Tuesday, November 25, 2014


Let's see. Yesterday was stressful, due to outside news and what-have-you - interesting that it didn't affect me much, but I was distracted by it - I ate dinner out, and slept like a rock and lost a bit over a pound. Glad to see we're not all hidebound about following patterns around here. 153.2 this morning. 

Nutrition breakdown yesterday was 69.7% fat, 10.3% carbs, and 20% protein, with carbs just shy of the "magic" 50 grams. I was between Trace and Small ketosis at bedtime. We did not exercise. Both of us got cold when out and about running errands, although the weather has been not that cold (it was probably in the mid-30s), and never warmed up until bedtime. Just noting it - no idea if it's useful information or not - but it may have contributed to my good night's sleep - being cold is usually helpful for my sleep patterns.

Eggs and bacon for breakfast today, macadamias if I get hungry, and I think a big-ass salad for dinner. I don't know if we will hit the gym or not - guessing not, though. And then 5 days off for Thanksgiving and the weekend, which should be very nice.

Monday, November 24, 2014


Kind of an up-and-down weekend. I lost a pound and a half, and gained part of it back, I slept rotten Saturday night, but great last night without sleep aids of any sort. Worked out Saturday along with doing all sorts of stuff around the house (pain was one of the reasons I slept badly), was kind of a veg yesterday, although I polished silver, cleaned a bathroom, and ironed napkins. And nearly napped in front of the fireplace all afternoon.

154.4 this morning, after a low on Saturday morning of 153.6. I didn't eat terribly well all weekend - for ketosis, anyway. More carbs than usual, but not a lot of sugar - lots of corn, actually, with tortilla chips both days.

We did get in a 2-mile walk at the gym on Saturday, and I made sure to slow down toward the end - no residual dizziness, I'm happy to say. After that, we cleaned gutters (Lee) and windows (my work), and I scrubbed the paw prints out of the back seat of my car. And, as a result, my feet and ankles were very achy from 2 through 5 am on Saturday. I really need to learn to get out of bed and get aspirin when that happens; once I did, I was finally able to sleep a little.

So, Thanksgiving week. We have a monstrous turkey, and gluten-free cornbread for stuffing, and a gluten-free crust for pumpkin pies. And a road race Thursday morning that should allow me to carb up in the afternoon okay. I think the plan for the week needs to be sensible going into the day, a "treat" day with limits on the day itself, and keeping the leftover noshing to the non-carby elements. Get in a couple of gym trips prior to Thursday, and maybe one or two after - just a lot slower - because we also have a race a week later, on the 6th.

I think that's it. I really wish we could have got in an outdoor walk this weekend, but it's just been too cold for Lee. I guess the time outside working on the gutters and windows will have to do.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Likely cause of the dizziness

Almost certainly this. I didn't slow down for my last lap at all, and pretty much went straight to the car and sat down. Duh.


First, get the routine stuff out of the way. 155.2 this morning, Small-Moderate ketosis at bedtime last night, sleep went well, but only with the aid of Benadryl (although I was falling asleep on the couch by 7:45, I think). I haven't fully tracked eating yet, but imagine it was in the high 60s for fat % at a minimum.

So here's the non-routine stuff. We went to the gym last night, and I walked 2 miles using one of my racewalk training playlists, coming in somewhere around 13:30/mile. Felt pretty good, certainly it wasn't any sort of cardio workout for me. We got done with that, and were going out to dinner, and were on the final stretch of that drive, when I got all sorts of dizzy - the drive was making me completely unable to focus on one point or anything or position myself in space. Once we got parked, I sat still for a moment, tried to get out of the car, and couldn't, so we ended up going home. By that time, driving wasn't bugging me, and I was able to get out and make it into the house. I sat down for a while, and by the time Lee had gone to the Chinese place for food and back, I was pretty much over whatever it was, and I felt fine by the time I went to bed (at 8) and am fine now.

During the episode, I started a headache, which dwindled, and had tinnitus in both ears (I have sporadic tinnitus in my right ear, but not my left), and my left ear felt stuffed up. That's all gone now, I think. I ate some candy when we got home, and dinner helped a lot - I realized that I was really hungry after I started eating.

I don't know what this was. Factors to consider include: fasted workout, trying to get back into ketosis after a period of slacking, extra magnesium taken this week for mild constipation, and some really bad sleep issues. I checked for signs of things like strokes, but there weren't any - I just got horribly lightheaded and then it stopped. Low blood-pressure? Maybe. Low blood-sugar? Maybe. Exhaustion? Probably, but in combination with something else. And maybe some sort of electrolyte balance, although my pulse seemed steady enough at the time. I'll keep an eye out, and will make sure to have a piece of cheese before working out from now on. If it happens again, at least I have this record of it so I can compare possible causes with then. I hope it doesn't, though. That was rather nasty. Lots of empathy with Elizabeth, who has this sort of thing happen somewhat routinely.

Maybe another hint that this just isn't a time to do anything more ambitious than to maintain my weight.

Thursday, November 20, 2014


Life kind of sucks right now. I woke up this morning, thinking it was time to get up, and it was 2:39. And after letting the dog out (she was whimpering a bit, but it was temperature that convinced me the night was over), I went back to bed and laid there for over 2 hours before drifting off again. Except that's way too static a description of what I did. I laid on one side, got uncomfortable (pain or over heating - or freezing, for that matter), rolled over, did it some more, got up, drank water, listened to my iPod, listened to radio, drooled a bit, and, just before the alarm was due, fell a little asleep - but lightly, enough that I was awake again at 5:28 wondering if the alarm was going to go off.

Apparently I looked so pathetic that Lee wanted me to stay home and not drive to work - he offered to drive in to get my laptop - an 80-mile round-trip during rush hour. I didn't take him up on it, and I am here, but limp and droopy and stupid, for sure.

155.4 this morning. I tried so hard yesterday to be good - at dinner, I had a salad and a pile of smoked turkey. And got home and was starving, so I had cheese, and then a whole bunch of cashews. I am on the brink of giving up on weight loss and just praying I can maintain where I am for a while, maybe lean out a bit through walking and weights, and call it good. Because I have no control over what's happening right now, and until I'm over this soul-destroying period known as menopause, I don't see how I can do anything that has predictable results. And I'm not fat - my wardrobe fits me and looks good on, not tight or anything - I'm just afraid that it won't stay that way unless I get a few more pounds off.

For what it's worth, I was in Moderate ketosis last night. All I can think is that I haven't managed the necessary population of enzymes to make use of the ketones, because there's no way I should have been so hungry after dinner - but my stomach was growling, it wasn't some psychosomatic deal. After the cashews were added in, I was 68.8% fat, 8.8% carbs (and 51 g, so more than normal), and 22.5% protein.

Back at it today; eggs and sausage for breakfast, broccoli cheese soup and macadamias here, and something for dinner - no idea what. But all I really want right now is consistent good sleep.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Low-Carb Flu

I'm trying not to do a faceplant on my desk right now - wobbly and sleepy and drained. I think it has to be adaptation time. I screwed up last month. I should know better. Maybe noting it here will remind me next time.


I thought last week was going to be perishingly long, but no, this week is. I thought yesterday was Wednesday at first, and now today should be oh, maybe Friday - that would be nice.

I slept last night, but am still sleepy and feeling foggy and weak. Low Carb flu? Maybe - I don't know if I had fallen that far off the wagon in October, but it could be. And I did sleep last night - hard enough to dream vividly enough to wake me up at 4:30. Now, if I can just get a night's sleep that is restful, I'd be golden. 

155.6 this morning - and I truly thought it would have gone down overnight. On the other hand, why should I? See yesterday afternoon's entry, which shows that I have nothing in my bag of tricks that would affect my weight in any way whatsoever. Not on a daily basis, anyway. I may try some regressions against weeks or something - but doubt it will change.

Yesterday's eating came in at 78.7% fat, 7.9% carbs, and 13.4% protein. The carbs were at 35 g, so there is room to drop there, and maybe that's what I'll have to do. I was at solid Small ketosis last night, though, for the first time since getting strict again about watching, and my calves are fasciculating this morning, although they did not cramp last night. Thank Goodness for that; it would have been adding insult to injury.

Probably walking at the gym tonight. Maybe a few weights. Broccoli cheese soup and macadamias while at work, a fairly standard breakfast and who knows what for dinner. We did manage brats last night.

Oh, for a nap right now...

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Results of analysis of how I ate this summer

Between June 9 and August 22, I lost about 4 pounds, more or less steadily (lots of ups and downs, but the overall trend was definitely down). And I had been fairly strict about logging in LoseIt over that period, so I had reasonably complete datasets for nutrition as well.  So I did a little basic regression and correlation by date, to see if I could figure out what was or was not working for me in that period.

I'm sure there's a way to post charts here, but probably not via email, and that's about it for me right now. To summarize the results:
There appears to be no correlation at all between calories, fat grams, or protein grams consumed one day and the amount of weight lost or gained the next morning. None. Those charts have a flatlined linear regression trendline. Between carb % or carb grams consumed one day and the amount of weight lost or gained the next morning, there's a slight negative correlation: that is, I lost mildly more weight the day after I'd consumed higher amounts of carbs than I did the day after I'd consumed lower amounts of carbs. In a general sense, that is. I also lost weight the day after I'd consumed very low carbs, and gained after consuming high amounts.

Now, I have always noticed that my weight change seems to lag a day or two behind any spikes (positive or negative) in eating, and I may try shifting the data for intake another day against the weight changes, see if that shows anything. But I thought it was interesting that nothing I did this summer appears to have had any real effect on my weight loss success or failure - the control was, at least superficially, not in my hands at all.



I mean, sometime this week, to take the macronutrient percentages and correlate them to my weight gain or loss, day by day - see if I can figure out what levels worked best for me over the summer, when I was actively losing weight. In the meantime, I hit 71% fat, 6% carbs, and 23% protein yesterday, and felt quite satisfied at about 1300 calories, so I do think ketosis has kicked back in, despite hitting only Trace->Small on the test stick last night again. 155.0 again this morning, still stiff and sore and sluggish.

We walked and did a few weights last night, which we both sort of regretted later. Lee was at least practical about it - when the dogs woke him up at midnight (and they all combined to wake me up), he went and took Advil. I tried to tough it out, and took an hour and a half to get back to sleep - sort of. It was one of those nights - freezing or sweating were my only options. Not good. I'm struggling with that this morning as well. So today will be a "recovery" day with no exercise whatsoever.

That said, I did a sub-14:00 mile even not trying too hard. So there's that. My speed is definitely improved.

Stress seems to be my one success of the moment. I've been listening to music on the commute instead of talk radio, and I can definitely tell a difference. I don't feel anywhere near the edge anymore, and that's nice. And I'm feeling much less urge to snack.

More broccoli soup today, and macadamias, and no idea what we're doing for dinner, which probably means a restaurant. I will try to avoid Mexican and Chinese, and see where that gets us. If at home, I'm proposing brats and kraut.

Monday, November 17, 2014


And back at Monday again - no matter how many times I think I've escaped, it keeps coming back. Ah, well.

Pretty good weekend, I think. Got a lot done - 2 trips to the gym (!), cooking for the future, miscellaneous errands, silver polishing, picture re-framing, miscellaneous housecleaning - all sorts of things. I like that sort of weekend; it makes me feel like I've had one, where the ones spent resting and not doing much leave me feeling like I never stopped working at my paying job. The 2 gym trips proved very interesting - I walked a total of about 5 miles between them, on the track, to my "loud car music" playlist, and averaged somewhere around 13-minute miles both days. Yesterday, my second mile came in under 12 minutes. And generally, they didn't feel hard, although I'm stiff and a bit inflamed today from them.

Which brings me to my weight - 155.0 this morning, and I feel swollen up all over. I hope it's water and not fat, because my clothes are decidedly uncomfortable this morning - they fit okay, but as if I've changed shape in unexpected ways. Not pleasant.  

Eating yesterday came in at 65% fat, 6% carbs and what, 29% protein, I think? Not too bad - and quite bereft of snacking for once - as I said, I stayed busy yesterday.

Sleep, unfortunately, has been shite. I'm not quite sure why, but I'm having more hot flashes than usual. Again. I woke up thinking it was nearly morning at 10:30 pm. So annoying. Saturday night wasn't much better, nor was Friday, although for at least one of those, we had a space heater inadvertently running all bloody night, making the room rather hot.

Ketones were approaching Small last night - in between Trace and Small, but closer to Small. So my approach is getting close to where I want it to be. I have Fat Fast broccoli soup for lunch this week, and macadamias, and am hoping to stay at or above that point all week. Barring some horrid hormone-infused chocolate binge, I think I can do it.

Friday, November 14, 2014


And, 153.4. Good trend this week, although truly, it's just getting me back where I was before the sugar binge a couple of weeks ago. I will work hard to keep the momentum going.

Sleep and stress was good yesterday, until after dinner. A bit of evening work that had everything out of our direct control that could go wrong, do so. I got to bed just before 11 and slept reasonably well, but I'm beat this morning. Tired and achy and stupid. Hope I make it through the workday - and grateful that no driving is involved.

Trace ketones at bedtime - but solid Trace. Still shooting for Small as my steady state, and I think I'll get there.

Eating yesterday was pretty normal until evening - breakfast, cheese and macadamias, low-carb pizza for dinner - and I kept snacking in the evening to some cheese crisps (all cheese), and the last fun-size halloween candybar I am willing to eat - a Milky Way. 12 g of carbs in something the size of my thumb - sheesh!

Still no exercise. Will try again tonight.

Thursday, November 13, 2014


A day at home leads to more snacking. Seems like I can't avoid it, really, and I ended up at 66% fat, 11% carbs, and 23% protein, with the carbs being over 50g and protein over 100g. That said, I was solidly at Trace ketosis at bedtime, and lost a pound (no doubt, of water) overnight - 153.6 this morning. So that's good.

No real exercise this week; I can't ask Lee to go out in that weather, since cold causes him a lot of pain. I am hoping to get to the gym this weekend, at a minimum.

Stress - I think some of my ideas are working. In addition to just listening to classical music on the radio, I repurposed one of the family iPhone 3s that is just sitting around the house, turned it into a car-only iPod, and loaded it up with my classical and sacred (and Christmas) music, so I can run my own "station". This morning, my drive to work was all Purcell - very soothing, and I feel quite calm and serene. It's all good, and I will keep working to find opportunities to inject stress-relief into my days. I don't know that working at home yesterday hurt any either - me and the fireplace and a jazz playlist and pots and pots of tea. A good way to spend a day, even if there was work to be done.

Sleep yesterday was pretty good. I'm falling asleep quickly, and don't recall awakening before 5:15 last night. Don't feel quite rested, though, so I may not have slept all that deeply. I guess one of these days I should run that sleep quality app again, see what's going on.

More eggs and bacon this morning, string cheese and macadamia nuts with me, and no idea what's for dinner. Possibly Chinese, which means leaving the house for a bit, I guess. And I could have a mildly late night, since we have a deployment at work.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


I kept things under control yesterday - a very good thing! The day's eating worked out to 75% fat, 7% carb, 18% protein. I can live with that. For what it's worth, I am at 154.6 this morning - must have been water, or at least, I guess that's what it was. No substantive ketosis at bedtime - maybe a slight tinge of Trace at most. Anyway, my goal at the moment is to start hitting Small on the keto-stix pretty much daily, and see if that's enough to start dropping.

I know this works - I've seen it work this past summer - but the cravings and what-not have derailed me so often this year that it feels a bit like that definition of insanity - doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. 

I'm logging my food in LoseIt for a while, to try to get back in the habit of eating a bit more sensibly - and to get some data about what works to maintain ketosis and what does not - so I won't duplicate that here.

On the stress front, I put the radio on XM Symphony and listened to Barber and Mozart all the way home last night - and despite a nasty drive (snow and starting to get slick), I think I made it home in pretty good shape. Sleep wasn't great - I need to foam-roll my hips because I'm having some aches that are making me change position a lot. That's on the agenda for today.

Eggs and bacon for breakfast, soup for dinner tonight. Since I'm working at home, not sure what the middle will be yet.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Oh, goody. A short week after a vacation. Four days that will seem like 14, give or take. Or maybe not. I could survive it just fine. We'll have to wait and see.

I think the eating on vacation was an improvement over last week. A little sugar, a few french fries, but not mindless handfuls of candy. I have disposed of the candy corn, too. 155.8 this morning - not too surprised, and maybe a bit relieved. So, here we go again, trying to understand what works for me regarding weight loss right now, and what does not. 

Certainly over the course of the year, I succeeded best when in ketosis. And I think that's probably my best bet going forward. What I struggled with - up through last week, even - was avoiding sweets and staying in a ketotic eating approach. That has been so much harder than before. I've looked into a lot of ways to deal with it, including tryptophan/5-HTP or whatever it is, and can only assume that it's to do with hormones - certainly, part of PMS always involved carb cravings, and while menopause is not PMS, my hormones are certainly "off". So, maybe.

And now we're heading into the Holiday Season, fraught with danger of all sorts. I would have liked to be coming into this season below 150, and I'm not. But my clothes still fit - thanks, I think, to the walking we've been doing. Hoping we can keep that up (it was 18 this morning on the drive in to work, and supposed to snow - winter has officially arrived) - at the gym, if necessary. I think it also helps with my stress, although part of that was from being outside in nature, as well - and I think I will try to walk outside on weekends, regardless of the temps.

I had eggs and sausage for breakfast today, have a couple of pieces of string cheese with me, as well as macadamias, and short ribs in the crock pot for dinner, possibly with mashed cauliflower. Onward...

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Completely out of control. I shouldn't be, but I am. I hate this. I did great all day until dinner, craved - and ate - french fries, and followed that up with handful upon handful of candy corn. 155.8. It should probably be worse.

Got a 1.1 mile walk in this morning though - took the light rail to work so I would not have a car here all weekend. Fasted, too - we didn't have time for breakfast in order to get to the light rail on time. Light rail is not a viable option for me under normal circumstances - as bad as my commute is, it's still faster. Ugh.

At least the election is over - that was definitely a source of stress for me. One down, many to go. I was so wired up from that stress - and all the sugar, I think - that even with a 10 mg Melatonin, I slept like crap. Although I fell asleep easier than I would have expected, which may be due to sheer exhaustion from the years of night sweats or something. I'm kind of a mess right now.

Vacation starts tonight. My plan is to eat as well as I can manage while we're gone. Try to avoid even buying sugary anything or fries. Stay away from chips and whatever (salsa, guac, etc), and hope for the best. Not sure what else I can do right now; I'm fighting demons and this past week or so, they've been winning.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


Yesterday didn't turn out to be a great start. Still at 155.4 this morning, and I didn't even see the point of testing for ketones at bedtime. Here's the day:
  • tea with cream
  • the usual supplements
  • scrambled eggs
  • 4 pieces of bacon
  • 2 string cheeses
  • 12 macadamia nuts
  • 2 mellocreme pumpkins
  • chips and salsa (not very many, but it probably didn't matter)
  • 2 cheese enchiladas
  • rice and beans (I cleaned my plate)
  • a gluten-free red velvet cupcake with cream cheese frosting
  • 2 small handfuls of candy corn
Shortish list, but look at all that sugar. Not good.

I'm in a slump right now. Battling with the black dog a bit - life is very neutral, is how I'd describe it. I can't muster much emotion, and when I do, it's negative. I can manage anger, anxiety, weepiness, but not much humor or contentedness or actual happiness. Elizabeth is visiting for the first time after moving away, and I can only get to "meh". Maybe hormones, maybe fall (SAD?), maybe stress, maybe just being me. Anyway, I'm pretty sure that the sugar-noshing is a search for serotonin. And it's not working.

So, today? Start again, again. The usual breakfast (eggs and turkey sausage this morning), macadamias for use as hunger dictates throughout the day, something for dinner (don't know what yet). Hope for the best. Keep trying. That's all I can do, really.

Monday, November 3, 2014


Another week, another suck. 155.4 this morning, after a weekend of stress and sugar. I actually bought candy corn - and have been eating it. I made gluten-free red-velvet cupcakes for Biz' family birthday celebration last night, and ate 2 of them. I ate chips like a crazy person on Saturday night, for the salt, I think. I had a hard cider.

So much for the sugar - and those cupcakes weren't lacking in it, for sure! - the stress was all about crowds. We spent much of Saturday running errands at the mall (crowds), and ended up at my niece's State Gymnastics meet (more crowds - they won as a team and she came in 4th on Floor, so it was all good, but still - crowds). Yesterday, more errands, back to the mall, and a family dinner which started at 2 pm on the dot and ended around 7 pm, I think. I spent the afternoon sitting on "hostess seats" - i.e., having given all the actual furniture to the guests, I ended up on a footstool or dining room chair - and my back was killing me. That, and sitting through a football game with my father and brother-in-law, both of whom are far too into the team for my comfort anymore, kept me going out to check on the progress of dinner. And bringing in alcohol, and going out into the garage to take a deep breath.

These gatherings have not bugged me as much in the past. I know I'm way too near my screaming meemies threshold these days, and yesterday made that all too obvious. I think I was asleep last night before 9 pm (oh, and the time change. Not the most wonderful time of the year for me).

So we're starting over today. Again. And again next week, if necessary. The walking is helping, but now it's dark at night, so I don't know when we can do it. It was helping with the stress, and adding muscle to boot. I hope we can figure out a way to keep it up, but it won't be happening the first half of this week - maybe Thursday or Friday or Saturday or Sunday in Phoenix.

I don't foresee the stress reducing this week, with getting used to the time change, trying to get the dog stable again (her blood sugar has been skyrocketing), and the travel and wedding. My best bet at the moment, I think, is probably just to focus on eating clean.