Day 357

Yesterday was a very long and busy day. I have no problem teaching a twelve-hour day, but usually when I teach, the lectures are broken up with labs that the students do. The class I have been teaching during the day these last two days were lab-free, which meant my only breaks from lecturing were for the morning and afternoon breaks (fifteen minutes each), and lunch (an hour). The evening class started the minute the daytime class was finished, but thankfully there were a couple of labs for the students to work on while I finally rested my voice… and of course finished yesterday’s journal entry.

I know I should not be worried, but today is the first day of my transition onto the full meal-replacement program. It is the first day that I will not be eating a meal. I had my first meal replacement this morning, and while it was no different from how I started my day yesterday or the day before, I somehow feel less sated by the shake. It is as if my body knows that there’s nothing more substantial coming later in the day. I have to steel my resolve and get through it. I remember from the last two times that I started on the full program that the first few days are not very pleasant. It is only when the ketosis kicks in (the process by which your body burns its own fat for energy, rather than carbohydrates) that I will be back to full energy. Until then, I can expect my mood to be unpleasant (to be polite). Fortunately for all (other than myself), I can be pretty good at masking that to the outside world. It would not do for me to snap at my students!

I wrote yesterday that I was worried about how I would adjust to the smaller meal (one piece of chicken instead of two). I am pleased to say that I got through it just fine; my food intake consisted of my morning meal replacement (around 8:30am), my daily meal at 1:00pm, and a meal replacement bar around 7:00pm. I do not know if I actually forgot to eat anything else, but I know that I was extremely busy and distracted, and I did not really feel hunger until I had the bar. When my evening class was over, I essentially poured myself into bed; I watched TV for an hour or so before trying (unsuccessfully) to sleep. I was a bit hungry as I watched, but I knew that eating late at night often had consequences on the bathroom scale the following morning. If the hunger grew into a real discomfort, then I would have eaten something. All of this to say that the reduced-size meal was a success, and when I do transition back from the strict program, I will be implementing that as the new normal.

I started on a modified program in January last year, and I wrote back then that I knew I was still eating a lot, but that with my size I would still lose weight. I also said that I would make adjustments to the program when it was necessary. When I get back to the modified program, this will be the third adjustment that I am making. The initial modified program included a meal at lunch, and then a salad (with protein, such as a can of tuna or salmon) at dinner. I eventually cut that down to the one meal, which I would eat in the evenings. The next adjustment was to change that meal from the evening to midday. The fact that the daily meal was usually two large pieces of chicken never bothered me because they are mostly healthy protein. I was still losing weight, so it was working. Now, knowing that I have been on this plateau for two months, I have to admit that it is time to make the next change. With that said, there has been so much cheating in that time; I am not only talking about the occasional handful of peanuts; I mean eating out with friends (and with Leslie when she was in town), and snacking, and a few other things that I will not rehash (that were mostly all discussed in these pages). Whatever the cause (which includes stress, anxiety, injury, and mental health issues in addition to the cheating), it is time for me to break that barrier and get past the plateau. You cannot make changes by doing the same thing… so there it is, my next big change; I will be reducing the size of my one daily meal (when I go back to having one daily meal).

Around New Years Day I posted on one of the Facebook groups that I have lost ninety pounds in the past year, and that I hope that a year from now I will be able to post the same thing. If I can, that would mean a total of one hundred and eighty pounds lost… and down below my weight in the months before I enlisted in the Army. Of course, there is no way that I will ever have that physique again… but how nice would it be to get there? I mention this because only a few days ago I was thinking to myself that if I cannot lose any more weight, and the best that I can do is getting to the 300-pound mark, then it would still be an accomplishment. I know that I can do better though, so I cannot think like that. I cannot be satisfied by half-ass results that I get from doing a half-ass job on the program. I know from personal experience that if I dedicate myself to it, I can do so much better. It was only two and a half years ago that I weighed forty pounds less than I do today; I know that had I not fallen off the wagon, I could have done better then. I know I can do it now… I just have to remember that every day, and so when what I am doing is not working anymore, I have to re-evaluate what that is, and make changes.

Princess Sophie is on a play date today with Charlie; his mom saw me dressed in my jacket and tie and commented on how spiffy I look. It is the first unsolicited compliment I have gotten on my new look, and I am happy with that. I am rethinking my shirt-jacket-tie combination, but I am glad that someone noticed.

It is almost 10:00am, and it is time to get ready for class. I will end here, but as it is the first day of my new changes, do not be surprised if I end up writing another article today.

Have a great day folks!

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