My Weight Loss Journey
For 30 plus years I have struggled with my weight and lost the battle. I've tried many times to lose weight and always ended up weighing 10 pounds more when I got done than I did when I started.
At the end of January this year my doctor called me in and told me that I was well on my way to becoming diabetic and that I really needed to lose some weight. As he was trying to explain to me the role that carbohydrates play in becoming diabetic he asked me if I was familiar with Dr. Atkins work. I said no and he dropped that line of discussion and went on to talk to me about the problems being diabetic would cause. Since my mother had been diabetic I was all too familiar with that scene and knew that I didn't want to go there.
At that point in my life I as almost 62, weighed 330 pounds, my fasting blood sugar was 135 and my total cholesterol was 235. I have slept with a CPAP machine since 1987 because of sleep apnea. And I had no idea how I was going to do anything about any of these problems since I have never been successful before.
The next day as I was walking through the local Sam's Club store I saw a display of Dr. Atkins books and decided that I could afford to invest in myself and see what my doctor had been trying to explain to me. It took me a day or so to get around to reading the book "Dr. Atkins New Diet Revolution Revised", but once I started it I knew almost immediately that this was going to work for me. By the time I had read to the end of the chapter on the Induction Phase I knew that I was going to try it.
I started my new life on the 4th of February, 2002, which was a Monday. By mid afternoon on Tuesday I knew that I had found the answer. On the 8th of February I went to dinner with some people I used to work with and even though I had only lost two pounds I announced that I was on this new diet and was going to lose 180 pounds. I know that none of them believed me.
As I write this it is the 334th day of my diet. I have already lost 166 pounds and only have 14 to go to my goal of 150 pounds. I am now focused on toning up my body with the Bowflex machine and refining my diet to the way I expect to eat for the rest of my life. The last time I weighed 150 pounds was 1967.
Because of my size and lack of energy I had not been able to do much exercise for several years. When I started the diet I could not walk across a room without running out of air. About three days into the diet I found that I had the energy to start an exercise program and began to walk. It took me almost an hour to walk a half mile at the beginning. I am now walking thirteen and a half miles a day at a pace of three to sometimes four miles an hour. And I've only missed sixteen days walking since I started that program in the first week of my diet. And those day were spent riding long distances on my motorcycle which I had decided in January that I would have to sell because I could no longer ride it comfortably. I have taken two long trips on the bike this summer. One to Dallas TX in early June and the second in September to KC, MO to visit children and grandchildren. On this second trip I was able to camp out and sleep in a tent without my CPAP machine for the first time in years.
On the 10th of May I added 30-40 minutes a day on my new Bowflex to my exercise program. This has given me a real boost in strength and energy. But it has slowed down the rate of weight loss. I'm sure that is because of the muscle I've put on.
I have been able to stop taking several prescription drugs that I've had to take for the last 15 or 20 years. For the first time in almost thirty years I no longer have to take medication for my blood pressure. And as of the 22nd of August I was able to get off the CPAP machine I had used since 1987.
On the 10th of October I had a wonderful visit with my doctor. For the first time in thirty years I was told that I did not need to schedule another visit for a year. And all of my blood work was normal. No liver or kidney problems. My HDL's have gone from 34 to 78, triglycerides from 231 to 45, and blood sugar from 135 to 76.
Because of the amount of weight I had to lose and the desire to get off the CPAP as soon as possible I stayed in the Induction phase of this diet until this last week. I'm sure that I have not been out of Ketosis since the 6th of February. I am now slowly starting to add some more carbs into my diet as I approach my goal. I set a goal when I started of losing 180 pounds by Christmas. I didn't make it, but I did lose half my body. And I know that I'm as healthy now as I have been in at least thirty years and I look forward to being able to do lots of fun active things in the years to come. My life has been changed by this diet. For the first time in my life, I believe that I am in control of what I weigh and what size I am. And I find that exciting!!
To help me succeed I have taken pictures on the first day of every month since I started the diet. You can see those pictures on my web site. I also measure every Monday and weigh every day. I have charts and graphs of the entire process. I am still in the process of posting these on my web site but they should all be there soon.
If you would like to follow my story on-line you can find it at the link below.