Thursday, December 23, 2010


Brother, am I tired this morning.  Woke up at 2:45 am and could not stop my brain - that was it for the night.  I am happy to report that I had no leg cramps at all, despite a very low carb day, but not having them was sort of pointless if I was awake anyway - apart from the pain, that is.

146.2 today, and still a bit stiff from the workout Tuesday evening.  Lee says he's down a pound from yesterday, which was up a pound from two days ago or something.  He seems to be oscillating around the 201 pound mark with no relief.  I did check his eating from Tuesday and he had over 70 grams of carbs; reported that to him and I think his food yesterday was nearly all fat or protein - eggs and bacon for breakfast (with milk), naked burger with toppings and caesar salad for lunch, BBQ - ribs and sausage and cole slaw for dinner.  With sweet tea, unfortunately, but it still should fall far shorter of the 70 gram mark.  We are planning dinner at a McDonald's on the road tonight - naked burgers for both of us.  I am determined that he'll see "19" at the beginning of his weight - and soon.

Well, diesel fuel number 1 (I think it is - heavy cream) is not helping this morning - and neither is English Breakfast tea.  This is one of the days I wish I had a sugar-free Red Bull handy - no, they're not paleo, but they do work.  I had a regular one once and never want to repeat that - the sugar crash hit so fast I almost collapsed - but the sugar-free ones are helpful on days like this.

All that said, even operating on low sleep right now, I feel a lot better than I would have in the same state while eating the SAD.  I know I can function.  I would just rather not, right now.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wednesday of the world's longest week

And it's not - exactly - because Christmas is coming; it's a 4-day week leading up to time off (which happens to be Christmas).  Anyway, here we are at Wednesday.  Yesterday's eating (for me) went like this:
Breakfast - 2 turkey bacon and about 1.5 eggs scrambled with 1/4 pound of ground beef (leftovers from the beef, eggs, spinach dish).  Tea with heavy cream to start
During the day - about 1/3 cup of walnut pieces
Dinner - ground sirloin patty with cheddar and bacon, and a tiny bit of avocado (it was really hard, so not worth eating).  2 squares of stilton cheese, about 5 dark chocolate almonds, and a piece of paleo christmas candy (coconut shreds covered with 60% cacao chocolate).

Lee had about the same thing, without the walnuts and with Olive Garden soup and salad for lunch - he picked Pasta E Fagiole, which has to be carb-city.  Also at least 2 glasses of 2% milk.

The reason I'm recording this so scrupulously is that he is still not losing weight at all, and I am feeling compelled to figure out why.  So I'm going to load him into LoseIt for a while to see what his ratios are.  I've also suggested that he should try an IF day or two, and that he might want to get a blood glucose meter and test himself after meals to figure out what's kicking his blood sugar up - because something must be, somewhere.  He was having leg cramps overnight, which seems like he's running low-carb in general, but I'm wondering about gluconeogenesis due to not enough fat calories or something.  Gah!

We did the gym again last night - just weights for me; he walked a mile and then hit a few weight machines.  I don't think the walking will have the adverse effects on his appetite, since it's not strenuous or highly aerobic.  For me, the second session prompted body aches right away - I was pretty sore overnight and don't feel too wonderful today.  But a pound of water went away, so I'm back at 146.4.

The coconut water after workouts seems to be keeping cramps at bay - I had some popping at bedtime, but nothing worse.  And I'm getting used to the taste, sort of.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


I think maybe Chinese food is problematic.  We went out for some last night - I had some (not a huge amount) Cashew Chicken without rice.  Chicken wasn't breaded, sauce was thin, so it shouldn't have added weight.  I am assuming it was the salt - that and the fact that, for some reason, workouts take 2 days to register with muscle stiffness on me.  Anyway, I'm up to 147.4 this morning.

We're going back to the gym tonight, before dinner, I think.  I don't know if that will improve things, or make them worse.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday before Christmas

Pretty good weekend, from an eating standpoint.  We ate at home a lot - stew on Friday, cabbage rolls from Everyday Paleo for dinner Saturday, roast beef and potatoes and rice-flour gravy last night.  Breakfast yesterday at Cracker Barrel, which has a gargantuan low-carb breakfast - 3 eggs, 2 bacon, 2 sausage, and some sliced tomatoes.  Breakfast Saturday was a second pass at the ground beef, eggs, and spinach thing - more spinach and eggs to less beef this time, and still pretty good! And we ate out for Saturday lunch - I had a Wendy's double with cheese, sans bun, and Lee had chili; we split a baked potato (with the crap they provide in lieu of butter - ugh).

Lee came really close to being below 200 on Saturday morning, but saw it go back up on Sunday, just out of caprice, as far as I can figure.  He's stiff and sore right now from the cold, and that's probably part of it.  We also went to the gym yesterday morning, and are both stiff and sore and swollen from that.  I did a variety of machines - all weightlifting; he walked a bit and then did a bit of lifting. 

Made some kinda fun, near-paleo candy this weekend - I had a partial bar of 60% cacao chocolate and some leftover coconut shreds, and melted the former and stirred in the latter.  It's pretty darn tasty - worth repeating, although next time, I'll do the 85% stuff.  It tastes rather like a Mounds bar, only not as sweet and not nearly as sticky.

147.0 this morning; I saw 145.something over the weekend and having eaten so clean, I tend to think that this is my muscles protesting the weight work yesterday.  I took a couple of salmon oil this morning and will take some Advil if the pain increases at all; between them, the excess fluid should go away, I think.

We were laughing yesterday morning at the prospect of January at the gym, as all the folks who gained weight over the holidays make their resolutions and start to keep them.  Because, so far, I think both of us have lost a tiny amount of weight over the holidays - not much, and some days, it's hard to see.  But I didn't fit into a size 8 before Thanksgiving, and now I do (I'm wearing one of the skirts I made earlier in the fall and it's too big), and I think Lee's nearing a breakthrough - his "skinny jeans" were falling down while we were out shopping yesterday.

Friday, December 17, 2010


I have no idea why, but I have been stomach-growlingly hungry all day, to the point at which I succumbed to a cookie and some M&Ms that were left over from yesterday's party.  As should be obvious to a Paleo/Low-Carb eater, neither was the least helpful. 

It is now roughly 20 to 3:00 pm.  A bit late to be realizing I should have had some lunch today.

Christmas Food

Over the past 3 days, we've received gifts from various members of our family who have developed a tradition of sending food.  I think that we have discussed our way of eating with most of them - or at least, they've seen it in action, back in the spring.  I suppose it's possible that they're just like my mother, who keeps asking when I'm going to stop "dieting", and figure that how we eat is in support of a weight-loss goal or something, and will go back to "normal" some day.  Because here are the highlights of what they have sent us for Christmas this year:
  • Frozen gourmet lasagna
  • Bagels - it looked to be several dozen of them
  • Some sort of frozen cake
  • Flavored popcorn

Amongst all of this largess (lard-ess, more like), we did get some steaks and some coffee, so it wasn't all problematic.  And the popcorn's original sale benefited the Boy Scouts, and I'm all for that.  But now we have all this stuff in the house that we don't eat, and I need to come up with suitably enthusiastic thank-you notes for it, as well.

The popcorn came to work with me this morning - I work in IT, and have never seen an IT organization pass up free food, so I think it will be appreciated.  Lee is thinking of doing something similar with the bagels at his office sometime soon.  The lasagna and the cake?  I don't know.  Guess we'll let them stew a while.

My weight's holding steady in the mid 140s - 146.6 this morning.  Lee's still not losing; I suggested he try the keto-stix a couple of times to see if he's ever going into ketosis, and we could work from there.  And he wants to go to the gym more, which I think means I have to start getting us to the gym more (a role I would willingly give up, but it's mine and has been for a long time).  Maybe one or the other of those will help.  If we do get to the gym more, I'm going to start working on a six-pack - I think I'm about where I could do it and have it be visible.

Fortunately, I think we have received all of our food-oriented gifts.  Good thing - I'm not sure we haven't exhausted our options for getting it out of the house.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A nightmare

Just came from the holiday party at work.  Here was the menu:
  • Pizza (various sorts)
  • Salad with a choice of dressings (including blue cheese)
  • Cake
  • Cookies
  • Candy
  • Apple Juice
  • Cranberry Juice Cocktail
  • Coke
  • Sprite
I did the best I could navigating the minefield; a reasonable helping of salad with dressing (it had "vegetable" and soybean oil both, but probably was nicely full of fat), one slice of pepperoni and black olive pizza, from which I peeled and ate the toppings and cheese, a small handful (maybe 10, total) of plain M&Ms, one King Leo peppermint ball (1" diameter, I think) and one cookie.  I did not drink.

I was sitting there, toying with my dessert, when one of the other women at the table started to talk about problems with her insulin levels, and how she couldn't possibly miss a meal without feeling faint and seeing spots and didn't see how anyone could.  I couldn't help myself; I turned to her and said, "oh, I do that routinely - I only ate dinner on Monday."  And then I shut up.  I try not to make a big deal of the way I eat, and I was very matter-of-fact about peeling my pizza and skipping the crust.  And if I can find a natural way to slip in a remark about "heart-healthy saturated fat", I will, mostly to see if anyone actually is listening.  But I won't proselytize.  Maybe I should, but I can't - unless someone asks and really seems to want to know.  And after my aunt's and sister-in-law's reactions ("oh, yes, that's exactly what we're already doing", as they proceed either to consume or serve flour- and sugar-laden food), I'm even a bit chary of sharing with people who act interested.

Anyway, one holiday minefield successfully negotiated.  Don't know how many more to go...


I succumbed to the lure of peanuts yesterday.  I think it has to do with having a cube right next to the floor's one microwave, so lunchtime comes, and I get to smell everyone's lunch.  On the days they bring microwaveable frozen lasagna, I have no problem not eating (microwaving it smells like, well, vomit).  Other days, they cook something beefy, and I get hungry.  Yesterday was one of those days. 

I came prepared today - finally remembered to bring some walnuts with me.

146.4 today.  We ate Mexican last night, but I had carne asada with guacamole (and chips and some of the rice, and two unfried corn tortillas - I was hungry), so, in theory, it wasn't as bad as my usual cheese enchiladas.  Also had my one cookie - and kept it to one this time.  And some walnuts and some cheese.  As I was getting ready for bed, I felt the leg cramps starting, and when the first one fired off, I went and drank some coconut water.  It wasn't as instantaneous a fix this time - I felt the fasciculation or whatever it is for a while after, but the cramps did not return.  So it seems to work.  It also doesn't taste as nice as I thought it did the first time, but since it's medicinal, I'll slug it down - it tastes much better than, say, Ny-Quil.

Holiday party at work today, featuring pizza.  I will eat the top and skip the bread.  I wonder if it would be possible to make a pizza top by melting cheese with tomatoes and pepperoni and spices in a casserole dish or something.  Seems like it would be worth a try, anyway.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


So I ate 3 cookies after dinner yesterday - something with white frosting on it, something with chocolate frosting on it, and something with sugar on it - spaced throughout the evening.  Dinner was brats and mustard and a salad with ham in it and blue cheese dressing (Marie's - has soybean oil in it as the first ingredient, but everything else looks okay).  By bedtime, my digestive system felt and sounded like it should have been featured on Storm Chasers or something, and I slept miserably as a result - never deeply.  Can I really blame the cookies?  I don't know.  But I'm definitely disinclined to go on another 3-cookie "binge" any time soon.

Pizza party at work tomorrow.  Not sure how I am going to deal with it, especially in light of last night's reaction to (I guess) flour.  I have a fork at my desk, guess I could bring it and use the crust as my "plate" in order to eat the cheese and meat off of it.

146.6 this morning; some of the water weight is gone but I had pretty achy joints this morning - more wheat reaction or maybe from sleeping badly - in any event, I think there's more water there.

The thought of 3 cookies as a binge makes me laugh - but for me, these days, I guess it really is.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Fasted fairly comfortably yesterday, then went out and ate smoked turkey and salad with blue cheese dressing; followed up with an ounce or so of Gruyere and one cookie with frosting.  And that was enough for the day.  Although I must admit to being on the verge of cranky just before dinner.

All that effort notwithstanding, I'm still at 148 even.  Probably see some change tomorrow - that does seem to be how it works.  And I am still in some sort of carb-processing, water-retaining state, because I have no hint of what some internet site called "fasciculation" - the bubbling sensation in my calves that signals a potassium loss. 

Speaking of calf cramps (sort of), I have an experiment to try the next time they hit.  I had horrid ones on Friday night, combined with more traditional foot cramps that had my toes aimed every which way.  I got up and downed 4 potassium tablets, a magnesium, and then had an idea to take a swig of some rather old coconut water that I'd had in the fridge for a while.  After swallowing, all the cramps subsided almost immediately, and did not come back in any form for the rest of the night, which I thought was odd - pill-form potassium actually doesn't seem to do anything once the cramping starts.  So I'm wondering about the coconut water, and got another, reclosable, container of it, which I plan to guzzle from when next I have any issues.  Logically, it does seem like it might be quicker-acting than a pill that needs time to dissolve, and it contains other minerals that might also help. 

I meant to get some walnuts to bring to work today but forgot.  I figure that they have to be somewhat better than peanuts from the machine - nuts over legumes, for starters, and of the nuts, walnuts have (I think) the best Omega 3:6 ratio (still not wonderful, but better than most). 

The "one cookie a day" rule I imposed on myself seems to be working.  Thinking back, we were always limited in our junk-food intake as kids; once I was an adult and the food rules seemed to change, I dropped those restraints, and the result was 45 pounds (over 20 years - which I think was roughly the number Gary Taubes' first blog entry was dealing with - "just 20 calories per day".  Yeah, right).  And for what it's worth, I am really savoring those single cookies, as prescribed in French Women Don't Get Fat.  They're much better that way, I think.

Brats and (probably) sauerkraut for dinner tonight - good stuff!

Monday, December 13, 2010

A bit of analysis

I can't help it; I am still trying to help Lee even if he wants to fight me.  So I took our food intake from yesterday, to the extent that I know it, and logged it in a calorie counter that can do macronutrient levels.  Granted, yesterday's eating sucked, so I also found the day's eating that I logged last week to see if I were inadvertently starving myself into the size 8.  I think that's more representative of my normal eating patterns these days.  Here's what I see:

Lee yesterday:
  • Calories: 2051
  • Fat: 109.5g, 51% of calories
  • Carbohydrates: 132.86g, 27.5% of calories
  • Protein: 103.9g, 21.5% of calories
Me yesterday:
  • Calories: 1876
  • Fat: 113.2g, 54.8% of calories
  • Carbohydrates: 126.1g, 27.1% of calories
  • Protein: 83.7g, 18% of calories
Me last week:
  • Calories: 1829
  • Fat: 137.5g, 68% of calories
  • Carbohydrates: 32.9g, 7% of calories
  • Protein: 111.9g, 25% of calories
The big difference yesterday in what Lee and I ate was that he had grits and eggs with breakfast, and a glass of milk, where I had 6 slices of turkey bacon and a dollop of cream in my tea.  Other than that, we pretty much ate the same things, as far as I could tell.  The big differences between what I ate yesterday and what I normally would eat are manifold:
  • Normally, breakfast is 2 eggs and 2 slices of turkey bacon, with the dollop of cream
  • Normally, I don't eat lunch
  • Normally, dinner is pretty protein- and fat-centric, without a lot of starchy vegetables, and I eat a lot of cheese or nuts and a bit of very dark chocolate
  • Yesterday, I had half a piece of commercially prepared cheesecake, albeit with a crust composed of flourless chocolate cake.  Still, it was a huge bolus of carbs. 
  • Yesterday, I had a hefty portion of chips and queso.
  • Yesterday, I had a hard cider with dinner
Lee's normal breakfast is very like mine, although he usually adds a glass of milk (currently 2% which is down from whole milk last month, and he wants to switch to skim).  He eats lunch, and I don't have a lot of insight into it, although I hear about "half a bun" a couple of times a week, so I would say that he's getting carbs there that could be avoided.  He also frequently takes a banana and a low-fat, artificially sweetened yogurt (ugh!) to work with him, presumably as a snack.  Our dinners are generally similar and he does try to keep the obvious carbs down, but, for example, last week we were at a "healthy" soup and salad (and pasta and bread) place and he opted for beets in his salad and had a cream (roux? probably) soup and a corn muffin.

Is it all enough to add up to a permanent stall?  I don't honestly know.  I wish I could convince him to log a week's worth of eating, so that I could pull it apart and see if I could find the issues.  Maybe I'll ask him to do that the next time he complains about not losing any more weight.  But I'm not holding my breath that he'll do it.

On an unrelated subject, my system seems to be reacting well to the fast - it's nearly 1 pm and I'm just now getting hungry (probably the result of contemplating yesterday's meals), and the mildly "off" feeling I woke with seems to be fading.

Garbage in, ...

Pounds on.  Ate horridly all weekend, and as a result, I'm up to 148 this morning, and not surprised in the least - also unsurprised to be feeling swollen and achy in most of my joints.  Friday's Mexican food led to Saturday's purchase of Christmas cookies and dinner with some sort of fried potato cake, leading to Sunday's cheesecake (no flour, we think, but plenty of sugar) and stew (flour roux, almost certainly), and chips and queso.  Not clean, not remotely Paleo.  So - no surprise here, I think - I'm fasting this morning.

We did the cookies right.  I went to a proper German bakery in Old Town, and bought an assortment of small butter/sugar cookies with sprinkles or frosting on them.  Once home, I vacuum-packed half of them and stuffed them in the freezer, and made a rule for myself limiting the intake to no more than 2 a day.  And I have abided by those rules.  The cookies I have had so far (only 3, actually) are extremely tasty and not so sweet as the one I had at work a week or so ago.  I think, without all the other junk, they would have been minimal in impact.

Lee is starting to push back on Paleo eating, arguing that the research I've done cannot possibly be the whole picture (not that I'm claiming it is) and telling me that he's going back to skim milk.  Fine.  I give up with him.  He won't read anything I send him for himself, claiming he believes what I've been saying - until he doesn't.  If he wants to eat garbage and argue with me about the knowledge I've gained, I will simply stop sharing; he's on his own.  I'll continue to eat the way I've learned to, the way that has improved my lipids dramatically, the way that has lost me around 45 pounds (depending on which day you ask), the way that will help me avoid Type II Diabetes and heart disease and Alzheimer's and auto-immune disorders and other diseases of civilization, and he can take his stupid statin drugs and blood pressure meds and sink slowly into metabolic syndrome.  Because if he doesn't want to understand the principles himself, and wants me to do his homework for him and tell him what to do, it ill-serves him to turn around and tell me that the homework I did for him was wrong.  He thinks that he will be able to lose weight by cutting calories and fat and by exercising, despite the fact that he has already lost something like 20 pounds by ignoring calories, not exercising, and eating fat.

Crazy-making, definitely.  But he's over 60, and is resisting the new tricks.  And his weight loss has stalled (I know why, too, but I will not be able to convince him to stop eating grits and yogurt and milk and bananas even for a week or two to see if it starts moving again - I know this because I've suggested it before and got nowhere). Not sure that there's much I can ultimately do there.

Friday, December 10, 2010

As I suspected

... 145.2 this morning.  Went to one of those salad-bar-and-"healthy"-food places last night for dinner and nearly couldn't eat, because the "healthy" food consisted of pasta, breads and muffins, soups with beans or a cream base (i.e., a flour-based roux), and baked potatoes with topping.  I had a lot of salad, and a bowl of "cassoulet" (so called, and it followed the basic pattern for the dish, but without any of the good French fats that would be there in the real thing), and some tapioca pudding (don't the Kitavans eat tapioca?  I'm sure that must be paleo, right?).  The beans in the cassoulet are making their presence known this morning, but not in any acute way. 

Made some paleo "cookies" last night with almond meal, walnuts, and pumpkin as the main ingredients.  They were okay, but could have used some salt, and probably would have benefitted from raisins (I guess we could "gather" raisins, right?).  Anyway, a first foray into things we might use to expand our basic diet (not counting the cheesecake), and worth continued exploration.

I also confirmed my size 8 status yesterday by trying a skirt on.  Still mind-boggling.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


My husband has been complaining that my recently purchased, size 12 chinos from LL Bean are too big, which annoyed me rather a lot, since I just got them.  Given that I did body fat measurements yesterday, I thought I would check to see if he was right.  My waist is currently about 28-3/4" and my hips 38-3/4".  LL Bean's size charts go like this:
  • Size 10:
    • Waist: 29-1/2"
    • Hips: 39-1/2"
Okay, I fit into the size 10s and am starting to be glad I ONLY ordered 2 pair in size 12 to replace the 4 pairs of size 16 I had been wearing (boy, I bet those would look pretty funny on, about now).

But here's where it got really surreal.  I kept reading (or my field of vision was wider than it needed to be).
  • Size 8:
    • Waist: 28-1/2"
    • Hips: 38-1/2"
I am closer in size to an 8 than a 10.  I cannot recall the last time I wore a size 8.  It may have been junior high.

So here I sit, a 49 year old woman with a dilemma.  Well, several, actually. 
  • Do I buy the size 8s or the size 10s?
  • Do I replace my current swimwear with a bikini? (Bear in mind that no matter how thin I am, gravity is a force to be reckoned with.)
  • Dare I try on the already-altered-once little black dress I bought in June that started life as a size 14?  Or do I just go buy something new?  For that matter, I have a handful of other undiscarded dresses in my closet - try them on, or just give them the heave-ho now?
  • Do I try to gain a little weight and stay stable somewhere that apparently isn't my genetic "normal weight"?  That sounds almost as hard as weight-loss on the low-fat plan.  Or do I go with nature here, keep eating the way I eat, and let the pounds and measurements settle where they will?  Even though that looks to be a rather expensive proposition (another new wardrobe).
Nobody in their right mind would have any sympathy for me right now, and I do not blame them.  Tee-hee-hee!

Carbing up: the day after

My stomach doesn't love me today, and I feel a vague malaise.  Stupid flour and sugar... 


I anticipate that my weight will be up tomorrow, after what, for me these days, amounts to a carb binge, yesterday.  In addition to the cookie (I did end up eating the whole thing), I had another bag of trail mix (again, on purpose to increase carbs), a half-baked potato (half of a potato, baked, but not for long enough, at Country Buffet), and a couple of pieces of fudge.  I'm sure that the cookie was 25 grams of carbs, and the trail mix was 27 grams; so I was pushing 60 grams before the potato entered the picture.  Still, the sum total was lower than the SAD, and I don't plan to do that sort of thing daily.  I do need to come up with a sensible way to increase carbs to maybe the 60s on a daily basis, without eating wheat or masses of sugar.

So, 144.8 this morning (like I have said in the past, my weight increases seem a bit time-delayed).  My BMI is 20.2, and my body fat% is 23.  I really like it.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A cookie

Given my issues with cramping overnight and the fact that I seem not to have completely stopped weight loss, I made a decision to eat a cookie from a box left for the people at work this afternoon.  And, after 1 bite, I'm not sure I can go on - it is teeth-curlingly sweet.  To the exclusion of all other flavors.  Wow - how did I ever eat stuff like this routinely?

Calorie/nutrient counts for yesterday

I think I captured everything in LoseIt, and it's showing me with a total of 1829 calories for the day, 68% fat, 7% carbs (33 grams of which 23 were sugar), and 25% protein.  Spot on what I should be doing, and definitely not a "weight-loss" calorie count.  Okay, that's good to see.

However, I meant to mention this before and forgot, but 33 grams of carbs apparently isn't enough to keep the cramps at bay.  I had nasty ones in the outside of my right leg last night - behind the anklebone on the outside at the same time as a shin cramp - another of those situations where stretching it out is simply not an option.  Maybe we'll have some beef stew for dinner tonight from my home-alone cooking binge - with potato starch to thicken it.

Really? Really???

Got on the scale this morning and had to do a go-back.  I am at 144.4 (or possibly .6; does it really matter?) this morning.  I don't think that was a goal, really - I'm happy at weighing under 150.  Anyway, I also did my body fat measurements, and am at 23% even this morning, and within about 3/4" in hip and waist measurements of being able to make pants using a pattern I found in my stash from the 90's (I'd guess) that has tapered legs and a waist-high waistband.  I've been wanting to make those pants again - I like the ones I did make recently, but have never been a fan of truly straight legs unless they're skinny, and these are straight and a sort of medium width, so that they flap about the ankles in a way I don't care for - it doesn't look graceful.  Anyway, my lean body mass is at 111.2 pounds at the moment, which indicates to me that I'm still losing fat - actually, looking at my lower abdomen tells me that - it continues to melt slowly away.

I finally got a chance to watch the movie, "Fat Head", which I'd been reading about in the low-carb/paleo blogs for a while now.  It's currently available on Hulu (at  I loved it - laughed out loud (while sitting alone in my kitchen in front of my laptop) multiple times, and the nutrition science is spot-on and very clearly explained.  I sent the link to both Elizabeth and to my sister; hope they opt to take a look.  Lee even watched a bit of it over my shoulder, although he wasn't willing to stand there for 1-3/4 hours' worth, understandably.

Anyway, back to this weight-loss thing.  I do keep an eye on the mirror in case I start looking anorexic, and that doesn't appear to be happening.  Here's what I ate yesterday:
Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs and 2 strips turkey bacon; 1 cup of tea with heavy cream in it
Lunch - nothing
Dinner: 1/3 pound Angus burger patty with cheddar cheese and green chile (seriously wonderful!), 1/2 cup cottage cheese, and a pickle spear
Miscellaneous snacks: 3 oz cheese (Gruyere and/or Kerrygold sharp cheddar), 1 cup of strawberries with 1/3ish cup heavy cream, 1 square of Lindt 82% cacao chocolate.  Possibly a cup of tea with heavy cream in it.

I wasn't hungry, except briefly around 2:30 (so useless for lunch-eating!).  I mean to put that log into LoseIt just to see what the calorie count is.  In the meantime, I guess this new loss a)signals I haven't hit my genetically appropriate weight yet, and b) means a few Christmas cookies won't do me much harm (unless the gluten or other wheat toxins get to me).

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Exciting news!  I posted the link to Gary Taubes' new blog on Facebook yesterday, and actually got my sister to read it.  It's just possible she'll buy and read his new book when it comes out, and if what he says makes sense to her (it certainly did to me), perhaps she'll change how she eats and improve her health.  I tried to convince her to read GCBC (I would even have lent it to her), but perhaps my use of the phrase, "800-page magnum opus" put her off.  I won't push the issue - in the wake of the salt water thing, I just can't - but I will keep my fingers crossed.

Ate nothing between breakfast and getting home after work last night; while peanuts are available in the machine, the fact remains that they're Omega-6 heavy and therefore pro-inflammatory (somehow, that doesn't seem quite the right antonym to anti-inflammatory).  And I have something impinging some of the nerves in my hands right now - I slept funny over Friday night, I think - so I need to be settling inflammation down, not adding to it.  Doubled up on salmon oil this morning as well.

Poor Elizabeth!  She got cramps from potassium imbalance yesterday in her cheek and stomach and could not get them to go away.  I advised pigging out on avocados for a while and watching the salt. Hope that will help, as she is starting finals this week and could do without the distraction.

We got some boffo good cheese at Costco last weekend - a lovely aged Gruyere.  I opened it to cut up into snack-sized pieces last night and had dogs at my feet immediately.  They are crazy fond of cheese, especially Swiss-type cheeses, so the smell must have called to them.  But they didn't get any.  I ate the edges, probably even with wax (not entirely sure about the wax - but the edges were somewhat shiny).  Costco also had a French butter with sea salt, so I got some of that.  I am assuming that the cows were pastured, but without evidence (I haven't opened it up to see the color yet).  Given that, without bread, we don't have a vehicle for butter, I figure I can splurge on it when I do buy.  And it's healthy!  That's always a good reason.

No shift in weight overnight.  Seems like I really am settling in the high mid 140s, and that seems to be about right.  I certainly like the way it looks in clothes - and if I can just remember to do a few crunches (to exhaustion) and or lift occasionally, I could potentially make my next swimsuit a bikini again.  At 50, and without grossing out people in my vicinity.  Yee hah!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Cold Monday

It's about 27 outside; not at all nice.  I had several conversations about the cold weather over the weekend, and about people being cold.  I know low thyroid will make people cold, but it seems like being under-nourished would have the same effect - what I think I remember hearing as a child: "no fuel for the furnace".  In such conversations, I find the words, "eat more fat" coming to my lips more and more often.  In groups of people who don't eat the way we do, that can prompt some rather odd looks.  Oh, well.  I live for the day when I hear a commercial that includes the phrase, "heart-healthy saturated fat" in it (we can all dream).

Ate pretty well over the weekend.  We saw a show on the Food Network Friday - one of those "The Best Thing I Ever Ate" ones - that included a pure Paleo recipe (not on purpose, I imagine, but it was).  Saute some chopped onion in butter to wilt it a bit, add ground beef and fry that up.  Top with wilted spinach (I sauteed it in ghee), and a couple of beaten eggs, and cook until the eggs are done.  Top with grated parmesan cheese.  We tried it for breakfast yesterday, and while I need to tweak the proportions - no recipe was given, so we just eyeballed it - it was really good.  And I'm not a big spinach fan.

I also made my own eggnog.  A survey of the commercial brands all included HFCS, so I did a bit of research and found a recipe that involved a bit of cooking (in case the eggs had any salmonella about them).  It is definitely the same thickness as commercial, but the flavor is a bit different and I haven't quite figured out why.  But I very much like the fact that it isn't nearly as sweet - a recipe that served 6-8 had just over 1/3 cup of sugar in it.  So a good start - and I may try adding a hint of vanilla; I think that might be the missing flavor (either that or bourbon, since I made it non-alcoholic).

146.2 this morning.  I don't think that's the lowest I've ever been, but it's down from the 147.0 I was all weekend.  I also seem to be losing inches around my waist - the lower abdominal subcutaneous fat I still have seems to be shrinking.  Good news and bad - my clothing is getting a bit loose again.  The good news is that maybe I can produce a six-pack - at nearly 50 years old.  That would actually be way cool.

Lee says he's losing weight again.  I'm not sure what triggered it, but good to hear.

And Gary Taubes is blogging!  I've been hoping that would happen one day - I read a lot of nutrition blogs these days and loved his book, so the combination should be wonderful.

Friday, December 3, 2010


Went and ate Mexican last night - I was quite peckish when I got home from work - and that was after having a candy-machine package of trail mix (peanuts, the odd cashew, raisins, and M&Ms) mid-afternoon.  The trail mix was a conscious decision; with the holidays upon us, I see a lot of messages on TV and other places about eating sweet things, and I thought that would deal with a mild craving without damaging things too much.  It was very good, and it did the trick.

I also considered purchasing some eggnog while shopping last night - until I read the labels.  It ought to be simple, right?  Eggs, heavy cream, nutmeg, sugar.  I'm pretty sure that's the recipe.  But everything I picked up contained HFCS and several ingredients with too many syllables.  So for now, I passed.  Maybe I'll make a small batch - after all, at home, we have eggs, heavy cream, nutmeg, and sugar.  I bet homemade will taste more like what I remember as a kid, too; the stuff these days is too sweet and lacks body (sounds like a wine tasting response - sorry, but I don't know how else to describe it).

I sent Lee more details of weight-loss practices he might try - found the weight loss page on PaNu and copied and linked it.  I hope he reads it and tries some of the suggestions, because he still reaches for the low-fat fake yogurt and the bananas and the only one slice of bread because it stuck to the sandwich filling, and the fake sugar in his coffee.  He still has a lot of visceral fat, and that's the stuff that really has the health impact, so I am hoping he'll start seeing some success again.  He had a physical on Wednesday and I'm interested in his blood chemistry results (is it sad that I can reel off a list of things he should ask about?) - especially the blood glucose in his case, since he's on statins and I imagine his lipids will look statin-like.  Supposedly they also tested C-reactive protein, which is an inflammation measurement, and that will also be an interesting number, since he has significantly reduced inflammatory stuff like wheat, even if he hasn't been totally successful at eliminating it.

Oh, and I was at 147 this morning - I think it's healthy that I'm starting to obsess less about my weight.  I also like that I have the key to getting through the holidays without damaging my health this year!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Finally got a night's sleep last night, with the assistance of Advil (I think) PM.  So I'm woolly this morning - feels like I'm surrounded by a muffling curtain of semi-transparent heavy plastic or something.  At least my stomach seems to have settled down, sort of.  I was ravenous this morning and still feel a bit hungry and weak.  The doctor told Lee yesterday that there are salmonella outbreaks active in New Mexico right now; probably that's what we ran into.  The last time I ate something with salmonella poisoning, it took a couple of weeks before I felt human again.

146.8 this morning, although the scale considered options between that number and 149 something, I think, before settling.  Whatever.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


I no longer think we had food poisoning over the weekend, but that we ran into a virus of some sort, since I think both of us had some degree of fever with it.  That, and the fact that I thought I was over it on Monday and yesterday only to have it resurface this morning.  Sort of.  Anyway, I'm fasting again because I cannot abide the thought of eating right now.

148.4 this morning after drinking rather a lot of tea, and with my stomach all bloated and nasty.  I'm functional, but not enjoying it.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


If I am doing the math correctly, I completed a fast of just over 30 hours yesterday afternoon, when I finally got a few hunger pangs and felt it was safe to eat.  It was a complete breeze (possibly aided by illness, I admit, but still easy).  Funnily enough, one of my colleagues at work was fasting prior to surgery yesterday, sucking down Gatorade and apparently struggling hard with starvation.  I didn't tell him - it didn't seem fair - and I tend to think people would look at me as some sort of freak for doing IF anyway.

The fast was of no help with weight loss - not that I am trying to lose any more weight - I was at 148.0 this morning.  No idea why, and I don't really care much.  If I spend the rest of my life at 150 or slightly below, I will be a healthy and happy camper.  And that's all I really care about.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Back to the Grind - Monday

Thanksgiving was lovely - sunny, low-mid 60s, relaxing.  We ate well.  And on the trip back, got a case of some sort of food poisoning.  Nasty stomach ache all day yesterday and lingering into this morning, although a dose of liquid Pepto-Bismol seems to be helping.  The upshot?  I've been fasting, with the exception of 2 chocolate-covered peanuts, a can of diet Red Bull, and some Rolaids, since breakfast yesterday (I ate some scrambled eggs in order to take some Advil).  I'm not hungry now, and food is still not very appetizing, so I guess I'll fast until dinner tonight.

So, let's see.  We had several breakfasts of scrambled eggs and meat (most of them fell into that category, actually), I don't think I ate lunch at all, Thanksgiving dinner was as described in the previous entry (fresh turkey cooked unstuffed with butter poured under the breast skin came out perfect), and I had a small popcorn when we went to see the Harry Potter movie (it is amazing to me how that seems like plenty now - I used to finish a large popcorn routinely, although I don't believe I ever did a refill).  Weight this morning was 147.4, so I didn't gain a thing over the holiday weekend, even with the pie and potatoes and stuffing.

Lee is now asking me if I'm done losing weight.  I'm not sure what he's asking - hopefully it's just a question of wardrobe replacement being done, rather than "are you going to go back to eating pasta and cookies now?", because the answer to the latter is "Hell, no!"

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

T (for Thanksgiving) minus two days

My one meal yesterday consisted of pot roast, potatoes and carrots, salad, and a bit of gravy.  Followed by the last of the low-carb, no-gluten cheesecake.  And some bits of cheese and chocolate.  Weird how that last sentence appears in a lot of my eating-log entries.  I do eat low-carb, but not very clean from a paleo standpoint, I think.  I should be snacking on berries or something - or not snacking at all (better plan - but it's an old habit!)

147.8 this morning - still working off the weekend's excesses.  I had a bunch of turkey sausage links for breakfast, after looking into their fat-protein-carb ratios and realizing that they're pretty similar to eggs.  I figure they'll hold me until I can grab something at the airport this afternoon.

Thanksgiving plans include turkey (of course), corn-bread stuffing, mashed potatoes with rice-flour-roux gravy, and no-holds-barred pumpkin pie (I cannot bring myself to screw with the Cooks Illustrated fool-proof pie crust, so we're biting the bullet on that one).  Probably some other vegetable or a salad in there somewhere.  So I'll probably come out of it up a pound or two, and have to knuckle down to make them go away afterward.  The nice thing is that I know now how to make them go away afterward.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday before Thanksgiving

Nutritionally, kind of an ugh weekend.  And, apparently, nearly a lost one - perhaps that's related.  In any event, I can't remember whether it was Friday or Saturday that I got the munchies for carbs, sort of, and ended up with Grandma Smith's chile (made it with way too much onion!) for dinner, followed by a bag of microwave popcorn covered with ersatz butter-flavored stuff.  I think that was Saturday, which means that on Friday I had Mexican for dinner - cheese enchiladas smothered in green chile.  Phew - I hate it when I can't remember things.

Yesterday was better - I woke up with the taste of onions in my mouth (definitely had the chile on Saturday) and skipped breakfast because I couldn't think of anything that would make that taste go away.  Had 3 hotdogs for lunch, and various bits of cheese or nuts as snacks.  Fed Mom and Dad for dinner, which was flank steak with a red wine/stock reduction sauce, butternut squash with blue cheese and pecans, a salad, and some experimental gluten free amaretto cheese cake for dessert.  The experiment was a success - ground almonds, sugar (only a little) and butter make a perfectly acceptable cheesecake crust, and the cheesecake recipe (which I reduced the sugar component of, and had some cornstarch in it) was really good.  I have a leftover piece that will be part of my dinner tonight, probably along with leftover flank steak and maybe some leftover turkey.

I am at 148.0 this morning - no surprise after some of that eating, and also no surprise given cyclical events.  I'm fasting today because I woke up with a stomach that basically told me not to eat - and I've learned to listen.

One other thing - apparently my rather snotty excursus on the salt water about a week ago has caused at least my parents to re-think it; it sounds like they probably won't be re-ordering it, I'm glad to hear.

Friday, November 19, 2010


Broke yesterday's fast with meat from one of those convenience deli roast turkey breast things at the grocery store (good stuff) and gravy made with a roux of butter and sweet white rice flour.  Much more gravy-like than the potato starch option, although the thickening properties again appear to way outpace wheat flour.  Tasted good and the texture was about right - maybe not as silky smooth as a flour-based roux, but perfectly acceptable.  So that's what we'll be using at Thanksgiving.

The fast has not completely settled my stomach, it appears this morning.  Bother.  I'm not sure what I got into, but I figure I'll keep eating pretty clean and it'll go away eventually - and if it doesn't, I'll call the doctor.  I had some more turkey for breakfast - cold with salt and pepper, essentially the middle of a post-Thanksgiving breakfast turkey sandwich.  It was very lean and the skin was roasted to unchewability, so I don't know how long it will last this morning.

Down to 145.8 this morning - not intentionally.  One day I'll track my caloric intake and see if maybe I'm eating way too little or something.  In addition to turkey and gravy yesterday, I had some chocolate almonds and some Kerrygold cheese and some cheese spread on pecans, none of which is low-calorie or low-fat.  On the other hand, all my day's eating did take place between 6 and 9 pm, so the overall quantity had to be somewhat constrained.  I eat when I'm hungry (unless deliberately fasting) and I eat until I'm not hungry - seems like the right thing to do as maintenance.

Thought about buying some strawberries last night, but absolutely none of them had any fragrance, meaning that they'd taste like nothing without added sugar.  So I didn't.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Had quite a dinner last night - a burger topped with melted swiss, bacon (pre-cooked bacon crisps up pretty well on the cold side of a 2-level gas grill), and the remains of the guacamole I bought last week, which stayed surprisingly un-oxidized in just a plastic tub with a lid.  I am not entirely sure I'd do that again; the guac is always spicier than I expect and sort of negates the bacon and swiss - maybe just sliced or mashed avocado would be better with those two.  Nonetheless, it was pretty good.  I also had some leftover mashed potatoes (BOB Evans, not Dave, by the way) - and so did the dogs; the leftovers were bigger than I'd remembered.  But I had the munchies last night, and ended up committing a venial dietary sin: I ate two very stale Girl Scout Samoas.  And they weren't bad.  After that, I didn't want any more, and will probably dispose of the remains in the trash on Monday - they're so stale that they're all stuck together in stacks; two was the smallest stack, or I'd have had only one.

So far, my sin has not caught up with me (and 2 cookies had only 18 grams of carbs, so really, they weren't that bad - but they did have flour).  I was still 146.4 this morning.  I am, however fasting today; my stomach has not taken kindly to something I've eaten since the beginning of the week and I would like to let it rest a bit.

The trash company is collecting non-perishable food through much of the next month, which is a bit of a quandary.  So much of non-perishable food is carb-heavy, and I'd rather not poison the poor.  Tuna comes to mind, and maybe canned beef stew, things like that.  I plan on doing some shopping toward that food drive this weekend and hope to find some alternatives that are healthier than pasta-based stuff-in-boxes.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Well, that was a revelation.  Over the weekend, I'd done the waist and hip measurements for body fat percentage, and it came out at 24.2% - below my "good enough" goal of 25%.  Last night I had a massage (this does link up), and was laying there (what else is there to do in a massage?) trying to work out what 24.2% fat meant my lean body mass was - and I came close, at 111-112 pounds.  This morning, I thought I check to see how much lean mass I'd lost in all this eating, and dragged out a spreadsheet I'd been keeping my measurements in over the summer.  A quick calculation, and now I know.  In June, when I first did the measurements, I had a lean body mass of 111.45 pounds.  Today, I have a lean body mass of 111.27 pounds.  So that means that I've lost, in the past 5 months, something slightly less than 1/5 of a pound of lean body mass.  That's astonishing.

Oh, one other milestone passed this morning, even though I wasn't aiming for it - as of today, I have lost exactly 45 pounds from when I got fed up with my weight after the cruise in April.  I am at 146.4 this morning.  And based on the body fat calculations, every last one of those 45 pounds was fat.  

Every. Last. One.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Had a bit of experimental food for dinner last night - made beef gravy for mashed potatoes (Dave Evans - I think that's the name - refrigerated ones; reasonably recognizable ingredients, no wheat or sugar, and butter listed before the Franken-oils in the list) with beef stock, potato starch, and various flavorings (onion, garlic, S&P).  I had that with a grilled sirloin-tip grassfed steak (which I have to admit I overcooked - 8 minutes per side was a lot too much).  Some observations:
  • Potato starch is significantly better at thickening than the equivalent quantity of flour
  • The resulting gravy (once I thinned it back out some more and turned the heat way down!) was translucent, rather like Chinese-food sauces (cornstarch-thickened). 
  • It tasted really good, however.
Since I would prefer to have the gravy at Thanksgiving look more like gravy than oyster sauce, I'm thinking I want to add some heavy cream to the mix (and finish it with butter before serving, but I might have done that no matter what the ingredients were).  I may still make some trial poultry gravy with chicken stock or broth (depending on what's open in the fridge that day) and a sweet white rice flour/butter roux, for comparison.  Or maybe some poultry potato-starch and cream gravy.  I'm very glad I thought to do the research this week, so that I have time to try things out before serving the result to my family.

146.8 this morning, and cramps threatening but not materializing overnight - over the past months, I have learned that stretching in certain ways while asleep brings that condition to a way-too-abrupt end.

FWIW, I am still rather fascinated by how slender and petite I appear in mirrors these days.  I assume that I'll get used to it eventually; I hope so, anyway, because I'd hate for anyone to catch me admiring the results of nearly 45 pounds' weight loss. 

Another useful note: my sleep is so much better these days.  It's just more useful or effective or something.  I know that I dream way more than I used to, and I can say (without remembering specifics) that my dreams are more coherent and narrative-oriented than they used to be.  And I tend to wake up after about 8 hours' sleep, rested and able to get up and do things (not that I always want to get up at that point).  Even last week, when I was fighting the onset of Standard Time, I did sleep well.  Why that should have anything whatsoever to do with my food choices is beyond me, but there it is.

Monday, November 15, 2010


With a weekend entirely to myself and a not-terribly-taxing list of "to do" items, I actually ate really well.  Burger patty with guacamole and cheese for lunch on Saturday, steak and sweet potato for dinner, snacks on Sunday in lieu of breakfast or lunch (cheese and nuts, mostly), and beef stew with potatoes, carrots, celery, and onion, thickened with potato starch, for dinner.  I also had some coconut water thinned with Perrier (not nearly as good as I'd hoped; it went from tasting like melted caramels to tasting a good bit like dust) on Saturday to see if I could get the cramps to stay away.  And it does seem to have helped.  I'll probably have the other half can tonight in some form.

I'm down to 146.6 today, and I did a body-fat measurement yesterday and it came out at 24.2%.  The pants I made this weekend, based on the identical pattern I'd used a few weeks ago, with the same alterations, feel very roomy, all of a sudden.  I really don't want to keep altering or making new clothes, so I guess I'll add in more potatoes and corn tortillas and see if that slows things down.  Given that I'm not really losing buckets o' weight - 0.6 pounds over the last 3-4 weeks, net, I think - and given that my bodyfat is diminishing, I figure that this is just more of the body composition changes promised with this way of eating. 

Elizabeth had more confirmation yesterday that wheat is not her friend.  Had a breadstick at Olive Garden, on a fairly empty stomach, and it reacted almost immediately.  I'm glad we finally figured it out, but wish we'd tried this years ago - she probably would have been present at more of her junior and senior years of high school if we had.  Which brings me, in a round-about way, to the potato starch.  I was searching the celiac/gluten-free websites for non-wheat gravy thickeners, and potato starch, sweet white rice flour, and arrowroot came up.  I bought the first two on Saturday while shopping (never did find the arrowroot), to try out for Thanksgiving gravy.  I used the potato starch as thickener for the stew yesterday, mixed with cold water in a slurry and then added to my portion before eating, and it was perfect, so for now, I won't worry about the rice flour, which is touted as something one can make a reasonably decent roux with.  I'm thinking that with either of these, creamed chip beef on mashed potatoes can re-enter our diets - yeah!  That's such a family comfort food, and I've sort of been missing it.  And I know that Elizabeth has chip beef in her freezer.  I'll do some experimenting - maybe one night this week - and hope to bring her a recipe that works when I go out there next week.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Later, Friday

I have been stricken with a horrid case of boredom munchies.  Keeping it to things like very dark chocolate and nuts (altho' some are peanuts, which are not so good), but eating a lot this afternoon.  Ugh.


I detect a pattern.  On Friday, I weigh X.  Over the weekend, I commit some sort of dietary solecism, such as my chips-and-salsa binge last Sunday.  On Monday, sanity reasserts itself, and I eat properly all week, and, come the next Friday, I weigh X again.  And so it was this week.  147.2 this morning, with feet and ankles much closer to normal.  And an upcoming weekend with - I hope - fewer opportunities to sin.  But we shall see.

About a week ago, my sister posted on Facebook that she was in high hopes that the salt water had improved her lipids and thyroid numbers.  I heard from my parents last night that it hadn't done anything (I am not surprised).  I did finally have a minor rant about the salt water in the presence of someone other than Lee or Elizabeth; I think my father is of my opinion on it, but Mom is shelling out the $130/month for the snake oil and was a bit taken aback at my using terms like "placebo effect".  Oh, well.  I also went off on the subject of statins for women - because, with bad lipids (according to CW, anyway), my sister is on one.  She shouldn't be.  If she has thyroid issues, she should be on thyroid supplements.  And she should be eating to cure the metabolic syndrome that she's had for a fairly long time - I can think back 10 years to stories about her blood sugar being suddenly low and turning her into a minor ogre.  And, since she knows basically what we've been doing and dismissed it a while back as "not sustainable", I don't think there's much I can do for her.  Which is sad.

Got a grassfed sirloin tip steak in the fridge defrosting for dinner - planning on that and a sweet potato, both with lots of pastured butter.  I actually managed to produce an egg-and-bacon breakfast this morning, yeah!  Getting the timing right so that things can sort of cook unattended while I get ready for the day is tough, though.  But worth it - that is more satiating than most anything else I might eat in the morning.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Well, that's a bit better

Fasting works.  I got rid of quite a bit of the gained water over the course of the evening/night, and have more-visible ankles this morning.  Down by 1.4 pounds, to 148.2 this morning.   I'm not all the way there, though - my shoes are still tight.

Had a good dinner last night - 2 grass-finished hamburgers and zucchini parmesan.  The latter is an adaptation of a pasta recipe well-beloved around my family; for me, at least, it is possible to substitute thin-sliced zucchini ribbons (just using the vegetable peeler) for the pasta - and cooking the "noodles" is much quicker, maybe a minute or two at most.  So it's made by boiling the zucchini noodles with a bit of dried onion, draining them, and then adding butter, sour cream, parmesan cheese, and parsley to the hot pot, making a sauce.  The results are very tasty.

I can taste the most minor difference in the grass-finished beef from the corn-fed, but I actually prefer the grass-finished taste, so far.  I need to read up some more on the benefits, since the price is so much higher.  I like that the fatty acid profile is closer to fish, and think that it's being anti-inflammatory-er is a good thing, but what I don't know is if we are truly suffering from inflammatory things.  And I've read that beef, as a ruminant, somehow negates some of the grain-fed badness, but I haven't learned how, yet.

Unfortunately, the return to sane eating brought the leg cramps back.  I need to find something that will make them go away, without causing the kinds of issues I've been having this week.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


I got some of the foot-swelling to go away, but not all of it, by any means.  I wish I knew exactly what I did to trigger it, but I think perhaps the best bet would be to avoid chips and salsa just before flying, from now on.  Anyway, down to 149.6 again this morning, so my feet weigh a pound less than they did yesterday. 

I'm fasting this morning, just to get my system to clear up a bit.  I see a term on the various Paleo/Low-Carb websites occasionally: eating "clean", meaning good meat and vegetables and no refined carbs.  I did not do that this weekend, and I think I'm paying the price now, so a quick fast will do a reset and let me start fresh.

A plug for heavy cream, though: I was out late last night, and got maybe 6 hours of sleep.  Had cream in 2 cups of tea this morning, and feel far less dessicated than I usually do after a late night.  And it tastes so amazingly good!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


For reasons that are best known only to itself, my left foot has decided to swell all up today, with my right foot also swollen but a distant second.  Drinking crazy amounts of tea in an effort to spur it to let go.  If it's not back to normal in the morning, even if the nighttime becomes a steady sequences of bathroom trips, I'm fasting tomorrow.

So where would this have come from?  Some thoughts: plane flights in jeans, always good for some foot swelling; chips-and-salsa at the airport, full of salt and carbs (what was I thinking???); dinner yesterday, including 46g of pork-and-beans carbs and 7g of V8 carbs and added salt to taste.  Those would be my prime culprits, I guess.

Gosh - I hope the tea/liquid consumption works either now or after bedtime; it would be a serious problem if it started to work during an aria of some sort.


Weekend's catching up with me - I don't understand quite why weight gain is on a time delay, but it seems to be.  150.6 this morning, some of it water, judging by the state of my feet (swollen).  I had turkey bacon for breakfast, and needed both peanuts and jerky to get to the end of the day.  A concoction known as "Grandma Smith Chile" for dinner - ground beef, pork and beans, V-8, and chile powder.  It's quite tasty, if it isn't exactly Paleo.  Also some cheese and nuts in the evening.

Today I got up about 10 minutes early and managed to cook some eggs fresh.  I got very quickly tired of the quiches - they go all soggy and are just rather nasty to deal with after a couple of days, so while I'll probably make them again in some form, I won't make enough for a week at one sitting.  Dinner tonight (if I eat it) is either taco salad or something out, depending on the weather and my timing; going to the opera at 7:30.  And it's supposed to snow somewhere, starting this afternoon, so it may be I "rush" home, feed the dogs, and leave again immediately.  I hope not, but if this is the first storm of the season, everyone will drive like life-long Floridians for a day, and it could be ultra-nasty.

Monday, November 8, 2010

November 8th

Had a lovely weekend in Phoenix, and mostly ate well.  I think that Elizabeth's stomach finally convinced her to give up bread for real - we had In-N-Out for lunch Saturday and she had a bun and a near-immediate bout of lower-intestinal distress.  I left her with a bunch of spaghetti sauce (christening the new crock-pot), some cooked ground beef ready for taco salad or stroganoff or chile, and 5 individual foil pans of a family favorite casserole.  The last is a bit suspicious, though, because it uses concentrated cream of celery soup, and I'm not personally sure that it won't set her stomach off - I think it probably has wheat in it.

Anyway, capped off the weekend by eating chips and salsa at the airport - and as a consequence, was up to 149.6 this morning.  And I had leg cramps on Saturday night, despite potatoes at dinner two nights running, which should have kept the carbs at a reasonable level.  Apparently it wasn't enough.

For the record, the Flying Dutchman at In-N-Out is kind of boring - just meat and cheese.  I think I'll go back to protein-style and just eat it with a fork from now on.

Friday, November 5, 2010

That's odd

I kind of carbed up yesterday to keep the leg-cramps at bay: potato chips in the morning (stopped the "bubbly" sensation cold), cashews in mid-afternoon, and the somewhat-low-carb combo from McDonald's for dinner - a bunless double quarter pounder with cheese and a small fries (which, I learned yesterday, have some wheat in them - go figure).  I know the chips were double-digit carb grams, as were the fries, and I think the cashews were up there, too, so I figure I probably topped 60 grams, easily, which is really high for me.  Two results:
  • First, and probably of most short-term importance, I slept the night through with no eruptions to stomp hard on my left foot.  So I achieved my main goal.
  • Second, mysteriously, I was back at 147.2 this morning, so upping the carbs (granted, no obvious sugar involved in any of it), made the last of my water weight disappear - either that, or I lost actual fat and when the water goes, I'll weigh even less. 
Makes me think I have no idea how this juju works.  And I don't, really.  I trust the evidence and synthesis presented in Good Calories, Bad Calories, but even Taubes admits that all he's really done is busted the Lipid Hypothesis; the research isn't out there to tell us what we should be doing, really, except "not that".  I am really looking forward to his new book - I think it shows up in December.  Even if it is just GCBC boiled down for a mass consumer market, it should be a good read.

Weekend away coming up - a trip to Phoenix.  I think I see a protein-style In-N-Out double cheeseburger in my future...

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Boy, did I speak too soon.  I could feel leg cramps settling in, as if for the season, starting mid-evening yesterday, while I was watching TV.  Took 2 potassium and a magnesium before bedtime, but they did absolutely nothing.  I think I was out of bed dealing with them maybe only twice, but the cramp in both cases was in my shin - nearly impossible to stretch out, because the position needed invokes the calf cramp.  It seems like the only way to get it to go away is to relax - also very hard to do with your shin cramping up.  So I'm kind of tired this morning, compounded by both dogs getting cold (I guess) at 1 am and whining enough that I let them out of their kennels.  Ugh.

After 3 whole days living alone, I have great sympathy for Biz.  I had forgotten just how hard it is to feed oneself in that situation, and the lack of bread makes it doubly hard.  I had a sirloin burger for dinner last night, grilled, and absolutely plain.  A bit of the usual snacks afterward.  This morning, I could not face the quiche-and-bacon option, so I had more cheese.  "Cheese - it's what's for dinner" around our house right now, anyway.  Me and the Masai - the all-dairy diet.  Except I think they also consume blood.  I'm not into that.

Weight this morning: 148.2.  I really hate it when I have all that pain for nothing.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


So far, so good, with upping the tablet potassium and drinking V8 at breakfast.  I had a very low carb day yesterday and not a hint of a cramp overnight.  Breakfast was mini quiches and bacon, snack mid-afternoon was beef jerky, and I basically had cheese in the evening, along with some dark-chocolate almonds.  Not particularly nutritious, and I plan on having meat for dinner tonight.

Down to 148.0 this morning again, with the scale having a hard time deciding between that and 147.8.  However, I really would like to stay put in this general range, with variations for muscle gains and body-comp changes, I think.  Especially having just invested rather a lot of money in new clothes; I'd rather not do that again, especially as I've had to make some of the new clothes. 

I think I will be introducing some of the basic principles from the book, French Women Don't Get Fat into my way of eating as we move forward - the seasonal eating and mindful way of approaching treats, anyway.  Since I'm convinced, from a standpoint of non-expertise, anyway, that our insulin metabolism is really a mechanism to pack on fat for a long winter when the sweets are plentiful (late summer and fall), it seems logical that we should eat plants seasonally - fruits in summer and early fall, root veg and nuts over the winter, leaves in the spring, etc.  It may be a little harder in the vicinity of a supermarket (on the principle that it's summer somewhere, one could ignore seasons inside one), but worth a shot.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


I managed a full-day fast yesterday - didn't eat until dinner time, and then it was leftover meat from the day before.  I was very hungry - only hungry, not shaky or weak or lightheaded - by dinner, but I like being able to get the toxins out of my system and let everything rest - I feel better for it afterward.  Had some cheese and nuts-and-cheese-spread, and a bit of dark chocolate after - a reward for doing a fast while having to hear my co-workers bitch about the leftover Halloween chocolates I'd brought in (I wasn't going to eat them, after all!), and having to smell them - I don't really want to eat milk chocolates made with HFCS, but the smell is very tempting.  That said, the dark chocolate (Lindt 85% cacao) was way better.

I took extra potassium and a magnesium at bedtime last night, to ward off any cramp issues.  It seems to have worked, but it's possible that I haven't leached out enough potassium yet to have any leg cramps.  I added V-8 to breakfast as well as 2 potassium tablets, to see if I can keep things at bay for a while longer.  From what I've read, I really don't want to be potassium-deficient.

Down to 148.2 this morning, probably water.  I had a couple of crustless quiches and some precooked bacon for breakfast.  I'm finding that if you nuke the precooked bacon long enough, it's pretty good.  Not fabulous, but edible - and easier for me than turkey bacon when time is tight.  So I think that will work out pretty well.

Monday, November 1, 2010

More Monday

Last post was a bit brief; today's crazy-full of meetings (blecch).  I was only mildly tempted by the Halloween candy last night - and once I got away from the odor of milk chocolate, the temptation dissolved entirely, so I never had any of it, and it's been donated to work today, where I won't eat any of it again.  Fasting today - just want to let my digestive system rest a bit after the weekend.  Not hungry at all, so far (10:30 am).  I fasted breakfast yesterday, but did some snacking in the afternoon - cheese and nuts.  No problems having sufficient energy to plant 200 flower bulbs while in the fast yesterday morning.  I have leftover meat for dinner tonight - gotta love the French "paradox" - we both ordered a mixed grill entree and had steak, chicken, and sausage in a demi-glace that was beyond wonderful - and fully paleo.  So I'm having it some more tonight, minus the demi-glace, unfortunately.  I think that's something I need to learn to make, because it's definitely a "who needs roux-based gravy" item.

Realized last night that I should have got a smaller skirt when ordering some of my new clothes.  This is getting mildly ridiculous, really - I cannot stay the same size for more than about a week, sometimes (others, I stay put just long enough to decide to order new stuff, and then drop a size).  I am hoping that I'm starting to plateau permanently - I don't want to have to go "off the diet" in order not to lose weight!  And I wish I could get other people to realize that this really is not a "diet" in that sense - I keep having to tell everyone that this is just how I eat, now.  Sheesh!


Ate a lot of carbs over the weekend - La Loma for lunch Saturday and French food (with a bit of bread, mashed potatoes, squash soup, and flourless chocolate cake) for dinner last night.  Results (weightwise) better than I feared - only 148.8 this morning.  Apparently my body likes being in the 140s.  Weird.

Friday, October 29, 2010


I had more vegetables at dinner last night, and it seemed to help; only one nasty cramp in my left leg overnight, with weightloss unabated - 147.2 this morning.  At least, I think that's what it said.  My stomach is still a bit unhappy this morning, and after mentioning to Lee twice last night that I would probably fast today, he still expected me to state it again this morning, and since I didn't, he made turkey bacon for me (I caught him before he cracked any eggs, I think).  I ate it, along with a can of V8 to add food-origin potassium to the diet.  But I think that's it until dinner - just need to let things settle down a bit.

Biz is looking pretty good, from a weight standpoint - seems to have lost a goodish bit more since August.  I still want her to kill off the bread, though.  Hopefully that will happen starting next week - I nearly have Lee convinced that he shouldn't eat it either, so the two of them are going to try to reinforce each other in my absence.  I'm guessing I'll still end up as either the food cop or the food confessor - I get that from my mom all the time: she literally starts conversations with me by saying "I've been bad.  I ate a brownie last night."  Um, okay.  And?  Not my business; she's a big girl, after all.  Weird role reversal, though.

Anyway, with 3 more pounds gone since I bought my skinny jeans, I believe I can finally wash them with some confidence!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Okay, what did I eat?

A couple of things to note:

First, I am bloody sick and tired of the leg cramps, so I did some reading today.  Near as I can tell, it is a potassium thing, and - thank heaven - there are foods other than bananas that are high in potassium, so I am going to eat more of them.  Mostly veg.  Avocados, tomatoes, potatoes (with skin, not sure that's a good paleo thing to eat), etc.  I think if I add a V8 to my breakfast and buy some insta-guac and seal it in the vacuum thingie between helpings, that will probably substitute for a banana (aka sugar-fest).  Worth a shot, and it may be that those periods when I wasn't cramping as much had an increase in potassium-laden stuff that I just did not notice. 

Second, I am feeling hollow and shaky right now, and my digestion is not all that I would like it to be (nuff said on that).  At dinner last night, I had salad with some taco-meat-like stuff and chicken/pepper/onion fajita stuff on it, along with pico de gallo of some sort, and sour cream and guac.  Breakfast was just turkey bacon - nothing to see there, folks, move along.  Lunch was a burger patty smothered in green chile and cheese.  Shortly after lunch, I started feeling a bit off, and that's how I would characterize it at the moment, too.  So, based on the list above, either the chicken, salad greens, or fixings had been out too long (food borne illness), or the taco meat stuff last night and/or the green chile had flour in it and the flour is causing the issue.  Since I'm only a bit off - not a lot - I suspect flour.  But I don't really know, and probably won't.  Interesting, though.

Also, I lost 5.2 pounds last week - that's the most in a week since I started this in April.  Don't think it counts, though, since I can identify about 4 of the pounds as water.

October 28th

Ugh.  Just ugh.  I spoke too soon about the leg cramps; they came back last night, blood in their eye (I'm sure something that vicious has only one eye), and had me out of bed so many times that I lost count.  Granted, I did not take vitamins yesterday morning, since we breakfasted at IHOP, and I'm sure that contributed, but wow.  So I'm very very tired this morning.  Also thinner - weight was down to 147.8, which would boggle my mind if I could collect enough neurons to construct one this morning.  I had to take my wedding ring off to type this as it keeps falling off.  Yet another thing I have to get adjusted or replaced as I return to the old me.

I only had 3 pieces of turkey bacon this morning, which will not be enough to make it through lunch, so I'm not going to try.  I'll go to the local joint and get a naked steakburger.

I'm thinking I might be able to get a few more miles out of my too-big chinos (blue and brown, the ones I haven't replaced yet) if I shorten them an inch or so.  They get most of their bagginess from the fact that, without all that hip to fill them out, they're now too long.  Worth a shot, anyway - and they can't look much worse than they do now.

I also ran across a "before" picture that says it all for me - we were at a party in one of the Rockies suites, and I'm standing below a framed jersey, in my old khaki skirt.  I can't quite place the date on it, but it was over a year ago, so before I hit my all-time high weight in April.  The skirt was too small for my gut, which was bulging out - I looked gruesome (was going to say pregnant, and it was certainly of that magnitude, but it didn't convey pregnant at all; it was just gross).  Never again.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

October 27th

Not much to report, actually.  149.0 this morning, probably due to the very salty almonds I ate mid-day because I was hungry.  I'd be better off hiking next door for a naked burger of some sort, but it's getting cold out and I just don't wanna.  No leg cramps for the past few days, but I no longer see that as some sort of sign of being adapted to low carb; they'll be back.  Or not; either way, I'm not changing anything.

Slept like a rock last night - that's one thing about this way of eating that I'm grateful for; I went so long without being able to sleep soundly, and now I can.  It doesn't happen every night, but it's starting to be the norm.  Take Saturday night, for example.  I remember laying down around 9 pm, and I had a brief interlude of awake-ness (I've read a bit about "second sleep", and I think this is part of that mechanism) at 4 am, and the next thing I saw was 7:30 am.  It's probably been since high school or college that I've slept like that.  And last night, I turned the light out at 10 and was gone fully until around 5:20, just before the alarm went off.  Lovely!

The energy levels when I am awake are another bonus.  Got home last night, did some sewing, then stopped for an hour to watch NCIS.  But I couldn't just sit there, so I crocheted on an afghan I have in progress.  And when it was over, I went back and sewed for another hour - I had to; I couldn't not do something.  Used to be, we'd get home at night, get into the sweats, lump ourselves into the living room, and stare dully at the electronic furniture until bedtime, with no energy or even interest in moving.  No more.  And I'm just so grateful!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

October 26th

It's weird.  Periodically since I started eating low-carb, my body has gone on a losing spree - pounds would just seem to melt off, sometimes more than 1 per day.  I figured that 150 was about where I would settle, being a weight I can recall being in my early 20s (when I paid no attention to my weight at all).  But I seem to be on a losing spree at the moment.  No real change in eating, but I'm down this morning to 148.4.  Fine, whatever.  But it makes me wonder what I weighed in high school, since I've read in a couple of places that I'll end up there.

I saw a disturbing online ad this morning - Talbots now claims that they're fitting "every woman, every size" and lists 2-24 and 0-22P as proof.  Size 22 petite - really?  How on earth could size 22 be described as "petite"?  For the record, when I was a size 18 last spring, I bought a linen sundress from Talbots.  It was a beautiful dress, in terms of fabric and construction and overall design, but I did not look good in it.  I would now (in size 10 or 12), but a size 18 body just can't look good in clothes originally designed for a size 8 or 10.  One of the reasons I've returned to sewing and am enjoying it so much is that the effort pays off with clothing that looks good on.  Not that I lost my skills as a seamstress when I was fat (and I'm a good seamstress), but no garments I could make were ever flattering, and I had a hard time visualizing styles that might look okay at that weight.  So I stopped, and went shopping and generally hated it - and settled.  I don't have to settle anymore.

But if I drop another size, having just bought new chinos and other stuff (like the blazers and the stuff from the "TupperWEAR" party), I'll be mildly cranky - sorta.

Monday, October 25, 2010

October 25th

I haven't been able to report anything like this in quite a while - I weigh less on Monday than I did on Friday.  I'm at 149.0 this morning.  Behaved really well over the weekend, which bodes well for when Lee is gone for 3 weeks.  I actually saw 148.8 yesterday morning, but had a sweet potato with dinner, which might have added the .2 pounds back.  Whatever.  Another barrier crossed - the last time I weighed in the 140s, I was living in San Francisco and had reduced eating for stress-related reasons (the one and only time that ever happened! - and that time, I ended up at 135 for a while).

Good weekend.  Got lots of stuff done, including buying material for two pairs of wool pants and getting one of them mostly cut out.  The crustless mini quiches worked very well for a 3-4 day period in the fridge and were still good - taste and texture - on Saturday morning when I had the last of them.  We also tried some of the pastured beef - a flank steak, and it was very tasty.  It was also, unfortunately, 3 times the price of Costco (I took the price list with me on a trip there yesterday, to compare), so, unless it's proved to raise the dead (figuratively speaking), we probably won't repeat it.

I'm down to 25% body fat, based on measurements done yesterday.  Cool beans!  I could stop now, if I wanted, but don't know what that would mean, really - it's not like I'm going to readmit flour or sugar to my diet all of a sudden, so I'll just let my body decide where it wants to stop.  That, and keep up my once-a-week weights and crunches, and see where that gets me.

Friday, October 22, 2010


Working!  Found out when I walked up a hill at lunchtime - my hamstrings got some exercise last night... Ow.

October 22nd

At one point yesterday, I thought I'd fast from breakfast to breakfast today.  However, in late afternoon, my stomach decided for me that I wouldn't, after all.  Nonetheless, after the standard turkey-bacon-and-eggs breakfast, I had a combination of peanuts, mixed cheese, and a square of chocolate, and nothing else - and was fine with that.  Overnight was nasty - I had a hard time sleeping comfortably, mostly, I think, because it's not quite cold enough outside, but also because I was burning fat and getting rid of water, apparently.  Only one set of leg cramps, but the right shin cramp was a doozy - very hard to get those worked out.  Anyway, the end result is that I'm back to 150.2 again, and in deciding that's what I weighed this morning, the scale spent a lot of time looking at numbers in the 140s, so I think it's a way station (nearly wrote weigh-station) en route to a lower number.  Fine, whatever.  I just like that I can overcome my mistakes quickly - it was last Friday/Saturday that I ate so poorly and set up that 4-pound gain.

I did some very slow crunches and leg lifts last night, and some bicep curls with the 8-pound weights, and feel it a bit this morning.  Also some squats, although those more for figuring out proper form than for actual weight work.  I'm trying to do something once a week - and no more than that - and make whatever I do as intense as possible, since that seems to be the body recomposition wisdom out there.  Not looking to bulk up, but I want more muscle in the overall mix and I want to be stronger, so I'm hoping that I'm doing the right things for those goals.

Quiches for breakfast today - they are really working out well, and are very good even after re-nuking.  A keeper, I think.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

October 21st

Ugly night - out of bed with cramps at least 3 times, I think, and with winter coming on, the thrashing needed to get my feet on the ground is not minimal.  Lee had them too - we've both been trying to behave better after a rather bad weekend, and it seems, chez nous, that ketosis=leg cramps and always will.

For what it's worth, I was at 151.6 today - I think that's just under 2 pounds down from yesterday - and the water is pretty much gone.  Nice to see that even at what should be a "plateau", I can go all religious for a few days and undo a previous day's stupidity.

Trying again to get Biz to give up bread.  She was in for a follow-up after her vertigo from an ear-infection, and the doctor, for some reason, mentioned MS as one of the possible causes for her episodes of vertigo (FWIW, I'm skeptical, because that's pretty much the only thing on the giant list-o-symptoms that she has, and she's had vertigo since she was about 2, that I recall).  Since it's an auto-immune disease, and one of the hot treatments for that is low-carb - and since wheat is a prime cause of leaky-gut, which is thought to be the cause of auto-immune diseases, ... well, you get the picture.  Anyway, since she's also had some symptoms, starting in high school, that are very close to some of the more socially obnoxious symptoms of celiac, as well as migraines, and because she has the Chickasaw heritage from Lee's side of the family that may also contribute to gluten insensitivity, she just really needs to stop eating wheat.  I tried to explain that to her in an e-mail, adding that I can even tell now after having some wheat that I should not be eating it (in other words, she gets it from both sides of the family), and hope I made the point strong enough.  It can only be a good thing for her, if she can pull it off.  And that's the key - not having bread makes eating in this century rather inconvenient, and we've pushed eating off in a corner where its only value is convenient calorie intake.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

October 20th

I hope I got yesterday's date right; it seems like I've typed "20th" before, and recently.  Whatever.

Down a pound this morning - son-of-onslaught-of-tea apparently worked some, as did getting back to proper low-carb eating.  Now that I don't have water weight pain (and I did), I tend to think that the 3.2 pounds I'm up (at 153.4) from my previous low might actually be fat.  After all, the meatballs on Saturday night probably had breadcrumbs in them and the sauce was chili sauce an grape jelly.  I sense some insulin at work there, even though I also ate cheese and salami.  And wine, which was also sweet.  Okay.  Lesson learned.  Don't do that anymore.

So yesterday was turkey-bacon-and-eggs (ham, cheese, tomato omelet, actually) for breakfast, no lunch, and a weird miscellany from Country Buffet for dinner - a salad with lettuce, tomatoes, bacon, and blue cheese dressing and a pile of taco meat with salsa, sour cream, and chili con queso on top.  I may have also had some chunks of swiss cheese over the course of the evening; I was working with it.

Made something new for breakfast this morning, mostly as an experiment for when I'm on my own for 3 weeks next month: crustless mini quiche lorraines, made in a muffin tin.  They were pretty darn tasty, even having been made last night and reheated in the microwave.  Easy to make, quite edible, and I think I can do variations like cheddar/broccoli or even spinach.  So that's taken care of - I won't be doing a 3-week long series of 20-hour fasts, day after day.  Also had some commercial pre-cooked bacon (from Costco - and nasty at $14/pound), which was okay - nothing to write home about.  I like my bacon crispy, and this didn't quite reach that point via nuking this morning - maybe we need a longer nuke, or maybe an alternate method of prep.

The pastured meat arrives tonight via FedEx; I do hope we like the taste, because it would provide so much in the way of nutrition (and has to be nicer for the cows, I think).

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pastured meat coming soon

I finally bit the bullet and ordered some grass-finished beef from a company in Missouri that had prices that didn't make me wince - well, much.  The barrier to doing it earlier was that all orders had to be at least $75, and that seemed like a high entry point to sample something - what if we don't like the flavor?  Anyway, it's supposed to arrive tomorrow, so we'll have an opportunity to test it out and see what we think - at least we'll be making an informed decision to go forward or not.  We like bison, and I'd thought it was all pastured, until I saw bison eating corn in a feedlot last year - I honestly didn't think they were domesticated enough for that, but I was wrong.  Anyway, I hope we like it, because the health benefits are akin to eating fish, which I don't like all that much.

October 19th

I feel blecchy.  Ate fairly normally yesterday: eggs and turkey bacon for breakfast, had a bag of beef jerky around 2 pm due to rumbling hunger pangs, and dinner was ham, sweet potato with butter, and some roasted brussels sprouts with dijon, worcestershire, and olive oil on them.  And a square of chocolate after.  When I went to bed, my stomach was unhappy, but not in any particularly specific way - and it still is.

Drank a lot of tea yesterday hoping to get some of the water weight/swelling to go away.  It didn't work - apparently, I still need it - 154.4 this morning again - and still stiff, swollen, and sore.  I'll try the tea again today - it is a diuretic, after all, although I'm so adapted to it that it would probably take gallons to work its magic on me.  But flushing liquid through a body does eventually cause it to relinquish any retained fluids, so it'll work eventually.

Monday, October 18, 2010

October 18th

Weird weekend.  I am swollen, stiff, and sore this morning, after bouts of dirt-shoveling and cleaning out the vegetable gardens, and weigh almost 4 pounds more than I did on Friday (154.2).  Water, most of it, I think, although I didn't eat very well this weekend, what with a movie and a shopping party at one of the neighbors.  I tried to get a fair amount of protein yesterday, to help rebuild my sore muscles from the dirt shoveling and gardening.  Hopefully that will help.

Friday, October 15, 2010

October 15th

Wow - middle of the month already; October is going fast.  I ate 3 meals yesterday - unusual for a weekday, but after a meeting at 11:00 with people who seemed to think it would be a good idea to scatter Halloween chocolate over the meeting table, I needed something.  I did not eat the chocolate, but I'm wondering if being in its presence and smelling it may have triggered an insulin release, because I walked out hungry.  Anyway, I ran to the local burger place and had a naked burger with guacamole, bacon, and swiss cheese, and a bit of coleslaw.  And then had dinner at Red Lobster, including salad with blue cheese dressing, a whole (double) chicken breast with "Mediterranean" sauce on it (olive oil, italian herbs, tomatoes, shrimp), and some broccoli.  I didn't need to snack last night, making me think that we need to buff up our dinners a bit. 

I also lifted some weights and did some crunches and lower-ab things; not sore (much) yet, but probably will be by day's end.  I'm trying to do super-slow lifts and slow crunches/ab work to exhaustion at least once a week, to start building some strength and add a bit more muscle definition.  Probably when Lee goes to Phoenix next month, I'll start doing a gym night (Mondays?), so I can work on my legs, which definitely need some strength work.

After a couple of weeks on Vitamin K2, I think I see some changes in my skin - it's not as rough and bumpy as it used to be on my forearms, and my hands look younger - to me, at least.  We're taking those once a week on Mondays, now.

Weight's at 151.4 this morning - not too surprising, I think.  My stomach's a bit upset at something - not sure what it might be.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

October 14th

Had another attack of the munchies last night after dinner - walnuts and cheese, this time.  Down to 150.8 this morning, though, so no worries.  Slept rather rotten - couldn't get and stay comfortable.  Too hot, then too cold, then laying in an awkward position.  Ugh.  Left me feeling stiff and clumsy.

Finally ordered a couple of pairs of new pants - size 12, not 10.  I'm betting, with this order, that I stay around my current weight for a while.  And unless we really start going to the gym soon (maybe something I can do when on my own for nearly a month), I don't think my measurements are going to change much.  But seriously - in April, I was a size 18, and starting to wonder if I would be seeing 20 soon.  Now, 14s are large on me (wearing another skirt on the brink of donation this morning).  It's all good.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

October 13th

The fast yesterday went a bit weird - I got hungry out of boredom around 2:30, and took my last dollar (the last one I had on me, anyway) down to the machine for some peanuts.  Only there weren't any - they were out.  So I got trail mix instead, and had a giant bolus of sugar, what with the raisins and faux M&Ms and all.  It wasn't very good, but it made the hunger go away. 

Dinner was a cheeseburger on the grill - I left the cheese on for 2+ minutes with the lid closed, and the drippy bits caught on fire, a little.  The top was all bubbly, and it was basically perfect.  But not enough food.  So I had some more cheese, and some chocolate (for the record, Godiva 85% cacao is nastier than Lindt, and has more sugar in it - not sure how they pulled that off, because the nastiness is not due to being sweeter), and some dried strawberries - the last of them.  I should probably make more before there aren't strawberries handy.  I just had the munchies a good part of the evening.

Anyway, the fast day triggered a mild leg night - one episode of stumbling out of bed to step on my left foot, which very nearly didn't wake me up at all.  And a minor loss - back to 151.0 this morning.  Had breakfast today - back to the regular routine now that Lee's home for a while.

Some observations from Seattle: the people there are immense.  Not just fat, although they make me look like a concentration camp survivor by contrast; they're tall and just big.  I remember reading that height increases generation over generation may also be the result of overfeeding - a similar mechanism to obesity, but operating when the growth hormone is in full sway.  I don't know if that's the case, but the northwesterners certainly appear to be operating in a land of plenty.  So maybe I take back what I've said about Colorado, because we don't even compare to the Washingtonians.  Bottom line?  America is fat all over, and much of it is morbidly obese.  I am so glad I managed to stumble onto this way of eating in time to do something about it for us.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

October 12th

Mild gain after a weekend away - up to 151.8 again (wasn't I there at the beginning of last week?).  I think I ate pretty well - may be going overboard on the saturated fat, though, so I'm going to back off in that area a bit - only do cream tea in the morning and eat less cheese and bacon.  No reason for thinking that, by the way, but I'm trying to be balanced as a general rule.

No leg symptoms of late, which would indicate to me that maybe I'm not in hard ketosis these days.  Some, though - I can taste it in my saliva when I am.  I like being keto-adapted - it makes life so much easier to deal with when I know I won't be a slave to blood glucose levels!  Very helpful yesterday, for example: when I woke up (6:00 ish), I was starving, but not glucose-starving.  We never did get "breakfast", but ate lunch at the airport, around 11:30 am (in my home timezone, anyway).  Then, I didn't have any more food (only a venti tea at Starbucks with half-and-half in it) until after 9 pm.  Granted, at that point I had a lot of cheese, some walnuts, some cashews, and some chocolate, but if I hadn't felt all "snack-y", I would have been fine going all night.

I'm IFing this morning because I didn't want to get up early enough to cook anything.  Definitely got to figure that one out for the long stretch cooking for only me, because I can't do 3 solid weeks only eating dinner.  At least, I don't really want to.

Friday, October 8, 2010

October 8th

150.2 again this morning.  Had a fun dinner that I will probably do again - if you go to McDonalds and ask for one of their burgers without the bun, you get it in a plastic salad bowl, but with all the fixings.  And it tastes like a McDonalds burger, eaten with a fork.  I had (possibly because I knew I could) a double Quarter Pounder with cheese that way.  And a small fries, because the thing that got me thinking about McDonalds last night was the smell of fries cooking as I walked from work to my car.  Result?  No weight gain, no (thank heaven) leg cramps overnight, and a loss back to where I was last Saturday morning.

Will it stick over the weekend?  I tend to doubt it.  We'll be in Seattle, and in particular going to a way wonderful French restaurant while we're there - C'est Si Bon, in Port Angeles.  It is actually possible - easy, even - to eat fairly Paleo in a French restaurant (there is no such thing as the French Paradox; goose fat is good for us), but it is travel, and rather goofy travel (weird hours, no sunlight forecast, etc), and I just have some doubts.

I can't gain much, though.  Got my skinny jeans on.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

One other note

Since I had the house to myself last night, I did a few weight-lifts (4-lb weights, I think; just upper arm stuff) and sit-ups before going to bed.  I can sort of feel it this morning - just a little tiny bit stiff.  And I didn't do enough to aggravate my right shoulder, which has been periodically cursing my name since I tried similar lifts with the 8-lb weights some months ago, so hopefully I can keep doing it.

October 7th

Well, that's more like it - maybe 152.2 was water-driven after all.  I was 150.8 this morning, after a normal breakfast, a dinner consisting of cheese (colby and swiss), berries, and heavy cream (oh, yum!), some nut-and-cheese-ball snacks, and a square of leftover hotel chocolate, brimming with sugar.  I just didn't feel much like cooking last night, and while an all-cheese meal might sound unhealthy, or at least unbalanced, I don't plan to do it again tonight.  Not that I know what I will do. 

I did fast today, since I'm on my own until next Wednesday (I think) and just did not feel like getting up earlier than usual in order to cook something.  Of course, on that basis, I could conceivably not have breakfast tomorrow, Tuesday, or Wednesday, either.  Not sure I want to do that long a stretch of 20-hour fasts, though, so I will have to come up with something.  Guess I could have cheese...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

October 6th

No change in weight today - still 152.2.  Reassuring in a way, I guess; I can discern a pattern, and the gain has stopped, which means if I fast tomorrow (for convenience more than anything; Lee will be out of town and cooking breakfast is time-consuming), things should be headed back to the 150.2 region shortly. 

I found out yesterday evening that there was a reason I've been hungrier than usual in the mid-afternoons this week (I have been).  Lee had decided that, since he's been having yogurt with his eggs and turkey bacon, we should cut back to 3 eggs between the 2 of us rather than 4.  So I, who do not eat yogurt, had suddenly been cut off from half an egg.  I think it's fixed again, going forward.  I know what started it - he gets nervous about eating so many eggs, after the "eggs contain cholesterol.  High cholesterol is bad.  Eating eggs is bad." propaganda of the late 70s/early 80s (the years when America began getting really fat).  He rebels against this way of eating fairly frequently, just sure that it's unhealthy, because the doctors all say so.  But the doctors do not study nutrition, and the little that gets thrown in to their general medical education is all Lipid Hypothesis-based, so all they know to say is "the fat you eat is the fat you wear" and things of that sort.  So he's nervous about the way we are eating, even as he's about to weigh less than 200 pounds for the first time in over 20 years, and is looking visibly thinner.  And even in the face of my rather dramatic blood pressure and lipid profile improvements back in June, and his reduced blood pressure (he is up for a physical shortly, but hasn't had it yet, so no lipids for him).  I expect that when he gets his next results, he will be able to go off his BP meds, his metabolic syndrome will have ebbed, and his lipids will be enough better that he could broach the subject of backing off on the statins (but he won't; he believes in them implicitly).  Will that stop him being nervous?  Probably not.

Had a rather odd dinner last night - we went to Qdoba and I had ground beef with queso, guacamole, pico de gallo, sour cream, and cheese on it.  It didn't taste as good as I'd hoped.  Also had a piece of swiss cheese before dinner (my missing half an egg had me hungry) and some cheese-ball-and-pecans after.  That, along with the 1.5 egg and turkey bacon, was it for the day.  If humans operated strictly on calorie counts and the 2nd law of thermodynamics, I'd have wasted away by now.  That I could lose weight on far more calories and maintain on fewer, in what is, granted, an n=1 study, proves decisively to me that there's more here than meets the eye.

We did get the K2 and are trying to take it weekly, since it's a rather large quantity and the Whole Health Source blog tends to think we shouldn't overdose on it.  I can't say for sure that my skin has improved (I've taken a whopping 2 of them), but it seems smoother and less dry.  For what it's worth...