is not as efficient as it should be/as I would like.

And so here I am. After my marathon on October 13, I was hit with a massive head cold, and so I haven't done ANY formal cardio since then - a first for me, I think. Even when I was doing my repair with Leigh Peele I snuck in some cardio. I've decided there's no better time than now to try and get my metabolism back on track and to really focus on body recomposition instead of just running for hours (this did NOT do my body any favours, composition wise!).

I'm hoping that between my repair with Leigh in 2012 and my increase in daily calories to 1750+ since May, my process won't be too 'dramatic' for lack of a better word. My plan is to increase slowly - I am starting at 1850/day - and to decrease my cardio to short sessions + my daily general activity (I love to walk) and really focus on the weights. I've just bought a new scale that measures body composition and hydration. The hydration factor was key for me in purchasing the scale I did because I'd like to be able to monitor the effects of different activities on water retention. Once I have my new scale, I'm planning to start weighing and monitoring my TDEE and how it affects my weight and increasing appropriately. This is going to be a scary journey for me, I know, but it needs to happen.

In the back of my mind, I'm fearful that I will never get 'better' because my mom, aunts, cousins, etc. all struggle with their weight. I've been raised to believe that our family has a faulty metabolism and that I'm doomed to suffer the same fat as my relatives (overweight/obese and rife with health issues).

Congrats if you made it through this whole post - I appreciate it happy I'm happy to be here and happy this place exists!
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10-23-2013, 07:12 PM
Post: #2
RE: Semi-new to this
I, too, thought for the longest time that I was "just a big girl" and that I would never be able to "look normal." It didn't help that most of the people in my family are pretty average weight-wise. And all of my female relatives are 5'5 or 5'6. At 5'10, and overweight, I was truly the black sheep. Plus, all of my relatives seemed to be able to eat brownies and nachos without any repercussions! It was especially awesome when my mom would see me reaching for a snack and say, "Do you really need to eat that?" Even into my twenties, if I went over to my parents' house and dove into a box of Rice Chex, my mother would say, "Stop carb-loading!" True, cereal is one of my "trigger foods" if you will. I can't control my portions. But since I began dieting at 14, I am rarely "full." Except on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and my birthday, during which I give myself a free pass to go nuts (and then usually end up with a massive stomach ache.)

The best was in college, when my mom and I were driving back to school after a break, and she said, "If you could just lose twenty pounds or so, you might get a boyfriend."

I realize that moms want the best for us, but they can sometimes be pretty crappy at going about it.
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10-23-2013, 07:19 PM
Post: #3
RE: Semi-new to this
Wow am amazing story. So happy you are here! I'm even happier that you are going to start weight training. I know you will love the changes. Just remember muscle takes up less space but the scale could go up... the same volume of muscle is heavier than the same volume of fat. So please don't get concerned if the numbers creep up a little. The more muscle you build the more fat burning power you have.

Take pictures and think about keeping a journal right here on the forum. Feel free to check mine out. I'm so happy I logged weight, measurements and took pics. It's awesome watching your body morph:-)


Eating more, lifting heavy and loving life!
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10-24-2013, 11:31 AM
Post: #4
RE: Semi-new to this
Thanks Lucia and Jerz. Lucia, I am definitely going to take your advice and start a journal - in fact, I'm goign to head over and do that right now happy
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