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Monday, December 30, 2013

Belly Fat Cure Diet Cheat Sheet

I've just put together a quick guide for the Belly Fat Cure Diet plan that I wanted to share with you all! If you are are pinnert, please be sure and follow me on Pinterest! I've just created new boards for Belly Fat Cure: Breakfasts, Lunches, Dinners, Snacks and How-To. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

My First Marathon

At the starting line, ready to go!
 I almost didn't do it. I almost just chickened out and stayed in bed that morning. God, that would have been so simple. But instead I got up at 4:40am, rubbed my body with runners glide (to avoid chaffing), pulled on a few layers of untested running clothes and headed out into a 21 degree morning to catch a bus to the starting line of the California International Marathon.

I trained for about three months and followed Hal Higdon's Beginners Marathon Training Plan to the "T", until I couldn't. Turns out, newbies like me get injured. Our bodies break down and we get sick too. Then we get scared. Check, check and check! My training started out great and I had worked up to 15 miles and was really feeling great. Then I injured my calf, and that changed everything. I thought I pulled a muscle and began seeing a Chiropractor who specializes in runners. We were able to work through it, he said I was over training and said to cut back on miles and up my protein intake. He said to eat my weight in protein ounces.  But I lost any speed I had and my lower legs never felt the same again. They always hurt, whether it was a 3 mile or 20 mile run.

My 19 mile training run was demoralizing, and I was starting to feel isolated and lonely. Then two weeks before the race I got an awful cough and chest cold. So I started telling myself, and a few friends, that I was done. I didn't have a strong enough core and I wasn't really a "real runner" anyways. But they reminded me why I chose to run a marathon and that I had done all the hard work. Even walking into the Expo the night before, my legs were sore, still sick and I was freezing cold. Everyone around me seemed so young and fit, I definately felt like an outsider.

But I got up early last Sunday morning and caught a bus to the starting line. The bus was filled with experienced marathoners with lots of last minute advice. I stayed on the warm bus until just a few minutes before 7am, then lined up near the 4:40 Pace Team. When I first started training, before I got shin splints, calf pain and my chest cold I thought I could do it in that time. But I knew that wasn't possible anymore. I had decided to implement Jeff Galloway's run/walk method and did Run a Mile, Walk a Minute the whole race.

At mile 2 I shed my extra shirt, and was down to two long sleeved shirts, running tights, knee-high compression socks, gloves and a banana that kept my face and neck warm. At the first water station, the water was frozen, the street was an ice skating rink and half the potta potties were frozen shut! Did I mention it was cold? And it never warmed up and was below freezing nearly the entire race. I got to the half way mark about 5 minutes off my normal Half Marathon time, I was about 2:25 into the race. I was so surprised and thrilled to see my husband and boys there! That was a surprise. Apparently my husband completely forgot about our meeting arrangements on the course! Miles 15-19 were the hardest and I ended up walking here and there and not feeling too motivated. I stopped and used a porta pottie and when I came out it was a whole different group of runners and the people I had been running with were all gone. It seemed like the course had cleared out too. I remember another runner coming from behind and saying "Come on, we can do this!" and I nodded was like "Yea" and he said "No, COME ON!". And I was like oh, okay and started running again and got back on program. I was still cold, but realized both my shirts were soaking wet from sweat.
Mile 24, slow but still running
Miles 20-23 were fine because I knew I was going to see the family soon and wanted to get there fast. I didn't want them waiting out in the cold wondering what had happened to me. So I ran, but I was running very slow. At Mile 23 I didn't see my family and realized I was all out of energy chews. If I didn't find them, I'd have a hard time getting through the last part of the race. Right when I had given up, there they were! My 12 year old was ready to run the last three miles with me, and off we went! He took off really fast and I had to say "Oh no honey, Mom is running slooooow". I had high hopes that we would have 30 minutes of great, deep conversation. Instead it just flew by and consisted of mostly "You okay?" and him encouraging me.

Finish line with my boys
I finished in 5:22, which I'm just going to chose to be happy with because I did it! I was scared and I over came it. My sister was with me in spirit the whole race and I learned a lot about what I am capable of. I don't foresee anymore full marathons, but I finished with a big smile on my face and joy in my heart.

BTW, not only did I not lose weight training for the marathon, but I put weight on! So I'll be rededicating myself to Jorge Cruise's Belly Fat Cure for the new year. And again reminding myself it is diet that sheds my weight, not exercise.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Missing Her

When I lost my sister, I also lost my best friend and a mother figure. I lost a person I talked to on the phone pretty much every day... sometimes a few times a day. I lost my biggest cheerleader and supporter. I lost someone I truly loved and who I know truly loved me, faults and all. Soooo it's been a rough few months! I can only take comfort in knowing she isn't suffering now, because the last four months ravaged her body and mind.
Misha and my men, a few weeks before she passed away
To deal with things, I've stayed very busy. Mostly it was things I had already agreed to do or host before Misha got sick. At first it was very hard to be around people, especially larger groups. But I had made lots of commitments and I wanted to follow through. A few times I burst out in the ugly cry when I least expected it out in public. The worst had to be Misha's son's High School graduation, that she could not attend. It broke my heart, because he was her world.

I gave the Eulogy at her funeral, and I'm so glad I was able to do that. Family, friends and coworkers filled up the church to overflowing. Hundreds of people came to say goodbye to Misha. They played the song Longer Than with a slideshow that was beautiful. The same song played at her wedding, in the same church, 33 years ago.

One month after my sister passed away, I attended a funeral for a friend who had fought a very long battle with cancer. Two other friends asked me that night to run a full marathon with them, something I had thought about once before but decided I couldn't do it. I had not been running much, and only had 100 days to train, but somehow it felt right. Like something I could do for Misha's memory. Running out on the trails brings on tears and laughter with thoughts of her, but then I can move on and there is only the squirrels and deer to see. I can actually feel her cheek pressed against mine, just like in this picture, sometimes when I run. 

So I'm training for the California International Marathon on December 8th. I'm doing it to make my body strong and to honor Misha. And when it gets hard and I'm tired or hurt, I think of my sister and her chemo, radiation, surgeries and constant tests. In four months she went through so much and she was so brave.
Me working really hard at the end of the San Jose Rock n' Roll two weeks ago
Lots can happen between now and then. So far I've built up to 17 miles and ran the San Jose Rock n' Roll Half Marathon last week as a training run. Keep your fingers crossed that I don't get (more) injured and can run the race! I know Misha would be FREAKED out by this, but would still support me. I miss her so much and this is how I'm dealing with my grief.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Beautiful Sister Misha

Last night my beautiful and loving sister Misha Cain, passed away. She was my closest and dearest friend. Much more than a sister. She was always there for me, just a phone call away. She never judged me and she always listened. She gave the best advice. Sometimes she set me straight, told me to suck it up and get over it. But she did it, somehow, the right way. Mostly she said "Oh, I hear ya!" because as the older sister, she had been through it all before. She was always funny. Always made me feel better.

She always read her comments here and got such a kick out of helping people. Out of respect for her children I haven't posted much about her battle with Glioblastoma Multiforme, a very aggressive brain cancer she was diagnosed with in April. She fought it so bravely, with so much love in her heart and for all of us. I was able to spend quality time with her the last few months of her life. I am so thankful for that. Some of it in tears, and some of it laughing. Much of it dancing and singing, since she loved music so much.

You are loved Misha Cain. You are missed.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

LaCroix Coconut Sparkling Water

So exciting when you find a new Low Carb/Low Sugar item that you <3 Love <3! My sister Jenny introduced me to LaCroix Coconut Sparkling Water and I quickly became obsessed!

I've served this up to many friends and family members, but none of them really liked it. It tasted like summer, a really watered down Pina Colada or sun tan lotion. LaCroix says "Only all natural flavors are used to flavor LaCroix Sparkling Water. These flavors are essence oils extracted from the fruits." It has 0 carbs, sugar, calories and sodium. Just just sparkling water!

While many of the other LaCroix flavors easy to find (Berry, Orange, Pample Mousse, Lime, Lemon and Cran-Raspberry) Unfortunately the Coconut is difficult to find. Whole Foods is a consistent source, and sometimes I can find it at my local Targets. But many times a Target won't carry Coconut it at all, or do carry it but is out.

If you like the flavor coconut, give it a try! I'm looking for fun recipes to make a low sugar mixed drink this summer too. Let me know if you have any ideas!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Zucchini Spiral Recipe

For the Husband's birthday I wanted to make a special veggie dish and came across this recipe, that I decided to modify for both our diets (Me=Low Carb, He=Mostly Vegan). It was actually pretty easy to make, even though it looked intimidating. He usually doesn't have any eggs, but a friend gave me several from her backyard chickens, and those are A-Okay with him.

It turned out beautifully and impressed the Husband! It makes a nice side dish and yet another way to use the versatile zucchini like a noodle.

  • 3 Green and yellow zucchinis
  • Large Carrot
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • Cream
  • Garlic
  • Cheese (I used brie, but any white cheese will work)
  • Diced Bacon (optional) 
I used a cheese slicer to cut the zucchini and carrot into long thin strips. You could also use a Mandolin. Blanch the carrot strips for about 5 minutes in boiling water. Then I laid out several strips and started to roll them. As the wheel got bigger I had to wrap the strips around it instead of roll it. Move the spiral to a casserole dish. Then I covered it with pressed garlic, poured over the cream and egg mixture, and the (optional bacon and) cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until golden brown

Friday, June 7, 2013

The 100 by Jorge Cruise

Jorge Cruise's latest diet book is The 100 and all about counting only SUGAR CALORIES. Jorge defines sugar calories as total carbohydrates, multiplied by 4. Your allowance for the entire day is 100 sugar calories, or 25 total carbohydrates.

Plan Summary:  On The 100 plan you concentrate on proteins (meat, fish and poultry), green vegetables (like spinach, zucchini and kale) and limited dairy (cheese, creams).  These are considered Freebies and you should fill your meals and snacks with these. Most of these are extremely low in carbohydrates, thus low in sugar calories. When you are eating things other than these Freebies you need to add them up and make sure you don't go over the 100 sugar calories for the day.

Jorge has a lot of books, so how is this one different? He is always trying to find ways to make the low carb/low sugar diet easier to follow. Many dieters have a lot of trouble letting go of the idea of counting calories, so this book addresses the Low Carb dieting while incorporating calories. Honestly, it isn't anything new if you are already following Jorge's other diet books plan. It is basically a very strict version of his original Belly Fat Cure, the plan I lost my weight on.

Jorge also has several new videos on Youtube. Check them out! I really found his videos helpful and motivating while I was losing.

The 100 is available on Amazon for $15 and $11 for the Kindle version. If you are just starting out and have a lot of weight to lose (more than 20 lbs) I really recommend you go with Jorge's Belly Fat Cure book instead. It is a great plan that can be maintained over a long period. Use The 100 when you get closer to your goal or when you are stuck and hit a plateau.

The 100 Book Trailer
ps. That is my Belly Fat Cure buddy Ryan in the video! Check out his blog HERE.

Update on my sister:  She has been hospitalized for over a month, had a few major surgeries, but is about to finish up her first round my chemotherapy and radiation. We are really hoping she will respond well to the therapy and I'll be spending a month with her this summer.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

10 Steps to Success on Any Diet

It doesn't really matter what diet you choose, clearly people have been successful on all of them. Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Atkins, Paleo or whatever new diet has just popped up. For me, Jorge Cruise's Belly Fat Cure was the right choice, but it just clicked for me at the right time and place. What matter is that you are consistent and stick with it.

Here are 10 steps to be successful on any diet:

10. Don't Wait to Start Dieting - Start right now... right this very minute. Yes, NOW! Oh, you don't have all those weird foods recommended on the diet, that come from Whole Foods and cost a bundle? Who cares, you don't need them. Zucchini, cauliflower, spinach, plain oatmeal, eggs, chicken and some cheese will feed you for a week. The store down the street has that, right? Make the very next meal you have, be the first meal on the diet. Waiting makes room for excuses.

9. Don't Cheat - Obviously, right? But really, don't cheat. If you are truly hungry and have used up your Points, calories, carbs or sugar for the day (whatever unit of measure your diet dictates) then have some of the Freebies. For me, on the Belly Fat Cure that means instead of having a candy bar, have a few squares of the allowed dark chocolate. Instead of ice cream, make a protein shake with lots of ice cubes tossed in. You get my drift --> substitute the cheat food for an allowed food. You will thank me in the morning.

8. If You Do Cheat, Forgive Yourself and Forget About It - If you cheat or slip up, start the very next meal 100% on the plan. Don't say "oh I ruined today already, I'll make it a cheat day and start fresh tomorrow". Nope! Do it NOW. Recommit right this minute. Because your carb starved mind will think of a dozen excuses between now and morning as to why you should just quit. Don't give it another thought and make sure you are stocked up on good choices so it doesn't happen again.

7. Keep Your Eyes on the Prize - Everyone's "prize" is different, so what is yours'? Mine was to fit into single digit sized clothing again - Hello Size 8! Maybe your prize is a special event, a wedding, reunion, summer in a bikini or just any bathing suit. Maybe it's to just see your toes again. I bet they are beautiful toes worth seeing, and painting bright pink soon. Keep looking down, because soon you're going to see them.

6. Take it One Meal at a Time - It is easy to get overwhelmed when starting a new diet, especially if you have a lot of weight to lose or have failed before. Just take it one meal at a time, and baby steps will get you there. Don't over think it and start thinking "I can't do this forever" or "You mean I can NEVER eat pasta again?" Instead just determine "I stick to my diet for this meal" and remember that at each meal. The choices will become more natural and your cravings to certain foods will lessen with time.

5. Don't Rely on Others - You have to do this for yourself. It's okay to ask a friend or family member to join you in your weight loss plan, but maybe they aren't ready for big changes. So let them be, and remember - this is about you, not them. Maybe you will lead them by example, maybe not though. This is about you and your health, and others need to find their own way.

4. Keep it Simple, Stupid - KISS basically means to not over think or make it more difficult than it already is. If you are allowed X number of calories or carbohydrates, then have them! Don't arbitrarily pick a lower number, thinking you will lose the weight faster if you have even less. By restricting yourself even further, you are more likely to binge or cheat. Keep it simple and just follow the rules of your diet plan. Once you've had some success and learned more about what your own body really needs, then you can play around with your diet's formula a little. But not in the beginning, it just complicates things.

3. Every Pound Counts - Don't ever let me hear you say "I only lost 1 lb this week", because every single pound counts and every single, little bitty pound will get you closer to your goal. Congratulate yourself and commit to losing at least as much next week. Instead say "Wahoo! I lost a pound this week!' Celebrate every pound lost.

2. Get to Know Yourself - What is the hardest time of day with food for you? What food can you not, no matter what, control yourself with? For me that is evenings, after dinner and before bed. And just like the back of the Lay's Potato chip bag says, I cannot have just one. Only a bag will do :( So I avoid chips completely, I know for me they are trigger food. For the first few months of dieting I made a very low sugar shake right after dinner, to help with the old "full feeling" my body still craved.

1. Don't Let The Scales Dictate Your Success - Those scales can be so, so cruel! I remember standing on the scales Monday mornings, bladder empty and naked, with all my breath pushed out (cuz that air has to weigh something, right?) only to see the same old number. I'd curse at that scale, and sometimes even cry. That happens. But stop and take inventory: Don't you feel better? Is your clothing feeling looser? Keep up the good work, and next's week weigh-in will make it all pay off. Don't let one bad weigh in spoil your success.

If you have a tip to diet success, please share it in the comments!
More diet success advice HERE

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Glioblastoma Multiforme

The following is a post from Misha, my oldest sister, who frequently writes on my blog about her quest to lose 100 lbs. The irony is that, we calculated today that she probably lost 95 lbs since she started. However, about 30 lbs of that has been in the last few weeks. Obviously, she isn't dieting anymore, but she still loves reporting her weight loss to me :)  She is extremely thankful to have those extra pounds gone now, so she can face this battle with a healthier body. We read her the comments left here, and they always raise her spirits.

My dear friends, I have decided to post my story today. I am sorry that I was not able to speak to each of you individually first.

On 3/30 I had a seizure. After some surgeries and a lot of tests, I have been diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of brain cancer called a glioblastoma multiforme.

But this is what I want to tell you. This thing did not take me. I could have been driving and it could have been over right then or I could have hurt someone else.

I cannot explain to you the overwhelming sense of peace and happiness that I am experiencing everyday! It's no secret that I have already had the most amazing life and everyday is sweeter than the day before.

I fall asleep every night in the arms of a man that I fell in love with in 1977 and he is my rock. My children are my pride and joy and my parents and brother and sisters just pour love on me everyday.

My hope is that you realize that everyday is a gift, to take, to find joy, passion, another chance just to smile and be touched or touch someone.

I feel that I have a lot more tomorrows and do not want you to be sad for me. We tend to have this odd little ego trip of immortality, but the truth is we really don't know how much time we have. My secret to you is, we have today! Find your joy today!

I love you all!
Misha after brain surgery with her beloved Sugar Free popsicle
You can read all of Misha's posts HERE

Monday, April 15, 2013

Asking a Favor

UPDATE 4/27/2013: I wish I had good news to report here, but I don't. My family is going through something very unexpected, confusing and frightening. It is just to painful to share, and frankly saying or typing the words is surreal. Misha tells me to remember that the only thing that matters is those you love, and to remember to tell them that everyday. I love you Misha.

Tuesday morning Misha, my oldest sister who frequently writes here on my blog, will be undergoing brain surgery. A lot has happened over the last two weeks, all of which she is recovering from really well. But in the process they found masses in her brain that need removed and biopsied. She wants to tell you all herself, but currently she can't do that.

So I'd like to ask for your positive thoughts and prayers, and encouragement for her and her family. She always reads the comments here, even from the hospital bed. My gut says she is going to do great, no matter what they find. But still she has many daunting days ahead and your support would will mean a lot to us both. Thanks, Amber

Monday, April 1, 2013


My sister is currently in the hospital for health issues, so she won't be writing her update this month on her goal to reach 100 lbs of weight loss. Despite some scary stuff, she is going to be okay and hopefully will write all about it when she can. Her birthday is Tuesday, so if you have a moment leave a quick comment for her. I know it will cheer her up when she is able to read this and feeling better!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Book Review: The Aging Cure by Jorge Cruise

Jorge Cruise has a new book out that is all about how his Belly Fat Cure and Fast Track plans can help you fight aging. The book has several 7 day planning menus which account for 3 meals and 2 snacks. It all sticks to his BFC 15/6 Sugar/Carb counting method. For the first time he has even included a Vegetarian and Vegan menu and a one with several fast food and frozen meal options. He includes a nice list of low sugar and low carbohydrate foods that are high in antioxidants.

By my count the book has over 40 recipes, along with the weekly menus. Jorge's website also has a lot of information on the Aging Cure, including a sampling of of recipes, found HERE.

My own experience with aging and Jorge's plans? Well, I feel better and think I look much better than I did before the diet. In fact, my sister told me that I look better now than I did in my 20s! I'm 43 BTW. I feel good, but not that quite good.

"Your Waistline Predicts Your Life Span"

But, there is a lot to be said for a fatty face, in that it plumps up wrinkles. In fact there is a whole specialty of plastic surgery where fat can be removed from the stomach, thighs or other fatty areas and transferred by injection to the face. I do feel like I have many more fine lines around my eyes than I did before. In fact, I would have said I was wrinkle free before I started this diet. But that could just be on age too. In truth I'd rather by 54 lbs lighter with some eye wrinkles than overweight and wrinkle free, if those were my choices.

The book is $12.95 for the spiral bound copy and $9.99 for the Kindle version at Amazon. If you are a big fan of the Belly Fat Cure diet plan and are looking for reinforcement or new menus and a few recipes, this could be a good choice. But my strong recommendation is start with the Original little blue Belly Fat Cure Book. It is all you need in my opinion!

Friday, March 1, 2013

100lbs: 14 Month Weigh In

Risky Business
March? Wow. Now THAT was fast. Are you ready for Spring? I’m down 1.6 pounds for the month of February. Yup – I wish the number was bigger, but I’m still heading in the right direction. I believe that’s 57 pounds down. I had a lot going on for a short little month. The snow didn’t affect us too much in NE Oklahoma, but my son’s ride to his monthly Drum Corps camp up north was snowed in at Wichita and we decided to make a “quick” trip up to Wisconsin and hang out for the weekend. In the old days, a road trip would have meant total abandonment of any food program I was attempting to follow, but I did great. I’m sure being cooped in a car for 24 hours didn’t do my body a lot of good, but I stayed true to my Wheat Belly Diet. Eating on the road brings its own set of complications to the “table.” It takes some planning, and that’s what I wanted to highlight this month.

I’ve been strictly following my diet plan for 14 months now. It’s allowed me to have some insight to some of my weaknesses. One of the worst ones is PROCRASTINATION. I work best under pressure, or so I thought. That adrenal rush that I got from waiting until the last minute were just a substitute for the feeling of calm and accomplishment when I plan for things.

When you don’t plan, you are flirting with disaster, flying too close to the sun, and taking risks that can lead you down a slippery slope. Ok – enough euphemisms. What is boils down to is, I’ve made changes in my life to keep “life” from just happening to me. Sure, things still pop up, but I keep a PLAN B close at hand. For example, I keep protein shakes in my desk at work. I keep protein bars and a ziplock of raw nuts in my purse. I keep bottles of water and aspirin in my car. I keep veggies and frozen chicken breasts in my freezer. When last minute things happen, I’m ready for it. I know longer want to have excuses, I want to have a plan. Granted, it takes some creative thinking, lots of willpower, but mostly, just desire. You set your goals, visualize them and understand what it takes to get there. And every step you take, you examine if this decision will get you closer or farther away from your goals. Once you look at your life like this, it empowers YOU to decide which goals are important to you, and which aren’t.

Some friends and family find that they simple cannot resist certain foods – like tortilla chips at a Mexican restaurant. “I can’t be good if we go out for Mexican!” Oh baloney! Tex-mex fare is one of my favs! When it’s just me and my hubby – we tell them “no tortillas or chips, but bring the salsa.” If I got out with carb eaters and chips come to the table, it’s really no problem anymore. I have goals and eating those chips move me farther away from them. Simply not much of a risk for me anymore. But – If I’ve skipped my breakfast, head out for lunch late, have a headache – well, then it does become Risky Business. And I don’t mean Tom Cruise-dancing around in his underwear- business. I mean, Katie- bar the door and eat until I bust- business. I don’t set myself up for failure any more. I’m worth the forethought and the planning. I’m worthy of my goals – And so are you!

So – to review me and my plan – I’m following the Wheat Belly Diet – a low sugar, grain free approach that fits my lifestyle. I’m recovering from some feet/ankle issues, so not fully embracing exercise. Although, I’m starting to train for a 5K in April. (YIKES! That’s the first time I’ve said that out loud!) I’m 52. I’m short. I have two kids and been married for 32 years. I came close to gastric bypass surgery in the fall of 2011 when my sister Amber helped me get my arms around visualizing losing this weight (over 100 lbs) one month at a time. We came up with a plan to lose 100 pounds in a year. While I did fall short of that number, it was simply a way to get me on board with making the changes I needed. I only weigh once a month to keep me focused on the plan, not the number. I get easily discouraged when the scales don’t react the way I think they should. I think this REALLY helps me. This year, I’ve decided to add a “free” meal once a month. Truthfully, I’m not really craving anything this month. So I was thinking I might just have some popcorn at the movies this weekend. I do have an actual Chicago pizza in the freezer that’s been waiting for me. We’ll see.

On a personal note, we had to make the hard decision to put down our beautiful 14 year-old Australian Shepherd last week. I cried until my stomach cramped. It was one of the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I’m getting better every day and I’m thankful for the time we had with Toby. It’s a good reminder of all the good we have in our lives and realize there is so much to be thankful for in a busy world.

I hope this note finds you in good spirits and ready to take on March with a plan in hand! How bad do you want it?

I'm so thrilled Misha shared a full body photo with us! I think she looks GREAT! My sister Misha (read her full story HERE) writes a monthly post for my blog. She is following the Wheat Belly Diet, which is very close to Jorge Cruise's Fast Track.

Monday, February 4, 2013

100lbs: 13 Month Weigh In

Happy Groundhog Day! It's February and I'm losing weight again; down 3.8 pounds for the month. That does include those pounds I gained last month, but I'm not going track it that way. I also haven't decided that I'm going to include the fifty-some pounds I lost last year in my count. I think I will keep my 2012 and 2013 losses separate for now; let last year stand on its own and shoot for losing more this year. I know I can.

So,where do I start? Lots to talk about. Ok. My favorite purse was stolen between Christmas and New Years. But something kind of neat happened. I had to get a new drivers license. Wait, it gets better. So I go in, fill out the paperwork, give them my fingerprints and sit down for my new picture. The civil servant submits the picture and the fingerprints...and they don't match! The facial recognition software didn't recognize me! She looked at the old picture on file and said, "I can tell that it's you, but you've lost a lot of weight! I'll have to call OKC to get an override." I couldn't hear the conversation on the other end, except for the other gal saying, "Wow! She has lost weight!" So, that was nice. Not only a couple of strangers could see the difference, but software said I wasn't the same person! And I'm not.

I had a previous old license so you can see the difference for yourself. And on the heals of my first gain last month, I've gotten more compliments than ever before. Just what I needed! But oddly, I read something this month that said,"what others say or think about you, is none of your business." Hmmmn. Very interesting. I kind of like that. I'm doing this for me. I don't do it for the compliments. BUT, when it is positive words, I like that too. At my size, it's hard to actually see the difference. So I love it when someone reminds me that I am changing. But all those negative things people say, yah, HATE that. So maybe I can change the saying to, "surround yourself with positive people; ignore the others.

Any so, my new twist for this year... I've added a multi-vitamin AND I've actually started walking extra steps this year. My feet issues seem to be in check, so I'm good to go...And the biggest chage is....drumroll please... One free meal a month. So of the 1100 meals in a year, 12 of them are going to be whatever I want, whatever I've been craving for 30 days. A couple of rules: I eat it out, not at home so it's over and done with, no lingering leftovers and I'm not going to talk about what I ate so I don't glorify it here or in my head. No sexy retelling of each bite. Why a free meal? Well, a year has now turned into two, and will turn 3, 4, and infinity. So I've basically got to do this for the rest of my life. There is no "diet until you lose the weight, and then back to your old habits." And that, my dear sister is the best lesson you've taught us! Taking it off... Yay! Keeping on top of it and keeping it off is the amazing part! So, we've got to find a sustainable lifestyle.

With the one free meal a month, I can get rid of those crazy cravings. Last year, I went almost 12 months without cheating. Those last few weeks got the best of me. With this plan, if I have a craving during the month, I don't fret and squirm, I just make a note...hmm man... If I really want that, I can have it after my next weigh in. I'd like to have that free meal on the 1st or 2nd, but if there is a special occasion, I'll save the meal for then. I think it will work for me.

That being said, I did it. It felt really weird. I felt yucky and guilty and queezy. I was very conflicted. I explained it to the lunch work crowd I was with, and they basically laughed at me and didn't get it. So, didn't like that. (Not my business, right?) and I kept flirting with thoughts like, hey, I wanted potato chips, I'll just have them as a snack dessert, (I didn't) and I wanted ice cream, (I did). But next time I'm going to plan it better. In fact, I had almost decided I didn't need a free meal because I hadn't really been craving anything. But at the last minute, the work crew decided to go to one of my favorite restaurants (where I hadn't been in over a year). I decided to our off plan as we walked in. That was stupid and not satisfying at all. Planning is the key.

So, we'll see how that works out next month. Let's recap what I'm doing:
 *  The Wheat Belly Diet - a grain free, sugar free, low carb approach.
 *  Weighing only once a month - taking the emphasis off the scales and back on the behavior. I also hate those little ups and downs that daily and weekly weigh-ins bring.
 *  Eating one free meal a month.
 *  Walking.
 *  Being a better version of me!

I'm really excited about my plans for this year. Are you set for 2013? Let's do this together and make it happen!

Total Pounds Lost: 55.8

My sister Misha (read her full story HERE) writes a monthly post for my blog. She is following the Wheat Belly Diet, which is very close to Jorge Cruise's Fat Track. I told her I would support her no matter what diet she chose! I thought my readers could really relate to her weight loss struggles, which are different than my own, and at the same time help get her the support she needs. I'm really excited she has decided she wants to keep it up in the new year! I'm trying to convince her to write more regular posts too...

Monday, January 7, 2013

Jorge Cruise on Anderson Cooper Live

Jorge Cruise was on Anderson Cooper Live last week. He was actually on two separate days, one for a few weird exercises with Carmen Electra and another day with Melissa Joan Hart and food comparison. I thought the food segment was great and pointed out a few really common food mistakes that are made when trying to avoid hidden sugars.

Jorge also has a new version of his Sugar and Carb Counter book out. I've seen bad reviews for the Kindle of the book, that it isn't easy to search which would be the whole point of having a mobile version of a reference book. I haven't seen in personally yet, so I couldn't say. Here is on review of the original Sugar and Carb Counter book. However if you are planning on buying just one of Jorge's books I recommend the original blue Belly Fat Cure Book.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

1 Year, 100 lbs: End of Year Weigh In

Happy Wheat Belly Birthday to ME!

Happy New Year everyone! What an amazing year I've had. When I decided last December that this would be the year that I took control of my weight, I wondered how I would ever make it through an entire year! I've learned so very much while following the Wheat Belly diet. I knew that bread, pasta and other grains were something that were interferring with my ability to lose weight and being satiated. This last month, I think I learned even more.

I hung on to my good habits through the first part of the month, but lost my will and my focus the second half of December. I kept focusing on bad things, foods and emotions mostly. I think I found myself with the holiday blues. I had two hamburgers with half a bun, so that was the only wheat in the year; but I kept allowing a little sugar here and there, until I actually ate a whole candy dipped carmeled apple. The next morning, I woke up RAVENOUS, with loud rumblings and pangs. Wow, it had been a long time since I was ACTUALLY "hungry." I had forgotten how much damage that eating carbs does to that little signal. I went from being satisfied and rarely hungry to STARVING. Now it's been a daily struggle to do without. Carbs were put here on earth to make us come back for more, and more and more! This is especially true when it comes to sugar.

So..for the month of December, I actually gained 2 1/2 pounds. So, I'm trying not to beat myself up too much. I feel that I've let down myself, my family, and you. I was weak. BUT - let's look at the positive. I lost over 50 pounds in a very focused and disciplined year. I understand how my body works. I feel much better physically AND mentally than I did last January. If I didn't tell you, Amber had a hard time getting me to commit. She was very stubborn and relentless. I was not ready to do it, but I just started. I decided to fake it until I could make it. Sometimes, you just have to wade in and get used to the water. Before you know it, you're kicking and swimming with the sharks!

I've been trying to think of what I need to re-motivate me in 2013. I have a lot of good in my life and have a lot of life left to live! I still want this. Have you made your resolutions? I'm doing some soul searching for mine. I'm going to take the rest of this week to come up with a new game plan. I've got some ideas, but I want to develop them a bit more. Things that worked that I will continue? No wheat, monthly weighing, writing about it on this blog (thanks Amber!), and surrounding myself with people that love me and support. And while I want to be honest, I really want to keep this positive and not make this a pity party every month. Oooh... I can throw a good pity party, but I've learned, pity and carbs have a lot in common. They both leave you wanting more, they don't look pretty on your face, and you regret everything you said/ate the next morning! So, onward and upward.

I hope this new year find you all happy and healthy and full of resolve. I am ready, are you?
1 Year, 100 Hundred Pounds is a series written by my sister Misha (read her full story HERE).  I am SO SO SO proud of her for sticking with the Wheat Belly Diet plan for a whole year! She lost 52 lbs total, so not the 100 lbs we had hoped for. But that is 52 lbs lost forever and nothing to sneeze at. I am looking forward to what she has in store for 2013 and how she is going to tackle the next phase of her weight loss! Congrats Misha! 
Love you, Amber